As you may know, this Dumb Family is less than two weeks away from hitting the road on a possibly (depending on how nutty these little monkeys get) once in a lifetime road trip vacation to the sunny beaches of Myrtle Beach South Carolina.
It is a super long drive.
Not cross country or anything but, for a family that has never ever even one time gone anywhere further than 2 and a half hours from door to door by car, this is HUGE.
So, we have been stocking up on junk fantastic products guaranteed to make our vacation suck less.
I’m going to tell you about some of the stuff before we go so you can give me the heads up on what might suck while I still have time to exchange it.
And, naturally, when we get back, I’ll let you know if my handy dandy top of car carrier thingy came detached, spewing my skirted swimsuits and granny panties all over I-95.
Some of it you can enter to win.
Some of it you can forget about winning because there is no way the Thule people were gonna give me or you the opportunity to win a $200 top of car carrier like the one we wanted (or the $100 one we bought either; hey, I’m on a budget).
And, some of the it will be useless to me, you, and every family ever to take a vacation ever because I am such a novice at this whole thing I have little clue of what we actually need!
When I booked this trip 7 LONG months ago during the worstest snow storm pretty much of all time, I started getting excited about where we would stay (we rented some beach house from some place that better not even try to be crawling with bugs, mice, bats or anything living), what we would do (mostly lay on the beach because that’s free, but hoping we will also get to take a dolphin spotting trip or something too), and of course, what we will bring.
Because I’m so anal retentive I actually started a list in my Dumb Life Book the same day I secured the house. I titled it, “Crap to get for trip,” and wrote down a bunch of, um, crap. It now has pictures ripped from magazines and business cards and sticky notes and brochures and all manner of junk sticking out of it.
Because I really am that dorky.
Here are the things we are definitely taking…
1. Top of car luggage thingy (excited because it just arrived on our doorstep yesterday!).
2. Bug lantern. Thank you Thermacell. I couldn’t wait for the trip to start using this because I am a bloody meat mosquito magnet. Seriously, I’m like Bella and every single mosquito within a 5 mile radius is Edward; they vant to suck my blooood. I literally use the thing daily so no way am I leaving it at home. I’m now a full blown mosquito repellant lantern addict.
3. Basket for carting all of our crap four blocks to the beach (four blocks isn’t that far, right? And, I’m on a budget, remember?!).
4. Junk for The Dudes to do in the car. We already got the National Geographic Kids Big Book of Fun for the reader, but we are still searching for other engaging items (aside from sleep and food) to keep them occupied and happy if they insist on being awake for our scheduled 3am departure time. Taking movie suggestions, but if you say Benji, possibly the most inappropriate kid movie ever, you will be blocked.
5. A better swimsuit for me. You’ve all heard about the tankini by now, and perhaps you’ll even get a chance to see it once we hit the beach, but don’t count on it.
6. Sun protection. We have a busted umbrella that we have to hold because I dropped the pointy part that goes in the ground under the deck. But, in preparation of our big excursion we also got one of those little sun tents that we LOVE (used it all swimming season AND at the wine fest we went to). And sunscreen, along with this new post-traumatic-burn cream called SunBurnt for Dumb Dad, the only family member NOT fortunate to be born with SPF-500 skin. He’s also the only family member who refuses to lather the sunscreen on effectively. One year he got fingerprint burned from only putting the stuff on where his little fingertips could easily reach. That was hi-lar-i-ous!
7. Rainy Day Activities. Gotta have something to do indoors in the event that Mother Nature decides to ruin our trip. And for the end of the day when The Dudes’ tired little minds are blown and they need something to do that allows them to leave mommy alone lie around the house quietly. Luckily I’ll have my laptop because I NEVER leave home without it and #1 and #2 can play Wiglington and Wenks,* the online game they have recently fallen in love with. It’s not quite as fun as playing the Wii apparently, but it’ll do when Mommy is hogging the TV by watching her DVR’ed shows that she can’t watch when #3 is doing his screaming banshee act in the evenings and on beach vacations when the Wii is DEFINITELY being left at home.
8. A new battery for my crummy HP laptop so that I can escape the “MOMMY-ARE-WE-THERE-YET?!” death chant by watching Twilight and New Moon repeatedly (because brooding vamps and sexually frustrated teenage girls are not annoying at all). Thing is, this is NOT gonna happen because the bloody things cost $65 smackers! Well, at least I’ll have my handy dandy iGo mobile charging device that will ensure that my Blackberry won’t die on me so I can Tweet the night away while I stay awake to make sure Dumb Dad stays awake while he’s driving (we are doing the whole leave at 3am dealy to trick The Dudes into sleeping for most of the trip).
9. Reading material. I’m taking Water for Elephants (yes, I’m still reading the flippin thing, but it’s because I keep getting side tracked with reality show finales and high school vampire books) which I fully intend to complete provided the beach heat doesn’t cause me to slip into a coma (it’d better not be that hot down there or so help me…). Dude #1 is taking some book #77 of BeastQuest, #2 is taking his National Geographic companion that is already requiring a huge slab of duct tape to keep it together, and #3 is bringing along Benjamin and Bumper to the Rescue (learn more about Ben & Bumper by checking out BraveMouse Books on Facebook) because I am sick to death of Goodnight Gorilla and My Truck is Stuck.
10. I don’t have a 10, but you know how I am with the round numbers thing.
So, want to win Dumb Mom’s Dumb Family Vacation Essential Gear Giveaway?
You can. And, it’s so super stinkin’ easy!
All you have to do is link a vacation related post here in which you share a time you traveled with (or as) a kid(s).
Figure this is a creative way to get you entered, share some fun posts, and give me some ideas to steal to help me survive the week (but if you aren’t a blogger, don’t despair, just read the fine print at the bottom to see how you can get entered to win too!).
One entry per link (enter as many as you want!) and you could win all of the following:
3. A month subscription to Wiglington and Wenks online gaming community.
4. An iGo mobile charger for the mobile device of your choice (I got a Blackberry one and I’m getting Dumb Dad an iphone one).
5. A copy of Benjamin and Bumper to the Rescue which comes with a super cute Make-a-Mouse gift pack to turn your reading experience interactive with cute mouse puppets!
*Two runner’s up will also be given a subscription to Wiglington and Wenks to share with the little people in their lives. I’ve got extras so I’m gonna share!
**Official sounding rules and such: Entrants must be residents of the US or Canada (or at least have a great aunt or long lost cousin living in the US or Canada who is willing to ship you the gifts to your remote foreign country after they receive them for you); giveaway closes August 27, 2010 at midnight Eastern Standard time and the winner will be announced Saturday, August 28, 2010 (this will be the only giveaway running here for this month so if you like winning stuff from me, and we both know you do, this is your only chance. I’ll be bringing you new stuff when school starts back up, maybe, if I feel like it); you can link as many posts as you want and each post counts as ONE entry (they can be from 4 years ago if you want, I don’t care, they count and I’ll read them, and even leave a comment. Just make sure they are about vacationing WITH kids, even if you are writing about a vacation you took AS a kid, and they’ll count.). Official sounding enough for you? AND, you don’t have to be a blogger to enter. Just follow my blog and leave a comment saying you’d like to enter and you’re in!