We were invited to go with Landon on his latest field work expedition. I had really been looking forward to this - usually Landon just goes off and has adventures without us, so it was a treat to go along!
We were only going as far as eastern Washington. It was about a 4.5 hour drive, so still long, but now that we're veterans of the 13 hour triple state drive to get home, it didn't seem too bad. The whole time we were driving, I felt like I was in Idaho. The east side of the state has a dryer climate and the same kind of plant life.
We camped at Lewis and Clark Trail state park, right near a river. It was really pretty! We weren't too sure what to do with Walt this time...we don't have a sleeping bag for him, and his little tent is too small now. We ended up just letting him bunk in with us. I was pretty worried about it since we have never let Walt sleep in our bed. Not even when he was a newborn. Not that I care if you let your kids sleep with you, it's just not something I ever wanted to do. I like my alone time. :) We kept him up super late so he would be tired, then did our regular bedtime routine. He actually slept really well! Mom and Dad, on the other hand - well, we had to get used to his kicking. :)
Hanging out in Landon's world was a little bit surreal. Everyone there except Walter and myself had a PhD in some kind of science. The campfire conversation revolved around bio-geochemistry, optically stimulated luminescence, and clumped carbonate isotopes. It was all very fascinating, but also a little hard on the confidence of meager little old me. I told Landon's advisor (who is quite literally married to a rocket scientist) the next day, "I promise I am smart - if you want to talk about the media's impact on elections and public policy, or the best way to pitch to bloggers, I would have a lot more to contribute!"
It was great to see the work they do, though - now I have a better understanding of where it is that Landon goes all the time. :) And Walt was a fabulous little traveling buddy for me. We had a blast exploring the area.
In true form, Walt loved all the water we encountered. We threw rocks in the river and hiked around while we waited for Daddy to get done with his work.
Even if it did take 6 hours to get home (Seattle traffic can be a beast...), we are so glad we went! Hopefully we'll be able to tag along on a few more of these field trips in the future!