Glencoe and Hidden Valley

We slept in and ate breakfast at our cabin. Then we went to explore! We found the spot where Hagrid’s hut was filmed and we took a little hike up to Signal Rock. Josh discovered these tiny little frogs hopping all over the trail and they were the hit of the hike! 2018-07-12 10.27.15 HDR2018-07-12 10.44.412018-07-12 10.45.392018-07-12 10.49.482018-07-14 04.52.042018-07-12 10.23.372018-07-12 10.27.00We all wished we could spend one more night in our cute cabin, but we’ve got more to see!2018-07-12 11.08.41Our Hagrid HouseSince dinner was so good, we decided to go to the same place, Glencoe Gathering, for lunch.  Service was slow, but food was delicious and the presentation was awesome!  We had a sticky chocolate cake for dessert that we devoured in 3.2 seconds flat.  2018-07-12 12.41.06We drove through the Glencoe Valley. Remember how I said Scotland was beautiful? Well, Glencoe is just indescribable. I’m going to be thinking about it for a loooong time. 2018-07-12 11.36.312018-07-12 11.41.082018-07-12 11.45.37We pulled off on a few scenic overlooks and at Three Sister we decided to go for a short hike. We’d heard maybe there was a waterfall. 2018-07-12 13.33.142018-07-12 13.31.04 HDRUsually I am a planner to the 100 degree. But, this is an instance where NOT planning really paid off. Discovering Hidden Valley might be a highlight of my life. We had been hiking for about 20 min when a man on the trail who didn’t speak very good English said there was a big waterfall about 50 min away. Immediately Blake and Josh balked. Too far, they said! Halle was willing to give it a go. We talked for a few minutes about having adventures and having the right attitude and everyone decided we should see where the day would take us. So off we hiked! It was also not an easy hike at all. But, it was super interesting. Rocks to climb, streams to cross, beautiful ferns surrounding us.2018-07-12 13.51.052018-07-12 14.06.38 HDR2018-07-12 14.09.38-12018-07-12 14.15.432018-07-12 14.24.52We finally made it over the crest to hidden valley. And it made Hawaii look like a barren wasteland. No picture, no video can do it justice. 2018-07-12 14.59.032018-07-12 14.57.46 HDR2018-07-12 15.04.572018-07-12 15.08.13 HDRThe kids plopped down and Poor Josh was so thirsty! We though we were going for a quick 30 min walk, so we didn’t even bring water with us. A kind lady overhead him and she offered him her water bottle! He was so very grateful. I love that kind people exist wherever you go. The world is so full of goodness and light.2018-07-12 15.05.27I never wanted to leave this beautiful place! I loved the waterfall the best and Rusty loved the valley the best.2018-07-12 15.10.352018-07-12 08.08.54-3We’ve found that if we can keep the kids talking while we hike they generally everyone has an ok time. So, we spent lots of time talking about Terraria and Hogwarts mystery. Blake has also decided he wants a beta fish and so we talked through every possible scenario imaginable concerning beta fish. This kid has talked our ears off over the last month! It’s so cute. I love to listen to his stories get bigger and bigger and crazier and crazier.2018-07-12 15.16.412018-07-12 15.17.342018-07-12 08.44.58-1The hike back looking over Glencoe Valley make me feel so small. But in the good way—like the God is so great and I am so lucky to be a tiny speck in this massive world. And I’m so lucky that these 3 other little specks are mine.2018-07-12 08.20.59-1I think we had a Hidden Valley hangover the rest of the day. Nothing else seemed quite so spectacular after that. We had a hard time even getting the kids out of the car again!

But one stop no one complained about is when we spotted a hairy coo!!! Finally! We’d been on the lookout our whole trip. We pulled right over to get pics of these funky cows with the Emo hair. Halle says they are her very favorite thing in Scotland. She got an adorable shirt with a golden hairy coo on the front.  And I got an ornament of a hairy coo playing the bagpipes for my Christmas tree.2018-07-12 11.10.31-12018-07-12 11.10.53-1We stopped to see Stirling Castle but it was kind of a bust. It was already closed and we walked to a castle viewpoint through a beautiful cemetery only to be totally blinded by the sun. Oh well. Indian food for Rusty and I and McDonalds for the kids for dinner.2018-07-12 20.07.14We arrived in Edinburgh around 9:30. It was still bright as day so we dropped our bags and went exploring a bit. What a cool city! Almost every building is made of stone giving it the monochromatic, imposing feeling. Time for bed in the Castle view hotel. This place was great. Suuuper high ceilings and 4 beds all in one big room.

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