A Marathon

driving5Yesterday I dipped my toes in the pool of insanity. Yesterday I set some sort of record for caffeine consumption. Yesterday I watched Magoo plunge his hands into two public toilets, create a tsunami at Denny’s in Butte, Montana and smear his body with CANDY!! OH, OH, OH CANDY!!!!!!!

Yesterday I took a 14.5 hour road trip with both kids to visit my mom and dad in Eastern Montana. Luckily they don’t live in Butte because honestly…I’m not sure I could visit them there. The name is not the only thing wrong with the town. Butte has a Sinclair gas station with a convenience store which sells only liquor. Not a candy bar, map or book about bear attacks to be found (freakish for a Montana establishment of any kind). It is a gas station/ liquor store, but hey, don’t drink and drive, fer sure. On the streets of Butte, you can only turn one direction, don’t think about changing lanes and you cannot exit the Conoco station, ever. Luckily they sell pork rinds and other healthful snacks so you can live out your life quite peacefully.


The kids were actually amazing, very little fighting, yelling or major destruction. Laylee didn’t even do her impression of the tone-deaf Little Mermaid’s lost American Idol audition tape (a family favorite in enclosed spaces). When she does this, Magoo salutes her by yelling “SHUT!” repeatedly at the top of his lungs.

driving3At our one major rest stop, Magoo even developed a new game wherein I would place him in the center of the lawn and he would immediately run to the parking lot and throw his beach ball in front of oncoming traffic, while laughing hysterically and having a blowout in his pants. There’s no fun in having a blowout at a location with an available changing table so I’m proud of his choice of venues.

When I told Laylee to get out and run around, she sauntered over to a quaint little patch of concrete, set up her Polly Pockets all in a row and commenced talking to herself in a small and high pitched voice.


driving4Car, car, car, dead grass, dead grass, road kill, people who feel entitled to drive with their brights on at all times to avoid hitting deer, more road kill, temporary blindness, retaliatory brights, off-key singing, 30 dvds, EMERGENCY potty stops, more dead grass, GRAMMY AND PAPA’S HOUSE!!!

We’re here and safe. I miss Dan madly so I think I’ll make myself a blankie out of some Strawberry Shortcake flannel my mom has in stock, eat mini-eggs and read the 100 books I packed in the suit-case that would have been Dan’s if he didn’t feel the need to stay home and earn ye olde family dollar.

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28 Responses to A Marathon

  1. Jeana says:

    Glad you’re there, safe and sound and making me laugh my Butte off.

  2. Farm Wife says:

    OH, honey! I vow to never again complain about the five hour trip I have to make to get to my parents’ house…but then, maybe we could break it down to miles per child…let’s see that would be…oh, never mind, you still have me beat! Enjoy your visit.

  3. Jessica says:

    Wow! I have taken some long car trips, but never by myself with the childrens. You are a brave woman (maybe I shouldn’t say that; I get that exact same comment often when I go to the store with my four very young and close-in-age kiddos, and I know that by “brave” they usually mean “insane” or “stupid”. Just so you know, I really mean brave) How did you stay awake? I can’t seem to keep my eyes open once I have been made to sit for more that 20 minutes. Our last several car trips have consisted of my husband driving 90% of the time, with the other 10% me driving and doing wacky things to keep myself awake before finally admitting after about 100 miles that I can’t handle it.
    Glad you made it safe and have a fun visit!

  4. Sarah says:

    sounds like a great time. almost identical to the ones I take with my kids by myself.

  5. Liz says:

    have a great time!

  6. Mir says:

    Wait, were you kidding about the caffeine? I thought Mormons weren’t allowed to have caffeine! Or do you get a special dispensation when it involves long car trips?

  7. Julie Q. says:

    Man, you must really love your mommy. I’m not sure I would drive that far with kids and no husband. You are the woman!

    Our favorite travel game? We spot road kill. Whoever sees one first yells “carcass!” and we keep track of points. Simple, yet oh so very entertaining in that sick, furry, splattered intestines on the pavement kind of way. You’re welcome to use it on your ride home.

  8. Heidi says:

    You drove (pretty much) straight through in one day? With two small chidren? What are you, cwazy? Okay, now that we’ve established that, too bad there wasn’t time to recreate in Missoula on your way through. Our carousel is really wonderful!

  9. Lei says:

    Phew, huh? That’s what I would be saying. You got there. Don’t look back! Lol!

    Have oh-so-much-fun. 🙂

  10. Shalee says:

    Hey, that sounds like the time I took a 17 hour drive to Galveston, TX see my folk. Straight through and hand the kids over the moment I arrived. It was an act of desperation. I had mono, a husband who was out of town for a month straight and no help* in sight. The moment I arrived, I handed the kids over, let my mom tuck me in and slept well to catch up on strength AND sanity.

    *By no help, I meant that I didn’t ask for any because I was sick and stupid, and really I just wanted to run home to Mom because I knew I could hand the kids over and have a chance to sleep.

  11. Tricia Smith says:

    If I know Grammy Rules (and I do from a long long time ago) she is going to take good care of you and make that long drive worth it. Tell her and that Matt and Trish say Hi. And you enjoy your awesome family.

