Tag Archives: South Dakota

South Dakota in October

Tomorrow morning we head to Galveston with our grandson Weston for his Great Galveston Adventure! Guess I better get this South Dakota goodness written down before I once again sink into Blogging Never-Never Land!) So –
Here, in no particular order, are 10 South Dakota October Things we love!
1. Harvest Time. Oh, my! The combines!!
We learned a lot about how the combines work, how both corn and soybeans are harvested, and how hard the farmers work out here (and everywhere! Farming is HARD, folks!). Not only did we get to watch combines in fields as we traveled around, we even got to watch them in the backyard field! (They were working at 9 o’clock at night and I didn’t get any pictures of those headlights. But here they are getting ready for the dew to dry so they could start again!)

2.Long Walks. Long Straight Walks. Long straight soul enriching walks.
‘nuf said

3. The Community Dinner. Howard is a small town – well under 1000 folks at the last count. And like most small communities, they take good care of their neighbors. The first Wednesday of each month there is a Community Dinner at the local Methodist Church, hosted by a variety of local organizations. October’s ‘organization’ was a neighborhood group that Don and Jenny are a part of. SO – we got to join them in preparing Chili with all the fixings for about 50 folks who came out to enjoy the evening.
What fun to get to know their neighbors and to see a bit of ‘love your neighbors’ in action!

4. The Corn Palace down the road a piece in Mitchell-
The palace itself was closed when we were there, but we still got to enjoy the amazing murals all made from (wait for it….)CORN!
It was especially fun to see one that was still in progress –
Can we call that “Corn by Number?”

5. Games – We can’t get together with SOWER friends without some game playing!
Don & Jenny introduced us to “Fast Track” – which is like, but not the same as, Pegs and Jokers, which is like, but not the same as SORRY. Confused yet? Think how we feel! Glad our aging brains could be taught some new tricks, though!

6. Bawling calves. While this might not fit into the “Things we love about SD” category, it does fall into the “South Dakota in the Fall” column. About this time every year the area ranchers divide out the calves from their mommas. The mommas are moved to their winter pastures, while the young’uns learn to live life without mom nearby. Needless to say, when that happens to about 250 pairs of cattle on the next farm over, there is a bit of an ongoing ruckus as the ‘babies’ are moaning about being deserted. Rumor has it that the mommas are over in their new pasture feeling like (some) moms feel when school starts in the fall!
(Full disclosure – these are not the bawling calves. But they are representative of the cattle in the neighborhood!)

7. Dignity. We took a little road trip to see this well-known statue located in a rest stop in Chamberlain, SD. So stunning!

8. Also in Chamberlain is the St. Joseph’s Indian School and the Akta Lakota Museum and Cultural Center.
Very interesting and well worth the stop.

9. Sunsets
Does my heart good every single time!

10. Dear Friends! How kind our God is to enrich our lives with beautiful friends around the country!!
For us, the best part of South Dakota are these good friends, who share devotions with us, laugh with us, support us in prayer, and love on us regardless of where we are in the country! So glad we could spend this week with them!

If you’d like to see some additional photos of our time in South Dakota, here is a little slide show or you can check out the album HERE!

Thanks for coming along for my Ten Things! These just really scratch the surface of South Dakota in the Fall – you should check it out sometime!

Have a great weekend, and we’ll see you after our Great Galveston Adventure!

Quick Catch-up

Week One – Pre-meeting stuff at the SOWER office and some general down time.  Kinda laid back and all good!

Week Two – Meetings for Gary, meeting support for me.  A bit exhausting, but still a blessing. Naps were a necessity.


Week Three – Spending time with friends in South Dakota. More details to follow!


Week Four – Arrived in the Waco Area to spend a week with our kids and four grandsons.  The adventure is unfolding……



Stay tuned……

South Dakota Adventure Wrap-up

Our South Dakota Adventure is officially over, and it most certainly needs a bit of a recap! Don and Jenny did their very best to give us a true taste of SD life – and they did a great job!
The Weather –
Eastern SD was blessed with warmer than usual weather for most of October. Days were generally sunny and bright, and even the cloudy days were still filled with fun.

But let’s not forget that dust storm- SDDustStorm-18
(Aunty Em, Aunty Em…..)
And just this past week we were given a quick reminder about why we are headed south!

(But Pa – I can’t find Mary or Carrie!!!!)

The Delicacies Don and Jenny made sure we enjoyed (or at least experienced) lots of the local delicacies. Like goodies at the Canova Annual Mountain Oyster Feed.

Let’s just say the ham was excellent!

We enjoyed fresh pheasant, thanks to some local hunters (and the fact we were there for the opening of pheasant season, which is a pretty big deal in South Dakota!) and a great rib eye steak dinner (remember, we’re in cattle country) with friends. Untitled
And just last night we went to the Howard Country Club and I had Chislic – a true Eastern South Dakota specialty.

Now those pretty delicious!

The Activities – Remember the skeet shooting? Untitled
Fun to watch, fun to try!
We took some great walks (though not quite enough to balance out the amount of the goodies we ate) and garnered a fair bit of interest from the local residents.

