(or, the further adventures of Buzz Lightyear and Mrs. Callowag)
It has been a looooooonnng winter. It truly felt like it would never end.
We spend a lot of time home-bound in the winter, and at the doctors office. Our record was six times in five days this year. We try and find fun things to do, but no matter how creative you get, cabin fever is real and you just have to have a break.
The kids and I have been planning our spring break trip since August. We were going to spend ten days in Idaho with my sister, and further explore Yellowstone and the Tetons. We had every detail planned out. So what do you think happened the week before we were planning on leaving? That’s right, bronchitis and Influenza, the real deal. I was crushed. Because of another immune compromised person out there, I knew we couldn’t risk it, even if the kids were by some miracle better by the time we got there.
Plot Twist! (I’ve taught the kids to say that whenever our plans change, and they change a lot!). I decided to postpone any kind of trip for a few days and let the kids get past the illness and the incubation period so we wouldn’t risk passing it on. But while I waited, and got them better, I planned.
Instead of our great Yellowstone/Tetons adventure we had been planning, we planned out a trip a little closer to home.
Monday, once I was sure they were better, and weren’t contagious, we loaded up the car, and got the heck out of Dodge. It was the best choice.
We headed south to Bryce Canyon National Park, and then further south to Zion’s National Park. All in all we spent seven days exploring and being together. It was not without many plot twists (including an FPIES reaction, blizzard, and POTTY TRAINING), but it was magical, and we had the most amazing time together.
I had many moments where I felt slightly panicky, for being so far away from trusted drs, and hospitals that know us. It was a huge step out of my comfort zone, but I was very well prepared.
Never underestimate what a camera will do for a six year old’s self esteem. I heard such gems as “This should be in a magazine!”, “I’m so good at this!”, and “Wow! Look at me! I’m a real picture taker person! And I’m good at it!”.
Another fun thing for kids is participating in the National Park’s Jr. Ranger program. We did programs in both parks, and the kids had a blast. They are free, and in the end they get sworn in, and get a free Jr. Ranger Badge.
**Can I let you in on a little secret, fellow parents of medically fragile children? The National Parks will give you a FREE *LIFETIME* National Parks pass (to every National Park!) to anyone with a life long disease, disability, sensory issue, or disorder. All you need is a note from a doctor or therapist explaining the need/diagnosis. This saved us more than $100 this trip on Park fees. Go here to find out the info needed, or feel free to contact me, and I will help you find a station near you!