2009HondayOdysseyEver since I moved away from my family in pursuit of a mensch to call my very own, traveling back home to visit family has become more hectic. First it was just us, a no brainer flight from New York to Chicago to meet the family. All we had to worry about was our own baggage. Today, I pack for my entire family to eliminate more tasks for my husband to accomplish. I’m not complaining about being a mother, I’m just interested in the safest, cost effective, and anxiety free excursion with 3 kids, ages 4, 2, and 1. We all fit comfortably into a Honda Odyssey.

Life experience and three kids later, I am the proud parent of a Honda Odyssey and I love it! My DH and I joke about how we love our mini-van and still jam out to tunes (most of them are kid songs, but they sound great). My DH still drives the Volvo, but I take our precious cargo (our 3 kids) on many excursions. In order to be in Chicago in time for BlogHer, we drove 15 hours straight, from Queens, NY, to Chicago, IL. I felt less stressed because we didn’t have to rush and catch a flight. This journey was an excellent experience and I drove more than my husband for the first time. He was basically along for the ride (he had to catch plane back to NY just hours after we arrived in Chicago. He wasn’t complaining at all, in fact, he kept commenting on how comfortable he was in the back seat (in between catching some much needed sleep). He actually drove the most difficult leg of the trip, the 1:00 am-6:00 am shift. I am not such a fan of night driving, especially on a long stretch of highway. Thankfully, there was no traffic and he made really good time. I also learned the value of cruise control on long trips. I never knew that beside convenience, it also reduces the amount of gas used (I really never knew that).

Driving on the road makes me very hungry. Since we keep kosher, we had our cooler full of the usual suspects (snack requests) and kept the entire family from going hungry. What do expect, I’m a Jewish mother?  We also had plenty of milk and bottles ready to go (thank you Playtex Drop-Ins Liners for making this process so much easier). Our kids drank a gallon of milk during those 15 hours.

Whether you drive a Ford or a Honda, there are certain things that you just don’t skimp on when it comes to the family cruising vessel.