We have been gone 21 days from Arizona. Our 14 months around the world has officially started! However these first days have been a little different from what the rest of the year will be like.
We spent a week traveling in the US, so it really didn’t feel like we had gone anywhere yet. Once we got to Bali we split up from daddy for 12 days (we did stay with him for one night though half through!).
Where did Massy go?
My husband is doing a 3 year workshop in Bali (12 days each year). This is the reason our travels start here and almost end here in 2019.
Considering how busy we have been in the past few months, my plan for these days alone with the kids was to simply relax. Hopefully get them back on track with the time difference (we are 15 hours ahead from Arizona). Finally start some form of new lifestyle that we can follow as we travel. All great plans…..
Did it work?
In the first 6 days we went to bed at 7 pm. We watched some old episodes of “Full House” and were completely out by 7:45! The downfall? I woke up at 1 am, 3 am, 4 am and 5 am! If I was lucky, at least my kids were able to stretch out their sleep time to 5:30 am! But at that point Luca was jumping on everyone and ready to go!
In Bali it is still dark at 5:30 am. Honestly being in a new house I wasn’t crazy of getting out of the room without daylight!
Check out our YouTube video to see what the house looked like so you will understand better what I mean (don’t forget to sign up to our channel to see more of our videos every week)!
Jet lag entertainment option….
The best option to spend some time while waiting for the sun to come out was Facetiming with the grandparents! Of course they are more than happy to see their grandkids! But the time difference can be an issue.
For the Nonna in the US it was fine, since for her it was afternoon. However for the Nonni in Italy it was the middle of the night! Ops!!! I totally forgot to check the time! Aren’t grandparents just amazing and patient!!!!!
What did we do?
For the first 5 days we stayed in an area where we found a decent grocery store, so we could make breakfast and dinner at home. We would have breakfast at 6:15 am but by 9:30 we would be hungry again! The time difference really plays tricks on you!
As for the rhythm of our days. I’ll be honest, being alone with 3 kids is not a terrible challenge. However I did need to do some planning to keep them somewhat entertained. Otherwise if they are bored who knows what game they will come up with….I do have stories but I’ll save them for another post….
The first morning I thought “Lets go to the beach, at least they can go wild and I can enjoy the ocean air!”. Well, I forgot that we were staying in a popular surfing area, so every morning the beach was completely wiped out from the waves!
Luckily there was Finns Beach Club right on the beach. It was a bit pricy but for the month of June you could simply order at the bar a meal and enjoy their pool looking out on the ocean. Guess where we had our second breakfast every morning?! We would get there bright and early, actually way too early. In fact by 7:45 we were done with staying at home and were on the road, but the place opened at 9am!
My kids have a big age gap between the first 2 and the last one. Sometimes I feel like I’m dealing with teenagers on one side and the toddler on the other. They will be all jumping in the pool and having fun. At one point the “teenager” who is only 9 years old, decides that he is hungry again or bored or simply thinks it is time to go home! It is only 10 am! What am I going to do for the rest of the morning? Specially if I want to get the toddler tired and ready to nap, since the beach is off-limits? We would head back home to avoid any unhappy faces. On some days the little one would be asleep by the time we got back. However on other days he would be wild and ready to jump in the pool again! That meant no relax for me because magically we skipped the nap!
Finally by the afternoon the tide would calm down and we were ready to hit the beach! Again, I had great plans for myself, of sitting on the sand and enjoying the moment while the kids ran wild…..of course that did not happen!
My daughter was digging pools all over the beach and of course needed my help to make the biggest pool. My older son kept on running in the waves and wanted me to be wild with him! He was also trying to decide if he wanted to surf and possibly I should go with him…..My youngest didn’t want to go in the water because he is now afraid of the waves. However he loved running into the water coming out of the sewage! Oh boy it smelled so bad!
By the end of the day I was exhausted but so satisfied because all my time was dedicated to them! Playing with them and listening to them. But also dealing with their tougher moments and teaching them some little life lessons. It is amazing how many you can find in every moment!
On the bright side
These days alone with my kids have been so very special. Of course there was the craziness of jet lag, early teenage drama and simple boredom but it was all worth it.
I needed to have a moment to myself with them, when no other thoughts or worries could cloud my mind. I organized everything I had to organize, I finished all the work I had to finish, I sold everything I had to sell and now this year is just for them.
We always wish to have more time to spend with our kids. To share thoughts, ideas, talks, experiences and craziness. However as parents we always feel that we have too much to worry about to actually enjoy the moments with them.
Dads worry that their family is ok, safe and taken care of. Moms worry about why their kids are crying, what they will have for lunch the next day, if they slept enough, if they are behaving and the list can go on and on. Guess what? The only thing our kids worry about, is that you stop, sit down and play a game with them. Jump in the pool, go wild with them, read them a book or simply have a little chat.
Our kids want us to be part of their life physically and mentally 100% and not simply by planning it for them. I’m pretty sure sometimes they would prefer being with you and not with their friends!
Listening to my kids this week, to all their ideas, projects, thoughts and million of questions, I have come to realize that they simply wanted me to be there. I don’t have an answer to everything, but they are ok with that. They don’t actually expect it, they just want to make sure that you are truly listening. Possibly trying to figure out a solution or why not find one together?!
Mom guilt moments
Sometimes I feel guilty because I’m afraid I haven’t been the best parent. Too many distractions, too many things that seem important but are never going to be more important than them. The truth is that being a parent is not something that you go to school for. You just learn as you go with the hope that the result is pretty good.
I feel like we have given ourselves a chance to be less distracted and more present for them. A trip shouldn’t be the only way to do it though. We should be able to practice this every day, but the truth is that this trip isn’t a vacation for us, well probably the Bali part is!
In reality we see this year away as a year of continuous changes, continuous movement, continuous growing up, continuous challenges. We have decided to put ourselves through it together, with the wish to grow as a family, to grow as individuals and to transmit all this to the people around us.
So as this moment alone comes to an end, I am grateful to my kids for picking me as their mother, for always giving me a chance to be better for them, for loving me unconditionally, for being my beautiful human beings……
Now it is time to finally “regroup” with daddy, as Cosimo and Emma love to say, and go out there and share the world with all of you!
In case you want to read more about our adventures around Bali all together though, click here!
In case you just want to enjoy some photos of this beautiful island, check out our photo gallery.