I just got home from a truly wonderful day of time spent together as a family.
We have been participating in the ND State Parks 12 Months 12 Hikes Challenge. For this month's hike, we set our sites on Lewis and Clark State Parks Southern Trail System. The park is just outside Williston. As Amelia and I have never been out there, we decided it would be a good idea, as we also had to go out west to pick up the camper from Mom and Dad for our upcoming family road trip.
We left Bismarck a mere 45 minutes after originally planned (perhaps a personal best!) after grabbing some breakfast burritos. We started listening to a book called “Bridge to Teribithia” by Katherine Paterson. I knew it was an old book about two kids, but I was actually thinking about a different book, Zathura when I helped pick it out.
Anyway, 3 1/2 hours later, we were getting hangry and decided to stop at this weird combination of stores just outside New Town called United Quality Cooperative. Basically, it was a hardware store mixed with a convenience store on steroids. I ended up getting One Sassy Pickle and a couple of sliders.
After our lunch, we got to the park and got to hiking. It was a pretty nice day - light breeze and not too hot. The trail itself was pretty basic with the most notable feature being a short tunnel under the road. The tunnel got me thinking about this old tunnel and bridge that was nearby. Once we were back in the car, we looked it up and found it was only a few miles out of the way from our original planned route.
We headed toward Williston for some refreshment and ended up getting some froyo from My Swirl. The patio was oddly shaded but very nice.
Back on the road, we headed toward the Fairview Lift Bridge. One phone call and roundabout later we were there. We walked across the lift bridge and made it through the tunnel. On the way back we got to teach the boys about putting locks on fences and symbolism. I am pretty sure Owen got it by the time we made it back to the car. The bridge ended up being the highlight of the trip for me.
We made it Dickinson and picked up the camper from Dad. This is such a cool pop-up tent camper. We then headed to Phat Fish Brewery for some grub.
The brewery was fairly low key, but they had a really nice patio area replete with outside activities, including cornhole. Owen and I paired off against Amelia and William while we waited for our food. Again, just really nice family chill time.
Once we got on the road, it wasn't long before both the boys fell asleep. Amelia and I just discussed life and before long we made it back home. We unhitched the camper, got the boys to bed, and started our nightly routine.
Off topic: last week's favorite new recipe was the spinach and artichoke pizza Amelia found to use up all the extra spinach we had from last week.