Okay, so I didn't say much in my last post about what this road trip was about.
The practical reason for the trip was to deliver our old family vehicle (Honda CRV) to Idaho Falls to get body work done on it by Mike's dad's best friend, at which point it became his parents vehicle; and also to pick up Mike's aunt's van (Pontiac Trans Sport) in Idaho Falls that would become our current vehicle. The logisitics and purpose for this trip surrounding those practical reasons had changed many times in the past few months leading up to it. Originally it was going to be our whole family going, and we were going to spend more time visiting with Mike's extended family on his dad's side. We were also going to go to Yellowstone. Then when it was looking like Mike was going to need to stay for work, the plan was for me to take my time since I would be driving alone, and instead of visiting with Mike's extended family without him I planned on visiting Linae in McCall, Idaho and my sister Calyn in SLC, Utah.
Mike's work had been back and forth about whether he was going to need to stay or if he could go, and the weekend before the trip it was looking like he would be needed to work 13-hour shifts that week. But by then I was feeling horrible everyday with "morning sickness" (all-day), and so I really just wanted to keep the trip as short as possible, but still bearable. So it got shortened up big time - going from being a 7-8 day trip, to 4 days. The hugest saving grace of the whole thing was that my niece Rianne was able to come with me to help out with the kids since she was on her Spring Break. It would have been completely miserable without her, I am SO thankful she could come - plus it was much funner with her along.
Tuesday we drove all day to Boise - it's about 8 1/2 hours of driving, not including stops, and it took us 12 hours. We left at 6:30 a.m. and arrived at 7:30 p.m. (jumped forward an hour into Mountain time). We made stops in Bremerton (breakfast), Auburn (bathroom) - and finally were on our way. I had scheduled breaks for 3 hour intervals at Yakima, WA, and La Grande OR - we spent about an hour at each place. Once we got to Boise we were all so pooped that none of us were hungry for dinner and just crashed. I was thankful that the kids were as tired as I was and we all slept for about 10-11 hours (can't remember exactly). We had 4 hours of driving to look forward to on Wednesday to get from Boise to Idaho Falls, but to break it up after being in the car all day on Tuesday we went to the Boise Zoo first. That is where most of the pictures from the trip were taken:
Here's Rianne with her shadow Colette. They were attached at the hip through the whole trip. Whenever Rianne would attempt to pull her hand away, Colette would pull it in and hold it to her cheek. Which of course Rianne thought was adorable and so continued to hold her hand.
This was a good photo op. The tiger was sitting right against the window, the closest I've personally seen such a big animal at any zoo. Colette was too scared of anything resembling an animal (as you'll see in a second), so I didn't get as many pictures of her as I did of Adrienne.
This is when we discovered that Colette was terrified of not only the animals, but anything that looks like an animal. We were trying to get her to pose on some of these animal statues:
Colette didn't seem to realize what she was sitting on at first, then...(screaming again)
Adrienne the prairie dog...
Something Colette wasn't afraid of...
Adrienne, the girly-girl she is, loved posing as a mermaid in a seashell:
On the carousel...
Our trip to the zoo was cut slightly short (we'd been there a couple hours) when I started having an allergic reaction to something. It's only been in recent years that I've started to have extreme allergic reactions (throat closing, hives, etc.), so I'm never sure what will set me off. So we quickly finished our snacks, made a pit stop in the gift shop and bathroom and were back on the road. After a stop halfway from Boise to Idaho Falls (Twin Falls) and getting a bit lost in Idaho Falls, we arrived at Mike's Aunt Sharen's house at about 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday night. Mike's parents had flown into Boise and rented a vehicle that they drove to Idaho Falls that day, and they beat us by a few hours. We got there for dinner, and after that I moved the things from the CRV into the van. Here is a picture of the new van (dubbed "The Disco Van" by Aunt Sharen's son)
Our stay at Sharen's was very short. In the morning we got cleaned up, ate breakfast, and were on our way back to Boise. I wanted to get there with plenty of time to relax and have fun before our long trip back on Friday. The van is a 1994, but has fairly low miles...as you can see here, I took this picture because of all the 7's.
