Sometimes you need to sit in a shoe

Seriously.  I wander off to go see what the little kids are doing?  And this is what the 13yo does.

Well, who *wouldn’t* want to climb into a shoe?  Duh.

Yes, the 6yo is a monkey.  Wish gymnastics classes weren’t so cost prohibitive.  Kid would totally thrive in gymnastics, and hey, would also help get his energy out.

This girl and her riding critters.  We had to go check out the other children’s museum.


Had to pose after having fun building, well, something.  Was walls, a castle, and who knows what else.

Most of the fun is knocking it all over.

They had fun at the children’s museum.  They weren’t exactly thrilled when I told them time was up and we had to go.


Mining Tour, Part 7

Now on to the jail!  The kids kinda didn’t want to stop here.  But since I was the only one driving, I outvoted them.  Once they got over the whole stopping in a random little town thing, they had fun.  It’s a super fantastic one, The Deer Lodge Museum.  An extra fun bonus?  You buy your admission and tickets, and do your thing.  But!  Keep your receipt!  Keep your receipt and you can go back one more time within the year following your receipt date!  Which you may need, it’s a whole lot of museums (yes, more than one!) to get into.

Of course they all climbed into the old car.  Of course.  And who’s at the wheel?  Yup, the car crazy child.


It’s so cool.   Like Shawshank Redemption, but smaller.  So neat to be able to wander around it though.


Look at how thick those outside walls are!



This flat spot is where the gym and classroom used to be.  No longer there, but still.





An old shift schedule up on a wall.  Still almost filled in from back in the 70’s.

Right when you walk into the building.

The visitation room.




The medical office.  They did all manner of things there.  That tripped out the kids, that there weren’t different rooms/offices for each specialty.



Oh yes, the riot.  Yes, my 10yo correctly identified a bazooka.  I’m not sure whether to be proud, or a little concerned.  Going with proud for the moment.
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Things they shouldn’t have made in their cells.  Lots of shivs, eh?  Certainly can’t fault their creativity.


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Who knew circuit breakers and typewriters were so neato?


This is where they had the execution area.  Trippy, eh?

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Hahaha.  Their facial expressions crack me up.  This was basically solitary.  Bad guys lived here.
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Then we had enough time to check out the caboose here.  A little different than the one in Ritzville, but still cool.
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Yup.  Story of my life.wp_20160812_060 wp_20160812_061 wp_20160812_062

The last spike.  And I swear they dressed themselves.  Just so happened they chose all red, that was amusing.

Mining Tour, Part 8

I said I had a lot of photos, and we did a lot of things.  I wasn’t lying.

We had to leave the jail museum before they closed, I needed enough time to get us to this next campground.  Funny enough, our site was #13 here as well.  Guess we had a thing with 13’s this trip.  Got all set up at a cute site with an almost flat spot, and the vault toilet was mere steps away from our site.  Yay for convenience!  😀

Here the tent looks almost small.  Yeah, not so much.  That morning sun sure was bright.  The 10yo helped me set up most of the tent the night before and helped with most of the teardown (12yo was having some issues).  We started getting pretty good at set-up and teardown by the end of it.  It’s awkward as heck because the tent and tarp are so big, but hey, practice makes perfect, right?

Getting all packed up.  Hi, Batman!
And see how pretty we left the site?  Yup, leave it cleaner than we found it.


So then on to the opal mining.  Wasn’t as fun as the sapphire mining.  There were some… issues.  Opals are harder to find when you’re cranky.  A lovely little gentleman (like 17yo) took pity on me and picked out a few opal-laden rocks for the kids for us to take home.
They bring the rocks in from their mine, and you sort through.  Use a spray bottle/water to find the differences in rock.

View of the mine from the freeway.  Not hard to get to at all.  Just, in the middle of nowhere.  Also?  Minimal radio stations for more than a few hours here.  Very few country stations even.

Yes, we even took photos of the map dealies at the rest area.  Because hey, they had cool stuff on them!  Things to check out next time.
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The 8yo wanted to take a photo with my cell phone.  Add in the bright sun, you get a grainy photo.  The 10yo was quite thrilled with himself.  Ahem.  And my hair doesn’t look too bad for day four of camping.  I tried washing it with my shampoo with heated up water into a tub that morning, but it’s just not the same as washing my hair in the shower.  I tried though, so I wasn’t *as* much of a greaseball.

Hey look, another map!  With more cool stuff!  At the next rest area we stopped at.  Yeah, we saw a lot of rest areas.  What struck me?  Most of the ones on the Montana freeways have single stalls – none of that 18 stalls in a row deal that Washington tends to do.
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We made it home!  Barely, it felt like.  wp_20160813_033

The odometer when we finally got home.  Forgot the trip odometer turns over at 999 miles.  So yup, 1133.4 miles in four days.  We did it.

So.  Eight installments with our photos of four days.  Not bad, eh?  Wonder what I could do with more time, a smidge more planning, and their cooperation.  Maybe we’ll see this spring/summer.