A quick introduction for those just joining us…
Sharing our Road Trip, Day by Day
From the day we arrived here and settling down, I’ve dreamed about sharing the daily logs from our road trip (which I shared only on my private Facebook page), photos and videos, as well as some funny adventure stories and practical tips/lessons for anyone planning to travel long distances in a very full car with very busy babies and/or toddlers. I wrote these daily updates as a way to keep our family in the loop and let them know, every night, that we had arrived at our next destination point safe and sound. Little did I know that we would get such a following of friends and relatives who were interested in following our trip! I am so grateful that God gave me the perseverance to keep them up because they are such treasures to our family now, and an online journal we can always look back on.
Note: I have put the updates I wrote last year in italics so you easily differentiate what I wrote last year and what I’m adding today.
I hope you join us for the next 15 days as we relive this forever epic #peitocaliforniaroadtrip! Below is the link in case you missed it.
Day 1 Summerside,PE to Bangor, ME
Day 2: July 6, 2016
Bangor, ME to Rochelle Park, NJ
Hello from Rochelle Park, New Jersey! The hotel we picked turned out to be pretty crummy with internet as slow as dial-up but we’re happy to finally make it here after a 7+ hour drive from Bangor, for hot showers, and a bed to sleep on. The room had a musky stale smell but the a/c and my handy diffuser with some lovely lavender helped solve that and helped all of us relax after the last stressful meltdown hour. It’s another late night for us (babies going to bed close to 11pm!) so I’ll have to try to make this brief and grab a few zzzs before Princess Audrey wakes up for a bottle.
We found Maine has quite a few hidden gems (including some beautiful massive homes) tucked away behind the rows and rows of trees, and charming little towns by the sea that we thought were quintessentially New England. It reminded us of the seaport towns of Nova Scotia such as Lunenburg which we love! We drove through the lovely town of Kennebunkport in hopes to find some fresh seafood for lunch but it was packed with other similar hopefuls, many whom had already claimed the few parking spots available. To add to it, Dominic kept saying “Me go park…park? Me go? Park now? Meeese!” after spotting a cute cafe (Tradewinds Cafe) with an outdoor playground that we passed by about 10 mins outside of town. So we ended up backtracking there for a late lunch and we weren’t disappointed. Dominic had a good play and we had full bellies before we ventured back out to the highway for the remaining 4.5 hour drive, which Brendon did all by himself by the way. What a trooper!
We drove past Cheshire and Thornwood (both locations where Brendon had studied as a seminarian years ago) and Brendon sarcastically asked if I wanted to stop in. Haha. It was like driving past a shadow of memories from our past. Besides, we were trying to make good time to be able to join a dear friend whom I haven’t seen in over 10 years for supper but there was traffic and crying babies, and blowouts that held us back. We did manage to take a short hike down to a trout reserve by the Connecticut rest stop to break up the drive which was nice. Anything that make this drive memorable and special is a plus in our books although it may tack on more time to reach our destination. It is a road trip after all, not a road drive. I believe you must enjoy the journey and seek out the adventures along the way, otherwise a highway is just another highway-a means to an end and nothing more. These little stops help us to enjoy this trip and marvel at what we’re doing: starting a new chapter of our lives by moving across country with 2 kiddos under 3.
Tonight we were so exhausted from the drive as we finally settled into our room at 9pm, that we did a quick picnic supper with what we had in our cooler: a can of tuna + avocado + veggie chips and applesauce for dessert. 🙂 It felt like we were camping!
Tomorrow we have a play date planned with my dear friend and her sweet baby girl who we missed seeing tonight. I am very excited to see them both and for Dominic and Audrey to have a chance for play time, something they have both been wanting of these past two days. Then off to Pittsburg to see more loved ones! We are so blessed to have such beautiful souls to visit sprinkled across our route! Keep those prayers coming for safe travels!
PS. I am without a phone/camera and therefore have no photos to show yet. I will get some off of Brendon’s phone to share, and hopefully by tomorrow evening will have a new phone to capture the rest of the trip! #peitocaliforniaroadtrip #day2_bangortorochellepark
*Posting late as we’ve had some very late nights!
Practical Tips & Funny Stories of the Day
- Diffuser to the rescue!
- You can imagine how miffed we were when we found that our hotel room, which had decent reviews and which cost us a bit more than our regular motel, turned out to be in reality less than 2 stars. I gagged on the stale air as we tumbled into the room, an overtired baby rocking in one arm and bags and suitcases in the other. We were exhausted. We just wanted a clean, safe and decent spot to spend the night. I guess that was too much to ask for. We wrinkled our noses at the smell and swore to make the best of it, threw open windows and blasted the A/C, but as we started out for the rest of our night bags, Dominic’s little voice rang out like a bell “Ewwwww ‘TINKY!” We looked at each other and immediately burst out into full-bellied laughs! Perfect timing, Son! Children are so brutally honest and hilarious! He plugged his nose with his fingers and kept yelling, “”Tinky! ‘Tinky! ‘Tinky!” as he ran around trying to find a central point from which emanated the musty smell. Finally he stopped and pointed at the alarm clock. Apparently that was going to be the scapegoat. We were are very relieved that I brought along a little diffuser because with a few drops of lavender, and the A/C pumping, it was not long until air was finally breathable. There were so many ways this hotel stay disappointed us, but thanks to that moment of comic relief, we were able to move forward and make the most of our stay. We’ve avoided Ramadas to this day, and Dominic still might call a hotel alarm clock ‘tinky, but God bless this child who was able to take an awful situation and turn it into a hilarious story.
- I learned from this early road trip experience that diffusing lavender in the evening seemed to helped us all relax and feel at home, especially since we were on the go all day. Peppermint help us stay awake during the long drives, and rubbing Copaiba on Audrey’s gum when teething became painful helped relieve her while the Advil kicked in.
- Eating Local: Finding hidden treasures like Tradewinds Cafe was a true delight! The owner/chef himself told us that he goes to the fish mart every morning to get fresh fish and once they are gone, they’re gone. The food was fresh, delicious and so satisfying. We love supporting small family businesses.
- Divide and Conquer: I think it was by Day 2 or 3 that we worked out our road trip rhythm. Brendon would do most of the driving, as there were several times a day when Audrey only wanted me. It was also easier for me to crawl to the back seat to tend to kids’ needs. In turn, I let Brendon get a full night’s rest (we don’t ever want t a sleepy driver at the wheel), and I took responsibility for waking up with the babies through the night.