(again, reminder, if you want to read all this, you should probably start at the beginning )
And Sunday truly was a day of rest :) . The kids had fun being the visitors in primary, and I just gotta say, Asher went right into nursery and played the whole time (nary a tear!) I’m pretty sure he didn’t even miss me! (though this week back home was back to ‘normal,’ he spent less than 5 minutes there if you don’t count when I was there with him, and I don’t have much time to sit there with him… so mostly he was in primary with me, oh well) I enjoyed sitting still for all my meetings :). Kristi made a lovely curry for lunch/dinner, so we had one more nice visit before driving off to Orlando for a whirlwind trip to Aunt Dana’s.
By this time the kids were a bit overtired and therefore a little crazier than most of the time, but it was a great evening visiting with Dana and Brent, Grandma W and Sarah, and a few more cousins (particularly Saralyn and Morgan with baby Morgan). Asher and Morgan were a little at odds over the trucks, though they were able to work everything out peacefully in the end :). We had a pretty big group to play telestrations (a fun combo of telephone and Pictionary), even Rayna and Afton were basically on their own (Rayna had a little help, because some of the words were a little tricky). It’s a fun game for a large group, especially with creative people! I think Afton ended up winning, though I’m not exactly sure. A lot of people were impressed with her art and her guesses. Rayna also did very well (they both definitely beat me and Paul, though I’m not sure of points).
Monday we broke out of our beach mold to try something entirely different, though perhaps more common in Orlando, we went to Sea World! Fortunately Saralyn has a pass so she and baby Morgan go often enough to know where to go and how to get as much squeezed into the day as possible. They made great guides! I think my kids were far more excited about the aquarium aspects than the rides, but here’s some of what they remember about the day:
Afton: I liked the shows. I liked seeing the dolphins while they were underneath the water. I also liked feeding and petting the sting rays. I liked seeing the seals and sea lions—they were barking loud begging for their food. My favorite in the show was the otter and the walrus, I just liked seeing them. I liked the flamingos, especially finding one of their feathers. I liked the wild ride to the penguins.
Rayna: I liked going in the little globe tunnel to see the sharks. I also liked ride—seeing the mountain with pretty colors and the crystals and the movie kinda story about the baby penguin. I also liked the flamingos. It was fun to see the shows and the things in the shows, like the people dressed up like birds doing acrobatic tricks (waving their arms and splits in the air and diving into the water). It was fun seeing other people on the rides, but I was glad I didn’t go on them. I liked the sea dragons.
Malachi: Now let me think. Going to both of those shows; the dolphins. There was a big turtle, as big as me; it was a hawksbill (ps, Grandma W was very impressed that Malachi could correctly identify a hawksbill, though I’m pretty sure it was the only kind of sea turtle he could remember and he got lucky ;) either way, he’s a smart cookie).
Elise: We started our trip with a little ride to Antarctica to see the penguins. The line wasn’t too bad, and the kids particularly enjoyed that there were two ride options (mild for babies and wild for big kids—and they liked that the wild ride wasn’t really very wild). There was a little story to follow of a baby penguin swimming through a cavern to the other penguins at the other end, so we followed Puck on his adventure, and ended in the penguin exhibit… it was freezing! They even had real snow. There were something like 250 penguins in the exhibit, and they were pretty fun to watch, though we didn’t last long in the cold. We also had a blast at the dolphin show, which could have been named the dolphin and bird show. There were quite a few acrobatics and some live birds that would swoop over the audience. Very pretty. I think the kids particularly enjoyed walking though the aquarium areas, seeing an octopus, sea corals, lots of fish, seahorses, etc., and there were 2 huge tanks we could walk through and see sharks. I particularly loved the manatees, if I were ever to swim with marine life, I don’t think I’d bother with dolphins (too much energy), I’d float with the manatees :). Fun fact, they’re more closely related to elephants than fish, and have skin ‘like a hairy basketball’ (to quote the girl that works there), they even have toenails on their fin! I think I may have felt more of an affinity towards them because of my big pregnant belly ;) nice, fat floaters :). We ended our afternoon early with the sea lion show. I think they were even more impressive than the dolphins! Lots of fun tricks and silly jokes, I definitely recommend it if you’re headed that way!
We had to head out of Sea World reasonably early to drive back north for FHE with Uncle Gaylon and Aunt Madonna.