We take a lotta “adbentures” around here. Since Hank was able to talk, any car ride that lasted more than about an hour was deemed an adbenture. We also spend a good bit of time at the beach, so that ALWAYS gets classified adbenture.
Now, adding a hotel to the mix of our travel plans is TOTAL adbenture material. And we took a great last one before we’re officially a party of 6, down to Mobile.
While it was technically a conference trip for Pat, the rest of this pack decided to make the most of it, and take in what sights we could.
We left for the 2 & 1/2 hour drive right after Cousins Easter and dropping the chicks off at my parents house. Pat found a really good 90s playlist on Spotify, and after a quick stop for supper at a super fancy Wendy’s, we were good to go.
Sidenote: Any time we’re in the car after dark, I pack pajamas for the kids to change into. They think it’s a huge treat, and I think it makes getting them from their carseats to their beds a huge treat. #winning
So, with everyone in their “juhmas” for the last leg of the trip, and bellies full of half eaten Wendy’s baked potatoes and nutragrain bars, we pulled in to the Riverview Renaissance valet spot to unload a crap ton of bags for a 2 night stay.
The guy taking our luggage commented on how many bags did it take when you have kids, and then tried to follow it up with a funny by asking about how quick they grow out of shoes. I was not amused. If anyone knows how much of a challenge it is to travel with children, it’s me.
And it’s always cute to hear about people talking about their vacations. When you have children, one does not simply vacation. You go on trips. That is all.
On this trip, I forgot a stroller. And wearing compression hoses hasn’t caught on with current fashion just yet, so traipsing all over the hotel & downtown Mobile made this TRIP even more of an experience. At least the view was amazing, right?
Hank gets pretty excited about the opportunity to live it up at a continental breakfast, I mean, who wouldn’t? Hilton waffles and powdered eggs are to die for. Especially when they’re free. But this swanky little spot only offered a breakfast of the $18 a plate variety.
Monday morning had us booking it down 26 floors & jumping in the car for a 3 block ride to a sad, mini Chic-Fil-A. It was like the one that used to be in the Trojan Center in college. Only chicken biscuits in the morning, chicken sandwiches & 8 piece nuggets the rest of the day. And those nasty waffle fries. *Keep your comments to yourself. They’re gross.*
But either way, we had our breakfast, and then Pat was on his way to the conference center for the longest day EVER. It must have been so hard for him to go to a lunch with potential clients and then dinner with some salesmen while his pregnant wife and three children were in the hotel room. But I’m not bitter. This window was the spot to be. I made several snap stories from what all we get to see go by. So there’s that.
I knew what I was in for when I signed up to go.
But still, I’m not bitter.
I gathered the herd and all the paraphernalia they require to go somewhere, and we went to the parking garage to adbenture some more. It’s a race to push elevator buttons every.single.time. and once we got down to the right level, we had to walk over to get on a different elevator to get to the car. Hank rushed to push the button while Marnana rushed to jump in the elevator with a homeless man. I was all “GUYS! Don’t you remember we were taking the stairs? Come on back this way so we can walk down these 6 flights to get out of this place!!!” MH just kept staring at the guy huddled in the corner of the elevator…
Seemed like the perfect way to start our day.
I did manage to get all three to take a quick picture while we waited for a car to move so I could get into my vehicle. This belly does not sidle up in to any seat very east these days.
Monday was supposed to be spent with my college roommate, but plans changed, and I took the chance to hit up the Old Navy maternity section like a boss. What I did not plan for was 3 separate stops for children to poop, a total meltdown in World Market over who sat where in their tiny buggies, and ice cream for lunch. Again, trips, not vacations with this stage of life.
I’m NEVER a briber. Like literally, I will cut you if you offer my kid food in the grocery store, and don’t you dare breath a word about a toy. I do not reward whiny or bad behavior just for the sake of other shoppers ears, but after Hank decided to walk up onto a display of patio furniture and sit on a table, Amos dumping out a bucket of wind up rabbits, and Margaret Hannah screaming about how much she “reckons it’s a real big problem for my brother to be in this buggy right now and I can’t find my boots anymore,” I was done. We left World Market with a plastic egg of silly putty, a toy batman, and a felt horse with matching comb.
I was over it.
Then, they napped in the car for the 12 minute ride back to the hotel. We ALWAYS nap in this pack. No matter what. Like, we could go pro we nap so well over here. This time, all three got together and decided the power nap was plenty, and there was no sense in even trying for anything more.
You had to have your room key to get to your floor, but I’ll be dang if I didn’t have to march my happy end and all of my children back down to the lobby 4 times to get the card rekeyed JUST SO we could get back to the room. The last time we had to do it, I pulled the fun mom card and let them take the escalator up to a different bank of elevators. Hank’s the only one who’s ever been on one, and Marnana lost her mind. She fell, couldn’t get her balance, and kept yelling about how to stand up. I could not stop laughing at her. You would have to, stop yer judging.
But we all survived and went back to the room so I could
have a drink regroup and pull my compression sock off for a few minutes. I opened the door, and Hank ran to the bed crying his “I’m really hurt” cry. Turns out he burnt his finger on a light under the reception desk but was afraid he’d get in trouble if he said anything about it. MH ended up being the one to tell me exactly what happened since he still wouldn’t confess to trying to unscrew a decorative bulb in the Riverview logo. Great trip. For sure.
When Pat called to say he wasn’t going to be back for dinner, I made the decision there was NO WAY we were getting back in the parking deck just to get supper. Instead, we went back down 26 floors and over 2 blocks to a pizza place. Everybody eats pizza.
Hank had 4 slices, MH wanted spaghetti but only had 3 bites of it, and Amos yelled “HI BOY!” to everyone who walked in or by. There were a lot of other people from the conference around, so we didn’t stand out so bad, except for when Marnana asked the waitress if she could turn down that too loud music, and when Hank knocked over his cup because he was trying to shove his smuggled-in-his-jacket batman into a straw. And it wouldn’t have been a successful meal if they didn’t ALL have to go poop before we left.
I love being a mama.
I really do.
I knew better than to take all this on.
Oh well. We’re here now!
We grabbed donuts and chocolate milks Tuesday morning, packed up ASAP, and started out for home by 9 AM. Pat was still at the conference, but he was able to help us get situated before we left, and it made a big difference. All of that easy-start to the day got thrown out the window when Margaret Hannah couldn’t hold it in the car a second longer. I pulled off at the Satsuma exit, like 25 minutes from where we left, and they all said they needed Arby’s like they need to breathe.
Nope. Pee and get back in this car. I will not extend this trip any longer than necessary.
Our happy ending to this adbenture was one last pit stop at KFC, enough chocolate chip cookies for the ride home from there, and a really successful night at t-ball practice for Hank. I think we all were asleep by 9.
We’d planned on some day trips to the beach before Porter gets here, but I’m a little gun shy right now. A few days of clear skies and warm weather will make me forget Mobile for sure, but until then, I’ve got my feet propped up, and I’m making the kids play with the crap they got from World Market every time they tell me they’re bored.