Our time in Florida was simply wonderful. I kept on thinking, "I can't believe I have 8 warm sunny days with my family!" I think the only bummer part of the trip was that we were going to spend the first day and 1/2 with our friends who live in Florida. Unfortunately, when we arrived, we found out their son had the stomach flu. Although we still had breakfast with them the following day, and stayed at their "house next door," we didn't get to stay up and chat or play "greedy" with them. But we weren't about to get all chummy chummy with the thought of getting the stomach flu ourselves and virtually ruining our week of relaxation. Thank you for your hospitality, Jon and Stacey, despite feeling so sick.
The rest of our vacation was spent at a resort in Kissimmee, thanks to my in-laws. We each (all of my hubs family members) had a one bedroom condo with a little kitchenette so we could make the majority of our meals. There wasn't a stove to cook on, but my in-laws are always well equipped with alternatives. They brought two electric skillets to make pancakes, stir fry, eggs, etc. You name it, they were willing to make it. We really only ate out for dinner two times. And the meals were hilarious. Try fitting 8 grown adults, and 3 little children in a 9'x12' room. We sat on coolers, the floor, arm rests, basically any little corner we could find. I'm sure housekeeping ended up having a fun time cleaning up that room too, because 3 kids under 4 years old can only keep their food on their plates so well. But we were together and having fun.
We spent most of our days just relaxing by the pool side (my idea of a perfect vacation). My hubs was very wonderful in taking the girls to the pool the majority of the time so I could take in maximum sun time on the lounge chairs and chat with the sister in-laws. The pool had a big waterfall in the center where kids could race underneath. Of course our girls were going no where near that. Their petrified fear of water subsided some over the week, but not as much as I would have hoped. The hubs actually got Katie to swim from him to the steps (with swimmies on) one day, but the next she wanted nothing to do with it. Both girls were satisfied sticking to depths they could reach or clinging to our arms. Oh well, baby steps right?
Perhaps my favorite part of the trip was going to Sea World. We debated whether or not to do the whole Disney thing, but thought maybe one adventure park for the week would be enough. As it ended, we were glad with our decision, because that day really tuckered them out. The park was just great though. I almost had more fun watching my kids in awe reactions to the shows than the shows themselves. What surprised me most was my emotional response. The magnificence of "Shampoo" (as Katie called him) jumping out of the water simply brought me to tears. Yes, this pregnant momma had a few emotional moments that day. The shows were elegant, humorous, and entertaining. Kyra's favorite show was a dog and cat show. These dogs and cats were walking on tight ropes, driving cars, jumping through hoops, and more. Although it was at the end of the day, the girls stood in laughter through almost the whole show. Her least favorite was the sea lion show, because the "pirates were fighting and being mean." It was actually a pretty funny show, but she thought the pretend fight was real. I told her they were just pretending. She said, "you mean the pirates aren't real humans?"
The park also had quite a few kiddy rides. We even took them on a relatively high, and fast roller coaster. Although it was a kiddy ride, it took quite a drop, that even I was surprised. Half way through the ride, Kyra nervously asked when it would be over. I was afraid if she had that reaction, how Katie was doing, but when we got off, the hubs said Katie had a great time. I should have known the younger one wouldn't be afraid of a little coaster ride!
Yes, the trip was a great success. And after being home a few days now, I am definitely missing the mid 70 degree weather. Although we feel rejuvenated as a family and are thankful that spring is near.
"Shampoo" giving the diver a ride
This dog pushed a cart, a door opened and out popped 5 wiener dogs!
The Sea Lion Pirate Show
The girls give a manatee statue a hug, after seeing the real deal