All 50 Road Trip-May 31, 2018, Day 20

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Banff, Alberta, Canada to Browning, Montana

Graham was really coughing last night and so was Reagan. She came down for water, and that seemed to slow her coughing down. Water didn’t help Graham’s cough so I tried medicine. He had already started out on the top bunk. It didn’t have a rail and was a bit shaky so he was quite uneasy about this.

I offered for him to sleep in the bed with Whitman, and both boys were fine with that. Graham was super relieved, but his coughing continued. It was also hot in their room so I tried a fan that was in the condo; it didn’t work. Eventually, Robby put his fine in the room with them, and we moved Whitman to the couch cushions so maybe Graham would cool off. That seemed to help and soon everyone was sound asleep.

We woke up and even though we were spread out over the large condo, it didn’t take too long for us to load up and hit the road. Robby stopped in the little village and bought us some doughnuts for our breakfast. We ate in the car as we left Banff National Park and headed to the town of Banff.

We stopped to take a quick picture by the sign at Banff. Then we drove to the Cave and Basin Historical Site. It was the spot of their first National Park. It is a highly developed a cave area. It all highly smelled of sulfur. We walked all around the exhibits, inside and outside. We were pretty much the only people there that early.

There was a room that had a cartoon. Whitman was highly intrigued by it. After a bit, the language switched to French. He looked at me and said, “They were just speaking Arkansas and now I don’t know what they are saying.”

From the cave area, we drove past the Banff Springs Fairmont. Then it was on to Bow Falls. We didn’t have to hike at all since we could see them from our parking spot. During the summer and fall, you can walk across the stream below the falls. There would have been no walking across it today though.

Soon after we switched, and I started driving. I drove and drove and drove and it rained and rained and rained. It was really the perfect day for a messy rain since we were in the car so much. Robby did some of his work for a bit. Quite a bit of his time was spent making lunches for the kids. Making lunch in a kitchen takes a while but in a moving car where all of the things you need are tucked in bins, drawers and boxes throughout the car.

Afterwards, we played a few rounds of bingo. In the middle of bingo, we did have to take a break to cross into the border. When we crossed over, Whitman shouted, “back in Arkansas!” We corrected him and then he started singing “America” over and over again. 

The weather never improved and just seemed to get colder. We made it to the other side of Glacier National Park (east). We watched the film and headed up the Going to the Sun Road. The clouds were everywhere. It was just sprinkling but gracious, it was cold. There would have been no 5 mile hike today. 

The nasty weather did make for us to have the park pretty much to ourselves. Our first bit of the drive was around Lake St. Mary. As we drove around the lake, Robby played a few podcasts for us as we drove. He played one podcast and then played it right again. I was the only one in the car to realize that it was the same one that we had just listened to. Unfortunately, I realized this at the very end! We did learn something new though.

After driving to the end of the road, the rest is being cleared of snow, we turned around and headed to the part of the park called Many Glacier. The road was crazy bumpy, and we thought that the pay off was going to be minimal. We made it to the end of the road, took a picture of the still closed lodge and turned around to head back.

I passed out drinks as we headed down the road. Then we saw a few people standing out of their cars. We watched. We looked. Then we saw it! A MOOSE! We drove past. Robby jumped out to see if we could see it. Then we lost all sense and broke all kind of rules by getting out of the car. The kids had their ipads snapping away. Hopefully, Robby was able to take a decent picture with his little lens. The people next to us had multi-thousand dollar cameras taking their pictures. It was a great end to the wet, dreary day.

Robby had promised the kids at some point on our trip that he would pay them each 10 dollars if we saw a moose. I am not really sure if the kids were excited about the moose sighting or the windfall of 10 dollars that they will receive. 

Leaving the park, it seemed that there were even more potholes. I asked Robby if he could change a flat tire. He said that it would be hard in this van and then mentioned that he would just call AAA. I looked at the phone and saw that we did have “no service.” Thankfully, we didn’t have to decide what we would do if that happened. Well, I know what I would do-I would stay in the car! 

On the way to Browning, where our hotel is tonight, we chose to drive by the town of East Glacier. The road there was mountainy and cloudy. I was playing on my phone when Robby started shouting, “Bear! Bear!” I threw my phone down and grabbed the camera. By the time I could get my first picture taken, the momma bear had crossed the road and her three cubs were following her. Everyone was soon screaming with excitement.

