Sunday, September 30, 2012

Nashville--day 1

This is how Sarah packed for the trip.  She grabbed the clothes off her floor and stuffed them into a suitcase. There are about 4 pairs of pajamas, lots of underwear, and a flashlight.  I added a swimsuit and left it alone.

Stopped at Green Creek Rest Area somewhere near southern Illinois.  It was a beautiful day, and we were tired of sitting, so we played for awhile. Sarah danced, of course.

Noah found a bug and made a habitat for it out of his empty snack bag.

We stumbled upon a geocache totally by accident!  We've purposely searched for them before and not been able to find them, so this was pretty exciting!  We took a couple beads and left a feather and a card with Bible verse on it, then Mike put it back in its hiding spot.

It was at the base of a very tall tree.

 This is the picture I wanted.  The following two are the outtakes from the effort of getting the picture I wanted....

 Back on the road, we saw this amazing cross near the intersection of I57 and I70.  Looked it up online and discovered that it's the largest cross in the world (198 feet tall)!  It was dedicated and illuminated for the first time just 5 days after September 11, 2001. It turned out to be the first of three unusual crosses I saw on the way.  I knew God was blessing our trip.   

Can this be the same child we used to have a pack a potty for when we travelled?  Now we have to pack electronics.  Lots of them.  Here he is listening to an mp3 player while playing on the ipad.

Sarah reading in the back.  They needed a little separation.

 I checked out a bunch of new videos for them to watch, but they spotted an old favorite in the DVD case and wanted to watch that instead.  I couldn't believe it.  The tweens STILL love the old Baby Genius video "Trip to the San Diego Zoo".
 When we got to Nashville, things went downhill.  The hotel is more like a small city.  We got lost on the grounds on the way to check in and ended up having to exit the whole place, do a u-turn and try again.  Got checked in, drove to the parking lot, listened to an automated voice tell us repeatedly to swipe our room key to get access to the parking lot.  After much swiping, flipping, pushing buttons, reswiping, backing up, pulling into the other lane, more swiping...we finally got parked.  Couldn't find a luggage cart, so hauled our luggage all around this massive place, got lost too many times to count, asked several people for directions.  At one point Sarah dropped the one bag she was carrying and just refused to go on.  Noah added it to the 3 bags he was already carrying.  Finally found our room, which is small and unimpressive compared to the rest of the compound.  Mike and Noah made another trip to the van for the last of the luggage while Sarah got lost looking for the ice machine.   All day, Sarah had been wanting to swim as soon as we got here.  Mike and I went on a recon mission to find the pool (seriously needed a break from the little people by this time).  The outdoor pool pictured above is lovely but closed for the season.  The other pool is literally at least a mile from our room.  By the time we got back to get the kids and walk all the way back to the pool, it would have been closed.  Went to bed.  Overall, a very good day with a not very good ending.  Will pack up and make the trek to the pool tomorrow.

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