Monday, July 22, 2013

Go West, Days 6-8: Kansas... so people, like, live here?

I know some of you have been wanting to hear about more than one day at a time, and here is your chance! The next few days of our trip were relatively low-key, so I have combined them all into one post...

Day 6
Travel days really mess with my photo-taking average. Up until now, I’ve taken around 800 shots. Nope, I’m not kidding. I took over 400 just on the 4th. Today I took 4. Seriously messing with my mojo here.


The drive was rather uneventful. Probably the most notable thing was that we discovered that we were overusing the generator on the RV. In other words, it quit on us. As in, no A/C for anyone but the driver and front seat passenger. And it’s 100 degrees.

And as an added bonus, when we got checked in at the campground, we discovered that the truck battery was dead. Hmmmmm.

Other than that, though, nothing too exciting today. The kids were happy to get out and play in the playground here at the KOA. I have to say, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the campgrounds. I won’t say I *love* camping, but I will say that RVing is… more acceptable than I thought. Ha.

Day 7
Kansas, oh Kansas, what can I say?

No, seriously, there is pretty much nothing to say about our stay in Kansas.

I did laundry. At home, this would be a chore (“Oh for heaven’s sake, do you kids really need to wear clothes every day? I just got the laundry room empty! GAAAAAAAAAAAH!”), but on an RV trip this is a vacation in itself (“No really, Honey. I will spend the morning doing laundry. You just stay here and build Legos and ENJOY the kids.”). (PS – I don’t think he bought that line. But he did let me go do laundry by myself.)

Really, though, this was just a day to relax and catch up on some rest and cleaning.


While I drove us to the poor house at the laundry room (Seriously! Each load was approximately $4 to wash and dry. I did SIX LOADS.), Mr. Fantastic and the kids completely cleaned, swept, etc, in the RV. This was followed by a nap… for Mr. Fantastic. Lamb decided to hang out and read, and the boys and I went for a walk to the fishing pond.

I don't know what these flowers are, but they were growing all along the ground near the pond.


And THEN… it was time to get our MOVIE on!!!!! “Despicable Me 2” baby! Woohoo! This was our second attempt at taking Roo to a movie theater… and our first success. He LOVED it. And we did too. It was a nice way to A) spend an afternoon in Kansas, and B) beat the heat (over 100 degrees again).

After the movie we walked around the mall, and the kids found this gem. (Daddy is a big softie.)


I would never have splurged on this, but they had so.much.FUN! I’m glad we did it.


Tonight we decided to get the RV all ready to go, so we could try to get on the road BEFORE 11 AM. Mr. Fantastic (who LOVES the campground camaraderie) was chatting it up with our “neighbor” and found out that the winds can get fierce as we head west. The guy told him that the earlier you get across the plains the better, so our goal was to get on the road by 8:00.

Here goes nothin’! Goodnight, all!

Day 8
Bye-bye, land of Dorothy… Hellllllllllooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Denver! I haven’t been to Colorado since I was a teenager, but I absolutely LOVED it then and have been SO.DARN.EXCITED about coming back!

This is where I had planned to live. My senior year in high school, my sister-in-law took a job at Colorado University in Denver. She would be graduating with her Ph.D. in June, and then she and my brother would move out west, shortly after their baby—my first nephew—was born. My other brother already lived in Seattle. It seemed like the perfect time for a western move for me, too. Unfortunately, that all changed in January, when my sweet nephew was diagnosed in utero with a rare heart defect. The doctors advised my brother and sister-in-law that the altitude in Colorado might not be good for the baby’s health, so she let go of the job and they stayed in Ohio. Between that and my high school sweetheart attending college in Indiana, I decided to stay close as well. Bye-bye, western dreams.

But now we are heading back out, even if it is just for a few days. I am SO EXCITED!

The guy who told us about the wind wasn’t kidding. In fact, this was all we saw for about 30 miles…

Just a few more miles to go until our next turn (This was about 100 miles into our trip for the day)...
We saw several patches like this. Fires set by cigarettes?

At least it's nice and brisk outside today...

The kids continue to impress me with how well entertained they are on the road. Even Roo is enjoying himself, though he is becoming slightly more high-maintenance. I find that I am spending more and more time sitting near him and interacting with him. But hey, who wouldn’t get bored sitting in a car seat for hours on end?

And now we are here in the beautiful state of Colorado. This is our only non-KOA campground on the way out to Yellowstone. Here we are staying at a state park, and it is FANTASTIC! I can’t wait to check it out more.

FREEDOM! (And yes, once again I had my ISO set way high to take photos in the RV and forgot to knock it back down when we went outside.)

See you tomorrow.

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