Saturday, November 8, 2014

Road Trippin' in the Fall

Nothing soothes me more than a road trip.  When I'm stressed and busy, there is nothing quite like a road trip to help me unwind.  Last month, it was almost as if God just placed the perfect opportunity for me to enjoy a road trip.  In the midst of an incredibly busy schedule in multiple areas of life, plus additional stressors flying at me, we had a missions meeting scheduled in St. Louis.  My hubby was at a Mercy Chefs site in Mississippi the full week prior to the event and was going to have to drive to St. Louis directly from his feeding site.  I considered flying to St. Louis and meeting him there, but in the end, decided a road trip was truly what I needed-alone time with God on the road.

I stopped many times along the way; the first stop was in Hulbert, Oklahoma at Sequoyah State Park.  I just enjoyed the beauty of the area for a little while...the changing color of the leaves, the view of the lake, pine straw (we don't have pine trees in our area of Texas), the sound of the leaves crunching under my feet, even the smell of the forest.  As I was leaving town, I saw a tin man that I just had to stop and take a picture of. 

Spavinaw State Park was my next stop.  This was a gorgeous little park...a dam was on the far end of the park, and a huge cliff ran the full length of the campgrounds, with a creek running below the cliff.  The foliage here had lots of colors spread throughout.  Most Oklahoma State Parks are free to visit (camping does have a charge), so it was nice that I was able to stop at several of them without paying an entrance fee.

Once I left the state park, I crossed the bridge, and drove up a small incline on the other side of the lake to this gorgeous view.

Later I stopped in Bernice at Grand Lakes State Park.  It had a nice cement trail along the lake there.  I was very impressed with the parks in Oklahoma.  As you can see, it was starting to get dark, so it was my last stop of the night.

I spent the night in Miami, Oklahoma, one of the stops along Historic Route 66.  I did a quick check on TripAdvisor and Yelp to figure out what unique restaurants were in the area, and came across multiple great reviews for Waylan's Ku-Ku Burger.  I wasn't incredibly hungry, so I ordered the Ku-Ku fries (essentially chili cheese fries) and a drink.  I'm not sure why I forgot tot take a picture of dinner, but this was a great choice that I would love to go to again with my hubby or kids.

The next morning, I decided to drive along Historic Route 66 for a little while.

I stopped briefly in Riverton, Kansas at the Rainbow Bridge.  It is the last surviving Marsh arch bridge along the whole road.  It is only open to one direction of traffic, and a new bridge is just east of it, which most traffic now takes.

After that I stopped in downtown Galena, Kansas just a block or two off Route 66 to catch a glimpse of Tow Mater.

It was at this point that I realized my slow trip was about over, as I had to get on the road to our conference.  I had a wonderful time decompressing, and my road trip with detours was just what I needed to relieve stress.  I got back on the interstate in Missouri to be greeted at the welcome center by this guy.  I thought this might mean I would be experiencing a great deal of road construction, but thankfully the slow-downs were minimal.  

It was great to be reunited with my hubby after about a week.  We had a wonderful conference, and enjoyed a little bit of St. Louis before having to head back home.

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