Friday, March 25, 2011

Spring Break Trip

One thing I love about Facebook is the ability to take a picture and post it right away. I really felt like I could keep (anyone who cared) people in the loop on what we were doing. But, I also love the trips down memory lane that this little blog provides. So, we're going to do a little re-cap by day with copious pictures. That way, in a few years, we'll be able to look back on our trip. It was a blast!

We left Denver at 5:30pm Sunday night. But it was a thorny path to even get there. First thing, when I was leaving to sing at 8am, the Saturn wouldn't start. Paul jumped it but was afraid if I parked it for the week at DIA it wouldn't start again. So I took the Toyota. Paul was going to drop the boys off at the airport but, of course, a few hours later the Saturn wouldn't start again. So I looped home after singing and collected the boys. Off we went. Our flight went well although the descent was pretty bumpy. Little did I know how unfortunate that would be later on. We met Jayne right away and took off, in the rain, to find the shuttle to Fox Rent-A-Car. I learned something about Fox. While they are very nice, they don't send shuttles very often on a Sunday night. Next time - go more mainstream. We were wet and cold by the time we got to the rental office but left with a beautiful 2011 Corolla that we all loved. Not before Sam threw up though. Yes, turns out the bumpy ride did a number on him. Luckily he threw up in their lobby and not in the nice new car. We loaded up in serious rainy conditions. We headed out north on I5 and had to stop twice to let Sam throw up. Finally we located a ziplock in Jayne's luggage and after his next puke, in the bag, he blessedly fell asleep. In the meantime, the rain was pouring down. Pouring. Monsoon conditions. For me, it was really scary. Luckily we got there safely. We stayed at the Carlsbad Inn in a one-bedroom condo and it was perfect. Ted got his own roll-away bed, Sam and I shared the king in the bedroom and Jayne took the couch in the main room.

The boys woke up early the next morning so I settled them in for a Cartoon Network marathon and went the grocery store to stock up on staples. After breakfast we took them to see the ocean. It was awesome. First they played a delightful, careful game of running away from the waves. Then they got braver (and wetter). Finally poor Sam got out too far and while running back, tripped in the sand and got rolled. His words: "a wave covered me." He was freezing, soaked and screaming. I took him back to a warm bath while Jayne stayed with Ted. He also returned wet but not upset about it. We all agreed to return to the ocean after our first day at Legoland, with bathing suits! Our next trip was to Target to get Sam flip flops and both boys sweatshirts. It was chillier than we had thought, and with the combination of the rain Sunday and the ocean Monday, all their clothes were soaked (and sandy). That done, we headed to our first day at Legoland!!!!

We went to the left the first day, enjoying MiniLand most of all and going on a few rides. Since it was drizzling we decided to go to SeaWorld after lunch. It was really an amazing place. I think Ted's favorite part was when the shrimp guy told him to put his fingers in the shrimp tank. The shrimp then ate the dry skin off of his fingers. He loved it! Sam liked the bubble viewers - where you feel like you are IN the tank. After a full day, we headed "home" and
back the beach, this time with towels, sand toys and swim suits. The boys had a blast. If it weren't for the drizzle and wind, I think they would have stayed all night. Ted is really a risk taker. Many, many times I had to yell for him to come back, that he was out too far. He should go to college in CA and learn to surf. Then we went to La Norte Mexican Restaurant, which is right next to the condo. Sam didn't like their rice and beans or the cheese on the quesadilla. Ted surprised me and ate everything in sight. I had a margarita. It was the best one I've ever had! Of course, I was beat! We all crashed early that night.

Tuesday we decided to just do Legoland. The boys spent the morning at the ocean and after yet another warm-up bath, we headed out. (When they wake up at 5:45am, it's a long morning til the park opens at 10am!) We discovered a Starbucks right by the condo and happily made that a part of our routine. We went on a ton of rides and spent lots of time deciding which things to do today and which to do tomorrow. There was a big roller coaster called Technic that took about an hour to just get on the ride (that was Ted). After a full day, we headed home for dinner, more playing in the ocean and a rousing game of Sorry! (Ted won the first round, Jayne the second.) Sam hadn't eaten much of anything since we had arrived and was getting very fussy. I put him to bed early and he was asleep by 6:30pm. Poor thing. Perhaps his dip in the ocean and the subsequent gallon of sea water he drank didn't mesh with his delicate innards. In any case, he had a good night's sleep!

Wednesday we decided to do another day of both Legoland and SeaWorld. Today was a bit of off day for both boys. They were grumpy and wanted to stay at the condo watching cartoons. Looking back, we were pushing them to go-go-go all day long. Sam had a particularly tough day. Amongst all the rides, Ted paid to climb a rope ladder. If he could make it to the top without falling, he'd win a stuffed lion. And he did it! It took him a few tries, but he was determined and stuck to it. Originally we thought he'd learn a valuable lesson about not wasting money on "impossible carnival games" but instead he came away with a better one: stick with it. Not bad! They should have given him a cut of their earnings; that attraction was mobbed for at least an hour after he won. We had fun though and after a fun time, headed home to play in the ocean. Both boys refused to wear swim suits, swearing that they weren't going to get wet - they weren't even going to have fun! Of course, within a few moments, Ted was down to his underwear and Sam was soaked. There was a photographer set up on the beach, just photographing the sunset against the ocean, I think, but he turned and took lots of pictures of the boys. They were just so full of joy, leaping into the waves. Ted finally got his wish and got knocked down by the waves a few times. It was a lovely way to end the day. After a warm bath, we all retired early.

Thursday was another great day. Sam's tummy seemed to be on the mend and he was eating again. We bid farewell to Jayne in the morning and after packing up, went to say our goodbyes to the ocean. That was sad - we had such a wonderful time just being near such a majestic, amazing piece of nature. To my surprise, the rainy day ended up being sunny and beautiful and both boys wanted one more go at Legoland. We decided to do all of our favorite roller coasters a second time and spend some time doing the rides we had passed up the first few times. It was a great day. We headed to the airport, returned the car and got to our gate a whopping 2 hours early. And then we were delayed. We finally boarded at 8pm, arrived in Denver at 11:30pm and rolled into the driveway at 1am Friday morning. We were all completely wiped, but happy. Ted said, at one point, "It didn't feel like 4 days; it felt like 3 weeks." "Is that good or bad?" I asked. "Good!" he replied enthusiastically. That about sums up our vacation I think. It was a great time and we'll remember it happily for years to come!

One more fun pic. I think this was Sam's favorite ride.

OK, one more. Aren't my boys getting tall? Geesh!

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