2,200-Miles Lesson Learned

Last night my family and I returned home from a 6-day, 2200-mile road trip spurred by heading to southeast Kansas to spend Easter with my husband’s aging grandparents.

We looked at flights to better accommodate out-and-back into our schedules, but like many people right now, the price of airfare for a family of four pushed us to jump on the wagon of the good ol’ fashion road trip.

Honestly, I was not looking forward to it. The significant amount of driving, that is. We (let’s be honest, it was 99% my husband) drove no less than 4 hours each day, and as much as 10 in one day. However, I was definitely looking forward to seeing extended family and (finally) having our kids meet their great grandparents.

Being that we’re usually up for a good adventure, we decided to tack checking out a new area (northwest Arkansas) onto the itinerary, swing through OKC to take our kids to Science Museum Oklahoma (which was incredible!), and add a pit stop in Amarillo to have dinner with family friends.

While we came through the door last night utterly exhausted, the value of spending that kind of time together as a family was not lost on me.

We talked uninterrupted by work or the chaos of a calendar, stretched our senses to observe new things, laughed a whole heck of a lot, got a Braum’s fix, checked new states off the list for us and our kids, and most importantly created precious memories together, as a family. We even left with a priceless memento: A picture of 4 generations of Stoll men, my son, my husband, my father-in-law, and my father-in-law’s father.

What’s cool about my job is I meet and work with people all over the country and the world. This week I got to – albeit briefly – explore firsthand a few of the places my friends in the sports events and tourism industry are so passionate about. Every place unique. Every place beautiful in its own way.

So while with my “industry” hat on, I’m usually looking at data, analyzing the details, and picking up trends. This time around, however, I allowed myself to leave my “family” hat on, embrace an impromptu road trip, and simply just enjoy the moments that came from the quality time with my family.

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