Monday, August 12, 2013

Road Trip 2013

Ahoy Pirates and Wizards!

I am back from vacation! Actually I have been home for a few days, but I needed the last few days as a vacation from my vacation.  As you will see in this post, it was VERY busy, but we had a lot of fun.  And I decided to post about it here because a lot of people have been asking where we went, if they can see some pictures, etc.

To answer the first question, we decided to take a road trip.  First we went to New York City, then New Jersey, and finally to Pennsylvania before returning home to good old New Hampshire.  We managed to do quite a bit considering we stayed only a few days in each place.  Now for the second part people were asking about.....Are you ready for picture overload?

Day 1
The first day was mostly packing up last minute things and then traveling to New York City.  However, when we got there we did have time to do a few things.....such as walk about 20 blocks from the hotel to Central Park.  We also stopped at The Empire State Building on the way. Here are a couple pictures.
View from The Empire State Building.  You can see Central Park.
Another view from The Empire State Building. You can see Freedom Tower
and The Statue of Liberty in this one.
As you can see, it was kinda hazy all the way up there.  I don't know if it always is, or if I just have bad luck, because the pictures I have from my visit 11 years ago are hazy too.  Anyway, after that, we walked to Central Park.  It was fun people watching on the way there.  And once we got there, Chloe and Aidan saw the people giving horse carriage rides and asked if we could take one.  So we did.  I don't have many pictures of the park from that day, but here is one of Aidan in the carriage.
I'm not positive, but I think this is in front of the Plaza Hotel.
Day 2
The second day was probably our busiest day.  Our first stop was FAO Schwartz.  And I have to say, this was a VERY cool toy store.  We actually spent a couple hours just looking around.  The kids played on the piano from the movie "Big" and there were a bunch of really cool statues built from Legos.
The BIG Piano
Lego Batman
Chloe trying to be a Skylander :P
When we left, we headed across the street to chill out a little in Central Park. I actually have some pictures this time.
Random Central Park picture. It's actually a really beautiful park.
Not sure if Chloe is contemplating life or Sprite :P
Aidan being Aidan :P
Then it was time to go to Times Square!  Okay, here is a word of advice.....If you ever go to NYC do NOT get food from the carts/vendors on the side of the road.  I'm not a picky eater at all, but everytime we got food from them, we got sick.  Anyway, we hung out in Times Square for a bit, just looking around and people watching. 
Times Square
Batman and Cat Woman......And Chloe and Aidan :)
Then we went to Madame Tussauds, which is a wax museum of famous people.  I learned something while there. Wax figures totally creep me out.  Seriously.  I didn't even get within like 10 feet of any of them. lol  I do have a TON of pictures of my kids with them though.  Here are a few.
With the Obamas
Um......Aidan....uh....yeah LOL
With Dracula
Rocking out with Jimi Hendrix idea who this hockey player is....or why
Aidan is making that face lol
The highlight of the day for Chloe...Justin Bieber
The Hulk!
Chloe and Beyonce
Highlight #2 for Chloe....One Direction!
Okay, so after I got totally creeped out by the creepy wax figures.....we headed next door to Ripley's Believe It or Not.  This place was so cool.  I have also been to the one in San Francisco, but I think the NYC one may be better.  If you ever get a chance to go to one, I highly recommend it. There are so many awesome, cool, crazy, unbelievable things there :)
Um...Mom?  Why are you making us stand next to the creepy guy?
This was cool. You dance in front of the screen and it makes different
colored patterns across the screen.
Aidan is in the pillory....Probably from being too silly or something :P
Day 3
Our plan was to head to New Jersey this day, but first we spent some time seeing a couple sites we hadn't gotten to yet.  We took the Staten Island ferry and got a close up of the Statue of Liberty, as well as some awesome views of the NYC skyline.  Then we headed to the 9/11 Memorial.  They did an amazing job on this.  It is absolutely beautiful.  Really sad though.
Battery Park
Aidan in Battery Park
Statue of Liberty.....And a PIRATE SHIP!
Kidding. I don't THINK it was a pirate ship, but ya never know :P
NYC Skyline
Part of the 9/11 Memorial. It's so huge that it was hard to get a good picture.
A close up of the Freedom Tower
Days 4 and 5
Our first day in New Jersey we were supposed to go to Hurricane Harbor, which is the waterpark at Six Flags. However, it downpours.  So Instead we went to see Despicable Me 2 in 3D.  It was a pretty good movie.  Then we found an indoor arcade place and played some arcades and laser tag.  Another thing you should try if you never have....Laser tag! It's a lot of fun.

