Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Traveling to Washington in the Spring

Having been through 8 busy seasons with Dallas over the years, we have figured out some basic survival methods to help us get through the long tiring hours of being separated.  Dallas's busy season ranges mostly from January to beginning of May and one of the main things that help us survive is keeping busy.  These months are a great time for my friends to come visit or for Daxton and I to travel.  Dallas loves when we are busy or gone during that time period, so he doesn't feel as guilty about not being home with us.  Even though we miss daddy terribly during this time, we've tried to take advantage of quality time together with each other, family, and friends.

Daxton and I's main adventure was traveling home to Washington for a couple weeks to visit family.  It was the first time in two years, since we moved, that we were able to return to my hometown.  Being so far away from family has been the absolute hardest thing for me with this move to Florida.  When I used to visit my hometown, I would contact all my old friends and set up numerous reunions and parties, but living so far away has changed me a bit.  I adore all of my friends and cherish those memories, but this trip I was missing my family to such a high degree that all I wanted to do was be with family.  I hope my friends forgive me for being so secluded this time around!  The entire focus of our trip was to give Daxton as many opportunities to bond with his grandparents and extended family as possible.

It was my first time flying cross country with a toddler on my own and I was so nervous.  I fully realize that I worry to an obnoxious degree, but I had nightmares of him screaming, throwing fits, or crying the entire 6.5 hr flight from Fort Lauderdale to Seattle.  He usually travels so well, but I think I'm still traumatized from our first cross country flight mom and I did with Daxton when we moved out to Florida.  On that flight he was only 17 months old and we had chosen to do a red eye since he slept so well in his car seat.  Boy, was it a LONG flight of rubbing his legs, trying to calm his screaming self down, and thoroughly annoying all the passengers next to us.  Needless to say, I was SO nervous that would be repeated, but without my mom to help.
I was very prepared with all sorts of new games, books, activities, shows on his iPad, and snacks, and even his own pair of headphones.  My prayers were definitely answered, because Daxton did amazing!  Obviously it also helped that he is a couple years older now and it wasn't a red eye flight!  Daxton seriously was an angel.  He watched a few Toy Story movies, colored with his new No Mess markers (LOVE THEM!), read his new tractor books, and ate a lot of snacks.  He wore his new headphones the entire flight, even when he wasn't watching anything.  I think it helped him to cancel out some of the back ground noise, which he's a bit sensitive to. 

We arrived in Seattle around 9:30-10pm (Pacific time), so we were EXHAUSTED by the time my brother picked us up and brought us to their house in Auburn.  The next morning Daxton had so much fun with the kids before sending them off to school.  Natalie showed Daxton her cool Cello skills and even let him use the bow.  He was pretty excited about that!

The highlight of the morning for Daxton, was when Sadie took him for a drive in their Barbie jeep.  She drove him up and down their long driveway and Dax couldn't get enough!
On a sidenote, it felt so strange to actually be cold in the morning!!

Easily one of my favorite pictures from the day!
This is exactly what the trip was all about...
Giving Daxton the opportunity to bond with his cousins.  I love the excitement and love in his face while playing with Sadie!

After the kids left for school, mom had arrived to pick us up and drive us back to Ephrata.  Our hometown is located in the center of Washington, about a 3 hour drive from Seattle.  It was hilarious as we drove through the mountain pass to see Daxton's reaction to things.  First of all, there are no mountains in Florida so Daxton kept talking about how big everything was.  But my favorite was when he noticed the snow.  He said, "Oh mom!  Look!  Elsa's outside!"  Yeah we may visit Disney World too often if he immediately thinks that all snow is made from Princess Elsa...

When we arrived home at Grandma and Grandpa's farm, Daxton could not have been more excited, especially when I showed him how soft the grass was!  Over the next couple weeks this kid basically lived outside.  I loved watching him experience all the things I grew up doing as a child.

Daxton loved finding all the pinecones from our backyard and throwing them into the canal.

Most of all he loved all the one on one attention from his grandparents!  Grandma pulled out all the toys for him to play with and he was in absolute heaven.
It was a pretty great start to our adventures on the farm!

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