Wednesday, July 18, 2012

By the beach but not at the beach

We headed out of town for our beach vacation bright and early Monday morning. The kids were given a choice of amusement parks/zoos and to no one's surprise, even after having a season pass and going about a dozen times, they chose Legoland. And really, we want to take advantage of that now because they are the perfect ages for Legoland. In a few years I imagine they will start to outgrow it.

The thing about Legoland is that it is not so much about the rides as it is the various play areas - the kids spent a ton of time in Duplo PlayTown, Pirate's Cove, which is essentially a mini water park (good thing we had their suits!), The Hideaways, a giant wooden play structure with bridges, cargo nets, slides, tunnels and punching bags, Pharroh's Revenge, where you fire foam balls at targets and each other and Build and test, where you create your own Lego vehicle and race it down a ramp against other kids' creations. Then of course there is Miniland with the new Star Wars gallery including Lego reproductions of scenes from each of the six episodes plus the Clone Wars. See? Who needs to go on rides?

But Jadyn is our thrill seeker so of course we did go on rides, including several roller coasters that Jake had no interest in riding. Overall, the kids had a good time at Legoland and our trip had started off great.

I should have heeded this warning but Jadyn REALLY wanted to go on Pirate Reef and she had to go with an adult. I knew I was in trouble when more than half of the riders were in bathing suits! This picture does not give a true representation of how soaked we were. Everything was wet except the very top of our heads:

My knight in shining (foam) armor, Jake:

On his way to rescue the princesses and his sister:

 Jadyn and I on the Dragon coaster (this  is a picture of a picture obviously):

The kids with Lego Darth Maul:

Jadyn showing off her Duplo creation:

 And Jake waiting for more opponents to race:

Tuesday morning was spent at the beach, after which we all cleaned up and headed out to Boomer's. We were able to get wristbands that gave us access to a majority of their attractions, which included miniature golf, laser tag, go karts and bumper boats. This is the first time we have taken the kids to a place like this where they were tall enough to do anything besides golf. We all had a blast and this was crowned the favorite of our trip by Jake, Jadyn and myself. Of course it helps for me that I beat everyone at miniature golf and have a propensity toward aggressive and fast driving. And Jake played at least 5 rounds of laser tag (no surprise there). We also played some video games inside and Jadyn won 1000 tickets on a spinning game of luck. Seriously, Joe had to sit there for 20 minutes collecting all the tickets the machine had to dispense. We capped off the evening with dinner at Old Spaghetti Factory (and I don't need to remind you that this is a favorite of mine right?)

 After our round of golf. The men thought they destroyed the evidence of my victory but I have the scorecard in this picture (before they stole it from my purse) to prove my win:

 Jadyn and I zipping around the track:

Jadyn after winning 100 tickets. She then of course when on to win 1000, which I unfortunately didn't get a photo of - just picture this amount of tickets plus 900 more:

Jake enjoying the bumper boats:

Wednesday morning was also spent at the beach and again after cleaning up, we headed out to eat lunch at Ruby's, shop for new tennis shoes for the kids and visit the Sea Life Aquarium next to Legoland (we had free admission with our hopper tickets). While the aquarium is not very big and could not be an all day adventure, we did get to see some pretty cool sea creatures (sharks, moon jellyfish and Japanese spider crabs), play a fun quiz game along the way and touch some starfish in the tide pools. The kids learned a lot and seemed to enjoy it. That evening we just brought food back to the beach house, went for a walk out the rock jetty and relaxed. It had been a long an exhausting 3 days!

The kids in the observation bubble taking in the scene:

And Lego Spongebob, you know because he lives on an island under the sea:

And then of course Thursday, it was already time to leave. We took another walk along the jetty and bid adieu, heading back to the desert heat (and on this particular day humidity and rain), going straight to Jake's last All-Star game and then home. I love the beach and always leave wishing we had more time. On the same token however, there are many reasons why I like to visit but wouldn't want to live there again - too expensive, too much traffic and too cold. And the rest of the family agrees with these sentiments. I guess we truly are desert rats after all.


Lindsay said...

I can't wait to try a Boomer's-type place! They all three look like a lot of fun. =)

Carrie77 said...

I really need to get my kids to Legoland someday... They just built one in Kansas City, but it isn't a theme park, more of an activity station. It looks awesome!