The ramblings of a woman,
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First Stop: Estes Park

May 26, 2014 - 9:47 AM

Travel Log: 7 October 2011

It was a Friday morning when we packed up and headed west.

First stop: Estes Park, Colorado!

In the days prior, I had successfully emptied our refrigerator, emptied the garbage cans inside and outside, and completely cleaned the interior of our home from top to bottom, inside and out. Call me an extremeist, but before leaving town I cleaned my house to the point that if we all died, going through our possessions would be an easy task. We even finally had our will prepared prior to leaving for California because, friends, deep down inside, I never thought we'd return. 

The kids were all locked and loaded in the car with each kid having a bag that included their own stash of: granola bars, fruit bars, beef jerky, crackers, fruit snacks, water bottle, books, journal, pencils, new toys for each, handheld devices, headphones, and some odds and ends. I also had a Target plastic bag within arm's reach for each child, just in case someone got car sick.

We packed one large suitcase for the kids' clothes, one carry-on sized suitcase for Josh and one for me, Oscar (our espresso maker), schoolbooks' box, Josh's road bike, and backpacks packed with clothes for our 5 car travel days (so we wouldn't have to unpack the large bags at our 4 overnights).

We met dear friends at the gas station in IC and wished them well as they headed for the East Coast and we headed to the West Coast. Deep down inside, I never thought we'd see our friends again.

Halfway through Iowa, about 2 hours in, Miriam threw up all over herself and the car in her far backseat. She didn't reach the Target barf bag for the first vomit, but did for the second. (I'm so thankful for leather seats and we didn't have to get the car detailed like that one time in Thunder Bay, :)!)

Nebraska was its normal uneventful, sleepy self and the kids ate way more of their car snacks than they should have.

Driving through Colorado for the first time with the kids was wonderful! The kids were amazed at even the blowing tumbleweed, which was worthy of multiple videos by them. Once we started heading up the mountain the "ohs!" and "ahs" were constant. Then a, "I saw a baby mountain goat on the rocks!" discussion kept their spirits up for that final push. However, the mountain goat wasn't enough to stop our kids' typical last-half-hour-in-the-car-craziness / oh-my-goodness-get-us-out-of-the-car, but we made it to Estes Park.

First day of driving: 12 hours, 804 miles.

Our good friends in EP were kind enough to have dinner, drinks, and a fire waiting for our arrival. It was wonderful to spend our first night of our big adventure chatting with friends, laughing and talking about life and the future - both the known and the unknown. Spending time at friends' home that first night was a great transition for our Three, too.

We went to bed on a warm, sunny fall day but woke up Saturday morning with snow gently falling and a storm rolling in.

storm rolling in

Even with the cloudy skies - hanging out in flip-flops in snow, eating a good filling breakfast out with our friends, stopping to take countless photos of huge elk herds bedded down in open, snowy fields, and trying to capture in video the beauty of the yellow aspen leaves against the snow covered pine trees... we were completely blown away by the first stop of our big adventure.

When we first got onto the road that Friday morning before and were praying for our big adventure ahead, I could not stop crying - mostly fear but a little excitement - I was convinced we were saying goodbye to everything.

But here we were, onto the second leg/day, and praying for the drive ahead. We survived vomit in the car and were about to drive through a massive snowstorm over the Rocky Mountains, and my heart was pouring over with gratefulness and hope. I had the four most important people in my life with me and I knew we were still never / not alone. "The Lord will never leave you, nor forsake you." Though I was shaky and had made mistakes in the funnel I had been in, God never changed - I was finally starting to see that truth again.

I'm also happy to report, there would be no more vomit for the remainder of our trip. Phew!


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About Me and This Blog...

Begin Our Adventures of Fall/Winter 2012 to CA, MN, CO
   Ladies Trip to Napa Valley
   My Parents Rode in a Plane!

Begin Our Adventures of Summer 2012 to MN and CO
   Vacation to the North Shore and Cabin
   Boulder for the Summer
   Life in Boulder

Begin Our Adventures of Winter/Spring 2012 to UT
   The Drive to CO/UT Begins
   Vacation in Moab
   Living in Moab / Denver

Begin Our Adventures of Fall/Winter 2011 to CA
   The Drive to CA Begins
   Living in the SF
   Living in the Suburbs
   Coming Home to IC

Begin Our Adventures of Summer 2010 to Eastern Europe
   Life at Czech English Camp
   Travels in Germany & Austria
   Travels in Czech & Poland


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