Family Visits, Vacations, and Stress

3 Jul

Have you ever gotten close to a family visit  and started to get stressed?  Have you gotten into arguments when planning a vacation?If you have then you are like me!!  Good for you!  At least you know you aren’t alone.

It is sort of humorous actually.  In just three days, we start 17 days of vacation.  For the first few, my husband’s dad, brother, and sister are coming to visit.  Once they leave, we are off to Coeur d’Alene to visit my sister, and then heading to Priest Lake for some backpacking.  Then on the way home to Seattle, we will likely stop around Leavenworth and backpack for another night.  It is going to be a great time!

The funny thing is that the last several days I have started to feel stressed.  I have been constantly thinking about the cleaning and preparing that I need to do before his family comes.  It is all self imposed stress.  My house is neat, and I could get away just cleaning the bathrooms.  Nonetheless, I have made a long list of tasks.

On the top of Mt. Walker in the Olympics.

Why do I do that?  It is so unnecessary. The important thing is that they are coming, and it will be great to see them!

So along with getting self-imposed stress, my husband and I have had some small run ins about our trip.

At first we decided we wanted to go to Yellowstone.  Awesome right?  Well, you actually have to book that a year out if you don’t want to pay $200 a night!  So we scratched that.  I will chalk it up to our vacation inexperience.

The next plan involved a trip down to Portland and California, but I was dead set on seeing my sister.  Putting my foot down on vacation plans didn’t make for a fun start.

It was a case of my expectations verses  joint decision making.  I realized I didn’t have to see her during this vacation, and that it would be better to start the planning from a blank slate and open mind.

With my more mature mindset, we continued our trip evolution…

Next we decided that we wanted to do at least one overnight backpacking trip.  I found this great place called Priest Lake north of Couer d’Alene.  Lots of wildlife for the husband, and we would get to visit my sister’s family. Score!  Husband found some great places in the Central Cascades near Leavenworth for camping as well.  We will stop there on the way home.  Thus our plan is born!

So there is my vacation planning and family visit confession.  Have you ever had a similar experience?  Do you think that it is misaligned expectations causing the problem?  Tell me about it in the comments!

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One Response to “Family Visits, Vacations, and Stress”

  1. alenapm July 3, 2012 at 10:08 #

    Great point. I guess I am just like you. 😉Yes, I have definitely run into some vacation stress. When it’s just Rich and myself we do great. But add a couple friends in Lisbon, or family in Seaside, and watch out! Having friends and family around is wonderful but anything that takes you out of your rhythm can cause a lot of tension. I think you’re absolutely right. Setting different expectations could really help when visitors enter the equation.

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