Highway Junkies


GAAH. I haven’t written in over a month! Since I have no clue how to schedule posts in advance, I hem and haw over the topic, the writing, the photos. Then, when it gels, I hit publish. But this summer, instead of blogging, I feel like all I’ve done is pack, unpack, wash stuff and repack. 

Just a portion of our summer selection

Oh, right, that is how I spent the summer. I idiotically filled the 8 weeks of summer break with 3 week-long trips. Let’s throw in a few cake/toffee orders and a couple of birthday parties in for good measure. Wait! That’s not enough. Don’t forget swim lessons and a failed attempt to put the girls back in ballet. Hence the radio silence here on the blog.

Let’s recap, shall we?

Local bourbon with a view can’t be beat

I already wrote about Trip 1: Lake Life.

Trip 2: Missouri for July 4. It was EPIC, but very different from the lake. In short, we revisited the small Bible Belt town we called home for three years. We never thought we’d like the place, let alone find friends who would quickly become family. Plus the Little got to see her BFF/future husband. I mean, c’mon. That’s magic.

The Little and her first love

We also reconvened Party Planning Committee/ Whiskey of the Month Club, and it was glorious! We’re talking a serious amount of bourbon! Like enough to warrant its own blog post. Alas, I don’t remember enough!

We have books and everything!

By the way – want a fun hangover cure? Go shooting. No, really. Well, technically, we went plinking since the target was an old house (don’t worry, we were on private property and had permission, took all necessary precautions, etc.).  I learned about gun safety. I learned about tannerite. I learned guns are right-handed – yet another thing designed to screw with us lefties. That and my general spazziness made for an interesting afternoon.

But, I did land a few shots, and after many, MANY attempts, I laid in the dirt in the rain and blew up part of a house with a little can of tannerite – and none too soon, because Uncle Chris was ready to call it a wrap. Then back to the house for more shenanigans, this time with fireworks. And cocktails. Lots of cocktails.

No time to rest – unpack, laundry, repack for…

The Big is a bookworm. The Little? Well, she talks to fly swatters…

Trip 3: Twinnie’s house. This time the girls and I traded the Hyundai for a Boeing 737. Now, if you’ve read Globe Trotting or my Survivor’s Guide, you’ll know I’m no travel novice. But with kids, I tend to pack heavy because you just never know. However, I stepped outside my comfort zone and chucked pretty much everything in the checked bags. I finally embraced the ‘travel light and hope they don’t lose anything’ philosophy.

One of many highway views

Now, this is quite a gamble, given my bad travel karma. But! I was completely calm and relaxed on travel day! No, really. Hell, we were ready to leave 10 minutes earlier than necessary. That hasn’t happened since before I had children! So I think the gamble paid off.

Anyway, we went to Twinnie’s for a week of cousin and pool time. Oh, and a bunch of vodka, since they’re not big bourbon drinkers. That’s ok – I’m an equal opportunist! Unless it’s beer. Nuts to beer.

Late night tasting notes!

The Husband worked a few more days and then drove 800+ miles to join us. Just as the Big mastered swimming, we got back in the car and headed to our old hometown to see the in-laws and drop off the kiddos. The girls got to spend a week with their grandparents, we got to drive home without kids.

I slept in a tent and lived!

You know what that means? 600 miles in the car without listening to Trolls. Or Sing. Or more Trolls. Can you tell how I feel about that movie? Did you know you can get in and out of a rest stop in under 10 minutes when the kids aren’t with you??

Grown up shenanigans sometimes involve puzzles. Love you, Gabe!

So what do most parents do with a week without kids? Some might say sleep in, go out, stay up late. Some might also want to reset the house in a way where Legos don’t rule every room. Great idea, I’m in.

No, instead, I’ve voluntarily agreed to camping. CAMPING, people. Tent. Woods. Outhouse. The things I’ll agree to for my dear Gina. There’s really not much more to say about this other than I brought a LOT of whiskey. Oh and cake. Priorities people.

Yes, I took a dress camping. So did 3 other girls.

Now I’m home and trying to get back in the swing of things. What should we talk about next??

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