The following day the weather cleared up, so we were able to go to Six Flags. First we spent the morning on the safari.  It was cool to see all the animals.  There were zebras, ostriches, bears, tigers, lions....tons of different animals.  Chloe and Aidan even got to feed the giraffes!  I have a lot of pictures of the animals, but I'm not going to post them all here. I will post a few though.
In the parking lot at Six Flags
Rhinos! It was weird seeing a rhino without a bunny on it (Ian Stormstaff) :P
Sloth! You can see it's face at the left side of the basket. He was so cute!
Feeding giraffes
Kangaroos. There was one with a joey in her pouch, but we couldn't get a
The tigers were HUGE!
Day 6
The day after Six Flags we headed to Pennsylvania, but first we stopped at the coast to enjoy some time at the beach.  I say we stopped at the coast....we actually drove about an hour in the opposite direction of PA to get there.  It was worth it though. The beach we went to was beautiful and we got some cool shells as souvenirs.
We found tons of these sand crab things while digging in the sand.
The water was FREEZING! But the kids didn't mind :)
Chloe spent a lot of time collecting shells.
Aidan spent a lot of time throwing them back in the water :P
Sand castle! :)
Day 7
Our first day in Pennsylvania we went to Chocolate World!  It was samples of chocolate everywhere! Yum!!  We saw a 4D movie, went on a tour and made our own chocolate bars.  Oh yeah....did I mention? We got to eat chocolate too! :)  After that, we went to Hershey Gardens which was fun as well :)  There was a kid's garden, lots of flowers and a butterfly house.  It was very relaxing!
Chocolate World!
Waiting to watch the 4D movie
Ready to go in to make candy bars!
Holding the candy they made.
Butterflies at Hershey Gardens
A flower at Hershey Gardens
This was cool.  When you jumped on it it made music
Chloe making music.
A fountain at the Gardens
Day 8
We decided to go to Hershey Park on a Monday, hoping it would be less crowded.  It was still pretty crowded, but probably not as much as if we had gone on a weekend.  Hershey Park was more fun than Six Flags.  The kids could go on a lot more of the rides, which was nice.  And they had a lot of fun making new friends in line at the rides they went on by themselves.  In addition to the amusement park rides, there are also water slides and a mini zoo here as well.  So we spent all day here, from 10:00am to 10:00pm.  It was fun though! :)
On a ride with new friends :)
Aidan and other kids I don't know :P
Face Painting! :)
Day 9
The day after Hershey Park we spent some time in Lancaster County aka Amish Country.  We went to a museum of sorts where you could see what their schools, barns, stores and houses looked like.  We also stopped at a couple of their farmstands and got homemade jams and rootbeer.  Chloe and Aidan fell in love with some kittens at one of the places, and the owner told me they could take one.  I said no thanks :P (She was joking anyway.) 

I did get a few pictures at the museum, but not at the farmstands, since I wanted to respect their beliefs of not having photos taken of them.
Totally random, but Aidan found a newly hatched cicada :)
In an Amish buggy
Inside an Amish school house...And yes, Aidan is being Aidan again lol
Day 10
This was the last day of vacation for us.  We headed home, but first we had one more stop to make.  We went to Crystal Caves, which is basically a huge cave you can get a tour of.  There are a few of these in Pennsylvania, but this one was on our way home.  The cave was awesome.  The pictures don't really do it justice, but here are a couple anyway:
This is actually at the deepest part of the cave looking back the way we came.
Um......Shiny rocks?  This was some sort of formation, but I forget what.
It's pretty and shiny though :D 
More rocks :P
So after that it was a 10 hour drive home.  I think that was the best part! (Kidding!)  Anyway, as you can see, we stayed very busy on this vacation.  It was a lot of fun though.  I hope you enjoyed reading about it! If you have any questions, feel free to post them in the comments. :)  Thanks for reading and see ya tomorrow with a Pirate101 post! :)