quick trip

Well, we're home from a whirlwind trip to Washington.  Mikelle is no longer engaged and there is always comfort to be found in the woods of Washington, so she and I and the four boys made the drive.  It was a long drive for a short visit, but I don't claim that my motivations were selfless.  I love it there, even the drive is peaceful with it's big skies and green fields.  This time of year is particularly pretty, before the heat turns everything brown.  Mikelle and I marveled at the scenery.  She drove mostly on the way up.  I was the seat hopper, trying to keep everyone happy.  They were really good most of the time, but it is a tiring job. We stopped for the night at my cousin's house.  He's quite a bit older, so we haven't been great at staying in touch but it was really great to see them again.  We only caught up briefly; we arrived very late and he left early for work the next morning.  His wife is so nice, just laid back and so nice and it was very easy to feel at home with them.  Their home is beautiful and their children were so sweet.  Not to mention that their guest bed was probably the best I've ever slept in.  We were back on the road by 8ish, geared up for the remaining 7.5 hours.

Our first stop was at Eric and Andy's.  We got to meet my newest niece May and she is the sweetest little girl I've ever met.  We spent hours and hours together over the course of the weekend and I never heard a peep out of her.  She just looked around with her big eyes, taking in the world as only a new baby can.  It was so good to spend time with Eric and Andy and all of their sweet girls (May is number 3). 

Before heading out to Deer Park, we met up with my parents at Seth's soccer game in Cheney.  The reunion was joyful...my mom had a pack of gum for each of the boys.=)  Noah ate piece after piece until the pack was gone while Taylor carefully saved all but two.  It was a perfect day, Seth played so well, but they lost anyway.  (Later in the week we went to another soccer game and they won, qualifying their team for state.  Today they played their first state game and barely lost...he still has 2 more years of high school, so maybe they'll get another shot at it=)  Mom drove my van home and it was great to catch up with her.  Just everyone.  The property is beautiful, the house is home, the people are mine.  My boys disappear with Peter and Marielle and Ruthie for hours on end...jumping on the trampoline, exploring the woods, watching them play video games, playing in the little cabin.

Brian played in a soccer game as well and scored a goal!  He is tall now, slightly taller than Seth even, and such a nice kid.  At fourteen, he's funny and thoughtful and just so nice.  He and Seth gave up their room for us without a complaint.  They watched the boys so we could go to some yard sales.  Marielle is turning twelve this summer.  I can hardly believe it.  She is the age I was when I moved to Georgia.  I remember those days very well.  Family often remarks on our many similarities, but she's miles better than I was at that age.  On Friday night we watched a movie she picked out from the library.  It was called Ashpet and it was a Cinderella story.   It was...alright. It was funny, that is for sure. As Andy read the back cover she remarked that one of the bonus features was "how to make a movie on a shoestring" so we knew we were in for a treat.   

I was also able to attend my cousin Allison's Wedding.  She was absolutely glowing.  She looked so beautiful in the dress her mom had made (it was incredible) but  it was her happiness that made her look so radiant.  They just seem so happy.  It was wonderful to see all of her siblings as well.  I got to see Brooke one last time before they leave for Africa and hold her sweet baby Natalie.  She was all smiles. I'll miss them, but I'm excited to hear about all of their adventures.

Some of my favorite moments were just outside with the boys.  We went on a few bug hunts and I loved their enthusiasm. I didn't bring my camera, thinking I'd just use my mom's if I needed to.  There were a few times that I was really kicking myself over this because I never really did use hers until Sunday.  We went over to the Wilson's to see their new kittens and puppies.  Oh, how the boys loved that!  I snapped a few cute ones, but never did send them to myself, so who knows if I'll ever get them posted.  

Kevin flew up on Sunday to help me drive home.  This allowed Mikelle to stay a little longer and it allowed me to enjoy the ride.  Not that I didn't enjoy it with Mikelle, of course I did.  It was just fun to spend so many hours with Kev.  We read "Siblings Without Rivalry" on the way home.  It was a good book that I really recommend.  My mom loves it, but I hadn't read it before this trip.  It's an easy read, gives lots of practical examples and really helps you to think about what you are doing to strengthen and weaken sibling relationships in your children.

Even with a good book and a night spent in Boise to break up the trip, a 13 hour car ride with four little boys is an adventure.  Kevin's phone died, leaving us without a GPS somewhere in Oregon at around 10 pm. Our car charger wasn't working.  We hadn't written down directions to our friend's house and now we were without a phone or even the phone number we needed.  It took some time to get it all straightened out.  Kevin was searching several stores for a charger, then tracking down the phone number he needed, then writing directions.  I'm trying to deal with kids who have already been in the car for 5 hours and are SO tired, and tired of all the snacks I have to offer, and tired of the van.  In the midst of this, Noah threw up all over himself and his car seat.  It's almost better that it happened really.  It threw me into a comical "could it get any worse" time to buck up mode and it was all really quite pleasant from then on.  It even started raining as I was scrubbing out the carseat=)  Like in the movies when they say "could it get any worse" and then rain starts pouring.  It was bad in a perfect way.  We got back on the road and arrived in Boise at around 12:15.  Kevin's friend, Nick (his best friend since high school), had realized after hanging up the phone that he'd given one wrong street name in the directions, but had no way of letting us know.  So he was jogging around his neighborhood, past midnight, waiting for us so he could get us safely to his home.  SO sad.  He was ambiguous about how long he'd been waiting, but I think it was at least half an hour.  He just had a smile on his face though and they had their family room all set up, complete with pack and play for us.  Off again at 7:30...

Long drive, short trip.  Worth it.  We'll go back in a month when my brother is in town...

hopefully I'll get back into the swing of posting regularly again now.

Also.  Karate Kid is on TV and Kevin is watching it again.  I swear, he watches it all the time.  I'm not kidding, in the last 6 months I've seen this final fight scene at least 4 times. It's good and all, but not that good.


  1. Glad you're back, I've missed your posts! I'm sorry to hear about Mikelle's engagement, but better now than later. Hope she is at peace with it all. How nice of you to drive her home. Sounds like a nice and yet exhausting trip!

  2. You remind me of my mother the way you see the good even in the throw up and cleaning the carseat in the rain! I enjoyed reading the details of your trip. But I'm so sorry what Mikelle is going through...but like I've heard it said, "A broken engagement is a successful engagement."

  3. "It was bad in a perfect way." What a positively classic line! I love your attitude.

  4. Funny that you mention Karate Kid. It's Michael's favorite movie of ALL time and he could watch that movie over and over again. We have the DVD and he has seen every single extra on it.

  5. I'm sorry about Mikelle's engagement. Sounds like an eventful trip...have to agree about the line "It was bad in a perfect way.". Love it!

  6. I am so sorry for Mikelle. Sending hugs her way. I am glad that you got a chance to go to Washington though!

  7. Wow-what a trip! An amazing mother with an amazing attitude...as always! Seriously I hope I'm so easy-going when I have 4 kids!! I miss you by the way!

  8. I'm glad you got to go, but I sympathize with the long car trips -- it seems we always have one of ours throwing up too.

    And I wish the best for Mikelle. Even if the breakup was for the best of reasons, that's got to be hard to handle.


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