After our late, late night closing the Magic Kingdom. We ALL slept in. It was nice. We needed it.
We got checked out, loaded up and were on our way about 11:30 am. It is only a 6 hour drive to Trent's Aunt Emilie's home in South Carolina. We stopped at a Subway for lunch and the kids had so much fun watching Trent play a silly coin game where you have to position a key to win the prize. The kids were just certain that their Dad could win an ipad for them. After playing 6 times and not winning we cut our losses and got back on the road.
For dinner we ate at IHOP. And then we got to Emilie's around 8:00 p.m. The kids nearly talked her ears off. You could tell that they had been trapped in a car with literally thousands of stories of our week just desperate to burst free!!!!
Once we sent them to bed, they were all asleep in a matter of minutes. (I think we really did wear them out this whole week!)
Here is little Owen on the drive.
So, now a few comments on taking long drives with 5 kids.
It sure isn't the easiest thing, but it also isn't so bad. You are free to stop. You make your own schedule. You can start early or finish late. The flexibility is nice.
and DVD's help, as do Ipod touches (if you can keep them charged).
I grabbed mostly new movies to take this time (all from the $5 bin at Walmart). The good thing about new movies is that once you can convince your kids to give it a shot they are usually hooked because they do not already know the ending. The bad thing about new movies is that even if they are tired they tend to stay awake because they don't want to miss anything. It is also fun to see which of the movies are a hit with the kids and which ones are a flop. For example, one of the movies was called Aliens in the attic. Julianne DID NOT want to watch it. But 20 minutes into it she (and all the other kids) were in heaven. They actually watched this movie 3 times in the car. They did not like Sister Act??? They wouldn't even give it a chance. They loved because of winn-dixie. The didn't like Inkheart so much.
Also the kids could watch Netflix on our iphones so that was nice. And Trent and I listened to several podcasts. The interesting thing is that no matter how long or short the drive the last 20 minutes are always absolute hell. I think the combo of car fatigue, suspended anticipation, and more factors contribute, but there is no way to really prepare for that part of the car ride.