It's becoming a summer tradition around here, and every year I question whether we need to go back multiple years in a row, but I'm never sorry that we do. And the older the boys get, the more fun we all have. With Adventureland being just two hours from home, and after getting extremely discounted tickets through a friend of mine, it was kind of a no brainer this year, and it turned out to be the perfect way to put a close on our summer.
We packed up the van on a Thursday morning - the four of us, my parents and plenty of snacks for the ride. The boys wore their swimming trunks for shorts, we had our suits on under our clothes and we headed out first thing in the morning to be there when the park opened. We couldn't have asked for better weather that day, and the crowd was the perfect size. If we did wait in lines, it was only for about five minutes at the most. The boys were so incredibly excited, as they had been asking to go all summer long.
There were the memories of their favorite rides from past years... the train, the flying airplanes, the Frog Hopper (or as Brandon calls it, the Froggy Space Shot), and the anticipation of the water park. Especially that. I was anxious to see who would be the brave one this trip. Last year, Brandon actually tried more rides than Jaden, but this year the tables turned and Jaden tried a lot of new things for the first time. We all went on our fair share of rides, and Mommy and Papa even got a chance to do the Outlaw... one of our all-time faves.
I was so proud of Jaden for all the new things he tried. Normally my cautious and hesitant one, he branched out this trip. One of his favorites... the Scrambler. Or as he called it when he asked to go on it again before we left for the night... "The Egg Scrambler." ;)
The much anticipated Frog Hopper. Brandon went on this thing multiple times. With Jaden, with Mommy, while waiting for Jaden to go on other rides, while waiting for a ride to get fixed. He LOVES this thing. "It makes my tummy tickle!!"
We got such a good laugh out of Brandon on the trucks...
He kept sticking his arm out the window to adjust the mirrors and as the ride was going, he kept one hand on the steering wheel and one arm hanging out the window like he sees other guys do. When the ride stopped, he left his arm hanging out the window and yelled to us, "I did this!" He thought he was so cool. ;)
Of course you can't go to Adventureland and not feed the fish...
We broke up the day really nicely. After lunch and as we started getting hot, we walked right into the water park to cool off. Since we already had our suits on, all we had to do was find some chairs, lather on some sunscreen and we were set. The water park was the highlight of the day for the boys. From the pirate boat and smaller water slides, to the wave pool with the roller coasters in the background to Kokomo Kove, which is basically a giant jungle gym of water slides... we had so much fun, and my cheek muscles hurt at the end from smiling so much at watching the boys so happy.
The wave pool was a huge hit. My dad said it's the best one he's ever been in, and Jaden couldn't get enough of standing near the deepest end near the biggest waves. He even made friends with another little boy who shared his tube with him and followed us around for a good part of the afternoon. And though Brandon was somewhat terrified of the larger waves, he was perfectly happy to splash and jump around in the shallower end.
Jaden could have stayed here for hours with multiple taller and twistier water slides perfect for his size. Brandon didn't quite meet the height requirements for most of it, but he didn't seem to mind as he spent the majority of his time watching other kids go down slides and meandering through the nearby splash pad.
After we were done with the water, we all changed into dry clothes and went back to the rides to try some we hadn't gotten to yet and to go back to our favorites one last time before leaving to grab supper and drive home.
The boys got to stop for a treat while Papa Bob and I rode the roller coaster.
And we got Jaden on the Galleon before we left. This just happened to be one of my favorite rides as a kid and it turns out to still be one of my favorites after not having ridden it in several years. Jaden was contemplating going on it all day and he finally decided to do it right before we left. He wasn't sure if he liked it... but my dad captured a picture of him all smiles as soon as he got off of it. :)
Brandon really wanted to go on the swings over the park, so while we stayed on the ground with Jaden so he could do some more favorite rides, Brandon and Daddy rode back and forth over the park a couple of times.
And of course the airplanes one last time before leaving...
This was Brandon's face when the ride came to a stop...
...and this was his face when the ride operator told him he could stay on for another ride. :)
Sorry for picture overload... but it was a good day. We'll be going back. :)