For a while when I was a kid, we lived in Louisiana around my dad’s family. Perhaps my memory is fuzzy but I honestly don’t think there were many days when we lived there that I wasn’t with my cousin, Angela. I remember when we moved back to Indiana the thought of leaving her broke my heart. She recalls me trying to hide the day we started the drive north, thinking if my parents couldn’t find me, we wouldn’t leave.
We made quite a team. She was the lizard catching, craw dad head sucking, fearless one. And I was the scream like a girl, refuse to get in the water, scaredy cat one.

Be jealous. Of our stylin’ dresses and that wall mural.

We spent many years apart, back in the days before email, texting, Facebook and the like, just seeing each other here and there. This past fall, we decided to meet for a girls only weekend in Nashville with one of our other cousins, Amy.

chaos in Nashville

After that trip I decided I didn’t want to go that many years again without seeing her so Jake and I decided to take a little solo road trip to Mississippi to see Angela and her family. She had no idea we were coming. I had been in cahoots with her husband, Michael, to get the whole thing arranged.

The morning we left on our “top secret” adventure.

Five seconds after we left on our top secret adventure. He would wake for feedings.

Jake wants these for his dad’s truck. I had to veto.

Angela, her husband Michael & her daughters Mia and Madden.

Cousins reunited

Newly introduced cousins making memories, my son Jake and Angela’s daughter, Mia.

We spent one afternoon swimming at the local lake. I honestly couldn’t tell you how many hours Angela and I spent swimming in Caddo Lake.

Jake and Mia swimming with their new canine friend.

As we were swimming we noticed what we thought was a dead fish. Turned out it was a very lethargic fish & this is me holding it. Which if you know me, you know why I would take a picture of this. It’s a big freaking deal!

Getting ready to head to the movies after a day of swimming. I love this guy!

When we got back to our hotel, there was a beautiful semi truck and trailer belonging to the the Dallas cowboys, Jake’s favorite team. He was so excited. Based on some of their past troubles it could be the team transportation to drug rehab.

Jake & I had a blast in the pool and hot tub at our hotel late one night. He hugged me & told me this was the best trip ever. Moments like that are going to be few and far between as we enter the teen years so I’ll take it.

On our way back north, we stopped at my high school friend Dan’s house near Nashville, TN. I heard a yell & realized jake shot dan with his automatic air soft rifle. I was getting ready to punish jake when Dan quickly explained he asked him to. Then I didn’t know who needed punished. Silly boys. They never grow up.

And unfortunately this is how our trip ended. My car, which I hate and Matt loves, refused to start the next morning in Nashville. Matt came to get us and haul the car home. It was truly a moment of marital bliss for us. Lol. I started out texting Matt when the car wouldn’t start but quickly moved to phone calls when autocorrect kept changing my adjectives to silly words like “ducking”.

All in all we had a wonderful time. A solo road trip with a kid who will quickly not want to hang out with mom and seeing some truly wonderful people. I think we will be crazy enough to do it again next summer.