After seeing the bear, the road went straight uphill. Apparently, these parts of Montana don’t believe in guard rails. It was very nerve-racking! Thankfully, we made it down. It was one of those roads where you don’t see anyone for miles and miles. We were glad to see some sort of civilization.

We ended up eating at a Mexican restaurant called Serrano’s in East Glacier. The food was excellent, and we quickly devoured two fried ice creams. After eating, we walked to a pie shop but they didn’t have huckleberry pie, which I really would like to try. We took a few pictures by the train station, and then headed to the hotel. 

It was a short and straight drive to the hotel. It is nice, and once we arrived the kids immediately started on their showers. Robby and Campbell ran to grocery store to buy some bread and a few snacks for the next few days. This is the first time on a trip that I have almost run out of food. Don’t panic, I have plenty of lunch food and even enough to make a supper if we wouldn’t be able to find a place to eat. Snacks, however, I am running very low of. 

Today was a pretty wet day. I hope that tomorrow will be a bit brighter along with much straighter roads!

All 50 Road Trip-May 30, 2018, Day 19

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Kalispell, MT to Banff, Alberta, Canada

Today was the day that we were to head back towards home, instead we just turned the car due North and headed to Banff, Canada. A few days ago I was looking at the map and mentioned that we were close to Banff. Robby immediately said that it was on his bucket list. I reminded him that I had never heard of Banff being on his bucket list. Actually, I had never heard of Banff at all. 

Everyone slept great last night after our late night of swimming. Robby was up first and went to have breakfast while I was in the shower. As the kids put on their clothes, they trickled to breakfast while Robby loaded up the room. We let Whitman sleep as long as he could. He stayed asleep until we were loading up the cart and ate his breakfast in the car.

We loaded up the car. It looked like it had rained a bit last night, but the weather was pretty pleasant. The drive out of Kalispell included a dirt road so we did question the google maps for a good 20 minutes. Thankfully, we were soon on a little highway headed towards Canada.

The kids watched a movie first thing this morning while Robby and I admired  the scenery. We stopped once for gas, and then again for a potty stop further down the road. The Canadian Rockies were nearby us on most of the drive but we didn’t have to drive through them which was nice. 

After crossing into the Canada, I quickly one very important difference between te US and Canada. Their rest areas! They did have plentiful rest areas, but they consisted of a trash can and a porta potty. Seriously, the Canadians could learn a few things from us. Another thing that we noticed yesterday, while in Montana, is that there aren’t too many people out and about in these parts. We have driven miles and miles without seeing anyone. And what is with the cell phone coverage in these parts? Why can’t our phones work even though there are mountains near us? We have struggled with having decent cell service most of the day long.

We soon made it into Kootenay National Park, which was our gateway to Banff National Park. There were two cliffs that we had to go through on our way into the park. Then we immediately saw the Radium Hot Springs. 

We drove just as slow as we could on the drive in hopes of finding a bear. This was through a part of the road that there were bear signs everywhere along with warnings not to stop. Sure enough, we eventually found ourselves a bear. We never did stop, but we turned around at least 2 different times to get a good look at the bear. Now, we did also get a good look at a fool climbing out of his car to take a picture of the bear.

At that stop, we also saw the results of a loud noise that we heard earlier in our drive. It sounded like a rock had hit our window and sure enough, a large crack later appeared. It is already big enough that we will probably just have to have our window replaced. 

We found another picture perfect picnic spot near Vermillion Crossing in the middle of the park. We had passed the bear area, but we still kept a vigilant eye out. The boys played some football but since we were near a river they didn’t risk it too much. 

We did notice the Kootenay NP lodge. Now, Robby has a pretty long list of NP lodges that he wants to return to, but this one certainly would not be on the top of the list. Their Visitor’s Center was more like a highway rest stop/information center as well. In the US, our Visitors Centers are a destination. Not surprisingly though, this one didn’t have a film to watch about the park. 

It was only a bit further when we stopped to take a quick walk on a short trail. It was called Paint Pots. We aren’t really sure why it was called Paint Pots except that the bridge was cedar red, the evergreens were bright green and the creek was a beautiful green and blue. Tonight we did discover that we didn’t make it to the paint pot area. The pictures that Robby saw on his phone was reminiscent of Yellowstone’s Paint Pots. However, I like my red bridge, green trees and blue water idea better.

Back on the road, we came across a sign that “moose next 2 km.” We did our best to find those elusive moose but yet again, we came up short. It kind of spit rain on us off and on some of the afternoon. It didn’t take too long before we made it into Banff National Park. 

