Archive for July, 2008

July 18th, 2008

What I did with my summer vacation

I can’t believe that the summer is almost over already!  Alex starts school in just two and a half weeks – where has the time gone?  We didn’t do a whole lot this summer, but we did take a trip to Pennsylvania for Independence Day.  The small town I grew up in usually has an old fashioned Fourth of July celebration, complete with swimming races in the lake, bike parades, egg tossing, and a HUGE fireworks display to end the day.  Sadly, the down economy affected this too, and the fireworks didn’t happen.  They still did the races and parades, though, so all was not lost.

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The drive to Pennsylvania from Alabama is not a quick one.  It usually takes us 13ish hours, but with a baby this time, it took a bit longer.  Alex was able to make himself quite comfortable with his iPod, though.  One good thing about the long drive is it gives us a chance to stop at some Chipotle restaurants along the way.  We LOVE Chipotle and impatiently wait for the day when they finally open one in Huntsville.

This year, we had more downtime than usual and took the opportunity to visit Niagara Falls, Canada.  It’s only a short drive from Erie and Alex hadn’t ever been there.  When I was growing up, Niagara Falls was our yearly summer vacation destination and I was perfectly fine with that.  I had a blast there every year.  There were a ton of things to see and do.  It seems now that it’s a bit more tourist-y, but probably is still a good choice.  I say probably because I don’t think the city got a fair shake on our visit this year.  We got there later in the day than I had intended, so we were all a little tired and cranky.  Oh, and it was Canada Day.  We got to share the falls with about 20,000 other people enjoying Canada’s birthday.  (Note to self:  check the Canadian holiday calendar before planning the next trip to Niagara Falls.)  Regardless, we had a good time and Alex said more than once that he wasn’t ever going to forget this day.

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The highlight of the trip to Niagara Falls for Alex was probably his ride on the SkyWheel.  There are a lot of places in Niagara Falls to spend money on games and trinkets and normally Alex would be all over that.  For whatever reason, the only thing he asked to do was ride on this gigantic ferris wheel.  It was pretty expensive, but Rod pointed out that this was the only thing he had asked to do and it would probably be what he remembered best.  So, we bought our tickets and waited in line.

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I’m happy to report that we were not disappointed with our ride.  We were rewarded for our long-ish wait in line with a terrific view of the city and the falls.  Our timing was perfect for a great sunset view, though I didn’t manage to get any good photos of that.  The photo of the city and Skylon Tower above was taken from our completely enclosed and climate controlled gondola.

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There’s the whole happy family.  Not the greatest photo, but it was hard to get the camera and self timer to work well on the tiny ledge of the moving car!

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All in all, it was a great trip and I think we all had fun.  Next time we might spend a night or two in Niagara Falls so we don’t have to do so much driving all in one day.  I think it’s safe to say that we won’t be doing that on Canada Day, though…


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