Road Trip Ramblings, Day 2 – How Much More Road is There?

Day 2

My children ALWAYS sleep later on Road Trip mornings than they would if they were home. It’s another one of those Murphy’s Laws of Children. Today, I would not mind if they woke up at 5 am so we could get up and get going since we have a full day of traveling ahead of us. It never happens that way and I let them sleep.

Eventually they wake and I start the process of getting everyone dressed and ready as I countdown how many people are left. I am always a crazy lady as I try to pack up everything once it gets used for the last time and then plunk it outside the hotel room door to help me survey what is left in the room. Since I want the Road Trips to be fun, I cannot throw everyone in the car with a mini box of Froot Loops and race off. My wee ones love the hotel breakfast, of course, so we always need to factor that into the morning time frame. My mom already headed down to breakfast after having spent the evening in her own room, at my suggestion. If she was going to be sane enough to help out again today, she may as well have had some peace throughout the evening.

It worked and she was feeling rejuvenated, as was evident by her numerous texts about breakfast. We conversed via text something like this…

mom – I am down at breakfast and can bring stuff back.

me – Ok, I am getting everyone ready now.

mom – Are you coming down?

me – That is the plan, I am trying to get things around now.

mom – I will save the table then.

me – Ok, good, we will be down. I am still getting everyone ready.

mom – Are you coming? It is getting full and I do not want to lose the table.

me – Yes, we are coming…not ready. Diaper change. Come back if you need to.

mom – It is full and there won’t be any tables. I don’t want the kids to be disappointed. Should I hold the table?

me – Yes.

Mom – Are you coming?

me – YES…diaper change!

We made it to breakfast and some of the crowd had cleared. We were able to enjoy our table and our breakfast. With bellies full, we headed back to the room so I could finish packing. By the time I have readied us to leave the hotel room, we are still at least a half hour away from leaving the hotel premises because I need to pack the minivan. You would think that this would be an easy process since I just packed it a day ago and we did not need to fully unload. But for some reason, our items seem to have taken on added bulk and I cannot get things to fit back into the car.


Whoever is in charge of keeping the kids busy while I wrestle with packing and repacking and repacking our gear has no easy task either. I am not sure which one I would prefer, but it makes sense for me to end up with gear packing duty since I need to know where everything related to our “stuff” is when it is packed in the car.

Now that I have taken so long to get the car packed up we need to make another run to the restrooms before we leave because I really do not want to stop again for the bathroom for hours. I am sweaty, swearing and beyond frustrated. It ain’t perty.

We leave the hotel and the gods are with us as we manage to get a couple of hours of drive time under our belts before we need to stop. “Bathroom issues” and “toddler intolerance” continue to be the themes for Day 2, although not quite as strong. Here is a picture of a makeshift car curtain to provide some privacy while the kids use the car pot at our stops. I absolutely plan on using these moments as retaliation when my children are older and they tease me about some sore point in their upbringing. It isn’t all roses for me either!


I have also noticed that a new theme is developing, which does not help with trying to get the kids to use up their stored energy from sitting in the car. For some reason, the rest stops seem to be particularly dirty on this trip…inside and out. The grassy areas are filthy so the kids cannot run there and play because I do not want anyone falling down or picking up things. And when I say picking up things, I mean all kinds of “things”. Actual rocks, garbage or other treasures, as well as diseases. We just finished a bout of “Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease” at our house. I do not need other body areas affected now as we travel to visit family and enjoy summer vacation.

The inside of the rest stops are yucky too so I do not want anyone fooling around, playing or touching things there either. That being the case, we never get to use up our energy. Well, the kids do not get to use up their energy. I have actually used up ALL of my energy keeping everyone from using theirs. It is exhausting. I cannot wait to end the Road Trip and cleanse everyone and everything.

At this point, it is still too early to know how the evening will play out. We have only logged six hours of driving time the first day so there are nine hours left. That is insane. There is no number on the warp speed odometer that will make a dent in that kind of driving time left. But another night spending hours unloading at a hotel and getting set up, only to spend hours the next morning breaking camp and repacking the car slips further away as an option as the day wears on.

Eventually, there is the unspoken decision that we will drive on to the final destination no matter what. HOW that will happen is also left unspoken because we have no idea how it will actually become a reality. But we know we have committed to the plan and as we plug along we manage to log some decent mileage during car naps.


The rest of the trip ends up happening through a series of stops every hour to stretch tiny legs, buy any kind of treat to keep people happy and state change long enough to make it another hour. And so on.

We needed to stop at the airport so that my mother could pick up her car that she left behind when she flew out to visit us. It is late evening, and as we depart the airport in a two-car caravan, my toddler and middle child are finally sleeping. My oldest child, who is really not that old at all, has proclaimed that he will stay awake to help me drive. He is in the far back of the van and he is my chatterbug. He spent most of his time “helping me drive” by asking me questions about owls at night, what night moths looked like and telling me that he did not like the forest next to us as we drove. I had to keep whispering to him, loudly so that he could hear me in the back of the minivan, that I did not want to talk because his siblings were sleeping. He was helpful, however, telling me to be careful because horses would be crossing the road, according to the sign that he saw. At this hour of the night, the horses should be in bed, as should we.

We arrive at destination 11 pm, Eastern time, which is really 10 pm “our time”. Momma is fried. My adult traveling companion is happy to be back at her home. Two weeks spent visiting in our world can do that to you. My two older children are awake and refreshed now to have arrived. Hey, it’s grandma’s house and that means there are toys to be played with that we have not seen in months. They happily and eagerly occupy themselves which gives me an opportunity to bring in what we need for the night and then to bring in my sleeping toddler. He wakes briefly while we are in his room as it is getting readied, but only enough to point to his bed. I snuggle him in and leave. He is off to dreamland immediately. The other two, have no plans of sleeping at all. But, momma is exhausted so we begin the bedtime journey and try to at least clean off some of the “yuckies” from the trip by performing a small amount of personal hygiene. Then, they get tucked in and follow their sibling to dreamland. I am not far behind.

Thank you Lord for getting us here safely, one more time.



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