road-tripThis is one of those stories that simply must be shared: How one mom stopped her kids from sniping at one another throughout the family holiday road trip.

This mom, who will remain nameless to protect her from her kids, knew that the family road trip would be a disaster. All of the other road trips had been. Why would this one be any different?

In a desperate move, she laid down the gauntlet: If the kids started fighting, she would turn the car around and head home. It didn’t matter if they were one block from home or one block from their destination. If there was fighting, there would be no family vacation.

The fateful week arrived. She spent a day packing the car, prepping the house and getting everyone in the car and settled. She pulled out of the driveway and made it to the end of the block before the first complaint. “Mom, he’s in my space,” one kid whined.

She hit the brakes, turned around and said, “I told you guys–if you fight, no vacation.” Then she did the hardest thing a parent has to do: She backed up her threat with action. She turned the car around and drove home.

familytravelAs she pulled into the driveway, the kids were shell-shocked. They couldn’t believe she really meant it–until she started unloading the car and assigning kids to carry suitcases back into the house.

Second Chances

Once the car was unloaded and the kids realized they had blown it, they started making promises.

“Give us another chance.”

“We won’t fight.”

“We promise.”

She decided to relent and promised that if they were good for an entire week, she would consider taking them on vacation the following week.

They promised, and they delivered. So the following Saturday, they packed up the car again and headed off on a peaceful, fun, family holiday.

The secret she never told the kids? That was the week they were supposed to be on vacation. The previous week had all been a ruse.

She did have to pack (and unpack) twice. But the mom says it was a small price to pay to buy her a peaceful drive and a wonderful family holiday.