We were soon right at the doorstep of our hotel for the night-Lake Louise Inn. The kids were delighted to find that we are in a condo. There is a loft upstairs with 3 beds, a bathroom and a chair. There is also another bedroom with bunk beds and another bed. Robby and I weren’t quick enough grabbing our bed so we are in the murphy bed in the living room. That is fine with me because there is a fireplace. Even though it is fake, I have still stood in front of it warming my backside. It is cold up here, and we are just wearing our shorts today. 

After we explored our condo for a bit, we soon headed off to see Lake Louise. Now, it is very, very pretty, but I do think that Avalanche Lake from yesterday was just a pretty or maybe having to work for the view (5 mile hike) made it better than driving up to the lake. We took pictures there and explored the hotel.

The hotel was built by the train company to give people a destination. It is still working. Robby said that rooms there were 700 a night. The signs said that if you weren’t guests, you shouldn’t come in. The kids were moritified when Robby just blew right by the signs, and we all headed in. It was nice inside but didn’t compare at all to our National Park lodges.

Next up, we drove to Lake Moraine. It was also beautiful, but this time I was chilly. There was a huge rock boulder pile nearby that everyone was climbing up. I had read last night that from the top of the rock pile, it is called the “20 dollar view” because that view is on the Canadian 20 dollar bill. 

Robby sent the kids to climb up the boulder pile and away they went. Reagan was holding his phone so she was in charge of the pictures which were beautiful. It took them a long while to climb up there and even longer to climb down. 

While they were climbing, we took some pictures and even had Whitman take a picture for us. Whitman thought he was something else being able to take a picture with the big camera. He became quite bossy telling us how to stand. When he finished, we had a good laugh about the picture being crooked. Later he told us that some “photo people take crooked pictures.”

From there, we filled up the gas tank and then back to the hotel to find supper. Robby ordered a pizza from the restaurant at the hotel. There are very few eating establishments open around here-like pizza at the hotel or nothing. We didn’t want our crackers and cheese for our meal just yet so pizza it was. While that was baking, Robby checked out the washing machines. 

We had some yummy cheese and sausage pizzas for supper along with some chicken pasta. Afterwards, everyone had some cookies and coke. It was around 10 when everyone went to their beds which is the earliest the kids have been to sleep in weeks!

Robby just walked into our room with today’s laundry. When he came in, he had me go back out just to see how light it is. It is 10 at night and is crazy light out there. You wouldn’t need a flashlight out there at all. Pretty amazing. 

All 50 Road Trip-May 29, 2018, Day 18

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Kalispell, MT plus Glacier NP

Despite the multiple children with coughs in our room, we all slept very well, and there wasn’t too much coughing during the night. Since yesterday was a bit of driving, we did take it easy this morning. We woke up and slowly got ourselves ready.

Breakfast was just down the hall, and since this is a Holiday Inn Express there was cinnamon rolls. There was also lots of bacon so everyone left the breakfast area happy. After going back to the room for just a minute, we loaded up for our day at Glacier National Park.

It took us a long while to find the Visitor’s Center after we arrived. When we finally did find it, we were again disappointed because it did not have a film. What in the world? I feel like I am going to have to write the National Park Service to complain about their broken films and lack of films. 

The kids earned their Jr. Ranger badges there since we had worked on their booklets at home. We also bought an ornament as well. I think that brings up our ornament count up to at least 6 on this trip. We left the Visitor’s Center and drove the Going to the Sun Road. Only some of it was opened due to the snow still n the road. 

We drove around Lake McDonald before stopping at the Lake McDonald Lodge. Robby checked into riding one of the red Jammer buses but they didn’t have enough room for all of us. We did, however, take a hour long boat tour around the lake. It was very beautiful and everyone enjoyed it. 

Afterwards, we drove to Avalanche for a picnic stop. We were right on the water-incredibly right on the water. The kids enjoyed skipping rocks into the gushing water. The water was pretty and all, but rushing so fast that it could have been very dangerous had anyone decided to take a dip!

Nearby, we started walking on Avalanche Lake trail. It was about a 5 mile trail. A 5 mile trail sounds so simple and refreshing. Nope! It was stunning and gorgeous. It seemed like most of the trail went straight up the mountain. The water flowed right beside us most of the way.

It took a good while to make it to the end of the trail. When we did, the pay off was the most beautiful view of Avalanche Lake and the surrounding mountains. Now, before we explored the lake, we thought that we would walk a bit further down the trail.

