Wednesday, August 31, 2011
As expected our current reality exceeded my expectations! Our friend Tony is letting us stay in the yard of one of his vacant rental properties. We have a nice little yard for the kids to play in, use of the washer and dryer (and the whole house if we wish!) and the best part is that we are on the parade route for the largest 4th of July Parade in the State of Maine!!! Every year we come to participate in the celebration and it’s kind of a pia to fight traffic and find a place to park, so this will be a real treat. We are really looking forward to it. It’s actually a week long celebration with a street party on the 3rd that will be literally across the street from us!
It’s been surreal being in Maine. Usually we get very excited to see an automobile with Maine plates, and now every where we look we see several!
We visited with our favorite children’s resale shop and scored a pair of new sneakers for Christopher for $4 and some nearly new sneakers for Molly for only $2.50. I’ve sure missed this shop!
Of course we hit up our favorite store, Marden’s. I bought a package of diapers for $1.68! I let the kids all pick out new journals. They were a little pricey at $3.99 but they were really nice and I figured that they should have some quality materials to encourage their writing. I read something years ago about how we usually give kids crappy materials to work with and they often get frustrated, so I’ve made an effort to provide them with quality whenever I can, and honestly I notice a huge difference between the cheaper crayons and colored pencils.
Friends are trickling in to visit so I need to get off! More later!
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
I was three years old and really, really liked ice cream. I may have already mentioned my love of ice cream. Anyhow, I was in the bath tub when I heard the familiar jingle of the ice cream man and I lost my fool mind.
There wasn’t time to stop and dry off or even time to get dressed, let alone beg for money. The only thing that mattered in that moment was stopping the ice cream man before he drove to the next street. I jumped out of the bath tub, ran down the stairs, out the door and up the street.
Screaming for ice cream.
Yeah. I really did.
Monday, August 29, 2011
Tonight my mother offered to take everyone out for ice cream to a local dairy that has been providing summer time treats as far back as to when she was a child.
When I was a child, our neighbors were a family with 4 children. In the summer time they often took a trip to the dairy as an after dinner treat. The father was a rather strict military type, and every time they came out he would ask me, “Kerry, have you had your supper yet?” I would have to think quick and judge if they were on their way to the dairy just yet, because for a long time I would answer in the affirmative each and every time, but on one occasion they were on their way out for Happy Meals first, and I answered yes and got left behind!
What I find so fascinating as an adult is that it never occurred to me to answer honestly. I don’t’ remember trying to lie, I just never even gave a thought to what reality was, all of my energy went into figuring out the right answer that would get me ice cream and/or a Happy Meal!
In my defense, I really, really liked ice cream; tomorrow I’ll tell you another story that will put it all in perspective.
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Massachusetts. Twelve hundred miles in two long days. I had many things that I wanted to write about, but I allowed the children to use my laptop while I was driving so the battery was dead when I had a chance to use it. Sigh. I have to laugh at myself here, because in just a few short years of writing on the computer the idea of taking pen to paper doesn’t occur to me.
We stopped in Hershey, PA on our way from Georgia to Massachusetts because it’s becoming tradition to stop there when traveling through PA. The last time there we were able to resist the World’s Largest Peanut Butter Cup, but this time our will was not as strong, and we succumbed to the peanutie chocolate goodness. I do believe it was the best thing I have ever eaten!
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Somewhere in Tennessee. We are stopped for a potty break for the kids and it’s super convenient that McDonalds also has free wifi!
This morning we had a heck of a time getting out of our friend’s driveway. The end of it is so steep that the trailer was dragging the van right out. The breaks were on and the wheels were turned all the way right, and it was still moving! Thankfully we were able to stop traffic and get it positioned properly, but yikes!
Then we stopped for gas. I had asked Katherine to accompany Molly in to the bathroom, and she cam out laughing that the fridge door was open and that there were eggs shattered everywhere, and that they were all over the rug. Since this was just about the worst case scenario AND she was giggling I thought for sure she was trying to joke with us. Even though she said, “I really don’t know why I’m laughing, I’m trying to be serious!”
Sure enough, there were fridge contents everywhere and scrambled eggs all over the brand new carpet. Ugh. I told those salesmen at LazyDays that the carpet was never going to last.
I know that there are far worse problems to have, and I really am grateful that it was only yolk. I’ll be even more grateful for the ice tea that I’m hoping someone brings me from the McDonalds!
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
The power is out. It has been storming out and apparently a transformer blew. The kids are going insane. Complaining about how boring it is without electricity. Focusing on all the things that they can’t do.
When the power went out I was in the middle of cooking dinner, and Rachel has an electric cook top. I fantasized about going out for pizza instead, but since everything was done up to the point of cooking, I figured it was more responsible to head out to my house (the camper) to cook with gas.
The final game in the hockey playoffs for the Stanley Cup are tonight, and Gary has been looking forward to this for months. He is so into these playoffs that he even paid to stay an extra night in the expensive campground just so he’d have cable for one of the games. Tonight is the FINAL game, with the teams tied 3 games to 3.
Since the game start time was 8 minutes ago, I’m sitting here desperately hoping that Christopher will fall asleep shortly so that I can take Gary to a sports bar in the hopes that they have power. If baby sleep does not come soon I’ll have to drag Christopher along.
