Friday, February 3, 2012

A Wet Winter Getaway

They sounded like a herd of baby elephants as they trampled down the hall in search of their suitcases--giddy and excited at the mere mention of a family road trip. After getting some great report cards and generally feeling the need for some family bonding, we decided to take the kids to the Wisconsin Dells for a weekend.

Telling them on a Monday had its ups and downs, on one hand it made the week ridiculously long, yet all of us were riding cloud 9 in anticipation of the getaway. They'd wake up and talk about it. We'd go to bed counting down the days. We'd even sing about it. Shocker (years ago on a random roadtrip I came up with a goofy travel song that verses can easily be changed around and it has strangely become our anthem.)


And before I knew it, we were packed up, car loaded and heading north--not looking back. Road trip snacks? Yup. Twizzlers? Check. M&M's? Check. Clementines? Check, check. We turned the volume up and shouted Baby Baby at the top of our lungs (like true Beliebers.) And it occurred to me that these moments with my family when we're free and adventurous--are my absolute favorite. I let go. I let loose. A different me, dare I say an even better one. Something about getting out of my own house, my safety net, and throwing structure and expectations out the window is so envigorating for me. All of us, actually. Even little Chance was riding the thrill of a new environment. A new hotel? Hells ya! The kids spent a good 30 minutes exploring EVERY single nook of our room. 

Why are hotel phones the COOLEST toys around? 

Taking his Trunkie for a ride
Now, if you're not already aware, the Wisconsin Dells is the waterpark capital of the world. Waterpark after waterpark after waterpark, each trying hard to outdo the other. The greatest part of some of these waterparks? INDOOR WATERPARKS! What could be better than packing a swimsuit and going tubing in the middle of January? Not much. It wasn't long before the swimsuits were on and we were hitting up the late-night waterpark in our hotel.

Fun times getting wet inside, while the snow was falling outside. 

This was their first time at a water park--and OH MY GOD they LOVED it. They were a bit nervous at first but once we took them down the slides with us, they were ready to do it on their own. 

Mia had made a family annnouncement that "in the water area she would like to be called Mermaid Mia"--but only in the water area (because god forbid you make the mistake of calling her that when tucking her in to bed later that night.)

Sista's got a mean set of standards.

He's becoming a little boy right in front of me these days.

Chance loved walking around the 9 inches of water that filled the area like a true champ. 
Lap after lap. Little man was tired!

And they loved their new bed, if only for 2 nights.

We spent the next two days at a larger waterpark, Chula Vista. Which meant that us adults got to have a few thrill seeking rides on their three story waterslides. Holy crap, it was fun! As soon as I pushed off, that familiar 7th grade feeling of slipping and sliding down the tubes all came rushing back to me. 

It was a perfect little getaway. Time and time again we are convinced that even 48 hours someplace different, is enough to make a lasting impression.

Chance HATED it when we took him out of the water to leave.

And Bella and Mia enjoyed EVERY second of their water play. 

They're already asking us when they could go back again.

And I'm already trying to plan for the next getaway.

But until then, we've got a cute little family movie to remind us:

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