Sounds awful – driving to North Dakota from Texas – but it wasn’t. Justin, Cailyn, and I headed for the north country on June 28th, and we excitedly got to introduce Cailyn to TONS of new relatives…even some grandparents she had not yet met. Justin and I have made this drive before, but never with a 3 wk. old baby. Honestly, her eating schedule proved to give us some sort of hourly count down as we drove those 21 hours. It felt like the trip there was fairly short (compared to what you ask…uh…maybe the other trips we’ve taken there…haha). Unfortunately, I developed an infection that nearly made me miserable the entire way up there, but God really blessed us in that I got to see a Dr. (not just at a walk-in clinic, either) as soon as we got to Grand Forks, ND. I was given an antibiotic, and things looked up from there.
Our first stop was Grand Forks, ND, home of Justin’s dad and step-mom. They have recently moved there from Fargo, ND due to a promotion his dad received at work. They are still settling in their great new home. While everyone from further north than TX probably has no excitement about the fact that there are houses with basements somewhere in our great country, I most certainly do get excited! Luke and Shannon’s new home is wonderful, and the greatest part was us having an entire level of the house to ourselves (which proved to be handy when Cailyn was screaming at night!). Otherwise, we were all spending time upstairs so that Cailyn could grace her grandparents with her presence. 🙂
For the 4th of July, we headed about an hour further northwest to a small town called Park River, ND. This is the home of both Justin’s dad’s parents as well as his mom’s mother – not to mention tons of aunts, uncles, and cousins on his dad’s side. There is always a 4th of July parade in Park River that beats out any other 4th of July parade I’ve ever seen! Pretty much the entire town is out to watch, and there was almost 2 hours worth of parade to be seen. Another thing is…they throw TONS of CANDY. So, needless to say, the kids were all happy. We took a few shots of this famous parade…here are a few, and you can check the rest out on our photo site.
there were nearly 30 different fire trucks, but not a one woke Cailyn up as she slept peacefully just 10 ft. away from it all…
These are Justin’s Cousins, Hattie and Townes Bakke. Auntie Allie is far left.
As you can see, there are adults sitting in lawn chairs just behind the kids in this picture. The parade actually comes RIGHT BY Grandma Marie’s home where we were staying…so convenient!
After a couple of nights in Park River and spending time with more family, we headed back to Grand Forks for the remainder of our trip. Our time with Luke and Shannon (dad and step-mom) was totally relaxing. Not only did we get to enjoy the luxury of having close to 600 TV channels to choose from (we just have rabbit ears at home) as well as Justin having access to all of the Pepsi soda products he could yearn for (his dad works for Pepsi…and we rarely have soda at our house), but we really enjoyed a few outside lawn games like lawn darts (which I broke…oops) and Bocce Ball, a totally fun game where you throw heavy balls around the yard (for lack of a better and longer description)as well.
Finally, on July 9th we headed back home after a long and relaxing trip. Justin and I had decided to stop somewhere for the night as opposed to driving all the way through as we had done going up there, and Justin came up with the idea to see if our friends Chris and Stacey Field would be free to keep us for the night. Chris and Stacey moved to Lawrence, KS at the end of last year from TX, and we were only a couple of hours away from them on our trek home. So, we called and did get to go a bit out of our way in order to see and catch up with them. Thanks, Chris and Stacey, for the free room and board!
We are finally home and trying to get back into a routine of things. This will be a bit difficult as we are headed to Huntsville by way of College Station on Sunday for the beginning of a youth work camp our youth group is going to join. As exhausted as we are, we are looking forward to our time there. Cailyn still has relatives she has not met, so this trip will just about wrap that up for her. You can check out all of our pictures from the trip on our Flickr site. Enjoy!
Cailyn with Grandpa Thompson
and with Nana
These are great-grandmothers…first Great-grandma Iva and then Great-grandma Marie