'Crowdsourcing' is the idea of posing a question to a large group and allowing that group to offer up ideas for a solution.
Prior to our 12 hour flight to Israel, I crowdsourced (by email) the question of: how to cope with 3 kids ages 5 and under without going crazy.
The responses were very similar:
- activities, activities, activities
- snacks, snacks, snacks
- portable DVD player
- Benadryl to "knock them out"
And my favorite two were:
"I don't buy junk food for my kids, unless we are flying. It's a special treat for them."
"NEVER give your kids sugar on a plane. It's a quick high followed by disaster."
OK, so maybe crowdsourcing doesn't always work.
Obviously, the situation with Hamas and Gaza is quite serious and involves matters of life and death, so I certainly do not mean to minimize the gravity of that situation, but when a number of people asked me about my concerns for physical safety, I responded:
Honestly, I am more concerned with surviving the 12 hour trip than I am with Hamas
My only advice to add to this is: Manage your own expectations.
In "The Art of Happiness" by the Dalai Lama, he suggests that you imagine as many possible scenarios for a given event, so that if one does come to pass, you are mentally ready.
I was ready for total meltdown and Armageddon, but it was overkill. Combining that with the solid advice from the FOJ community, the team performed brilliantly.
Of course, the flight home still hasn't occurred.