Detours are interesting. Whether you are traveling through life or actually traveling on the road, sometimes we are told we have to take another path. Something has happened and the way we normally would travel has a road block, or is just not right for us at the time.

We traveled to Washington state this past weekend because my husband’s grandmother passed away. She was one of my favorite people in the whole wide world. And while I am sad she will no longer be a sassy, spunky presence in our life, I am happy she is finally reunited with her sweetheart after 15 years apart.

While we we headed to Washington there was an accident on the freeway involving a semi truck that was carrying hazardous material. The entire freeway closed down and all of us travelers were told to take another path. We knew this would add another hour and a half to an already 12 hour drive but decided to look at it as an adventure. We had no idea what lay ahead on the highway detour and the kids were excited.

It was a prettier drive :) And 3/4 of the way through our detour we came across the most darling little town called Prairie City, Oregon. We chatted with the super nice gas attendant for a good 20 minutes. He had been to our town before. The we decided to check out the antique stores that were  also on main street. Our kids each picked out a tiny little treasure and we chatted with the owner for a half an hour.


We got back in the car and my kids exclaimed that this was the “best trip ever”. Normally we plug along and only stop for gas. With a 12 hour drive ahead of us, we don’t normally think we have time for anything else.  The charm of that little town that looks like it is from another time period drew us in. And it made the whole trip more enjoyable because we had taken a much needed break and tried something new.

If you have been reading my blog for awhile then you know my husband is in the architecture field and that the architecture world has been hit hard with the economy the way it has been. It is getting better, and he currently has a job, but he has been laid off 3 times in the last 3 years. I like to look at those as detours. We had to move off the path we were on and take a break.

Had he not been laid off he would have plugged along with his job and not taken many breaks or vacations because of trying to get ahead financially with bills and such. But the lay offs forced us to take a break. We were able to spend time together doing things we may not have done otherwise. They were detours that will make it take longer to pay off student loans and get ahead but they were worth it. My kids look back at those months when my husband was home as the “best time ever”.

Do you ever have detours in life or in traveling that have ended up being a blessing in disguise? I would love to hear your story. Leave a comment with your story :)


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  1. says

    You’re right, often those detours are the moments we remember most. Otherwise it is just a boring uneventful day. I know that we often don’t see those blessings when they happen, but after some time we realize it. I’m glad you are able to see it that way, it will make your life happier =) Sorry about your grandma!

  2. says

    It is hard to see it when you are in it, but it is always cool to look back in hindsight and see the blessing of the situation. Detours can be beautiful…

  3. Kelsey says

    I have had some HUGE detours in my life but I am so grateful for them. I think they make us stronger and hopefully better for having successfully navigated them. I’m so sorry about your Grandma but I am glad that you were able to spend some time with your family.

  4. Lauren Burnett says

    I’ve had many detours… But, once, during a trip in Spain, I missed my flight and was by myself. I had limited funds, so I had to exchange my ticket, and I was too tired to look for hotels and too broke PLUS my flight was only a mere 6 hours away. I slept under a bench, with my bag as my pillow and another bag under my knees to ensure it wouldn’t be stolen easily.
    Under a bench! I awoke with a bustling airport at 5am, not too many weird glances since people were busy.

    But, I was proud that I was resilient enough to do that.

  5. says

    I am sorry to hear of your family’s loss…but amazing things happen if you slow down and let them. I am just returning to my life – as I knew it before November 22, 2009 – the day I was diagnosed with leukemia…the 2 years that followed were filled with treatments and tough days which included at stem cell transplant. During those days I felt I would never get “my life back” – but with some patience and perseverance I have made it finally. I met many amazing people, all fighting for the same thing – some of them made it and some didn’t. And they all left an imprint on my life and how I live it now.

    How great that your husband had a chance to be more involved in the day to day lives of his children – that is an amazing gift to both him and them.

  6. says

    I got laid off when I was 5-months pregnant with my first daughter. It was definitely a blessing in disguise as I was able to rest more in the final days of the pregnancy and it took another 6 months to land a job after she was born. Which meant I got to spend the precious time being a stay at home mom. I had to go back to work when my second daughter was only 2 months old and I do feel I am missing out on precious time with her because of it. But I’m also thankful I have a job that helps support my family in a way that will allow us to take family vacations in the future.

  7. says

    This is so true, we need to learn quicker to enjoy the ride. Like the old saying make lemon aide out of lemons. We have had detours in our life so many times, it’s how we handle it that makes all the difference! Sounds like you have a great attitude and great kids. Loved your story. Right now we are stopped because the roads are closed, blizzard conditions.
    Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile

  8. Nicole Stone says

    I love that…a detour! You really have a great outlook on life, and that is one of the main reasons I follow your blog. I am sorry for your loss, but so happy to hear that you find comfort in knowing that she is Home, and with her sweetheart again!

  9. Lyndee says

    All my kids are in school so a year-and-a-half ago I decided to go for a 2nd Bachelors in Elementary Education. My husband is a professor and I was able to take a lot of the classes for free. Last December, my husband’s contract was not renewed. While this was a stressful thought, we had hope. I am student teaching this semester. So now we can follow my dream and go where I get a job. It’s exciting because I am planning on leaving the west and heading to New York or Vermont, an area of the country I love dearly. For the first time in a long time, I am excited!

  10. Jusa says

    I can relate to your sons’ reactions. My family traveled a third of the way across the country every summer to visit relatives. I always wished we could take the time to visit places along the way, but we never did. I can’t tell you how much I hated those two-days out and two-days back trips, six of us crammed in a sedan with no AC. Best souvenirs we could boast of were some magnetic scotties from the rest stop. Your approach was a variation on the glass half empty, glass half full philosophy and you had the wisdom to take advantage of it.

  11. says

    Having an emergency C-section at 7 months gestation of a 2 lb. 10 oz. daughter was NOT in the plan. But she was so strong and so full of life, she pulled herself off the respirator at 5 hours old. They never replaced it, just gave her an I.V. of one of the asthma meds I’d taken the whole pregnancy. She just turned 29 Saturday. Nor was it our plan for our second child, a boy, to have autism. But he does; he’s 27 now. Both pretty significant detours but without them our lives would not have had a lot of learning and great experiences (along with some not-so-great) that have made up our last 30 years.

  12. says

    Oh, what you remind me now!! Well, my first detour was about 9 years ago when me and my husband went to German to buy a new bus. My husband own a city bus and that period he had to buy a new one. It was our first time that we were travelling abroad. The man that sold us the bus made us a diagram with the roads that we had to pass so that to go to Italy. We had no idea where we were going and the detour didn’t late to come. You cannot do a lot of things in a country that you don’t know, with a bus that is not easy to move everywhere and a husband awake and driving for 12 hours non-stop.
    Thanks God I know to speak german so I asked for help and after 1 hour we finally found our way. End good, everything good, right?

  13. says

    I’m sorry about your families loss, but I love that you’re looking at the bright side of it which is that she is reunited with her husband. That’s such a nice way to look at it.

    My life has been so full of detours lately that it’s a wonder I get anywhere. I lost my husband to cancer last October and since then I’ve just decided to see where life takes me. It’s been an interesting journey so far, full of detours, but full of some wonderful stories as well. It fits into the whole idea that everything happens for a reason, the good and the bad.