Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Cincinnati Mini Vacation

Dave had a four-day weekend so we took a mini-vacation to Cincinnati to check out their Children's Museum and the Newport Aquarium. Dave booked the pet sitter and hotel, loaded the van, and we headed out Saturday morning.

We bought a membership to the museum a few months ago. With it, we also get admission to museums in Dayton and Columbus. We've been to Boonshaft, the one in Dayton, a couple of times but never Cincinnati so we didn't know what to expect. Turns out it's a really great museum and only 45 minutes away from our house. We'll definitely be back.

Dave dropped us off and parked so we hung out in the atrium for a few minutes. We found one of these little machines that makes souvenir pennies. I hate buying souvenirs but I used to collect these pennies in Europe and was happy to drop 51 cents for this one. Solana loved it! Chloe watched in admiration, just like a little sister should, as Solana cranked the wheel.

Museum highlights
Chloe loved the water play area.
They both loved the ball room. Solana's catching balls in her sack as the dropped from a bucket. There were thousands of those little balls in there. Chloe wandered around a sea of balls kicking them. I'm not sure how she managed not to fall.
Chloe enjoyed the toddler area. She's really into imaginary play right now. These lego farm animals were perfect. "Mommy, cow widing! Moo!" Chloe yells most of her sentences. I anticipate we'll need to work on her "inside voice."
"Mommy! Dinadoor eating a twee! Mmm mm mm Yuuuuummmmy twee!"
Time to fill up! We should have bought a hybrid.
Bus driver Solana is making her final stop of the day.
There are three museums in the same building. After the Children's museum we went back up to the atrium at ate our packed lunch. I looked around at everyone else eating pizza and nachos and was glad to have brought tuna/egg salad sandwiches, bananas, prunes, and cheetos. Fortunately for me, the girls aren't old enough to care that our tuna/egg salad probably stunk up the place. After lunch we entered the Natural History Museum. Dave and I worked on the scavenger hunt and Solana amazed us with her dinosaur knowledge. We sort of breezed through because it was already well past Chloe's nap time and she was getting impatient.

Here's our only family photo of the whole trip.

After we checked in at the Hilton and enjoyed listening to the girls freaking out over the room we headed out for dinner. We walked about 2 minutes to a place called Local 127. The atmosphere wasn't exactly kid friendly and the girls were "starving" but we managed. The food was divine.
Back at the hotel the girls curled up on their very own pull-out bed. That was soooo cool! This was their first time sleeping together and they couldn't have been happier about it! Dave and I thought they'd pass out watching TV but that never happened. We finally turned out their light some time during the 9 o'clock hour. And yes, that's a pacifier in Chloe's mouth. Sigh.

They magically slept through the night and everyone woke up in good spirits Sunday morning. We ordered breakfast room service and then headed down to the pool. Dave went first and enjoyed some steam room time. And I took a dip in the hot tub at the end our pool time. Finally, we got everyone bathed, packed up, and headed out to the aquarium. The aquarium is just across the bridge into Kentucky - a 7 minute trip from our hotel. It was PACKED. We enjoyed it as best as we could but the crowd was a bit much. I was glad to see Solana zipping around the crowd to find empty spots in front of the aquariums. When I was a kid I think I was too timid to do that and would have missed out on everything. We'll need to go back during the week some time.

Check out those crabs! Wow!
I think I look pretty in this picture and that rarely happens so I'm posting it! Ha.

I was worried that Chloe wouldn't be able to see anything and be bored but she could see a few things. There were some jellyfish that glowed and a few of those glass tunnels that you walk through and are surrounded by water and fish. She loved it when the really big fish swam by. The movement helped.

Solana especially enjoyed the glass floors.

After an exhausting weekend of museums we finally headed home. As we passed the IKEA Dave mentioned a shelving unit he'd been wanting to get me. Chloe was asleep and Solana was watching a movie. I suggested he go in for it while I wait in the van with the girls. We turned off the engine but kept the power on for Solana's movie. Dave knew just what he wanted so he wouldn't be too long. After a while it started to get cold so I texted him and he suggested I start the engine since he'd be a little while yet. It...wouldn't...start. We'd killed the battery! Then, as I was freaking out about the dead battery and trying furiously to call Dave the people parked next to us set off their car alarm in order to find their car. Guess who woke up screaming? Not exactly how we'd envisioned that particular 10 minutes of our weekend to go. Dave found someone to jump the van and pushed it out of the parking spot to do so. I'm glad he's strong! We left without the shelves and sort of wishing we hadn't stopped. Dave went out to replace the battery after we got home and that was the end to our mini vacation.



A Goldsworthy Note said...

Sounds like quite a busy weekend. You've inspired me to plan a short trip to Atlanta for Grant friendly adventures. I'm hoping they have a children's museum. I love the family photo...those are always my favorites. Oh, and you look great if that pic, but you're crazy because you always look pretty in your pictures.

Emily and Troy Williams said...

That stinks how the trip ended up, but thank goodness you were all together when the battery died! Just imagine if you'd been with the girls by yourself. Ugh. Otherwise, sounds like a fun trip!

Holbergs said...

Really? Dinadoor eating a twee?!!! Could she be any cuter? I think not!!!

I love how in the family pic, you are the only one with your face not somewhat partially hidden! I think you look really pretty in the family pic, as well as your other one! You're such a dork!