As we load up the van to spend Christmas with Craig’s mom, it reminded me of a long-distance road trip I took with Sarah Reinhard and our kids a few years ago, to attend the Catholic New Media Conference in Atlanta. Do you need a “Road Trip Survival Kit” to get you through the next few weeks?
If you’ve ever taken a road trip with a van full of kids, you know that there are certain items that you never, ever leave behind. Not if you expect to make it to your destination without one or more children strapped to the roof. Our “Road Trip Survival Kit” has a cooler containing . . .
- Frozen juice pouches (to keep the kids from slurping them all in the first five miles),
- Diet Coke (to keep YOU alert and headache-free),
- PB&J (to toss in the back seat every time a kid spots a McDonalds and whines for sustenance),
- Frozen container full of chili or other dinner you can zap in the hotel microwave (don’t forget the corn chips for scooping), and
- Two bottles of Mike’s Hard Lemonade (for after the kids go to bed).
In addition to the cooler, bag of swim gear (one adult takes the kids to the pool while the other unpacks the room and gets dinner started), and Mystery Bag (full of treats from the Dollar Store, to toss in the back seat at regular intervals to keep the chaos down to a dull roar), there are two more items in my “Travelin’ Mom Roadtrip Kit”: a rosary . . . and a GPS. They stay on my dashboard, always in arm’s reach. After all, a girl never knows when she might need a little prompting to head in the right direction.
It’s been ten years since my husband and I foster-adopted our kids, both of whom have special needs. And in the past eight months, we’ve had to face some extraordinary challenges that have resulted in a kind of mental U-Turn. More and more, I find myself thinking about all those things that I wish someone had thought to tell me ten years ago. Perhaps you have been in the trenches a while, and feel the same way.
If that’s the case, I invite you to join me on this road trip. Rosary and GPS in hand, let’s explore that “road less traveled” . . . together.
What’s the most indispensable component of YOUR “Road Trip Kit”?