It’s easy to get focused on the final goal, rather than what we are seeing, feeling, and learning along the way. I know I am guilty of that in my every day life.
We even find ourselves doing that on our trip…driving to get somewhere and then remembering that the journey is part of the experience as well. Sometimes we don’t have a choice but to live in the moment, the stress of navigating directions, or a camper in rush hour traffic, seeing and hearing thunderstorms, having camper challenges, and listening to kids yell, laugh, and play.
We have driven 1100 miles in the past two days, traveling from Chicago to Rochester, MN, then to Wall, SD. We have had some fun stops along the way including Wisconsin Dells, where we had awesome Mac and Cheese, at the appropriately named, Mac and Cheese Shop, which was fixed so creatively! I ordered mine with chipotle chicken. We had to have cheese in Wisconsin!
Porter Sculpture Park
We searched Road Trippers for a fun activity heading into South Dakota because we learned the infamous Corn Palace was closed,. And we found a totally off the wall, yet perfect park, right off I-95. Porter Sculpture Park was so fun! The structures are handcrafted and there is a poem to go along with each. Although admittedly out there, and maybe a tad dark, Mr. Porter is an artist who lives in an old camper in the field with his designs. He is a true artist. He has a story and his own well of telling it. It is clear that he is doing exactly what he is supposed be doing.
Keeping the Kids Occupied
I have been asked a few times how the kids are doing with the drive, so I thought we’d share what is working. Both kids have a bag of craft supplies, and notebook of activities with printed sheets of hangman, dots, road games, and a map for them to track where we are and learn the capitals. (For me as well!). And we try to alternate activities to avoid getting bored.
Today’s Craft Challenge
Wall Drug is a famous tourist stop. In 1931, Ted Hustead and his wife, Dorothy, purchased the building with hopes of opening a pharmacy and store. After 5 years of trying and nearly failing, Dorothy had an idea. Mount Rushmore was opening soon and she saw people driving by. She knew that if she could only get them to stop, they would make it. Free Water. She created an advertisement along the highway, and from that point on, it became a successful business.
Today they have nearly 20,000 people come though daily. They still have free water and $.05 coffee and are known for their donuts.