I just got back from being unplugged. I took a vacation with my family in which I didn’t check my email, post to a blog, tweet, post to Facebook (or Face-Crack as my husband affectionately calls it) or even use my cellphone, except to locate the people I was traveling with at the time.
It was great. I like being unplugged. No, I LOVE being unplugged.
After a whirlwind year of blog tours, radio interviews, and all that comes with a new book, I was blissed out to just have time with my family.
We decided to head West to South Dakota so our daughter could see Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Wall Drug, The Mammoth Dig, Flintstone Village, Bear Country, and everything else for the first time. Seeing everything through her eyes was magical.
We rented a cabin from the High County Guest Ranch, which is about as far as I willing to go in the “roughing it” department. Our cabin had a full kitchen, two baths, heat, and air conditioning. Yeah, that’s me roughing it! No, I’m not getting a kick back for mentioning their name in this post, I just loved my experience there and want people to know about them. Literally, cell reception in this area was nill, so there were no pesky work calls interrupting us, and I saw more than one teenager suffering from texting withdrawals, but I digress.
Every morning a bevy of horses were run past the back door of our cabin up to the main riding coral and every night they were run
past us again to their evening pastures. The sight took my breath away every day that I witnessed it. The photo I’ve posted does not do the sight justice. It was magical. My little girl was giddy every day she saw the horses run.
The Circle B Chuckwagon is always at the ranch. They put on a beautiful “Cowboy Music” show and a great
chuckwagon dinner. Before the performance there’s a caricature artist (awesome artist who works for tips – if you go don’t stiff him like some people I saw), Doug Ladd a Master Woodcarver (amazing work – he was the official artist of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake), and a shootout for the kids (my little one is still taking about apprehending the “Biscuit Bandit”), as well as gem panning, wax bullet pistol shoot, pony
rides, and more – all of which were so much fun.
When we ventured off the ranch, South Dakota does not disappoint. Okay, Deadwood sucks just a little bit, but only because they traded their history for becoming little Las Vegas, which doesn’t impress me. If I want to gamble I head out the casino here. The rest of South Dakota though was great.
We drove up 244 to Mount Rushmore and I got to witness my Daughter’s delight at seeing the mountain for the first time. Awesome!
That’s my little one in the video. We’d been in South Dakota for a week at this point but to her Mount Rushmore was South Dakota. I think her reaction to everything what made the whole trip magical. She went completely cowboy crazy while we were there and I still haven’t been able to get her out of her Durango’s.
If you’re a mom or a dad looking to unplug your family for awhile, I would definitely recommend hitting the hills for a spell. I can whole-heartedly recommend the High Country Guest Ranch (which is for sale so hopefully the new owners will keep the charm going), the Circle B Chuckwagon, and South Dakota as a destination.
Thank you, South Dakota!
You do not disappoint. We’re already planning our return trip.