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Anatomy of A Road Trip

June 19, 2009

So we planned to come down to San Diego yesterday. It’s a  bit of challenge to get everyone packed loaded and in the car ready to go before the designated time,  but it usually gets a little easier each time. Prior to preschool, it was fairly easy because we would get up at our regular time and hit the road around 9 a.m.

Now that the Big One is in preschool it’s a bit more challenging. We usually leave Thursday after preschool so that we can do something fun on Friday (usually we go to the Zoo). The challenge with leaving after preschool is the traffic factor. Leaving anytime after noon can be disastrous. First we hit afternoon traffic in Corona and then it’s the beginning of rush hour by the time we get to San Diego.

Yesterday was even more challenging because the Little One is taking Toddler University, a cool little class series on base. It’s from 10 – 10:45 a.m.. It’s lots of fun, but puts a definite crimp in my pack-the-car-time.

So yesterday was supposed to go like this:

7 a.m.       FixItMommy up and showered. One cup of coffee in my system

7:30 a.m.        Big One up dressed and eating breakfast (a little snack before the Father’s Day breakfast at preschool was the plan)

8 a.m.       The Husband and the Big One go to Father’s Day breakfast and The Little One up, dressed and eating breakfast

8 ~ 9:45a.m.     FixItMommy packs the car

9:45 ~ 11:30 a.m.         FixItMommy and Little One travel to and attend class.

11:30 ~ 11:45 a.m.     Pack cooler and laptops, cameras, etc. All the stuff I didn’t want in my car all morning.

11:45 a.m.     Leave to pick-up Big One from preschool

12:05 p.m.     Pick up Gracie Lou from home and hit the road.

What actually happened is this:

7 a.m.     FixItMommy up and showered. One cup of coffee in my system

8 a.m.        Big One up and attempting to get dressed and crying because she couldn’t find the arm holes in her shirt

8:15a.m.        The FixItMommy is taking orders for McDonald’s for breakfast for the one niece and her boyfriend

8:25 a.m.        Both kids loaded in Mom-Mobile to head to preschool, The Husband follows in his car so that I can come home and pack my car without having to change car seats.

8:45 a.m.           Niece and boyfriend eating breakfast. Niece #2 on Farm Town. FixItMommy making pancakes because my children will not eat normal lunch foods in car on the way down to San Diego.

9:15 a.m.         Pancakes done, start packing car.

9:30 a.m.        The Husband cannot get tickets to Magic Mountain that were purchased online to print (nieces, boyfriend and Husband are going to Magic Mountain while I drive the troops down to San Diego)

9:30 – 9:45 a.m.      Fight with printer to get it to work. One would think between three teenagers and one engineer someone else could have fought with the computer and printer, but nope it was the FixItMommy. Meanwhile, the Husband is afraid to press on with packing the car because he knows he will do it wrong.

9:45 a.m.        FixItMommy gives up on computer and printer because Little One is supposed to be at class in 15 minutes, it’s a 25 minute drive to the Base.

10:15-10:45 a.m.     FixItMommy and Little One in class.

10:50a.m.       FixItMommy talks to the Husband on the phone. He informs me that while trying to lock Gracie Lou in our bedroom, she peed all over the carpet. (it was too hot to lock her outside, she has not earned free reign of my house and her crate was already packed in my car. So our bedroom is the best option)

11:25 a.m.       Let Gracie Lou out and check that there is no more dog pee in my bedroom and that the Husband did a sufficient job cleaning up.

11:30 a.m.     FixItMommy once again resumes packing the Mom-Mobile.

11:45 a.m.        Car is packed and it’s time to pick Big One up from preschool. Go on a search mission to find Little One’s shoes and socks that she took off while I was packing the car.

11:50 a.m.       Try to find Little One to get her shoes and socks on to go pick up Big One.

11:53 a.m.          Find Little One butt naked in the bathroom, saying “I need to go potty!”

11:55 a.m.          Coax the Little One to get clothes, shoes and socks on so that we can get Big One.

12:10 p.m.           Pick up Big One (10 minutes late). Head home to get the dog.

12:20 p.m.              Everyone is in the car. I realized I forgot the girls’ swimming suits. So I go back to get them.

12:30 p.m.             I decide to go to Jack in the Box for a burger for the road. So did everyone else in town, apparently.

12:45 p.m.            Get burger and ready to hit the road when I hear, “Is this McDonald’s? Are you getting us a cookie?”

12:47 p.m.            Figure out that I always bribe the girls to be good with chocolate chip cookies from McDonald’s (it’s 200 miles, okay!).

12:50 p.m.            Get in the Drive-Thru line at McD’s to get cookies.

1 p.m.                Finally start heading south on the freeway, knowing full well when we hit Corona at 2:30 p.m. I am toast. And then when I hit San Diego at 4 p.m. I am in bigger trouble.


It never quite goes as planned. But the girls, dog and I made it just fine.



The husband and three teenagers still are not here … on Friday morning. One would think that the Husband would balance out the three teenagers and all would be okay. That is unless the Husband loses his car key somewhere inside Magic Mountain… UGH! What a day.

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