We have decided to take another long road trip. Long summer vacations are part of Joel’s legacy for me. During the ten months that Joel was in active treatment I hated not being able to take the family anywhere. As soon as he had a long enough break in treatment and permission from his doctors we took a road trip to a film festival in San Antonio. We had a wonderful time and even spent a day at Sea World. When we returned Joel’s MRI showed that his cancer had returned and he was declared terminal. I was always so glad we had taken that trip.

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In the three years that followed that declaration we took long road trips whenever we could, traveling to both coasts of the country, visiting amusement parks and museums and just trying to cram ourselves into close quarters for as long as possible. For Ryan and I at least, a month long road trip with our kids is one of our favorite things to do, and we find any excuse we can to justify it. Usually we combine it with one of Ryan’s work trips to show the game at a conference. This time we are traveling for about five weeks, hitting two such conferences and spending weeks with family. We are so excited for them to meet Zoe.

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We had only one week out of five where we were going to stay in a hotel. We chose the cheapest we could find and discovered when we arrived the low price was justified. We decided to make the best of it, knowing the rest of the trip we would be staying for free with family. Then when the week was half up, one of Ryan’s friends asked us if we wanted to stay at his beach house. We were so amazed at the offer, and when we got to the charming beach house we were even more delighted. Giant windows look out on to the ocean and the deck opens up to the beach. We have been having such a fun time enjoying the Oregon coast. Ryan works all day, but that’s the other way we can justify long road trips is that he can keep working wherever we go. I brought a friend along to keep me company since Ryan has deadlines with his game coming up soon.

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Anyway, we are having such a fun summer, soaking up the ┬áprecious time crammed together in close quarters, thankful for unexpected blessings, and missing Joel everywhere along the way. I’ll post photos soon.

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