Vacation Journal 2013: Our Two-Week Vacation Out West

We’ve been back a week from our vacation to Idaho and Montana, and I am forcing myself to get serious about posting about it. It’s been a bit of a wild ride since we returned home — adjusting to our Eastern time zone again, dealing with a heat wave, and finding out Carson came down with a serious infection in a bug bite on our trip and treating him ASAP. Fortunately, all is well here now — Carson is on the mend thanks to some strong antibiotics and lots of baths — and we’re enjoying beautiful weather in the high 70s/low 80s.


One of the advantages to my new stay-at-home-mom gig is that we no longer have to save work-alloted vacation days for child sick days in the winter. Therefore, this year, to commemorate our new family lifestyle, we decided to take a two-week trip West to visit my family. About twelve years ago I moved east to attend college and never made it back, though I often miss it terribly. So a long trip to see family and the landscape I love feels like I have died and gone to heaven!


We began our trip in Boise, where we celebrated the Fourth of July with a pancake breakfast, parade, water balloon fight, and barbecue. The kids weren’t big fans of the fireworks, so we called the night pretty early.


On July 5, we made our way up to Missoula by way of Idaho and Montana highways. The trip went as well as expected, considering we were traveling for eight-plus hours on winding roads with a minivan, which really seems to have a weird center of balance (even I, as the driver for most of the trip) got a little carsick. The views were spectacular, particularly through the Lochsa River.


In Missoula, my brother and his spectacular girlfriend showed us some kid-friendly sites, including a crazy-fast carousel, a few local breweries, and a nice nature trail. We also enjoyed the Big Dipper — one of my favorite ice cream joints in all the land — and spent time at the hotel pool (where my parents stayed). It was so fun to be in Missoula again and expose our kids to the magic of a smallish Western city. The Montana skies were so rejuvenating for me too — I loved the miles of blue sky with the beautiful mountains. Ahh, can’t wait for our next trip to that great state — hopefully with a trip to a national park and a view of the Northern Lights. Always good to have new travel goals!


Our time in Boise was also spectacular. It was nice and low-key, with many nights spent in my parents’ backyard enjoying adult beverages and watching the kids play in the kid pool or with other fun outdoor toys. Steve and I did manage to sneak away to a play, which was a huge thrill for us. Other highlights of the trip included golf dates, party planning, delicious meals, and a swimming day at one of my favorite swimming spots in Boise, Sandy Point.


My favorite takeaways from the trip include the experiences I shared with my kids, the awesome Idaho weather, and seeing my husband enjoy himself. It’s such a thrill to show my kids where I grew up and take them to beloved places that I enjoyed as a kid. I also love the desert heat climate — no humidity! — and think I could spend the whole summer in that weather every single year. And, seeing my husband relax and enjoy some R & R makes me want to book next year’s trip out to my home state as quickly as possible.


I am so grateful to my family for making our trip possible and for helping with our kids for those two weeks. Having eight sets of adult hands to tend to two children is really amazing! Already counting down to next year.


1 thought on “Vacation Journal 2013: Our Two-Week Vacation Out West”

  1. I love seeing some photos from your trip, especially with you in them, Beautiful! And it’s wonderful to know that Steve enjoyed it, too. Yay for the 4-to-1 ratio and adult beverages!

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