Summer Travels - Friends, New Cities, and New States

Months ago when I was planning summer travels I realized that a lot of the states that were left for Gwen and I to check off of our list would require separate trips from our trips back East (see map above - grey are ones we hadn't done). They required going West which didn't make sense, or prohibitively far North. I also realized that neither of us really wanted to do a full month of car travel again. It was, while incredible fun, also just a little too much - too much to pack, too much time away from Trav and Daisy (and all our amazing Colorado friends), too many nights not in our beds, too much time away from teaching.

So we adjusted.

We decided to drive straight out and back when we headed East. That way we could still spend a full 10 days in Cape Cod, a full 5 days with my parents, and we would only be gone for 3 weeks. And that extra week plus... well we transplanted it.

Gwen and I left Saturday the 22nd to head West, then Northwest. We started our trip with a night in Salt Lake City. While we've been to Utah before, we'd only really been to the more Southern parts, and we'd never seen this well-known city! So that's where we made our first stop.

SLC was beautiful! The surrounding mountains made us feel right at home as we checked out the Capital, drove through the center of the city, checked out the City Creek Center and Temple Square. We ate dinner at The Garden Restaurant (which has a pretty great view!). 

Next we headed up to Idaho! A new state for us, and an exciting opportunity to finally visit with a friend in real life that I've known online for over a decade! Years and years ago, over a dozen years, I found a message board as I was freshly engaged and wanted some commiseration while wedding planning. What I stumbled on instead was a beautiful community that has sustained me and seen me through more then I could have ever imagined at that point. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting, and staying with, many of those people in our various travels, and it was so great to finally meet with Sarah. 

She was a gracious host, but more so, is such a blessing as a friend. She gave us such hospitality! She and I planned weddings together, we celebrated babies together, and we dealt with countless ups and downs together. It was amazing to hug each other and watch our now grown babies play together.

We were with her, outside of Boise for two nights. We played with dogs, made dinner together, ate s'mores.


Gwen and I made the most of our full day there by heading first to the Birds of Prey center outside of Boise....

Then by heading into the city itself to explore. We ate lots of french fries (hey, have to try the local specialty!), and delicious waffles.

We checked out the Capital here too...

Then headed to the Discovery Center of Idaho... a great please touch, STEM centered children's museum.

(They just so happened to have a LEGO themed exhibit... which was just perfect for Gwen!)

We headed outside after that, exploring some of Boise's beautiful green spaces for some Frisbee... 

and flowers!

We met back up with Sarah and Aurelia that evening for pizza, ice cream, and a little bit of jump rope.

Before we knew it, it was time to travel North and East, heading up to the top of Idaho and our first night of camping! (Or so we thought....)

Part two coming soon!

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