The best gift I have ever received in my life. Opening presents Christmas morning! At one of our stops on the Yellow Stone trip - a warming house/information center...with heated restrooms - the last ones before Old Faithful...popular stop! Cole enjoying snow for the first time...I had to hold him so he wouldn't sink.
My brother started talking about taking his kids somewhere that had "real" snow for Christmas. A lady he works with had just came back from Jackson Hole and talked about how wonderful her trip was...so our vacation plans began. Mom called Dan and I and asked if we would be interested in going to Wyoming for Christmas - I thought it sounded a bit odd, but sure...we would go.
I was really worried about flying with a 7 month old - I didn't want to have "that kid" on the plane. Cole was great. He slept a bit, laughed a lot, and did a lot of flirting. He also did his lovely dinosaur screech throughout both flights - pretty sure the people around us didn't think it was cute and funny like his mommy and daddy do, but better than crying right?On Christmas Eve we had a sleigh ride planned. We started to take Cole, but it was just to darn cold, so Dan and I stayed at the house and then met everyone for a yummy dinner. Cole is great at dinner, sitting in his highchair, as long as you give him some "real" food. He had a lot of firsts this trip - including pasta, chicken nuggets, pancakes, and even a french fry or two...whatever it takes. He has four teeth now and is getting really good a pinching little bits of food, so we are giving him more and more finger foods. My mom gave him a pea and he yakked all over the table at this super-fancy restaurant...oh well! We spent Christmas Day at the house. Santa even found us in Jackson Hole. Cole got lots of cute things from his Ga and Pa and Uncle Skip's family. He was definitely more interested in the wrapping paper and ribbon. We stayed in our pjs all day (a Collett tradition) and my mom made chicken and dumpling soup. It was great! The next day we went on a 12 hour day trip to Yellow Stone...yeah...12 hours with a baby. We left at 6am and returned at 6pm. It was fabulous. Lots of great scenery, lots of snow, and lots of animals. I would say it is not too often that you are driving down a road and a gigantic moose is standing 100 yards away... I am not exactly "one with nature", but it was still pretty amazing. Dan and my brother's family went skiing a couple of times. We went tubing down a big hill. Definitely my kind of tubing. They hooked you up to a pulley system and pulled you to the top of the hill - no climbing. As we were sitting in the living room on Christmas Day I said, "Jeez, if this is Cole's first Christmas, how in the world are we supposed to top this?" Dan piped in with - "Ahhh, he won't remember this so it is fine." Only Dan. You go on trips and can only hope that it will be all what you expect - Jackson Hole exceeded any expectations I could ever have had. It was a wonderful place to visit and a wonderful way to spend the holidays with my family.