Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Great American Road Trip, part 1, and Vacationland Update

Well, we're finishing up day two of the Great American Road Trip, and I wanted to check in for a quick minute.   Our internet connection and time is kind of spotty while on the road (as in, non-existent for all of Texas, pretty much!).   I'm about to crawl into bed, but wanted to give you guys a few updates.

Let's see, day one took us from Phoenix to Albuquerque.  It was a great day for traveling, although we had to go back quickly after leaving because we forgot to reset the sprinkler system at our old house (no sprinkler system = no grass in the desert, which would NOT be appealing to whomever is living in our house next!).   Other than that, we had a fun day exploring the "high desert" of Arizona.

Our first stop in Albuquerque was fantastic - let's just say that if you EVER need somewhere to stay in that town, check out the Residence Inn.  They were amazing - I honestly have NEVER stayed in a hotel and been given better customer service.   Definitely go there if you're heading through New Mexico!

Second stop tonight is Oklahoma City.   It was a LOOOOONNNNNGGGGGG day of driving, but we made it safely to our second hotel.   We made a quick dinner (yay for suites with kitchens!), and headed back out to the car to visit the memorial for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.   While the museum was not open, the memorial itself is open 24 hours, and I can honestly say that I am very glad we came at night.   The memorial is beautiful and awe-inspiring when lit up at night, and the fact that there were only a handful of people there with us made it very easy to take our time and explain things to the boys at their speed and on their level.  I'm very  happy we were delayed today and ended up at the memorial late  (I'm also super thankful for the scavenger hunt - I can honestly say that I probably would have scrapped the idea of going to the memorial because we got here so late, but we didn't want to skip it, thanks to your support.   I'm so glad we didn't.  It was something I will never forget and something that I am so grateful that the boys were able to see).  

Next item of business:  the Vacationland (lobster) giveaway.  We're waiting for the official list of donors from Reece's Rainbow, just to make sure we didn't miss anyone's entry.  Once we get that, will pop out the name of the person that gets a lobster dinner on us.  Thanks so much for helping us make this road trip an awesome one!   

Last but not least, a HUGE thank you to everyone who's donated since our matching fund was announced.  We've had $625 come in from you guys, which is turning into $1250 after Johnny and Alison match it.   We are overwhelmed and so very grateful for your generosity!  THANK YOU!

You'll find an updated scavenger hunt list under the pictures - I'll keep crossing things off as we find them!

Some pictures from our journey so far (these are all from my phone, I will upload the ones from the real camera once we get to Maine):

Peter's big brother playing with the toy of the day:  a cookie sheet covered in chalkboard paint, chalk, and magnets

A rainbow over New Mexico (taken by Peter's big brother, NOT me - I was driving!)

"Cadillac Ranch" outside of Amarillo, TX

The boys thought it was AWESOME that Daddy remembered the spray paint AND that we got to use it!

Our addition to the artwork - Let's hear it for our Spartans!

Across the street from the OKC memorial - a statue of Jesus weeping

Looking at the memories on the fence surrounding the memorial

Mommy and the boys at the OKC memorial

Current Scavenger Hunt findings:

Honey bee hive - we tried in Albuquerque, which is apparently a "bee friendly" city, but according to the Bee Keepers Association, none of the hives are on public land.  We'll keep looking!!

Memorial Park in OKC

The “Gateway to the West” arch in St Louis

Tumbleweed -  saw some in AZ, but we were going 75 miles an hour and couldn't get a picture!!

Philly cheese steak sandwich

Amish baked goods

Kite, toy, or Frisbee stuck in a tree

GW Bridge or Tappan Zee bridge in NYC

The Mississippi River

Welcome Center in Portsmouth, NH

Welcome to Maine sign

Hudson River

Red leaves

Pine trees

NYC skyline

Red barn

MacIntosh Apples

Amish horse and buggy


A waterfall

The Atlantic ocean


Our house in Maine

Maine license plate - saw one while driving today, but couldn't snap a picture.  We'll try to find another one in a parking lot so we can capture it!

a cowboy


  1. These notes are so wonderful to read. I love road trips, discovered that this past spring when Sam & I headed south for family visits. As always, prayers being said for safe travels and may you find everything on your scavenger list.. what great memories you are making..

  2. I highly, highly, highly recommend the Tappan Zee, unless you are looking to spend a long (possibly an hr or more, depending...) time in city traffic!