One of the great lessons that parenthood has taught Ashley and me over the past year and a half is the importance of slowing down and enjoying the smaller things in life. Whether it is exploring every item on the lower shelves at the store, setting all of our dolls up to share snack time with us, or chasing our escapee down the hall after bath to try to get a diaper on her little tush before she waters the carpet – the everyday things we used to do without thinking have now become less routine and (mostly) more enjoyable. Recently, we have come up with a new way for us to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life – the long way home.
We are very fortunate to live within a short drive of our families. Despite some early woes, Mya has become quite the road trip napper (she gets it from her momma). While we have always tried to take advantage of this and plan our drives during nap time, we felt like we were cutting them short when we would arrive at our destination. The obvious solution…make the drive a little longer.
It started off on a whim, taking a minor detour off of our standard route just to see where it went. It wasn’t much, but in that short stretch there was a sense of peace in getting away from the highway and exploring the roads and countryside that we otherwise had no reason to. Now, it has become a fun challenge to try to see how many unique routes there can be to connect the points we have driven between for years. While my precious cargo gets some well deserved rest (ok, Ashley doesn’t always sleep in the car), I enjoy taking in the unfamiliar landscape. I find myself wondering about the history of the farmhouses we see, looking for fun day trips in the small towns we pass, and soaking up the beauty and freedom of the open space around us. As for the girls, they mostly enjoy it for the stop into the small-town drive-in for Mya’s first ice cream cone. What kinds of things do you do to take a break from the norm?