the mother road. chapter 1.

June 6, 2016

summertime is upon us. it’s the time of year when we all start dreaming of the perfect road trip. the quintessential family vacation. and for those in the market for a great american roadtrip, we’re here to help.

because y’all, we took what we feel like was the roadtrip of a lifetime last year. it was, in short, absolutely the most amazing, most epic, most fun, best ever family roadtrip OF ALL TIME. it was more than making good memories. it was a great adventure that we’ll never forget. it didn’t involve amusement parks, or water slides… just days and days and days of road time. america, the beautiful.

y’all may remember our epic roadtrip of last summer. we never followed up on the “go west” blog with the recap of our trip, and now seems like the perfect time. except there is so much greatness to tell. so many pictures. so many great memories. thus, rather than 1 extremely long narrative (we’re talking longggggg), we’re going to break up our mother road rendezvous recap into several different blogs. different chapters if you will. let’s start at the beginning.

junk gypsy blog

ch 1- texas.

buckle up, y’all. we’re going on a roadtrip.

route 66. the mother road. the grand canyon.

from round top, texas → las vegas, nevada.

1,328 miles.

the whole family in 1 van for miles and miles and miles. anything and everything could go wrong.

but armed with a clark griswold attitude, it was truly the best dang vacation of our lives.

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speaking of clark, we had to re-enact the griswold family photo at the beginning of our journey…

i love this pic. (even though my eyes are closed and all. whatevs.) but i LOVE this pic because i can so clearly remember all the vibes from that day. there’s nothing like the start of a big roadtrip. the excitement. the anticipation. the feeling of the first few miles on the road. driving away from your “normal” and into the complete unknown. your mind is giddy with infinite expectations. a new adventure is beckoning…

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and let’s take a moment to honor our van. the happy van as we like to call it. our homebase. our mother ship to travel the mother road. but it doesn’t stop there, this van has a story. a really, really great story. turns out, this was willie nelson’s daughter’s van. the great paula nelson, used this van as her official band van. if only that dashboard and steel could talk…

for this voyage, the van was loaded with car bingo and maps and amie’s pinterest-inspired destinations instead of amps and instruments.

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and we were off. first stop: canyon, texas for the famous Texas Outdoor Musical , the Palo Duro Canyon, and Cadillac Ranch to kick off our route 66 journey.

but first, we were entranced by the wind turbines of the panhandle. where wind is power. and power is money. the turbines became a constant in the scenery from our van windows on this trip. but we never ceased staring at them in awe. they would dot the horizon as far as the eye could see, from texas all the way to nevada. standing like grand, stoic, silent giants in the distance.

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and while we were in this neck of the woods, we had supper at the famous perini ranch steakhouse.

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and of course, took our pic with the giant armadillo because it IS the state small mammal of texas and all. and truly, we implore you, what is a great vacation without tacky photo ops?

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after a quick stop for a pic in Happy, Texas…

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we made our way to the “Grand Canyon of Texas” … the Palo Duro Canyon. the second largest canyon in the United States. home of many early native american tribes, charles goodnight’s JA ranch, and the Texas Outdoor Musical.

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where we pretended to be nacho libre…

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junk gypsy blog

wrote our names on rocks with other rocks…(because carving our name in them like everyone else seemed like way too much work…and slightly dangerous…and not to mention time consuming)

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and saw the famous Texas Outdoor Musical…

junk gypsy blog

junk gypsy blog

next stop on the list: Cadillac Ranch.

but first, we couldn’t resist this photo op…because in Texas, we have giant cowboys at RV parks.

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junk gypsy blog

and then, behold…the famous Cadillac Ranch…because, naturally, cadillacs grow out of the ground, fin up, in corn rows on the side of the highway.

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and yes, defacing the property with spray paint is a thing here.

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so we did what all self-respecting tourists should do and stopped at the nearest home depot, armed ourselves with plenty of ammo (aka. spray paint)…and became wannabe graffiti artists.

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you won’t believe that this was spray painted right there on the ground as we were leaving. and i DID NOT DO IT. i’ve decided this was some kind of good luck sign. because it’s not every day i see my name somewhere. i mean, i was the kid who NEVER, EVER bought a souvenir with my name on it in a souvenir shop. so my name in dirt was like striking gold.

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junk gypsy blog junk gypsy blog  junk gypsy blog

and of course, mom, dad, and todd had to do the traditional griswold thing before we left…

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and then it happened y’all. we were officially on route 66.

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on the mother road. bound for the great american roadtrip. destined for the grand canyon. one of the wonders of the world. adventure was at our fingertips. the road was beckoning. the happy van was our magic carpet ride. clark griswold was our spirit animal.

for the pinsters out there, we made you a special pinworthy image…

junk gypsy blog

chapter 2 coming soon!! and chapter 3!!!


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  • Reply Tina Elliget June 6, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    Love it! Can’t wait to get the camper up and going so we can plan a road trip from Ohio to Texas!!!!

  • Reply Claralee Benningfield June 6, 2016 at 9:04 pm

    When and where are you on tv?

    • Reply Anonymous June 13, 2016 at 3:50 am

      They come on GAC or Great American Country. You can probably go to the GAC website and to see when the next season starts, 🙂

    • Reply Jolie Sikes June 27, 2016 at 9:14 pm

      we took a little break to write our first book! we’ll keep you posted on any new seasons!

  • Reply Betsy Lucky June 7, 2016 at 1:30 am

    I loved this story! You girls are the best?????? Thanks for sharing and one day I’ll be taking a road trip to your town❤️ Betsy from Summersville,WV

  • Reply Cheryl June 7, 2016 at 1:50 am

    Enjoying the trip so far…looking forward to Chapter 2!

  • Reply Billy June 9, 2016 at 12:13 am

    Looks like you had a ball. You can’t lose seeing the sights in Texas.

  • Reply Lori June 9, 2016 at 3:22 am

    Can’t wait to read about when you go pick up Aunt Edna and tie her to the roof of your van. Go Griswolds!

  • Reply Christine LaPointe June 19, 2016 at 7:23 pm

    Yay! road trips!

  • Reply Pamela Schwyzer June 28, 2016 at 5:38 am

    Fabulous! I’m a Cali girl now but once a Texan, always a Texan. I have such good memories of all of the things that you pictured…. PDC, Texas, the musical, the giant cowboy in Canyon, Tx and of course that famous planting of caddies. Amarillo is my hometown, thank you! ❤️?

  • Reply Helen Wise July 19, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    we just got back from there, we did go to TEXAS musical but we got rained out, going back next year…

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