Summer Roadtrip and Rodeo, First Edition

This past Friday, while everyone else in America was gearing up to see George Strait at Cowboys Stadium, Layne, Laurie, Matt, Trevor, Claire, me, Joe, Beechnut, Hollywood, and Chance loaded up and made the drive to central Texas so the guys could compete in a ranch rodeo that night. Joe, Beechnut, and Hollywood are horses, and Chance is our new puppy, so they rode in the horse trailer with our luggage. All six humans, however, rode in Layne’s flat-bed crew-cab work truck. It took 8 hours, five stops, three drivers, two car seats, one headlight, and no trailer brakes to arrive at our destination. Whose idea WAS this?!

Matt and Layne had an approximate combined total of four hours of sleep the week before, so they couldn’t drive too many miles, and riding in a vehicle with Laurie behind the wheel scares me and everyone else on the road, so I drove the last few hours home.   I’d never pulled a trailer before, much less a goose-neck with three horses and no brakes, so I went slowly enough in each town that the red lights turned green before I reached each one and I never really had to stop. I think I did well.

As I first rolled out of town to begin my leg of the driving, something was pulling and felt as if we had a flat. Great… A truck in front of us pulled over, so I pulled over, figuring they’d noticed and were going to help us out. Upon inspection, all tires were full of air. The only issue was that the dog kennel that we had placed on the back of the truck at our last stop so the puppy could get some fresh air, had sailed up above the flatbed, tumbled around, and wedged between the nose of the trailer and the edge of the bed. Whoopsie. We moved Chance back to the inside of the trailer and off we went, dog intact.

A few miles later, Trevor developed a sudden earache, which he informed us of  by screaming crying, so the next stop was at a pharmacy to buy some ear medicine. At one point, both kids may or may not have manipulated Matt, who was in the back between the two giant thrones car seats, into getting them out and sitting in his lap while I drove and pretended no safety laws were being violated. Funny how being out of a car seat makes a three-year-old’s ear stop hurting.

The really great thing about this trip is that I found a new way to torture children.

When they’re sick with a random and super annoying summer cold, a good mom:  a) cuddles her babies in the recliner while quarantined at home, or b) straps them in restrictive car seats for eight hours for a weekend full of fun. Did you say B? You are wrong! Only the Meanest Mom in the World would take her sick baby girl in the car with a little bit of Tylenol and some Kleenex, then drag her to a rodeo and make her play in the dirt until 11:00 at night.

“You’re 15 months old, Claire, suck it up!” And blow your nose already!

These kids are troopers. We made it to the rodeo in time for the steak dinner, watched our team compete, made it back to Matt’s parents’ house by midnight, then spent Saturday at an outdoor birthday party in the humid jungle of Throckmorton, average daily temperature 217 degrees. Sunday, we left around bedtime to make the drive back home, both kids in pajamas and ready to sack out. Except for a couple of puking episodes with Claire, Pizza Hut being 20 minutes behind on our order, and a severe thunderstorm, we made it safely home at 1:00 am.

So…how was your weekend?  I bet George was awesome.



 Finally let them out of the car; playing at the rodeo.


 Watching Dad. It’s late.


Bubbles + Fan = Great Party

Happy 1st birthday, Ford and Greer!


Our first stop on the return journey.  Claire walking off her puking episode on the highway with Aunt Laurie.

Did I mention, Meanest Mom Ever…




Texting conversation with a friend on the drive home.  This sums it up.


5 thoughts on “Summer Roadtrip and Rodeo, First Edition

  1. What a great road trip story! Lots of adventures to share with your kids when they get older. Reminds me of some of our cross country trips, family jammed in the minivan with all our stuff and the cat that got carsick (every time). Then she would yowl for hours so I can identify with the high pitched whining! Finally got medication from vet to give cat and on that trip thought I killed her; her eyes rolled up and she went totally limp and stayed that way for hours. But she didn’t puke!

    Rebecca Thieme Sent from my iPad


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