Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Blog Fail/Summer Vacation!

I twitter, I Facebook, sometimes I even email, text or (gasp) pick up the phone! What I haven't been doing is blogging... obviously. Sorry. We had a WONDERFUL vacation in July. Two weeks on the road. Just Blaine, Brandon and me. Some people wondered why we'd choose to spend so much time in the car. Let me tell you, it was the best bonding experience we've ever had as a family. This vacation rivaled any of our Hawaiian trips, Disneyland, San Diego. It was the perfect mix of camping, hotels, staying with our wonderful cousins and then camping with them. I apologize in advance for not including all the photos I'd like (esp. of our Colorado family. As I blog this, I only have access to a small portion of our vacation photos).

Our itinerary looked like this:

First night: Drove to Spokane, stayed in a hotel

First full day: Drove all the way to Yellowstone and arrived after dark because we missed a turn in the park and took the scenic route all the way around the park. Oh well!

First three days: Camped in Yellowstone. Amazing experience. Saw so much more than I could possibly post. Wild animals, beautiful scenery, geysers, streams, waterfalls, more wildlife. At one point, the three of us pulled over, took off our shoes and just sat on a river bank, soaking our feet. Not a soul around for miles. It was incredible.

Off to Colorado: Via a night spent in Casper, WY. Interesting place. Visited my first Walmart. 'nuff said.

Arrived in Colorado: Spent two nights with our fabulous cousins in Erie (near Denver/Boulder). They showed us Rocky Mtn National Park, among other things. Probably one of the most beautiful places in the country! Climbed around at 14,000 ft elevation, saw the Stanley Hotel (Stephen King fans will know what that means).

Steamboat Springs/Steamboat Lake: Traveled here with our cousins (Julianne, Jim and the boys - Forest and Harrison). Spent a wonderful day with Julianne's mom (my dad's cousin) and and Poppa Russ at their ranch. It is here that Brandon earned the nickname "shooter" for his newly discovered target shooting abilities. Hmmm. From here we traveled to Steamboat Lake and camped for two nights. I have to say, Jim is the BEST. CAMPING COOK. EVER. Can we always take him with us camping? The dude's amazing in the 'kitchen.' They also rented a boat and we spent a nice day on the lake, catching big, beautiful trout.

Jackson Hole: It was hard to say goodbye to Colorado and our family, but we headed off to Jackson Hole and stayed at a nice little cabin on a creek. We visited the town, took the gondola up to the top of the mountain and watched hangliders literally jump off the mountain. Amazing! Of course, Brandon remembers the 'bungie trampoline' more than anything. Kid has no fear.

Teton National Park: And we thought Yellowstone was beautiful. Freakin' incredible. Just incredible.

Big Sky Montana: Pretty cool. We were winding down at this point. Almost at the two week mark and we decided to cancel our Glacier National Park camping and head home a bit early. We'll do Glacier another time.