Westward Expansion, day 1

Lilly-Lady-Goodbye-PinehurstIt wasn’t hard really to leave Pinehurst. Sure, we were saying goodbye to Tim and to dear friends–the emotional part was difficult, but actually pulling out of the driveway of 11 Cypress Lane–the physical part– was quite uneventful.  Tim carefully packed the trunk, Lady jumped into the backseat with Lilly and I had enough starter candy to get us to Nashville, our first stop on the cross country trip.

I asked Lilly what music she wanted to listen to first. Both of us had loaded extensive playlists for our listening pleasure–my erred on the side of folk americana, Lilly had a hodgepodge of pop, Top 20 and random odd music from her sister Lauren.  Lilly chose Vampire Weekend, M-79 for the first song and from there, we just let the band carry us until the album was played through.

As we were driving west, I kept remarking how beautiful Western Carolina is; the rolling hills, green grass and that Carolina blue sky that just isn’t matched anywhere else.  Maybe a twinge of nostalgia as we closed this chapter of our family life. Goodbye to the Tar Heels, Camp Lejeune, shopping at Streets of Southpoint.

The rest stops along I-40 were fabulous. Clean, gorgeous landscapes and plenty of water.

The rest stops along I-40 were fabulous. Clean, gorgeous landscapes and plenty of water.

Tried to take a photo of each state's welcome!

Tried to take a photo of each state’s welcome!

Stephanie brought a special treat for Lilly-a full box of scotchmallows from Sees Candies

Stephanie brought a special treat for Lilly-a full box of scotchmallows from Sees Candies

Only I would make sure to pack a 22x22 framed collage for the trip west.

Only I would make sure to pack a 22×22 framed collage for the trip west.

It was smooth driving through Greensboro, Asheville, Knoxville and finally Nashville. We picked up my sister Stephanie at the airport, knocking off at least 8 hours of driving for her, and spent the night at the first of 3 La Quinta hotels (you do know that they are “pet friendly”, right?)