The Badlands Continued

Continuing our drive through the Badlands on our Land That We Love Tour. It was a windy cold day and we were happy for our layers.

This was a couple we kept bumping into at each of the turnouts. They were from California and they had no fear of walking out on the rocks.

I was more comfortable on walkways.

Goodbye Badlands. We are so glad we came and made the loop.

And now we were off to Omaha, Nebraska for the night. My camera got a good rest as we drove to Omaha.

The Badlands at Dawn

On Friday September 24th we were up before dawn for our 39 mile tour of the Badlands. This would be day 4 on our Land That We Love Tour. On this day besides taking in the Badlands our drive would be a total of 469 miles and approximately 6-1/2 hours to our destination for the night in Omaha, Nebraska.

We saw some Big Horned Sheep at our first stop and along the way.

The 39 mile loop is easy to access off of Interstate 90. We started on the west end of the loop and returned to Interstate 90 on the eastern entrance. The loop has convenient parking areas along the way to stop and enjoy the vistas. We took advantage of each one. Several of the parking areas also have restrooms.

That little black smudge in this photo is a buffalo. I zoomed in as far as I could to get this shot.

We were so thrilled to have started our tour before it got light and we would recommend dawn in the Badlands. Sunset would probably be another lovely time of day to be here, too.

Our first stop along the way and we were already blown away by the amazing landscape. I will be posting several days worth of photos from the Badlands.

We found ourselves reciting part of Psalm 19 and praising the Creator of it all as we began our day here…

The Law of the Lord is Perfect

The heavens declare the glory of God,
    and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech,
    and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words,
    whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth,
    and their words to the end of the world.
In them he has set a tent for the sun,
    which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
    and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
    and its circuit to the end of them,
    and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect,
    reviving the soul;
the testimony of the Lord is sure,
    making wise the simple;
the precepts of the Lord are right,
    rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
    enlightening the eyes;
the fear of the Lord is clean,
    enduring forever;
the rules of the Lord are true,
    and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
    even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
    and drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
    in keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors?
    Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
    let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
    and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
    be acceptable in your sight,
    Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

Rapid City and Wall, North Dakota

George Washington

We parked in downtown Rapid City with intentions of eating ‘Linner’ at one of the restaurants there. Note: this downtown area is a pay for parking area. You can use coins or credit card to park. The Italian restaurant we were interested in was not going to open until 5pm. We tried another restaurant but it was not good for us after a busy day of traveling and sight seeing (too loud and noisy and fried). Downtown Rapid City has a unique tourist feature with the Presidents of the United States memorialized on every corner. We were only able to photograph a few of them. This would be an amazing teaching moment for your homeschooled students or any students.

John Quincy Adams

James Monroe

William Howard Taft

Harry S. Truman

Lyndon B. Johnson

Ronald Reagon

George Bush

We said our adieus to Rapid City and got on to I-90 heading to Wall, South Dakota where we would have dinner at the Red Rock in Wall and spend the night. It was a down home restaurant with down home service and menu. We made it there in time to enjoy a seat next to a couple of gals who were traveling home from Pennsylvania to Oregon and who were originally from Southern California as are Dear and Me! A wonderful serendipitous meeting with enjoyable conversation.

All along the road to Wall you’ll see these signs every few miles reminding or enticing you to stop in Wall!

We stayed the night in a cabin in Wall at Frontier Cabins.

We filled up with gasoline at a Shell station just off of I-90 at $3.159 a gallon. Our lodging at the cabin with tax cost us $119.90.

We were ready to leave the following morning before dawn to discover and enjoy the Badlands. These cabins were on the highway that leads you to the west entrance to the Badlands loop.

It was a full and draining day but good. South Dakota has a lot to offer and we could have spent more than one night to enjoy all the area has to offer.

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

On Thursday September 23, 2021 we drove from Sheridan Wyoming and entered South Dakota on our Land That We Love Tour. We approached the Memorial on the south side through Custer City on Highway 16. As we wound our way up the road to get to the Mount Rushmore National Memorial we started to see many interesting rock formations on the mountain sides.

We entered the Memorial and found a parking spot and walked up some steps to the main entrance.

No fee to walk in and the only fee we paid was $5.00 for our parking spot since we are seniors, $10.00 if you aren’t a senior.

Getting closer to the main attraction.

All the states are represented with their state flag and a plaque with the year they were admitted into the Union.

To prove I was there.

We found different vantage spots to zoom in for a closer view.

To read the history of the making of this monument click HERE.

