Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Road trip to see extended family

We headed out on Saturday to my nephew's birthday party in Lockport, IL. Every time we go on a road trip I learn a little bit more about what things J likes and how best to manage him in the car. We packed a huge toy bag with coloring books, crayons (of course), a sing along toy, lots of cars and trucks, his Thomas trains, several of his favorite books right now and bristle blocks. More than he needs for he car ride, but he'll be able to play with these at my sister's where we'll stay overnight. J did really pretty good on the way down. He did drop things a lot and so to minimize the upsets I did do a lot of picking things up. We stopped at an oasis and I got him some fries. He took his fry and was pretending it was a mustache (I have a fry mustache mommy). That was funny.

When we got there J eased into playing right away. He had lots of fun. It was like Christmas for him, exploring all of his cousin Henry's toys. I could tell he's getting more comfortable with our extended family. He didn't need to be by my side as much. My sister's mother-in-law Mama Lietz read a book while J and Henry sat on her lap and cousin Blake listened too. It was nice to be able to help out in the kitchen and then get some time to chat with my family too and not be worrying about what J was up to. During dinner, he ate outside with the big kids at the picnic table and had no baby chair!

Later, I caught the tail-end of a big pillow fight/wrestling match daddy was having with cousin Blake and J was getting in there too. After opening gifts and then having cake I would think he'd have been exhausted, but he was still going. I don't think we left the party until 10pm to head over to my oldest sister's house where we stayed the night. J fell asleep in the car and was out as soon as we put him in the pack and play. I stayed up talking to my sister until about 1:30 in the morning! There was a lot of reflecting on where I had been the past couple summers with my depression and the joy she has of seeing me now, healthy and enjoying little J. There were so many ways my family was there to help me out. I find it's always good for me to talk about it.

Well, I didn't end up getting much sleep as J was up crying at 5am. I think because he was in a place he didn't recognize. He came into bed with us and half slept until we got up around 8:30. We had a really nice day of a homemade breakfast, L watching soccer while I read a book. J got to play with Uncle RoRo and later Aunt Kelly took him downstairs to play and I tried to nap. It was a really warm and humid day but after lunch/dinner we took a walk by their nature center. J wanted to see the cranes. They have two sandhill cranes in an outdoor enclosure. He loves to hear them do what sounds like honking. Finally, we got back on the road and L blessed me by driving again. I managed things for J but this time was a lot more challenging. He was really irritable and wouldn't sleep and kept crying over one thing or another. I found if I sang "hush little baby" to him he would calm down for a while.


tea said...

It does sound like you had a nice time! I think our sons would have such a good time together. They seem to like so many of the same things. We haven't gone on a long road trip yet, but it sounds like you did a really good job preparing. Gald you had some fun family time! :)

Tracey Monroe said...

Yes, I really bet they would too.

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