When we drove out to Eugene, Oregon, we went through Bend and, as previously stated, the drive was hellacious. We decided to drive home through northern Oregon. I'm quite happy to report that it took just as long but (and that's a really big BUT--I'm telling you) we took longer stops yesterday to try and keep the natives from getting restless. And by the natives I mean mama. Mama can only take so much incessant chatter. Mama can only handle the contents of the toy box being dumped on the floor fifteen times. On the sixteenth time, she starts to lose it. Mama doesn't like it when the baby is fed and changed and decides to scream for no apparent reason at all. Mama knows that something has snapped when she starts referring to herself in the third person. Mama has clocked an enormous amount of hours on road trips in her twentysomething years but has never found herself wanting to claw at the windows quite as much as she did on this particular trek. Although, to be fair, the return trip was much better than the journey west.
We left Eugene on Thursday afternoon and drove up to Portland. The Rock Star got to see his cousins, Tooper* and Hoyer*, for a couple of hours and then we met one of my friends for dinner. Ashby and I were in theatre together in college and her parents, who I had only met once before, generously opened their guest room to my family. After Troy got the boys to sleep, we started watching SNL:The Best of Amy Poehler and ohmygoodness almost died laughing at Amy being Christopher Walken. Seriously. The funny part is Amy. Before her and after her are only moderately humorous. We had to watch her lines like 85,000 times and I haven't laughed that hard in a really long time. It was the kind of laugh that sort of almost hurts. My ribs felt like they were going to start breaking off one by one and my face was sore with hysterical smiling. It's good to laugh like that once in a while. If you watch it and can't, for the life of you, figure out what is so funny about it, wait until after midnight and add Ashby and a bottle of peach Schnapps. We didn't have any Schnapps. We didn't need it. We are theatre people, remember. I'm just saying, if you don't find it funny...maybe Schnapps would help. If you still can't find the humor, well, I just...I guess I can't help you. You might be drunk though so I will come hold your hair while I mumble something about how, "this is what happens when you drink."
We left yesterday morning, after I pried my second born out of Ashby's vice grip. We drove from Portland to Boise and then stayed at the same place we stayed on the way to Oregon. Our friends were out of town but they gave us a key and let us crash at their house. We are grateful for this as it had a direct correlation to mama not losing her marbles. The drive through the Columbia River Gorge was much better than the drive through Old McDonald's Farm Land followed by Buck Cunningham's Onion Patch followed by Crazy Uncle Joe's Cattle Farm followed by Burns, Oregon followed by Mr. Crabtree's Carrot Field followed by Praise the Lord We Made It To Bend followed by a screaming banshee possessing the vocal chords of our baby for two whole hours. So even though the trip back was better, we were thankful to not have to drive 14 hours in one day with two children who have, as the sum total of their ages, 40 months of life experience.
This morning we got up and headed out just before seven. We made it home just after noon and did absolutely nothing for our 4th of July except prance around in the glorious knowledge that our butts were no longer affixed to the seat of a car. Truthfully, the boys did really well. Considering the fact that they were in car seats for over 32 hours for this trip, mama is proud.
Five minutes from the house The Rock Star exclaimed, "I want to drive back to my cousins!" Mama simply turned her head in his direction and shot him "the look".
P.S. I'm mama.
*names have been changed because, well, that's how Garrett says them.