Vacations and fun activities abound when your children are still young enough to enjoy doing things. Mothers who have child custody orders governing how their children spend their time must ensure that plans fall in line with the orders. The key here is to plan ahead for all vacations and special events.
#1: Check the custody order if you already have one
Before you make any plans, review the child custody order to determine when you are going to have your child at your home. This is a starting point for all your plans. This also gives you an idea of how child custody exchanges will need to occur so you can plan accordingly.
#2: Check dates for trips and other important events
Try to plan any trips or other activities with that schedule in mind. Even things you will do without your child must take the custody agreement into account because you will either have to find child care for your child and miss important bonding time or you will have to opt to bring your child with you.
#3: Work with your ex regarding the actual schedule
There might be conflicts with events that have a firm date, such as a family wedding or holiday event, and the child custody schedule. You can try to work with your ex regarding temporary changes to the child custody agreement based on that information. Your ex might have some events and conflicts for the custody schedule. Be willing to work with him as much as possible since these negotiations are a two-way street.
#4: Plan for child care when the child will be with you
Unless your child is a responsible teenager who can stay home alone, you will have to make plans for child care when your child isn't in school. This isn't an issue if you can stay home on all school vacations. If this isn't your situation, try to find someone who can step in and watch your child only when you have physical custody. Reputable babysitters or drop in child care centers might be feasible options for you.
#5: Seek out modifications when necessary
When you and your ex-husband can't agree on how to handle major conflicts regarding the child custody order, you may decide to seek out a modification. California law sets specific standards for modifications. In all child custody matters, you and your ex must try to work things out using mediation before the court will step in. Keep this in mind so that you have ample time to get matters related to events worked out in time.