Vacation to Iowa!

Vacation to Iowa was great! It was nice to get away from the daily grind for once. No rush hour traffic. No cell phone. No worries!

We left at about 3 AM on Thursday night.Β  It took us about 14 hours and two tanks of gas to get from Ohio to Storm Lake, IA. (Can you say “Empty wallet and pooped?”) Have you ever driven across the Midwest? It is sooo exciting!!! Here’s a picture I took through the rear view mirror with my camera phone to show you just how much fun we were all having… πŸ˜†

Momma and Ace sleeping in the car on the way to Iowa

We stayed at a hotel in Storm Lake called King’s Pointe. We reserved a double queen suite with a crib and a lake view a few weeks before hand, but when we arrived we got a handicap double queen room with a parking lot view. πŸ™

The handicap room would not work because it had no bath tub for Ace, and we really wanted the lake view with a balcony (the hotel was non-smoking and the balcony would be our smoking area πŸ˜† )

After a bit of persistence they gave us the room we reserved and all was well.

Dad and Momma on the balcony at Kings Pointe in Storm Lake Iowa

The hotel had an indoor and outdoor water park! (I was so excited…I’m just like a little boy when it comes to this kinda stuff πŸ˜† )

King’s Pointe Indoor Water Park Resort

The closest Ace has been to going swimming was splashing around in the bath tub, so I was very curious to how he would react to the swimming pool. After a few minutes of scared-shitless-ness accompanied by a white-knuckled-death-grip on Dad, Ace started to relax and enjoy himself!

We had so much fun being in the water with him that we really didn’t get out to take many pictures of his first time swimming! Here is one that I managed to snap of Ace and Momma lounging in the pool…

Momma and Ace In The Pool

Even though he thoroughly enjoyed the swimming pool, he was utterly amazed by the fountain…

Ace Staring At The Fountain

…or was it the Bud Light sign? πŸ˜†

One reason we went to Iowa was to visit some old friends who’s daughter was graduating from high school. We went to the graduation, which was in a small non-air-conditioned (Can you say “Hot As Balls?”) gymnasium.

Ace has been self-propelled for a while now and really likes it that way. Ever since he has learned to move under his own power, he absolutely forbids to sit still. It was hot in the gymnasium… sweaty, and smelled like the locker room after football practice! So, I took off Ace’s restraints (joking!) and took him outside to play in the shade while Momma stayed inside to watch the graduation ceremony.

We get outside and there is no shade! So I’m chasing after Ace in the burning sunlight on concrete hot enough to fry an egg when I smell something a bit different than the sweaty smell I had become accustomed to in the gymnasium… You guessed it…I smelled a baby biscuit getting baked in Ace’s diaper!

Luckily I grabbed the diaper bag on the way outside, but there was no where to change him.Β  So, Ace and I head off on a two mile trek to the car where we enjoyed a fresh diaper, a drink, and 45 minutes worth of gas wasting air-conditioned heaven! πŸ˜†

The drive back to Ohio was not so nice. Ace had some of his molars breaking through the skin, and he was not enjoying the car ride a single bit.Β  So, we stopped half way and grabbed a hotel room in Illinois.Β  Luckily, I travel a lot for work and earn TONS of hotel points, so we got a room for free for the night. The hotel had a pool where we spent most of the evening splashing around…

After a good swim and getting a good nights sleep we headed out in the morning to finish the last half of our journey home. We took our time. We stopped for a packed lunch at a rest stop with Mr. Smarty Pants himself…

Smarty pants eating his lunch at a rest stop

…and then Ace napped most of the rest of the way home…

Ace relaxing in the car on the way home from Iowa

Despite the sore rear ends from sitting in the car for over 28 hours, the mix up with the hotel room, the incredibly hot gymnasium, the fried diaper biscuit, and the crying restlessness of a teething child strapped into the back seat of a gas guzzling SUV…we had a very good time and enjoyed the visit with our old friends!

Back to the grind… Ughhh… πŸ˜†


  1. Dad of Divas says:

    Sounds lik a wonderful trip. The first picture sort of scared me and made me think – who’s driving, but I guess you made it there and back in one piece. We just took a trip and the cost was doubled this time with the amout of gas that we had to spend – talk about empty wallet. Anyway – thanks for sharing your story in only the unique way that you can!

  2. Angela says:

    Love the pics…and love your stories of your trips, etc. Awesome Writer!
    Love ya’ll.
    Ace is getting so big!!
    Hope all is well!

  3. JLow says:

    That first pic, I thought you actually wanted to capture the “kodak moment”, by actually stopping and getting out of the car and snapping from outside the car / windscreen, with wife asleep with a gaping mouth!

    Cause that’s what I would have done, post that pic up for the world to see her so dignified!

    Sounds like a blast of a vacation!

  4. Kim says:

    28 hours in a car with a teething child.. did you get an award when you pulled in your house?? Brave, brave people you are!! πŸ™‚

    Love the first photo.. that is too funny. And the towel photo is just adorable.. Glad you guys had a great time… stinky fried diaper biscuit and all!!

  5. Momo Fali says:

    He looks like a Jedi in that picture with the Bud Light sign!

    We always stay at hotels with pools when we take long trips. We make the kids swim for an hour or so in the morning, then have breakfast and head out. They usually sleep until we stop for lunch!

  6. Pete Aldin says:

    Man I hope you had some good driving music to listen to on that trip.

    That picture at the fountain looks really Jedi. It’s cool.

  7. The grin on his chops in the pool is brilliant.

    Getting cuter all the time.

  8. DaddyKV says:

    I love road trips. I just cant afford them now. πŸ™‚ Looks like a lot of fun.

  9. CableGirl says:

    Sounds like you had a great time….

    Gotta love swimming pools and water parks as a way to cool the angry toddler. πŸ™‚

  10. Jared says:

    @Dad Of Divas: The mirror makes it looks like Momma fell asleep while driving… hehe!

    @Angela: Thanks Angie!

    @JLow: LOL!

    @Kim: No awards…unless you consider a headache an award. πŸ˜€

    @Momo: I though he was very Jedi-ish looking as well. I agree. Pools make the hotel. πŸ˜€

    @Pete: I’m weird. I tend to drive in silence. I know shoot me now! πŸ˜€

    @XBox: Thanks man!

    @DaddyKV: It was pricey, yet worth it. πŸ˜€

    @CableGirl: Getting fussy? Go to the pool. Won’t sleep? Go to the pool. I think the pool is the cure all. πŸ˜€

  11. tanya25m says:

    Looks like ya’ll had a blast! Love the pics… Ace looks so big!! πŸ™‚