Mini Vacation Adventures


The weather is quickly changing from winter to that great season called camping.  I am so ready for that time.  We love to put the tent in the car and take a mini vacation.  Leaving early in the morning, when the sun is just coming up, makes it feel even better.  I know it is still a little while before it is tenting season but a gal can dream and plan.

A couple years ago we decided we would go check out the annual Red Power Round Up.  That year it was held in Huron, South Dakota.  My husband is pretty loyal to red tractors and this was an entire event that was saturated with everything red. I am not sure at what age a tractor qualifies as vintage, but if it is older that 1977, everything my husband uses is vintage!  We spent Friday in Huron, at the State fairgrounds looking at more red tractors of every type and year than I had ever seen in one place before.  They did have a vendor fair and even had some crafts for me to check out.  Most of the those were, of course, centered on the color red. The barn quilts really caught my eye but I did not purchase any of them because, somehow, I kept thinking I could probably make one……I still haven’t done that.


After we left Huron we had decided to see if we could find a spot at Lake Thompson State Park to set up “the Palace”. The Palace, is an old LARGE canvas tent.  I think it was probably meant for a family with about 6 kids……but the price was right on this tent (free) and so we use it.

the Palace

My husband didn’t want to haul our fold down camper that far for just one night so we decided the Palace was the shelter of choice.  I am good with that as long as I can take my queen size air mattress and a few other necessities for comfort.

That night at Lake Thompson we went to get our supper fixings out of the trunk.  I had packed very minimally for this one night stay.  When we set about to open the pork and bean can I questioned my husband about the bag of utensils and dishes that I had put in the cast iron fry pan.  He got kind of a funny look and told me he had left that on the table, at home, as he didn’t think it was something we needed.  This was about to get interesting. No plates, silverware, can opener or metal spatula. There were some really useful facts we learned on this particular trip.  We found out that you can open a can of beans with a hammer and a tire iron.  You can use a potato chip bag for plates. If you check your glove compartment you just might find one plastic fork from a trip to Long John Silvers. You can also use an ice scraper to flip your pancakes the next morning.  The angle on that is actually perfect for flipping pancakes.  We did more laughing because, as a very wise neighbor once said, “What can you do?”

If you are in the Lake Thompson area, the State Park has a beautiful campground and I hear that the lake is excellent for fishing.  We enjoyed walking around and just relaxing.  We also got to see our nephew who was interning that summer with the State Park system.  We spent a little time in De Smet, at the location where the Ingalls family had lived. (Little House on the Prairie is based on this).

There was a  trade off for me going with my husband to look at tractors for a day. My husband had to spend a day in Brookings for me.  I love McCrory Gardens in that town.  Their gardens are beautiful and different things are in bloom, at different times of the growing season.  It is a huge area where you can just wander from one type of garden to the next.  There are also plenty of benches to sit on and just enjoy the view.  If you enjoy flowers and are in that area I would highly recommend a stop at the gardens.

Another place we enjoyed visiting was the Agricultural Heritage Museum. If you are into history and exhibits it is very interesting. To find out more just click on the link.

Whenever we go on a road trip – long or short we usually start the day early, taking our coffee/tea and breakfast with us.  After a couple hours on the road we find a rest stop or road side park and take a short break to walk around and eat.  One traditional breakfast that we have taken with us is a wonderful treat called Fluitt.  It is sooooo easy to make and delicious. I will post the recipe so you too, can enjoy this treat on your next road trip.  Unfortunately I do not have a photo of this as it never lasts long enough to get the camera out.


2 loaves frozen bread dough (any brand will do)
1 1/2 cup brown sugar (I use the light brown)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Put the frozen bread dough into a greased 9×13 inch pan.
Let rise overnight in oven.
In the morning, punch holes in it with either your finger or the round handle of a wooden spoon.
Mix brown sugar, cream and cinnamon and pour over top.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 – 25 minutes.
Serve warm, if possible.
This is great for a Sunday morning breakfast also or when you have company.

“Not all those who wander are lost.”
J.R.R. Tolkien,
The Fellowship of the Ring

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