Well, vacation days are nearly over. The smores have been eaten, the woodpile is dimished and piles of laundry remain. Hubby has already headed home (he has to work in the morning) and I plan to leave with the kids tomorrow afternoon.
We are vacationing with a family that is far more laid-back than we are. Things like set bed-times, no dessert if you haven't eaten your dinner, and having to ask before doing things just aren't part of their family dynamic and so we tried to run our family the same way for the week. Overall, I would say it went very well. The things that I worried about (like my kids melting down because they were staying up so late) may have occurred, but they weren't as big of a deal as I expected them to be.
Now I'm wondering how it will be when I get back home. Can we go back to 8ish bedtimes when they've been going to bed at 11 pm all week? Will they return to asking permission before going outside at our house, or will they just disappear into the outdoors when the mood takes them? I suspect we may have a few battles when we enforce the kids trying everything on their plate before getting down from the dinner table.
Regardless of how the return transition goes, I'm glad for the "freedom project" experience of this week. It has taught me about my own abilities, taught me about my kids' abilities, taught me some of the benefits of a laid-back lifestyle and perhaps even underscored some of the things that I like about my own system at home. I'm glad for the time spent with wonderful friends and enjoyed their family and their perspectives on life and parenting.
I feel blessed by the week. Pray for our safe return trip home tomorrow!