The Trouble With Trips…

… is NOT the actual trip itself, thank you very much. I love traveling, really I do! But as I’m sitting here stewing over tomorrow’s family trip to Big D, a ginormous light bulb just popped on above my head. If you’re troubled by a glare right now, I guarantee it’s from the big Aha bulb hanging over my noggin as we speak.

The Big Aha?

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Planning and packing for a trip is what I absolutely HATE!

Ok, maybe hate is too strong of a word. Can’t stand, causes me incredible amounts of stress, keeps me up at night? Those are closer to the mark. See, I’ve said before – and will yet again – that I am tremendously Type A over certain things. Traveling and time are two of those – and since trips involve both of them, I’m in a tizzy today.

Packing? Yeah, there’s that. But first I’ve got to figure out what Big D weather is supposed to be. That’s a problem right there, since March could mean anything from 30 degrees to 80 in the shade. Really. And whatever the forecast says – I’ve got to plan for ten degrees’ window on either side of it, because that’s probably the temps we’ll actually get this weekend. And, once I figure that out, I’ve got to narrow down exactly what I want to wear up there. Yes, we’re visiting family. Yes, I’m seeing friends. No, no one really cares what I look like.

But I do. This is a rare chance for me to get out of my normal workday conservative wear and actually wear my real clothes. Not my normal weekend cleaning-the-house wardrobe of jeans and the ratty college sweatshirt I’ve had for decades now. And I’m enough of a girl to get excited about actually dressing up in casual wear for once. But I have to get all Type A about it, down to accessories, shoes and bags. Ladies, you totally know what I’m getting at here. Since I’m mildly indecisive on a good day, you can see why deciding what to pack could be an issue here.

Add to that the fact that, since I’m working tomorrow, said packing has to be done tonight or tomorrow before 8 AM at the latest. And it never fails – clothes that I’ll want to pack are probably in the laundry now. So there’s that to do.

Speaking of laundry, I need to work on paring the dirty clothes mountain down to a small hill. Not necessarily a requirement, true, but I HATE coming home to piles of dirty clothes. Just hate it. So there’s laundry to do tonight.

Minions. Their clothes are already clean, thanks to the Spouse. And they’re both old enough (at least theoretically) to pack all of their own stuff if I give them a list. But they’re crafty. See, they do a fabulous job of packing books, toys, video games – all of the essential stuff. But something like a toothbrush? “Oh, we must’ve forgotten about that.” Ha. I know their game. By ‘forgetting’ to pack a toothbrush they think they’ll get away with not brushing their teeth for the duration. As if.

The cats. We’re very lucky that our oh-so-sweet neighbor child feeds them when we’re out of town. But, given the fact that her parents usually come over with her, I always feel obligated to clean up the house before we leave. No sense in having the neighbors know what the kitchen counters really look like on a daily basis, is there?

So, packing. Minions. Cleaning. Cats. Work. Add in the fact that the Spouse will actually be loading the car before picking me up at the office on our way out of town. So there’s the worry that he’ll forget a bag or two that I packed.

Sigh. See what I mean? Once we’re actually on the road I’m good. Getting there really is half the fun, now that we’re past the stage of having to change a rancid diaper by the side of the road in the middle of nowhere.

It’s just the prep work that stinks.

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