This last shot was on our way out and down to Rapid City, South Dakota to look for a spot to enjoy some Linner (Linner is the meal we have that combines lunch and dinner later in the afternoon). On this route you go through Keystone which looked like a fun spot to explore but we had reached our limit so we just kept driving the 40 minutes to get to downtown Rapid City. More about Rapid City and where we ended up eating in a future post.

Back to the present we find ourselves in the last week of October 2021. We’ve had some powerful winds and leaves are falling and blowing around to find a resting spot. Hope all is well in your corner.

On Our Way to South Dakota

Heading East on our Land That We Love Tour we left Sheridan and traveled I-90 planning on taking the back way to Mount Rushmore via Highway 16. Before we got to Highway 16 we pulled off at Buffalo to mail some postcards and enjoyed the historic downtown main drag which I seem to have forgotten to take photos of. After Buffalo we stopped in Gillette, Wyoming to fill the tank with gas at $3.339.

The welcome to South Dakota sign seems to have been filled with bullet holes.

The rock formations started getting interesting as we came into Custer, South Dakota.

We saw the Crazy Horse Monument from the highway.

Next post will be an overload photo post of Mount Rushmore.

On Thursday September 23rd the miles driven were about 312 with a long stop at Rushmore. We were still in Mountain Time. We hit Mountain Time in Missoula, Montana. Wyoming is also in Mountain Time as is most of South Dakota.

Badlands National Park

Our Land That We Love Tour started in the Badlands National Park in South Dakota on Friday morning, September 24th. We drove the 39 mile loop and stopped at every scenic turnout.

Amazing morning at Badlands National Park. We managed to arrive at dawn and were awe-struck. On Friday our day ended in Omaha, Nebraska.

Psalm 19:1-6

The heavens declare the glory of God,
    and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech,
    and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words,
    whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth,
    and their words to the end of the world.
In them he has set a tent for the sun,
    which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
    and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
    and its circuit to the end of them,
    and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

Praising God today for all He has done…

On to South Dakota

We continued on our Land That We Love Tour into South Dakota today, Thursday September 23rd. It was a long day and I’ll leave you with just one postcard. Later I will document more fully all we have seen. No time for the computer on Thursday.

We loved getting to this spot which was a ‘bucket list’ must see in person destination. Mission accomplished.

I have many photos from Mount Rushmore so be forewarned that I’ll be sharing them soon.

Friday we head to a new time zone.

Where in the World…

…is our traveling family?

My youngest brother and his family are having an RV adventure around the USA (Wholly-Rollin) for who knows how long. My sister Lana and her hubby Steve met up with them in South Dakota the 16th through the 19th of September and here are a couple photos I “borrowed” from them. Leonard, Mandy, Hope and Andrew will soon make it to our neck of the woods the beginning of October. Hope and Andrew are being RV schooled enjoying God’s amazing creations around the USA. They have just left the Yellowstone Area and the Grand Tetons heading to Montana.

Leonard and Lana, the babies of our family. They are twins. The Black Hills of South Dakota.

Meanwhile back in our neck of the woods,  Jaymison and Addyson enjoying the beginning of Autumn.

Addy is enjoying a carrot fresh out of the garden and JJ is always pleased to be seated on any piece of machinery!

After I got the framework of the puzzle done and a lot of the interior done, Dear helped me finish up this Matryoshka Doll puzzle. He did leave the final pieces for me. It was a tough one but satisfying to see it completed. This is our 7th COVID-19 puzzle in the books!

Have you taken up puzzles lately? Do you grow carrots in your garden? Are you part of the RVing world? What’s the favorite place you’ve traveled to in the USA?

Road Trip Re-Cap

It’s time for ABC Wednesday and we are on the letter R.

Thank you to the ABC team!

I’ll share a few snapshots of my daughter and my road trip across the U.S.A. The reason for our road trip was to return her and her car to Jacksonville, North Carolina to be ready for her husband’s return from Afghanistan. The reunion will be rewarding for them. We left Seattle on April 27th and arrived at our final destination on May 4th.

In the meantime it’s interesting living in a Marine populated city with license plates from all over the U.S.A. I will leave Jacksonville on Thursday and re-unite with my Dear in Orlando, Florida for a conference he is attending and then finally be back home later in May.


Day one on the road. We stopped in Spokane Valley for lunch with my son and his girl friend and then carried on.

P1050070Day one we drove across Washington and Idaho and into Montana!

Bozeman 013-001

Day two started with snow in Bozeman, Montana. Retreating was not an option so we returned to the road hoping for good traction and no sliding on the road.

SeaJack #2 009Day two ended in Rapid City, South Dakota. We drove across Montana, down into Wyoming and across to South Dakota. Three states a day became our road trip theme. The other theme we did not want to repeat was snow but when we woke up in Rapid City to start our third day on the road snow was whipping side ways in some extreme wind conditions. Again retreat was not an option.