Monday, August 15, 2011
Things have been going really well at Rachel’s house. We haven’t set a date to leave yet because we know that it’s going to break many hearts to even hear that a departure is scheduled. I swear, even the dog and cat get along. It’s shocking to me to have two families with so many people (18, to be exact!) be so compatible.
We really need to be back in Maine very soon to tend to some business, but it’s incredibly difficult to even think about being there. Once we arrive I think that we will need to be there for several weeks, and I just can’t bear the thought. Not that Maine is so terrible, it really isn’t. It’s just that it’s where we came from. I know what’s there. As much as I love and miss our friends who are still there, I don’t expect to spend much time with them as they are busy with their jobs and families. I have gotten very used to having almost constant socialization. We might experience that in a campground environment, but there really aren’t any campgrounds in the vicinity of where we need to be. I’m not even sure where we’ll be staying once we get there as we no longer have a “home” there.
I know that it will work out and exceed my expectations, I’m just explaining the reasons that I’m having a hard time moving forward.
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Well, the mall that we were looking for, we didn’t find. Instead we stopped for pizza and while there received a text from our friends asking what time they should look for us. We hadn’t been planning on leaving until the next day, but decided it would be more fun to rush back, pack, and arrive that evening.
It has just been incredible since we got here. Never before has there been a family that we mesh with so well. The moms adore each other, the dads get along great, and the kids think that they will certainly die if separated. As Rachel said, “I keep waiting for that ‘thing’ that is going to drive me crazy, and there just isn’t anything!” Gary and I agree completely. There is ALWAYS something to drive you nuts when being/having houseguests, even if it’s just something minor. Not to say that I don’t adore all my friends, but I couldn’t LIVE with any of my friends. With Rachel’s family, we could easily move in and never leave.
Friday, August 12, 2011
The visit with our friends wasn’t nearly as unruly as I expected. For the most part I told the older kids that they could stay out until 11, but they had to be brushed and in bed immediately at that point, and they were.
Last night I gave a little tutorial on cookie baking that turned into a cookie eating party that lasted until one in the morning! As tired as I was, it was a really nice visit; the adults chatted, the teens socialized (and there were cookies!!!), and since our friends were headed out this morning it didn’t feel like such a bad use of time.
They invited us to meet up with them in D.C. and NYC, which sounds so incredibly appealing! We are on a trajectory to land us in Maine within the next few weeks so it seems unlikely, but with our lifestyle things change so fast it’s impossible to know what is around the corner.
We are staying in the middle of Nowhere, SC. The other day we drove across the border into GA for groceries. I remarked that it was the largest grocery store I had ever seen in my life. The cashier asked where I was from, and then told me that she had never heard of Maine. Ever. I explained that it was in the north east. Blank stare. On the border of Canada. Blank stare. Part of New England. Oh yes, she had heard of New England! I remember that a friend had been on a cruise and met several people who thought that Maine was in Canada. Americans who had no idea that Maine was a state in their own country. This is just unbelievable to me.
Anyway, I’ll stop ranting now as I’m trying to get out the door to go visit a mall I hear is within 30 minutes. Gotta get me some culture! Haha
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Today was a travel day. I’m beginning to dislike travel days very much. Not because of all the riding, which does suck in its own way, but because even if I’m well prepared, my expectations are never met. We are always hungry and tired by the end of the day and we seem to arrive much later than we anticipate. If we do arrive on time, we never take into consideration things like how much time it takes to pick out a site.
We looked over a few minutes ago and noticed another full time family on the site behind us. We thought that they were several states away and didn’t expect to see them again until next winter, so that was a nice surprise! As happy as we are to see them, I’m concerned that the energy level is going to hit the roof shortly with excited children refusing sleep lest they miss a minute of socialization time with their friends!
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend the entire day with just my baby and my bestie. We started out at the beach, then went for coffee, then we went back to her place to eat an amazing dinner that her hubby cooked for us, then a nice long walk with the dog. What a wonderful day. I was so grateful that Gary was willing to stay home with five kids so I could go off and enjoy my day. I simply adore the opportunities this lifestyle affords.
Today my bestie and her hubby and two of her kiddos came here to the campsite to visit. We grilled and ate yummy food, the kids rode bikes and did whatever it is that boys do, we played a competitive game of mini golf and just really enjoyed the company. Now we are packing up in anticipation of getting an early start in the morning (insert laughter here!).
My bestie and I have previously gone years without being able to visit in person and now I’ve had several visits in just a short time! What a wonderful life!
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
I’m having trouble accepting that it’s Friday! This week has just flown by with us being so busy. In fact I’m having trouble slowing down; my mind is racing. We are in the sweetest campground for the next four days. There are maybe 15 campers here, including us, and I don’t think many are occupied. I expect that there will be some more coming in today as it’s the start of Memorial Day Weekend and there is a dinner planned for tonight, but even if the place fills to capacity there are only 80 or so spots.
There is no free cable, no free wi-fi. We are “camping”. I hope that I can settle my mind so I can absorb and appreciate this wonderful experience. I need to soak in the peace!