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Our first trip to San Francisco

San Francisco was a great experience. The refreshingly cold weather during the summer, I must say, beats the heat of steamy Florida any day.

4771938773 39d2319341 Our first trip to San Francisco
We explored Fisherman’s Wharf and discovered the Musee Mecanique, an antique arcade. We spent about a hour playing arcade games that went back to the late 1800’s. Most of which only cost .25 to play! I must say, some of the games were a “little” scary… one game, Laughing Sally, boast the saying “She has been entertaining and terrifying children for 50 years”. But, all kidding aside, the arcade was a blast! The picture below is of Lucas and my father, Mark,  testing their strength. This was one of my favorite stops while in San Francisco.

4771936239 9b83604821 Our first trip to San Francisco
Since August 1873, the San Francisco Cable Cars have been in service. This long time tradition is a MUST do while in the city. We got to enjoy the steep hills and beautiful architecture while riding to China Town & The Shopping District.

4772579088 74fb991aaf Our first trip to San Francisco
No San Franciscan vacation would be complete without stopping by the Boudin Bakery, at the Wharf, for some famous San Francisco Sourdough Bread. The Boudin Bakery has been using the same recipe since 1849. You can watch fresh bread being made all day. Be sure to get a fresh loaf of Cheddar & Jalapeno Bread before you leave, it comes in handy… energy for all the walking you’ll do.

4787979926 20b00ff5ce Our first trip to San Francisco

Tips:

  • Cable cars- $13 pass (all day) this pass also includes the public transportation.
  • Bring Sweaters, Jackets & Scarves. It’s COLD in the evenings. If you forget you’ll find jackets & sweaters pretty cheap $10+ at sidewalk shops near Fisherman’s Wharf & China Town
  • Book hotel ahead-of-time. Hotels were hard to find at the spur of the moment when we went.

Posted by Shannon

Lucas & Shannon Freeze at Mount Rushmore and the Badlands, South Dakota

4700613380 a8e7ecd981 m Lucas & Shannon Freeze at Mount Rushmore and the Badlands, South Dakota

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We would be remiss to trip-it across the United States without visiting a few of the national parks, even though it was cold and raining we endured the elements and visited both the Badlands National Park and Mount Rushmore National Park located in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

It was well worth the detour; dispute the weather we enjoyed an hour long drive through the Badlands. Even though we skipped the welcome center where there was a video, exhibits and artifacts (I just saw this on their website) we managed to get numerous pictures and videos. I would have loved to bike and hike all day in this park…oh well, maybe someday we will come back.

4699004396 2a7547b768 Lucas & Shannon Freeze at Mount Rushmore and the Badlands, South Dakota

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A couple of hours west was Mount Rushmore National Park…

Boy it was cold and drizzling! In our flip flops, shorts and t-shirts we walked from our vehicle to the monument area. I watched kids and adults alike stare at us…we were the two fools from Florida that didn’t pack any heavy clothes for their summer travels. Thank goodness for the gift shop where we bought sweaters and rain jackets…it was a lifesaver.

Tips (things that surprised us):

  • Each park changed admission $10-$15 (cash only at Mount Rushmore) (The Badlands- credit card & cash only, no checks)
  • It was COLD (40-50 degrees in June)

Posted by Lucas

Bike Ride in Chicago

Our journey through Chicago started in the am on Wednesday June, 9th. We left our hotel and rode the sidewalk 15 blocks through pedestrians trying to get to work. I wouldn’t recommend this for exercise as your moving at 2 mph while trying not to run over the person in front of you (which I almost did a few times)…  Nonetheless, it was an experience worth remembering.
When we made it to Millennium Park we were stopped by a cop who told us we couldn’t ride “in the park” but we could ride “around it”. So we walked our bikes through the park, to the music we were hearing… blues. They have a huge stage with the best speaker system I’ve ever seen hanging over an area of the park. We listened for a while and then walked our bikes to the Park Grill Chicago for lunch.
After an awesome lunch we found the bike path around the park and followed it to the water. I must say, I was amazed by the beauty of Lake Michigan. I wasn’t expecting the endless blue-green water, or the sailboats.  Simply breathtaking.

Posted by Lucas and Shannon