fall break

Traveling with kids is less fun than traveling with adults, but way more fun than staying home.  
We left town last Wednesday morning prepared to drive all day: coffee, carrots, fruit snacks, books, magnets, movies.  We drove ALL DAY, but we made it.  A few months apart cannot rub off the familiarity of a person, and once we got to Iowa our kids played together, and quarreled, like they'd just spent a week together at the beach.
The little boys built train tracks and had matchbox races while the bigger boys built trundle beds and outdoor showers.  We sliced apples and supervised various play, reheated coffee and hauled rocks, wiped drippy noses and traded shifts, all our activity tied together with a thread of overdue conversation.  We put the kids to bed and it was as if we could be people again, acting like the friends we were ten years ago and the adults we are when we're not parenting.  Stories spilled under a tapestry of bright stars at night and picked up again over fresh air and folgers as the sun rose.
It's always worth the effort, culling a tub of car activities that may only last five happy minutes, packing eight changes of clothes for one weekend at the farm.  The kids may not have gotten enough sleep or enough vegetables, but their bodies were nourished by nature and by friendship.  And they have new stories to tell, about the way pumpkins explode when they're dropped from trestles, about driving the four wheeler and jumping on the trampoline and about their pet walking stick.  Experiences worth recounting in rapturous vignettes.

We returned late last night, equal parts rested and spent, muscles sore from long car rides and heavy lifting.  And from laughing.  Soreness that feels, more than anything, like a grateful hymn.


Poppy John said...

Jenni Baby,

So fun and blessed! Wonderful pictures. Makes me feel I must skip poking fun at Iowa on this post!

L2A...and the Iowa "family" too.

Christy said...

Just beautiful.

rht said...

Love the pictures -- can't wait to hear some stories. Sooo thankful that your families stay connected!