Probably the only thing I used to dread about going on trips was doing all the packing for three people—myself plus the kids. Last year for a week-long Caribbean vacation, I think I must have logged close to two hours to make sure that we had everything and didn’t forget a thing. So when kids get to the age when they’ve got it figured out and can pack for themselves, it’s a real time-saver.
Last weekend, I was still helping them figure out how to get the most into their backpacks for a three-day trip. But this weekend, they both seemed to have it all figured out, and did very well without any help. In fact, I was almost absent for the entire process. Almost. In doing the final check and giving my stamp of approval, I noticed that the Boy did regress into a four-year-old’s world of logic, which brought on a moment of head-scratching for me: True, he did successfully pack three outfits, all well-coordinated for colour and season-appropriateness, folded together and packed away neatly, along with toiletries and spending money. But inexplicably, he also decided that a weekend in Detroit required six wooden tops (the old-fashioned spinning toy) and a foam light sabre.
When they get packing right, it makes every family trip smooth sailing. But even when they’re slightly off, it makes for some pretty funny entertainment.