First Road Trip to Utah

We’re here and we made it in one piece (sort of…that doesn’t include our sanity)! After Samantha’s helmet appointment and seeing our pediatrician to make sure the girls’ colds/sore throats hadn’t gotten any worse on Monday morning (all clear!), we packed up the car and hit the road for Utah.

Packing with kids was such a nightmare! I made a pretty detailed packing list over the weekend, which helped me make sure I wasn’t forgetting anything and prevented me from over-packing, and had pretty much everything ready to go Sunday. Even then, it still took us a solid three hours to get out the door! The girls needed to eat, then had their diapers changed, then wanted to be held by Jake while they fell asleep. In the mean time, I was packing everything that couldn’t be packed the previous night– cooler with drinks and formula, bottles, toys the girls had been playing with that morning, and Bandit’s food. We FINALLY got on the road around 11:30 a.m. and only had to turn around once five minutes into the trip because Jake forgot his glasses, despite having it checked off on my list…

Lucky Bandit got to sit in the front the whole trip since I was sitting in back with the girls. 

The twins slept until we reached Baker (a.k.a. the “armpit of California”), so we stopped to change their diapers and give them a little stretch. Samantha decided to have a poo-plosion that day of all days, so Jake changed her in the front seat of the car, in 106 degree heat, since we didn’t want to change her in any of the nasty bathrooms. It was so hot, Bandit leaped back into the car once his paws touched the baking asphalt.

While in Baker, we had to pay homage to the infamous Royal Hawaiian Motel. Back in high school, on a road trip back from California, my family and I broke down on the road, had to be towed to Baker, and were forced to stay at the Royal Hawaiian for the night until our car was fixed. Let’s just say it was far from “royal.” I even made a spoof travel video documenting all the highlights of our stay (world’s largest thermometer, cockroaches in the bathroom…yeah). Good times!

After our exciting stop in Baker, the girls said they hated their car seats. I’ve decided that the only thing worse than being stuck with two fussy babies at home, is being stuck with two fussy babies in the car. I was at my wit’s end by the time we reached Vegas, so we stopped at a hotel and let the girls play a little bit. They loved getting their wiggles out and were fascinated at their new surroundings. We ordered room service for dinner, went on a walk around the hotel, bathed the girls, and got them ready for bed. As soon as they were asleep, we raced to pack everything up once again and hit the road. We got out of there around 9 p.m. The rest of the drive was amazingly serene. The girls slept peacefully in their car seats and Jake and I were finally able to enjoy the drive sans fussing or traffic. Around 1:00 a.m., Jake started getting drowsy, so I drove the rest of the way home, arriving in Lindon at 3:30 Utah time. Total driving time: 10.5 hours. We are used to making the drive in 8 to 8.5 hours, so this definitely felt like a loooong trip.

Upon arrival, the girls’ Grandpa had stayed up to welcome us and the twins were so excited, that they woke up and decided to stay up for another hour. Yay! Jake and I were dead tired and not amused. We were finally able to get to sleep at 4:30 a.m., and fortunately had Grandma to help with the girls when they woke up around 7:30 so that we could sleep in a little. Jake left later that morning to catch a plane back to California in time to go on a camping trip to the High Sierras with the scouts. The last I heard from him, he was in the car with another leader driving up and texted me that they wouldn’t have any cell service the whole trip. Boo. It’s definitely been hard not being able to talk or text these past few days…the girls and I are excited for him to fly back here on Sunday! The twins have missed him terribly and have been super fussy right around the time he normally gets home from work, swoops in and scoops them up in his arms. Now that they have to look at me all day, they are not happy campers at night!

As for what’s been going on after recovering from the drive, it’s pretty much what I do on a daily basis at home, except, for some reason, it’s so much more fun here! It’s probably the bigger space to move around, the new surroundings, and of course, all the new toys and things for the girls to look at that make the daily grind a little more exciting. Grandma picked up this awesome mat at Costco that I’ve been hearing a ton of good things about…it’s foam, so it can be wiped down, unlike blankets, which I end up having to wash after every use to get the spit-up and drool out. Plus, it’s huge! I want to buy two more to bring back home with me!

Amelia chills out in the bean bag chair. 

 Samantha stuck out her arm to pet Bandit and Bandit licked her hand affectionately. Awwww!

Samantha enjoys the high chairs and toys Grandma bought.

The only thing that’s really been a lot different in our daily routine is the girls’ schedule. I figured they would go to bed an hour later Utah time, since that would be their normal bed time back home, but they have screamed for two hours straight the past two days as we’ve approached bed time. I’m not talking a little bit of fussing or whining…I’m talking full-on making their throats hoarse kind of screaming. Grandma and I have really been having fun with that. I can’t figure it out! Today, my sister, Sarah, stayed home to help me with the girls and we started their bed time bath routine at 6 p.m. (5 p.m. California time). The girls cried for a few minutes, but fell fast asleep after that around 6:30…two hours earlier than their bed time in CA time! It’s still perplexing to me, but whatever works!

The twins have been incredibly spoiled by everyone here…they’ve been held during all of their naps and I have a feeling they are NOT going to like going back home and being put in their crib! The girls have also been very entertained by Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt Sarah, Uncle Mike, Uncle Mike’s girlfriend, Shannon, visits from the neighbors, Bandit and Bandit’s dog cousin, Roger. Samantha and Amelia are definitely soaking up the adoration!

Grandma reading with Amelia. 

This toy that Grandma bought is quite the hit. Samantha and Amelia just love it!
Sorry for the bad quality!

As I sit here posting this, the girls are fast asleep and I’m enjoying a good old fashioned Utah summer thunder and lightning storm. I forget how beautiful Utah summers are and am excited for the girls to experience everything I did growing up here!

Lots of love,


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  1. Yay, you made it! Have fun with your family, but please make sure you come back. Maliyah misses her friends.