Once, I took a trip alone. It was glorious. I only had to pack for myself, I was able to nap and read, and I didn’t once have to worry about anyone else’s potty schedule.
Usually, though, I am traveling with a shorty entourage, and I’m a sweaty mix between a pack mule and shepherd. I haul luggage, boarding passes, and pillow pets, and I am constantly redirecting my kids to ensure they aren’t wandering off or touching nasty garbage they find on the ground. My son and daughter are great travelers, but they are still kids.
Here’s what I sound like on those days.
1. Don’t touch that. Or that.
2. Line stanchions aren’t for climbing on. Just because you can limbo under the line divider doesn’t mean you get to cut. This isn’t Chutes and Ladders.
3. No, you don’t need to take off your shoes. Only grown-ups do. Why? Because kids aren’t bad guys. Yes, bad guys wear shoes. No not everyone with shoes is a bad guy. You know what, never mind. Just keep your shoes on, and I’ll explain it later.
4. Hurry up and stay by me.
5. Slow down and stay by me.
6. Don’t stand so close to that lady in front of you. Your head is almost in her bottom.
7. Stop laughing so loudly. Stop saying butt.
8. Let’s go potty. Even if you don’t have to go, just try, because you may not get to go for a while. I’ll bet you can get some pee out. Just try. Oh, you did have some pee? Told you so.
9. Don’t stand so close to that guy. Don’t touch his backpack.
10. Who got to sit by the window last time? Okay, it’s your sister’s turn.
11. You’ll have to hold it, we’re taking off.
12. If I let you have juice without a lid, will you be super careful?
13. It’s okay, don’t cry. We have a change of clothes, and it’s just juice.
14. Who wants to snuggle with Mom? Gimme some of your blanket.
15. You’ll have to hold it. We’re landing.
16. I don’t know why it’s taking so long, but we have to wait until everyone in front of us gets off the plane before we can.
17. Get off the baggage carousel. That kid on Jerry McGuire got to do that because it was a movie. You can’t do that for reals.
18. Do you really have to go again?
20. You’ll have to hold it. We’re on the freeway.
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