...to a successful road trip!
My wheels are already spinning in prep for our First Family of 6 Roadtrip, to NC. Oooh, shivers!
The trick is to prepare backpacks for each child, keeping them in hiding all week (the backpacks, not the kids - although hey! That sounds great too!), and buying at least one cheap, new toy for each to discover on the road. Thereby buying silence, and then more entertainment wheeling and dealing as they discuss trade vs. borrow options amongst each other. And don't think Phoenix is left out of this - since he will have Elmo crackers with which to bargain, and the older kids l-o-v-e his crackers. They just have to get over his desire to drool on their toys if they want share his crackers.
Next, secret DVD purchases. I squirrel these away in the glove box, and whip them out when things get a little hairy. If I time it right, we will wheel into Washington just as a movie is ending. Finito perfecto. So when I see the Knightdale sign, time to pop in a surprise show.
My latest trick, now that the girls are old enough, will be to pack a lunchbox full of snacks for each one. This will also result in wheeling and dealing, because Isabella's box will be empty before we reach the GA line (taking bets now), Cole's will have only the fruit left, and Jadyn...ah, my long-range planner, will have saved her favorites for last, which will probably be a sweet treat. We'll see how this plays out. She's got that tough cookie streak, but buried underneath is the tender heart that sometimes feels sorry for the others if they play it right. Cole will badger her, and Isabella will repeat over and over, with the ever-present pouted lips "But Jadyn, I thought we were best friends?!" When this discussion reaches a fever-pitch, I will commence the Mardi Gras part of the trip, and throw smarties around. And wish I had one of those new-fangled ipod thingies, to plug up my eardrums.
We are hoping to stop in Charlotte, at Uncle Zayah's for lunch. And by stop, I mean, stop at the end of the driveway and let the kids out before speeding away. Oh, how he loves little hoodlums rooting around his flower beds and rearranging his fragile decor! I think it is a kindness I perform, curbing that teensy little parent-lust he gets from time to time. Being an uncle rocks.
When we get to my Mom's, she will be ready to take over, run them around the field and show off all that empty-nest energy that she saves up for grandmothering. Rick and I will be ready to sample some Yuengling in sturdy quantities.
And that's just one potential trip equation, the one I prefer to dwell on, because all my planning works just right. Tied up neat with a bow. And now my littlest Big is standing in his crib, hollering for rescue. So long!