Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Road Trip Time!!!

Okay, It is not really time for a Road Trip, but I will tell you about one of our Family road trips.

Being an Army Family we have taken a lot of road trips, but there are a few that always come up in conversations. I will tell you about one of those trips.

It was during Hubbyman's second deployment. Leave time was coming up, also called R & R and when I had talked to him last he thought everything was set, where he would be flying into Georgia and I would drive down from Virginia first dropping the kids off in North Carolina. That was "The Plan". At least until 2:30 AM on the morning I was to leave. I had everyone packed for a weekend trip.

That phone call changed "The Plan" dramatically. Now I had to drive all the way to Michigan, pack everyone up including the Hubbyman for at least 2 weeks, and I have about 36 hours to get there. I think I went back to sleep for about 2 hours and woke up at around 4:30 AM. While the kids continued to sleep I went ahead and emptied the packs that were already packed. The weather is different so everyone needed clothing for cooler weather. It took about 2 hours but I got everyone packed up. By this time the 2 kids were starting to wake up and were told of the change in plans. They were excited because the change in plans meant that we were once again headed back to Grandma and Grandpa's house!

By 9:00 AM Everyone had everything needed to make the trip in a pile by the front door. Just as I started to open the door to go out and load up I heard something and was not happy. Yup, It had started to rain! As quickly as I could I loaded everything and came back in to make sure that we were indeed ready to leave. Of coarse nothing could be that simple, as one child made a mess with a cup of juice, the other was filling their diaper. This went on with me cleaning up the house because of all the messes for about two hours. I decided not to waste the money and go ahead and have some lunch and had cleaned up from that. Finally I saw a break in the weather so I choose right then and there to leave. One at a time I loaded the kids up because this was the easiest way to make sure each was comfy and had their bag of fun for the trip. Just as we were ready to back out I had realized that I did not have my trusted CD of traveling songs, so back into the house I ran to grab it. We finally pulled out and started on our way to what was suppose to be a 12 hour trip at 1:00 PM. Thinking I had plenty of time because at most this trip should take 14 hours.

Everything was going great despite the rain which was on again off again for the first 3 hours of our trip. The kids and I were singing along to our CD just about ready to make our first stop when the thunder started and then the lightning came. Boy this was just not my travel day, but we made the first stop and got lucky with a close parking spot. Went in had a snack, did the whole bathroom thing, and about an hour later we were back in the vehicle with 2 cute stuffed animals from the gift shop.

We always stopped at the same places and I always let the kids pick out a new little friend to keep them company for the rest of the trip. It became our special thing when they were traveling with just Mommy.  Fast forward 10 hours and at the time we should have been pulling into my Parent's house we were still in Ohio at our 5th stop. It was very cold and the white stuff had started falling from the sky. Now 3:00 AM and ready to get back on the road, the brake lights had come on in my vehicle. All I could think about is why this stuff (but I am sure I used a not so great word) had to happen now.

I looked on the map and decided that I had about 3 and 1/2 hours left of the trip, called a couple people who both said that it was most likely a sensor or something and as long as the brakes were working I should be OK, and went ahead and got back on the road. After a little while the lights shut off and I felt much better about making the decision to keep going. The kids were fast asleep and I was finally able to listen to my own music. I was singing along and for once during this trip even though it was snowing and that I have been driving for now 15 hours or so, I was happy.

Just as I crossed the border from Ohio to Michigan it was snowing really hard and the road that I was traveling on was completely covered. A road that you usually could go 70mph on, I had to go 25mph. The road was horrible as everyone was just like me and we ended up making our own lanes until a semi would pass one of us and we would sneak behind them, just to follow the lights. This is about the time that the kids started to wake up because really we should have already been there.

To my amazement the kids stayed quiet and let me concentrate which I thanked them both for numerous times. Finally after driving 19 hours, driving through rain, driving through a thunderstorm, driving through snow, and driving on a road that was so covered with slush, ice, and snow that no one could see it, we pulled into my Parent's driveway. The kids ran in and were telling my Parents all about the fun but long trip. I was exhausted after being awake for over 24 hours and driving straight for 19 hours. Not only that but I had to be at the airport in 5 hours to pick up the Hubbyman, so I went to lay down.

My Mom woke me up about 3 and 1/2 hours later so I had time to get all of us ready to head to the airport. We made it there just in time to pick him up and were able to enjoy a very nice and relaxing 2 weeks. This was one trip that I will never forget. The kids and I had a lot of fun and I learned never to underestimate myself. Until this trip I didn't think I could ever drive more than 14 hours straight. I would have never known that I can make the kids laugh just by changing the words to the songs on our traveling CD. Even though this trip was a rough one it will never be forgotten.

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Discount Tire blogging program, making me eligible to receive a $50 gift card and be entered for a chance to win a prize valued at $1,000. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

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