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  • Writer's pictureElizabeth Mowers

Summer Road Trip

For a lot of folks, summertime means hitting the open road. My family and I are no different, trying to piece together a few days soon to hop in the truck and get to the beach.

As I am a bit of a planner, I have perfected my travel/vacation list. It goes a little something like this:

A few days before we are scheduled to leave for vacation, I pull out my packing list from our last vacation and tailor it a bit for the new upcoming trip.

I have a to-do list titled "Buttoning Up the House".

I have a list of things to keep in the truck with us, especially since some people in my family are prone to car sickness. (Did you know that smelling a fresh lemon helps settle an upset stomach?)

And each person in my family has a packing list so they don't forget anything. This prevents me from following behind them and reminding them to pack swimming shoes or even worse - just packing everyone's suitcase myself. (Ain't nobody got time for that.)

My packing lists bring me peace of mind. If I have checked off everything on the list, I can leave for vacation without that nagging feeling that I have forgotten something. You know the feeling I'm talking about. Remember the mom in the 90s movie, Home Alone? They rush out of the house so quickly she doesn't remember she left her kid at home until she and her family are flying over the Atlantic.

Poor mom.

When I was a kid, my family wouldn't leave until we all sat quietly in the house for a minute. My dad liked to have a few minutes to quiet his mind so he could remember whether or not he had forgotten anything. Usually, we'd think of something!

As an adult, I learned that this practice stems from an ancient superstition. Apparently, spirits in your house who are angry about you leaving, will be tricked into thinking you are not leaving. After those quiet moments to appease the spirits, you can slip out of your house without any problem. While my dad didn't do this for any superstitious reason, I think it's funny to think about people over the generations doing this same thing.

I also tend to look back at my little house when we leave and say a prayer for our travels. If I don't say my prayer before we reach the end of the driveway, my husband will stop the truck and my kids will prompt me. Vacation hasn't started until Mom gets that prayer in!

So what about you? Do you have any rituals before leaving for a trip? Where are you heading this summer?

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