The Loves of my Life!

The Loves of my Life!
Brett, Caleb, & Isabella

Friday, July 30, 2010

Flat Tires & Road Trips

We took our first road trip with 3 kids a month ago. We set out on June 30th at 8:15 PM. Our plan was to drive through the night so that we wouldn't have to stop as often to feed Bella who was only 3 weeks old. I fed her at 7 and then we strapped all 3 kids in their car seats and headed out. My mom's house is 5 hours and 15 minutes drive from Kansas City, so we planned on arriving there around 2 AM.
Steven's 13 year old nephew, Anthony, was visiting us from southern California and along for the ride. He doesn't like road trips. Little did he know, he was in for quite a ride!

Our trip went something like this:
8:15 PM Leave our house on Indiana Avenue.
8:20 PM Arrive at nearest gas station to fill up the gas tank of our 2002 Astro which would allow us to make it all the way to my mom's without stopping to refuel.
8:25 PM Steven climbs in the van to start the engine. We find out the battery is lifeless. In an effort to keep everyone comfortable, Steven had left the battery on so the air would continue to circulate through the van. He forgot and took his time filling up.
8:27 PM Steven calls a friend who was working on his truck at our house to come with jumper cables. So we wait. I take Caleb out of his car seat because he was already starting to fuss. We walk around the gas station parking lot waiting on our friend to arrive.
8:35 PM Our friend arrives. The men jump the battery. The van starts. We all hop in to drive off. The van is dead again. Steven jumps out to catch our friend before he drives off.
8:45 PM They jump the van a second time. This time the charge holds.
8:55 PM We leave the gas station heading for the nearest bank. On the freeway 1 mile from our exit, (for the bank) traffic is moving slowly. Police cars are blocking off the freeway.
9:00 PM As we inch down the freeway to our exit, we realize that we have a flat tire. We plunk down the exit and 1/2 mile down the road and pull over in a Lowe's parking lot. Steven calls our free roadside assistance only to find out that they can't help us unless we have a spare or emergency tire. We don't.
9:05 PM We plunk our way across the Lowe's parking lot to the Target parking lot.

9:10 PM Steven runs inside to purchase "Fix-A-Flat" tire kits.
9:20 PM Steven begins fixing the flat.
9:30 PM Steven runs inside to wash his hands while the tire is being filled with air using a car charged air pump.
9:33 PM I decide to begin documenting our road trip with pictures.

Anthony & Brett

Bella fast asleep



Hard at work!

9:45 PM The tire is aired up and we are on the road again. We make it to the bank. We decide to go back to our house on Indiana Avenue to grab an extra tire and to feed Bella before we set out a second time.
10:00 PM Arrive at our house. Steven grabs a tire. I start feeding Bella. The boys are asleep.
10:45 PM Bella is done eating. We experience Deja Vu as we leave our house on Indiana Avenue and drive to the same gas station where our battery died 2 1/2 hours earlier.
11:15 PM I'm sleepy and decide to take a nap while Steven is driving.
11:40 PM Steven wakes me up. He announces that our tire has just blown.
11:42 PM I listen carefully as we plunk down the freeway trying to reach our nearest exit (1/2 mile away) before we pull off the side of the road.
11:45 PM Our tire is completely shredded. We are thumping down the exit. Steven accidently hits a reflector sign with our already broken passenger side mirror. (We won't discover the broken mirror until hours later). We continue thumping along through a stop sign, heading for a fireworks store parking lot.
11:49 PM We realize the road taking us to the parking lot is too long, so we take a short cut through the grass. We take a hard plunk off the curb, praying that it doesn't destroy the rim of the blown out tire.
12:00 AM Steven calls roadside assistance. They tell us that someone will be there within an hour to help us.
12:10 AM Caleb wakes up crying.
12:35 AM Brett wakes up crying.
12:41 AM I decide to again document our trip with pictures.
Hanging out



Blown Out

12:50 AM The man arrives to help us fix our tire. I'm glad I wasn't alone. He was scarry looking
12:55 AM He jacks the van and removes the tire. We take a walk down the road in the briskly cold night.
1:00 AM He leaves for his shop to mount a new tire on the rim which isn't busted. : ) PTL! We climb back in the van.
1:20 AM I wake up Bella to feed her before we take off again.
1:35 AM The man comes back to put the tire back on the van.
2:00 AM We are once again ready for take off.
2:05 AM We arrive at a gas station to top off the fuel tank and use the bathroom.
2:15 AM We hit the road running!
5:35 AM Bella wakes up hungry. I hop in the back with a bottle and feed her.
5:45 AM We pull over to burp Bella. The boys wake up crying. : (
7:35 AM We finally arrive at my mom's who feeds us a filling breakfast of toast and scrambled eggs!


  1. Hi, Sandra's cousin, Lydia here. I enjoyed your blog. What a crazy roadtrip! You guys didn't give up, I commend you for that! Your kids are the cutest!

  2. Wow!! I hope the next time you take a trip it goes much better for you!