What a day.
Jackson and I woke up and ran down to the lake to watch the sunrise on the mountains. It was a cold, crisp, wet morning, and it smelled like Christmas outside. Our plan to see the sunrise was foiled as it was overcast and cloudy. While we didn't see a pink sky, we did see the mountains sticking out of the clouds which was pretty awesome. We got back to the RV as the girls were waking up. Only then did the rain start, for which I was very grateful. Rain gives us the chance to play catch up. We sat in the RV, snuggled in our blankets, ate a little breakfast and spent the morning doing the Jr. Ranger programs. By the time we turned them into the visitor center (and the kids did one last look at the gift shop) it was already noon.
Driving north through the park, we crossed into Yellowstone. It is one big park. Two hours of driving, and we arrived at the Yellowstone Inn and Lodge area. I was told if we go to Yellowstone, we must spend one night at the Inn. Since it was still kind of a rainy day, we grabbed lunch at the cafeteria and from the comfort of our window table, saw Old Faithful go off right on schedule. And then the rain came down! Everyone ran inside and the kids and I went back to the RV. Lunch was at the Lodge, but our room was at the Inn, so we drove over there.
Before going to our room, we walked all along the gysers and saw Old Faithful erupt again. The dark clouds moved in again, and before we knew it, it was a total downpour. Thunder and lightening, hail, all of it! It was fabulous. I told the kids, "now THIS is a night to be staying at an Inn, NOT in our RV!!" They agreed.
The lobby of this historic Inn is breathtaking. It looks a little like The Swiss Family Robinson Tree House. Old, wood log steps wind way up into the rafters, five flights! Guests are only allowed to go up to the 3rd floor. There are huge comfy chairs with a giant fireplace and views all around. We ran through the rain back to the RV to gather our belongings, including school work. Shlepping it up to the 3rd floor, we found a great, big table and spread everything out. For those of you CAL folks, it was like being at that old, cool library with the long tables, which I now can't remember the name.
Anyway, we spent over 2 1/2 hours doing some work and met lots of nice people, including another homeschool family. The girls quickly made friends with their girls and swapped all kinds of stories. Before I knew it, it was 8pm, and we hadn't had dinner. Thankfullly we picked up some sandwiches and brought them back to the room.
Each day we see some amazing sights. And each day I think it can't get better, but it does. Today Sammy said, "Mom, I didn't think I would like this place, but I love it. Thanks so much for bringing us here. I think I want to live here." It doesn't get much better than that.