Monday, January 19, 2009

Adventures in Real Parenting: Road Trip

Just like any other day, the sun rises this morning, painting the sky with streaks of salmon and lavender.

But unlike any other day, this one has a certain significance for me that many of you share. An era of unhappiness and national shame is coming to a close. I am glad to bid it good riddance.

I don't know what the future holds, but I can tell you that I am willing to look forward, hope for better things and give some time to those who want to make it better. I can wait and see what they do before I decide whether or not they are successful.

For those who seem to be taking some pleasure in spreading doom and gloom about the future and scattering I Told You Sos around the blogosphere, I want to say one thing:


Look, I don't want anything to bring me down off my optimistic place. I don't get to visit here very often. According to my mother, pessimism is a genetic gift from my father. So think what you want, write want you want, say what you want. Just not here. I'm going to be out for the day, so if you're inclined to that gray thinking, write it at your own place and I'll be sure not to come and chirp happy stuff at you.

Besides, I've got my own source for glummery and potential growling. The Spawn and I are heading off to Athens to visit the University of Georgia in an attempt to convince The Dancer that it's the right school for her.

Picture, if you will, if you're capable, me driving for a total of five hours with three motion-sickness prone, tired children. One isn't keen on the other two coming along on the trip. One kind of wants to go, but is the most likely to end up barfing on the side of the road and the other doesn't want to go at all and is extremely capable of ruining things for everyone. She has a proven record of doing so.

So, I ask you, what could possibly go wrong? How could I even imagine that at some point I will grumble under my breath that I wish I'd been more diligent about birth control. Take bets, if you like, on how far into the trip someone announces they don't feel well, a fight breaks out and I curse.

Even as I sit here dawdling, I've got one causing a small incident because his iPod isn't working and the electronic guru in our household isn't home.

I can do this without committing a felony. I can do this, I can do this, I can do this......


  1. Oh Lisa, my mum is shaking her head and saying "Rather her than me" That's why mum chose dogs instead of kids. I don't do travel sickness and I don't need an iPod to keep me amused. But hey, you're happy and feeling optimistic - that's a good thing. Mum and me are too. We think it's a great day for the US today. Good luck. xxx

  2. Bon voyage...

    As a suggestion, can't you give them dramamine, which might have the added benefit of knocking them out for the drive?

    Finally, is Tulane off the table now?

  3. I hope she likes the University of Georgia; it's a great school and Athens is a great town.

  4. Just promise there will be ice cream and they will behave. Well, it is an optimistic way to think about your travels.

    Enjoy MLK day. A college campus is the perfect place to do so.

    I am like you, looking forward to better times with fresh new leadership.

  5. I am regularly pessimistic and a glass is broken, half full and may have toxic chemicals in the beverage but I just am filled with optimism as I watch the news. I love this feeling of hope and optimism and for today and tomorrow and for some time after that I will not read anything that will mess with that high.

    Good luck with the big trip. Definitely get the dramamine, it should help keep the drama down.

  6. Today IS full of hope and promise!

    Hope The Dancer gets it and hope The Big O can pull it off.

    To HOPE!!!!!

  7. Just so everyone understands that he is a man and not a god. Believe me, I do want the man to succeed (and I did vote for him), but let's give him some breathing room and not judge him on his first day in office. Let him be a man.

  8. "Are we there yet?" "How much looongeerr??" To which I would usually answer "Three Days!!" Good luck with your road trip!!

  9. Have people been spreading doom and gloom in comments here recently or are you just being preemptive?

    Good luck with the college visit. I once included my younger daughter on a visit to a college in Boston for my other, college-bound daughter. It was a disaster. Those two only get along great when there's miles between them. I'm enjoying the peace. :-)

  10. I wish you patience for your trip.

    And keep that optimism chin up. I feel the same way: everyone needs to stop crapping on a man who hasn't even been sworn in yet. Let him do his thing. We've got plenty of time to call out and bitch and complain if we need to.

    Until that time, remaining hopeful.

  11. I really believe that the naysayers and the pessimists have gone into hiding, where they belong. I am a glass half full kind of guy anyway, so I never listen to them.
    We (Canadians) are proud of your election results of course, and are excited for you as a country.
    If you do well, we prosper with you. When you sneeze, we end up with the cold.
    Do well!

  12. I'm not generally an optimist, but I'm with you today. My sister went to UGa (which I've always wanted to pronounce like an old-timey car horn: ah-ooo-gah!). I enjoyed my couple of visits there, loved the people, loved the town. Wish in retrospect I had been around for some of the music scene- this was early-mid 80's. 'Nuff said.

  13. good luck with the road trip! Now I remember why I like my kids all grown up and gone ;)

  14. I wish you all the patience of a saint for your road trip. We're motion sickness prone people as well so I know how much of a pain that is to deal with, especially with three kids in the car. I have it bad enough with just two!

  15. Patience indeed. In fact, I'll take a stab and say that patience is the theme of this post. Because whether one is optimistic about Obama or not, a 10-hour round trip roadtrip with potentially car sick kids would even drive Ned Flanders batshit.

  16. I'm with you on the optimism thing!

    Good luck on the trip'll need it! ;-)

  17. Have I cannot wait for tomorrow's dawn to break - a new vision....and Bushies will be flying south!

  18. Yesterday the NY Times said that most folks are willing to cut Obama a break for two years based on the enormity of the problems he (and we) are facing. Two years with no bitching? That's optimistic - but still a good sign.

    My kid is going through the college stuff too. Visited Tulane in December.

    Keep it to a misdemeanor and you'll be fine ;)

  19. You break me up!! "..I can do this, I can do this..." and then click your ruby Chuck Taylors together three times, repeat often, 'There's no place like home, there's no place like home..'

    ... and then you wont be in Georgia anymore. ;)

  20. Tulane says they give each kid roughly 50% of the total cost in scholarship funds. Even with that it's still not cheap. The school turned out not to be a good match for Velvet because certain types of engineering merged with Vanderbilt's after the hurricane, so students are in New Orleans at Tulane doing basics for two years then have to move. Other departments are going strong, though, and the facility itself is well maintained. Some dorms are a little shabby, but that's true of many schools. TONS of fun activities sponsored by the school for the students, and kids are from all over the country so she should make friends quickly.
    Hope that helps!

  21.'d ya make out?!

  22. Hope the trip was surprisingly painless.

  23. YES YOU CAN!
    and here is the comment I left at Linda's which seems apt here as well
    "we can and will hope. those who want to stay in the past of partisanship and hate will one day be left in the dust.
    it may not be in the next 4 or 8 years but the road does not seem as long as it did before"

  24. I hope it was a good day for you. Even if it wasn't, tomorrow is the END OF AN ERROR. I sit here hopeful even without a job.

  25. What can I add after reading the ending? Just wish I could have come with you guys.

  26. LOL! You are too funny! :) You make me a little less enthused about parenthood--but not too much, don't worry. *smiles*

    And I'm glad to hear about your acquired ability to handle vomit, because I'm like you used to be--it makes me gag very easily. Hopefully I can get over this when I'm a parent, too. :)


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