Tuesday, April 26, 2011

From Shelton to Sequim to see my grandma

From Shelton, I am able to travel to Sequim, to see my grandparents without taking a ferry. This may seem like an odd thing to distingish, but with 7 children, the ferry is a bit challenging!

This was also my first opportunity to drive the new bus!

The first 20 miles or so went just fine. Then all of a sudden, we lost power. I had to pull over because I couldn't get it to go beyond about 25 miles/hour, on a 50mph windy highway! I called Chris to see what his thoughts were...he said it just doesn't have much power, let it rest and then I was good to keep going. I tried to explain that this was different...but he thought the same thing. Let it rest, then keep going. I decided to call his Dad to see if he had any thoughts on what was going on. He thought I should try to limp it back home, and then have Chris look at it before going 100 miles away from where Chris was. That was my plan.

I turned around (not an easy thing in this bus, lol!), and it was fine - just like magic, it drove without any issue at all. I decided to turn around again (did I mention that isn't an easy thing to do in this bus?!) and keep going to see my grandma.

We made it there without any other issues!

We had a good visit. My children are a lot of activity for my grandma and her two little dogs, so we try to keep things brief. I also prep my girls, letting them know we would need to stay calm, and move slowly, etc...but the bottom line is: There are SEVEN of them, and even if they all move slowly, it is still a LOT of motion, lol! I was able to vacuum and dust for her. She had a lot of food that was about to expire that she sent us home with - lots of convenience type things that I don't normally buy, that the girls are just THRILLED with having, lol!

She also gave us a couple very nice, HUGE picture books. One is about space and the other about National Parks. The girls have LOVED going through the books and looking at the pictures. Ashley has asked if we could make that our school this week.

My grandpa is currently in a nursing home, working on regaining strength before going back home after a large number of rather unfortunate events that have left him very weak. He was not doing well that morning, so we decided to not even ask to go see him...which makes me sad on one hand, as we do not see them much at all, but we also don't want to overtax him right now.

Then it was back on the road again! We made it to almost EXACTLY the same spot, when the bus started to have the same issue once again! 20 miles from Shelton I lost all power. This time, I was on a different hill, and had a lot of trouble getting over it (I was down to 10 mph with the gas floored at the crest of the hill...I had my 4way flashers on, there was no shoulder, so I had to stick it out until I could pull the bus over. There was a truck behind me that decided it might help to keep getting closer and closer - as if I were going so slowly on purpose...he decided after a couple minutes to go over the double yellow lines, and pass me around the blind corner.)

I pulled over, and let it rest. We sang songs. We had a snack. We started it back up and had power again! But this time, it only lasted until the next hill...we pulled over again and let it rest. We had another snack. We played "I spy." We sang more songs. We talked to the nice people at the Inn (in front of which we were parked), who came out to the bus to make sure we were ok. They let us use their bathroom. We got back into the bus and went on our way...we were able to make it home, but it wasn't the best trip. We mostly had power, and I didn't have to pull over again, but I was a bit concerned at times that we would lose too much speed going over hills.

We were all very glad to make it home safely!


  1. What an adventure to Grandma's house and back...sounds like a good children story...You are amazing Michelle! I'm glad you all got to see Grandma.

  2. You should write a book, or a song about it. Over the hills and through the windy road, to Grandmother's house we go in our v-e-r-y slow bus we go...:0 I am glad you made it safely back and that you were able to visit your grandmother.