P1050082We learned to rely on Rest areas in many states across the U.S.A. They appeared just when we needed them most and they were all clean and well maintained. This is how the snow was sticking because of the severe winds in and around Rapid City.

SeaJack #3 012

Many times along the roads that were unknown to us our minds recalled the reassuring verses in the New Testament from Matthew that read…

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?

I also would sing in my head…His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me.

P1050086Day three ended in Nebraska which means we traveled across South Dakota, into Iowa, and finished in Nebraska.

P1050111Day four we left Nebraska, entered Iowa again, and headed to Kansas City Missouri to meet up with a bloggy friend for RIBS!

Collages7After a great lunch and meeting Pam face to face along with her daughter we continued on to our stop for the night which would be just outside St. Louis, Missouri in the state of Illinois.  Day four ended up being a four state day!

P1050182On Day five our goal was to reach Hendersonville, Tennessee. We traveled along some rock lined highways and other areas full of green trees from Illinois into Kentucky and then down to Tennessee.

SeaJack #6 002

On day Six we would only travel in two states Tennessee and North Carolina. Our goal was to take a scenic road to Asheville, North Carolina nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains for a two day retreat and rest before we traveled the final five hours to Jacksonville, North Carolina (Camp Lejeune Marine Base).

SeaJack #6 010Our scenic route took us through some towns that surprised us with their weird attractions not so much rural charm.

SeaJack #6 019Finally after passing a few attractions like these in Pigeon Forge we entered some refreshing views like these.

SeaJack #6 027We were rewarded after our sixth day of travel with dinner at the Omni Grove in Asheville, North Carolina with beautiful views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

SeaJack #6 126 If you’d like to see more photos from this grand Inn click here.

Biltmore 066Our seventh day was spent at the Biltmore Estate and Gardens. The azaleas at the Biltmore were in their glory. I will be posting more about our day at the Biltmore in the future.

P1050206On day eight of our travels we reached our final destination in Jacksonville, North Carolina, home of MCCS Camp Lejeune. We checked into our hotel and started the planning lists for securing an apartment asap and setting up a temporary home for Katie and Andrew upon Andrew’s return and homecoming from Afghanistan. I’m happy to report that I’m preparing this post from that apartment with wifi and all the bare essentials are in place for Katie and Andrew to live comfortably for the next few months. I might have even lost a pound or two carrying boxes up the three flights of stairs to their third floor apartment. (no elevators)

Road trip mission accomplished. Semper Fi!

Relief and Rejoicing upon Andrew’s Return soon to commence!


SeaJack Day #3

I might be sounding like a broken record but we woke up to some more severe weather conditions in Rapid City, South Dakota. When the sun broke through we were brave enough to make a run for it. While we waited for the car to warm up and melt off the ice/snow on the windshield the wind was so strong that our car was rocking. I’m so sad I didn’t get a photo of the snow blowing horizontally. Very little snow accumulated on the ground. It accumulated on signs, windows, one side of the tree trunks, etc.

P1050082These are the welcome and information signs at a rest area stop in South Dakota.

We saw whitecaps on irrigation ponds as we continued east on I-90.

1538676_750416558918_7477388747956774918_nToday we crossed the state of South Dakota heading East from Rapid City. We smiled as we passed an exit that said this was the home town of John Thune, senator from South Dakota. His brother Bob was our pastor for a few years in Huntington Beach, California. Bob Thune is an exceptional teacher of God’s Word. We also passed the exit for the home of Laura Ingalls Wilder. We waved, Willow! Wish we could have gone out of our way the 50 miles to see it.

We headed South at Sioux Falls, S.D. and finally made it into Iowa.

SeaJack #3 012

SeaJack #3 015The Missouri River in Iowa.

P1050086We traveled in three states again today, South Dakota, Iowa and Nebraska. Tonight we are staying south of Omaha, Nebraska.


It was a very long travel day today and we didn’t get to our hotel until after 6:00 P.M. Since it was Tuesday our regular day at home to go out for Mexican food we found a Mexican restaurant close to the hotel for our later than usual dinner. We are beat and happy to have been carried along by the prayers of our friends and family today. Bless you all. We have a nice place to lay our heads. We are really looking forward to meeting up with Pam a dear bloggy friend and her daughter in Kansas City tomorrow for lunch.

We have learned that we need to be flexible with our plans when we have to deal with changing weather patterns. We had planned to see Mt. Rushmore today before we hit the road to Nebraska but the weather proved to be too severe to enjoy that extra side trip.

Our hearts go out to all those who have suffered in the path of tornadoes and other severe weather this week.