We had some....minor mishaps to say the least. The first of which happened only 1.5 hours into our trip. We were supposed to merge onto I-90 but ended up in the express lane that had a barrier blocking us from that exit....we ended up driving down that stretch of the I-5 about 3 times and ended up on Mercer Island somehow. We had GPS as well as 2 iPhone with siri for directions and we still managed to be lost for about an hour. Great way to start the trip. While it was stressful, I have this obnoxious habit of laughing in tense situations and I couldn't stop laughing and I think Haley probably wanted to punch me in the throat (not really she was laughing a bit too but she was stressed!!). It was my job to direct her since I was the passenger at this point. Finally we wove our way thru Mercer Island, at one point Haley thought we were in Europe and started driving on the left side of the road randomly I thought she knew what she was doing and that we had a turn coming up but when she saw a car headed straight towards us (while we were backing up to make the turn we almost missed) she was like, WHAT AM I DOING?. That made me laugh again....
Eventually we made our way and only had 2 other mishaps. I remembered that we should say a travel prayer about 15 minutes after we left so I said it and I think we really were blessed because of it. At one point we were in the middle of nowhere, literally and Haley looked down and realized that we had 30 miles worth of gas left and 36 miles to the nearest gas station, woops. I used my trusty Siri to find us a gas station that we completely just randomly chose an exit hoping it was have a gas station, it did.
It was smooth sailing for the next many many hours. We switched off driving about every 4 hours so we each drove half way which was good, we were able to take little naps inbetween our driving which helped us drive straight thru. We only made 4 stops which was so great. They were to get gas and potty breaks. We talked, laughed, slept, drove, listened to music, tried to listen to 4 different books on tape, finally decided to listen to a BYU devotional about the spirit world which was excellent.
I had seen that the Brigham City temple was having an open house for August-Septemberish and I REALLY wanted to stop there but knew I wouldn't have time with such a quick trip planned. But when I saw we were in Brigham City I was driving and I saw the temple off in the distance and begged Haley to stop there (didn't have to beg too hard :)). We had no idea where it was but we followed Captain Moroni who took us right to the temple. It was so amazing. We both were in street clothes so we were just going to walk around and take pictures but soon decided to take the tour as well. I was glad we did, it is such a huge and pretty temple, one of my new favorites. We both felt so relaxed and calm after our tiring, hectic day. It was a good 2 hour detour though so we were ready to get back on the road after taking 50 pictures.
At this point we knew we were going to stay with a family in our home ward who were on vacation in a rental
Our one last setback happened when we were about 20 minutes away from the rental house. Once again we realized we were low on gas, but we needed to find a Shell station to use Haley's card. Well I guess Utah doesn't have many Shell stations so by the time we exited the freeway, the mile gauge had been blinking ---- for about 10 minutes, woops. We ended up getting off some CRAZY freeway intersection that was terrifying. After getting gas, it took us about 15 minutes to get back on the freeway. our little Magellan friend was telling us the right way to go but we thought we knew more than it did and didn't listen to it (object lesson?). We ended up passing through the insane intersection again, passing the freeway entrance, driving 2 miles down the road, turning onto a dark side street, turning around again and almost passed the freeway entrance again. I made Haley do a very illegal U-turn that scared her a bit and I felt bad but it allowed us to finally get back onto the freeway. We were very grateful to get to Draper at this point.
We got our stuff inside the house, showered, slept SO good in our room with a king sized bed, sauna, HUGE jacuzzi tub, fireplace, and walk-in shower. Intense.
Haley took off early the next morning. I was invited to hang out with the Hoyts for the next couple days which I was grateful for since I didn't really have any way to get around by myself. Thursday afternoon we went to Sweets candy factory and got a behind the scenes tour by one of Tim Hoyts mission buddies. It was SO fun, not quite Willy-Wonka-ish like I had hoped :) but still awesome to see how candy is made. They supply like 80% of the world's saltwater taffy. So that taffy you're eating comes from this place and I saw them make it!! It's such an awesome process. Plus at the end, we got to buy whatever we wanted from the candy shop and got a special friends discount on all the candy we wanted. Score. I might have purchased 5 pounds of salt water taffy, they had such cool flavors that I've never tried/heard of.
After the tour, we needed some real food so we stopped at Cafe Rio for my very first time. Delicious. Seriously I want it so bad now that I'm home. We were going to head into Provo next, so the three of us girls loaded into the car and started driving but poor little Hailey Hoyt was dehydrated and felt sick so I volunteered to stay back at the house with her so mom-Hoyt could go visit her mom in Provo. After a bit 2 of the boys asked if we wanted to go see the movie Brave, then another brother got home and a little while later we took off to see it. The drive there was an adventure and an intense game of corners in the backseat. It was a good-ish movie. When we got home, we watched a couple episodes of How it's Made and a really old episode of the Batman show, so ridiculously funny.
We had to pack up a bit that night and the next morning we packed up the rest of our stuff. We planned to leave at 6am but left around 9:15ish. Our trip home will be blogged about next since this post is already too long, but here's a little picture to wet your appetite.