Bismarck, North Dakota

Housekeeping got turned away a couple times this morning as we caught up on some sleep. When we were caught up it was time to meet Judy and head south.

Judy is a mother of three and grandmother of four. Her son Chris follows our progress, when he saw we made it to Minot he called his mom from Fargo and asked her to give us a ride. It worked with her schedule and we were set. One of her granddaughters was going to come, but it didn’t work out. She even had the day off school for hunting season. You see hunting season opens at noon on Friday in North Dakota, so the kids in Minot get the day off school.

Neither of us had tried Walleye before, lucky for us we were in Walleye country. In fact, only a few miles from Minot rests the world’s biggest Walleye in Garrison, ND. We went there, admired its grandeur and beauty, then got some photos. Then we went to get some lunch just down the steet. To make a potentially good story into a lame story, we didn’t order Walleye. We ordered burgers. Lucky for us Judy invited us back to Minot for a big Walleye cookout in the summer.

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Judy continued to drive us towards Bismarck. We talked about she's planning to start a wedding planning business with one of her friends in Minot. So if you’re getting married anytime soon around Minot, look her up.

We arrived at the capitol building in the mid-afternoon, had a look around and got some photos before parting ways.

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After saying bye to Judy we needed to find a way south to Pierre.

The Anue Family

Lisa brought her two young kids Josh and Karsen to meet us at the capitol building in Bismarck. Josh (9) and Karsen (6) seemed a little shy at first, then we asked if they wanted to do some jump shots and they broke out of their shells.

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After walking around the capitol building area we realized it was cold, so we headed to Lisa’s place. We made a pit stop at the Lewis and Clark monument in town along the way to her suburban home. The plan was to wait an hour or so until her husband Jeff got off work, then pack up the family and head south for the night. Jeff got delayed at work, he even got to hold the Fed-Ex plane, so we got a chance to play street hockey.



Lisa set us up with some pizza, video games and driveway sports. Jeff was home and we were ready to go. The six of us, and their dog Gizmo packed into the Honda Pilot and headed to South Dakota.

Lisa, Mark, Josh and Karsen are such an awesome family. Going on the little family road trip with them is easily one of the highlights from the trip so far. Their hospitality and generosity made it feel like we were part of the family, not just some guests for the day. The kids are hilarious too. Karsen told us how she doesn’t like McDonalds because they put owls, eagles and hawks into the nuggets. Then about five minutes later she’s calls out from the back seat “I want McDonalds for supper”. Josh got our attention when he told his mom that he wants to go hitchhike around America. We assured him it’s not a good idea and to wait until he’s much older. Then we called ourselves a lawyer.

The drive was fun and included all the typical driving with kids events. “Are we there yet” began about 20 minutes into the three hour drive and continued until arriving in Pierre. When the kids weren’t glued into their DVD players it was non-stop games of telling jokes, bugging mom and dad, asking questions and taking photos. In other words it was a lot of fun.

We got to Pierre around 10PM, but held off on capitol photos until the morning. The six of us split into two hotel rooms, but hung out for a couple more hours. Josh and Karsen got some ice cream for a late-night snack, so they served as the entertainment. We even had a game of hotel room hide and seek.

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We now know a new recipe for entertainment and fun: Start with a late night, mix in some kids, add two servings of ice cream, wait 10 minutes for results and enjoy.