We successfully made it home after our road trip. Bob pointed out to me that we drove 323 miles south of home, not just 275 miles. It was a good trip in general. More fun than I expected, and the amount of work with the twins was as much as I anticipated. Both Bob and I have more confidence taking the kids out of town and can’t wait to go on another road trip soon.
I am not going to talk about all the details of the trip, but I do want to point out a few things I have learned about us as parents and about the kids in no particular order.
- I couldn’t pack or prepare the kids’ lunch/drinks/snacks for the day if the kids were in the hotel room with us even if Bob was watching them. Okra would want to stick to my legs so much that I had a hard time moving around the kitchen.
- Bob and I make a good team. We decided that he would take the kids out on a stroll so I could work the most efficiently in the hotel room by myself. Every time I needed to get something done or have a moment to myself, Bob pushed the kids to the ocean, the train station to see trains, or to the nearby playground.
- Okra truly loves trains. Every time he saw a train, his face was beaming with a big smile. Bob is so smitten that he and his son share the same passion.
- I am very grateful that the kids proved to be very adaptable. They were in an unfamiliar environment but they seemed to have gotten used to the changes quite quickly. Bunny napped and slept through the night without a problem. After crying for 15 minutes for the first night, Okra cried for 2 seconds on the second night, and just went to bed calmly the rest of the nights there. On the car ride back home, Okra only cried for less than 10 minutes versus losing it for more than 30 on the way there. Bunny did not cry on either car rides.
- Even though the kids were adaptable, we largely followed their routines so the interruptions of the schedules would be minimal. Their nap were pushed back for a little, but was still around similar timeframe. They always went down for the night at around 7:30pm. Being in the same timezone really helped.
- We chose a hotel suite with a living room, kitchen, and a bedroom with a bathroom inside of it rather than an Airbnb or vacation home rental. This is mostly because 1) we had a bad experience with Airbnb, 2) I love love love having daily cleaning service, 3) a hotel suite is smaller than an apartment or a house so the area that we had to childproof is smaller, but has enough space for the kids to roam around, 4) having a kitchen is a must for washing dishes and storing perishable food such as milk. It worked out really well for us, and we are going to choose something similar in the future, ideally with two bedrooms so that we don’t have to hide in our bedroom after 7:30pm like thieves while the kids sleep in the living room.
- When you are on a trip, some rules get thrown out the window. We never let our kids have screen time while eating out. Until this trip. No amount of entertaining was enough to keep them quiet. We desperately wanted them to not disturb other patrons. We caved and let them watch nursery rhymes or cartoons. And we didn’t feel guilty especially when we were both hungry and just wanted to finish and go. We didn’t care if others judged us. It was for survival and sanity while away from home.
- Bob and I both still hate touching sand but the kids loved it. We took them to the beach to play in the sand one morning and they had a blast! Kudos to Bob who got down on his hands and knees to play with the kids despite hating the feeling of touching sand. I guess we love the kids more than we love cleanliness. Haha. The kids had quite a few bite of the sand and also tasted some rocks. Yum…. (not…)
- I love my own bed. And I hate eating out many nights in a row. I chose to make dinner the day after we came back… My body just craved homemade food.
That was a glorious day! So glad we made it out there.