But we decided to take a journey. A road trip, actually. To Atlanta, by way of Nashville. A round trip of about 1500 miles. With 2 young children. Yes, we thought we were in sound mind. And, upon our return, we deemed the trip a success. We had to use the term loosely, but overall we had a great trip.
We made sure to pack a few extra doses of Adventurous Spirit and we needed them. We packed quite a lot into our little trip, that by Tuesday morning, I needed a vacation from our vacation, and I woke up blessed with a stomach bug that left me confined to the bed and the toilet for about 4 hours.
But, as Caroline Ingalls would say, all's well that ends well.
Here are the bullet points of our trip:
Fri: We drove for 13 hours, only making it to Nashville. A poop-stepping incident threw me off my game and we all needed an ice cream to get over it.
Sat: We all woke up way too early, not really realizing we were in a different time zone, and the hotel pool did not open for 4 more hours. We had two breakfasts that morning.
Sister-in-law joined us for a dip in the hot tub.
We had a deep-sea lunch at the Aquarium Restaurant.
Rode the carousel.
Fed the sting rays (not for the faint of heart, as they feel like wet velvety rubber).
Then we drove to Atlanta. Here are the girls winding down for bed. Together, a must for sisters, or so I told them.
Sun: We joined brother-in-law and family at their amazing church, Christ Our Hope Catholic Church.
They had a sweet little egg hunt for the kids of the church.
We then went back to brother-in-law's house for Easter dinner, complete with egg-dying,
Mon: We visited the Martin Luther King Jr. Historic Site,
with reflecting pool,
and toured his birth home. I was tickled to see that many of MLK's childhood games can also be found cluttering up our own living room (Lincoln Logs, Tinker Toys, Old Maid).
Interesting fact: our tour guide was blind. I still can't decide if this is super funny, very humbling, or just plain regular.
Because I insisted on eating Chick Fil-A while traveling in the South, we marched ourselves over to the CNN Food Court and ate ourselves some tasty chicken. Then we strolled through Centennial Park.
It was hot.
For dinner I sauteed some snap peas to go with our pizza, in a feeble attempt to "eat healthy."
The cousins shared a tasty Easter tradition of theirs, The Jelly Bean Prayer. (Get regular jelly beans for this, not your gourmet pina colada flavors).
By that point in the visit, my younger daughter was officially attached to her cousin Camron.
Tue: At that point in the visit, I woke up sick. Moaning, cramping, sprinting to the toilet sick. Music Man was a dear and whisked the kids off to the aquarium.
I tried not to ruminate on the fact that the aquarium was my "must-do" on this trip.
By lunchtime, I was back on my feet, and the kids came home smiling. Later we met the cousins at Centennial Park's fountains: these crazy, unpredictable sprayers in the shape of the Olympic rings, made for the 1996 Olympics.
My daughters weren't quite sure what to make of it.
Like I said, we usually stay at home.
Wed: We woke up to discover a layer of yellow, dusty pollen covering our car. The explanation for our stuffy noses, itchy eyes, and growing irritability. A small price to pay for the extravagance of dogwood,
and wisteria quietly making the world a more beautiful place.
We packed up and drove to Knoxville for a quick picnic and a stroll though the zoo. I was hoping to see some giraffe, but my kids tend to gravitate towards petting zoos, so we ended up brushing the goats.
We did manage to see some beaver.
And this pacing black bear.
I couldn't tell if he was mulling over an important decision, or just constipated.
A refreshing swim at the hotel pool closed the day for us.
Thur: We packed up, ate more hotel breakfasts, and high-tailed it home for dinner at our own table. Egg salad sandwiches. Hey, it doesn't have to be gourmet to be home cookin'.
And even though Michigan welcomed us with 41 degree weather, these backyard beauties greeted us warmly.