i am notorious for wanting to peek into (spend a lot of time combing through) gift shops associated with pretty much anywhere i go. it started as a child and i have fully inculcated that love into my children.
what has changed are the things i look for. when i was young, i looked for inexpensive trinkets i could potentially purchase on my own (or beg an accompanying adult to purchase for me, with varying results). when i was an adult, i looked for mementos for family and friends. now it's pretty much about what i think will be interesting for my family, namely the kids. (i am fortunate that steve looks after me and makes sure i have something extra nice on occasion, like the gorgeous venetian-style hand-blown glass bead necklace from monterey bay that i admired in the window and dismissed even trying it on because it was way too expensive but he got it for me anyway as a surprise and i just love it!)
diana looked for postcards for her star team buddies back in california, ander honed in on items related to the activity for the day (like a train set when we went on the grand canyon railroad), but i looked for the books.
here's the selection of what i purchased during our travels:
at the yosemite bug rustic mountain resort (though we never actually made it to yosemite)
national geographic kids: national parks guide u.s.a. (diana loves the natgeo kids magazine so this was a given that she'd enjoy it)
stella and roy go camping by ashley wolff
in williams, AZ, as part of our grand canyon adventure
haunted highway: the spirits of route 66 by ellen robson and dianne freeman
it happened at grand canyon by todd berger
at the route 66 museum in clinton, OK
annie mouse's route 66 adventure: a photo journal by anne slanina
at cumberland caverns in mcminnville, tennessee
caves by stephen kramer
caves: mysteries beneath our feet by david harrison
at historic crab orchard museum & pioneer park in tazewell, VA
appalachian abc's by francie hall
pioneer life from a to z by bobbie kalman
mary kelly's diary 1861-1864
children's tea parties: traditions, recipes, tips and tidbits (a remember when book) by theodore newport
between those and the postcards and other objects of interest, we've been discussing some great memories of our cross-country travel.