I'm headed to the midwest as they call it, to Illinois to visit one of my most dearest best friends Crystal and her fam. I'm making the long 12 hour, 915 mile drive through 6 states, all on my own. We met while they were in Hawaii, we both worked at the CDC on post. I had been there about a month before we figured out that we literally lived right behind each other, our fences backed up to each other. From that moment on we were inseparable, always over at each others house. We did everything together dinner, taking walks, shopping, hanging out, exploring the island. She was my go to girl, many holidays and celebrations were shared between our families. Adam (C's hubby) and the hubbs were really close and did a lot together, they were always BSing and cracking jokes over a beer. The were both there the night that the hubbs deployed for the 2nd time. Then 8 days later they PCSed to their new duty station, it was by far one of the hardest weeks ever, I remember it like it was just last week. But some how I managed and pulled through thanks to my FABULOUS SPOUSE. I really don't know were I would be today with out her. Since then so much has changed for Crystal and her fam. They've gotten out of the Army and moved back to their home town. Adam has landed a awesome job a John Deer which is allowing Crystal to be a stay at home mommy to their sweet baby (3 yr old) Chy Bug. They have settled in well and enjoying civilian life again.
It's been a year and nine months since they left Hawaii and we've seen each other so this is a very long over due trip. I love that the school I work at follows the public school schedule, we are closed with public school is closed. As soon as I started on full time back in January I decided for spring break I was going to go to Illinois for the week. We didn't have any other big plans, it was the perfect time because the hubbs would be done with school and working, so I'd just be at home by myself. When I passed the idea off to Crystal of course she was totally for it and just so happens that their older two girls would be on spring break as well so I would finally get to meet them. (they have a different momma)
My plan was to get up bright and early this morning around 7 or 8am and leave but I didn't get home last night from babysitting till after midnight so I slept in a bit. I loaded up the car, cleaned up from the last and took the pups on a walk. As I was loading the car the pups were whining and pacing the floors like crazy. I decided I'd take them on a walk and when I looked outside it had started to rain. I felt bad because I knew it would be another good 10 days before they went on a walk, so I sucked it up and put on the hubbs rain coat and took them for a walk. I enjoy walking them so it was a nice way to start my morning rain and all.
I got on the road just before 10am and was on my way. To save time and avoid stops I stocked up on snacks for the trip. My goal was to only stop for gas and if there was any MAJOR MUST SEE spots. I just wanted to get there and not waste any time. I figured on my way back I'll be able to stop and sight see a bit more if I want.
The drive wasn't that bad at all, I was able to chat with some family and friends catching up for lost time. The drive all the way up to Tennessee I did this past December when I went to visit a friend it was nice but from the Nashville / Knoxville spit I hadn't seen before. It was simply beautiful driving through the mountains and tunnels, I made my way though Tennessee then Kentucky in to Indiana finally making my way across the Illinois border. Its definitely something I want to do with the hubbs sometime when we get a chance and stop at some of the popular sights. I was able to snap a few pictures here and there while driving, don't worry I was extra careful and didn't speed the whole way only half the time lol.
Heading out of South Carolina the rain finally cleared away and the sun was coming out.
Driving along the I-40 through Clyde, North Carolina I absolutely hate this stretch of the highway. Its so wind and scary.
The Tennessee mountains in the side mirror was a beautiful view as a drive through.
More Tennessee mountains, a bit cloudy but thankfully it didn't last long at all.
Getting semi closer to my final destination, I kept Crystal posted with picture texts through out my drive.
Crossing the Indiana border, the bridges here were really pretty.
Enjoying the beautiful sunset as I drive through Indiana shortly before getting to Illinois.
This trip has made many first for me, first time in Kentucky, Indiana & Illinois and I have to say all three states were beautiful. Well at least the areas I drove through were.
I got to Crystals right about 10:30pm which was 2 & 1/2 hours earlier then my GPS said. No traffic, No stops and a little over the speed limit here and there lol. I was one happy girl to finally be in the same place with her again. We spent the next 2-3 hours up chatting and catching up. I was half asleep on the couch when a horrible storm came through bring pea size hail. I started to freak out this could not be happening, I made it here in one piece with nothing happened to the car and then hours after I arrive its going to have hail damage. NO!!!!!!! I jumped up off the couch, some how I was wide awake and told Crystal I just had to take the car up to the gas station to protect it from the hail. Even though it was 5 -10 minutes away and could possibly get more damage by doing that then it siting there I just had to. I knew the hubbs would freak and I would never hear the end of it, even though it wasn't my fault. Everyone reassured me that it WOULD be ok and it wasn't coming down big enough or even hard enough to cause any damage. I crossed my fingers in hope they were right and made my way back inside. With in 10 minutes the hail had stopped and it was just a hard rain. Thank goodness, that was seriously the last thing I needed.
I am so excited to be spending the whole week here with all the girls, we've got lots planned but a lot of down time as well to relax and hang out with the kiddos at home.
Stay tuned for loads of fun filled adventures!!!!!!!