Friday, September 9, 2016

Family Vacation 2016 - Black Hills, SD & Devil's Tower, WY

I'm back-posting here because I'd like to update our adopted seminarian, Br. David.  I figure this is a good way to let him and everyone else know what we've been up to!

August was a busy month!  Monica and I left to Denver August 9 & 10 to visit Colorado State University.  CSU has a Music Therapy program that Monica is interested in.  Out of state tuition is crazy expensive, but who knows what God may have in store.  We were able to take a little trip over to Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park.  Here are a few shots Monica took with her GoPro.

It was an incredible trip and a bit of a whirlwind, but it was fun to spend some time with my nature girl.  She loved the mountains and is seriously considering CSU.  I wouldn't be surprised if she ended up there.  Monica was definitely in her element.  I also found that CSU has a FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) group on campus.  We've had several amazing priests, youth ministers, and speakers go through the Twin Cities that are products of FOCUS so I definitely trust Monica in their hands!

After our 2 days in Denver, Monica returned to MN and I headed to Texas.  I stayed there for a week with TX Grandma cleaning up, helping her with her retirement paperwork, and trying to convince her to come back with me to MN.  It was a long week, but we finally made the 2 day drive back from Texas.  It was a fun road trip.  I'm so glad to have her here!

This was taken on Monica's birthday.  Unfortunately, her classes at Anoka Ramsey
started on August 22nd so she wasn't able to make our family vacation to the Black Hills.
She stayed home with TX Grandma and the dogs instead so she wouldn't miss classes.
We left for the Black Hills on the 20th and drove straight through to our cabin rental near Lead, SD.  We rented through VRBO and stayed at a beautiful cabin with 4 bedrooms that could accommodate up to 14 people.  It was great to have a place to come home to after sightseeing each day.  Here are some of the highlights:

A very windy stop at Chamberlain before crossing the Missouri River into western South Dakota.

A mandatory stop for dinner at Wall Drug....of course!

Girls enjoying the cabin kitchen.  Pretty nice digs, huh?

Trout fishing in Spearfish Creek.

Not even sure where we were!

Side trip to Rochford for trout fishing.

What trip to South Dakota is complete without a visit to Mt. Rushmore?

A side trip to Hot Springs where we also had the privilege of seeing a bison along the road!

Gabe finally was brave enough to try the water slides!

Being the good Mom, I actually fried up the trout the kids caught for one of our dinners.

Picnic lunch at the entrance to Devil's Tower in Wyoming.

Someone took a panorama.  

Prairie dog, mule deer, and Jr. Ranger free cake from the Rangers for the 100th Anniversary
of the National Park Service and free entrance to the park!
It was an incredible family trip.  And, of course, we hit the ground running when we returned by heading straight to the Minnesota Get-Together, the State Fair!  The girls worked the Caramel Apple Booth again, and Paul & I worked a ticket booth at the Midway to raise funds for the Band Boosters. Now we can check that off our bucket lists!


  1. Grace, I by chance popped over to your blog and saw these wonderful updates. You have been so busy and your children are growing up so fast. Sending you Christmas greetings and prayers for a blessed holiday season and New Year

    1. Cathy, so good to hear from you!! Thank you for stopping by to say "hello!" I've been working on our Year End Review, but have been busy with Advent.:) I'm doing Mathew Kelly's Best Advent Ever & it's AMAZING! Check it out.:)

      Lots of Love & Advent & Christmas Blessings,


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