Sunday, October 3, 2010

Go-to-OBX Plan

It's business planning session for me at work this time of year. Everyone is all "strategy" and "go-to-market" and "is that objective measurable?"

So, when Adam and I decided that we would drive to the Outer Banks for vacation with our two boys, we brainstormed A LOT about how to make the 12 hour car ride as smooth possible. Here is our go-to-OBX plan. And before anyone asks, no we didn't really write a plan (but we did spend hours talking through the issues)

Situational Analysis
Our children hate the car. Mandy cannot sleep in the car.

1. To maximize our time in the Outer Banks and not waste an entire vacation day driving.
2. To make the 12 hour car ride as pleasant as possible.

1. Leave at 10:00 pm and drive through the night.
In order to us to be able to drive through the night, Adam needed to come home from work a little early and take a nice, long nap. This would allow him to take the first driving shift while I slept. While Adam slept, I would do some last minute packing and play outside with the boys to get them tired.

2. Provide the boys with a variety of entertainment, food and, if possible, benadryl.
Adam's sister loaned us their portable DVD player and dual screens. We packed their favorite food, juice boxes, crafts, books and toys. If all else fails, benadryl will do the trick.

We've decided not to come home. The thought of the drive back to Ohio is just too unbearable. I'm exaggerating a little. But it seriously sucked!

After a 4 hour nap, Adam woke up and we loaded the boys in the car and were out the door 30 minutes early. The boys stayed up sooooo late watching a movie and jabbering. They were both finally asleep by 11:30 so I tried to nap as well. Nope, can't nap. I suck at sleeping in the car. Every bump, turn signal and tap of the brakes wakes me. By the time I was finally too exhausted to stay awake, the boys started to wake up from discomfort. Neither could get comfortable in their car seats. I tried pillows, blankets, those little neck pillow things for airplanes, another movie, toys, snacks, juice, EVERYTHING! Lots of screaming and dozing off, followed by more screaming continued for several more hours. Not even benadryl made a difference. I was able to get about one hour of sleep in three separate sessions.

After 7 hours of driving, Adam traded places with me and I drove the rest of the way. We arrived several hours earlier than anticipated and our condo wasn't ready yet so we stopped at Virginia Beach on the way down to the Outer Banks and played on the beach. We played for an hour or so before heading to our condo.

When we arrived, we were all exhausted. Really, really exhausted. We unpacked and looked around before everyone was ready to collapse. A very fussy Jude made our dinner at a local brewery that followed the three hour nap quite a miserable experience but the food was great. We all got a ton of sleep last night and spent the first part of today playing with toys and watching the enormous waves in the ocean. It's rainy today, but we're definitely okay with that. It's forcing us to relax.

Jonah playing at Virginia Beach

A very tired Adam trying to make the most of Virginia Beach. While I was taking this picture, Jonah fell in a wave and got soaked. Seconds later a wave came really far up on the beach and ALMOST claimed our camera.

The amazing view from our condo.

Feeling well rested today


  1. Oh that sounds like about 10 nervous breakdowns on the way to the beach. Good thing all that sand and salt water makes you forget.

  2. Jason, I thought about you and Kate the entire time I wrote this. After reading that traveling Q&A article by Kate, I knew all this "strategy" would make her skin crawl:)