Sunday, May 31, 2015

Wigtons Go West Day 2

Wigtons Go West – Day 2

We were 25 years old when we decided to become foster parents.  Kim joined us when she was 17 and we were 26.  She had been through a lot.  She stayed with us from 2003-2006.  We have stayed in touch, but haven’t seen her very often since she moved to Wisconsin.  She said we are her first visitors from her native Ohio.  We went to Golden Corral then to see her home.  We were completely smitten by her three beautiful children (our foster grandchildren!).  They are just precious.  It was really hard to leave.  I wish so much we lived closer and could be of more help to her.  I can’t imagine being a single parent.  Her kids are 63% Native American (Dad is full and Kim is 1/4th), aren’t they gorgeous?! 


We stayed in a trendy Aloft Hotel in Green Bay, that was surprisingly affordable. Today we woke to a flat tire.  We called AAA and they offered to come and put our spare on (which was buried under all our stuff) or to tow us to a repair place (which would be closed on a Sunday).  We said, “No thanks!” and my quadruple A man went out and put the spare on, ran to WalMart and got what he needed to plug the tire and aired it up.  Two hours later, we were on the road.

I spent, what felt like, all morning navigating us out of Green Bay to 90W, which will be our friend for the rest of the trip.  Their county roads are lettered instead of numbered so we were looking for A to ES to A to 22W to O to B to C to V to 21W to Pp (ha!) then finally to 90W.  In case anyone ever needs to get out of there, that’s how you do it.  
 We ate cheese as much as possible while  driving through Wisconsin.

The kids played video games for a bit then listened to audio books of Junie B. Jones.  Two hundred years ago, moving Westward in a covered wagon, it was probably scary not knowing where you’d sleep that night let alone where you’d end up living.  We are surrounded by technology in our Volvo station wagon and with a few clicks were able to determine what city we should be in around dinner time tonight, where we should eat and make reservations at a hotel with a pool.  Before we even left we were able to find a rental home in Keizer, Oregon (a suburb of Salem).  Our good friends in Portland kindly visited it for us to make sure it didn’t smell like cat pee.  Life is so very different.  I will keep thinking about this as we journey down the road.  The pioneers experienced life much more intensely than we do now.  Yes, their lives were at risk daily, but they lived intensely.

On another note, Ben and I were talking earlier of how we never expected to get to go to these places we’re going to this week.  I likened it to wanting to visit the pyramids, something we always wanted to do but never thought we would.  Tomorrow we’ll be finishing our drive to Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota, later in the week, we’ll stop at Yellowstone National Park for a couple of days.  It just doesn’t seem real.

Summary for Global Thinkers pained by excessive detail:
Hours logged on the road thus far: 20 
*Miles: about 1000
*States we were in today: WI, MN, SD (yesterday was OH, IN, IL, WI)
*Running total of states: 6
Sanity Status: Great!  The kids were wonderful again.  Less pressure today, calming down from a whirlwind week.
Mood: Relaxed and in awe (pensive?)
Major Incidents: 0 (flat tire is not major)
What we see this second: windmill farm after windmill farm in Minnesota (and yes, the kids had mini sodas at lunch to celebrate being in MN).

*new categories as of today

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Wigtons Go West Day 1

It's 12:30pm, we just ate at a fun little restaurant called, Flat Top Grill, in South Bend, IN.  We are about a half hour from the Illinois border.

We hit the road at 6:40am after a lovely breakfast at Ben's mom's house in Akron, OH.  Here's a run down of what we've been doing today:

  • Read aloud to Ben out of, "Life Promises Life," by Vincent Nagle (Thanks, Kate!)
  • Kids did Legos, ate pretzels, painted with water colors
  • Listened to music
  • Researched Christian Intentional Living Communities in Salem, OR - there weren't any, we'll have to start our own, I guess!
  • Researched weird laws in Oregon like how you MUST not pump your own gas, or else!  It provides jobs for people, in case you're wondering why.  
  •   Our almost 9 year old navigator read the 1/10th mile markers aloud for over 10 minutes straight as he followed our progress on the AAA Trip Tik.  He is still loving following that, but has laid off the compulsive reading.  
  • We listened to some ok kid's audio books from the library.  If we hear an awesome one, we will let you know.  I love getting free digital downloads from the library for the trip!  I will be "returning" them tonight when we have WiFi at the hotel and will download new ones.  So fun!
  • Saw conservative Mennonites at the rest stop and knew we were still pretty close to our Ohio home...where is home anymore?!

  • After lunch I read aloud to the kids for a bit, we sang our 50 Nifty States songs about 50 times (Daddy cut us off) then two fell asleep!  YAY!!!!!  Ok, who's praying for us? We can tell!  Thank you!  

Wow, blogging on my phone is slow!  We are in Chicago now.  Didn't even see a state sign!  We gained an hour somewhere and are thankful for the slow way we are being introduced to Pacific Time which will be 3 hours earlier.  Driving (as opposed to flying) is also a good chance for us to stop and think about what we've done. :-)
No time for pizza today, Chicago!  We have important business to attend to in Green Bay, WI.  More about that tomorrow.  Have a wonderful Saturday night!

Summary for Global Thinkers pained by excessive detail:
Hours logged on the road thus far: 8
Sanity status: intact
mood: excited and motivated
Major incidents: 0
What we see this second: a shiny silver corvette stuck in traffic with us and the Morton's salt HQ

Friday, May 29, 2015

The Adventure Begins!

It was a bit bigger than we needed, but what a great neighborhood!
 My view while doing dishes

After living in Tuscarawas County, Ohio for the last seventeen years, we are moving. We have loved the small towns of Dover and New Philadelphia and we will miss them, but especially the people in them as well as all our family this side of the country. Ben was offered a job with Garmin International in Salem, Oregon.  We leave today for our first cross country family road trip.  We packed all of our non-breakables then a company came yesterday and packed the rest.  Today they loaded a truck with all our Earthly possessions (and two other loads - it was a HUGE truck!).  I thought we got rid of quite a bit, but have a feeling we will feel differently when we move into our 1000 square foot rental home from our 3000 square foot home we have been in for the past six years.
The kids and I haven't even been to Oregon, let alone most of the states between here and there.  We plan to update this blog throughout the trip with pictures of our adventures across this beautiful country. So, let the adventure begin!

For those new to this blog, it's been around a while and I stopped posting when we had Phoebe.  It was too much to keep up.  With this move, I absolutely MUST take it back up again as we will be so very far from everyone, so we'll start with a bang, blogging every day for about two weeks!

Let me know if you wish to have our new address.
Our phone numbers will remain the same for the first few months.  
Our personal e-mails remain the same as well.
Let's keep in touch!