What we will miss: 2 – HSK.

Pronounced “Ha-S-Kah” and it’s the hospital where Parker was born.

No, I’m not really going to miss the hospital itself, but rather the ability to take Parker to see it as he gets older.  We’ve taken our bigs to Gaston Memorial a few times to let them see where they were born and we won’t be able to do that for Parker once we cross the pond.

I have very fond memories of this hospital, bringing Parker into the world there with no epidural (I didn’t know I could do that!).  I remember vividly Matt and mom being in the room when he was born, my dad taking care of the bigs, introducing him to his big brothers and calling his Grammy from my iPhone.  (It was the only international call I made with my iPhone.)  I loved my birth stories, all four of them, and there is a sadness at leaving the town where Parker was born.  Here’s Parker’s birth story.

A bit about our trip:

It’s TODAY! It’s TODAY!  Oh my GOODNESS we’ve been waiting for this day for so long!

I have spent months planning for this trip, saved thousands of dollars to make it happen, and taught the boys hundreds of lessons on the various things we’ll experience.  And it’s finally here!

(I’m going to assume from here on out that things are going according to our plans.  If not, I’ll tell you about it later.  For now, I can only tell you what we’re planning to do on each day.)

Today we left our house super early and are driving the 10+ hours to Camp Darby, Livorno, Italy.  We will stay here for four nights, seeing many amazing things while based here.

I’m packing treats to give the boys every two hours (trinkets from Tedi, a German version of Dollar Tree).  Something to look forward to even if just a cheap thing that will break in an hour.

We are going to take lots of food so we don’t have to stop much as we travel, and so we can eat more healthfully than if we were to stop at convenience stores along the way.  I’ve budgeted around $900 for gas.  Much cheaper than flying from the states, for sure.  Much easier than flying from anywhere with six people, including a baby and all his gear (stroller, pack-n-play, back pack carrier, diapers, etc.)

I have purchased extra Adventures in Odyssey (AIO) and put them on their iPods so they will have fun, new things to listen to along our journey.  I can now reveal to you that their  “Christmas” presents were new iPods.  We use these for school but that’s not the real reason we got them.  They use them for the most part for listening to AIO and Jonathan Park (which is part of their science, but they love it as much as AIO).  They have a few apps that are educational and they are able to buy games as they earn money each month.  But for the most part, they’re just fun to have.  We’re Apple people… what can I say?  Anyway, the main reason we got these for them NOW was so that during the many hours we’ll be in the car, they’ll each have their own iPod to listen to.  They will also listen to the Rick Steves’ Audio Guide while we’re at the Colosseum.  They have listened to a few of the audio guides at home while drawing some of Michelangelo’s, Raphael’s, or Leonardo’s works.  I don’t expect them to follow all of the guides while at the sites, but they’ve heard several ahead of time.  The Colosseum guide will be easy to listen to and follow while actually IN the Colosseum.

So as you’re reading this, we’re likely somewhere in our van, altogether, sharing in the fun of travel.  Your prayers for safety are highly appreciated.

About Jennifer

"Yes, they're all mine." The answer to the question I hear most often.
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