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Posts Tagged ‘road trip’

As I write this post hubby and our son are off on a two day trip to watch the Apple Cup (the trophy given to the university football team in the state of Washington – Cougars or Huskies). It will be male bonding at it’s best … football, cheap hotels, road trip, and the over-ingestion of flatulence-causing foods … I am so glad that I am not invited!

This trip is part of a plan that hubby and I adopted many years ago, when our kids were much younger. It all started one day as I was listening to a radio program that discussed the concept of a mother-daughter or father-son time away to discuss the years to come, and to provide opportunity to have ‘the talk’ in a less stressful, more relaxed environment. There were materials available, called Passport2Purity that provided a schedule, suggestions of what to do with your son/daughter, as well as audio and visual materials to guide discussions.

For me, the materials provided a springboard for conversations. Some of the illustrations used have been forever etched into the minds of my daughters and I simply because they were so … corny. That said, if you can use them as a guide their benefit will outweigh some of the uniqueness of their presentation (which provides shared humor, so all is good).

The structure of the program provides time for ‘learning’ but also has a strong focus on having fun together as well.

With our older daughter, I took her to Seattle for shopping.

With our second daughter, it was Disneyland.

With our daughters I was able to open the lines of communication broadly in areas such as money and time (stewardship), substance abuses and sexual experimentation (self respect), relationships (honoring one another) and future planning (using their gifts and passions with purpose), and we were able to have these important conversations before they became real issues in their lives. That premature timing, I feel, is key. Rather than waiting until your child is in a stressful, peer pressure filled situation, they can think about and even plan their decision making before it is an issue.

With both girls the trip home was the icing on the cake, with both saying over and over, “thanks for taking me away, Mom.”

Then, once back home, I got to give them a beautiful box full of letters from important people (mostly females, other than their dad) in their lives. They are the people who have been cheering them on for a year, or all of their lives. They are from women who vary in age from about ten (one is a drawing) to seventy. They are from women who share blood … or not, share faith … or not, share location … or not. These boxes of letters hold words of encouragement, words of hope, words of love to read, and re-read again as the tough stuff of the teen years comes their way. These boxes rarely gather dust, as they are places of refuge, of safely of remembering. These letters are the gifts that keep on giving.

And now it is the turn of father and son. Neither one of them knows what a great weekend they are both in for!

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A road trip was the goal for hubby and I.

Well … not really. The goal was for hubby to officiate the marriage of a wonderful lady, and her knight in shining armor.

This lady has been through quite a life so far. Her marriage being over forty years after her birth, and just over eleven years after her life was almost ended in a tragic accident.

But, enough of THEIR story, let me tell you about the road trip of hubby and I.

First you have to know how very much hubby loves road trips. There are days that we will be driving to a destination near our home when he will say, “it would be so great to just keep going.” He lives with a strong sense of wanderlust when it comes to road trips.

He also has a bit of a need for speed, and that is all I will say on that subject (or my laptop might get taken away 😉 ).

The drive included a ‘pee break’ at one of the very few places to stop (okay, there were a number, but there were few that I would choose to sit my derriere down at). It was … interesting. Okay, wretched might be more the accurate description. It was interesting though, as reading the wall of the bathroom provided for me a biography of someone named Pam, and her yearly loves encapsulated by a heart.

Our driving from the Lower Mainland towards 100 Mile House provided for us sites like the amazing canyon of the Fraser Valley, then desert, then enough conifers to make ‘environmentally responsible’ artificial Christmas trees, seem ridiculous. We did get to see a group of Mountain Goats, but, much to my disappointment there were no bears or moose to see. After a couple of hours of driving with no wildlife to gawk at, my undiagnosed ADD was running rampant.

We stopped at a tourist booth that provided a map of the area, including advertisements of local businesses. This occupied my pea-sized brain for a good … five minutes (I did try to drag my interest out longer, to no avail).

The business that made me giggle, and gave me something to focus on for the remainder of the drive (about one more hour … minus the five minutes I had spent reading those advertisements), was called the Chartreuse Moose Cafe.

I thought it was simply such a funny name for a cafe, that I just had to go there.

Chartreuse is a color where a bit of yellow is added to green, or a bit of green added to yellow. But, Chartreuse is also a French made liqueur, of that same color, so I will stick with the color being the background to the cafe’s name. And a moose, of course is an enormous, wild animal, that you do not want to meet while on foot or while speeding along the highway (unless, of course, you are like me and desire some visual stimulation).

Whatever unexplainable reason for my interest, I could not wait to get there!

We did finally get there, and what a diamond in the rough it was! In a town with more Ski-Doo and boat selling businesses than grocery stores, this place was a real find.

It’s mango smoothie was delightfully refreshing, and it’s menu included a vast assortment of gluten-free eats and treats for those with more tender tummies. They also had amish oatmeal bars that were a meal in themselves, and delicious London Fogs (yes, we returned the next day).

The couple did get married, completed by a roosters crowing, and it was a spectacular day for them, their family and friends (plus they had a very hot pastor officiate 😉 ).

Our drive back home through the canyon was quick and, thankfully, mostly by the light of day. And if we ever get back to 100 Mile House, we will definitely be stopping by the Chartreuse Moose Cafe again.

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