One of my claims to fame is that I’ve been to all fifty states. Between moving around every few years as a kid, plus visiting family for vacations, and both my parents’ bent toward travel (and later my own), it wasn’t too hard to see all the states, especially the contiguous 48. My grandfather lived in Maine, so we got that corner. We drove from Wisconsin to Florida once, so there was that. Tons of trips to California, one big one to the northwest, moving back and forth across the country, etc.

At one point, I’d gotten to 46 states. The remaining ones were Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, and Alabama. Alabama was visited during a road trip from Colorado to Georgia, I think, but Louisiana was just a bit too short to be on the route. So the next time we drove that route, we took a detour across northern Louisiana. There. I’d been to all 48 contiguous states.

But not Alaska and Hawaii!

Those were harder to get to, and would take more time and expense. So it wasn’t until Rory and I went on a cruise in 2014 that I got to Alaska. Then we wanted a big family trip before my older kid started college (because with homeschooling we were never tied down to a school schedule, but would be once she started college classes), so we did a cruise to Hawaii in 2016.

And, with that, I’d been to all fifty states.

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