Four Birds Flew

Chronicling our cross country adventures.


Bittersweetly arrived home about twenty-four hours ago. Over forty days traveling and upwards of 2,000 pictures to sift through… this might take awhile.

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We’re sleeping in some random Iowa town tonight, exhausted after several hours in Chicago followed by even more hours on the road. Not counting the airport, today was the first time any of us had been to the Windy City–what an astounding metropolis! I’m a sucker for skylines like that, such a beautiful blend of old and new. We wandered through Millennium Park, gawked at the Joffrey Ballet rehearsal for a 9/11 tribute, I obsessed over the “metallic jelly bean” sculpture, then we ate pizza and gelato while soaking up as much Chicago culture as we could before hitting the road again. Leading up to all of that, driving along Lake Michigan was an almost tropical experience… if I didn’t know any better, I’d think the water was taken straight from the Caribbean!

Select pictures from the beginning of our trip until September 2nd are now up in the photo gallery. There are a ton more where those came from, plus everything from the past week that I’ve yet to transfer from my trusty digital camera. I’m still working on them, but hopefully these will tide you over for now!

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Mother Nature is Photogenic

Pictures, pictures, pictures… click to see ’em! So far “the best of” the first week are up, still working on getting the rest online.

We said our goodbyes to Olivia last night and left her at the new apartment, then made it to Aleah’s for a quick visit. She and her fiancé are in the process of renovating a great little house–after hearing about it the past year and a half, it’s nice to finally see the place! Just in time, too, as Aleah’s off to Kuwait soon, and won’t be back until next year. Catching up face-to-face with friends and family has been the best part of this trip.

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Not much new to report. Taking it easy here in Ohio–catching up on genealogy, getting sucked into CNN (politics! hurricanes! stress!), Jessica’s working on her book, and Olivia’s latched onto the Twilight series. Unfortunately, Niagara Falls was vetoed, but we’ll be heading down to the Dayton area this weekend to see where my mom grew up. Weather is crummy today, but no complaints about the millionth thunderstorm wake-up this morning… it’s an enjoyable running theme everywhere we’ve been. We should be heading back west this coming week, so more adventures are on the way.

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Lake Erie looks like the ocean and rivals Pacific waters in the cold department. Maybe next time we’ll go in more than ankle deep. The gulls there know what’s up when you have a box of crackers, and make obnoxiously demanding noises for them. Also, we like Coke, bees like Coke, we don’t like bees, bees don’t like us. Don’t feed the gulls or swat at the bees, and you’ll have a fine time. We did!

After talking away the afternoon out in the sun, then burgers on the grill for yet another scrumptious dinner, eight of us made it to a late night sing-a-long showing of Mamma Mia!… we had the entire theatre to ourselves. Jagger ditched all seven of us girls for his own row up front, and Jessica gave me the evil eye any time I’d actually sing. With all of our road time, we’ve listened to the soundtrack at least a dozen times, and the words were right there in big, ugly karaoke letters–how could I not sing along?! Mom and Aunt Darlena were singing the most, maybe I should have sat next to them. Cheesy good fun and lots of laughter, as promised!

Yesterday was AWESOME! Cousin Sherri had the best seats in town for the Cleveland Air Show. Seeing the city from Key Tower’s 49th floor was amazing, and watching the Blue Angels from up there was beyond stellar! How many times am I going to use the word “the” in this post? I believe that question puts me at 18 so far.

There are talks of stopping at Niagara Falls this week, but I’m the only one of us birds that thought to bring a passport for border crossing. Hopefully the hype that surfaced today won’t fizzle out quickly–the New York side would be worth the drive, right? Going there is high on my list (I know, me me me), alongside requests for stopping in Chicago and at the salt flats during our drive back to Oregon. Which, by the way, we don’t have a set date for yet.

I keep promising more pictures. They’re coming, but not tonight. We’re finally operating on east coast hours (in a late nighter kind of way), so it feels like ten minutes shy of 4:00am and time to dream.

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Peachy Keen

Like a broken record: it’s beautiful weather on the day we’re leaving. Been in northern Georgia for a couple days, visiting our uncle, aunt, and cousin (mom’s brother, sister-in-law, and nephew). After a night of Bingo and a bear sighting, I finally whittled the rest of our pictures down to the “best”, so a real update recapping everything we’ve done so far is one more drive away. Where to next? NASHVILLE! I get to show the girls the city I fell in love with and will soon be calling home. And with that, we’re off for a windy scenic drive!

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If you ever come to Helen, Georgia on a Wednesday or Friday, no worries, you are covered. They have a BINGO night from April to September.  It is so much fun and Helen is a cute little town.  No one in our group won, unfortunately, but we still had a good time.  On our way back to the house we turned into a parking lot with a dumpster, which happened to have a little black bear on top.  We thought he was a statue, but to our astonishment he moved and jumped into the brush.  He was very cute and fuzzy.

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  8/14 Grand Canyon Sunset

  8/15 Storm Runners

  8/16 Somewhere in Texas



Ta-da! The site finally exists, though painfully sparse. Our backlog of updates and photos will have to wait until we next have internet. Spent the weekend in Dallas with old friend Chelsea and new friend Jenny; leaving shortly for Florida. Tropical Storm / Hurricane Fay? We’ve got our eye on her and would rather avoid that brawl with Mother Nature. Text message updates from my phone are on the right–minuscule observations will have to do for now!

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