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Lapland - When to tell DS?

(32 Posts)
MamaPizza Mon 10-Nov-14 18:53:33

I need Mumsnet jury's help.

We are going to Lapland on the 17th December. We are also getting married there. <squeals>

DS is 5 and fully believes in Santa, elves and all the magic.

He doesn't know yet, it's been hard keeping it a secret since January, but so far so good.

It's getting close now.

Me and DH (to be) just had a mini argument (again!) and we are letting Mumsnet decide.

He wants to tell DS at the airport / the morning we fly. He thinks it will be the bigger surprise on the day. We have to leave in the middle of the night as the flight is at 6am.
I am reluctant to wait this long as I need to pack the weekend before and get everything ready for the wedding. No hiding places in the house for suitcases.

I want to tell DS on the 7th December as it is a Sunday and ten days before the big day, meaning DS can enjoy a countdown, can watch youtube videos on husky rides, sledging etc., look at maps on where we are going and share the excitement with us. Packing will be much easier as it won't be a secret.

So, mumsnet jury - tell ten days before or on the day? It's your call fgrin

ZeViteVitchofCwismas Mon 10-Nov-14 19:01:33

wow what an utterly amazing surprise and what a brilliant idea for a wedding grin congratulations.

I think ten days may be too much for a year old though, I wouldnt do it that morning either but perhaps 5 days before? A good compromise?

SixerofthePixies Mon 10-Nov-14 19:02:44

I told mine on the day. They had been asking for ages to post their letter to FC (we went abt 20th tho) and I had kept putting them off. We to up v early and I said we had to go to airport to pick up some friends. When we got there I produced their FC letters and said we were too late to post them so we were taking them to Santa ourselves.

My one tip is it will be colder than you can imagine, you def need double gloves (a thinsulate type pair then waterproof ones) they will then give you large mittens to go over the top.

Also those husky rides are far faster than you would imagine!

MamaPizza Mon 10-Nov-14 19:04:37

No compromise in date, I'm afraid. I want to do Sunday the 7th as we are both off work and can enjoy his face / be there for the surprise. The Sunday after I'll be already manically packing / doing final panic shops.

I just keep thinking how excited he was this summer for his birthday counting down for 40 odd days to his big day and getting more and more excited.

And thanks, it will be magical. In an ice chapel fsmile

MamaPizza Mon 10-Nov-14 19:06:50

Sixerofthepixies, the letter idea sounds lovely.

I know, I'm already freezing now and it's +5 to +10. I don't know what I was thinking getting married in the cold. wink

Can't wait for the husky ride!

QuintsBombWithAWiew Mon 10-Nov-14 19:10:30

Tell him before. If you tell him in the morning, you are depriving him of the pleasure of anticipation, which is a major part of the enjoyment!

Would YOU have wanted to have this sprung on you on the 16th? Or do you enjoy looking back at the excitement and the planning? Why not let your child in on this!?

Imagine the conversations, the telling him about what he will experience, google dogsledging so he knows what will happen, etc?

The anticipation of a pleasure can sometimes be as important and great as the pleasure itself. It is part of maximizing the pleasure.

Have fun and good luck!

waithorse Mon 10-Nov-14 19:10:32

This is so exciting. I'm voting for telling him early.

RufusTheReindeer Mon 10-Nov-14 19:11:47

Congratulations thanks

We told the children when we were at the airport..I think it should probably worry me that they believed we were just going to the airport for breakfast hmm

Catnuzzle Mon 10-Nov-14 19:13:29

Mine know already, we've been talking about it for ages and it's a great bargaining tool for good behaviour. See you there!!!

MamaPizza Mon 10-Nov-14 19:34:56

Quint, I'm 100% with you, but I've promised DH to put it out there and see what mumsnetters think.

Rufus, that's funny!

Cat, whereabouts are you staying? We are in Pallas. I want to talk to DS too, it's killing me!!!

So, at the moment two for in the morning, the rest for before, am I getting this right?

ClashCityRocker Mon 10-Nov-14 19:35:13

I agree, tell him early, give him a chance to get excited.

Children can act in very odd ways to surprises - I know my dn who got a surprise trip to Disneyland in a similar way was very overwhelmed by it all and my sil said, with hind sight, they wished they'd given her more time to process was a bit 'bam bam bam' for her I think.

