Note: I had tons of issues publishing this post. Initially at least half the text was missing. It has since been updated, but the words are never written as eloquently as they first were.
Because we are in the business of taking super long vacations, we stayed in the Northwest for another week. New Years day we hit the road for Montana. It's a four hour drive, and Finn was angry angry angry for the last 30 minutes. Road tripping with young babies is no joke. Aside from some crying, the drive was gorgeous; every tree was covered in snow and the mountains just glistened. A week of slower paced Montana life was the perfect way to end our holiday.
Conor's parent's own a condo in downtown Bigfork, so we made that space home for the week. It's on the main street and just a block away from the family restaurant. Bigfork is the most picturesque little down during Christmas time. The entire town is decorated, each & every storefront. I loved being able to start my mornings with a walk to the local cafe. Sometimes with Liam, sometimes solo. A hot chai & fresh scone was my daily order, and I've been craving that ritual ever since we left!
Across the street from our condo, resides the town clock tower. Every daylight hour it chimes, so we heard a lot of chiming during our stay; yet, every single time Liam was in awe. Whenever it chimed when we walked by, Liam would ask the time and then we would count each ding. It was simple & sweet moments like these, that slowed us down and brought smiles all around. While I am a big city girl at heart, I enjoy a little break from the hustle & bustle.
Much of our time was spent with Grandma & Grandpa at the restaurant. Liam loved his time with them and helping out when & where he could. He is especially fond of Grandpa's truck with the snow plow on the front. While Liam has yet to develop that love for food that we have in this family, I took full advantage of all the fine dining we had each night while his parents worked. When your family is in the hospitality industry, you know your stay is going to be good!
The weather was particularly frigid, so we weren't outside in the Montana beauty as much as I would have liked. Instead we bowled (Liam's first time!), swam, & played hard with the cousins. It's always a little bit of chaos when all the kids are together, so we make sure the wine is flowing! And of course we made a little trip to Whitefish (my favorite Montana city) and stopped at Sweet Peaks (the family icecream shop). Liam insists that everyone share, because duh... that way you can taste ALL the flavors!
One of the best and most important parts of our visit was the time with Conor's grandpa. He's 93 years young, but unfortunately his health has declined in the last few months. Conor joined him for breakfast nearly every morning, and we brought the boys by his house frequently too. I know that Finn in particular brought a smile to his face. His grandpa could not get over Finn's hair (nobody can!)). These are the times that make living away from family extra difficult, so we were very thankful for our long stay. We didn't feel rushed to do it all or see everyone. Instead we enjoyed the slow days and the loved ones that surrounded us.