Category Archives: Vacations

4th of July Weekend in Washington D.C.


This year, with the kids crazy summer schedules, we weren’t able to take a long summer trip, so we thought it would be fun to spend the 4th of July in D.C. celebrating at our nation’s capital.

Knowing how crowded the city can be for the fireworks, we stayed at a Hilton property close to the National Mall, so we wouldn’t have to walk to far afterward. Of course it’s located right behind the International Spy Museum and my oldest son was beside himself happy LOL. We packed in and saw as much as we could, even with long lines and crazy hot temperatures. We checked off a bucket list city, and I love our memories.

Here’s what we did:

  • We walked a lot.
  • In all major cities we buy tickets for Big Bus and ride around to see the sights. It gives us a good idea of the layout of the city along with interesting facts.
  • Listened to president Trump’s speech from the Lincoln Memorial, while watching the military planes fly over.
  • Celebrated the 4th of July fireworks on the National Mall.
  • We ate some amazing food from Momofuku, Old Ebbitt Grill, outside cafe at the Willard hotel, and down on the wharf.
  • We went to the Spy Museum, the Air & Space Museum, and the National Archives Museum to see the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.
  • We rode the night tour and saw the Jefferson Memorial, MLK Memorial, Roosevelt Memorial, Arlington Cemetery, and the Iwo Jima Memorial.
  • We rode little scooters all around the National Mall to visit some of sights: Washington Monument, Capital building, White house, Lincoln Memorial.
  • And we completed our trip with a baseball game with the Washington Nationals.

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Filed under 4th of July, Baseball, Bucket List, Fun Outings, Fun Stuff, Project Life 2019, Vacations

Bainbridge Island and The Great Wheel

Day two in Seattle…

Today, we took the ferry to Bainbridge Island where we walked around, snacked, and tasted wine. Afterward, we went to Pike’s Brewery and then The Great Wheel. For dinner we ate at Aqua on the water.

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Seattle Here We Come!

It’s day one of our summer 2018 family trip!!! Today, we flew to Seattle and explored the Space Needle and Pike’s Market Place. We’re staying at the Edgewater and today is just gorgeous!!!

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And Away We Go…

Today we are headed home from an amazing trip. It’s going to be a long day… but so worth it.


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Filed under Jackson Hole/Yellowstone 2017, Project Life 2017, Vacations

Cody – Buffalo Bill Museum and the Rodeo

Day 7! Today, we head out of Yellowstone and off to Cody, Wyoming.

Woo Hoo! On our way out, going toward the east entrance of the park, we FINALLY see a bear. And not just one bear, but TWO! Those were some pretty brown grizzlies next to the road.

Once we reached Cody, we stopped for some lunch at Millstone Pizza Company and Brewery. Andy and I tasted their flight, while the boys played in the arcade downstairs. Afterward we headed to the Buffalo Bill Museum. This museum was amazing. Whereas Matty liked it for about 30 minutes, Davy and I wandered through for about two hours.

We checked into the Best Western, let the boys swim, and then we headed off to Wyoming’s Rib and Chop house for a few steaks before making our way to the rodeo. Nothing says 4th of July weekend like a good old western rodeo with fireworks LOL. We stayed for about half of the show, the boys were exhausted. We missed the bulls, but we got to watch the bucking broncos.



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Yellowstone Lake, Lake Village Day Hikes, Mud Volcanoes

Day 6! And boy did it start off cold! 37 degrees.

It’s boating and hiking day.

Our first stop is to Tower Fall. We had planned on hiking around this waterfall, but the trail was closed. So, we took a few pictures and then headed on down to Lake Village/Bay Bridge where we decided to take the chartered boat around the lake. The lake has 120 miles of shoreline and is the largest body of water in the park. We learned all kinds of interesting facts, one being there used to be a zoo on Stevenson Island. For lunch we stopped at the Lake Village Lodge and there we picked our two hikes: Elephant Back and Storm Pass.

Elephant Back – this is a 3.5 mile round trip hike that is considered moderately strenuous. It climbs over 800 feet and we felt like we were going straight up. We were thankful for our BoyScout who packed us all a water, and we were even more thankful for the view. It was beautiful.

Storm Point – this is a 2.3 mile round trip hike and is considered easy. Here you pass through open meadow, Indian Pond, Lake Yellowstone shoreline, and Storm Point forest. I think all these photos speak for themselves.

