After several hours driving and a few stops, we hit the Mississippi. We can see where it gets its nickname. Big brown river. We told the kids we'd cross it once more on the way back. Our stop for the night was just an hour drive west from there, Rochester, Minnesota. Christopher got a kick out of the fact that this place had the same name as home.
Along the way from South Haven, we went by Chicago and some of the worst roads we've ever been on - Indiana and Illinois. On the plus side, we were given the pleasure of paying tolls to ride those roads. Obviously they haven't put any of the past toll money to work - maybe ours will accomplish something less than a washboard.
Anyway, we spotted a Cabelas Outdoor store west of Chicago and took a detour in. Given what they have there (lots of hunting and fishing and camping stuff), Annie spent two hours shopping! Chris had to pull her out... We took advantage of their parking lot to eat lunch in the trailer, they owed us that much for what we spent.
A bit further down the road, in Wisconsin, we spotted a Camping World store, and again, Annie demanded that we stop. Chris thought Annie had been replaced with some magical outdoors woman. Anyway, another detour as we went in for 45 minutes, again making a donation to the great outdoors. We did pick up a pretty fun "washer" game. We'll let you all try it the next time we see you.
Next it was the Big Muddy as we crossed into Minnesota. The kids have commented several times as we pass from state to state about how every state so far looks about the same. Trees, fields, grass, etc. We think they'll be pleasantly surprised when we hit South Dakota where the scenery should change quite a bit.
Marissa quote of the day - "Riding in the car can get pretty boring, but the stops have been fun (Cabelas, Camping World, and the rest area vending machines, oh, and that River)"
The Ingall's history is up next. Talk to you in Walnut Grove.
All our love and take care.