Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Wyoming Vacation Day 7 - Boys At Yellowstone & Girls Shopping!

 When we first got to Aunt Linda's I started talking to Pa about possibly taking 2 of the boys to Yellowstone National Park. I knew he'd love the drive and I thought it would be good to get a couple of the kids out of the house to have a change of scenery. In the end it actually ended up being all 3 boys....I wasn't sure if they would all fit in the back of Dad's car, but they did. Uncle Lee also decided to go so it was a boys road trip!

 All the boys ready to head out!

All strapped in! 

This is were the ugliness of real life comes into play. At first Owen did not want to go because he wanted to stay at the house and go on his Kindle. I was absolutely shocked that he would want to skip seeing Yellowstone National Park and just stare at a screen all day instead. I know my child and I know that he's addicted to electronics...that's why we have boundaries set at home to keep this in check. I just couldn't believe that he would be okay with missing out on the beauty and the exploration that he could experience. Since I was so shocked I decided right then that he would lose out on using his Kindle for the rest of the trip. According to Michael I'm black and white....all or nothing!

These pictures were taken at the Buffalo Bill Dam.

It's not that far outside of Cody...which of course was founded by Buffalo Bill!

According to Wikipedia it's 325 ft high!!!

Here they are at Lake Yellowstone! Talk about a gorgeous day! With all the fires we've had so much smoke covering the sky this summer it seems like months since I've seen blue sky!!!

Pa had Owen and Jack race up this hill and Owen ran fast and got to the crest of the hill and then stopped thinking he'd won, but then Jack came up and kept on running to the very top and won!!! Good going Jackson!!!

So beautiful!!!

These were the boiling mud pots!

The boys said they would die if they fell in! Yes....yes you would! 

This particular area looks like Dragon's mouth.....I just looked it up and I was right. I had remembered taking the kids to this spot back in 2012.

Pa with his Zeke man!

Sadly they did not actually see that many animals. I don't know if it was because of the heat or if it was the time of year....gearing up for rut season or not, but there just weren't that many buffalo to be found! 

Next stop was Old Faithful!

Waiting with Uncle Lee for the geyser to blow!!!

Not super close to the actual geyser, but being away from the crowds is nice!!!

Plus there was shade!!!

Here is goes!!!

 It's always fun to see water shoot out of a hole!!! :) :) :)

Next up was the inside of the Old Faithful Inn.  

I think the boys were trying to give each other bunny ears here!!! 

Pa with his G-Boys! 

After visiting the Inn they headed out for a walk on the pathways near by. Of course they got all the way over there and then Zeke needed to use the restroom. By the time they had done that the boys were ready to go. They tried to get into the Canyon area of the park, but it was SO crowded they couldn't even get off the main hwy to get there. There were a few other hiccups during their trip like the boys not eating their lunch and then Pa buying them dessert and then later they got more treats so on the way home Pa had to pull over because Jack thought he was going to puke! And of course the boys aren't used to being within touching distance when in a vehicle so that caused all sorts of issues as you can imagine. All in all though I think they had fun! 

So what did us girls do???? Well at first I just wanted to go to a nail salon in town so Ella and I could get our nails done. But then Aunt Linda came out from her room and said...."We should to go Billings!" Billings, MT is only one and a half hours away from Cody, WY. I thought that it sounded like a great idea!!!

Aunt Linda drove us in her lovely SUV. Of course Ella had to bring Charlotte with us! The first place we went was Olive Garden for lunch. I LOVE Olive Garden and Michael hates it so it was so nice getting to go. After that we headed to Rimrock Mall in search of some sort of collar for Charlotte. Aunt Linda gave Ella $5 to spend. We went to Claire's and were able to find a pretty wrap around headband with roses on it that would work and the best part was it was only $4!!! After that we went wandering around the mall. Aunt Linda needed to buy a baby gift for a friend so we went into JCPenny's. While we were in there Ella and I needed to go to the bathroom. The bathroom was located right next to the salon. When we got out Ga-Ga & Aunt Linda had talked to them and found out they did nails at the salon. Ella and i only had to wait about 5 minutes before it was our turn.

The guy that did our nails was a hoot! Super fun to talk to and he just adored Ella!!! 

She chose pink and purple gel nails and she even got glitter on some of them. The guy didn't know how long gel nails would last on a child, but I knew that it would last longer than normal polish. It ended up lasting a full week and then it just peeled right off. 

This is blurry, but it shows my nails. I got this deep purple color and he put the same glitter on my ring finger nail that he put on Ella's. She loved that we were twinsies! My nails last 2 weeks, but I think they would have lasted longer normally. Let's just say that canning and gel nails do not go well together.

The rest of our time in Billings was spent shopping. Ga-Ga bought all the kids new shoes for school at Payless. She actually bought Ella two shoes and booties. She got Owen a pair of boots that are so cool looking and they were on clearance for $10. She got Zeke & Jack new tennis shoes as well. Jack's are Velcro and he's all about tie shoes now so we are going to exchange his soon. Once we left the mall we went to Target to get Ella leggings. I got all the kids back to school clothes at Value Village over the summer, but leggings are not something you buy from VV. Target's Cat & Jack leggings are the best fit for Ella. Ella totally scored and Ga-Ga bought her 8 pairs of leggings, 1 dress and 2 shirts. Plus she got Cat & Jack headbands and a new purse! We also found a backpack for Jack. After that we went to ShopKo to buy another pair of shoes for Owen. They had these super cool sneakers at the Payless in the mall, but they didn't have them in Owen's size. The lady called around and found them at ShopKo. They had put them on hold for me. I also ran back to the backpack area and found Zeke the perfect dinosaur bone backpack. It was a whole set that came with a water bottle, lunch box, pencil bag and a tablet holder. It was normal $36, but it was 50% off! Yahoo!!! 

We didn't ended up leaving Billings until close to 6pm! 

On our way back to Cody we stopped at the two cemeteries where my great grandparents on my mom's side are buried. When I was first driving to Aunt Linda's with just the kids, I drove past this one cemetery and I knew I had been there before. It's weird when you get that feeling? I asked Mom and she said that yes I had in fact been there before. The headstone above is for my Mom's Mom's parents. Grandpa & Grandma LaFurge. Great Grandpa LaFurge is where we got Zeke's middle name Russell! 

And this is my Mom's Dad's parents....Great Grandpa & Grandma Giest. If you click on the picture and look closely you see there wedding date is in the middle and it's listed as January 6th 1931. That's actually not correct. They were actually married on Dec 6th. Oops!!! It wasn't a mistake made by the people that make the headstone though it was made by Grandma herself! 

The boys were back by the time we got home and they were eager to see all the surprises we got! 

Zeke LOVES his new backpack and can't wait to use it when he goes to Kindergarten! 

Honestly this was probably my favorite day of the whole was so much fun getting to spend a whole day with my three favorite Mom, my Aunt and My precious girl!