Monday, December 19, 2005

Road Trip

We head out first thing Wednesday morning.

Eleven hundred miles in our bright red Honda CRV. (The old van is just not up for the trip-- burning oil, worn tires, a flickering ABS light... you get the picture.)

The CRV has issues of her own-- brakes that squeak, a transmission that hesitates before shifting gears. But she's a newer vehicle (only 7 years old), and she has all-wheel drive.

Over 20 hours on the road. With two kids sitting practically on top of each other.

With all of our stuff.

Sounds a bit nuts, doesn't it?

But then there are those games we made up years ago, and always rediscover on a long drive. Like "Who am I thinking of?" (sort of like 20 questions). Or the family favorite, "Who's the bigger star?" Some examples: Brad Pitt or Ben Affleck? Spiderman or Batman? Roald Dahl or JK Rowling? Diamonds or gold? Apples or bananas?

The possibilities are endless; the discussion/defense of a choice, always lively.

There's also that gradually changing landscape-- from gently rolling hills to a flat, snow-covered prairie to the city-scapes of Chicago and later, Cleveland, to the larger, more majestic hills of upstate New York...

There's the night or two in a hotel. The four of us camping together in one room... jumping like fools on beds we don't own.

And then, there is Christmas in Massachusetts. With all six of my siblings. And all 15 of our children together for the first time in two years.

Indeed, I can't wait to begin. Just two more sleeps...


Allison said...

When I was 12, my mother, my younger brother (who was 7 at the time), and I drove 1,000 miles from Portland, Oregon to Fresno, CA over 2 days. Our favorite game was playing "Scavenger Hunt." We wrote down a huge list of things that you could see from the freeway: fast food restaurants, stores, animas, buildings (churches, schools, etc.), random numbers on license plates. Each time we saw one, we'd call it out and then mark a tally on our sheet. I'm not sure if we had a winner. But because I sat in the front seat, I found every single McDonalds between my house and grandma's- all 24 of them. Fun times, indeed.

Shannon said...

Jeff and I were talking about driving to Virginia to visit his mom for the holidays. We did it once and there is no way I could survive another trip with 3 kids.

I commend you on your cheerful outlook and may I suggest a DVD player for insurance LOL.

Have a great trip. I'll be thinking of you here in NH.

Jamie said...

Have a great trip Sandra! AND, have a wonderful holiday with all of your family - it sounds exciting :)

Hope Santa is good to all of you this year!

Vivian said...

Have a safe, blessed trip. Can't wait to hear the great stories when you get back.

David said...

Sandra, I love how you sandwich my beloved hometown of Cleveland between the cityscapes of Chicago and the majestic hills of New York. But I forgive you: the straight shoot through the farmlands of the Mid West makes wretched driving. Good luck with the youngins!

julia said...

Ooh, you're coming to Massachusetts? Cool! Wave when you go thru Sturbridge, ok? I'm very close to there.

We used to play the license plate game - I've heard of people doing this as bingo, too, which sounds fun. Trivial Pursuit cards also help pass the time a bit. MadLibs were always a big hit when we used to make the trip from Mass. to Indiana every summer.

Nicole P said...

Have a wonderful trip, Sandra. I love road trips!

Erica said...

Have a great trip - chaos and all! Those car rides (as hellish as they seem in the moment) make for some of the best memories and stories to tell for years...

Oh and I bow to the laptop/dvd player god/goddess. It's the only way we endure 8 hr rides with a toddler twice a year. That and post-it notes... but I think your kids are out of that stage ;-)

Be safe and have a great holiday!

Violet said...

Happy trails, happy holidays, happy all to you and your beautiful family.

Elizabeth said...

Have a great time on your road trip! David and I just got back from a few (Denver to Cleveland 1300 miles!). We played the cow game- whoever has the most cows on their side of the road by the end of the trip wins! David won that time, but I think I can beat him next time!

Have a merry christmas!

Johnboy said...

Six siblings and fifteen!

Growing up an only child, I have only experienced sibling dynamics through my own two children.

Sandra, I wish a very merry christmas to you and yours.

Safe travels!

Penny said...

Have fun, Sandra. Wishing you good sugars.

E said...

That picture make's me think of the James Taylor song "Sweet Baby James."

Now the first of December was covered with snow
And so was the turnpike from Stockbridge to Boston
Lord, the Berkshires seemed dream-like on account of that frosting
With ten miles behind me and ten thousand more to go

Have a wonderful trip and a good holiday.

Kerri. said...

Have a great holiday, Sandra!