Wednesday, April 7, 2010

traveling with a full load...

On the way to SLC, the kids were fabulous. We drove 13 hours in one day and the girls read most of the way, with Lilly and Elise playing, singing and eating a whole lot of goldfish, pretzels, oranges and string cheese. Lilly cried for a whopping 10 minutes of the drive down and this was only because her seat was wet. (from her pouring water on herself, of course.) This trip was made possible by having a house full of bookworms. There were no video games or movies and the most we did to entertain was having John Bytheway booming through the speakers every now and again. (and he IS entertaining.) Are you ready for true brilliance that only could come from a mother of 8? A dear friend of ours brought over some packages for our trip. They were wrapped and had tags on them reading things like "Open when you get to Le Grande." They weren't anything major, but little treats that definitely served as something to break up the trip. This was more than a gift for just this trip as I can guarantee you that it will be used on many future vacations.

Now, to the hotel....on the second night there, Lilly woke up and would not go to sleep. After being up with her for a good two hours, I fell asleep for a little. (I think about 30 minutes.) What would you do in a hotel if you were 2 years old and unsupervised? I know this much: When I woke up, she was in the fridge and had already gone through a few cheese sticks and had leftover strawberries on her face. She as tearing apart my purse and had also discovered my lipstick. No, she didn't call 911. She saved that for while mom was trying to watch conference the next day. I must confess that I did not prepare well for the hotel. Too much sitting and not enough to keep them entertained. I should have brought some playdough, coloring stuff (I know! I didn't even bring coloring stuff!) and handcuffs. :) (for them, not for me.) And my final word on hotels: If I can't watch conference at home, why would I be able to watch it with the younger of the bunch in a hotel with minimal toys (6 LPS) or chance at entertainment? I think Elder Bednar described my conference experience somewhere in his talk from last October.

And for the trip home? We heard the unfortunate announcement from the back that Hannah had finished Little House in the Big Woods before we hit Burley, ID. Yes, you would think that was good news, but Hannah is a mischievous one and books are amazing at keeping her...busy. I told Chris that she was going to have a hard time for the rest of the trip, but what I really should have said was "Let's stop at a book store and stock up!". She really did have a hard time, which meant that Elise and Rachel, her row partners, also had a hard time. She is our instigator and is frequently at the center of conflicts in the car. Pretty soon, I found myself in the backseat, bribing anyone who would take a nap with an ice cream cone. And 30 minutes later, Hannah was asleep and peace was restored in the Kangmobile. The ice cream bribe was really so I could take a nap, but Elise was pretty sure that spelling her name in pretzels and spotting every train and cow that we passed was way yummier than any ice cream cone around.

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