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I knew keeping up my blog while I was away on our family trip would be hard. I mean, I wasn’t planning on posting regularly, but I thought that would be more by choice than anything else. I figured, the kids would be in bed at a semi-reasonable time (once the jetlag wore off, hahahahaha) and we’d have to stay in the hotel room with nothing to do, so… if I felt like it, I could write something while Mike watched TV.

Oh, how naive I was pre-trip.

You see, it’s not just that Mazzy and Harlow’s internal clocks are eight hours behind or that we are all sleeping in one room (so any laptop use would have to be done covertly or in the bathroom), it’s that the kids DON’T SLEEP AT ALL. Or more accurately, by the time we get the kids to FINALLY go to sleep, Mike and I are both exhausted and fall right asleep as well. Usually, with the kids lying on top of us in one big jet lagged pile.

What’s that? We should have gotten a “suite” you say? We did. But “suite” doesn’t always mean a separate room. It might mean that your room is separated by a low partition or in our case, a large rotating television.

Also, in all three rooms we’ve stayed in on our trip, the girls are expected to sleep in one bed or one pull out couch. There is a reason I put my kids into separate beds when it’s lights out at home— it’s because Harlow and Mazzy together in a bed CAN NOT SETTLE.

“Settle down!” Mike yells from across the room. His unspoken words being— “I’m trying to watch a movie with headphones on my iPad!” This is followed by a brief period of silence, then giggles, then whispering, then low talking, then shouting, then wrestling and then someone yelling “Owwwww!!!” because they’ve been thrown from the bed.

“Come on, guys!” I yell. “If you can’t settle down, I will have to separate you!” The regret hanging in my words as soon as they leave my mouth. You know what “separate” means when you are all sharing one hotel room?

It means that one kid sleeps with Dad and the other sleeps with Mom and all the parental use of iPads and laptops must shut down immediately. Do not pass go, do not collect $200 and definitely do not finish watching the Season Finale of House of Cards. Every night I’ve ended up “sleeping” with Harlow, who tosses and turns and sings and tries to play games like no one has said, “HARLOW GO TO SLEEP!!!!” at least five thousand times.

When Harlow finally loses her battle with sleep and passes out (after literally hours), it’s usually with her head on my belly, her arm twisted around my leg and her foot pinning my elbow for good measure. There is no getting back up and checking email or writing a blog post in the bathroom. The only thing I can do is go to sleep myself. Which I do. Gladly. Because vacationing with kids is EXHAUSTING.

Wonderful, yes. But exhaustingly wonderful.

This is a big trip for the girls and for us as a family. I knew it would be challenging but the days have mostly been pretty amazing. There are meltdowns and disagreements but all normal negotiable stuff. It’s the nights that make it hard. Because after a long day of sightseeing as a family, the last thing you want is a night with no sleep or time for yourself.

All this is to say— sorry I haven’t blogged much since I left over a week ago. I didn’t send out the weekly newsletter and this month’s swag bag will be a little delayed. However, I have been having a blast posting pics on Instagram (@mommyshorts) and documenting my trip on Snapchat (ilanawiles). I hope you have been following!

Tonight, I was finally able to open my laptop after several days of it remaining shut. Harlow is asleep directly to my left and I am awake enough to write. Woohoo!!! But now I’m realizing, the other added difficulty of using your laptop in a hotel room at night, is that the battery power dwindles quickly and the plugs are horribly placed and your phone is currently charging with the one remaining adapter.

I’m currently at 7% battery power. I think I should post before my laptop powers down on it’s own.

Or before Harlow turns over and traps my typing hand with her foot.