Wednesday, July 3, 2013

A Father's Day at Busch Gardens

On Father's Day, Lainey's treat to us was to go downstairs and watch cartoons with the boys and allow us a slow paced morning.  Heart of gold, I tell ya!

I came downstairs and made coffee for the two of us and headed back up to lay in bed and having a Morning Meeting.  We pretty much do this every day that he has off work.  We talk about what we need to do and generally gather our thoughts.

I had the kids come up with their Father's Day gifts and then we asked Brandon what he would like to do.

He thought about .000002 seconds and said, "Let's go back to Busch Gardens."

Alrighty then.

We all set into motion things that needed to be done to go back to Busch Gardens.

And off we went. 

We weren't sure what kind of a crowd to expect on Father's Day, but we figured we would find a way to enjoy ourselves anyway.  And that, we did!

We went though the height check for Julianne, Xander and Solomon and went on our way.  We had some rides on our list that we haven't made it around to.  Brandon wanted to ride some adrenaline junkie type rides.  It was the least I could do to accommodate him.  *sigh*  Tee hee!  We also had some shows on the list for the day. 

This is the paper the boys got with their height bands.  

We walked through some shops and then headed into Celtic Fyre.  None of my pictures turned out in here.  Afterwards, Lainey asked for a picture with the "couple" that was getting married in the show.  They seemed thrilled she asked!  They asked her what her name was and they were excited her name is DeLainey.

After we watched the show, we took the train to the backside of the park.  We hadn't ever gone back there.

The boys were THRILLED.  I interrupted their joy to get a picture.  You can tell just how not into pictures they were at that moment.


Then we rode Le Scoot.  I went first with DeLainey and Xander.  Julianne wasn't sure she wanted to ride at all.

Then, we did rider swap and Lainey rode again with Solomon, Brandon and Julianne.

Yes, that is little 3 year old Solomon in front of Brandon... see?

Love it!

We walked through various countries and saw their Food and Wine Festival menus but kept moving.  We were on a mission!  Brandon and I greatly enjoy dark rides and we were bound and determined to go ride the Curse of Darkastle.  It's a dark 3D ride.  I talked the girls into riding with me while Daddy waited in the ride swap area with the boys... And Julianne cried.  She did not like it at all.  It was pretty intense.  Lainey was questioning my sanity about half way through.

But I thought it was lovely!  I didn't want to ruin any of it for Brandon though, so I didn't tell him about it.  We asked the girls if they wanted to ride with Daddy and only Lainey took him up on it.  He had the same scenario that I had.  There are three and they run randomly.  We really want to ride again to see if we can get a different one.

We were all getting pretty hungry and a little hot, so we were excited to see Festhaus in front of us!   Brandon has wanted to eat here for some time so I knew it was a must do for Father's Day.  

This set up is quite interesting.  There are a few different station to choose your food at and then there is a show that takes place on a double sided stage while you eat.

We sat on the back side of the stage and really enjoyed the show.  We split two German sampler platters and a large turkey sandwich.  It was delicious!


I couldn't convince anyone to put their head in the barrels.

Next, we wanted to try a rollercoaster!  Brandon chose Verbolten and said for me to go first.  (Awww... so sweet!)  I asked Lainey if she wanted to ride with me since she was tall enough.  She said yes.  We took some pictures in the queue but it went really fast!  Brandon took Julianne, Xander and Solomon on a nearby kiddie ride. 

Lainey had never been on a REAL rollercoaster and she wasn't so sure she liked it.  When the ride took off she said, "I don't like this!"  And being the supportive, kind mother I am, I leaned over and said, "TOO LATE, SWEETIE!"

She survived.  There was a surprise in the ride that we didn't expect and we pinky promised not to say anything to Daddy.  We didn't want to ruin it for him.

When Brandon got ready to go on the ride... guess who went with him?

Yes... that would be Lainey right next to Brandon.  In the FRONT OF THE RIDE!

He was really shocked by the drop in the dark and couldn't believe we both kept it quiet and didn't warn him.

At this point, we headed into Italy.

We walked through some shops and stumbled upon these artisans.  They were thrilled to see a large family.

They were making flowers out of clay.  We stood and watched for quite some time. 

It was amazing to watch.

They talked to us while they were working.

And gave each of the girls a small piece to play with.  Their piece dried before we left the shop.

I took some pictures around the store, while reminding the children NOT to touch a THING! LOL

For Erika:

I didn't even ask the price of this large bunch of flowers.

This one was $19.95.

Another favorite of ours:

They also had pins and earrings.  They were all beautiful.  Julianne forgot at one point that they were made out of clay and she leaned over to sniff some.

The next place we stopped was at this table.  It was a special demonstration for the Food and Wine Festival.  The lady was making Pegasus out of sugar.  It was a sugar sculpture demonstration.  She gave both of the girls a little sample of the claylike sugar that she was using.  (You can see more in the clear bag on the table.)

More amazing landscaping.  I could walk around the gardens all day!

We rode Escape from Pompeii.  It was a water boat ride with some amazing pyrotechnic work inside.  Julianne got scared when the soundtrack said, "PREPARE TO DIE!"   At the end it is a flume type ride and we got a little wet. 

But there are water cannons that people can pay to squirt at you when you are going around the bend at the end of the ride.  And we got SOAKED. 

Julianne and DeLainey rode again with Brandon while I stood with the boys.  Here is my very own Dora the Explorer checking out the map. 

We ate dinner in Ireland but I didn't take any pictures.  We split a few sampler plates again.

Next we went to the Preschool Forest area.  It was deserted.

We met Elmo and the Cookie Monster (who was HUGE!) Isaiah couldn't take his eyes off of him!

And then the kids rode a few kids rides.

Lainey rode with Xander.

Julianne rode with Solomon.

We rode a few more rides (including a kiddie coaster) and then walked back to the front of the park where we each got a treat and ate on the brick steps in front of the Pirate 4D show.  We can't wait to see what they put in it's place.  And then we headed out of the park.

We made great memories and had a ton of fun.  Win, win!


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