We decided to forge the 9 hour drive with the baby because a.) we miss Mark and Heather and Charlotte and Ruby and b.) we were pretty sure if we didn't do it now, we would never ever do it.
My MIL, Lori, came with us and her and Scott did most (okay, pretty much all) of the driving. She kept commenting on how the drive "isn't that bad" and how wonderful all the little towns were. And okay, I like small towns- but if you've seen one tiny town in Wyoming, you've seen them all and it really doesn't break up the miles and miles and miles of sagebrush in between haha!
This is why arriving in Gillette was such a breath of fresh air. That city is rich. Like, RICH. There is a coal mine there that keeps the rec center and the library awesome. Sure, they only have Wal-Mart, but they also have many free services and a $65,000/year per capita statistic.
I was thrilled when Heather and Mark gave us a tour of their new town and you could just tell how truly happy they were to be there. They have a cute house and cute kids and a job. I mean, what more could you ask for, right?
I am sad we did not get more pictures, but I was having fun. However, I was much to thrilled with the cousin bath that happened after swimming to not snap a few.
Scott and I had never hung out with just Mark and Heather before (weird) and we were excited. I did feel bad though because EVERYONE who goes to visit them asks to go to Mount Rushmore and they had been there 3 times in 2 months. Whoops.
We were going to go see the Needles, but the roads were super curvy and Heather and I were car-sick. I think we got lost a little too and we decided to just go home. My favorite part, though, was driving through a small rock tunnel only to come out and see a distant Mount Rushmore peaking through the trees. It was so unexpected and cool!
Later, we had the girls play dress-up and paint their nails and put on lipstick. Georgia just had a ball with her cousins and I wish I was a photographer so I could have captured the cuteness of "playing princess."
|This pose happened when I said: "get together for a picture" ... nerds.|
The whole trip was a huge breath of fresh air and I am finding myself to be more productive than ever now that I am home. That is how I know the trip was a success- I feel refreshed and motivated instead of sad and sluggish.
But I'm done with traveling for a while, I swear. We have been beyond blessed this summer to have gone on so many amazing trips. In May, I was sure we weren't going to be going anywhere, and by Labor Day we had swam in both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, road-tripped a total of 51 hours, flown on two airplanes, and seen a gigantic statue of Abraham Lincoln in two places on opposite sides of the country.
Blessed does not begin to describe it.
What a pleasantly unexpected summer!