a long trip to Iowa & a birthday girl
Miss Evy Imani turned three yesterday! The day started with some presents and some sweet sister bonding time when Annikah decided to do her sisters hair. So while the day started out like this...
It ended more like this...
We had big plans to arrive in Iowa and have a pink and purple train party for one Evy Imani. But after yesterday's happenings the party will have to wait until today.
Our day started with waking to discover we still had no heat in what was, by that time, our frigid apartment. Our chattering teeth and frozen toes made us decide to take school on the road and leave for Iowa early. Because in a very unlike me move I had actually baked the cookies the night before and already done the laundry (I know right). We rallied and loaded the car quickly but the door was frozen stuck and after attempting to make it say uncle I broke the handle off. Yeah, awesome.
We hit the road and after about an hour on the road our used but new to us car completely dies kabisa. So we wait on the side if the road deciding what our next move is. We call my mom who comes to rescue me and the girls while Jason waits for tow truck. The car gets towed to way overpriced repairman while we get the girls something to eat and by the time we drop my mom (driving another 30 minutes in the opposite direction) we get a call from Jason saying we need to drive to the repair shop and pick him up. But the girls were pumped to see my mom and happy for the Bibi time! We borrowed my mom's car to go pick up Jason but on the way my phone died meaning I had no name or address of exactly where I was going and had to stop and ask kind people with smart phones to help a sister out. Finally a guy at the gas station with yellow pages looked up car repair shops in Geneva while my girls run around like crazy throwing stuff at each other at the gas station. I called repair shops asking if they had a guy there waiting for his wife that came up a with a broke down van until I found the place. I wrote down directions and thanked everyone and we headed back out on our quest to find Papa (yes, we made up a song about it too!). We were reunited with J and after some discussion and prayer decided to continue on in my mom's car (Bibi saves the day) to Iowa. It was at that point a four hour diversion
We drove another 2 hours without incident until we hit some black ice and the sun set making said black ice way more adventurous .Then not 10 mins after stopping for potty break Evy announces "me have to poo poo" so after confirming this is indeed an emergency we exit only to realize roads are slick and dangerous and the nearest gas station is at least 3 miles away. Evy then says "me no poo poo" so we head back on the road. We get to Iowa only to hit bumper to bumper traffic.
Seriously, we went 5 miles in 45 minutes and our borrowed car starts stalling out in the traffic. More awesome-ness. The girls are tired and hungry because we ate all the snacks I had packed waiting for the tow truck. Our only saving grace was that we knew we could get off at Iowa 80 and eat, regroup, and decide if we would stay the night somewhere. The entire time we were were texting with Jason's family and getting updates and later we discovered the traffic we were sitting in was not green, yellow, or even red. It was maroon. I had never heard of maroon but we now know it means 'make you want to slap yo' mama traffic.' We finally make it to the exit and start to get off only to see a back-up and a police officer screaming and directing people to stay on the highway!! We rolled down the window telling him we had small kids who were hungry and needed gas but he yelled and told us to get back on the road. Even more awesome-ness. Annikah starts bawling, then I call Jason's sister and start crying, and then Evy says "hey why that guy so mean" and we all start laughing! This all inspired Anni to cry "this is the worst day of my entire life!" to which we started laughing again because we are pretty sure we know of a day in recent history that was much worse. Evy screams " I want to get out of this car NOW!" but with no options we persevered on.
We kept going in one lane at 35 miles an hour and crept along closer. We prayed and refocused on all the blessings in our trip. We prayed for the "mean police guy" because we decided the only person that was hating life more at that moment was him. We were grateful because we had passed at least 30 cars in the ditch and although we were creeping along and hungry we were fine. We also have amazing family that was sending us hilarious texts, drove to rescue us and loan us a car, and found places for us to stay for free should we need it. Yep, we are blessed and although a four hour journey in the end took close to ten hours we continued on and made it by singing, laughing, more tears at moments, car games, and draining laptop batteries with excessive movie wathcing. I never have been so glad to see the signs and smells the bizarre factory smells of Cedar Rapids. And this morning one little girl got her first glimpse of real snow in the sunlight!
We are here now with family so bring on the Christmas cheer and make it strong!