  12. Kimberly says:

    You are one daring mom. That’s all I have to say about that.

  13. Carrie says:

    Sounds like it’s been quite an adventure already. Have a great time with your family!

  14. Jen says:

    Don’t you love it when the kids behave?! Over Christmas we drove from Fort Lewis to San Francisco, then to Phoenix for New Years, back to SF and then back to Washington. All in one day trips each. I couldn’t BELIEVE how good my boys were! It is times like that where I really learn to appreciate them! That being said, we are headed up to Whistler tomorrow morning, only 5 hours or so, and I have a feeling as I am writing this that they are going to be little MONSTERS!!! I am knocking on wood at this moment! KNOCK KNOCK!!!! Please be good little dudes!!!

  15. Oh. My. OOOOHHH! MYYYY! I bow to your daringness, your youngness and your momness. I worship at the shrine of the goddess of monster-toting road trips. Dan better have a big box of chocolates and candle-lit, catered dinner for you when you get back. And a babysitter. And a foot massage. (Hi Dan, how’s the job? Derek says hi, and we won’t be moving to Washington any time soon. 🙁 We’re going to Oh-Hi-Oh.)

  16. Big Mama says:

    Your name doesn’t lie. A 14 hour road trip definitely makes you a daring young mom. You crack me up.

  17. Erin Marie says:

    That’s a crazy trip. I thought that the 7 hours to MY mommy’s house were long. Here’s to thinking and praying that the return trip will be just as much fun.

  18. Melissa says:

    We stayed in Butte one time… only one time. And funny thing, I think I know the Sinclair/liquor store you’re talking about! 😀 Our kids have never known a life close to relatives. Right now we are about 16 hours away. So, I feel your pain! I hope you have a fabulous time while you are at your parents.

  19. Kookaburra says:

    Sounds like fun… now I know what I have to look forward to. Easter weekend we are taking a 14 hour drive to visit my brother in law. Yea I’m sure it’ll be a blast with hubby, my 1 year old daughter, and my 16 year old other brother in law… all crammed in a Focus!

  20. heather says:

    You are so BRAVE. 6 hours is the most I have ever gone alone with my children. 14.5 hours, with 2.young.kids. You are a rockin’ mommy.

    Here is hoping your sanity makes it home with you 🙂

  21. J. Fergie says:

    oooo! 14+ hours? you’re a Jedi. we did 11 to Montreal over Labor Day weekend and I.Will.Never.Do.That.Again. But hey, have a great trip home 🙂 No, seriously, be safe and enjoy Grammy and Papa – they’re worth some roadkill anytime!

  22. bon says:

    Wooo. You ARE a Jedi Master! I did the 12 hours from my folks house to our home in Utah once by myself… a thing I will NEVER do again!

    The fact that you are still alive to blog it? LAAAAAA! (angelic choirs)

  23. Sorry Montana wasn’t good to you! Every time I travel like that I vow to never ever do it again. And I always have the Warlock with me.

  24. MrsLady says:

    Wooooooooooowwwwwwww. [Awed Silence] That is quite possibly The. Most. Amazing. Thing. Ever. I only have one 3 year old, and I hate driving to the store with him four blocks away! Although it sure beats walking. I’m sure your mom will watch them for a bit so you can go bang your head against a wall. As always though, your post is hilarious.

    Good luck and stay safe on the trip back.

  25. Paige says:

    YOu are a brave, brave woman. I applaud your efforts at family time with grammy and papa. Enjoy your books while the kids jump all over the grandparents.

  26. Amy says:

    When I lived in Missoula, we called Butte “The Butt”. Cuz that’s what it is.

    We would drive from Missoula to Phoenix (about 20 hours) in one day, but no kids. We were young and kid-free. No longer (and I love it!!)

  27. EmLouisa says:

    This post has me thinking quite seriously about blogging again. And I’ve only been away for a week. Man I’m such a loser! haha.

    You are such a fab writer, Kathryn! I know every time I come here I will laugh, cry or something. You have a wonderful ability to stir emotion in people. Well done, girlfriend. May I call you girlfriend? 🙂

  28. KYouell says:

    I hope you waved at Big Timber as you went by (assuming that to get to Eastern MT from Butte you used I-90). That’s where my people are from. Well, actually, a lot of them are back there at the Mountain View Cemetery, which is beautiful. The kids might like the Crazy Mountain Museum better tho. They have a real Scandinavian Stabbur and I think maybe a teepee to go in sometimes, too. (http://www.sweetgrasscounty.com/museum/)

    If you ever want to make it a 2-day trip (with Dan, wink, wink), hang a right on 191 at Livingston and drive about 30 mins into Paradise Valley. You’ll see a sign for Chico Hot Springs Resort. Just follow the signs (or go to their website at http://www.chicohotsprings.com/) to get there. We got married there and I can’t wait to go back with the kiddos. Oh, and the Yellowstone Rocks massage at the day spa was WONDERFUL!

    They really do have a pool fed by hot springs that you can pay to use for the day, or use for free if you get a room. (They are pretty inexpensive if you get a room in the main lodge.) The kids could blow off some steam with DYD while you go get a massage, eh? Nice time for all!

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