Thursday, April 8, 2010

Spring Break!

We just returned from a mini vaca - just a four day jaunt down state to do some theme parks and visit a friend. We spent Easter at the Water Park in Orlando - Typhoon Lagoon and had a blast! Jamie did the children slides for the first time and we just really had a nice time.

Then we drove further down state to my friends house in Bradenton and stayed with them while going to Busch Gardens the next 2 days. My friends house was beautiful and laid out so that we had 2 bedrooms and a bathroom virtually to ourselves.

The first day in Busch Gardens did not go well though. Durn you would think they would advertise the fact that the New Preschool part - Sesame Street world or somesuch is almost all water! It had a lot of spouting water gushers and water showering down or being poured out of buckets. And we didn't bring towels or suits...we just weren't prepared for that!

Once Jamie saw the water features she didn't want to do anything else. Lots of whining and crying ensued. I don't know about you, but that isn't what I go on vacation to experience. We finally had to leave the area! We took her off past that part and 'had a talk' with her. It helped a bit, but that day just wasn't our best day on vacation. We experienced no roller coasters or big people attractions that day. It was all about her...

We arrived back to my friends past 8pm, worn out and frazzled. Diana suggested we do something else the next day, (We considered going to Siesta Key which is supposed to be one of the worlds most beautiful beaches but nixed that when finding out the water temperature was only 75 degrees) but we had gotten passes for the year for Busch Gardens so we decided to go back that next day.

The second day we brought towels and water shoes and wore our bathing suits. My how this day went better!

First of all when arriving we went on a Roller Coaster first thing. They have 'Baby swap' there...just like at Disney. It allows one of the parents to go thru the line while the other waits off to the side. Then when parent one comes off the ride, she takes the 'baby' and parent two gets right on without waiting! At this particular ride which was a wooden rollar coaster Mike and Jamie went up the exit and waited at the top where the cars where arriving and departing. Jamie cried the whole time.

But she got over it. We then did a couple of Animal encounters, one with Chimps and Apes with a ranger explaining their habits and personalities, another called Rhino Ralley where you go on an off road adventure and get up close and personal with a live Rhino!

Then when we left there it was all about Jamie for quite a while, we went straight over to the 'Sesame Street Water park' and she had a blast. I left Mike with her after a bit and went to the next area to board my second roller coaster ride of the day 'Sheikra'.

Sheikra is an african Hawk that dives straight down to get its prey. This coaster had 2 straight drops down. Underneath the coaster they had a 'splash zone' where the kids who still had thier water attire on would stand under the coaster's path and get drenched. This held great appeal for Jamie so Mike followed with her and she had that experience as well. Then Mike and I did "Baby Swap" so he could ride and I could ride again. This ride they let me and Jamie stay below while he rode and tthen she wrote me a pass to go up the fast route when he came down. This was preferable as it allowed Jamie to run and play with another little girl and drink and eat while waiting.

And that's all we had time for. It was 6 by the time we finished and I wanted to head back and spend some time with Diana. We weren't as exhausted. The day went better and we all had a good time.

Day four didn't turn out so well. I had planned on us returning to the water park on the way back home. Orlando is about the halfway point between Bradenton and Jax so it makes sense. Plus on our Magic Your Way Disney passes we have the added on Water Parks option. For only about $30 each the Water park option gives you 7 additional days in either water park. You have to use those days before the last Main Park admission is used or you lose them. I also upgraded to the No Expiration option so there are no worries about how long it will take to use our passes. So this will be the summer of the water parks.

And it has finally heated up here in Florida! Also the water parks heat their water to ensure attendance during non summer days. So the plan was to stop again at Typhoon Lagoon as their other water park Blizzard Beach is closed for refurbishing.

We arrived about 2pm to a sign saying the park had reached capacity! We were all disapointed, but I was proud that Jamie didn't do a huge amount of whining.

We pulled over in a Holiday Inn parking lot and tried to get on Wifi (why must those hotels all password protect their Wifi!?) and ate our Subway lunch that we purchased on the way. I had to pull out my Orlando book as we couldn't get on the Wifi; and we found a Science Museum to go to. We also have an annual ATSI pass that allows us to get into over 100 Science Center Museums all over the country.

So that was our last day. It went well overall, and I really did relax and enjoy my family. That is the point of it all.

Now we are home. I am up early alone, considering a Maid service to help with this house cleaning. I never have hired help before. I cleaned houses as a young adult and always vowed I would hire someone to do my dirty work, but Mike doesn't seem to like the idea. This morning I had a "Groupon" delivered to my email for Kitchen and 2 Baths cleaned for $35. Sounds like a deal to me.

So, what are you doing on your spring break?

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