Ok, now don't get hooked. Just because I post twice in a week doesn't mean that it's going to be happening on a regular basis. Actually, we are on vacation and as I have now taken "off" from my regular duties I am free to kick back, relax, and merely wash dishes, clean, do laundry, and ....well, actually it's better than that.
So far vacation has been an interesting mix of pros and cons. The first con being packing, or thinking of packing. Every time I get to the part of actually putting the family in a bag and sending us somewhere I think that I am really quite happy where I am and that perhaps we don't need a vacation after all! But the pro is that I had lots of friends to help out. People came in and helped pack (I had a VERY BAD cold and was feeling like I'd been hit by a truck and my face needed a plunger.) and get food ready, and kept the children away, and made dinner, and all sorts of things. I think one of my favorites was one of the Bible School girls ran in on Thursday and with a big grin said, "I have...(look at clock) 6 minutes. What can I do?" She did half the dishes on the counter and 5 times blessing my heart in those 6 minutes. I felt very loved. So we were sent off...hmmm....maybe they were just happy to see us leave...(just kidding).
We left Fairwood at 2 am planning for another record breaker to GA. SO far our family's record stands at 18 hours 45min. We did not break it this time. We tried, but got a little distracted by the mess that came around 5 pm.
(INSERT WARNING ABOUT GROSS THINGS MOTHERS HAVE TO DEAL WITH)
Ok, so at 5, Jonathon decides he has to throw up. The short story here is that in the space of 45 min. He had thrown up 4 times and soiled the car seat and his pants twice. The boy really felt miserable. I had one bucket in the car for him and he couldn't use it for both ends at the same time. I told him he had to pick one or the other and he did, but his body did not cooperate with his brain. SO we stopped to clean up at a McDonald's with a playground.
Jonathon sat outside and I cleaned the seats and found clean clothes for him while Brandon took the rest of the children to play. I got Jonathon cleaned up and the van as clean as I could, begged a few bags from Mickie D's and thought we were good to go. By the way, if you ever want a tip on great methods of effective vomiting receptacles for a road trip I have a plethora of ideas, the best being a small garbage bag in a large cup. Catch, tie, throw into a large bag, reline cup, repeat. Anyway, just before reloading the van, Jonathon threw up again and so we cleaned up again. After loading the small children- anyone under 4, and Jonathon, James was waiting his turn feeling rather left out, so he just exploded onto the parking lot with a ream of liquid. I have never seen a child more calm during such an event, but he just bent over, hurled several times, stood up, wiped his mouth with the back of his sleeve just like all boys were taught, and said, "Please can we keep going to Georgia. I don't want to go back home yet." I said ok, as we were actually in South Carolina at the time. I might have reconsidered in Virginia.
So James got in, said, "I think I won't throw up again until we get to Georgia." and he didn't. He made it just across the state line. But I'm getting ahead of myself. We're still in the parking lot at McDonald's. Ok, so in the car went James and Brandon and I climbed in and off we go. At the light to return onto the interstate Jonathon says, "I think I have to do another stinky." Around the block we go, back to the parking lot where Brandon and Jonathon rush into the bathroom and I sit in the car and think to myself: WE ARE GOING TO BE HERE FOREVER!
We weren't. Actually, we left after that and I told Brandon that if he would just keep driving and not stop, I would be the hurl patrol. I lost count of how many rounds we went, but it was quite a few between the two of them. Our total trip time was a sad 20 hours and 15 min. But considering the circumstances, I think a pretty good effort.
Let's see the next thing we did was unload the van into my parents' house. After that things started to settle down a bit. We all headed to bed and things were ok- sort of. Rachel threw up in the night- all over herself, but Grandpa cleaned up and left Brandon and I to sleep...ahhh...and then somewhere between Saturday afternoon and Sunday night, Brandon, Mary, James- again, Grandpa, Aunt Amy, Aunt Diane, Jeff, and Joseph (just bad diapers) got sick. My poor mother became the bucket brigade while Aunt Ruth kept the well children entertained.
As of today, everyone seems on the mend- except my Mom. She has been running a fever, but nothing else. I say she gets off great if that's all. Ruth hasn't been sick either. As far as the family competitions go, Diane wins the prize for most rounds, topping out at 16. Daddy gets the prize for loudest noises. Brandon gets the honor of most likely to be lifted off his chair while throwing up. Rachel and I get the one time only prize, though I felt like all sorts of bad words while I wasn't vomiting. Jeff, Joseph, and Grandmother seem to have squeaked by with just mild symptoms and avoided the unpleasantries of buckets altogether.
Now that we have been on vacation for um....5 days, we can start having some fun!
Some of it has been fun. Like my mom is Laundry Queen and I haven't had more that a small pile of dirty clothes for the entire family the whole time we've been here and that's pretty impressive considering the sickness stuff. I've enjoyed my Dad cooking and cooking with him a little. Ruth organized the playhouse for Rachel and it's fun to see my daughter play in the house that I wanted but was built after I was "too big" to play "house"-or so I thought. Apparently, I'm still not too big cause I play house every day. But she gets to feed us sand and that's way cooler! Ok, and the children went to the playground with Brandon today and left me home to reorganize our junk. Jeff and Rachel have fun in the Little Tykes cars here and Rachel calls them "Jeff's bowling green and Rachel's bowling green". (In order for that to be funny, you have to know that the place at home where we occasionally have little kids cars is called the bowling green.)
And umm....we are relaxed, albeit in a different way than I had expected, but in some ways nice. Had we come down here completely well, I would feel obligated to be out running around seeing people that I haven't seen in at least a year and since we've been sick, we've been forced to sit back, play video games, watch movies, and play together for a while. It's been good. Though if that's what God wanted us to get, maybe he could have just sent us a little letter in the mail with an itinerary or something. I don't think the stomach bug was really all that necessary.
uh....I better go to bed. But I should have free time in the near future to continue our saga and perhaps it will continue in a positive direction, or like most of life, perhaps I could just CHOOSE to see it that way. Goodnight for now.