As much as I hate to be leaving my daughter and her boys, I’m very excited to be getting home and back to my normal life. And Tom. We’ve been separated two whole weeks!

I’ve been visiting my daughter Kendall in California and babysitting the 5 month old while the rest of his family went to Hawaii for a week.

It was exhausting! I don’t know how mothers do it and apparently, I have a mental block on how I made it through with my own baby and a toddler at the same time. It was SO worth it though, and I had many precious moments with both grandsons. And great times visiting with my daughter. She and Josh even took me out to dinner when they got back to thank me for taking care of their dogs as well.

When I left from the Phoenix airport, Tom was camped with the leftover New Year’s group at Quartzsite. He managed to get the RV and the e-bikes moved to the Annual Xscapers Bash in Lake Havasu – without the aide of the Jeep and the bike rack.

The Jeep spent our time apart in the repair shop in Havasu.

Turns out all of the bolts had fallen out of the front differential. The last one apparently coming out on our bumpy ride out to the Desert Bar in Parker. I knew we were doing damage somehow to the engine on the drive back due to the horrible sounds it was making, but we had to get back to a place to be towed from. So we had it towed to a Jeep dealer in Lake Havasu where it was repaired – 5 days before the drive train warranty expired. Who should pay for the cost of the repairs is still being debated, but I’m pretty sure bolts falling out of cars isn’t normal. The Jeep broke before I flew out and luckily I hitched a ride with a fellow camper (THANKS SCOTT!)  who’s girlfriend was departing from Phoenix at the same time I was. I love how lucky I always am! (THANKS SERENDIPITY!)

Tom managed to be without the Jeep due to the kindness of friends giving him rides to the post office – the e-bike came in handy too. And there was no shortage of people feeding him, including this surprise left on his doorstep:

He had volunteered to help with parking, so he arrived a day early while things were getting set up.

It was both a blessing and a curse that the babysitting gig coincided exactly with the Bash. While I missed out on spending time with friends and making new ones, at least Tom was parked among friends and had plenty going on to keep him occupied while I was away.

Since he spent the majority of the time I was gone at the Xscaper’s Bash, Tom had a very different experience the past two weeks.

While I was getting puked on, he was enjoying group dinners. 

While I was changing poopy diapers, he was listening to great music with the crowd.

While I was experiencing cabin fever and grey rainy days, he was out in the sunshine hiking and biking with people.

While I was getting up at night to feed the baby, he was having fun with friends.

But I got to have priceless moments like this:

While Tom’s probably glad the exhausting event is over, I’m sad that my time with the grandsons is over. I really enjoyed it all. And while there are tears every time I leave my family, at least it won’t be so long this time until I see them all again.

Now  I’ll be returning to another group of friends parked together at Quartzsite. And thankfully the Jeep got done just in time for Tom to be able to drive it the 5 hour round trip to pick me up at the airport.

It will feel really nice to be back to my own home and my own bed, and yes, even short showers in my own bathroom! Sometimes the best part of a great vacation is when it’s over!

Happy Travels,

Peace & Love, Joy