The saying goes the bigger the kids easier it is. Well today I lived that. We went to Philadelphia for my niece first bday party. We did this same trip 2 times before(when the girls were 2 months and 10 months) now my kids r aged 27m and 13m. All I can say is that we learned from our mistakes.
I was never a very organized person but this time I decided to do a list and follow it. Also another 2 great decisions were to schedule the driving with kids nap time(not so easy cuz my son has a different schedule than the girls) and to keep calm.
We made the night before a schedule for the day, but this schedule was broken fisrt thing in the morning when we woke up later than expected and it was raining(part of the deal was my hubby to take kids to park so I could pack). So thanks G-d instead of freaking out we just made a new schedule. We would go after lunch.
When my husband went to shul to daven I though I would not be able to keep the stay calm deal cuz the kids got all dirty and stick. So I cleaned the mess they made and had the great idea of giving a shower before lunch. They would be more hungry to eat and more tired to sleep on the car.
So far so good, I put girls for 1st nap, started packing, hubby came and started putting things on the car. In 1hr everything(besides booster seats) was packed exactly time for the girls to wake up.
The rest of the morning went smooth specially cuz I knew everything was in the car. Bath time also was very good cuz they really did got hungry and gave us time for last minute preparation. In 10 minutes all kids, things and us were in the car. Last time I have to assume this would only happen after kids cried a lot and I screamed a lot. But thank G-d this time all went good. In 15 min all kids were sleeping and we were able to have a nice and relax drive(another good commitment was not to comment on my hubby driving skills, I kept 80% of this :).
Because I did the list we didn't forgot anything, I packed faster, so when we are relax kids are more relax and enjoy better the trip.
In the end of the drive the girls woke up crying, I imagine they were hungry so we stopped and gave them some cookies, off course mendel also woke up so he also got cookies and we were able to finish the driving with happy kids and happy parents.
This trip teach me a big lesson, really I learn that many time in my chassidus classes but I could live it today. Everything is ashgocha pratis(divine providence) so there is no reason to stress, if G-d wants you to pass trough this acceptance is the best way. If we try to fight and keep with our old plan the only thing we will get is failure, stress and disappointment. He knows what He's doing and when we accept that and change our plans to meet with His plans our life will run much smothier and happier.
I started saying the kids got bigger and it got easier but really I got bigger and it got easier :)
Today starts a new jewish month so let's start good accepting our life the way He wants and not what we dreamed. b