Day 5 – 9/4 Shopping, Keystone Mine and Mt Rushmore at night

Woke up and first thing I did was start the GoPro on time-lapse to get the sun setting here, let’s hope it works, but if it doesn’t, we have another 10 possible attempts :).  We left the windows open last night as it was a bit cooler, so overnight was nice and cool, enough for a light blanket, which is nice to sleep.  Sipping my coffee now, hearing the cars pass by on the highway in front of our trailer and watching the sun come up.  Good morning!

Today was more of a get organized day, get things done day.  Kids worked on their school activities, Carol did laundry and worked on posting the video from our Day 1, I went for a run, then helped get stuff organized and helped the girls with school work. 

We were having internet issues as the campground wifi was not good, so I worked on getting our AT&T hotspot upgraded to more data.  This internet thing was very frustrating for me, once I finally got the AT&T part done, the Netgear device was not working, it kept saying I was not connected to the cell network (it turned out AT&T had a data block on my line).  I worked on that for hours, and no deal, it’s still not working.  That was extremely frustrating.  Around 2pm I decided to give up on that for the day, super frustrated.  So, I focused on getting the girls done with school, so we could go out and do something.  They were all done around 3pm, Carol was taking a nap by then.  I took Bella to the playground, and Bia was wrapping up work, so she followed soon after.  They played there for a bit, it was hot so Bella didn’t want to play too long.  Carol then showed up with Maggie, so we decided to go out. 

We went to Keystone, to the Big Thunder Mountain mine.  We did the mine tour, and tried some gold panning at the end.  That was a nice experience.  The mine tour was very cool, informative and interesting.  You go inside the actual mine and the kids were really into it. 

Gold panning is cool, but don’t expect to find a lot.  We did find like 5-6 little grains of gold so the girls were excited.

Bia was really into finding real gold. 

Bella was more into finding all kinds of pretty rocks :).

When we were done, we stopped by their restaurant for a drink.  We stayed outside at a picnic table which is in front of a fire place.  We chatted there for some time deciding what to do next.  Those moments are great, the girls were excited and telling stories, and talking about the mine, etc. 

We decided to go into town, walk around, find dinner then go see Mt Rushmore at night since we were so close.  The town is small, nice, and it had quite a lot of people.  We found a place to eat with a table outside, so we could be in the open and see what was going on.  Food was pretty decent too, we ordered tilapia, sirloin, and a Nacho Supreme with Buffalo ground beef, yum!  We had some local beer which was good as well.  While we ate, we talked to Bob and Judy, got caught up a bit.  Then Alex wanted to FaceTime, so we called him back.  He had a PowerPoint he wanted us to see while we were on the phone with him, so we opened it.  It was a slide show, with pictures of me and him, then the girls and Carol… it talked about our relationship as father and son, and as friends, and at the end, he asked if I’d be his best man at his wedding!  YES!!  Of course!  That was really cool, very emotional, I am filled with joy, very happy.  They now have a date for their wedding too, venue is selected and contracted.  Woohoo.  So happy for Alex, and Alexis. 

After we finished dinner, we got Ice Cream and went to Mt Rushmore, it was already dark.  It is cool to see it at night too, all you see is the faces in the mountain basically, so it has a different impact.  We didn’t stay much.  Went back, kids fell asleep in the truck, Bella didn’t wake up again, Bia got ready for bed and we were all out.

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