Our first leg was to Louisville, Kentucky.
We found a ninja gym in Lexington that would let us play in their open gym for five bucks. What a steal! It was in a warehouse with no air conditioning. We were sweating like crazy, but had a great time.
We enjoyed our quick visit with Uncle Alex and Aunt Stephanie.
Always good to see them.
Caroline LOVED meeting their new cat, Trixie.
The next day we drove through St. Louis
and stopped at the most creative, describable
museum we've ever visited.
The pictures don't do it justice.
This is a giant beluga whale statue.
You can walk inside its mouth.
Lots of corners to climb and explore.
This section was like a jungle.
Even the staircases were creative.
Notice the colorful banister.
They had a kid circus that we watched.
And then there's the TEN STORY SLIDE.
It was awesome.
Such an amazing fun stop.
Then we headed on to Iowa.
Even made it to our hotel in time for a quick swim!
We spent the next day exploring in Nauvoo.
Stopped at Carthage Jail first.
This is where Joseph and Hyrum Smith
were martyred. It's a sacred place.
In Nauvoo we stopped at
Pioneer Pastimes for
and old-timey chores and games.
We watched Just Plain Anna Amanda.
Caroline got invited to go on stage at the end.
And said NO.
Went on a quick oxen ride.
The weather was perfect--overcast and cool.
Not like any other summer day we've spent in Nauvoo.
Caroline and I spent some time at the Family Living Center.
She learned how to make rope.
Almost all by herself!
And how to card wool.
She's ready to move to a farm.
While we were doing that,
Brandon and Whitney were doing baptisms
at the Nauvoo Temple. How cool is that?
They loved it!
It's beautiful and they were treated like celebrities.
Obligatory stop at Annie's for their amazing frozen custard.
Found our ancestor on the memorial wall.
Grateful for the sacrifices of those who went before.
Threw rocks in the Mississsippi.
Watched a cute musical put on by all the older missionaries
called Rendezvous in Old Nauvoo.
It was cute and cheezy.
Then one of the highlights was getting to watch
a concert by BYU's Women's a capella group, Noteworthy.
They are AMAZING.
It was a fabulous show.
We totally lucked out in getting to see them.
I was especially impressed by their beat-boxer.
The next day, we stopped in Omaha
at the Henry Doorly Zoo.
Wow. It is awesome.
The only bad thing was, I thought we got
in free with our science center membership,
but we only got a 50% discount.
And when you only plan on staying an
hour or two, that was still a pretty big chunk
of money. Boo.
You can see why it's expensive, though.
They have A TON of cool animals
and a great aquarium.
Caroline and I could have stayed all day.
B&W got burned out more quickly.
We stayed one more night in Nebraska
and then it was off to Utah.
Random rest stop in Wyoming.
The Natural History Museum at UofWyoming was
small, but had a couple cool things.
The kids loved this Augmented Reality sand box.
As you moved the sand around, there was a projector
that would change the land formations.
It was fascinating.
And Whit thought it was awesome to see a skull of the
Harry Potter-named dinosaur, Dracorex Hogwartsia.
And we made one last fun stop at the Carbon County
Historical Museum in Wyoming.
It was free and had some interesting (and disturbing!) items.
And then we made it to Utah.
The van hung in there like a champ!
We did have one check engine light in Nebraska
because I let the gas level get too low multiple times.
I've done that before. Should have learned my lesson.
Looking forward to spending time with our Utah family!