These are letters to Jack, my son, and my daughter, Audrey. You have given me the gift of motherhood. This is just a little gift back. I want to share my experiences with you of your childhood from my perspective of watching you grow - of being your Mom.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Chicago - the Road trip, not the musical
We recently got back from a trip to Chicago. I think that the bright idea blossomed as so many do in the best case scenario images in the mind. The idea of getting away to a nice hotel where there were new activities to do with the kids, staying in the city and having breakfast made for us in the mornings, etc. - it all sounds so great, doesn't it?
Truth is - it really was that great, but the little details ground you sometimes. For example, who would have forseen that you, Jack, would have major nosebleeds spraying blood across pillows and sheets so that I'm sure the maids wondered which closet they would find the body in when they came to clean the room.
Also, Audrey, you had one of your worst baby sleeping episodes ever when I so intelligently mixed overstimulating you with coffees in the morning and spinach in my omelet, too, as well as more than a healthy daily dose of cheese. You were in agony and cried, farted and spit up throughout the night broken up only by waking to the bloodbath that your brother was experiencing, so we had it all - poop, puke, blood and pee.Also, I know so many things have changed over the course of time so that you can generally say that our lives are made easier than our parents were by the conveniences we have, but I have to say that the road trip has gotten harder. We have very important safety laws now that keep you and your sister securely fastened throughout the entire length of a car trip, but I remember trips with my parents where we were scattered throughout our moving vehicle, sometimes sleeping on the seats, but sometimes sleeping on the raised area behind the seats or on the floor of the car, or anywhere we could squeeze and there was much hopping around from one seat to the other and climbing in the "way back" and playing games and movement. All that seemed to help with the torture of a child when they are not able to move for extended periods of time and the near explosion of energy that they become by the time they are finally able to break free of confines and move again.Sure, we have DVD players in the cars, but this is not a new item to kids nowadays, so the novelty? It's kind of worn off.But our trip was very fun - exhausting - but very fun! :) We drove till bedtime and woke the next morning to a great breakfast of anything we wanted (you chose a pink donut amongst other things, but that was the big attraction to breakfast for you), and then we headed to the Chicago Children's Museum and took a ride on the big Ferris Wheel on Navy Pier (we had to pay for a ticket for Audrey - really! A six week old baby required a full price ticket!), we walked through the city and got ice cream for Jack and the next day, we spent at Shedds Aquarium until we left later that afternoon.The whole trip was really tremendous because the sleeplessness and the nosebleeds? They would have happened at home, too. And the car ride torture? We got creative. A wonderful family vacation and I'm very excited for the next!