Jenny and I went horseback riding with Emily – Untitled
And I was reminded that I hadn’t been on a horse in about 8 years.

(What, you say your horse is limping? Why, I’ll be happy to walk with him back to the barn…..)

Gary & Don got to do some cattle rustling. We were checking out the clouds on the horizon when suddenly about 50 young steers came trotting into view. Untitled
And they did not belong there! After alerting the rancher across the street (just in case he hadn’t noticed) the guys jumped in their trucks to help head them off at the pass.

They were quickly joined by the official cowboys and all the cattle were secured within the hour. (Although they didn’t all make it home for a couple of days!).

And let’s not forget that pick-up truck ride and our weekly jaunts into Sioux Falls. Untitled
Along with getting that renovation done, we’ve had a great month discovering South Dakota!
We awoke this morning to this beautiful sunrise –

hooked up the truck to the house Untitled
and bid a fond farewell to Howard, SD

and our dear friends! Untitled
We might not make it back to Howard (and all our new friends there) for a couple of years, but we’ll be working with Don & Jenny next month, so I don’t have to panic about that just yet!

Real time update – tonight we’re in a Wally World parking lot in York, Nebraska (along with several other RVs and a couple of big trucks). Nebraska is one of the two states we haven’t been in yet (North Dakota being the other), so I’m happy to report that we think Nebraska is one very lovely state!


Putting the pieces of the puzzle back

Ok – we’re down to less than 48 hours before departure and everyone is getting very quiet. Jenny is busy wrapping up some painting chores, Don is hustling between the building and their rig, returning items to the rig and moving items to store in the building. The laundry is humming and the vacuum is getting ready to roar. We are simply trying to put the house back together.
With the exception of one piece of bead board that we need for the entry step, the floor is done. Complete. Finis.
And from the back to the front

Pretty amazing, huh?
Here are some of the detail shots –
That man of mine does some fine work, doesn’t he?

We can’t believe how spacious it looks. But of course, there isn’t any furniture in it either! And that’s where the puzzle pieces come in. Once we got all the furniture out, it seemed like it would be a good opportunity to actually move some items around. Raise your hand if you haven’t moved a piece of furniture in the last 10 years. Yep, that’s the life of an RV’er. Gary helped the process along by deciding that the sofa had seen enough wear and tear and off it went to the dump early on. Once the bank account recovers from the fuel pump and the new tires, we’ll be shopping for a comfy recliner. Meanwhile we’re going to move the desk over into the slide. That will take some additional construction, so I’m not going to share any official “we’re done!” photos just yet, but let’s just say we’re a whole lot closer to actually being able to pull out of the garage in the next two days!

Now to just make sure we collect all OUR stuff that has migrated out of the house these last 3+ weeks.

Getting Ready

With only three days left before we head to Oklahoma, there has been a lot of scurrying around getting things ready to go. Or ready to leave behind, as the case may be. While we are putting the finishing touches on the RV Reno and working on getting things back into the rig, Don and Jenny are not only getting themselves ready to leave, but they have the additional chores of closing up this home/garage/hanger for the winter. And don’t forget, it’s a South Dakota winter we’re talking about. One of the biggest items that needs attention is Jenny’s pretty little ride – the Stinson.
UntitledFirst of all – let me correct my earlier post. This is a 1948 Stinson, not a 1940 – and she’s as pretty as can be! Just like any vehicle that’s going to sit still for a season, certain things need to happen. But first she had to come out of her cozy little house. JennysStinson-1
Don and Gary pushed the wings, Jenny steered from the rear, and I watched the wing tips and the door openings.

And took a couple of pictures. 🙂

Once we had her clear of the hanger, Jenny and I hopped in and took her for a spin. JennysStinson-3
Jenny really wanted to take her UP for a spin, but those cows were in the bean field runway across the way and as much as the sky was calling, she resisted and just took her for a spin in the yard!

Annnnddd back around.
The purpose of that little exercise was to get the oil flowing in the engine so it would be easier to change. It was also a good opportunity for me to be able to say I’ve ridden in Jenny’s plane.

OK, you know that is totally staged, but she really did let me do a bit of the steering.
Anywho – once the oil was changed (glug, glug), came the really fun part. Fogging the carburetors. While the engine is running (and the prop turning) Don has to lie under the fuselage and spray fogging oil into the intake. Not sure of all the technicalities of this procedure, but it’s very important that the cylinders are coated before the plane is tucked in for the winter. And it’s also a pretty tricky and messy job.
Pretty much as fast as Don was spraying it in, the propeller was blowing it back into his face. It took several tries to get the job done, and once it was, Don was too! Glad I was just the relay-er of hand signals and picture taker on that one for sure!
After Don got cleaned up, it was time to get her back in the hanger. This time with a little help from the mower!
But we all got in the act getting her situated, making sure those wing tips had plenty of clearance.


So she’s all tucked away, with nice clean oil and lubed pistons, and is waiting for one final step. Before we leave, her battery comes out and lives in the freezer for the winter. Just hanging out with the burgers until spring rolls around again!
stinson air to air
While visions of the open sky are filling her dreams.