My family actually went on a vacation this year!  It took some juggling but we managed to find an entire week where we could hang out together as a family.  Our destination - Branson, MO.

The 10-hour drive to our vacation spot gave me time to relax a bit.  I even learned a few things!  Here are 10 of those learning moments that I had while on the road to the Ozarks:

  1. I-35 is a very long road.  Just hop on and it will take you all the way to Laredo, Texas (which is extremely close to Mexico!)
  2. There seems to be some sort of tire issue in Missouri.  I’m not sure what is going on but as soon as you get to Missouri, there are pieces of used tires all over the sides of the road.  Why? I have no idea but it seemed to be an epidemic that Iowa and Minnesota don’t have.
  3. I am not a fan of Kansas City roads.  It is a mess, plain and simple. Did they start a project and run out of money?  Can people actually drive safely in this town on these roads with no lines? These are answers I don’t know but I do know that I wasn’t impressed.  
  4. Bathroom stalls are very short in Iowa.  I am not that tall but check out this bathroom stall in Dows, IA!  Don’t worry...no one else was in the bathroom...I looked over all the stalls first to make sure ;)  We found another one that was even shorter just South of Des Moines.  (check out the Instagram photo below or here!)
  5. Hickory Park always needs to be a stopping point if you are by Ames, IA!  This is my stomping ground from my college days (Go Cyclones!) and they have A.Maz.Ing food!
  6. Driving with children is now enjoyable.  Yes, I actually said those words. This was the first trip we didn’t have anyone throwing up, crying, and there was no fighting.  One of my kids basically screamed for 2 years straight anytime we got in a car so this really was a bit of heaven.
  7. Long car rides are the only time I can read a book.  I’m a mom of three kids so that pretty much sums up what I’ve been doing with my “free time” the last 16 years.
  8. Minnesotans get the gold star on cleanliness!  This goes with that tire issue that I pointed out in number 2, but the amount of garbage on the side of the road in Missouri just isn’t here in Minnesota.  We get upset about cigarette butts. Well, it looks like a garbage truck threw up all over the ditches in Missouri.
  9. Fireworks are sometimes sold in the back of gas stations - in a secret room.
  10. There are a whole lot of country radio stations going on in Southern Iowa and Missouri.  Since I am a DJ on a country station...I knew all the words to all the songs! My family appreciated this part the most.  :)

What have you learned on a road trip?  Let me know on my Facebook page (here) or Instagram (click this one!)

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