Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Driving with two kids. Alone. For 7 hours.

Today we came back from our family vacation!  We had tentative plans to visit my friend, who lives outside of Buffalo/Niagara when M was given the opportunity to present at a conference in...Buffalo!  We decided to combine the two, so he flew to Buffalo and went to his conference on Friday while the boys and I drove up on Friday as well.

This may be the longest drive I've ever done without another driver, and it's definitely the longest one in a very very long time.  Moreover, it is absolutely the longest I've driven without another driver with two kids.

I tried to be organized (ha!) and plan ahead.  I made a little coloring pencil  box for A out of a DVD case; it worked like a charm and I really wish I'd made a crayon box like it for E.  Next time.

I made a little box of snack baggies (you can see it next to A), got a little cubby to go in between them, which is filled with library books, coloring tin for A, magna doodle for E, and blankies!

Sayonara, house!
The drive was pretty uneventful.  The boys were well behaved, though we had to make a potty stop about 45 minutes into it and the rain poured and poured and poured from pretty much the time we left NJ.  After that, we were able to continue on until we got to NY State around lunchtime.

The boys watched a DVD; E fell asleep during it but A stayed up the whole time and fell asleep soon after.  Unfortunately, I had to wake them for my own potty stop.

We finally made it to where M was at Buffalo State around 5 (we'd left a little after 9am) and decided to go out for dinner before heading to Youngstown.  People told us to go to all different places for wings, but we decided to go to Gabriel's Gate, which also happened to be right near the university.

A asked to take a picture with this guy, much to the amusement at a man at the nearby bar.

We'd heard that THESE are the best because they are the biggest.  We thought they were really good.  We got them mild, but they had just the right amount of tang for both of us and we both liked that they were "naked" and not breaded.

Next we headed north to go to Youngstown and check into our rooms.  We were staying at a sort of Bed and Breakfast... we stayed in basically a small apartment in a house.  We had a living room with a pull out bed, a kitchenette, a bedroom, and a bathroom.  It was the perfect size for us, the separate rooms were amazing, and we were able to make some meals (or, more accurately, store leftovers in the fridge for later).

Because M's flight had been so delayed due to storms, he decided to stay and rest in the room while the boys and I went to the playground and to meet J and S.  I hadn't seen J since 1996 or '97 (!!!) so I was super excited!

They took us for a walk to see the yacht club.  The boys were fascinated by all the boats while I was enthralled by the view and gorgeous sunset.

The Yacht Club had a little boat that had been turned into a sandbox and the boys had a blast there.  In the end, they stayed up until 9pm, but needed to burn some energy before going to bed after so much sitting.

The boys loved looking at the boats, but E was particularly interested.  Every time the little boat took people out to their boats, he would stop what he was doing and turn to watch.  A budding skipper??