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Navigating the Ups and Downs of Family Travel

So this first photo was a rare moment of calm and pleasure between Jacob and me yesterday, despite the gorgeous weather and views in Varenna. I’ll be honest, it was a rough day leaving Milan to travel to Varenna on Lake Como by a one-hour train. Jacob was just not having any of it, all day long. Between sleep struggles/adjustments, so many major transitions for Jacob from his usual routine, and me getting over a bad cold, we’re all exhausted and running on little bandwidth and patience. 

Then, while at dinner in the Varenna town square, some friendly American empty-nesters from Atlanta sitting next to us were empathetic to our situation. They gave us a pep talk, shared stories of traveling with their young kids, and even motivated Jacob to eat his dinner with a lemon lollipop reward. These kind strangers helped us to make the best of a difficult day of parenting and gave us some much-needed perspective on the bigger picture of this trip and experience for our family (which sometimes can seem truly insane in the lowest moments!).