A travel story! How 'bout one from this weekend?
So my middle sister moved somewhat recently, from Wisconsin to... a place considerably closer. A place one can drive to and back from in one day. But I still hadn't seen her apartment, since that all happened right around when I was busy having ANOTHER baby. And after that, I... well, I had that little baby. So I was busy. But since he is now at the age where I am comfortable and used to him and he can go three hours or so without starving to death, the kids and I went to see her this weekend, along with my mom, and my youngest sister, and HER baby.
So my mom's minivan was seriously packed to capacity. A little beyond, even, to be quite frank. Like, I was wedged in the very back seat between Addy and Eli's carseats, sitting sideways to keep my hips from going numb, and my feet were buried under a pile of diaper bags. Unrelated to space issues but in keeping with the general theme of "indignities suffered by Sarah during the road trip," I spent a good hour singing and doing hand motions to keep Baby Smith distracted so he didn't cough until he threw up, which is his fun new trick, about which the doctor is unconcerned but we are all a little alarmed.
Anyways, we had tried to leave early, and in that attempt I had sacrificed pouring bowls of cereal and instead we drove through The Devil's Own Lair and got hash browns and one of those cinnamon-bite things to feed the kids. They gobbled it all down, and then settled in to listen to me read them the books I had packed. And then, just as I was beginning to think, "Wow, I need to stop reading; I think I'm getting car sick," Adelay threw up every bit of food in her stomach. Right next to me and a little bit on me and a LOT bit all over her clothes and car seat. Apparently I just kept saying, "Oh!" over and over again because dudes, it just kept coming. I have never seen someone throw up for that long!
Unfortunately we were on a back country road and it took a few minutes to find a place to pull over. That place was of course the grossest, worst smelling gas station ever, and of course the barf had gotten on every article of Addy's clothes, which my mom painstakingly rinsed out, dismissing my protests of, "Oh seriously, can we just throw them AWAY?" Luckily I had brought her extra pants on the off chance she had an accident, so we put those on her, and then I took off my fleece jacket for her to wear, and we called ahead to Rachel to have her buy Addy a clean shirt.
Addy stayed remarkably chipper about the situation, and insisted she felt fine now that the "yucky hash brown" was out of her stomach. We offered to go home but she still wanted to see Aunt Rachel, so we headed out again after nursing both babies in the van and rearranging the car seats so that Addy could be in a captain's chair instead of on the back tire. (Which meant that Jameson, in his much wider carseat, was back there with Eli and me, and this was when I switched to riding ON MY KNEES in the middle of the van.)
Things were smooth sailing from then on, until we tried to get back in the van after having dinner and realized one of the van doors was stuck shut. It's one of the automatic doors you open with a button on your key fob, and it sometimes acts up but you can always at least manually open it. This time, no dice. So from then out we had to get in and out of the van in a VERY particular way to manage all the carseat fastening and snapping of baby seats into their bases and passing of diaper bags and oh my GOSH, we must have looked like clowns spilling out of a toy car. It sure felt like it.
It was still a really fun trip, believe it or not, and at least once we got to Rachel's there was an adult to each kid, which is the perfect ratio in my book. Plus I found adorable stuff for the kids' Easter baskets in World Market and Target, neither of which are available in my hometown, so that was worth it right there. AND the check out guy at World Market flirted with me a little, which hasn't happened in a very long time and which I am directly attributing to My New Hair.