Sunday morning we loaded up the car to begin our drive from Chicago to Boston. We had to leave the back of our Subaru Outback empty for Tucker, so Sophie was surrounded by suitcases, a duffel bag and many smaller bags organized by content (baby food, bibs, spoons, bottles and breast pump in one, for example, toys in another, and hats, mittens and scarves in yet another).
And drove. We ordered our meals by number. “I’ll take a No. 1, please.” We snacked on Caramello bars, Bottle Caps and Kashi cereal bars. I saw a shooting star. I made a wish (and then felt guilty for wishing something for me, and not for Sophie). Andy said it was a meteor from the Leonids meteor shower. He then showed me this picture on his Blackberry:
I think that would be the most beautiful thing one could ever witness in this world.
And I drove.
And vice versa.
Sophie played with her new toy, bought for the trip.
And read her book.
And convinced us to rearrange the luggage so one of us could sit back with her as she inevitably grew tired of sitting.
Tucker perked up at every toll booth, never forgetting the one time (several years ago) a kind toll-booth attendant gave him a treat.
Sunday night we stayed at Contented Acres, a bed-and-breakfast in Erie, Pa.
The next morning, Sophie saw her first real snow …
… and we were treated to a huge breakfast.
And then we drove some more. (No, Sophie didn’t travel this way. Here she’s just sneaking some Canada mints (and no, she didn’t really eat them) while enjoying a break from her car seat.)
I was nervous, really nervous about the trip. But it went incredibly smoothly. And now we’re in Boston, spending time with Andy’s family, preparing for a Thanksgiving in which I have much to be thankful for.
“And that’s the wonderful thing about family travel: it provides you with experiences that will remain locked forever in the scar tissue of your mind.” —Dave Barry