We have made the trip up and back down the lengthy and oh-so-boring Interstate 95 dozens of times in our seven years of marriage and several times during my two years of college prior to that. It has run the gambit from painfully uneventful to regrettably exciting.
At Christmastime it always seems to carry an extra air of excitement. Of course. It's Christmastime.
The events that I am about to describe don't necessarily have anything to do with Maryland, or the trip up here, or even Christmas - but now you know the setting. And here is a random collection of some of the more hilarious, more random, sometimes sweet things that have happened thus far on the days leading up to and during our week-long adventure.
In the form of a quiz instead of a list - just to shake things up a bit.
Question: When handed a bookbag and instructed to pack some toys to help entertain her for the 12-hour drive to Grandmom and Grandpop's house, what does Abby pack?
Answer: 4 pairs of socks, a glue stick, half a dozen 1x1 mega blocks pieces, a pencil, and 3 fairies of various sizes. Just a little more evidence as to the randomness of Abby. As if you didn't already know. By the way, Abby has absolutely no need for a glue stick on a 12-hour drive. Especially without the inclusion of necessary paper. Dangerous. At least her feet would be warm. Really warm.
Question: "Why can't I bring my globe?" (Of course, posed by Ben.)
Answer: Because the van is full enough with just clothes and personal items for our family of five on a non-Christmas trip that when you add in the Christmas presents (hidden ever so sophisticatedly in black trash bags), you're lucky you can still get to your seat, let alone sit in it. It probably goes without saying we don't have room for a globe. Plus, when you pose the question during the trip, "Where is it 6 o'clock when it's 5 o'clock here?" I can pick at you by saying, "If you'd have brought your globe, I could tell you. Geez, Ben. Why didn't you pack it?"
Question: Which of my three children chose to stay awake for all but three hours of our overnight drive?
Answer: The toddler. It wasn't bad, per se. She contentedly sat in her seat, occasionally talking to herself, looking out the window, not even begging so much as a toy. It was, perhaps, one of the cutest, sweetest things I'd seen in a while - but - it would have been better if she'd have just gone to sleep and stayed that way.
Question: "Why is there snot on your knee, Abby?"
Answer: "I bless you'd too hard."
Question: What is Sarah's favorite Christmas song?
Answer: Angels We Have Heard on High We know this because during the Christmas Eve service, immediately following the singing of this song, during the period of silence when everyone is taking their seats, Sarah clapped and shouted "Yay!!!" at the top of her lungs. According to Sam (who had the privilege of
Question: Who always gets neglected on Christmas?
Answer: Thanks to Ben's homemade gift for Santa - no one. Ben painstakingly drew and colored a picture for the jolly, old elf so that "everyone in the world would get a present on Christmas - even Santa."
Question: Saddest but sweetest thing I've ever seen on Christmas Eve?
Answer: My seven year old sobbing out of fear Santa was going to skip our house because the four year old sister he was sharing a pull-out sofa with wouldn't stop talking and go to sleep. I have to say, this was tough. It was horrible because he was upset. It was ridiculous because Abby wouldn't settle down. And it was awesome because he still so wholeheartedly believes in Santa.
Question: "What was your favorite Christmas present?"
"My Rosetta tattoo" ~Abby
*chomp, chomp, snort* (aka Christmas Little Debbies) ~Sarah
Question: "Are these hineys?"
Answer: "No, Abby, those would be hippo heads." (But seriously, that's hilarious.) I had no idea that assembling and playing Hungry, Hungry Hippos would end up being so riotously funny, but I quickly realized such - from the bag of hiney-resembling hippo heads to the enthusiasm with which my toddler raced for those marbles (and didn't even try to eat them!) to the luck of the draw when the person on the downhill side of the floor won every.single.time.
Question: What happens when Sam very fake-ly yells, "Ahhh!!! Black ice!!!" and feigns not being able to stop the van?
Answer: Apparently, my mom believes him, starts pressing the imaginary brake pedal over there in the passenger seat, and is convinced that a female voice actually yelled "Ahhh!!! Black ice!" from the back of the van. Luckily there was no black ice. That Sam is just a trickster. And apparently, he does a very convincing Jennie impression.
Question: What does Grandmom do when the stores at which you're shopping for after-Christmas bargains don't have a public restroom?
Answer: She takes the seven year old outside to relieve himself on the side of the building. She says it was an emergency. Merry Christmas to you, DJ Liquidators. (We're sorry!) Though, I maintain this was probably not the first time nor will it be the last time someone pees on the old Kmart building.
Next up...Signs from the Season that we're doing an okay job raising these kids of ours...
...if I don't see something shiny that distracts me and takes me off in a completely different direction before then.
Hope you've all been enjoying the family togetherness, rejoicing over Jesus's birthday, and staying safe. Until next time...