Mom “Vacation.” Yeah, right.
This is grammatically incorrect, Mom Vacation.
Also, it is a cosmic impossibility.
It defies gravity, logic, and all other forms of science and reason.
The mom vacation is not possible.
It’s like an unclear antecedent, dangling modifier, or some other Grammar debacle no one knows or understands.
Packing, organizing, scheduling, juggling… so as to relax?
Still, we are leaving soon on a ten-day trip to New Mexico and Colorado. We will camp, not camp, dine out, dine over an open flame, and we will do it in a caravan of 4 cars, 1 camper, 5 adults, 2 millennials, and 6 under 16.
The negotiations a mom encounters, to prepare for a vacation are much more intense than for any other job on the planet, including pilots, brain surgeons, the president and also – the Pope.
My family sees a suitcase – I see 5 pairs of undies times 5 – plus an extra for each in case of “incidentals.” I have clothing planned for every single moment, including, but not limited to incidents of inclement weather – as well as golf ball size hail and tsunamis – from formal wear to pajamas, and temperatures ranging from 20 to 110 degrees.
I know where your toothbrush is.
Yes, I packed Midol.
No, it’s not for me.
I have a medicine cabinet I carry on my person that masquerades as a Kate Spade purse and yes, it has the heartburn meds for the overindulgence that will take place on 2402 mile trip to my dad’s family reunion.
Got the aloe.
Yes, repellants… mosquitos and otherwise.
Ummm, your swimsuits, check. Nope, I have no idea if I packed one for myself. It is probably for the best.
Yes, Immodium and yes, laxative and gas-x.
Tweezers, blow-dryers, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoos, conditioners, straighteners, curling irons, gels, sprays, deodorants, moisturizers, dehydrators, short socks, tall socks, sandals, boots, jeans, shorts, t-shirts, polos, button downs, powders for chaffing, oils for peeling, pantyhose, heels, flats, razors, shave gel, shave cream, bandaids, retainers, slippers, jammies, and a coffee mug… cause someone won’t drink out of a hotel room glass.
Mascara, waterproof and not.
Lip liner, lip gloss, lip stain, lipstick – red, pink, coral, and twisted berry bliss.
Eyeshadow, brow liners, highlighters, low lighters, concealers, and blush.
I am Vanna White in her vanity.
I am Cheryl Crow in my hippie-ness.
And as a young girl, I loved to play with Barbies. I had one of those fancy pink Barbie trunks where I kept all my plastic friends and their clothes.
I haven’t stopped playing.
The friends just aren’t plastic.
And the trunk just got bigger, and now it’s an uptown Gucci hard shell with a shiny brass lock. The code? BARBIEDOLL.
My husband is my life-size Ken doll… but he isn’t as much fun as my sister’s Ken doll, who has an outfit for everything – golf, camo, Parcheesi, fly fishing, bass fishing, fox hunts, and bar-b-que’s. My Ken won’t wear 90% the stuff I pick. No, my Ken prefers greys and beiges, no prints, and boots only. When we open my magic trunk on this escapade – he is at my mercy. However, I know he has stashed his crocks and socks somewhere in the luggage.
If I don’t call it pink, but West-Texas sunset, will he wear it?
If that’s his only choice, I submit… he will.
He’s going to look so cute! #adorbs
I’ve executed a shoe plan that might very well win me the Nobel Peace Prize.
Black shoes, white shoes, open toe and closed, flip flops, high tops, loafers, loungers, and swim shoes too.
The brain capacity it takes to plan a trip of this magnitude should earn me some kind of honorary doctorate from Harvard or Princeton. Ordinary citizens cannot conceptualize the depth of thought that goes into a 10-day family getaway. I have a printable download of all roadside laundry mats and KOAs with facilities between Lubbock and Gunnison. Yes, I got quarters.
Mom “vacation,” please, more like mom “crossing the Sahara by three-legged camel, with shards of glass in my bra, and a rash on my sassy… hiney, breastfeeding six-year-old triplets.
This is the longest road trip we will have ever taken with our vandals. Sam and Charlie are 7 and 5. And I have every aspect of their lives planned out for this trip. What they’ll wear, eat, drink, and at what longitude and latitude they will slumber, and I have downloaded 29 hours of books on audio for them. It is all carefully orchestrated.
I have an emergency “Vandal 411” study guide for each of the adults on the trip, in the event of separation, fatality, or nervous breakdown, it reads like this:
- Don’t get sunscreen on Sam’s nipples, he’ll lose his mind.
- Don’t let Charlie have more than 3 cups of coffee or he won’t take a nap and he talks to himself in Latin.
- Milk on Sam’s fruit loops but not his frosted flakes. No milk on Charlie’s cereal unless he has Raisin Bran and then only almond milk, specifically on Fridays, but not in his Spider Man pajamas, then only Frosted Mini Wheats with no milk (cow or nut.)
- Sam is allergic to walnuts. Charlie thinks he is allergic to walnuts.
If the stars and my super packing powers are in the precise alignment I believe them to be… my family will have a blast.
I have planned the perfect trip… for them.
I have Dramamine, Phenergan, Xanax, and gum… in other words – be it plane, train, boat or bike – your ears will be popped and your equilibrium and panic disorders will be balanced.
The bills are all paid, the checkbook balances to the penny.
The car seats are moved, secured, and Texas State Trooper approved, we will make provisions at Texas-New Mexico border and again before venturing into Colorado.
I have books on Kindle, audio, paper, and Braille.
I have downloads, uploads, backups, and zips.
Our will is in order. In the event, we die in a fiery crash… please put this on my tombstone: She Packed Well.
I have chargers, power strips, and extension cords – which are also in my purse with the snacks, beverages, and a flask full of “Jami Juice.”
Don’t even… that’s the only thing on this trip I think is mine.
I have a laminated schedule which includes, a meal budget, and fast food, seated fancy, and food truck fare with gluten, soy, and peanut free dining options. Page two is a list of bowel habits for my wayward band of travelers, with twenty-minute variables for incidents of food poisoning and lenience. *See page 9, item 12B for all other occurrences where you can extend your alternatives.
I have Maxis, tampons, liners, and chocolate – dark, milk, and caramel filled.
I have bandaids, anti-itch, anti-inflammatory, ear drops, nose drops, eye drops, antihistamines, Kleenex, Chapstick, and a tourniquet. Also, a travel size defibrillator and 3 left over antibiotic tablets from last year’s ear-infection ER trip… just in case. Don’t judge me.
Ear plugs, nose plug, goggles, floaties, snorkels, and flippers.
Sun glasses, sun hats, visors, ball caps.
Wipes, hand sanitizer, lotions, and balms.
If you can’t find it in my bag, you don’t need it.
If you need it… it is most definitely, in the bag.
Heads up: If you honk the horn one more time, for me to hurry and get in the car – we will have to check another bag… a body bag.
So, here we go… off on a grand adventure. I have your wallet, his Epi pen, her migraine meds and theirs, ID’s, earbuds, headphones, and string cheese.
Change for the parking meters, cash for the camp fees, and traveler’s checks for incidents of lost or stolen purses, wallets, and cars.
I have a plan for the plan when all other plans fail.
Final boarding call… to the countdown to the unpacking that will carry me through until October. Fasten your seat belt, let the “vacation” proceed.
May your floors be sticky and you get stranded on a beach… all by yourself. Love, Jami
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