This summer I’m taking 4 road trips with my family — 2 to the beach and 2 to our hometowns. We just finished our first trip to the beach and I learned that there are a few essential items for surviving a road trip with family.
The Essential Argument
Remember that beautiful day you vowed to “honor and cherish ’til death or road trip do us part“? Oh, you didn’t take the same vows I did?
My husband and I don’t argue often (which is odd since I’m world-renowned for being an irascible
bi$*h fairy), but there’s something about being in a cramped car for 7 hours that drives us to bicker a bit more than usual.
On our first day at the beach, my husband over-poured my cup with wine. (SIDE NOTE: This man’s goal in life seems to be to get me drunk, but alcohol just makes me sleepy.) Anyway, as we’re leaving the beach, he makes some snide remark that makes me snap. I can’t remember what he said, but err’body knows you don’t joke with sleepy winos.
After I snapped, a fatal silence fell in the car all the way back to the hotel. Those 15 minutes felt like eternity. Once back in the room, we stewed in silence for 33 more minutes (yes, I counted). Then he closed the bedroom door, which sealed the deal: we were officially in argument mode.
Now if we were at home, I’d ignore this, but we were hundreds of miles from home and the silent treatment would have ruined the rest of the trip.
So, after realizing that I’d miss a bunch of great beach back rubs if I kept this up, I sighed and went into the room to apologize. Once I saw his crinkled brow soften into a smile, I felt relieved.
Now, what does this have to do with you?
Well, looking back on it, I feel like our trip was kinda split into 2 parts — “Before the Argument” and “After the Argument” and I think it was a good necessary split. Before the argument, we were tense from the long road trip and being in a new place, but after the argument, our mood was more relaxed, more familiar.
Lesson learned for road trips: Be prepared for a bit of tension after the long drive and be more gentle with your family.
The Essential Location
Our resort was awesome with pools, hot tub, playground, golf course, bike trail, and guided activities, but it was a 15-minute drive from the beach. That was a pain! We had to lug a bunch of stuff into the car and no one wants to get back in the car after just making a 7-hour long ride. So, for our next beach trip, the “essential location” will have to be a beachfront hotel.
The Essential Tools
I’ve got a bad case of Busy Mommy Memory, so it’s best for me to have a checklist when packing. There are tons of checklists out there, but most of them only mention basics. So I created one with all of those little helpful things that I wish I remembered on trips through the years. I even added a new trick (new to me at least) about using talcum powder to brush sand from your skin. If you click on the image below, you’ll be able to download the free printable packing checklist to use for your next trip.
What are some of your “essentials” when taking a road trip or going to the beach?