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Wellllll, I clearly needed to get that off my chest yesterday. I feel much better! And also, I am no longer fantasizing about kicking soccer balls into my dad’s head. Progress!

We got home Tuesday night around midnight. I’d say that the length of our trip was about right- we were there 12 days- enough time to do all of the things we wanted to do and see all of the people we wanted to see.

Usually when we visit my family, David mopes around saying he’s bored. He was very trepiditious of spending so much time there on this trip. I instituted the “Schedule of Fun”- a calendar of each day’s plans. Before we left, we had a “family meeting” (my kids eat that sh*t up), and made a list of all the things we wanted to do. Our list included places we wanted to go (Mt. Rushmore, hiking) as well as more minor plans (baking with Grandma, riding in Uncle Kiner’s truck). We were able to fill in the calendar from our list.

This turned out to be very helpful. David knew what to expect each day, and where there was free time to do other things, like go biz-carting with my brother. The rest of my family knew our plans, and joined us whenever their schedules allowed. Additionally, it was very clear which days we were spending with my mom and which days with my dad, eliminating any hard feelings or disappointment.

I should add that while things ended on a sour note with my dad, the first week was perfectly pleasant. So his behavior did not ruin our trip by any means. We had a really good vacation- lots of family time, some kickin’ photos of ourselves balanced on mountain tops, and lots of time with people we don’t get to see much.

But now we are home, at it feels great. It feels even better now that we are all unpacked (!! I know, an amazing accomplishment here in the Green household), and our house is cleaned- including the 2 inches of crushed acorns that make their way into our family room, and that we did not clean up before we left. I’d say yesterday was productive.

Next up- some photos of our trip, Camp Sue, and the accelerated end to summer.