Monday, August 23, 2010

Reno was a Gamble

"Bump" was putting it mildly... traveling
with two kids should come with it's own hazard sign!

Two months ago, my husband says to me, "How would you like to go to Reno?"
I looked at my two month old son, who had finally stopped screaming to be fed and was now nursing contentedly. I quickly responded, "Sure. Sounds fun."

Famous last words.

For some reason, when Robert first suggested this, I imagined it would only be the two of us headed to Reno for the weekend. Why I thought I could leave a breastfeeding four month old behind was beyond me. Obviously sleep deprivation was still in full force.

Upon further investigation, I found out that my husband's best friend, Eddie, was going to be at a conference in Reno. Eddie moved to Colorado about four years ago; since Reno is only a few hours away, it seemed like a great idea to meet him there. It was also during this conversation I realized both Crumb Crunchers would be coming with us.

You know what? It still sounded like fun.

As the weekend approached, Rob and I planned very carefully what we would bring and how we would cram it all into the back of the SUV. As is typical, we were allotted half of a small suitcase. The other half of the suitcase and 47 cubic feet of SUV were allotted for the children. We debated on whether or not we would need to rent a U-haul trailer for the two day trip. (Kidding! Sort of...)

Come to find out, we have better packing skills than we thought. We even managed to fit the double stroller inside the vehicle. The car was packed and ready to roll on Friday night, with the exception of all those last minute items you don't want to pack until just before you leave. You know, toothbrushes. Pillows. The kids.

I haven't woken up to an alarm since Mark was born. Certainly this was a momentous occasion, to have the alarm blaring at 4 am. Robert and I were almost giddy with excitement. We haven't been on a road trip since last October, when we went to Monterey for my birthday.

(You know, the one where we were asleep in the hotel room by nine p.m. because I was pregnant and exhausted? Remember? It was the time Robert ended up getting food poisoning from the seafood on the pier... You still don't recall? Oh. Right. I wasn't blogging yet. Trust me. Our last road trip was GREAT.)

Our plan was to be on the road by five. Thirty minutes to shower and do last minute packing, thirty minutes to nurse the baby, and then... we'd be on our way! We hoped to arrive in Reno around nine, just in time for a nice breakfast with Eddie.

We left at six. We arrived in Reno four and a half hours later. I was starving, and Gracie had been saying "poo-poo" since the state line...

We left at six because we took our sweet time getting our rear ends out the door. As excited as we were, we weren't about to start the day griping at each other to hurry, or doling out punishment to Gracie for wanting to dote over her new step stool.

(The minute she saw it that morning, I knew we had made a mistake. We should
have waited until Monday to bring it into the house. Too late now!
No, she couldn't be bothered with putting her pants back on
before trying to reach the faucet.)

After feeding the baby, getting milk and waffles ready, and allowing Grace to sit, stand, and even try to climb inside her new step stool, we finally made it out of the driveway.

The first part of the trip went smashingly. I just knew this was going to be fun!
Mark was asleep before we hit the freeway, and Gracie was gazing out the window, quietly watching the world go by as she worked to wake up. An hour later the foothillls gave way to towering pines, reminding us of the lake we love to visit each summer. Grace had finished her milk and waffle, was quietly playing with her "woof, woof" and reading books. I was snapping pictures and chatting with Robert. All was well with the world, and we were only an hour off schedule.

Just before reaching the top of the mountain, I looked back to ask Gracie how she was doing. She looked fine, but I noticed a small amount of spit up on her shirt... Wait a minute. Mark is the only one in the family who is supposed to spit up.

Five minutes later we found ourselves here:

This is the last rest stop before reaching the Nevada state line. Apparently, I have a child who gets car sick. Or at least should not eat graham crackers, waffles and milk and then read a good book just before heading into the mountains.

Gracie was surprisingly good through the entire ordeal. She whimpered just a bit, as she ended up completely car sick just moments before we pulled off the road. We could only thank the Lord the rest stop and the car sickness coincided as they did, because the next place to stop was over thirty minutes away.

Mommy took care of Gracie in the rest room, while daddy took care of the car seat. And the clothing. And the blankie. And the doggie. And... well, you get the picture:

Right about this time was when Mark decided he needed some attention too, so I nursed him while we waited for Gracie's car seat cover to dry out a little. Gracie had a great time at the rest stop; but soon enough she donned her sunglasses, and was ready to get back on the road:

It actually worked out fine, as we probably would have needed to stop at some point anyway to feed the baby. We strapped Grace back into the car seat sans clothes and car seat cover, figuring this would make it easier to hose her down at the next stop if the need arose. She didn't seem to know that rest stops weren't made for exactly this sort of thing, and was none the worse for wear:

Thankfully, the most excitement we had after this was trying to figure out how to get luggage, strollers, play pens, pillows and all the other gear into an elevator with a labrador retriever. Oh, that story will have to wait until next time.

We arrived in Reno with all the excitement we'd started out with, and only a mild odor coming from the very back of the car.

Now if only the trip home had gone that well...


Tracey said...

Vomit is gross. Just saying.

My dad lives in Reno, so when we only had one kid, they expected us to go visit them. J's first trip he screamed from the summit into town. I am sure it was his ears, but he got himself so worked up that even after his ears must have cleared, he was still screaming. Your trip actually sounds like more fun. :)

Sunshine SAHM said...

Oh, Tracey, Tracey... but you haven't read about the return trip yet! :)
We did have a good time, just wish I'd gotten more sleep and done a little less chasing of a two year old in a casino. She LOVED the slots, I kept chasing her away from them. She didn't win anything or I would have let her keep playing.

Kim said...

What Lab retriever?? We are glad our kids are not the only ones who get car sick and throw up all over themselves and their car seat. Dramamine or Benadryl...great stuff!