Wednesday, November 23, 2011

yellowstone

I'm sure many of you know about the "Make a Wish" foundation. They grant wishes to children facing life-threatening medical conditions. They try and make it possible to meet anyone, do anything, have anything, or go anywhere (there are limitations, but I don't know the rules).

Can you imagine someone asking what you want?

So it has been fun to talk with Steven about his wish. From the beginning he seemed sure, "I want to go to Yellowstone." Sonja and I had to think quick. Yellowstone?! That is only 6 hour drive from our house, and a super cheap entry fee. "But Steven, we will take you to Yellowstone just as soon as you are done with chemo. We can do that as our celebration trip!" This seemed to satisfy him for a while. He has had lots of different ideas since of what he is going to wish for.

So at the conclusion of chemo we set out for the long awaited trip. Don't get me wrong, Yellowstone is a very incredible place. You really do have to make that happen if you haven't been there. There is a reason the country set the land aside for the first National Park. The experience (at least with little kids) consists mostly of driving around the park looking for wildlife, and walking along a series of boardwalks to stare at the earth. And somehow that is enough to make it super fun.

Yellowstone has half of the world's geothermic features due to the huge volcano it sits on top of. The landscape is so strange, sometimes you think you are on the moon, or in some lost, burning forest. There are breathtaking landscapes at every turn. Buffalo roaming the streets. Beautiful colors made by bacteria colonies in the water below. And then of course, there are the geysers.

Steven was the perfect guide around the park. He loves non-fiction and has read up on all aspects of Yellowstone. He has some sort of crazy interest in the geysers. Their names, when they go off, why the go off, etc. He was happier than I had seen him in 9 months. He trooped around with his crutches, clinging to his geyser guide, bugged that we would move on when he only had a few minutes at a place, or if we skipped something. We were all pretty pooped by the end of the day, but he just wanted to keep on going.

The last day, while in our van, he was struck by a brilliant idea: "I know what I could ask for for my make a wish! I could ask to name one of the lesser known mud pots! And then of course..." A large grin crept over his face, "they would have to take me here to see it...."

So, there was a little back fire situation, which has been known to ruin some of my better ideas. We will see what he decides to wish for in the end. I think he has to decide in the next two weeks. Dream big Steven!

7 comments:

  1. What a wonderful trip and made so beautiful through your eyes. Thanks for the being able to capture the beauty we feel.

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  2. My mom is a wish granter for Make A Wish! What an amazing organization. So glad he gets to do something fun!

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  3. It would be pretty cool to have something at Yellowstone named after you. Steven might be on to something. Think of the conversation starter that would be..."Hey, did you know there is a mud pot in Yellowstone named after me?"

    Nice pictures Alisa!

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  4. Wow! I love the pictures and wish you could be our photographer on all our vacations. Too bad we couldn't work that into the wish somehow!

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  5. Love the pictures! Brought back many memories of the (older) Holmsteads going to Yellowstone every year on July 4th.
    Hope Steven gets a mud pot named after him. Our kids have a star named Weidman someplace out yonder. I forgot about that until now.

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