My sister-in-law Amy and I decided to throw all the kids into Vinnie (our trusty ol' mini-van that we've acquired. Will calls it the "vini-van"; hence, its name) and trek on down to Hershey, PA, to visit my other sis-in-law, Kasey, and her two kids. It was a fun and fast trip. We learned a few things, to say the least, traveling with all the kiddos. We learned:
1. Never, never put the two three-year-old boys all the way back in the vini-van because it will be impossible to reach their ever-so-needy-three-year-old selves. Seriously, mini-vans need a pulley system or something. And Amy, the copilot, got the workout of a lifetime, reaching back there to divvy out snacks, find trains, fix the DVD player and so on and so forth.
2. Never underestimate baby James. The thirteen-month-old was by far the best one in the car. He didn't cry, didn't really sleep, but did just sit there, happy as a clam for the five-hour drive.
3. Never make a stop at 5 Guys in Scranton, PA (yes, the Scranton of the Office fame). While the kids had been happy in the van, we decided to stop for lunch where they were decidedly unhappy--no one ate one bite of their food and tears and tantrums ensued.
4. Never sleep with Will on vacation (or anywhere else for that matter). Will slept with Amy, Sam and Baby James (I slept on the couch b/c I didn't want to wake everyone all the time with my innumerable bathroom trips) and he would wake up at odd hours of the night (or morning), jump around on the loud air mattress and then sometimes go back to sleep (or sometimes just stay awake). What a menace.
5. Never doubt your child when he/she insists it's wet, rainy and cold in the back of the car. Turns out the window was rolled down unbeknown to me, all amid a stormy, rainy day and Will's complaints were valid. Poor kid.
6. Do have fun with your cousins. These kids adore each other. There's nothing like cousins.
7. Do have a good time playing at Hershey park, visiting the infamous chocolate factory and throwing rocks at the duck pond.
8. Do stay up late, laughing and chatting and getting plenty of girls' time.
9. Do say lots and lots of prayers that trusy ol' Vinnie will make it home safely.
10. Do send Kasey a thank-you card for letting us come and crash her place and eat all her food. Or if you're far too lazy for that, do at least write a blog-post where you publicly thank her for her hospitality. Thanks, Kase! We had a ball. Until next time, right?
Now for the pictures. As usual, I didn't take enough photos and these are all at the duck pond on our way out of town.