Friday, June 13, 2014

On the Road Again.

Apparently our 12 hour road trip to Colorado wasn't quite enough.

Because we decided to pack up a few weeks later and do it all over again. Although this time, our trip was lessened to 7 hours. And we went to St. Louis this time to visit Gabe's sis and her husband. But the road part of the trip looked completely identical to our time on the road just a few weeks earlier: overpacking {because it's so easy to do with a car}, multiple stops for snacks {that I normally wouldn't allow myself to eat}, and a toddler who will.not.sleep. in the car. At all.

Still HAPPY even with a terrible nap

You guys. This not sleeping in the car thing really has me baffled and quite frustrated. Don't all children practically beg to doze off for hours on end on the lull of a long car ride? Not my child. Even  if we leave in the middle of the night. Even if she's rubbing her eyes and exhausted. Even if she's so tired her head is nodding back and forth. The kid won't sleep in the car. {I later learned that it's apparently genetic as Gabe's sister never ever slept on road trips either}.

But the trip home was particularly...miserable. There was no napping and lots and lots of fussing, crying, and screaming. And wanting to change activities every 10 minutes. We went through every flashcard, every animal magnet, every book, every game, and at least 2 and a half times through Despicable Me on the Kindle.

We later found out the day we returned home, poor thing came down with a sinus infection.

Snuggling with Auntie Abi makes it feel better :(

Regardless, our time in St. Louis was absolutely delightful. In fact, it made Gabe and I feel "the itch" for a moment or two. The one we get every so often - the desire to move around again, explore new places, dig into a new city, and uncover local treasures. Those feelings, of course, always go away once we get back into the hustle and bustle routine of life. But it's nice to reminisce of the time we spent in other places and dream of potential in the future.

 The best family pic we got all weekend : /

The thing is, we are quite settled in our hometown. I'd even go as far as to say we love where we live. We are near both of our parents, have incredible friendships, and feel more content than ever with life in general. But sometimes, we really miss culture! All the unique restaurants and boutiques, outdoor concerts and festivals, local coffee shops on every corner, endless options for parks, family-friendly neighborhoods where the houses have charm and don't all look exactly the same, restaurants "up the street" that you can walk to and bring your dog. It's simply a reminder of how much we love these things when we visit other cities. And although we do have many of these things where we live now, they are just a bit harder to find. But, I'm inspired and determined to get back on the Local Challenge bandwagon and love my city! :)

I'm not exactly sure where that tangent came from.

Oh yes. We were talking about the lovely time we had in St. Louis.

Overall, we had a weekend full of play, story-telling, relaxing, walking, and coffee-drinking. Our guest bedroom welcomed us with freshly-cut-from-the-garden flowers. We had wonderful hosts, who made some delicious meals and even more delicious lattes every morning. We spent over three hours one night chatting on the front porch swing. We walked everywhere everyday. We went to one of the best zoos I've ever seen in my life. We frequented the local coffee shops - at least two a day. {Don't worry, I balanced all of this coffee drinking out with decaff and nearly 100 ounces of water drinking}. Lyla found a treasure of a book at a local bookstore. The "fun adults" went to some local breweries while Lyla and I took naps. We made a hefty grocery stop at Trader Joe's. We explored the adorably charming neighborhood where we stayed. We spent our evenings watching movies. And we dined al fresco.

Oh. And Ly made three new friends all with the same name: Meow. She went to bed asking for meows. Woke up asking for meows. Wanted the meows to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner with her. Although, if she had to pick a favorite, it would most definitely be Richard. They became insta-besties.

In other trip news, we developed a love for raw fresh peppers, we decided we must purchase an espresso machine, my belly doubled in size, and we are determined to get a Trader Joes to Wichita.

It was a lovely time, and we're already looking forward to going back for another visit.

Maybe by then, we'll have taught our little stinker how to sleep in the car.


Sarah said...

I have a non-sleeper in the car, too! Movies have become a lifesaver as we drive from Colorado to Kansas several times a year! I don't get it either, I can barely keep my eyes open in the car if I'm not driving!!!

Amanda said...

You can come visit us and our Trader Joe's any time ;)

Courtney [Sweet Turtle Soup] said...

This made me miss Boulder. Our city now is big on people small on charm, no places to walk or local gems. The big thing it has going for it though is close to family and friends.

Mine has thus far been pretty great for road trips, and definitely can fall asleep in the car seat. Wish I could offer some awesome always works advice though =/

Jamie Kulik said...

I wish I could stay awake on road trips. 20 minutes into a ride and I'm out...unless I hype myself up on coffee and energy drinks then I have a chance LOL.

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

It looks like a great trip!