kid's luggageBefore I had children, I expected that, once they arrived, I’d strap them to my back and travel the world. I really believed I’d tote them along to scale mountains and ski across glaciers. The kids would probably love all of that. There’s just one problem: I can’t carry all of the stuff they seem to need with them.

Tomorrow, I leave for a year in the UK.  I did this once before, about fifteen years ago.  Back then, when I was single and childless, I traveled with a duffel bag stuffed with clothes, sheets, a blanket and a couple towels, plus a laptop.  That was everything I needed.  This time, I’ve got two giant duffel bags, four suitcases, a backpack, a laptop in a carrying case, two car seats and a stroller. I’ve packed toys, crafts, snacks, sippy cups, dolls, a booster seat, plenty of diapers, backpack carriers for hiking, and many teeny-tiny truck and flower-adorned garments.  Thank goodness my parents are driving us to the airport to help my husband and I push all of this stuff to the ticket counter. We couldn’t do it on our own. The kids want to carry their own stuff, but we all know that isn’t going to happen.

Other people do seem to manage mega-adventures with their kids and, honestly, mine have stayed pretty happy despite the fact that all of their toys are now either in a suitcase or sealed away in a box in a closet.  Who knew my imaginative kids could keep so busy with packing tape, a broom and a dustpan.

So, maybe it is time to revisit the glacier ski expedition. Or at least it’s time to attempt some long hikes in Scotland.

If you don’t hear from me again, I lost my mind on our three-flight, overnight journey.  Otherwise, I’ll be writing next from Great Britain.

My novel, Drowning Cactus, is now available for purchase. I’ve been telling my friends that I’m leaving the country because the book is an exposé set in small town America, revealing their deepest darkest secrets.  That isn’t true.  My friends are all wonderful, kind, dull people.  Just kidding, guys!  You’re not dull at all. But my book isn’t about you, either. Maybe it should be, but it isn’t. Sorry, friends, and sorry, all you readers out there hoping to get the dirt on my friends.