Day 6:  It's all good in the Badlands

Today Jason called an audible, adjusted our itinerary, and pointed us in the direction of the Badlands. Suddenly we realized that there is not much time left in this portion of the trip. We need to be efficient. So, Badlands, then Black Hills, then recrossing 😍Wyoming😍, and back to SLC.  We drove and drove and drove some more. And the littles played and played and played some more. 

  The littles created this damsel in distress/superhero narrative in which Superhero Elmo, manned by Landon, has to save Cookie from all his misadventures. After they went for a hike and had tea and cake, of course. 

Then, they upped the ante. Vehicles in the form of crocs moved Superhero Elmo and Beleaugured Cookie around all the dangerous places. 

Oh, look!  A train!!!  

This went on for two hours, much to the delight of the big boys, who were left alone to read, and the parents, who could enjoy scenery and tea in peace.

And then we arrived at WALL DRUG. Honey, I'm home. 

Honestly, I don't know what it is about Wall Drug, but I loved every second of it. I could have stayed there all day....

 ...but the others could NOT. 

The food. Affordable!  Delicious!  Abundant!  And exactly the kind of cafeteria fare that I live for. 


The walls were covered in cattle brands. They were everywhere. I spent the entire lunch making up stories for the people behind the brands. Gilbert C. Oldenburg?  Has no imagination. Howard Eggers?  Pensive. Ernest Pipal?  Likes a cherry in his daily Tom Collins. Mr. Baylor?  I think he's a depressive. Why else would you have a frown symbol included in your brand?  Lane Johnston?  Runs an earthworm farm on the side. Naughton Girls and Flora Brafford? They are just awesome because they are women ranchers. REAL COWGIRLS. 

 Turns out, I had forgotten how much I love cattle brands. If memory serves, Hank and Ruth's brand was a V with two bars, but I'm going to need to research it. I'm going to be spending some time with my bestie Google and get all the information about cattle brands. ALL OF IT. 

And, I have decreed that we Pett's need a brand. Here's my proposal:

  I'll let you know if it gets through the committee. They are tough. 

So, we said goodbye to our friend...

  ...and hightailed it to the Badlands. 

Carter's initial impression?  There are no trees in this world. 

Home sweet home. 

Shout out to my amazing, ahisma yogini women.  This one's for you. ❤️❤️

  We drove the scenic overlook and marveled at  how otherworldly it is. 

  And in between ooh-ing and ahhh-ing, the boys decided to build a Pett Boy Sandwich. 

  For the safety of all involved (that means YOU, little Mister I-Have-No-Fear-I-Want-To-Hurl-Myself-Off -Cliffs-And-Over-Waterfalls), we decided to split up for today's hike. The daredevil and I took a safe, guarded stroll, while the others climbed and jumped and were basically in peril the entire time (or so I was told. We Pett's might be prone to exaggeration). 

The "Keep Landon Alive" Route The Climbing Crew

Team Picture. With Duck Lips. 

Quote of the Day:

Carter:  Look at that cave there!  It looks like a heart!

Jason:  Climb up in there. 

C:  Yeah, then we can climb inside love. ❤️

  We loved it all. And Landon lived to hike another day. 👍