Tori's Blog

Tori Kropp’s Great Wyoming Adventure

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

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Alexander starts the first day of 3rd grade tomorrow and here we are, still in the amazing state of Wyoming. We will head back this evening. Although I had tossed the idea around over the summer, it wasn’t until last weekend that I actually decided that we would take a completely unplanned, spontaneous trip to Wyoming; Jackson Hole, The Grand Tetons and YellowStone.

Originally, my thought was to simply get in the car and drive (ahem – something like 19 hours). We like road trips and spend a lot of time in the car traveling between our house, north of San Francisco, and Lake Tahoe. But thankfully, I did listen to some reason and decided instead we would fly into Jackson Hole and rent a car. Good to note – when you wait until two days before traveling, plane tickets can be very inexpensive. I’m not sure I would recommend it for most situations but it is good information to have.

I realize that many of my friends think I am completely loco but that’s ok. So off we went and my first initial and very brief report is that every family should (maybe even just once and not so far) take a spontaneous adventure someplace. I grew up traveling from Michigan to Florida on school breaks, without planned hotels or stopping points. It was always a new experience and did provide some good stories to an otherwise long couple of driving days. Alexander is used to my lack of planning too far ahead and is game to do pretty much anything. Although, I have to say that our trip to Haiti and the Dominican Republic when he was five was perhaps a little too spontaneous. Sorry, I got off track here but that was very hard time for our family and admittedly, I was not at my best thinking.

What I can tell you about the last six days is that we have had an absolute blast. Wildlife, interesting people, amazing mountains and landscape but best of all, the shared experience of our family time and the beauty of just seeing what comes of each day. Being reminded, as school begins, that unstructured time for us is really, really important. At one point we were lying on the ground and Alexander looked up and said, “You know mom, if you stay still, you can just watch the clouds move by”. Is there any better gift to give a child in the summer?

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