- Need more family time?
- Making Memories!
- How did you spend your Easter?
- How to get your kids to bed easily after all that Easter candy!
- Roadside Etiquette.
- How to See the country AND meet the people!
Any of those titles would have worked. You see, last night I got to spend 3 hours alone in the dark with my children. They got to see their Dad be a hero for us, and sacrifice his own comfort. They also were able to see chivalry in action as other men also gave of their time and comfort to help us.
We went to an Easter cantata at another church last night. We enjoyed it, despite the fact that I didn't initially want to go out on a rainy night to a strange church because I'm an introvert and my husband is not. But on the way home we took a different route. We decided to proceed on the road the church was on, rather than backtrack to the little highway. What we didn't know was that the gravel was going to end in 2 miles, and the dirt road would be clay mud.
We soon found out as the Suburban hit the mud and immediately began to slip and slide. We finally slid to a stop sort of on the side of the road, and were totally stuck. We couldn't add enough traction to move forward or back. My shoe was sucked off by the mud and my white sock may never be the same again. The floor board of the Suburban (along with the gas and brake pedals) still show the evidence of the thick mud that caked our shoes (and our pants, and Steve's jacket, and his tie.)
Steve walked back to a house, only to discover it was vacant. He walked forward (in the cold rain) to see if there were houses ahead of us ... there weren't. He finally walked and jogged back the two miles to the church we had been visiting. Thankfully there were still people there cleaning up from their refreshments. They called a church member with a BIG OLD 4-wheel drive truck. Well, the truck couldn't get us out because it was getting stuck itself. So the two men (Greg and Darren) who'd come with the truck stood around outside in the rain with Steve while they waited for Greg's Dad to bring his tractor to tow us out.
The tractor was able to get us out and then we followed them back to the church, where we discovered Darren's wife and baby waiting in their car (for over an hour). I felt even worse then, when I realized she too was sitting around in a car in the dark. We were safely on our way home, then, with a few lessons learned.
- Don't drive unknown gravel roads in the rain, especially after dark.
- Children can sit in a confined space in the dark for 3 hours if there's enough adrenalin to make it exciting.
- Children can come up with some wild scenarios in that time-frame.
- Children need lots of reassurance and encouragement to be patient.
- Sometimes a refresher course on how to relieve oneself on the side of the road is a good thing. While most of our children took to this refresher course easily, one was rather miserable while "holding out" for our rescue and sprinted to the bathroom when we reached the church again and found out it was unlocked.
- Chivalry is not dead, and Steve isn't the only chivalrous man who still remains.
- Kansas is full of "good Christian neighbors".
- The family of God is the best network.
- God takes care of His children.
- My children are pretty much all afraid of the dark.
- John Deere tractors are cute after they rescue us; 13 yo A really wants one. We'd better watch out that no young man ever has to rescue her, or he might be so cute she wants to bring him home, too.
- Silliness helps relieve tension.
- Baby G can honk the horn with his rear end if he's dancing on your lap in the driver's seat.
- We know how to make memories, even if we don't intend to.
- We really love each other.
- Children fall asleep quickly when they get home after midnight, despite all the Easter candy sugar highs.
While I don't really recommend sitting on the side of the road, stuck in the mud, for 3 hours on Easter -- it really wasn't too bad. Other than the continual discussion over whether or not a certain child could hold it any longer, it really was enjoyable spending the focused time together. It would have been better if Steve were in the car with us, rather than shivering in the cold rain, but it was also good for the kids to see him be the hero.
On a different note: leave it to one of my kids to play with their gum on the way to visit a different church, and leave it to one of my kids to wrap his gum around his neck. He still has gum remnants there this morning. So in addition to cleaning muddy clothes and shoes, I get to figure out how to get the gum off my 5 year old's neck.
Trusting in Him,