When I left Idaho Falls I filled up the tank. We drove almost 300 miles and only needed to go 3 more miles to reach our destination in Boise where I was also planning on gassing up, when we ran out of gas (The gauge still showed plenty of gas!). Luckily when I realized what was happening we were directly next to an exit. I coasted down the exit and was able to pull off to the side of the road, but couldn't go any further from there. There was a station in sight, but I didn't want to leave the kids alone, and if I took the kids there would be no one to watch our valuables. So, I called 911 and told them it wasn't an emergency, but explained the situation. They were going to send someone out to help. This was the only major time that not having another adult along was a problem. After waiting for about 10 minutes (I'm sure it was taking longer since it wasn't an emergency), I tried to start up the car and it did...I managed to limp our way into the gas station and called 911 again to let them know. After that little adventure we were on our way to our fun-filled night.
We stayed in a Motel 6 the first night since we only needed beds to sleep in, but the second night we sprung for a little nicer hotel, a Comfort Inn with an indoor pool. We unpacked and immediately went for a swim. Then we cleaned up, ordered pizza (the girls got a kick out of that...we never get pizza delivered at home), and went to a nearby movie theater to see "Meet the Robinsons" (pretty good!). It was a pretty big theater (at least by our standards), so that made the experience more exciting. If we hadn't had our little running out of gas adventure we would have been able to see the movie in Real D - they use 2 projectors and I guess it makes the movie look 3D. Then we went for dessert at Denny's (right next to our hotel), and then to bed!
The drive back was so much better and faster. We were on the road at 7:00 a.m. and arrived home at 5:00 p.m. (gained back that hour going back into Pacific, so that helped). One thing that I did that made all the driving more bearable was to buy lots of new toys, books, videos, that I spaced out through the week. We even had a few things we hadn't used by the time we got back. I borrowed my mom's portable DVD player, which I tried not to use too much through most of the week, but on Friday I let it run as much as was desired by the kids.
The girls decided to get mildly sick the morning of the trip and were through the whole week (sneezing, coughing, snotty noses)...so they were given chewable vitamin C's constantly, which seemed to help. I felt pretty good through the whole trip, with only slight nausea along the way. But when I got home I just fell apart. I felt completely horrible on Friday night - nauseous, weak, body aches, headache, etc. Luckily I had arranged with Bryn to do my paper routes while I was gone, and even though I was back by Saturday, she delivered it then too. Good thing because I was so sick and tired. But by Saturday afternoon I was feeling better and was able to make it to an Easter party our friends had planned.
Mike didn't end up working 13-hour shifts after all and because of some problem at the shipyard things were held up and he was actually getting off early all week!!! So he could have come with us, but oh well! Then by Saturday they did need him and so he had to work that 13-hour shift while we were at the big Easter party! I didn't think to bring a camera, but the Easter party was a lot of fun. The party was planned by our friend Audra who was visiting from Utah, and it was going to be at my friend Amanda's house (Audra's sister), but because of the rain it was moved last minute to a nearby church building. There was a big potluck lunch, and after everyone ate, the adults went to hide eggs all through the church. All the kids got tons of eggs and seemed to have a lot of fun. Unfortunately I was one of the first to leave because Colette was in desperate need of a nap! I was too, and slept for about 2 hours while Colette did. SO, that's the trip, and our Easter so far.
This morning the girls woke up to their baskets filled up with goodies from the Easter Bunny (bubbles, puzzles, stuffed animal, and a chocolate bunny - wanted to go light on the candy!), and now that I'm finishing up here we'll be going to church with the girls in their fancy Easter dresses. Later we'll be going first to my family's for Easter dinner, then to Mike's family for Easter dinner! I'll also be getting pictures from Bryn of the girls and the girls with Bryn's kids - Easter pictures we had taken a few weeks ago. So I will post a picture of the girls in the Easter dresses later tonight!
I hope you all have a great Easter as well!