Monday, July 11, 2016

Sara's Wedding

Josh’s sister Sara got married on June 25.  Her wedding, in the middle of nowhere Montana, was a big part of what prompted our purchase of the motor home.  After doing a little research I learned that we could go home via Glacier National Park and add only two hours of driving time to the trip so we planed to take a week to go to the wedding and to Glacier.  As the wedding got closer we realized our week would end just before the 4th of July so it only made sense, with gas prices low, to extend the trip for another week.  We decided to stay north and explore the Northern Cascades and the Olympic Peninsula of Washington.  It ended up being an incredible two weeks of exploring the beauties of the Pacific North West. It felt like there was more to see and do, but we got a fantastic taste of the beauty of that part of our county.

In a nut shell here’s what we did:
1 Family Wedding
2 Weeks on the Road
3 National parks plus 1 National Historic Park
4 Nights on the Beach
5 Gigantic States
6 Beautiful Lakes (that we swam in)

30X8 Feet living space
3281 Miles of Driving

Driving in the RV was as comfortable as a trip to Plentywood Montana can be.  Josh’s dad joined us for the first two days of our journey, which were our big driving days.  We drove about 8 hours per day to get to the wedding. It was really nice to have a 3rd driver. Caleb went with his cousin making the drive even more comfortable.  There was virtually no screaming, teasing, or fighting. I love that the kids are so happy when we are traveling in the RV.  They took up coloring and worked on some masterpieces while we drove.  I love to lie on the back bed and watch out the window (or take a little nap) while we drive. 

We arrived at Josh’s Uncle Doug and Aunt Kathy’s home in Billings in the late afternoon on our first day of the trip.  It was the perfect layover.  In part because it is always good to see family, in part because Kathy spoiled us with an incredible dinner complete with 4 side salads and every detail, and in part because they own a horse stable and teach riding lessons.  With my dad gone my kids don’t have the opportunity to ride horses so it was a real treat that Doug gave them a lesson and let them all ride.  They just wished they could have ridden longer.  It was really fantastic to spend time with Doug and Kathy.

We only spent a day and a half in Plentywood.  We arrived on Friday afternoon, the day before the wedding. We met the rest of the Kirk family at the church, which was literally in the middle of nowhere.  Honestly, it was 25 minutes outside of Plentywood (population 1900) in the middle of miles of fields.  It was very charming and a quant place for a quite family wedding. It was perfect for Sara’s wedding because it is a Danish church and her husband is Danish and has only been in the US for 3 years.  Josh stopped to take this picture for a website his is working on but can see the trees behind the RV.  That is where the church is nestled. 

We enjoyed Friday afternoon at a cute little country lake with Josh’s family.  Everyone was on their best behavior, and the time together was quite pleasant. 

Sharon, Josh’s mom, catered the dinner, made and decorated the cake, and basically worked herself to the bone. She is amazing!  She likes to do it all! 

The kids were really excited about having a new cousin.  Sara’s husband, Martin has a 12 year old daughter, Thea.  She lives in Denmark with her mom, but the kids had a great time playing with her at the wedding and the dance party after the wedding. They have been texting her for the past few weeks. I love that they have a friend that lives in a different part of the world.

Sara is an incredible singer, and Martin has played the gaiter professionally.  They have a band that is the biggest hit of North Eastern Montana.  On their wedding night they played at a street party on Medicine Lake, about 30 minutes from Plentywood.  Of course, we all wanted to hear the band so it was the perfect wedding party! The kids danced their hearts out, and we all had a great time!  It was even complete with fire works! 

Josh’s Grandma is 95 years old.  Helping Grandma and Grandpa is the reason that Sara originally moved to Plentywood. Grandma was ironically  born in Medicine Lake, right across the street from where Sara’s band was playing.  It was so rewarding to watch her life come full circle as the family gathered on the street where she was born.  One of the great things about making the effort to go to the wedding was seeing Grandma Betty (Sophia Elizabeth, Ali’s name sake.)

Blog note: I’m having technical difficulty moving pictures so rather than not posting at all, here are the pictures from the wedding portion of the trip in no particular order. 

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