The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 10

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“It’s going to be uncomfortable.”

My husband’s pre-road trip words were more than a warning – they were an imminent truth.

And by Day 10, hand, foot, and mouth disease had led to collective sleepless malaise. We were also running out of clean clothes.

But our daughter gave us the best reason to hold on and not grow weary.

It was her second birthday.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 8

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We aren’t rich enough to be here.

It’s an insecurity that crept in throughout our visit to Aspen, Colorado – arguably one of the most beautiful places in the world. The Land Rovers, lavish jewelry, and perfect complexions are hard to ignore.

But there is something significant that everyone who frequents Aspen has in common. They love recreation and the natural world.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 7

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“Two boys and one girl is my ideal.”

I couldn’t help but eavesdrop. You don’t see two grown men discussing fertility over dinner very often.

But such was the case last night.

Meanwhile, my husband and I were body-blocking our children from leaping to their death from the open second floor window.

Ah, dinner in Snowmass Village, Colorado.

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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 5

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“I think it’s going to rain more!”

We should have listened to our oldest backseat driver. Eerie foreshadowing.

But my husband and I wanted to execute at least one idyllic family picnic during our trek across the country. And what better spot than Rocky Mountain National Park?

Except, of course, we knew the storm was coming.

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The Great American Family Road Trip [2017]: Day 4

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When you get married, you don’t consider all the things that can go wrong – the things that WILL go awry. 

In many ways, Karen Carpenter was right: You’ve only just begun.

And little did I know that – just before our eighth anniversary – my husband would be driving me up a steep mountain road in the pouring rain with two excitable children in the backseat…thousands of miles from home.

Thanks, Expedia.

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The Nouveau Appalachia Parent


When you visit the Virginia mountains with your children, you are likely to encounter a specific type of mother.

She doesn’t vaccinate her children. She’s likely to call them “Moon Pie”. And she will allow them a healthy serving of dirt – as only a snack, of course.

True story.

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