The bit further down the trail was full of mud. MUD! Seriously, it took us a long, long time to go a tiny bit at all. Robby would have to help Keaton and then turn right around and help Whitman. We were pretty much all covered in mud by the time that we made it to a part of the trail that was completely covered in water. At this point, Robby decided that maybe we should just go back to the end of the trail instead of forging a new trail.

At the end of the trail, we returned to Avalanche Lake. The kids took off their shoes and waded into the ice cold water. Whitman was given a good lecture about where and how far in he could go. Thankfully, everyone stayed dry.

Near the end of the lake, there was a bathroom which Anderson needed to go to. He really needed a stop, so him and me headed back after he put his shoes back on. The others were going to meet us there a few minutes later. 

When we made it to the bathroom, there was a deer standing about 10 feet from Anderson. After he saw that deer so close to him, and it was the biggest dear I have ever seen, he didn’t need to go to the bathroom any longer.

When he was done, we stood on the edge of the trail, and I quickly noticed every person walking by with bear spray. One man had his bear spray in his hand. So I had to ask him if he had seen anything. He said that he had not but just in that area, he thought he might see something. From then on, I stayed close to the little people. I stayed close to them so I could outrun them; I can't outrun the big 3 anymore.

The hike back down didn’t seem like it took too long at all. Going up was a struggle especially when you have to pull Whitman. He walked but is just in no hurry at all. Everyone was happy to make it to the bottom of the trail and the girls were happy to see flush toilets at the bottom of the trail. 

Once back in the car, everyone got a drink, I worked on the blog and then passed out a snack. When we made it back to the main road, I drove while Robby did some work. It seemed to take forever to get back into town. Mainly because we were looking at the clock since we still had to return a Redbox, pick up supper, and have time for the kids to swim before the pool closed at 10.

It was 9:20 when I dropped the kids and Robby off in the lobby. They ate while I straightened the car. Then they quickly changed into their suits. I then watched them swim while Robby put in the laundry. We then switched spots and he watched the kids while I ate my supper. Everyone enjoyed swimming tonight. 

Reagan was the first one to head back to the room. She had her shower there, and the others had their showers in the pool area. Reagan and Graham, whose ear doesn’t hurt anymore, had a bit of cough and cold medicine. Then everyone celebrated our wonderful day with a glass of coke before bed.

All 50 Road Trip-May 28, 2018, Day 17

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Seattle, WA to Kalispell, MT

Robby woke up at 4 to jump in the car to take Nonna and Pops to the airport for their 6 am flight. He said that it took him 22 minutes round trip. I, however, didn’t know that he was even gone. I did hear his alarm briefly but that was about it.

At 7, it was time to start stirring again. This hotel, despite the wonderful laundry room, has the interesting breakfast. Everything is prepackaged so we grabbed a handful, literally, and then headed to the car for our 8+ hour day. 

Somehow it always ends up being that I have stops for very, very early on our journey or when we are about there. We always need most stops in the middle of the day. Our first stop was Snoqualmie falls which was just about 20 minutes outside of the city.

The falls were really pretty, and we spent a good long time walking around. When we left the hotel, Robby said that we had 3 spare hours to toy with during the day. We spent the first hour of that time at Snoqualmie falls which is also where Twin Peaks was filmed. I don’t really remember much about Twin Peaks, maybe I will have to watch a rerun or two of them.

As we were leaving the town, we went through their neat little historic district. We jumped out to take a few pictures of the train depot. Then, we bought gas once more, passed out waters and then were back on the road. 

But we didn’t make it to far before we stopped at a Safeway. We did need items for lunch for the next few days so Robby loaded up. The ice chest barely closed by the time we stuffed if full again with cokes, cheese, lunch meat, cubed cheese and sausages. Again, there is nothing better than eating a sandwich while on the road somewhere. Seriously. Sandwiches are not that much fun at home, but are much more exciting on a trip.

We passed the first real leg of our journey by listening to a podcast about big foot. It was over an hour long so it definitely kept the big boys and Reagan’s attention. We did stop at a rest stop with Mt. Rainier still looming off in the distance, and a few miles later we stopped at a huge sculpture of horses. It had a beautiful view of the Colombia River gorge there. 

At least a week ago, we were riving, and I mentioned that every crop should have its name on the fence. This morning we passed a sign saying “crop names on fence next 14 miles.” It was the best 14 miles ever for me reading all of the crop names. There were potatoes, buckwheat, alfalfa, sweet corn, field corn,peas,beans and wheat. If I ever help pass a law, crop names on the fence will be the one I pass.  

