For the Food on Fridays carnival, any post remotely related to food is welcome—though we love to try new dishes, your post doesn’t have to be a recipe. We’re pretty relaxed over here, and stories and photos are as welcome as menus and recipes. When your Food on Fridays contribution is ready, just grab the button to include with your post. It ties us together visually. Then fill in the boxes of this linky tool to join the fun!
Food on Fridays with Ann
Three weeks ago, our family of six loaded up our used RV with provisions and clothes and hiking boots, climbed in and claimed various areas (couch, dinette bench, La-Z-Boy recliner), spread maps across the expansive dashboard, and slowly worked our way through the subdivision and onto the bypass around the city, to merge with traffic on I-70.
We were heading west toward such sites as the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, and Colorado. Our family has never seen any of the places on our itinerary, so this would be a shared adventure. We would feel awe together. We would hike difficult trails together. We would live in this mobile home for two-and-a-half weeks…together.
Now I’m trying to unpack not only the RV, but also the trip itself. Traveling always changes me, but I’m not always sure how until I’ve spent some time reflecting on the trip. So over the next days, maybe weeks, I’ll post about some of the places and experiences. To the reader, these thoughts may feel part travelogue, part journal, and part poetry. I can’t really say, as I’m not sure how this will unfold.
One fun project I undertook was to document the traveling Chia Bars. My mom shops at a South Carolina farmer’s market and sent me some Frommer’s gluten-free chia granola bars to taste-test. I gave them a big thumbs up, so she purchased a giant box full of them for my trip and shipped them to me. Frommer’s asked if I could photograph the bars at various locations out west—kind of a Flat Stanley project you can eat. That sounded like fun, so I always had a chia bar on hand.
But I didn’t just carry them for the photo ops—I tucked them into my backpack for my hiking snack. The bars provided sustenance as I explored the country.
We drove off on Flag Day, and returned home a few days before the Fourth of July—patriotic days book-ending our trip across this great country. As we stopped at these national treasures, I occasionally sang the chorus of “This Land is Your Land.” At one of the national parks, my son listened to the words and exclaimed, “That’s the perfect song, because this land really is yours and mine and ours!” He gestured with arms stretched wide to include the landscape, our family, and all the hikers in front of us and behind.
This land is yours and mine and ours. And not just because we’re American taxpayers contributing to the national parks. Indeed, this land was made for you and me, a gift from the Creator above. We laughed about our chia bar project.
But we couldn’t help but stand in awe of this land of ours.
Photos by Ann Kroeker.
Posts about our trip:
RV Trip West: Heading into the Unknown
RV Trip West: Petrified Forest
RV Trip West: Winslow, Arizona
Photos by Ann Kroeker (Grand Canyon model: one of my daughters). “Pin” these images in a way that links back to this particular page, giving proper credit.
Disclosure: Frommer’s offered to give me a discount on future orders in exchange for this photo project.
Smaller button for various uses
Hazek Moon says
That was a wonderful experience for your family and educational as well as inspirational. Those granola bars sound awesome too.
Thank you for your note, Hazel. The trip did change me, and I hope to understand more and more as I think and write about it.
Diana Trautwein says
Oh, Annie! I’m so glad you got to do this exploring!! And that picture of the Grand Canyon — spectacular. Thank you. I look forward to more reflections. (And I truly don’t get why THC doesn’t post links to travel posts — I love them. But then, they’re not work-related, I guess. And there are so many thousands to sift through!!)
Thank you for sharing this fun, Diana–you are such a world-traveler, this trip must seem like nothing to you…yet it was such a huge undertaking for us. Thank you for sharing in our joy.
I don’t know that we’ve ever talked about linking to Travel Posts at THC. What would be the link to faith in the workplace? Maybe in terms of the rest and perspective travel provides?
Definitely, Ann. THC has linked to articles on rest and vacation from the regular work routine definitely qualifies as rest. I’ll be doing a post about our Carmel get away from the standpoint of rest and recollection. How that affects our senses and rest.
Matt loved your blog and photos!
Terrific! I just found another granola bar shot from Bryce Canyon.
So happy you got to make that trip! Enjoyed hearing about you singing at the national sites and your children’s reactions. My kids at that age or at any age would have groaned, “Mom, you’re embarrassing us! Stop!”
Your picture of the Grand Canyon is beautiful. Wish you had stopped in for a visit or that we could have come up and said, Hi. We live about 4 hours south of there but it sure would have been fun to meet you in person!
We will be heading to the Mogollon Rim in Az to camp. Up in the high country, northeast of Phoenix and 30 degrees cooler. Just us and some couples from church. That will be strange for me. I have not camped without kids 🙁 And I have not camped in 11 years. Wish me luck.
Well, to be honest, my older kids (teen girls) were likely embarrassed. But my son wasn’t.
Interestingly, I watched an adult friend of mine dancing to some funky music, and my kids were all laughing with delight. I said, “If I were doing that, you’d be mortified.” They agreed.
A mom just don’t get no respect.
David Fraley says
I’m enjoying these vacation posts, Ann! More, please!