And just like that, we’re home again.
The getaway was short, only 24 hours, but I think it was just what we all needed. I don’t know if there was a favorite moment for any of us, but the highlights were as follows:
- Taking a drive to see another part of Virginia. This time the route included: Lynchburg, National Bridge, Buena Vista (pronounced BWAY-nuh vis-tah by Virginians), and Monticello.
- We took the scenic route for sure, because the drive from Lynchburg to Natural Bridge was loaded with twists and turns. The scenery, as well as the drive, reminded our family of our Costa Rica runaway trips. ❤️
- The campsite was AWESOME! Of course, everything seems more awesome when you arrive somewhere and can’t really see what is around you. The most important factors that made this site so awesome was the absence of bugs, the clean bathrooms (the whole purpose behind us staying at an RV site), and the quiet nature of our neighbors. I don’t know that we were good neighbors, because on our last trip to the bathroom for the night, Paul thought it would be funny to come charging at me in the dark. I thought he was a white bear, or something else jumping out at me and my kids, and I froze – not knowing what to do. The kids saw this all happening, and knowing it was their dad, watched for my reaction. I panicked and thought I might have an accident 😉. Thankfully this happened while leaving the clean bathrooms. 😅🙄🤪
- We left pretty late for a runaway trip yesterday, so we were well past dinner time when we arrived at the RV site. But we had a plan of attack. We swapped our dinner plans with Saturday night’s menu and made fresh peach milkshakes with popcorn and baked potatoes. It was sure yummy!!!
- The kids wanted to feel like it was the weekend, and although it was already quite late (I hope we didn’t keep our neighbors up!), we joined in a family movie night. Paul picked our movie, despite preconceived complaints that the movie was going to be awful, and the family LOVED it!!!! If you haven’t seen it (click on the link 👆🏻), I actually recommend this movie.
- After luxuriously long, hot showers, and a short night’s rest (we didn’t get the kids to bed until after midnight), we woke up and got on our journey to see two sites today: Southern Virginia University and Monticello!
- After a little pep talk by Alex Boye, upon arrival at SVU, we felt the campus was actually pretty awesome to see in person! A couple of our kiddos are considering this school. It is located in a beautiful part of Virginia, and it is surrounded in MOUNTAINS! ⛰ Oh how I have missed seeing them. I’ll happily drive to SVU, if it means that I can see the vistas that are there. By the way, what tree is this? (See pic below. 👇🏻 Comment if you know.)
- Next came Monticello. The jury is still out on if I enjoyed it or not. What I can say is that I loved the sneak peek into the past that it offered us. The tour guides shared that after Jefferson died, another family owned the property and kept much of it the way Jefferson had it. They even possessed 2/3rds of his possessions, allowing us to see some of them today. It was awesome to be there.
- We also saw the funniest dog being walked at the gas station. The little chihuahua kept running in circles around it’s owner . . . on a leash. It looked like a mini circus performance. We laughed and laughed, until we cried!
On our way home, we enjoyed chatting together, and singing, and making possible plans to grab some take-out for dinner. I relished the freedom we were feeling and the hope that one day this “waiting room” experience will pass . . . But I also hope to enjoy it to its fullest.
These moments are precious and few, and there will always be opposition to destroy the good that IS happening in our lives each and every day.
Although I was dreading blogging tonight, I’m glad that I have. This getaway trip was wonderful, but it also presented us with some challenges that I am still ponderizing on. This quote might help me put my thoughts and feelings into words you can hopefully respect. . .
“It is our duty to concentrate all our influence to make popular that which is sound and good, and unpopular that which is unsound. ‘Tis right, politically, for a man who has influence to use it. … From henceforth I will maintain all the influence I can get”Joseph Smith, History of the Church, 5:286
So, I’ll do the same and not speak about the moments today that I dreaded, until I feel like I should. Until then, I’m going to celebrate that my family and I got away for a night and saw a part of this world we had not seen before. We ate well, we slept well, we traveled in safety, and we learned (hopeful) mostly truth! Now we are home and need to lay this week to rest and prepare for the best day of the week . . . Sunday.
I hope those of you reading this blog have had a wonderful week. And if you haven’t, I challenge you to look for it, acknowledge it, appreciate it, and then share that it happened. For this is how I feel we can each grow our own gardens of truth.