Monday, May 11, 2009

Rules for a Successful Road Trip

I've realized that there are a few things that go out the window when traveling on a long road trip with small children. Below is a list of those things:

1. While I am normally very conscious about what goes into my children's mouths, on car trips i frequently hear myself saying such things as, "How about another sucker?", "more gummi worms?", "anybody want a milk shake?", "how about more fries?", etc. It is appalling.

2. Though we have fairly strict rules about how much t.v. our kids can watch per day, on road trips, my kids watch hours worth of movies. We do try to chit chat and play games in between, but, IT'S TWELVE HOURS...and they are 5 and 2...what's a mom to do?!?

3. Bella has been potty trained for four months now, and so, of course, we always encourage her use of the toilet. On this particular road trip, i found myself saying things like, "Just go in your diaper, Bella. It's okay. You need to just go in your diaper." (She never did, by the way. That stubborn little thing made me pull over about 45,000 times. can I complain about something like that?)

4.I generally try to restrict myself to, at most, two or three soda's a week...and that is a lot. On road trips, two or three a day is more like it. I have all kinds of ways of justifying getting a Dr. Pepper instead of a Powerade or something. And, they sound just as ridiculous to myself as they would to you.

5. Finally, while I generally believe that when a child cries to get his or her way, you should not give into this behavior, on a road trip, my basic rule of thumb is, STOP THE CRYING AT ALL COSTS! I can't take it! Give that kid whatever it wants, and quick!

As far as I can tell, we don't have any long term discipline issues regarding these things (except maybe that I have to wean myself off of soda for a few weeks following a trip) but I am afraid that my kids have totally figured out these road rules, or the lack thereof. And that can't be good. Oh well, I guess when you are taking 12 hour trips to Texas and Oklahoma a few times a year, you'll do whatever it takes to make sure you all get there in one piece. And for me, that means loosening up on the rules, getting everyone sugared up and in a movie coma until they pass out from exhaustion. That's normal, right?


Melodie said...

so funny! you're much braver than i . . . making that LONG roadtrip as a single mom so often.

Amanda said... could do it! Of course, I much prefer Loren going along with me. It DOES make things easier. But, i can't say that the rules change any when he does. :)

Allison said...

sounds like the rules from when we drove to Crested Butte on Spring Break! Thomas watched the same movie probably 25 times (one way!!).

The Coopers said...

so funny! and so true. lots of great advice too for us when we drive this august to TN and NC. candy, movies and no rules!!we loved the visit!

schwalka said...

totally true! Sometimes we just hand Luke an ENTIRE bag of Quaker Cheddar snack mix. Its gone soon, but we are all happy.

Jess said...

You are bringing back memories of our 3x/year trips to Texas during the six years we lived in Missouri. I feel your pain!