Visiting Family Overseas Around School Schedule - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 03-09-2009, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just when you thought visiting overseas family couldn't get more complicated, enter school!

DS is in Kindergarten this year. It's the first year we've had to worry about school attendance vs. visiting family overseas. My husband's family lives in Iran. Prior to this year we have always visited in March or April when the weather is good and the tickets are cheap. This year there was no option of taking an extra week at spring break... DS has had a lot of illness and has missed too much school, so we had planned to go in the summer.

Easier said than done! He has classes he wants to attend, I have a reading class I want him to attend, and I don't think visiting Iran in August is a good idea due to the weather (no central air). But if we go earlier he will miss a bunch of classes and it will inconvenience our sitter.

I only have 2 weeks of vacation to dedicate to this trip. Traveling in summer is 2-3x as expensive as traveling in the spring. DH is upset because if we're paying that much money, he wants us to stay longer than two weeks. Honestly, given that DS is now in school and is more activity oriented, I think longer (more than 2 weeks long) trips are going to be a thing of the past.

At this point I am leaning towards going next year at spring break, adding a bit of time on either side for jet lag. It's cheaper and will give us more time to plan, and we wouldn't have to put aside summer plans or be miserable in the heat.

Honestly at this point I think we are going to have to let go of the notion that we can make it over there every year. I'd like to set aside time to take shorter vacations and visit other places. As it is the Iran trip basically takes all of my leisure time every year.

Any suggestions? I am going nuts.
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#2 of 4 Old 03-09-2009, 04:42 PM
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well, i think it really depends upon what you're prioritizing. and no matter what you prioritize, you're right.

if you prioritize spending time with family overseas and all of the education, adventure, and whatever else that brings, then school, after school activities, and all that other stuff will just have to 'deal.' and, they do/will.

if you prioritize school, activities and local stuff and all of the education, adventure and whatever else that brings, then family and you will have to deal with whatever happens--going less often, going in summer when it sucks, paying more, whatever.

good luck--it's hard to figure out what is best!
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#3 of 4 Old 03-10-2009, 04:20 PM
 
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to you mama,

It's tough to reconcile these needs! Mind you, missing school in kindergarten is different than missing school when your child is a teenager with university admissions pending. Travelling overseas to connect with family in a different culture and country definitely counts as education in my books!

I think your idea of postponing the trip to next year so you have more time to plan for a longer stay is a good idea. For that much money and the hassle and jet lag etc a short 10 day jaunt doesn't seem to justify all that inconvenience and hassle.

I have known colleagues with family in Australia who could only visit once every 2-3 years.

FWIW, I took DS1 to Hong Kong last fall to attend a cousin's wedding, and he missed two weeks of school. Not a major tragedy in the grand scheme of things. We probably won't have the finances or logistics to go back for several years, so it was now or quite a few years later. But my grandmas are getting old and their health not so good. I have no regrets going, even though finances didn't permit that the whole family could attend.

Good luck!

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#4 of 4 Old 03-11-2009, 04:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by FelixMom View Post
to you mama,

It's tough to reconcile these needs! Mind you, missing school in kindergarten is different than missing school when your child is a teenager with university admissions pending. Travelling overseas to connect with family in a different culture and country definitely counts as education in my books!

I think your idea of postponing the trip to next year so you have more time to plan for a longer stay is a good idea. For that much money and the hassle and jet lag etc a short 10 day jaunt doesn't seem to justify all that inconvenience and hassle.

I have known colleagues with family in Australia who could only visit once every 2-3 years.

FWIW, I took DS1 to Hong Kong last fall to attend a cousin's wedding, and he missed two weeks of school. Not a major tragedy in the grand scheme of things. We probably won't have the finances or logistics to go back for several years, so it was now or quite a few years later. But my grandmas are getting old and their health not so good. I have no regrets going, even though finances didn't permit that the whole family could attend.

Good luck!
No, if we waited until next year the trip would still be 2 weeks, (at spring break) but it would be cheaper to go.

I've decided to set aside 2 weeks in August for the trip. That way it won't conflict with early summer activities. I've decided to just pay our sitter for the 2 weeks we'll be gone because we will still need her for a week after we come back.

Honestly going for longer than 2 weeks is difficult for both me and DS. Neither of us likes the food there and we end up eating junk food and rice until we get back... after about 13 days we are going nuts.
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