Spain + France 2019/20 // part one

Buckle up friends. It has taken me over a month to share photos and stories from our trip abroad for the holidays. Mostly because it might’ve been one of the worst trips that I’ve experienced to date. Don’t get me wrong, there were a few good things, but on the whole, things didn’t go as planned. Let’s do this…

We woke up on Christmas morning and hit the road to drive to Chicago to catch our flight to Amsterdam, en route to Barcelona. We had spent Christmas Eve with my family and on our drive home Fitzie puked in the car. Not good. We got him home, cleaned up and tucked into bed, and went to sleep hoping for the best.

Next morning, they woke up feeling great and excited to see their gifts from Santa. We set out for our drive to Chicago around 8:30AM.


There were no hiccups during the drive and we made our way to O’Hare and settled into a lounge to wait for our flight.Bacquiera2019_10Bacquiera2019_11Bacquiera2019_02Bacquiera2019_03Bacquiera2019_12Bacquiera2019_13

We boarded and took off without a hitch, en route to Amsterdam. About a few hours into the flight, just as we were almost out over the ocean, I happened to be watching our flight tracker and it just changed. We dropped speed and started to turn. We were now heading for Bangor, Maine for a medical emergency. I should’ve known that this would be an omen for the rest of the trip.Bacquiera2019_14

Due to the rerouting, we missed our connecting flight to Barcelona and were rebooked on a flight that we literally had to run to after we made it through customs. The rest of the family traveling with us had it worse, because they were booked on a new flight that took them through Madrid, to get to Barcelona. We were meeting up with the rest of the family who had traveled via Paris from Beijing. With the quick turnaround of our flights, our luggage didn’t make it, and would be arriving later that night.

Eight of us left the airport, and two stayed behind to collect our luggage and the other family when they arrived. We loaded into our van and started our four hour drive north into the Pyrenees mountains: destination Baqueira.Bacquiera2019_15

The route was windy and pretty terrifying. I was just happy that by the time we got there it was dark. If that wasn’t enough, the apartment we rented was tougher to get into than Fort Knox. Upon arrival, we realized no one had eaten, so Marcus and I headed out to grab some dinner to bring back for everyone. We found NHAC Restaurant and enjoyed a much deserved glass of cava. Bacquiera2019_16

After a rough start, waking up the following morning to this view made things feel like they were on the up and up.Bacquiera2019_24Bacquiera2019_25
As the crew of skiers hit the slopes (and ski school), the few of us non-participants set out in search of breakfast, groceries and most importantly, COFFEE!Bacquiera2019_17Bacquiera2019_18

After we had a little something to eat, and caffeine pumping through our veins, we headed out to explore the town. Bacquiera2019_19Bacquiera2019_20Bacquiera2019_21Bacquiera2019_22

While we played and enjoyed lunch, the skiers joined the masses (this is high season for this ski resort). This was Everett’s first time on skis and he did great, after he figured things out. Bacquiera2019_27Bacquiera2019_23Bacquiera2019_26Bacquiera2019_33Bacquiera2019_34Bacquiera2019_04

After a nice little siesta, we enjoyed lighting a fire and hanging out before our dinner at Restaurante La Borda Lobató by Ron Barceló. One thing that is definitely different in Spain, is how late people eat dinner. With young kids, that was a tough one for us. We got the kids in their matching jammies and made our way to our 9:30PM (!) reservation.Bacquiera2019_30Bacquiera2019_32Bacquiera2019_41

The dinner was delicious, but man, I struggled eating so late. And so did the kiddos who were all tired out from a day on the slopes.


The next morning, the skiers took off again, and I had grand plans to drive to the neighboring country of Andorra with a few others. Well, long story short, we left town in the opposite direction of where we needed to be going. So instead of experiencing Andorra, we visited the quaint local town of Arties.Bacquiera2019_35Bacquiera2019_36Bacquiera2019_37Bacquiera2019_39Bacquiera2019_40

After another siesta, we got dressed up and hired a babysitter so that we could have a night out to ourselves. Bacquiera2019_42Bacquiera2019_43

The following morning we headed out for Montgarri Outdoor to do a little dogsledding. This was definitely one of the highlights of the trip for me. The four of us were bundled up and loaded onto the sled with 10 pups in front of us and an amazing guide behind us. The views were breathtaking and it was just so beautiful. Bacquiera2019_45Bacquiera2019_84Bacquiera2019_85Bacquiera2019_47Bacquiera2019_49Bacquiera2019_54Bacquiera2019_56Bacquiera2019_57Bacquiera2019_66Bacquiera2019_68Bacquiera2019_75Bacquiera2019_76Bacquiera2019_77Bacquiera2019_82

After we got back to the hotel, we decided to just hang around our apartment for the rest of the day. Enjoying meats, cheeses, football, Pringles and pajama time.
Bacquiera2019_83Bacquiera2019_88Bacquiera2019_89But it was now time to pack up because the next morning we would be off on our journey north across the border to explore Bordeaux.

About tomorrowstodos

To-Do lists: I love the feeling of putting a check mark in a box.
This entry was posted in Family, Travel and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Spain + France 2019/20 // part one

  1. Kevin Johnson says:

    Just getting around to seeing pix and reading Nicole’s stories… wow, what a trip. Sorry it didn’t go fully as planned. 2-9-’20

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s