ClashCityRocker Mon 10-Nov-14 19:36:57

Oh and have a lovely time!

It sounds amazing. Something I always wanted to do, although DH is he biggest cold-arse going so no chance I fear...

youbethemummylion Mon 10-Nov-14 19:41:39

Tell him early my parents surprised me with a trip to Euro Disney they told me at the ferry port I thought we were just going to look at the big boats. I cried because I hadn't said goodbye to the rabbit, I cried because I thought Nana would miss me, I cried because it was a shock and I didn't like it being sprung on me. When we got to the hotel I cried because they had packed the wrong PJ's and the wrong stuffed toy. I'm sure I spoiled it for them as I'm sure they were looking forward to the big surprise /look on my face bit. Children don't always like surprises.

ThinkIveBeenHacked Mon 10-Nov-14 19:45:36

Id tell him we were going on a secret trip on X date, on the 7th, then not reveal the location til you get to the airport.

KitKat1985 Mon 10-Nov-14 19:56:37

Another vote for telling him in advance. I would think the anticipation and pre-holiday excitement will make it all the enjoyable for him. Also not all children like surprises. Plus practically will make packing etc easier as you say. xxx

Leeds2 Mon 10-Nov-14 20:00:48

I would tell him early, so that he has the chance to enjoy the anticipation.

I didn't see the ice chapel when we were in Lapland, maybe 11 years ago, but I saw the one at the Ice Hotel and it was fabulous! What are you wearing?

Cherrypippin Mon 10-Nov-14 20:01:31

We're taking our children on a special christmas holiday and have decided to put little clues in their advent calendars for the first 8 days that spell out the name of the place. This then gives them a couple of weeks to get really excited.

gruber Mon 10-Nov-14 20:09:14

Oh, tell him early- 7th sounds perfect. My 6 yr old hates surprises and like you say half the fun is in the anticipation. Especially as there's so much to take in- lapland, FC, you getting married (congratulations!).

My parents & grandparents surprised me with a trip to see the ballet when I was about 8 or 9. I cried because I was so shocked and upset. If I'd had time to get used to it I know I would have enjoyed it more. So go ahead and tell him!

ZeViteVitchofCwismas Mon 10-Nov-14 22:46:27

The anticipation of a pleasure can sometimes be as important and great as the pleasure itself. It is part of maximizing the pleasure

If he has shown he can cope with long waits, def do it 10 days before, agree anticpation is amazing too.

Lucky you promise you will post back adn tell us about it!

PesoPenguin Mon 10-Nov-14 22:54:50

I was going to say wait til you get to the airport, but with all the tales of crying on here... I wouldn't risk it!

Tractorandtree Mon 10-Nov-14 23:00:28

I'd do it before, at 5 he's old enough to count down the days and enjoy the anticipation. Ds1 (5.5) would love that part. If we didn't tell him until the morning it would be 50/50 between excitement and angry tantrum that we hadn't told him before.

Have fun smile

Vijac Mon 10-Nov-14 23:11:57

I would tell before half the fun of birthdays, Christmas etc. is the build up, esp for kids.

GinIsCalling Mon 10-Nov-14 23:28:04

Ten days is the perfect amount of time to get excited, discuss it with his friends, decide what HE wants to take etc. You want him to be excited on the day, not overwhelmed. We got married this summer and my DS was a bit overwhelmed, although he had a lovely day, but found the whole wedding thing a lot to understand (ours was also a destination wedding, albeit just at the family holiday home in France). We had explained to him in advance, but he found it very different to other weddings as it was all about his mummy and daddy this time. He is slightly younger than your son though.

Greythorne Tue 11-Nov-14 00:54:08

My mum once surprised my dad with an amazing trip (on Concorde) and he did not know until they got to Heathrow.

It was an amazing surprise but he said later he would have preferred to know earlier to enjoy the looking forward. He said it all happened too fast and before he knew it, the flight was over and he had not had time to savour it.

I vote for early. Tell the kids now!!!

Emmiedarling Wed 12-Nov-14 15:16:46

Before - kids need time to process...he will really enjoy counting down..

Congratulations to you! Have a lovely time smile

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