Saturday, August 17th
Our plan was to hit the road early, early and as Collin and I were busy packing Friday night we were trying to determine where we would be at 8'ish a.m. One hour away? Two? Which bank could we hit on our way north to get some cash?
Then we stayed up until 3:30 a.m. packing and cleaning the house. And my alarm went off at 5:00 a.m. to finish the blueberry pie. Hitting the road by 7:00, even 8:00, was quickly dismissed. I think it was nearly 11:00 a.m. before we had made our stop for gas, went to the bank in town, and were finally, finally! on the road.
The boys were loaded with snacks and we all had sandwich lunches and we made it about 40 minutes before the boys started to get squirrely. I dug into their backpacks for their new Travel Bingo games and that worked for about, oh, 10 minutes, before there were cries of "I can't fiiiiind a windmill!!" and "Mom, can you fix this....again??" We made it about an hour and 15 minutes before we got the first call from the back seat for a bathroom break.
Busha surprised the boys with a bag full of "travel gifts" to "open as needed" during the trip. The boys started asking for them almost immediately after we got in the car but we made them wait until this first stop to open one.
Candy rock/paper/scissor hands! Thanks Bush!
The baby especially loved this gift, not because he was able to eat the candy, but because it made a lot of noise. The baby also says shoes are optional.
As we were pulling away from the first stop someone thought it would be a good idea to give Nolan a chocolate granola bar.
Opps. That someone was me.
It took a couple more hours, a couple more bathroom breaks, and a lot more gas station food, but we finally hit the lake. Despite the fact that we still had a lot of driving left to do, seeing the lake instantly made us happy.
By the time we made it into Michigan we decided it was time for another Busha gift.
Dry erase and sticker books! The boys were very, very happy - Thank you, Busha!
It was shortly after this that I received a text from Em - this place is effing amazing! They had arrived at the house and one look at this picture and I was already smitten.
We were still a few hours out - the boys were hanging in there but, I'll be honest, on an hour and a half of sleep the constant requests for new books and crayons and Mom? Where's my bingo cards again? were exhausting. I thought being co-pilot would be the easy job, but I noticed Collin never asked me to drive, co-piloting with three small children is.....work. But that text from Em, that kept me motivated. I could not wait to get there.
Unfortunately, an over-tired Nolan, who did nap on the drive, but not enough, screamed almost the entire last hour+. I think we were all about to lose it. But just then, just then!, we saw it. The Bridge. The Mackinac Bridge. The five mile long suspension bridge (third largest in the US!) that the boys have been waiting to drive over all summer. And as if on queue, Nolan suddenly settled down.
The house was just three miles from Mackinaw City and just as the sun was going down we pulled in, and almost immediately walked down to the beach. To me, the water was chilly, but the kids didn't care - within seconds they were splashing and digging in the sand. I knew in an instant that this was going to be the perfect place to spend the week.
As the sun tucked herself in for the night we headed inside where Em and Drew had prepared tacos and the most amazing salsa, guacamole, and margaritas.
With the promise of a day at the beach to come, the boys went to bed easily and after a second margarita, we joined them shortly thereafter.