Mom...how much longer?

My goodness if Henry had asked me one more time how many more hours we had on our nine hour trip to Tampa I think I might have had to throw my shoe at him.  (And I was wearing a pair shoes with 4 1/2 inch heels.)  Our standard answer whenever we go somewhere and a child asks how much longer we have, no matter how close we are, is two hours.  Since we had a nine hour drive time I had to lengthen the time to five hours.  Why is it whenever we're making a long trip somewhere I always feel like the Griswolds in National Lampoon's 'Vacation'?

Nine hours is a long time in a car, with four children.  We're making our biannual trip to see my brother and his family.  My nephew, Henry, is five months old & the cutest little chunky monkey you could ever imagine.  Oh, I just want to eat his cheeks.  Elizabeth and I are going to be fighting over him.  Big Hopson had to stay at home and work, so this is just me and the kiddos.

Harry & Henry ended up sitting in the middle row of my Suburban.  Bad, that was just a bad idea.  They are like oil and water.  Here's an example why: 

Henry asked for some gum an hour into our trip.  Ok, no problem.  Here you go Hen, a new pack of Trident layers, yum.  In case you've never chewed trident layers, it has a plastic wrapper over the gum.  I wish it didn't, but it does.  Henry is working hard to get the plastic off, and didn't realize there was a simple little pull tab that would help him have it off in about 2 seconds.  Harry is yelling for Henry to give him the gum so he can get the wrapper off.  Of course Henry will not hand the gum over, and  I told Harry to be patient and let Henry learn how to do it himself.  Sometimes you have to do things the hard way to realize you need to look to see if there is an easier way.  (I would rather him learn it over a pack of gum instead of something big.  Right?)  Harry is yelling at Henry to give him the pack.  I tell Harry to cool it and let Henry do it.  He says in a very loud and forceful voice:  "BUT I ASKED HIM NICELY!" 

Um, well, ok Harry.  Just because you ask him in your version of 'nicely' doesn't mean you're going to get your way.  First of all,  you didn't ask him nicely, and second, you're not going to yell at me telling me you did when I heard your whole conversation with him.  Patients...patients is a virtue.  (I don't pray for patients anymore, God always gives me something to test it, I pray for strengh instead.)  Eight more hours in the car at this point.  Great.  I came very close to turning around and going home. 

You'll be glad to know we all made it, in one piece, and every child alive.  That's code for I didn't leave one child on the side of the road or at a rest stop on purpose;I didn't have to beat anyone within an inch of their lives (I wouldn't do that anyway, it's a southern figure of speech for a spanking); and they didn't kill each other.  So I would say it was a good trip down.  :)

We are going to have a blast while we're here.  We're going to Busch Gardens, AirHeads, and we're going to just hang with the fam.  We leave Monday to go home, and here's praying for clear skies and smooth sailing!  But I'll worry about that on Monday. 

Celebrating Life!
~ashley

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