I’m a little behind (almost two weeks) in writing this post, so THANK YOU to Amanda at Running With Spoons for hosing her regular Think Out Loud Thursday so that I can share this with you as a nice little photo dump.
I am not INSANE, but…I did drive all the way from NC to IA with two kids under the age of 5; by myself for Thanksgiving.
We left on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving….1200 miles ahead of us (supposed to take 17.5 hours). We were all smiles and ready to go!
Luckily, the kids fell asleep shortly after this photo was taken and I was able to drive for awhile uninterrupted. I had already been up since 5:30am and had taught 5 hours worth of yoga. I knew I was in for an adventure as the hotel we had booked was an 8 hour drive away on a good day.
We stopped….a lot, because the little guy decided that he’s now potty training. Yep, on the way to Iowa. We finally got to dinner, somewhere barely inside of West Virginia, at the fabulous Applebee’s. The kids were excited for swirly straws! We did their appetizer
special so that dinner was cheap. I had tolls to pay for! Then, it was back into the car for another couple of hours. The kids were sooo tired by the time we stopped at our hotel (still in West Virginia), that they didn’t really notice me carrying them in or putting their pajamas on.
I too crashed for a few hours and then it was time for the start of day two! Continental breakfast isn’t what I remember it to be…either that or I’ve been spoiled by hotels that give free HOT breakfast, but the boys didn’t mind. They were just excited to get to Iowa!
As soon as we got on the road, my hip seized up on me! It’s been a recurring problem that I’ve had since birth, but that’s a story for a different day…..There’s only so much stretching you can do while driving a car, so I improvised a make shift “foam roller” out of my water bottle. I had used cold cans of soda (something I rarely drink but brought along for a sugar boost) the day before to keep any inflammation down, but needed something a little deeper this time. Setting it right into my piriformis did the trick! I can’t tell you the hours that I drove like this off and on in both the trip to Iowa and back again! The states were flying by on day two…. Kentucky (we saw hardly any horses, much to the disappointment of the boys),
Indiana (why is this state so long?), and then finally into Illinois for the cheapest gas of the trip and LUNCH! We went with Panera, because although they have priced me out on trips for work….the three of us can easily share a You Pick Two and a chocolate chip cookie for a decent price. We went with a Sierra Turkey and Mac and Cheese. They were both a big hit! We had not all that much further to go (Illinois is kind of slow driving) and we started to hit some rain, so I encouraged the boys to close their eyes and we’d be there before you know it! We pulled in around 6:15 that evening to everyone’s relief. The adventures were varied and many that week. I didn’t take enough pictures (I was living the moment instead of recording it).
And before we knew it, it was time to head back on the road. The trip home was a little harrier than the trip there. I overslept on waking the second morning.
We hit traffic, road construction, bad weather, accidents, and rerouted. The thing about the trip in general is this…..I tried to remind myself the entire way that my kids are kids. They are going to get tired of riding in a car, watching movies, seeing the same thing out the window, eating at restaurants, staying at someone else’s house, etc, etc, etc. This fall I have cultivated some serious patience that I needed for this trip. I kept my calm, took it in stride, and tried to be sensitive to their situation throughout the journey. And I’m proud to say, that I only snapped at them once: coming across the bridge into town because they were being so loud and yelling about how they wanted out of their car seats that I missed the turn and we had to go around and try again…..Man I hate driving into Wilmington!
Have you ever been so daring?
How do you travel as a family?
How is your patience holding up this holiday season?