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Up until now the places we’ve stayed on our journey from Key West to Alaska have been new to us. This week was a little different. We spent the week in one of America’s heartland states, Indiana. It’s the place where I grew up and where the majority of my family still lives. Our mission this week was to spend quality time with family and to see at least two new things in the area. We wanted to show our kids that you can find always find adventure near or far.

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PHOTOS FROM THE ROAD #4

In our homeschool we talked a lot about the role the Mississippi River played in the development of the United States. It was fun to sit along the banks and watch the freighters in action.

In our homeschool we talked a lot about the role the Mississippi River played in the development of the United States. It was fun to sit along the banks and watch the freighters in action.

One of the first National Parks we visited was Yosemite in California. It was off season so the weather was a little chilly but it was great because there weren't any large crowds.

One of the first National Parks we visited was Yosemite in California. It was off season so the weather was a little chilly but it was great because there weren’t any large crowds.

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PHOTOS FROM THE ROAD #2

Nathanael and his best friend, Nico, at the Colorado National Monument. She has had added so much joy to the trip. Many national parks don't allow pets on the trails so it's wise to check the park's website to see their pet policy before heading out.

Thing 2 and his best friend, Nico, at the Colorado National Monument. She has had added so much joy to the trip. Many national parks don’t allow pets on the trails so it’s wise to check the park’s website to see their pet policy before heading out.

You can't go to Yellowstone without getting a family photo in front of the sign. We had high expectations for Yellowstone, after all, it is the most famous and oldest National Park. It not only lived up but surpassed our expectations and we look forward to going back someday!

You can’t go to Yellowstone without getting a family photo in front of the sign. We had high expectations for Yellowstone, after all, it is the most famous and oldest National Park. It not only lived up but surpassed our expectations and we look forward to going back someday!

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10 TIPS FOR RVING WITH PETS

We are animal people. I’ve had pets for as long as I can remember, everything from mice to fish to horses.

When our first son, Thing 1, was born, we got a pug and named him Nigel. Nigel is now a senior who has lost most of his eyesight and hearing.

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STARGAZING ACROSS AMERICA

Star light, star bright…ring a bell? There’s something captivating about stars and the fact that they’re light-years away but we can still see them at night, twinkling in the sky. Plus, they’re great for making wishes! Here are a few handpicked stargazing destinations to enchant you along your RV journey. 1. Black Mesa State Park , Oklahoma Pack some snacks and hit the road, Jack, because Black Mesa State Park in Oklahoma is a stargazing destination for the books! The mesa, which gave the park its name, is the highest point in Oklahoma, reaching 4,973 feet above sea level. Park your RV and take a hike up this rock plateau for an unbeatable view of the Milky Way! 2. Arches National Park, Utah Not only is Arches National Park a whirlwind of contrasting colors and land formations during the day, but at night a whole other form of beauty comes about. The dark night sky engulfs the national park and turns every inch of it into a giant observatory! Not to mention, the arches make for interesting shapes against the nightscape.   3. Cuyamaca Rancho State Park, California Want to get even closer to the night sky? Stop at Cuyamaca Rancho State Park in California and hike more than 100 trails to reach over 5,000 feet above sea level for a truly “wow-tastic” view of the night sky in all its wonder. The star-peeping here is sure to blow your mind!  4. Devil’s Tower National Monument, Wyoming Devil’s Tower National Monument is not only sacred ground to the Lakota Native American tribe, but it’s also sacred territory for avid stargazers! This national monument is prime star-spotting real estate. And lucky for us, it’s open to the public! 5. Shenandoah National Park, Virginia Last stop, Shenandoah National Park – the mother of all stargazing destinations. There’s a reason “Virginia is for lovers” and it’s because it’s hard not to fall in love under this breathtaking night sky. Shenandoah’s skyline drive is the perfect place to take it all in, but make sure you pull over before stargazing! Is your favorite stargazing location not on the list? Leave us a tip in the comments below!