Eureka - Indiana - Toronto - Montreal - Sumner, ME - Bar Harbor/Acadia - Portland - Adirondacks - Buffalo, NY - Ball Lake, IN - Lake Michigan
For a little over three weeks we had been packed (and unpacked, and packed again) into our tiny little car with a tent, camping stove, five sleeping bags, and enough clothing to get us through for a spell.
This trip had been 9 months in the making. It was designed to be inexpensive, unplugged, and adventurous.
It was NOT a vacation.
Don't get me wrong. Parts of it were relaxing. Large chunks of it were absolutely good for our souls.
It's just that nobody made me a margarita, which in my mind = vacay.
There is actually not a thing about it I would change.
I learned a lot about my kids. I grew a new and more powerful appreciation for my partner. I climbed a big mountain. It was all pretty awesome.
There were difficult moments.
People cried (and not just kids).
People whined (and not just kids).
We accidentally made my 7 year old and ourselves go on a 17 mile bike ride.
It rained unrelentingly into our tent.
Our giant trunk-hogging camping stove never worked.
Anything involving being in the car was totally dreadful.
Accommodations were at times imperfect.
But there were shining perfect moments.
All three kids climbing a real mountain.
Wearing swimsuits all day.
Painting the mountains with my five year old.
Bathing in the most serene lake I've ever laid eyes on.
Sandy beaches on the ocean.
The phrase repeated over and over again, "Best vacation ever!"