We finally made it to Spokane, which would have been in our original hotel stop, around 4. We still had 4 more hours to go but still had time to get out and run around the World’s Largest Radio Flyer wagon which was also a slide and monkey bars. When Whitman went down the slide the first time, he flew at least 2 feet off of the slide before hitting the ground. 

There was a little park area nearby that we spent a few minutes at. Also there was the Loff Carousel. Anderson pointed out that Robby did say that we would not ride it, but soon we were all sitting on the carousel. It was different in that as you passed on your outside horse, you would grab a ring from a machine. Then on the other side you would throw the ring into a painting that had a mouth of a goat. 

We left the park, there was a statue of a goat that would suck up your trash. Reagan was the one holding the trash, but she was not that impressed by the trash eating goat. A little further in Spokane was Mary Lou’s Milk Bottle. It was a huge milk bottle which was closed for Memorial Day. Boo! That was fine though because we stopped at a 7-11 that we passed a few minutes before. We did save probably 25 bucks and that made Robby pleased as well except both of us had been wanting ice cream for a few hours so we just bought ourselves some while the kids enjoyed their icees.

We drove a bit further into Idaho. This has been one of the most beautiful drives today. We eventually had to stop for more gas and then picked up supper at McDonalds. We have no had McDs two days in a row and that is plenty for me. 

The kids ate as we jumped off the interstate for a little bit to drive through Wallace, Idaho. It is a little town that the interstate had to go around because all of the buildings are registered as historic places. Wallace is interesting because the residential area is built on the side of a mountain so they are known for their wooden staircases leading to the houses. It is pretty neat to see. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time explore the stairs since we were already running late, late!

We eventually turned off the interstate and headed up a two lane road towards Glacier National Park. We rarely saw anyone on this road except for people flying past us. It was stunning. When we were about an hour from our hotel, Whitman decided he needed to potty. We pulled over and as he did his business I told him to look around because this was the most beautiful place that he would ever potty. Him looking around was a bad idea because I almost got my shoes wet. Robby jumped out to take a picture of the scenery about the time that I realized that there were gnats everywhere. I threw Whitman in the car, slammed our doors and started waving my jacket towards Robby’s open door trying to shoo off the bugs. This all happened about 9:45-even though the huge moon was out, it was still daylight. 

Reagan is feeling much better today. She took more breakfast from the hotel than anyone else and ate every bit of it. She does have a bit of a cold even though her tummy is better. Now, Graham has said that his ear hurts tonight. I have tons of medicines with me so after tonight, we will reassess tomorrow.

We made it to the hotel around 10:45 which was not too bad for losing an hour. We also made many stops along the way today. Tomorrow we will be at this same hotel so we will have plenty of time at Glacier National Park.

Current Dennie Kid State Count (May 28, 2018):

Reagan-Complete-May 22, 2018

Anderson-Complete-May 22, 2018

Graham-Complete-May 22, 2018

Campbell-Complete-May 22, 2018

Keaton-Complete-May 22, 2018

Whitman-needs North Dakota

All 50 Road Trip-May 27, 2018, Day 16

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Seattle, WA plus Olympic NP

My cabin slept well last night even though we stayed up incredibly late. The boat left last night around 11ish. Not everyone was onboard so they kept calling people over and over again on the intercom. Reagan found this fascinating so she would turn on the tv so we could better hear the announcement. Then we would look on the box cam to see if we could see anyone running towards the ship. We didn’t see anything exciting though. 

We woke up docked in Seattle. We were supposed to be able to leave the boat at 8:30, but it was much later than that. We were at breakfast by 7:30 to enjoy our last buffet. Reagan is feeling better but not enough to eat much for breakfast. The big boys will certainly miss their chocolate milk each morning, and I’ll miss my eggs benedict.

Yesterday, Graham told me that he was a bit homesick, and Keaton has asked Nonna and me what color our couch is at home. We still have 10 days before we make it back home-though I am still trying to convince Robby to take a few more days than 10 to get home. On the other hand, I have lately had dreams about missing VBS or getting there without all of my stuff.

After eating our breakfasts, we headed back to our rooms for a bit of downtime. We listened as the called different color tags and waited for ours. The girls watched information about different cruises and different cruise ships. Eventually, they called light blue and off the boat we headed.

