"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." ~e e cummings

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Thank you, Montana

Three small children, who behave wonderfully on planes, for a combined total of 13 hours (not including 7 hours in the car to and from airports) on two different days over the course of a week, including one two-hour stretch of sitting, delayed, on the tarmac....are amazing.

Thank you, you incredible little travelers of mine.


[I will ignore, for now and for always, the unbelievable meltdown of my 4-year old, which occurred in baggage claim upon our return. It was, after all, midnight and he hadn't after all, since a 9am nap, slept.]

A large, far-flung family, who makes time and takes the time to be together whenever possible, is pretty amazing, too.

Thank you, my family.

Uncle Matt and his Cobra Cast
Deep conversations with Uncle Will

Cousins in a hot tub, watching over a game of corn hole being played in the yard below.
But the star of this show was Big Sky.
Thank you, Montana.

For the cabin we stayed in...

An early morning in the yard of our cabin.


[the details, artwork, craftsmanship of this cabin were amazing]


played in...

Their own climbing wall in the backyard.
slept in...

It's a real, live Berenstain Bears bed!
...and woke to...

[views from our porch]

It was perfect.

Thank you, Montana, for Whitefish Lake.
I am in love with the Montana rocks that line the bottom of all the lakes.


[Don't tell anyone, but I took some home with me. A lot, actually. I had to throw away my sunscreen and my shampoo bottles so I could meet the 50lb. weight requirement.]


Dam Builders



And for the sandy shores of City Beach, around the bend of the lake...


Thank you, Wildlife of Montana, who quietly put on a show for us...the many deer who visited our cabin each evening, the marmots and the ground squirrels who ran underfoot, the bald eagle who sat patiently while we all grabbed our phones...



...and the bison we saw, but couldn't capture on film, from the car window.
Sam hoped to see a black bear. I wasn't disappointed that we didn't.

Thank you, Lion Mountain for providing a hike that our big group could handle...



...with a spectacular payoff at the top of the climb.



the cutest little hikers ever

Thank you, Sweet Peaks ice cream shop, for being just a few blocks away from our cabin.
Because, even if your cones are tricky for a two-year old...


The effort was worth it. 


Twice.

Thank you, Glacier National Park, for taking my breath away with your beauty.









And thank you, I guess, to Going-to-the-Sun Road, for literally taking my breath away as we hugged the edge of the mountain, 1000s of feet in the air, with a low, old, stone wall as our only protection against certain death. I couldn't properly inhale for the entire drive up to Logan Pass....but, again, it was worth the climb.




Thank you, Big Mountain, and the investors that have transformed your ski slopes into a year-round adventure park. We had an amazing time coasting down your alpine slide and
fearlessly riding your chair lifts...

Okay, Sam and the boys were fearless. Molly, too. I was white-knuckling it all the way up, marveling at the Camp Kids who were there, hopping on and off like they were on a swingset, instead of 100ft up in the air WITHOUT SEATBELTS.
But once we reached the top, the views, though smoky from the Washington State wildfires....
were spectacular.



And the trip down in the (fully-enclosed) gondala was just my speed.



My favorite little mountain kids.
Montana, you're beautiful.

Lesson Learned:
I'm already planning our return trip. We love you, Montana. 
And we love you, too, Matt and Megan! Thanks for putting your roots in Big Sky country, so we'll keep having a reason to visit. Can't wait until Baby Leo joins us on our next adventure!