Our last stop of the day was the mud volcanoes. A .6 mile loop trail that passes by some of the smelliest gas filled sulphur springs.





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Mammoth Hot Springs, Bozeman Montana, and West Yellowstone

Day 5!

Today, we decided to head north. For our morning hike we went to Tower Fall. There’s a tenth of a mile overlook to the falls, or a 1-mile round trip hike to the base of the falls and back up. Of course we hiked to the bottom.

Next, we drove up to Mammoth Hot Springs. There is a hiking observation deck around them, but the parking lot was full, so we drove through the driving path to see the springs.

For the rest of the day, we decided to drive through southern Montana, over to Bozeman for lunch. We stopped at a pizza place, and White Dog Brewery. As we have a no electronic rule when driving through National Parks, the kids were pumped for screen time. We picked up a few six packs and then drove south ninety miles through Gallatin National Forest to get to West Yellowstone.

In West Yellowstone, we stopped at a ropes course for the kids to stretch their legs and play, we drove to Idaho to check another state off their list, and we ate bison burgers at the Slippery Otter Pub.


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Off To Yellowstone We Go!!!

Day 4! And we’re on our way…

Today, we leave Jackson Hole and head to Yellowstone National Park. On our way we grab some bagels and fruit, stop back in Teton National Park to drive up next to the Teton’s and visit the Chapel of the Transfiguration. We were told that this little chapel has the most gorgeous view, and they were not wrong. It is a log cabin, built in 1925 and is owned and operated by St. John’s Episcopal Church in Jackson. We stopped for a small hike to see Jackson Lake, and then we headed north.

Our first stop in Yellowstone was to see Old Faithful. It’s here we watched the famous geyser and had lunch. Next, we drove to Midway Geyser Basin and walked the board walk to see the Grand Prismatic Spring, the largest spring in the park. And lastly, we drove west until we hit the edge of the park and then back east to Canyon Village to check into our hotel. The scenery was beautiful and it was the perfect day for a drive.


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Teton Village


Day 3! Today we headed over to Teton Village, also known as Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. One of the must things to do in JH is to ride the tram to the top of the mountain – 10,400 feet, to get a 360 degree view. At the top of the mountain there is a shack, and there you can grab waffles and a beer. We decide to do this first. Quickly we get onto the tram, up we go and it just gets colder and colder. Right about the time we reach the top, a cloud moves in from the west and with it comes incredibly strong winds, hail, and a lightning storm. The tram won’t run in the weather so everyone is forced into the shack. This cloud was so thick, we could barely see from one end of the deck to the other.  Everyone packs into the shack, and we are shoulder to shoulder. We finally get our waffles and since there’s no where to move to, we sit down on the floor. The lightning is CRAZY! After about an hour the cloud lifts a little and we make a mad dash to the tram. You can see in the photo on our way down the cloud hovering at the top.


After this, we explored the property and rode the open ski lift up and down the mountain. Not just once, but over and over. Also, the boys bungee trampolined, and we took another lift to the top of Rendezvous Mountain. At the drop off there is a restaurant with outdoor seating for the stunning view. We grabbed some snacks, while the boys ran up and down finding snowballs to pelt at Andy.


We rode the open ski lift a few more times and then decided to call it a day. Back in town, we ate some amazing barbecue at Hole BBQ and crashed for the night.

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Whitewater Rafting the Snake River…

Day two of our Westward journey. Rise and shine we started with breakfast at Bubba’s BBQ next to the hotel and then we hopped into the car to go for a drive.

Right outside of Jackson is The Grand Teton National Park. We stopped at the visitor center and then drove through the south end of the park ending at Lake Jackson. The drive was beautiful and we saw deer and bison.


Our big adventure of the day was our whitewater rafting trip. Our bus driver drove us thirty-five minutes southwest outside of Jackson where we met our guide Tom and loaded in. Although it’s 80 degrees outside, the water was 52 so everyone was put in wetsuits. The water was cold, the canyon gorgeous, and the class 3’s were more fun than any other we’ve been on. We had 10-foot waves, it was crazy.


For dinner we ate Mexican, and Matty and I wandered into the town square for some shopping, the street shootout, and some ice cream.


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Filed under Fun Outings, Jackson Hole/Yellowstone 2017, National Parks and Monuments, Project Life 2017, Vacations