Lessons from the road

 
 

Chicago Parent staff

tamaraPosted by Tamara O.

There's nothing like spring break and 1,300 miles in the mini-van to bring a family closer together. Here are three unexpected things from my trip that you might discover as you hit the road for your own spring break togetherness. Feel free to add your own.

  • Parental affirmation. No matter how bad a parent you think you are for screaming at the kids, a visit to a theme park will show you there are plenty of parents who are worse than you. Seriously. And why a mother would think it's going to be a stress-free day when she drags a baby and two toddlers - plus her aging mother - to Busch Gardens is beyond me. Her meltdown near the white tigers hit volcanic proportions.
  • Discussion starters. Haven't had the talk about 'the Birds and the Bees' yet? The great state of Georgia is all too happy to help you out. My 7-year-old kept asking what you'd find in the Adult Superstore advertised on every billboard in between the $tripper$ Need We Say More and Pecans billboards. Try dodging that question whizzing 70 (or so) mph on Interstate 75. And a special thanks to the BP gas station where we stopped for a potty break: Both girls were intensely curious about the vending machine in the women's bathroom selling studded condoms and pleasure gels for 75 cents each.
  • Motivation. Not new but surely forgotten over the long winter: Winter clothes are best at hiding the flaws of an aging mommy body that never gets exercise and exists on junk food. There's nothing like putting on the swimsuit for the first time of the season to bring reality home and New Year's Eve diet plans out of the closet. Well, as soon as vacation is over anyway.
  • Patience. A few deep breaths do wonders when your dear husband grips the passenger side door as you pass between the wavering semi-truck and the overly tired road warrior from Michigan in his oversized RVs. It's better than screaming at him about criticizing your driving (again.)
 
 





 
 
 
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