The Day Politics Went Dark

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Our lives have become filled with negative things – ugly things we do our best to bury deep. Lately, it’s been hard. Take a look around Facebook. Or, even worse, Twitter.

But the eclipse, I would argue, changed it all. For one day, politics wasn’t the focus. Yes, we should all still care what President Trump says and does, but the distraction was – in a word – welcome.

Last week, I was scrambling to order glasses in time. My husband may be the scientist, but the eclipse offered something so rare, so human.

I craved a reason to look up.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Days 11-13

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“Do you want to stay or leave?”

It’s a question with no right answer, but it comes up often in our marriage.

Several weeks ago, my husband and I decided to make our last overnight stop a short stay in Mississippi with his family. But our daughter’s diagnosis of hand, foot, and mouth in Colorado changed everything.

We desperately needed a day outside of the car.

But, if we stayed longer than originally planned, could we drive from Mississippi to Georgia in one day in time to make our kids’ preschool open house at 7 p.m. the next day?

This would be the challenge on the final leg of our journey.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 9

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Chocolate cake for breakfast.

Is there any other way to celebrate your four-year-old’s birthday on the road?

For months, my excitement had been building for this special day. My husband and I even purchased two books a month ago and wrapped them for our little guy.

And as we stood singing “Happy Birthday” off-key at 7 a.m., I couldn’t shake a feeling.

Today will be memorable for all.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 6

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I think the greatest fear on a road trip with small children is that you will somehow scar them for life.

They’ll get abducted.

They’ll see locals smoking weed.

Or Mom and Dad will have a complete meltdown – potentially in public.

The last one, I’ll admit, is the closest to reality.

But I’m happy to report that none of the above have occurred on our cross-country road trip.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 2

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Human beings are funny creatures. Even at 10 p.m. on vacation, I found myself running on a treadmill last night.

In my defense, we spent most of our second day on the road in the car. Again.

But in the 20 minutes I spent exercising alone, I enjoyed the kind of reflection that comes when you don’t hear a child breathing (i.e. whining) for the first time all day.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 1

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“I can’t find it!”

Two doodle pads. Really, I thought this would be our solution to the endless backseat rivalry.

But, within one minute of my son entering the vehicle, a special feature of his brand new toy had been lost: a cat face magnet.

And – to no one’s surprise – two preschoolers now fought over the newest doodle pad.

This was the beginning of our epic first road trip as a family of four.

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