Sunday, June 16, 2013

Surviving a Road Trip with Kids

 There's never too many vacation pictures, right?  The boys declared the International Spy Museum as their favorite trip destination.

Father's Day lunch was spent with Papa.  Poor guy, Chris was at work.
The best picture I could snap (appropriately) at church of  Willie Robertson from Duck Dynasty.  He preached this morning's sermon.

Perhaps the most common question I've received about our Washington, D.C. vacation is "How was the trip?"  By trip the questioner means commute.  I think most cringe just thinking about being stuck/trapped in a minivan for nine plus hours with four boys under the age of eleven.  A week ago, I cringed/panicked too.  After one too many sleepless nights, I took matters into my own hands and determined if sanity was to be had the commute must be planned for with precision.  

So by the time we departed for DC, I was ready.  Packed into the minivan sat new books for the boys (compliments of an awesome book warehouse sale, thanks Cara for the heads-up!), an array of sweet and savory treats, and enough DVDs to fully stock a Redbox.  Those goodies kept them busy for the first half and then I resorted to old standbys: the license plate game, rhyming songs, and prayer.

We arrive in Washington, D.C. happy, even still speaking to each other.  It was a win!

The thing I failed to plan for was the trip home.  I hadn't given one thought to the inevitable return commute (denial anyone?).  No more new books sat in the car.  Sweet and salty snacks were no longer novel.  The DVDs had all been watched.  

For the first half of the ride, the boys stayed fairly busy.  It was the second half when things started to unravel.  We hit a nasty patch of traffic that left us parked on the highway for over an hour.  Little boys (and two adults) were hungry/hot/cold/wet/mad.  I was forced to get creative again.  We tried new games; "Guess the roadkill" became a quick favorite.  I turned to old standbys: prayer and bribery.  A mere 12 (yes 12!) hours later, we rolled into our driveway still speaking to each other, but barely.

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