April 2, 2011

Slowing down

I tend to not post when we leave on vacation, because of the huge number of burglars that I'm sure make up my meager group of followers. Fortunately, our house is being adequately protected by armed guards and large ferocious animals while we're gone, so it's not really an issue.

We're headed to Tennessee for a few days . . . Gatlinburg to be exact. It was a last minute trip. We officially booked it less than a week ago. I'm looking forward to some badly needed rest and dedicated family time. One of our goals for the next few days is to SLOW DOWN. I've noticed over the last couple of weeks how often I tell my boys to "hurry up." I'm trying to be intentional about letting them move at their own pace.

Jack certainly tested me in that area tonight when we went out to dinner. Jack is a SLOW. EATER. Especially in restaurants. By the time Kyle, Bennett and I were finished our meals and the check was paid, he had consumed exactly 1/2 a chicken tender and two carrot sticks. He was just taking his time, looking around the restaurant, asking questions about everything he saw and practically sitting on my lap. Jack has a seemingly magnetic draw to whoever is sitting next to him at restaurants. Even if I pick him up and sit him down with his bottom planted firmly in his chair, I can just watch him start to lean into whoever is sitting next to him and just hang on his or her arm. He doesn't even realize he's doing it. He likes to cuddle and I'd guess that physical touch is his primary love language. I think this is how that desire manifests itself during meals.

Normally, I would have put a time limit on the meal and told him that we were leaving in 5 minutes and if he didn't finish, he'd just have to go hungry. Don't get me wrong . . . I think that's perfectly acceptable to do and when we're home and in a regular schedule, I'll probably continue to do that on occasion. Tonight, however, we just let him take his time. It started to get a little stressful because Ben was getting restless, but instead of stressing out, we just played. We tried to make things fun. Eventually, Jack finished and we all left happy and full.

With Ben, we're being intentional about letting him walk places himself. It's so much faster to pick him up and rush him to wherever we happen to be going. Instead, I'm putting him down, taking his hand and letting him set the pace.

I know that it can't always be this way when we get home. There are times we have to hurry and times that I'll still have to tell Jack "five more minutes." But this week, the focus is on relaxing and enjoying our time together.

1 comment:

Annie said...

gatlinburg is where we spent our honeymoon. we had a secluded cabin on a mountain that sounds similarly equipped to your condo. it was a great way to stay! enjoy your trip!!!!!!!!!