Thursday, July 29, 2010

Day 5 ~ The Worst Day Turns out to be the Best Day

We wake up Saturday with plans of driving to Michigan. We ate breakfast, got ready, packed up and headed out. The interstate we needed was closed. Hmmm, that's weird. Our GPS keeps telling us to get back on the same interstate. We can't. At this point the GPS is no help to us at all.

We are driving in circles doing everything we can to get out of Elmhurst. It's not happening. We either can't get on the interstate where we need to due to road closures or it is grid-locked. Traffic is seriously NOT moving.

We drove in circles, around Elmhurst for two hours and basically went NO WHERE. Paul literally screamed and hit the steering wheel. It was the most frustrating experience. I wanted to give up and just go back to the hotel to let the kids swim and we literally could not get back to it. We could go no where.

We got on one street and spotted a tiny strip mall with a few restaurants. We stopped for lunch. We had to go to two different places since Andrew wouldn't eat Potbellies. Even with that frustration again the food and caffeine helped us all feel better.

Somehow we inched our way around, and through and managed to get on some interstate that took us to Chicago. (Not the way we had planned to go but it was something) Later we found out everything was closed due to flooding. That wonderful storm that provided so much entertainment for us the night before was suddenly the bane of our existence.

This is not the worst of what we saw. We saw water half way up the side of a semi that had tried to go through the water that was under an underpass. That is when I asked for my camera out of the back.

Finally we made it through the Chicago traffic and got to Indiana. 

Then we made it to Michigan. It seemed like it took forever. We left hour room around 11:00 that morning and it was right around 4:00 pm when we got to Michigan. 

With this trip I have now been to 25 states and the kids have been to 11. Paul has been to 39! He didn't add any new ones this time around. 

We stopped in New Buffalo Michigan and went to a beach. Once we got to the lake we got to let our hair down and play. We were able to cool off, be carefree, play in the sand, get out some energy and relax. It was exactly what we all needed. Badly. 

Swimming in Lake Michigan was wonderful. We had waves but no undertow and no salt water. The temperature was just right. Cool enough to be refreshing but not too cold. You could go way out without it getting too deep. It was perfect for all of us. Everyone enjoyed the same thing. Shocker.

Emma made an adorable sand turtle with a rock shell.

Andrew skipped rocks.

Paul and I kissed and made up.

The skies darkened and a lot of people left. After a little while it cleared and you could actually see Chicago. I overheard one man say he can't remember the last time you could see Chicago from here. We felt pretty lucky.

We played and played and played for three hours. 


On the way home we stopped for gas in a little town in Indiana. Once again our GPS sent us to a closed road and we had to drive through a neighborhood that we we not comfortable in...BUT...while we were in there we saw


I was so excited I can't even tell you. I almost jumped out of my skin. I was so so so excited. I've always wanted to see fireflies. 

After that we went to more outlets and Paul finally found some hats to get. (He struck out at the last outlets) I found even more dresses for my new niece Mia. We stayed until they closed. After that we filled up on McDonald's and headed back home. We hit some really intense rain on the way home and I was seriously freaking out that we were not going to be able to get back to our hotel. Thank goodness we make it back without any problems. 


Wingnut said...

Wowwee! What an adventure you've had! Our last camping trip as a family was an awful disaster and it pretty much ruined it for us. The kids were too young, we were too green to pull off the trip we had planned, it was just nuts. I so understood exactly the frustration levels on so many fronts. My boy does that whole "I really don't want this food" thing too. That peanut butter sandwich was nasty though!

Heidi said...

Fireflies are the BEST! And lake Michigan is perfect.

Glad you kissed and made up! :)