Getting off the boat was a bit more difficult than in Hawaii. We did find our luggage easily this time and walked to customs. My super big suitcase that Nonna and Pops carried on the plane for me, will be lucky to make it home in tact. It was pretty damaged on the way to Seattle, and I am fairly confident that at least one wheel will be off by the time it makes it home. 

Robby called the shuttle after we left customs. As soon as we had dragged our luggage to the shuttle stop and set everything down, the shuttle showed up. We filled up the bus and headed to our car. It didn’t take long at all to make it back to our van.

The first thing Robby did was start the van and was relieved to hear it start. We threw all of the luggage on the back seat and headed to Olympic National Park. The first hour in the car was pretty silent. All of the kids snoozed even Reagan and Anderson. 

We had to stop for gas so that did wake everyone up. Of all of the gas stations for us to stop at, we picked one that had 1 potty! Seriously! We did all buy a coke as we left and were soon back on the road.

It took about 2 hours to get to our lunch stop at a McDonalds. The kids were delighted to see that the lunch stop did have a playground. They were able to play for a few minutes while waiting or our lunches.From our lunch stop, it was about 20 minutes to the visitor’s center of the Olympic National Park.  It was a beautiful drive to the National Park. There were mountains, lakes and tall trees. It was a really pretty drive.

Soon we stopped at the visitor’s center. The first words that Anderson said as we climbed out of the car was “I hope there is a movie.” Sure enough it was broken. They did have some knowledgeable rangers, stamps for our books, an ornament for our Christmas tree, and a huge slice of a tree that was huge.

It was just a bit further down the road when we stopped for Madison Falls. We could still see some of those huge trees. We thought the hike was a bit longer than it actually was. We were shocked to turn the corner after .1 miles to see a beautiful waterfall. The kids climbed around it, and then we went near the nearby creek and climbed on the rocks. 

It wasn’t too much further down the road until we came upon Lake Crescent. The lake was a beautiful blue and rivaled the beauty of Lake Tahoe. We came upon the National Park lodge, and it was quickly put on our list of places to come back and stay. 

The lodge was so quaint. It was perfect with croquet and badminton in the front lawn. Then the lake was crystal blue with people swimming and canoeing on it. Seriously, it made you want to jump in and take a swim. It was so pretty. We then, drove back towards Seattle and our hotel.

On the way back to the hotel, we stopped in Tacoma for supper. Robby found a place with good reviews, and we headed that way. It was called MSM, Magical Sandwich Makers. Name sounded cute, but the place looked like a dump from the outside. A dump! We almost didn’t stop, but surprisingly, the sandwiches were very good. They were Subway style sandwiches which were delicious even though most folks were in there probably because they had the munchies. They are selling cannabis on every corner around here after all!

After our supper, we drove on through Tacoma, which is a cute little town. Then it was on to the hotel. We certainly lucked out with our hotel. We are at the hotel that we were at the night before we left for the cruise. This hotel has free laundry along with 4 washers and 5 dryers. Robby snapped one picture of our cart load of laundry plus we did 1 more load after those. 

Now, he filled up 4 washers and then 5 dryers on the first round of laundry. Once those clothes were in, everyone changed into clean pjs if they had them. Campbell and Keaton didn’t have any so they just wore Robby’s tshirts while waiting on the shower. Whitman was a bit unnerved since he just had pajama pants to put on while waiting on clean laundry. 

We had taken almost everything out of the car, so while the laundry was rolling around in the dryer, I went through every single bag, box and barrel (We didn’t really have any barrels but it sounded good.) We initially were put in Nona and Pops’ room which was just a normal hotel room. We asked them very nicely to switch with us since their room had a couch and a bedroom. We needed every bit of room since the contents of the van would soon be laid out all over the room.

Once the laundry was dry, Robby and I ran down to get it. We filled, completely filled, their laundry cart and then snuck it up to our room to work on the laundry. It didn’t take too long to repack 8 people for 10 more days of a trip.

The boys headed to Nonna’s room to spend the night. I hope that they rest well since Nonna and Pops’ plane leaves at the crack of dawn so they will have to leave early, early in the morning with Robby. Once we finished putting away the laundry, I tucked my crew in bed. Tomorrow was supposed to be a short car ride, but I think after enjoying Olympic National Park so much today, that we have decided to press on so we can have more time at Glacier National Park in a few days. Robby told Campbell that we would do 8 hours in the car tomorrow and she said, “at least it is not 10.”