We are on vacation. One would think we would leave our reality behind and have an other-worldly trip of bliss whilst enjoying our days of together time in some mountains not our own.
Ha! One would be wrong. Very wrong. Because, really, nothing brings out Reality like a trip with three small kids. Shall I start with the never-ending drive? I could. But it would be so depressing. And long. The short version is the drive wasn’t. We’ve had some trips where we average 50 miles per hour over the course of 529-mile journey, stops included. This time we averaged just under 20 mph. Ryan tells me we could have taken the stage coach to make better time. Now, we did stop for an overnight in a hotel where we all got some really good sleep. However. That’s not the only problem.
Why is it that two girls who have to be begged to empty their bladders so as to maintain health and wellness every other day of the year needed to stop every half-hour during our 665 mile journey? Why is it that it took us two hours to drive the first 50 miles? Oh. I know why. It’s construction season in my home state. And we had to drive past all those pretty orange barrels. It had to be simply a barrel display, because I didn’t see a lick of construction.
All in all it took us 27.5 hours to arrive at our destination, 2 hours of which were spent listening to the song “Remarkable Cows.” Now, I realize I can’t be trusted with numbers, but that is a factual account. 2 hours. One song. The way I figure it, since Ruthie sits in the wayyyy back of the minivan by herself, she gets to pick the music. And she really, really likes “Remarkable Cows” and screams at everyone to sing it with her. Fun times. If you’re wondering what music accompanied the other 13 hours in the car, that would be “Mine Favorite Bob Songs.” AKA, Veggie Tales. I did get to listen to one whole Ella Fitzgerald CD (during which Hannah pointed out that one of the songs sounded like the music from Dumbo and I thought that was pretty cool) and, if I recall correctly, two other CD’s of my choosing. Just one time through with each of them. What we did learn, during the last 20 minutes of the journey, is that Ruthie’s quite the fan of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.
Oh. I wasn’t going to talk about the drive. I guess I did. Oops.
What I was going to talk about is the fact that all three of our kids were in bed by 7:40 last night. Asleep. So I went out to get some Ben & Jerry’s for Ry and me (we eat ice cream pretty much every night before bed. And sometimes I actually wonder why I’ve gained all this weight since marrying this man.). I also took advantage of the fact that in the state we’re visiting one can buy Adult Beverages pretty much anywhere. I think the lemonade stands are likely selling the hard stuff.
So, here we were, Ry and me, getting the kids back on their regular sleep schedule, ready to hunker down and enjoy some booze and frozen, sweetened fatty goodness, and lo and behold! the Boy has a night terror. Followed by his mostly-conscious-but-still-not-right crying jag. So, he came down to sit with us on the couch for a bit. Then we sent him back to bed. His head can’t have had more time than to just touch his pillow, when Hannah came walking out of her bedroom (they’re sleeping in separate rooms this trip), whimpering that she couldn’t sleep. The timing was impeccable. Then they repeated it, once more, for good measure: Hannah to bed, Isaac back downstairs, like a seamless passing of a baton. If you saw it on a movie screen, you would have declared it contrived. Unless, of course, you have children. Then you’d just call it Reality.
I so wanted to end my blog post there. I really did. Because it’s so pithy. And witty. But you know what? It’s not Reality. Because the reality is, I’m writing this on Sunday evening, when “last night” took place, so that I don’t take time away from my kids to write it on Monday, and it’s 10:20 PM and I last saw a kid about 5 minutes ago when Hannah came out of her room for the I-don’t-know-how-many-th time. She had been out and back in and back out and hungry and fed a cheese stick (teeth be damned, tonight) and sent back to bed then back out and lonely (despite the fact that her little sister is in the bunk bed beneath her, where she begged to have her sleep, refusing to share the big bed with her upstairs) and back to bed upstairs in the same room with Isaac (could that be the problem? She’s used to sleeping with Isaac?) and back downstairs and hot so back to her original bed and back out because her water bottle got stuck behind the bed (somehow, I’m not sure how).
I’d like to yell and threaten and throw a fit, but the Reality is, it’s late and I’m exhausted, but you don’t see me going upstairs to bed. Nope. I’m too charged up with being in a new and strange place, it sounds funny and smells strange and we have a big day to look forward to tomorrow and the bed is squishy. And I still have my usual bed-mate, and don’t have to sleep alone. It’s hard to get upset with a five-year-old girl who’s having the same sleep problem I am but who isn’t allowed to help herself unwind and relax with the use of an Adult Beverage.
Poor baby. I think she needs a snuggle. I do.
If you go to soggymommy, you can find more Ministry of Reality blog posts. And you can add your own to her Blog Hop thing. I can’t figure out how to add the thing to my post.