Moving right along from Elkhart, we were on our way to St. Louis. It's about 375 miles from point to point and honestly, that was more than we want to drive in a single day. With stops and whatnot, we have learned to plan for an overall average of 45mph. That means, 375 miles will take us a little over 8 hours of driving.
|Our overall route|
We did have some fun during the drive. First up, we drove past a sign for the "World's Largest Covered Wagon". This was our first goofy roadside attraction and we couldn't have been more excited. Silly, but fun.
|Family selfies are hard without a selfie-stick|
|Gasp! I did the unthinkable and asked someone to take our picture.|
|Minigolf at Double J|
|Ice cream, normal|
|Beer, not usual but not unusual|
|Liquor, getting unusual|
|Condoms, wait what...? in a camp store?|
|That's not the McDonald's Arch|
|Logan's big cheese because of not being in a car seat|
|Waiting for the train|
|St. Louis Metro Train|
|Directions were well marked|
|Jefferson National Expansion Memorial|
|Flag hanging from the ceiling|
|You pass a famous church on the way|
|The Gateway Arch|
|We fit, but glad there aren't much more of us|
|I lie, it was terrifying|
|RV park in the middle/left; circle pond on the right (I'll talk about this later)|
|630' up. Between Chicago, here, and later Colorado- we've been sooooo high on this trip.|
|A barge on the Mighty Mississippi River|
|Just some of the construction|
|Another sportsing stadium|
|The family that selfies together, stays together- right?|
|We were all mesmorized.|
|Mural/sculpture depicting the designers, workers, and politicians that made the Arch happen|
|Monument to the Dream movie.|
|I know exactly what the fox says- but I can't tell.|
|Arch & Moon|
|Selfie. Are we surprised?|
|Vandalism. Ugh, you suck.|
|Ending on a high-note.|
|This reminded me of Cinderella's carriage|
|Fried Cheeseburger Wraps - kind of terrible|
|Butter Cake, a St. Louis hallmark|
We spent a few days really doing nothing at the RV park. It's amazing how life just sort of happens. I worked, the kids were kids, and Mandie did her thing. I think it wasn't until Friday evening did we learn of another "attraction" and that is the Gateway Geyser. Interestingly enough, we saw the circular pond when we were up in the arch but didn't know what it was. Pretty impressive, though incredibly difficult to photograph on the drab day (white water on a gray sky).
|Thar she blows.|
|This is where Paige went, "What are we here to see? Hills? Just hills?"|
* not her exact words, but her face told a story.
|Picture from inside, showing what it looked like back in da day|
|Selfie with a mound|
|This mound had 2 sets of steps like these|
|Logan picked flowers|
|This was Logan's favorite part of the mound|
|Fireworks. I never did find out where they were from.|
|Near one of the entrances|
|Waiting for Momma to wrap up the pass buying|
But it was HOTTTTTT.
|Hot turtle taking a dip|
|Misting fans were setup in different places|
|Mlinzi, the Drama Queen|
|Don't let him fool you; he's kind of terrible at map reading|
|Viewing underwater creatures|
|Yeah, I'm 12... what of it?|
|Train was cozy but cute|
|The kids trying to touch sting rays|
After all that, I am happy to say that we saved the best for last. We met up with our first Fulltime Family, Bunny and Eric Arnold. They were super sweet and talked to us for quite a while (all while we got eaten alive by mosquitoes!). It turns out that they were at Double J just before us, too. Unfortunately, they were leaving in the morning- but we had a nice chat and looked forward to catching up with them in Branson. No pictures of this meet up, but it happened and it was AWESOME!
Leaving from St. Louis, we headed to Branson, MO. Turns out that Branson bills itself as the "Live Entertainment Capital", but we weren't there for that. We were there for the Fulltime Families "NOT Back to School Rally"! More of that coming up...
As usually, there are many, many more photos on Flickr.