Sunday, January 4, 2009

Christmas Travels and Weather Mishaps

Spending time in the car driving is my least favorite thing to do on the planet. I would rather be doing just about anything else. I consider a 2-hour drive to be too far, so packing up and heading out of town for the weekend or a long trip, like seeing family for the holidays, is a big ordeal. We survived, but it was a long journey that included a lot of added stress due to the weather. But, we did have a good time visiting family, although it seems we were never in one place for too long.

Tuesday 12/23 - We attempted to leave for Iowa, but an ice storm decided to keep us from leaving town. We tried to drive through it and around it, driving three different routes (37, 46, and 231). But, everything came to a grinding halt and each route we tried, we encountered traffic backed up for miles and at a complete standstill. It took us over 2 hours to go 20 miles. So, after hours of fruitless driving, we decided to stay home and try again in the morning. Total driving time: 2.5 hours.

Wednesday 12/24 - We left at 6:30am and found traffic to be light and moving really well. The temps had actually risen overnight, so the ice had all melted. Who-hoo. We were making good time until we hit Peoria, IL. The Northern part of IL had received a ton of snow and the wind was blowing so hard, Todd could barely keep the car on the road. The interstate was drivable, but it was not clear by any means and blowing snow made visibility near zero at some points. We saw tons of cars in the ditch and witnessed some go off the road in front off us. The normal 6 hour drive took several extra hours of white knuckle driving and arguments about front seat drivers (which, by the way, I am not - am just a nervous passenger in bad weather). Total driving time: 8 hours.

Thursday 12/25 - Merry Christmas and more driving. Ugh! I just wanted to rest and play with the nieces and nephews. But, we went to pick up my Grandma and take her to Todd's family Christmas. The roads were less than stellar and it was freezing cold, but we made the trip. Total driving time: 2:5 hours.

Friday 12/26 - Of course, we had more driving to look forward to! I was completely stressed by this point in time. I think a combination of lots of driving, little sleep, no running (Iowa had like a foot of snow, the roads were awful, and the sidewalks buried), lots of bad for me food, and dealing with lots of people. We headed back to my Grandma's to get her and take her to see my family. We were all meeting up at my brother's house in the very Northern Chicago suburbs. To make things worse, we were about 2 hours behind schedule in getting there. Total driving time: 3.5 hours.

Saturday 12/27 - We thought about staying a extra day at my brother's, but decided we needed to get home and gain some sanity back in our lives. We were essentially living out of the car and needed to get back to a routine, including some fresh veggies and a workout. We headed home early afternoon and drove through a driving rain almost the entire time. But, we made it safely and collapsed in bed. Total driving time: 4.5 hours.

Total holiday driving time: 21 hours. Not to disappoint anyone, but we may stay home next year!


Nikki said...

I know exactly where you're coming from! Our normal almost-3 hr drive took us 10 hours! With three kids and a dog in the car too! Luckily, not much more driving except to come home. I'm with you on just staying home!

Christan said...

We had the dogs, too! I can't believe you took Orion. Where did he fit in there were all the kids, your clothes, baby gear, and presents??? :)