Which is why the last 10 days have not been what I was expecting. It started off with the sad news that my aunt passed away quite unexpectedly. After looking over a few different options for getting to the funeral, we finally decided that I really needed to be there somehow and that the best way to get me there was for all of us to drive together to Oklahoma. It was a 9 hrs drive which, with three little people, meant 2 days. I was a bit stressed about it. Okay, a lot stressed. Roadtrip with two small kids and a baby with less than 24 hours notice! Ack! But they did really well. And while the occasion obviously wasn't what I would have chosen, it was a good chance to catch up with other extended family we don't see much.
Craig also realized once we got there that Albuquerque was only another 6 hours away and we have some other family there. Now, a 12 hour detour might not seem very close but it was probably closer than we would be for a long time so I let go of my plans (as did the wonderfully flexible family who changed plans to accommodate us!) and we made it happen. The kids did remarkable well for the 30+ hours we spent driving all over the country and we had four fun filled days visiting museums, hiking and spending time with family. Jonah actually did better in the car than out of it. Whoa, I think he takes after me - he does not do well with a lack of a schedule and lots of changes! Tantrums everywhere!
We just got home last night and I'm exhausted. But it was worth it. Here is a quick rundown of what we did:
- 2 new states for Lucy and Jonah (Oklahoma and New Mexico) and 3 for Norah Jane (Oklahoma, New Mexico and Texas)
- 2 new stamps in our National Parks Passport - Petroglyphs and George Washington Carver sites
- 3 museums, 1 zoo, 1 aquariums and 1 botanical garden
- 3 meals and 1 dessert featuring chilis (3 green, one red).
- 2 successful naps for Jonah. That is a dreadfully low number and probably contributed to the high level of tantrums.
- 1 birthday and 1 birthday re-do (my real birthday fell on a day that was spent traveling and attending a viewing. Not exactly the right time to celebrate. But there was a very tasty surprise for me my first night in Albuquerque which really helped the kids as they were quite upset about my missing it the first time)
- 1 roadrunner spotting. Jonah's favorite puzzle is this Melissa and Doug floor puzzle of the USA. He knew that New Mexico was the "road runner state" and really wanted to see one so we were all very excited when one was seen sun bathing in my uncle's front yard!
I took a ton of pictures which I'll be posting soon after I catch up on laundry and sleep.