Roadtrip – Things We Did : Rode in a Horse ‘n Buggy

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So we have been blogging about our Roadtrip, driving 1500 miles with Cole, and the places we stayed.

We did a lot of driving, including into and through New York City . . .

But we did stop and play along the way.  We believe in the philosophy of “Adventure & Retreat,” so we did a good job of balancing those two joys . .  .

When we saw this sign as we headed out through Amish Country in Pennsylvania, we couldn’t pass it up . . .

Buggy after buggy drove by us on the road.  I told Andrew I wished someone would do a documentary on what it was like to grow up Amish.  He told me he thought someone had . . . got to find out the name of that.

I always think of myself as connected to the Amish . . . because I was an extra in a movie in high school (not a very interesting movie; I am in it for under 1 minute movie called The Wizard of Loneliness).  The movie is not about the Amish, but it stars Lukas Haas, who was in a movie about the Amish, called Witness . . . I digress

We went on a buggy ride.  Colton loved it.

And we enjoyed the Amish countryside at a slower pace . . .

What a lovely road trip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Week 7 {Road Trip} : Places We Stayed

We did a LOT of driving on our five day road trip. We drove 1500 miles . . . with our two year old.

Here is what our trek looked like

We stayed in three different places, and we LOVED them all . . .

Our first stop was in Coatesville, Pennsylvania where we stayed in a KOA Kabin.

Cole loved it, and loved having his own room.

Our second stay was in Charlottesville, VA, where we rented an apartment from homeaway.com, this is our second time with homeaway and we highly recommend it. It was so nice to have a kitchen and living space. It was very private and had a great back deck.

Here are Andrew and Cole reading . . . loved staying here together.

Our final stop was in Somerset, New Jersey. We decided that since it was just a stopover (from 11:30 pm – 9:00 am) we would go with a hotel. We also decided that it is now easier for us, as a family to have a suite, so we went with Homewood Suites. It was a great place to stay and because of an issue on their part, we stayed there for under $55! So great!

So fun to stay in three different places. And even more wonderful was that our little guy did great in all three.

Summer Week 7 {Road Trip} : Car Rides with Cole

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Our little family vacation this summer is a road trip down to Charlottesville, Virginia.  After crunching the numbers and thinking about what would work best for us we decided on a ROAD TRIP!

I was nervous about all those hours in the car for our little guy . . .

Cole is infamous for NOT sleeping on a trip when you want him to.  When we flew to California for Christmas he was up at 3:00 am Eastern Time and did not sleep until we were in a car in California at 8:00 pm (that is 11:00 pm Eastern Standard Time, that is 17 hours of not sleeping for an 18 month old).

But thankfully he did sleep . . . almost three hour naps every day he was in the car.

We did prepare for the many hours on the road . . . and it helped.  Our little guy only cried a couple of times (when he was tired and couldn’t sleep) and rarely said “I want to get out!” which he usually says when he is in his car seat.

Here is what we had on hand:

2 Canvas Baskets of books+:

A couple of months ago I put together this canvas basket that we keep in the car by Cole’s car seat.  I love how it contains all the things I love to have in the car for him.  For this trip, we had it along with us, but only used these things at the very end of the trip . . .

We added a whole new canvas basket in front of his seat, so that everything I pulled out was new to him.

Included in the two canvas baskets:

  • Numerous books
    • including 6 library books
    • 4 new little books from my mom
  • 2 Stuffed animals
    • Teddy is always in the car
    • We brought Olivia and a new Olivia book
  • 2 Coloring books
    • we only used one, pulling out a page each time we ate out
  • A new pack of triangular Crayola crayons
    • not necessary, most restaurants gave Cole crayons
    • though they do not roll and that is nice
  • 1 Bulldozer from Uncle Brian
    • actually in that over the seat holder that is always with us I have a number of little toys that Cole can play with any time

A Diaper Bag of surprises:

I also packed this diaper bag with other toys, some that Cole had not seen in a while, some new hand-me-downs and three new things that I bought . . .

Included in Diaper Bag:

  • A hand me down vtech Tote ‘n Go Laptop
    • this was a big hit
    • he is still to little to understand, but he enjoyed it
  • toy truck for outside
    • never used it
  • a ball
  • 3 new things from Target
    • an alphaberry
      • this was a huge hit, he played with it a good deal
      • it plays music that he sang along to
      • he likes finding letters on it
    • a nerf football that was on sale for 89 cents
    • a big bubble stick that he loved
We played with the last two things outside at pitstops and he loved!

