Epic Road Trip (Day 6: August 29, 2016)

Studying the Civil War at Gettysburg
(click here for pictures)

Once everyone went to sleep last night they all slept great.  The movie that we watched last night didn’t even end until after 11:30 and Whitman stayed in his sleeping bag but he tossed and turned.  At one point, he was slowly sneaking towards my bed when Robby came up behind him.  Finally, he went on to sleep and was one of the last ones to wake up this morning. Robby woke up the big kids first and asked if they wanted to go to breakfast with him. Reagan didn’t really stir but once she saw the boys moving almost ready, she jumped up and was ready very quickly, which is saying a lot because she is a tad bit on the slow side, but she wasn’t going to pass up a chance to eat breakfast early.

While they were gone, I quickly had a shower and then helped Campbell and Keaton dressed.  We had almost dressed Whitman when the others returned with his breakfast.  He didn’t mind not going down the hall to eat breakfast and was happy with the selection that Robby had brought back for him.  Reagan decided to go back to breakfast with her sisters and had herself some hot chocolate this time. Since this was our last hotel breakfast for a few days, I ate a cinnamon roll but then couldn’t decide what else I would like to eat.  A bagel and cream cheese is my all time favorite but the cinnamon rolls are a special treat so I just had a few pieces of cereal and then we headed back to the room.

The room was already packed up and soon we were headed out of the hotel.  Our first stop was just a mile away-Trader Joes.  We bought lots and lots of cookie butter which caused for me to have to stop later at a real grocery store and buy some graham crackers to eat that cookie butter with.  We then went just a bit further to the Baltimore Orioles stadium.  It was wide open so we just walked around the place like we knew what we were doing.  The boys enjoyed taking pictures there and it hasn’t been that many years ago that we snapped pictures of one of the boys standing by a number to use as their birthday party invitations.  So this year, we did the same thing-Keaton and Robby were the ones that had numbers that matched their upcoming birthdays and you might just see those pictures appear in an upcoming birthday invitation (well, Robby probably won’t get a party for 42.)

The kids occasionally watch Charm City Cakes so we drove by their shop.  A few kiddos jumped out and I snapped their picture before we went back into the car and headed to Gettysburg.  I had to stop there for a few minutes and try to remember what happened on our drive there but it finally dawned on me-school work.  My people have been tired in mornings and then when I give them school work, their tiredness just turns into crankiness!  Poor Anderson liked to have never finished his math page and bless him, the boy usually always gets everything correct on math and never misses anything. But today, he missed practically every one-they were just careless mistakes so I didn’t make him correct them this time but hopefully he will figure it out before tomorrow’s work.  

Now, Gettysburg-I have only been there twice (possibly 3 times but we couldn’t really remember) but goodness, why does it have to be so hot there?  By the time that we had parked and walked to the visitor’s center, we were completely drenched with sweat.  But the visitor’s center was very nice and soon Robby was in line to buy tickets for the film, Cyclorama and museum.  I wish that I could tell you about the film but Whitman was sound asleep in my lap after just 1 or 2 minutes and I quickly dozed off too (don’t tell Robby.)  Robby had already told the kids that he was going to give them a quiz after the movie and I was sure hoping that he wasn’t going to give me one too.

Next up was view the Cyclorama-largest oil painting in America and more than 150 years old.  It depicted a scene from the battle at Gettysburg and as they read the story, different lights shone on the painting almost making it come to life.  It was pretty cool-the painting was in a big circle and you could walk around while looking at it but I just sat looking at one area since I was holding a sleeping Whitman.  From there we walked through the museum and it was really nice-the kids are learning the Gettysburg Address this year and that is all Reagan was trying to do-memorize more than what she already knows.

After the museum, we spent some time in the gift shop for a bit and then loaded up to drive around the battlefield. We did stop once to seeexactlyy where Lincoln gave him famous speech and drove down a few drives seeing the many monuments and memorials.  The kids were in a really good mood during all of this because Robby had bribed them with McDonald’s sundeas.  

We had our sundaes and then were back in the car on the way to Ronks, Pa.  This was the one thing I really wanted to do on this trip-stay in the caboose motel again and ride the train tomorrow.  Last time we were in the caboose motel, Reagan turned 4 years old and Anderson was 2 and Graham was 1. (What were we thinking traveling with a 4, 2 and 1?-kidding!)

Speaking of so many kids,we went a few miles out of our way to see a house built like a shoe.  Of course I had my picture with the kids. “There was an old woman who lived in a shoe.  She had so many children that she didn't know what to do….”

It didn’t take too long for us to almost make it to the hotel.  We decided that we would have nachos for supper since we just needed some cheese for that meal.  We would have a microwave at the hotel and would be able to heat everything up so we looked and looked for a store.  We ended up having to back track a good bit to find a store.  

When we did drive up to this hotel, the kids were all very excited.  I don’t think that anyone really remembered this place but they all couldn’t wait to climb out of the car.  They almost all fell out of the van trying to get out. We found our train car and everyone shoved in trying to look around.  We have a caboose with a double bed and 4 bunk beds-Robby said that he is glad that he didn’t try to get by with a smaller train car than this.  We are just a wee bit crammed into this caboose but it sure is fun.  

After we unloaded, we heated up nachos with our leftover bbq and then topped all of that off with ice cream and popcorn.  This is the life! Then kids then cycled through the shower and soon they were all in bed.  It was still near 11 when they all went to sleep.  I am not sure what is wrong with us-keeping these kids up so late but there is so much to see and so little time!

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