Epic Road Trip (Day 10: September 2, 2016)

The laundry took so long last night to do that Robby had to set his alarm to wake himself up to go and get it.  I had stayed awake but by the time that he came back with the laundry, I was too tired to fold it so we just did it first thing this morning.  It was just one day's worth of clothes so it didn’t take long at all.  Today Reagan was the first one awake and the first one ready-she must have been hungry to get moving that quickly early in the morning.  It wasn't really that early though since we had slept in a bit. That was fine though because we needed a little bit of sleep.

The hotel that we were in was under construction so the breakfast was in two rooms.  Robby just took the kids a few at a time to eat.  He came back with applesauce and cereal for Whitman.  He was watching a tv show and kept telling me that it was his favorite ever.  After a bit, we were loading up and driving through town just to see what we could see.

We made it about one block before Robby pulled over on this rope’s course.  It really looked pretty neat and I ran in to check it out.  Of course, Keaton and Whitman couldn’t do it but the next thing I knew, Robby was back inside and buying tickets for Reagan, Anderson, Graham, Campbell and me. I might possibly have said that I would love to do it but I wasn’t really serious and was a bit more nervous than my little Campbell.

We started off being harnessed up and just had to trust those people to tighten my babies harnesses tightly enough.  Then we went through 3 different ropes courses.  Actually, Reagn was the only one who went on the third and we just did the second one again.  She was a bit taller so moving her clips was easier.  I had to help Campbell on one set since she was a bit too short to move her clips. Keaton, Robby and Whitman watched us as we climbed and ziplined around the course.  At one point, Whitman hollered at me, “Momma, are you ok up there?” I was actually much better than I thought that I would be and really enjoyed it.  

It was a lot of fun and after the ropes, we ended up at a climbing wall which the kids did multiple times. I climbed about 3 feet and called my climbing days over but Reagan continued to climb to the top of the wall over and over again.  The boys enjoyed climbing the walls and I think that Anderson could have climbed for the rest of the day. The next event was the slide-we were able to go down this huge slide 3 times.  We sat in tubes and the man pushed us down-scariest thing I have ever done in my life. It was awesome! After you slid down, the you just soared until you crashed on a big air pillow.  It was very, very neat.

So we had a 5 hour drive and by noon, we had only driven 15 minutes.  We headed through the mountains on our way to Maine.  Not really sure why, but nowhere that we go seems to be an easy drive.  It was beautiful and when we started down, we noticed a beautiful picnic area so we turned around to stop and eat.  After eating our picnic, the kids quickly changed into their bathing suits and dove into the icy cold water.

Dove probably isn’t the word-cautiously waded into the swiftly moving water while standing on moss covered slippery rocks.  They had a blast and Reagan even said that this was the best day so far.  The first swimming hole we stopped at was deep and the kids played some.  Whitman and Keaton were life jacketed up but I still couldn’t let him get too far away from me since I didn’t want for him to float down stream.

Then we moved on to another part.  It was more shallow but the current was stronger which allowed the kids to slide down some rocks,  They again had a blast doing it and there was much shouting, screaming and squealing. Whitman could do this as long as he had a brother to grab him at the end and he would have stayed in that water forever.  So would have Keaton but the only thing that made us get out was the chattering teeth-the water was so icy cold.  

We tried to dry everyone the best we could while they sat on the rocks in the partly cloudy sun.  By the time we made it to the car, the were mostly dryish and everyone changed in the car. Now it was 3 and we had drive about 45 minutes of our 5 hour drive!  The kids worked on their school work and finished it and I passed out boxes of candy, turned the movie on and we zoomed on down the hill.

Speaking of zooming down the hill-half of the ride down the mountain was on roads that were under construction.  They had taken the pavement off and it was just dirt roads.  That was for about 10 miles and then we really began to worry about the GPS.  We would be driving down a multilane road and it would make us turnoff and turn this way and turn that way and drive down roads that didn’t even have lines.  The drive was beautiful-mountains, lakes, gorgeous houses, scenery-but still in the middle of nowhere!  After about an hour of driving, we findly made it to an interstate.

Right before the interstate, we stopped at a gas station for a potty stop, gas and ice.  They had a Dunkin Donuts next door so we Robby bought a dozen doughnut holes for the kids to eat. That made everyone happy and we climbed back in the car while Robby refilled the ice chest.  We drove on and drove on past beautiful scenery-at one point we drove over a bridge and saw this town on the other side of the water and it was as pretty as a postcard.

We stopped at a McDonalds to potty and pick up supper.  Whitman was asleep when we stopped so when he woke up, I quickly passed him his burger and fries.  He became livid screaming that he wanted gummies.  This little fit of his went on for a good while and he really only stopped after all of the other kids started imitating him and laughing.  He didn’t find this funny but did stop fussing long enough to throw his fries and burger on the floor.

By this time, everyone else had finished their food and were asking for a drink.  As I filled the 6th cup while flying down a mountain, I told Robby that I felt like a flight attendant.  He shot back that he felt like he was a day care worker.  Both could be pretty accurate at times.  We went on to discuss if we would buy a house somewhere or just travel if we one the lottery.  We decided that we might buy a little house somewhere beautiful like this but a little closer to home but we would also travel.

We made it into our little Bar Harbor Motel tonight.  It looks quaint and they have a playground so half of my crew already thinks this is one of the best hotels ever and the other half were impressed with the big chair that will be a picture spot tomorrow.  

Since my blog is a bit short and I do believe that we are in the hotel tonight earlier than ever (it is 9 and everyone is showered and settled), I will give you a rundown on what happens when we check into a hotel/motel.  Robby goes into check in while I climb around in the car.  I pack up the ipads, camera, computers and clock (yep, we have a huge clock on top of our drawer system-no one can ask us what time it is).  The kids work on picking up their rows and hopefully I have gathered the trash from all 5 trash cans in our van before Robby comes back hopefully with the cart.

He then starts loading up the back of the van while the kids help pass their backpacks up.  As they get out they put on their backpacks and I start unloading the brown bag full of devices, little ice chest and Robby’s cord box. Then we haul everything up to our room (tonight we are in a motel so we didn’t need a cart which was wonderful). Some nights, we walk in together and some nights we walk in separately like we have never seen each other before.

Once in the room, the kids line up their shoes against the wall while we unload the stuff from the cart.  I try to put everything orderly around the room-backpacks, our bins of clothes and find a spot for all of Robby’s stuff.  I don’t deal with his cord box but I do try to get the electronics to his section.  Then we determine if we are going to do laundry and if we are, then we start rushing kids to the shower.  The first few get in and then we start taking clothes from the others-they can put on their pjs for a second before their shower or wrap up in a towel.  Robby then goes to start the load of laundry.

While he is gone, I cycle kids through the showers while helping them pull out their pajamas and helping them find their clothes for tomorrow.  Once is has calmed a bit in the room and usually by now most are out of the shower and have started playing their ipads, I start refilling their water bottles for tomorrow and filling up the lemonade bottle.  Tonight we brought in the boxes of toys, papers and things that sit between the kids and I dumped them out to refill them.  There was also toothbrushes to put toothpaste on and beds to get ready.  Two beds in a hotel mean lots of little people sleeping on the floor (no telling how much longer that will last and then we will just have to leave them at home) so lots of people on the floor mean lots of sheets to lay down and sleeping bags to pull out.  Ideally, by this time the laundry will be nearly ready and after posting the blog from the day, it will be time to fold and put up all of the clean laundry.  Then lights out in the Dennie room.

No wonder I am tired when we lay down at night...it probably helps that every single hotel bed that we have ever slept in has been more comfortable than our bed at home.

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