In addition we had a cooler with lots of healthy snacks, a diaper changing “station” (a box that is always in the van with diapers, wipes and other possible necessities).  And we did bring our ipads with “shows.”  I thought he would “need” those more, but he did not watch all the new shows and really just liked the first two we showed him, they would have been enough . . . Richard Scary’s Best ABC Video and Mr. Rogers on “Airplanes.”

He was a great traveler, and that made our road trip so much fun!

Summer Week 6 {Art Week} : Local Outdoor Art

Summer in our small town has a new annual tradition . . . emerging outdoor art by local artists.  Art Grows Here formed one year ago and blossomed into a wonderful opportunity to introduce Cole to art.  We decided to scoop Cole up before putting him down to sleep.  And zoomed around to see some art.

Cole loved the experience . . .

 

We love supporting local artists.

Two of our favorites . . .

Jonathan McAdam

Andrew Bosari

Summer Week 6 {Art Week} : Peabody Essex Museum

This has not been my best week for posting . . .

But our theme weeks are still going strong. For Art Week we visited a nearby museum that I have never been to before,

For the first half of the visit, our two year old was in his stroller as we perused the art from all over the world . . .

And then we went to a wonderful interactive exhibit called “The Ripple Effect” and Cole explored and enjoyed . . .

Loving that as we experienced art, Cole was able to interact with it.

And so fun to find another wonderful place to explore in our area.

Summer Week 5 {Boat Week} : Toddler Joy

Salem is a joy to visit . . .

After visiting the Friendship, Cole played on this stage, made to look like a hull of a ship.

A good opportunity for me to practice taking pictures of the little guy.

Pictures capture a moment, but video captures a scene . . .

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We headed back to Salem later in the week and showed the Friendship to Mimi, Skip, and Papa

Summer Week 5 {Boat Week} : Friendship

It is boat week, and there is a big boat that lives around the corner from us, the Friendship.  We have walked by it a number of times, but never have boarded it . . .

Until now . . .

 

Colton and I headed out, just the two of us . . . when I head into new surroundings together I will often contain him until I get the lay of the land, so it was stroller-time for our little guy, while we journeyed to the Visitor Center for tickets.  I patted myself on the back, as there was a lot of waiting while tourists asked questions.  Having him in the stroller was brilliant . . .

Once we boarded the ship we were met by four young park rangers, who gave Colton his own junior shipmate pin . . .

He was not sure how he felt about it . . . me either, a pin on my two year old, but we smiled and held hands and ventured on board together . . .

I am doing a better job these days of letting him walk around on his own.

He is recognizing when it is ok to run, he is doing better and better at exploring appropriately . . .

And I have decided to embrace the next challenge, trying to photograph him in the spaces in between . . . I am not as successful yet, but we are having fun exploring together.

Cole LOVED the Friendship.

Reminder to Me: Adventure with Andrew

So scroll through this blog, and you will quickly find that these days are unapologetically revolving around this little guy:

In the midst of providing him with theme weeks, daily adventures, three meals a day, clothing on his back and all that it takes to orchestrate his days, Andrew and I took one night away.

It was just over 24 hours and it was such sweet, quiet time together that I need to pause and note that adventuring with Andrew is one of the greatest gifts of my life.

We headed up the coast to Maine.  We ventured by ferry to Peaks Island and then toured on foot and by golf cart discovering an island with history and interesting architecture.

Houses on Peaks Island, Portland, Maine

We paused for our greatest dinner ever (as blogged about here), and stayed in a lovely Bed & Breakfast in Kennebunkport.  We explored and rested.  We played backgammon and ate entire meals without anyone throwing anything.

One day away was so filling and so realigning.  We are a family who believes in adventure and retreat.  What a joy when I get to do both with the love of my life.

Thank you to Mimi and Skip for making it all possible.

 

Summer Week 5 {Boat Week} : Ride on Skip’s Boat

One of the highlights of the past year is that my mom moved to the area.  Colton is now within an hours drive of four of his five grandparents – what a lucky little guy!

One of his grandparent’s, my Mom’s husband Skip, is a sailor.  Skip provided a sweet little dinghy for Colton’s second birthday.  This week, boat week, he brought us to see his new boat . . .

What a wonderful time of year to be out on the water . . . and in such a beautiful place.  Everyone had a tremendous time . . .

 

Thank you, Skip for providing a tremendous afternoon for the Sharpteam . . .

especially this little guy . . .

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