Monday, March 24, 2008

Ramblings: Spring Break o' Fun

For part of Spring Break we hauled the crew to San Antonio to meet Shamu and all his relatives. Apparently, this was not a unique idea, as most of the Texas population was right there with us. I was surprised by how many cars with Mexican license plates (which, FYI, are alot prettier than ours) surrounded us at Sea World and all the other touristy spots. Is it Sprink Break in Mexico, too?

Another wacky finding: tons of Japanese tourists. Huh? If I had to list the top 10 coolest places I'd want to visit in the United States, I'm quite sure San Antonio (no offense S.A.) would NOT be on the list. Unless they are HUGE fans of this guy and just had to go ask about the Alamo's basement.

Since we've been trying to use our video camera more, we didn't actually take a bunch of pics there, but this was by far the best part of the whole day spent there.

The boys were and are still very sleep deprived from our little vacation. Because every hotel was sold out within 30 miles of San Antonio, we ended up in a "King Suite" instead of the normal two room places we try to get. Let's just say--nothing sweet about it. Basically we were all pretty much in the same room. We hid the boys' pack n' plays behind this half-wall divider in the "sitting area" and tried to keep everyone else muffled on the other side of the room. Needless to say, no one got their necessary or usual amount of sleep. But they decided to be nice and fall asleep at about 2 in the afternoon, probably in the hopes that one day we'd still be willing to pay for college...or just feed them dinner that night. They were pretty raunchy.

The second best part: Jeremy convinced the kids to ride this big water ride called the Journey to Atlantis---equivalent of Six Flags' Splash Mountain, or an intense Log Ride. Anyway, Alex backed out about three times at the point where you load onto the boat, but finally summoned the courage and said, "I just HAVE to do it!" (This could have possibly been because Maddie was like, yeah, sure-- I'll ride it. Big whoop. And what seven year old boy can be outdone by his four year old sister? Not Alex.
The main drop is VERY steep and we just had to buy the ridiculously overpriced picture afterwards because it just told the whole story perfectly. You probably can't see it very well, but Maddie looks like she's a terrified corpse, and Alex has a death grip on Jeremy while trying to bury himself in his armpit. I don't think they really enjoyed the ride as much as being able to tell everyone they went on it. Since we've been back I keep finding them sitting, just staring at the photo in awe of their bravery.

Aidan discovered cotton candy. He's a fan. Can't you just feel the stickiness? It was worth it--he was quite literally glued into silence during two shows. Avery licked it once, then refused it every time Aidan tried to shove it in his mouth. Must be for those of us with a more distinguished palette.

There was also a bunch of this---there's a reason they call those things "Crackberries". Jeremy had a big motion due to be filed that day and he was editing and stressing over it amongst all the joys of navigating the crazies thru the crowds, dealing with tantrums, and trying to read the dumb pictorial map. More than once it was in danger of being thrown in a puddle of penguin pee. See! I do exist. My kids are going to look back at all our pictures and think I took separate vacations---which is not a bad idea. But I actually made it into one shot with Avery. I couldn't bring myself to think about how many diseases we were all exposed to from the boys dragging their "B"s around everywhere. I can't believe I actually allowed it that close to my face. If I'm dead when this posts, you'll know why.

Maddie loved everything...until about 4 when she crumbled onto the 100 degree asphalt and said, "I just can't take it anymore. My legs are just too broken."

On the way back home, we managed to visit a big cavern tourist attraction. The kids panned for gems and then couldn't understand why we wouldn't let them take the 70 minute tour of the cave...during which we would have to carry their brothers --who could have easily been, at this point, confused with demon spawn--on slick walkways through the dark.

After quick car naps for the boys, we managed to burn a couple of very methodically planned out hours in San Marcos at the most gigantic outlet mall you've ever seen. I could've spent the whole day in the Pottery Barn/Williams Sonoma outlet alone. But surprisingly the rest of my family does not value finding the perfect lampshade. (FYI--if you live by a Children's Place outlet, I picked up a bunch of cute tights, gloves, stocking hats, socks and other odds and ends for 50 cents each. Might be worth a trip. See # 2 at right.).

We eventually made it home in one piece and as we pulled into the neighborhood, Avery screamed "YAAAY!" and started clapping. And the next morning when we tried to load him up in the car for church, he had flashbacks and screamed "NO, NO, NO!" That's what my bum was thinking too.



I can't believe I am the first one to comment on this wonderful post. It was so great, especially because Laura is such a talented storyteller. I could totally picture the whole Alex rollercoaster story since we saw pretty much the same thing last summer on the rope swing challenge. That was just too funny. Good Job Alex!
You guys do so much fun stuff. It was our kids Easter Break last week and we didn't do anything but take them to the dollar theater.

Amy said...

I have so many comments, where do I begin?

1. I'm not sure how I feel about the fact that you remember details from PeeWee's movies.

2. Cotton candy is greatness and should be appreciated by all.

3. I love the picture on the ride. Definitely worth the $15 you probably paid for a color printer copy.

4. Love the outlets. We're getting a Coach one here very soon!

The Richards said...

What would we do without the internet?!? Seriously I have been trying to find your contact info forever, since I lost track of everyone when my parents decideed to move to California. I was so excited to hear from you. Your family looks great, I can't believe that you have four children, and twin boys -I don't think that I could do it! One is a handful for me right now!! So I am in Utah now and probably for a very long time. My parents actually ended up here too, Mary and the rest of them are still in California. I see that you are still in Dallas. I actually thought of you last week when we were watching American Idol and they were talking about the dreads guy that is from Rockwall. Then I get a messages form you, how great is that! I miss Texas and all my fun friends. So glad that we can keep in touch now through the wonderful world of technology!! Oh and I will have to check out the Children's Place outlet in Park City, I am a big deal shopper too!! Julie

Andrea said...

Yeah, the picture was definately worth whatever it cost. That is hilarious. Seriously.

Laura said...

ok. first--Kashann, you HAD A BABY less than a month ago. That's plenty to do during Easter break.
And Amy, don't pretend like you weren't as Pee wee obsessed as the rest of us back in the day. You loved him like the rest of us---until at least he turned out to be a huge perv. Are you in Plano, btw?
JULIE--so you are not long lost anymore. I live in Heath--which is about 4 miles from the place my parents built in Rockwall, but they don't live there anymore. And the you should be able to find alot of familiar folks on here: Amy, Andrea, and Marianne at least. And When they showed Carly on American Idol last night as a kid, i thought of you and all your curliness.

M&S Palfreyman said...

I love reading all of your posts! I remember why I liked you so much. Not that I could ever forget you! Well now that you have conquered Sea World, this is now your official invite to come to Disney World!! With all the "deals" we get you have to come before the boys turn 3 so you at least won't have to pay for them. We loving living back in Florida. Especially the wonderful weather. I saw that you mentioned Marianne moved. Where did they end up going? If you ever get a free moment give me a call. I would love to catch up with you!

Travis and Jamie Shepherd said...

I am very impressed that you braved the crowds with the kids. Travis is planning our spring break to Virginia, we are staying in some friends cabin by ourselves, and it is secluded and has its own lake. Lots of space for the boys to roam free, but it is close to D.C. and he thinks that it would be great to take them to see the sights. I'm not so convinced.