The Pre-Trip

Once Lee and I finally decided (slash Lee made the executive decision) that we were going to go on our family trip my mind was in full speed how are we going to get through this safely and with some fun - relaxation was thrown out the window which we were okay with - it was not about us. We are not able to take time off during the summer because the pool business is in overdrive.

First things first. In order to get to the Dominican Republic it requires a passport - which requires pictures and paperwork. We went to Sam's and got the pics taken. Both girls have insanely crazy hair! Then I found the paperwork for the passports online. Now when applying for minors both parents must be there. So Lee and I finally found a day when we both could go and he was not working out of town. Enter the library. Two little hungry kids in a library... not the best combo. As it turns out I forgot their SSNs. Grrrrrrrrrrrr. Lee gets a paper that he gets notarized so he does not have to come back but gives his permission for passports for the girls. Excellent. I fill out the paperwork early one morning - since water was on the first set - I get the SSNs and voom voom off to the library, again... with two hungry kids - yes I went at lunch time because I have to work and the hours of operation of the passport people is minimal. Roll up to the counter. give E some pens and paper. R is on the floor - germs! "I'm sorry ma'am the forms must be filled out in black ink not blue" Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr... Now if you have filled out one of those forms you will know how long it is and having to do two sets is no easy task. Enter screaming of both girls and hello shredded mama nerves.

So we eventually got through the passport issue and got them in the mail. Now, how to get the girls through the airport in a controlled - non-holligan like manner. I had seen these airport rolly things before and they look kind of ridiculously awesome. So I did some research on Amazon with the different brands. We have Britax carseats and that roller did not have the best reviews. The one I wanted was backordered so I settled on the GoGo Baby one. We tried it out at home and they worked. R's carseat is more like a recliner so it was a bit for cumbersome to get on. Let me tell you those things we lifesavers. No worries about if E was wandering anywhere. She was strapped in and going with us. E and R did have to get out through security which was fine. Also, getting through the aisle of the plane Lee and I did have to pick them up in the seats to get through the aisle but it was not bad. Another plus is that E and R did not have to sit in the germ-a-fied airplane seats. Yes I am a germ-a-phob but only with my kids.

Finally I knew I needed a master pack list. I did get motivated to make this and start assembling the bags before the day before we left. Everyone needed clothes for the trip, a bag for the airport, and a bag for Grammy's house since we were staying there the night before and going to the airport from their house. I am a bagger - I think better when things are compartmentalized. Oh and St. Nicholas had to come while we were at the beach too so that was more stuff!

Enter is everything that we did not plan for.

Saturday I was packed and ready. House was clean. Laundry was done. 1:05 Sunday morning. I wake up to - as usual - to check on the girls etc...I cover E up and R is set. Not more than 90 seconds later I hear cough cough over the monitor. Awesome E is sick ... like throwing up sick. She is distraught. Lee gets up cleans the sheets and I get E in the shower. E is upset that Nini is in the wash. She gets sick three more times... We made it to the bathroom the last two but trying to convince a toddler to get sick in the potty is not worth it - spread out towels and hope the clothes are spared. About 4 am I am on the floor in her room and Lee is back in bed. I am thinking it was the sub she ate for dinner because Lee and I had something different than her. So we are still okay.

7:00 AM Sunday - t minus 24 hrs til blastoff - Lee goes to church I stay home with the girls. There is nothing in the house because well we were not supposed to be here. Fortunately I have an awesome mother in law who bring formula for R and OJ for E. I start to feel horrible. I turn on PBS and hope for the best by 10 I know I am getting sick too. E is better though and no fever but I start to get worried R might get it. As soon as Lee walks in the door from church I get in bed and hunker down. I just lay in bed wondering if we are going to even go on this trip. As my knees and back ache I am thinking not - but what a waste all the planning and packing would be.

Later that night Lee and I finish the final pack - in the off chance we do decide to go in the morning. I sit around and make sure everything that needs to go goes. and retreat downstairs because I cannot take it anymore. Lee goes out and get me a Gatorade - which I cannot even stomach. The trip is looking more and more doubtful as Lee heads to the couch for the night.

3:30 AM wake up call - living close to an airport is such a luxury sometimes. Lee feels fine. I don't feel horrible. R never got sick and E is on the mend so load em up and head out. The only think I can trace the sickness to is some cheese E and I had for lunch on Saturday because it was not the flu - neither of us had a fever and the sickness was over in 12 hours.

So the trip is not starting out on the best of feet but at least its a go.

More trip details forthcoming : )


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