I'd better document this one before I forget. I've been cruising this weekend. Me and the kiddos on a weekend trip ovder to see my mom and as I didn't come around to buying us plane tickets in time, I decided last minute that we would still do the trip, but by boat. My parents live on an island, which is interconnected with mainland Finland and with Sweden through a myriad of cruise ships, sailing the Baltic to provide us Finns and the Swedes with an easy gettaway, tax free booze and all other kind of cruise experiences.
Well, I think I've blogged about what cruising was all about when I was a kid. Eating those big candy bags, 1 kilo each. It was helluva heaven for a kid in the early stages of developing a sweet tooth. And yes, there was no stopping me as the years passed; cloetta, turkish pepper, salty pinguins, haribo mixes, I tried them all, one kilo at a time, one bag at a time. As I now think of it, I can't believe it. I was getting drunk before I even knew what alcohol is... getting drunk on sugar. How did my parents let that happen? Well, because they were not aware of the connections. Not aware of the true harms that sugar does to the body. Not aware of their daughter's body and mind being extra sensitive to sweet stuff. Well yes, they knew, they saw me in action....and I was a lot better at finishing my bag than my brother ever was - but I do not think my parents really understood how harmful that sweet tooth of mine could be.
Anyway, I am not that surprised to see that not much has changed on those cruises. Kids still carry around big bags of candy. Adults (and children) still overeat in the buffet, both for breakfast and dinner...What surprises me though, is how hard it is to go on a cruise with children, who are not supposed to overeat on sugar, not supposed to eat any wheat at all, and who might be developing ear infections by ingesting milk products. My goodness. These are the times you realize how much of that stuff is just in ALL our most common foods! No wonder people are getting sick....
What did I do? Well, I took the kids to the "upper class" breakfast and I stocked up on fresh fruits for them. I let them eat as much glutenfree bread as they wanted, with some ham and veggies and I got them some cooked eggs. Funny part is that in the midst of this morning breakfast buffet offering, filled with wheat croissants, cookies, freshly baked breads, cakes and cookies, I managed to keep the kids happy by only offering them one thing they normally do not get: apple juice (mixed with water, they wouldn't tell). They were jumping up and down when they realized they were getting juice. I would probably be labeled as a cruel parent by some, but I myself take that as an achievement, and really that is all that count for me.
I was annoyed that they gave out chocolate covered caramell lollypops to the kids in the playroom but after checking the label of kidone's treat I decided to let her have it. It did not contain wheat and taking it away would have been very cruel towards her, but luckily kidtwo was too occupied in the ball sea to even know of the lollypop existence.
On they way back, the other cruise company was kind enough to only have toys included in their givaways (well givaway is maybe not the right word, I had to pay them 2 euros each for the fishing experience...). However, as it was afternoon and the kids were tired, there were also a whole lot more temptations of sweets in their surroundings (other kids eating sweets). We did the buffet to kill time. And I let them eat nachos, all they could eat. Then they had a sorbet ice cream, all they could eat. It was 2 hours before hitting land so I gathered we'd make before the sugar low. And we did. The kids were sleeping within 5 minutes of getting into the car. It was a good trip. We all enjoyed it. In our own way.