Life is a Highway

highwayWhen we first got in the car to start our cross-country roadtrip, my daughter turned to me and said, “You know what song we should listen to? Life is a Highway by Rascal Flatts.”

It took 567.2 miles and 8 hours 52 minutes of driving (not that we’re counting) for her to get her wish—on I-80, going through Archbold, Ohio, in a construction zone, one of many, let me tell you.

“Roll down the window, Mom!” My daughter said. She sang joyfully at the top of her lungs while car-dancing to the song that by title alone could be our roadtrip anthem.

It was a highlight moment of the day, but there were many to choose from, just to name a few: the Great Blue Heron that flew parallel and eye-level with our car so we could clearly see its feathers ruffling in the breeze, the horrified look on my daughter’s face when I sang along with The Bee Gees’ More than a Woman, the woman in Ohio who derisively proclaimed “only in Ohio” would a highway-side Dairy Queen be out of strawberry milkshakes (maybe you had to be there?), not to mention the sheer excitement of crossing each state line. We also had one close call (“knock on wood,” as we say in our family), when the car directly in front of us blew out a tire going 70 mph and skidded off the road. It was very fortunate that the driver knew how to handle the car after the blow out, and that the tire landed where I was easily able to avoid hitting it. I was also lucky that I wasn’t distracted (at that moment) by my phone, my coffee, or anything else; that my attention was firmly on the road—as it should always be—it served as an excellent reminder.

Yesterday we left Pennsylvania and drove through Ohio and Indiana before stopping for the night just north of Chicago where we stayed the night with one of my daughter’s best friends who just graduated with her. Her parents were lovely and gracious enough to take us in for the night, as they might family, despite having just returned from graduation themselves. A heartfelt thank you!

Today it’s on to the great American plains. We’re heading toward Colorado (where we lived when both our kids were born) to see some of our very best friends. I can’t wait!




  1. Ha … laughing hysterically at your description of singing More than a Woman (as you know, the Bee Gees are my favorite band EVER). The blue heron incident … breathtaking (and I might be a wee-bit jealous). Sounds like you’re having fun and that you’ve got THE best car-mate a mama could ask for! (And now, reminded of highway driving, I’m singing the Eagles Song, “Life in the Fast Lane” – another of your potential theme songs).

  2. I LOVE that song! When I saw your title to this post on Twitter I immediately started singing it in my mind. It really is the perfect road trip song, and I’m so glad you caught in on the radio to create such a wonderful memory.

    SO happy to hear that you’re enjoying the trip and staying safe!

  3. shary says:

    Great road trip song! I made myself a playlist of all of my sing along favorites for road trips and when I get tired of driving, I play it and sing to perk myself up. I can just see the two of you singing together. Fabulous!

  4. Nancy Kelley says:

    This sounds like a brilliant beginning to your road trip. Seriously, only in Ohio would a DQ be out of strawberry milkshakes! (I don’t have to be there to see the humor.)

    Keep the updates and pictures coming, Julia!

  5. Love it! Life is a Highway was the first track on the “driving music” CD I made for our last big road trip. 🙂 Glad you’ve had a good, safe trip so far. Too bad you aren’t coming all the way out to the west coast!

  6. Nina says:

    Love it! And love hearing about the earliest part of the trip.