Wednesday, January 22, 2014


I drove with the big boys to Tennessee this past weekend to visit my parents and youngest sister (and to escape the awfulness that is Iowa in January). Bennett had a long weekend off of school so I made arrangements for Channing to stay behind and the three of us set out on Thursday morning. It's always funny hearing some of my friends' reactions when I mentioned the road trip. "Ten hours?? By yourself??" Someone asked me today if I stopped overnight half-way. I had to suppress a laugh. We grew up driving from Canada to Georgia without stopping overnight. Last summer we drove to California without stopping overnight!! Road trips are a way of life for us. And frankly, all day in the car, listening to a good book on CD, with my boys strapped in, watching movies is a whole lot more relaxing than a normal day parenting all three at home.
We had three full days there and filled them with new restaurants, lots of my mom's cooking (for that alone I'd drive 10 hours), a new library, the children's museum, frozen yogurt and lots and lots of games of Spot It, and Old Maid (Dawson calls it Homemade. We just call it boring.).
Local was a highlight on this trip. I cannot wait to go back there and order something different. I was disappointed we didn't have time to go to Brother Juniper's again for the breakfast sandwich I've quite possibly thought about every day since last June. But then....deep fried, crab-stuffed avocados. I mean.
We stopped at Gibson's donuts for the boys. (I have a serious sweet tooth but don't really like donuts. Unless it's a warm Krispy Kreme original glazed. Which I would consider trading a child for, depending on the day.)
 I'm not really sure how this happened....all in the name of vacation, I guess:

We drove back home on Monday and swerved off the highway (literally. I got honked at.) when I saw this gorgeous old wooden mill. Nobody was around. It was 60 degrees. We ran and hiked and explored and trespassed and it was glorious.

Before any of you question my judgment over the next picture (I know there are at least two of you who would), I assure you, I tested that collapsing bridge myself before I let them cross. Perfectly safe. (Safe is a relative term, isn't it? We like to push the boundary a bit.)

Of course, my little observant one noticed all that gorgeous green moss and kept stopping to touch it. The vibrant beauty of it jumped out at you since everything else was dead and brown.

 This next picture is for my dad. There isn't a historic sign he hasn't stopped to read.
That little 20 minute pit-stop was one of my favorite moments of the whole trip. Being outside at some beautiful spot, exploring with my boys, is the closest to heaven I ever experience on this earth. (Ok, deep fried avocados come pretty darn close too.) I desperately want to live somewhere with mountains (or hills at least!) with beautiful lakes or rivers. I was talking with a friend about contentment. Sometimes there's a deep stirring inside of you that wants something to change. It's hard to tell sometimes if that's the Holy Spirit calling you to something better or if it's just discontentment that can breed bitterness or jealousy if we're not careful. I wasn't content to live in the suburbs anymore with our three boys and I do believe that was ignited by the Holy Spirit. But I would love it if He opened up the door for us to move a bit further South, rather than just outside the Des Moines city limits (which we're currently trying to do). I keep trying to convince my in-laws to start looking for a job elsewhere. Because we'll be right behind them if they do! It was incredibly depressing to drive from 60 degrees to about 12 degrees in just a handful of hours. 

1 comment:

  1. Lovely! I just love your thoughts and photos.


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