Tuesday, July 29, 2014

4th of July

We celebrated America's birthday this year by taking a relaxing 31+ hour drive with a five-month-old to visit my girlfriend Kendra and her husband and their sweet baby girl in Missoula, MT. Because grilling hot dogs and watching fireworks just seemed boring.

The decision to drive was entirely Jordan's choice, as it's (yes) a gorgeous drive and thought we could make a long trip out of it and go through the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Park, but omg, Jordan - 31 hours, baby in back...seriously?

Yes, seriously.

It wasn't bad at all, though. Syd roadtripped like a boss and did SO well, and I need to start giving her more credit for being such a cool baby. Thanks, Syd!! You're the best.

We drove northwest to Jackson, WY and stayed the night at this adorable little boutique hotel - I don't even remember what the name was (Jordan?), but it was really cute and had a really tasty little complimentary breakfast the next morning. We went into town and grabbed coffee at a local coffee shop (which was adorable), and everything about Jackson was...you guessed it...adorable. I hadn't been to Jackson since my family took a vacation there YEARS ago, but now I really want to go back, snowboard the mountain, and visit all of Jackson's adorable little places.

 Passing the world's biggest buffalo (it's fake unbeknownst to my Instagram followers)

Outside of the coffee shop #adorable

We drove through Grand Teton National Park and then through Yellowstone National Park, stopping to take pics of the beautiful scenery and tourist attractions. I forgot how much I love the west!

Grand Tetons

Sleepy Syd missing all the gorgeous views (but those lashes!)

 Jenny Lake - Grand Teton National Park

Jenny Lake

Old Faithful about to erupt, and we were the only ones there!!

 Or not

Some random falls in Yellowstone

We finally reached Bozeman, MT in the early evening and had a delicious dinner at Montana Ale Works, where Jordan and his Flatlander buddies have gone to dinner a few times. The next morning we had breakfast at the very definition of a hole-in-a-wall establishment, where evidently the boys go first thing when they reach Bozeman called Soby's (I'm literally so surprised they even have a website).

Side note - have I fully described what Jordan's Flatlander trip is? It's an annual trip that started nine years ago when Jordan was still in MN; him and a bunch of his buddies take an RV and drive out to Montana. They stay in Bozeman at one of the guys' grandparents' house for a few days and ski at Bridger and then drive down to Big Sky and ski there for a few days before taking the RV back to MN. It's an awesome tradition, but I will fully admit I had some choice words for my husband when he informed me he was still going to go on Flatlander last year when Sydney would only be 2-4 weeks old.

Anyway, after my interesting breakfast at Soby's, we visited Jordan's friend Jason's grandparents (who the boys stay with). His grandma was gone, but we caught up with his grandpa, who lived up to every expectation I had from all the years of hearing about him. He was so sweet, very loving, hilarious, sharp as a tack and an awesome storyteller. He even told Syd some Swedish and German nursery rhymes! She was enthralled and had a blast with him.

 Of course, she missed all of dinner...

Classy decor

Meeting the legendary Limerick

Listening to some Swedish and German nursery rhymes

We made it to Missoula in the late morning, and it was so fun to finally introduce Sydney and Samantha to each other. They were SO cute, and it's really hard to believe Kendra and I have been friends for over 25 years and had baby girls only one week apart. Crazy!

We stayed in Missoula for the night before heading up to their cabin the next morning, where we hung out, ate, drank, played Euchre and played with babies for the next couple of days.

Sydney is slowly but surely becoming a daddy's girl 

Evidently there's good surfing in Missoula...who knew? 

 That one time I wore a scarf the American Flag as an old woman's shawl


Cabin views - amazing!!!

Black sand dunes at Old Works Golf Course

First boat ride!! Syd was NOT A FAN of her lifejacket. 

Thank you for the wonderful hospitality, Kendra, Scott & Samantha!! We had a wonderful time and can't wait to see you guys soon!

Jordan's idea to drive was completely validated on the drive home when we saw a mama moose walking with her two baby moose. Of course, I was gawking and wasn't ready with my camera, so I only caught the mama's moose's butt walking into the brush, but it was so awesome to see. We also saw a bunch of deer/elk AND a bunch of collie puppies. So, in my opinion, driving was totally worth it.

Jordan got sick of driving, so Sydney took over.

(KIDDING...the car was completely parked, and we were resting at a gas station.)

Little peanut contently playing in her car seat 


Hope you all had a wonderful, safe and FUN 4th of July weekend!!

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