TRAVELING WITH GEORGE, JACK, AND PETER

The three of us have recently taken male companions with us on our trips.  And they have not been our significant others.


DENISE:

I learned a long time ago that my husband did not share my love of travel.  After about a minute and a half of sightseeing, he is ready to find a place to eat.  And then after another minute and a half, he is ready to find another place to eat.  This repeats until he is ready to find a place to take a nap.  He could never really enjoy hanging around while Tessa and I take way too many pictures of lone trees and mountains.  

Don't get me wrong, he would try to look interested, but all the while, I would know that he was just biding his time until the next opportunity to interact with a menu.  And while Tessa and I enjoy interesting eating experiences and trying new things, Michael prefers to sticking with his standbys of steak, hamburgers, or chicken parmesan.  I am not sure why he even accepts a menu when offered one.  Occasionally, he will order chicken salad.  Oh, and he is definitely into all sorts of healthy snacking.

BANGKOK CURRY AT  NOODLES & CO

One of our challenges or goals on this 21-day trip we're currently taking out West is to stick to a reasonable food budget.  Our plan has been to always eat breakfast in, purchase lunch at unique places when possible, and eat dinner back at our room with George.

Tessa and I decided early on that in order to save money, George would have to join us on our adventure.  We even brought an adapter if we need to put him to work on the road. Like my husband, we, too, have our standbys--one being grilled cheese.  We knew that no matter where we ended up at the end of the day and no matter what the experience, George would be waiting to provide us with our cheap, down-home comfort food.

So I wrapped him up in plastic--secretly hoping that the procedure would shave calories off of our meals--and put him in our carry-on--kind of like a pet or something.  You can imagine how much fun it was to explain his presence when we went through airport security.  Those folks are not the type to pose for pictures.

But we are.

So while we waited to board our plane, we set up my camera's automatic timer and tried to get a photo of both of us.  We wanted to showcase our choices of nice, comfortable, versatile outfits.  As a bonus and keeping with our theme, we got a lot of stares from the people around us.  One even offered to help, which we politely declined as we laughed a little too much and a little too loudly.

Upon arriving at our first Airbnb, George came out of his wrappings and took his place of importance in front of the toaster and next to the microwave.

And so far, bringing George along has been a great idea.  You may notice the damage that he sustained a while back to his right side.  When our trip is over, we decided to allow him to retire in the West.  He has worked hard for us, and we will miss him.  His replacement is slated to begin work the day we get home, but we know the sandwiches will never be the same.


KELLY:

Children love to get attached to something when they are little.  Something that usually is a rare find and therefore takes on a preciousness like that of your heirloom jewelry.  No mom wants to be without that item when bedtime arrives or traveling.  

We travel with Peter.  Peter Pan.  Skinny Peter Pan to be exact.  Jett loves Peter Pan.  While cleaning out the craft room to build the new bathroom, I came across an iron-on Peter Pan patch.  A skinny Peter Pan as Jett calls it.  I hadn't been able to find a toy Peter Pan for him so this had to do. 

He goes to church with us.  Walmart.  Swim meets.  Everywhere.  

Do you know how incredibly hard it is to keep track of skinny Peter Pan?  Especially when he likes to place him in crazy spots to keep safe--like the bubble gum machine.  Very hard.

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As hard as it is, I wouldn't trade him for anything.  The memories of him playing with him will be priceless.  I did find him a real Peter Pan figure to play with, but it isn't the same.  So we continue to carry skinny Peter Pan wherever we go which recently meant that he traveled with us and three other families to the beach.


TESSA:

Just minutes before we left our house for the airport to board a plane taking us to Colorado, my sister walked into the kitchen and gave me a fabulous idea: Bring a Lego guy and take pictures of him everywhere we go.  Now, I was automatically smitten with the idea and went to find the best adventurer I know: Jack--Captain Jack Sparrow to be precise. 

"Snow in June?  What kind of nonsense is this?  Where's my ship?!?"

"Snow in June?  What kind of nonsense is this?  Where's my ship?!?"

Captain Jack has been my friend since childhood, his swashbuckling schemes and overall sarcastic, mischievous self inspiring me for years to want to be a pirate.  I still quote him at least every other day, so as you can see, it wasn't too difficult of a choice.  

Jack enjoying the view from a snowy Pike's Peak. 

Jack enjoying the view from a snowy Pike's Peak. 

Trying to hitch a ride to the Dunes.  It 's tough being a land-locked pirate. 

Trying to hitch a ride to the Dunes.  It 's tough being a land-locked pirate. 

Jack exploring the cliff dwellings.

Jack exploring the cliff dwellings.

Feeling a bit homesick for the sea at Mesa Verde Lake (ahem, puddle).

Feeling a bit homesick for the sea at Mesa Verde Lake (ahem, puddle).

Can you find Jack?  I think he finally found his ride! Hope he can hold on tight!

Can you find Jack?  I think he finally found his ride! Hope he can hold on tight!

As you can see, Jack and I have been having a grand time adventuring in the West.  You could say that all my dreams are coming true (I'm really not kidding).  Watch out for more adventures from Tessa and Jack! 

"Bring me that horizon."