We just got back from our family vacation to sunny Tampa, and I thought I’d share a little bit about how we did it. Now, the drive from N.C. to this part of F.L. is about 10 1/2 hours. We’d never attempted a drive this long, and we were pretty nervous about it. The longest the boys had ever driven in the car before was 4 1/2 hours, and they were melting into hysterical puddles by the end, even with plenty of snacks and videos for the oldest…
Soo… David thought maybe we should try an overnight drive. I was even more nervous about trying this than a long day drive. What if they didn’t sleep? What if they were awake and crying all. night. long? It didn’t help that my friend Rachel had this happen to her on an overnight drive to N.Y. To quote her: “I remember thinking to myself, ‘This must be what hell is like. I want to die.’” Unquote.
Needless to say, this did not inspire confidence. But… we were crazy enough to try it anyway. We put the kids to bed at 8:00 and woke them at 9 to put them in their carseats in p.j’s. We thought that this would help them go back to sleep more easily once they were in the car. Hah! They were awake, but happy and quiet. Seth sang softly to himself on and off for hours.
I drove the first few hours, listening to a book on tape on the Ipod. We switched drivers at a gas station and kept going. The boys slept on and off. Despite being stopped for an hour and half at 1:30 a.m. for a horrible wreck on I-95, things went really well the whole way. If they boys woke up, they were happy and quiet before drifting back to sleep. It was amazingly good.
We got to Tampa in time for breakfast, both boys took morning naps, and then we all took an afternoon nap and went to bed a little earlier than we might’ve otherwise. The recovery wasn’t too bad.
The recovery after getting back was a little tougher because we were all more tired from not getting as much sleep on the trip as we normally would at home. Evan is also battling a bug, so he whined a little more in the night on the drive. But it was still a pretty pleasant trip and recovery.
Doing it this way means we’ll be going to Tampa more often because its not horribly painful, and I won’t be dreading the trip… though Vance and Terri might. We’ve heard that their whole family is down with Evan’s nausea bug. We’re sooooo sorry. We love you, guys.