We just got back from a great trip out West that included Devil's Tower, Yellowstone, Jewel Cave, the Badlands... Lots to say, too many pictures, but before I try to find time to sort it out and share any of it I just wanted to take a moment to appreciate the glories of returning home.
And being clean! This was our first camping experience with the kids, and we really enjoyed it, but I'm amazed when on a trip like that how quickly you shift from ideas of what is "clean" to what is "clean enough." I did manage to wash my hair after a week in a sink at a campground and it was wonderful, but nothing compared to getting into the shower when we arrived home in the middle of the night.
Being home is so nice. Adventures are great, but I love being in my own bed. In a perfect world we would have Star Trek transporter technology that would allow you to go anywhere for the day and return to your own bed at night. (Or at least provide you that option when the air mattress in your tent gets flat.)
I already miss being with everyone all the time, though. I've been swamped with repairs at work, and am back to seeing my kids just at the beginning and end of the day, and it's not anywhere near as good as being able to share every meal and every walk and every drive. Aden's even off on another adventure with a friend to help tend a lighthouse on Rock Island for a week, so we're down to just two kids.
It's fun having the dog back. He's REALLY happy we're home and to be with us again.
It's nice to have all my clothes options again instead of the same three shirts. (Not that my wardrobe is interesting--it's mostly stuff I can afford to get glue on, but still....)
Mostly it's just good to feel grounded. I'm fascinated by people who are able to function well while having to move all the time. I know people who aren't in the same place for more than a couple of years and have to uproot, and I don't think I would handle that well. I need a home base to return to. I'm glad to be back.