For the most part though, I loved driving through the country and stopping to see family and watching the scenery. We ate deep dish pizza with a cousin in Chicago and we stopped to see some cousins near Nashville. We watched the snow melt, and then the grass get greener, and then the snow reappear when we got to the mountains. We watched the sun rise once or twice as well. My favorite time while we were driving was on Friday morning, we were going through the Smoky Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains in Tennessee and North Carolina. It was absolutely gorgeous! It was in the 30's or 40's and sunny, but there was freshly fallen snow all around us.
This weekend staying in Jacksonville has been a nice break from the car. Of course, it has also been wonderful to spend time with my brother and sister-in-law. We got to see the base where my brother is stationed (he's a Marine), which was really interesting. Today we even got to go to the beach! It was only in the 60's and windy, but it was sunny and the weather felt amazing to us folks from Minnesota. Definitely the warmest weather I've felt in quite a while.
This is their dog, Juliet. Usually she's terrified of the water, apparently today is the first time she's ever willingly gone into anything larger than a puddle.
The water was freezing cold, but it felt wonderful nonetheless to have bare feet in the sand and waves.
Tomorrow we leave for some more driving. Hurray! (I'm only being slightly sarcastic...) We're going to stay in Virginia Beach for a night and see yet more cousins. I never realized until this trip how many cousins I have scattered across the country! Our hotel is directly on the beach, and I'm pretty sure in the middle of the boardwalk, so I am excited for that.
That's about all I have to say for tonight, I should probably start getting ready for bed. We're going to try for a fairly early start in the morning. I'll keep you updated on my adventures when I can!