Our BIG (slightly unexpected) summer trip! Part 1

This year we hadn’t planned on going on vacation, but when Grandma calls you to announce that she is getting married, you gotta go!

We decided to make the trip to Montana a vacation, which turned into a BIG vacation!  It started out with the idea of visiting  Yellowstone while we were in the area.  Then it turned into a trip to CO to see Pikes Peak.  Then we figured we better do something in WY along the way…oh yeah and look, Adventures in Odyssey is in Colorado Springs…and we figured we better go to Palo Duro Canyon when we drove through that part of Texas.

So we were set, we were going to visit Yellowstone, Colorado, Wyoming, and Palo Duro Canyon.  Then one night, as we were discussing the trip, Jack came out of his room to ask me a question.  He asked why we couldn’t go to Mount Rushmore.  He had recently read a book about it and wanted to go.  I didn’t have an answer for him.  Why couldn’t we go there?  And then the whole trip changed.

Once we realized we’d be driving through Dallas we had to stop by Trader Joe’s, then we had to drive through Kansas to see friend’s that we hadn’t seen in 3 years, and while we were in the area we had to see the largest ball of twine, and the center most point of the USA.  And Carhenge, we had to see Carhenge.  Then we’d head to Mount Rushmore and oh yeah, the wedding, then we’d go to the wedding.

After the wedding we were going to go to Yellowstone, then Wyoming to swing by the Buffalo Bill museum, and then we were going to Colorado.  While in Colorado we would head to Garden of the Gods, Adventures in Odyssey, and Pike’s Peak if we had time.  On the way back home we were going to stop in at Palo Duro Canyon and eat dinner at the Big Texan.  That my friends, is how you have a big vacation.  And.it.was.big.








While we visited each National Park the kids earned their Jr. Ranger Badge.  If you ever get the chance to visit a National Park I highly recommend looking into this program, it is neat!



We made it to Billings MT!


Vincent was my assistant photographer!



{when he wasn’t socializing with his new aunt!}


We attended Grandma’s wedding.



We hung around Billings for a few days…





And we spent time influencing the cousins to be silly…



And then we were on the road again, this time we headed to Yellowstone!


Snowball fight in the mountains… check!



breathtaking views… check!



meltdown from kiddos as we stop for another photo….check!



van breakdown in the only town within 2 hours…check!

– don’t worry, it was only a dead battery!  We had to stop for an ice cream break anyway.



We finally made it!


So the first thing we did is hike on one of the hardest trails…

Uncle Tom’s!



See a bear from a safe distance….check!



We mingled with the natives…



We checked out some of the hot spots around the area.



We dipped our feet in the Yellowstone River.



We explored the Yellowstone Inn.




And we hiked a little more…


And one more badge to earn..


Then it was time to saw good bye to Yellowstone!



Big Vacation PART 2 coming soon!


Updated: June 30, 2013 — 8:54 pm
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