Happy New Year! Is it too late to say that? If so, too bad because it’s my first opportunity! I only recently returned home to True North Winter (as in -41 degrees Celsius and an extreme cold warning) from my EPIC 13-day road trip spanning six states, one province and 50 hours of driving (not by me, I read 4 novels while my husband drove – thanks Hon)! It was quite a Christmas holiday. My hubby and I had this epic surprise planned for our family for weeks – and almost blew it every.single.day.
Fortunately, we kept up the ruse right till Christmas morning!
This post is all about our travels but never fear, I have some packing words of wisdom that must be shared and will be shared in another post AND of course some chronicles of inter-state thrifting! (That’s supposed to be dramatic foreshadowing, stay tuned.) From our home to Anaheim is a 26-hour drive which we spread out over three days in each direction. For any of you thinking we are cray for driving, let me remind you that the last time we traveled at Christmas and flew, we spent a fortune on flights, slept overnight in the San Francisco airport, and then the rental vehicle was another small fortune. It was simply out of our budget this time, and anyway, road trips are way more fun!! We left before noon on Christmas day to start the first 8-hour leg of the trip from Leduc County, Alberta to Great Falls, Montana…
We stopped in Lethbridge for a sad McDonald’s Christmas Day supper then crossed the border into Montana, arrived in Great Falls, settled into our hotel for the night, and got up bright and early to head to the next stop…
It was another long drive to get to Salt Lake with lots of snacks and movies and American candy from the gas stations. #healthnut
We drove around a bit and went to a Belgian waffle breakfast joint that was delicious. I made my kids speak French which was AWESOME. And then we carried on to Vegas, Baby!
The last leg of the trip took us straight to Anaheim!! From the saddest place on earth to the happiest place on earth IMHO.
We stayed for 7 nights at the Sheraton just off-site of the Disney Parks. Our hotel room was perfectly adequate (and we even saw the bass player for Aerosmith – our only celeb sighting)!
Disneyland was so magical!!
The weather throughout the week… not so much…
The line for the Harry Potter ride was as long as 4 hours at different points during the day. We finally decided to just go for it and wait as long as necessary but then a kind staff member gave us a front-of-line pass!!!!! #savedtheday And the ride WAS amazing!!
After non-stop week-long fun, we packed up and started our trek homeward bound, this time forgoing Vegas and taking a fairly significant detour in order to pass through Arizona and see Monument Valley!
We wanted to go to the Grand Canyon too but
I spent too much time thrifting and it would have been dark it was cloudy and snowy with poor visibility. Monument Valley however was breathtaking.
The road home felt longer, naturally. We stayed in Flagstaff instead of Vegas then headed to Salt Lake City, Great Falls and home, traveling from California to Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Montana and finally Alberta.
We stopped in at Cilantro and Chive in Lacombe for our final vacation supper and it was so good!
Epic. The whole trip was epic. I am so thankful for my husband’s excellent driving and my kids’ excellent traveling! We are beyond blessed and filled with gratitude that we got to create such memorable scenes together. I’m already dreaming of when we can go back!