We just spent the last week in the St Louis area and had a long needed vacation. We set a new record- almost 6 months without a vacation (not counting our DC trip since that wasn’t technically a vacation)! I really shouldn’t go that long again, we’re all much happier when I’m traveling. We also combined our trip with a little camping, Joshua did awesome on his first camping trip and Ethan loves to camp, so we had a lot of fun. We camped the first night outside St Louis and then saw the sights of the city the next morning. We had fun going to the top of the arch- a little freaky how it sways though. We took the river cruise and of course did some shopping, went to the zoo, a few historic sites and just had a great time.
It is so much slower traveling with a toddler though! When Ethan was little we just packed him around and he did great, now he gets tired and doesn’t want to sleep unless he’s in bed and gets grumpy and wants to run around like a madman everywhere. We only saw about half the things on my list I thought we’d be able to see. Oh well, we got the important things. And I found another place I could live. Our hotel was 15 minutes outside the city in Fairview Heights, IL. I first fell in love with the town when we stopped for dinner the night before we camped- there was a mall on one side of the street and a target, burlington coat factory, babies r us and tj maxx on the other side of the street, not to mention lots of great places to eat. Then when we went to find our hotel the next day I got all excited about seeing those stores again when I realized it was the same place we stopped for dinner the night before. It seems like you’re in the country even though you’re only a few minutes outside the city and it didn’t have half the traffic of say Sandy, UT. Perfect for me. Oh and the big kicker- just 4 miles away is the world’s largest catsup bottle 😉
Anyway… After spending a few days in the city and doing some fun shopping, we went south to hike the high point of Missouri. It was pretty much in the middle of nowhere in the Mark Twain forest- called Taum Sauk mountain (although it was really a hill). It was a nice 3 mile loop and at the top there were some small waterfalls, we let Ethan skinny dip and he had a great time. He fell asleep on the walk back and Anthony carried him out. Then we drove through more country roads on our way back to KY. We camped again that night on the border of MO and IL at the Trail of Tears state park where we got eaten alive by mosquitos. We stopped in Paducah, KY on our way home the next day and let Ethan splash in the water again- this kid loves water and will find a puddle to splash in no matter where we go. We had a great time and are kind of glad to be home, we’re already working on the next trip… To view all the pics of our trip visit http://carianthonyosborne.shutterfly.com/