May 22, 2019

Magnolia Trip

So it's been a hot minute since I've blogged and I realized this is my first post of 2019!! But its a fun one, so I guess its a good one to start out with. 

I'm finally getting around to posing about this amazing opportunity we got to be a part of! (And hello little blog...its been a while). I've had so many questions about our little (big) road trip to Waco last month and I knew I wanted to document it for our own memories in some way--- so here is the recap of our trip and all that we experienced along the way. 

When I was invited back in December to be a part of the Spring at the Silos at Magnolia, Shane and I immediately decided that this was an opportunity for our first family motorhome trip--something we've been dreaming of doing for a couple years now. Shane did all the researching and planning for renting our RV. He ended up finding this one on an RV rental site and negotiated with the renter outside of the website so we could get a better deal (he has a true gift in this area :)) And this trip couldn't have happened or been as smooth as it was if it weren't for all of Shane's endless help in every area imaginable. I still wonder how I got so lucky getting to be his wife.

We headed out of Phoenix on a Sunday afternoon with our goal to make it to Waco by Tuesday evening--we had a 15+hour drive ahead of us! My mom joined us for the trip out there to help with the kids while we were in the RV and Shane's mom and a friend of ours met us out there later in the week (life savers!).

The girls couldn't have been more excited when they saw Shane rolling up in front of our house with our new home for the week. They were running from bed to bed checking out every little detail within the 30ft space! It was some kind of miracle when we started on the road that they wanted to put themselves to bed for a nap-- I think the excitement of sleeping in a new fun bunk bed made taking a nap actually enjoyable for them--thank you Jesus for that one!

Our first night we passed through Hobbs, New Mexico to visit our friends at Perspective Design. We made a pit stop for a special treat and some breathing room before we called it a night in El Paso to sleep at a truck stop. 

The next morning we were up at sunrise and it was my turn to drive (yikes!). I was terrified at the thought of driving around this massive vehicle, but once I got in the driver seat it ended up being pretty easy. I'm just lucky I didn't have to make any big turns! 

Our next stop was to Lubbock, Texas just a few hours outside of Waco where we spent more time visiting with friends there. They took us to their favorite coffee shops and treated us to meals and it was a sweet time getting to be with people we love before hitting the road again.

We made it to Waco late Tuesday night to get settled in before we had to set up shop the next morning at the Silos. Wednesday morning came around and greeted us with some rain and a motorhome that wouldn't start! After a brief moment of stress we found some people to come help us jump start the RV and we made it in time to the silos for check in only to find that they were an hour behind schedule for vendors setting up (thanks to the thunder and lighting). 

I decided to not let this moment get the best of me and just rolled with it--and grabbed coffee to help with the whole situation. The time finally came, we set up shop and we were ready to roll on Wednesday evening for the market to open. 


Have I mentioned yet how amazing my husband was during this trip? The main reason I was able to do this was because of him. The encouragement to do my dream, the endless support of making avenues happen for me to use my talents and passions, the perspective he gives when I don't see things clearly, the selfless love of taking care of our kiddos so mama can package items or respond to emails or take a nap! All the little details that I hate to even think about that he takes care of...making sure the car is running smoothly, planning when and where we need to empty the dump for the RV (bleh!), DRIVING way more than he should've because I can't keep my eyes open on the road for more than an hour and half. And this was only before the market started!

I think I say this every time I do a market, but one of my favorite things about doing these is all the sweet people I get to meet and come face to face with. Being at this one especially made it fun to meet people from all over the country that I've "met" on social media or followed for years. I also had some dear friends from North Carolina come all the way out to see me here and I may have cried the minute I saw them walk up!

 (daddy wrangling in all the kiddos once again...and also it was reeeallly cold there, hence, Shane's get up! haha)

I could probably go on and on for what this week did for my heart. So many emotions and excitements and dreams coming to fruition all wrapped together. I cried a bit from all the emotions and just feeling so so grateful we were given this opportunity. I wrote this on an Instagram postright after our trip about my what I hoped this trip did for my kids, so I think I'll just quote it again here to wrap it up...

"I hope this week instilled in them the hope in knowing that dreams can come true.

I hope it showed them that adventuring is worth it even when it's a lot of work. 

I hope it created memories in them that they'll remember for a lifetime.

Most of all, I hope this week gave them a picture of what it looks like to live out of your calling and passion and trust what your closest people say about you, even when the doubts arise. And when you're surrounded by those people, encouraging you, and reminding you of who you are, you can't help but live out who you were made to be" 

No doubt in my mind that he makes me become more of who I am meant to be!

A few questions I thought I'd answer here too that I got a lot of during and after our trip:

How did you do nap/bedtime?
The motorhome we rented could sleep up to 7, which for us meant a bit more since our kids are tiny right now. So we had them sleep in the bunk beds or on the couches with a blanket and stuffy they brought from home to help them feel more comfortable. 

Surprisingly, on the drive out there nap time seemed to be exciting for the girls. I think since everything was new and adventurous, they wanted to put themselves down for a nap to sleep in the new beds. During the market, one of our moms would go back to the RV to do a rest time with them. On the way home, this was a different story, but once they started getting a little stir crazy. I made them each go in a bed to have a rest time. 

We brought Dash's car seat with us to nap him in that during the drive and during the days of the market. We would stick him in the back bedroom of the RV where we could close the door and block off the light so it was dark. It worked great for him that way! 

We were able to park at a friend's house that lived nearby downtown Waco so we didn't have to pay for a place. This was so great since we could also use their shower and toilets inside. Then for bed we would all sleep out on the driveway in the motorhome. The best part of this was waking up and being able to drive up to the market and park on the street nearby without having to get everyone ready before we left. Having our mom's and a friend there with us were such lifesavers for this too! 

What activities did the kids do?
On the road I brought looooots of coloring books, crayons and books to read. They spent a lot of time sitting at the table coloring  or looking at books together. I also downloaded a couple shows and movies to watch on our iPad for backup. We used this once on the way home and it came in VERY handy :) During the long hours of driving we also took a couple pit stops to get out of the motorhome for a few minute for them or played at a McDonalds play ground for a bit, which also seemed to help us all from not going insane. 

Where did you get your rental?
Shane was all the brains and work behind getting this together. We found out motorhome through  Outdoorsy, but rented outside of the site to save on all the fees. This can be a small risk for both parties, but we had a great experience.

How did dumping work?
This was something Shane also had full control over! haha But on our way home we had to find a place that allowed dumping. We basically had the guy that worked there show us and help dump everything. Thats about all the advice I got on that one! 

Could kids walk around/ carseats?
Yes! Everything we researched ahead of time said that it's perfectly legal to walk around during driving. The girls did great during this, so we didn't bring their car seats since they mostly would sit at the table or be laying down in the beds. Dash was the only car seat we brought for naps and when he wasn't sleeping one of us would be holding him or he'd be sitting next to us on the couch. 

Hope that helped a bit. Feel free to ask any more questions if I didn't answer some of them already.
Thanks so much for following along friends!

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