Archive for June, 2010

Space and Rocket Center

Friday, June 25th, 2010

We made a short trip to Huntsville today to see the US Space and Rocket Center. The kids have wanted to go for a very long time. Ironically, we picked today thinking it would be a generic weekday and not very crowded, but we later discovered that it was the first day for a major Star Wars exhibit (the website even had a count-down running with the number of hours until the exhibit opened this morning). It also turned out to be graduation day for a ton of kids doing Space Camp, so all of them and their families were in the park, too. Fortunately the place is huge, and we weren’t going to the Star Wars thing (I swear) so crowds weren’t a problem.

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Dinner at Sharky’s

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

We’ve seen this place all week and finally decided to eat here. What an amazing atmosphere. We had a table outside overlooking the beach just as the sun was setting. There was a perfect breeze. Some of the karaoke left a little to be desired, but stayed for a long time just enjoying our nice dinner on the water. (all the pictures were from when we were waiting to be seated)

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More Choppy Waves

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

We have been so lucky with the weather this trip. We had another amazing day. The beauty of going to Gulf World so early in the morning was that we still had pretty much the whole afternoon free today to spend on the beach, and it was another sunny and breezy day with fun, choppy waves.

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Gulf World – Dolphin Show

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

By far and away the best show was the dolphin show. Not only was it really great, but afterwards the kids each got to shake hands with one of the dolphins.

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Gulf World – Sea Lion Show

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

This was definitely one of the cooler shows at the place. I didn’t take a lot of pictures, but the sea lion was really well trained and did some really cool stuff.

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Gulf World – Silly Signs

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

The kids just love these things, and there were a bunch of them throughout the place:

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Gulf World – Exhibits

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

We spent all morning at a place called Gulf World, not too far from our condo. I was a little concerned about whether it would be worth all the time we had to invest in it, but it really was a great place. They had a bunch of shows, several of which were really great (and one of which was a real dud). There was also a large animal exhibit area with lots of different things to see, including some cool sea turtles and some playful dolphins that kept throwing their toy at us.

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Dinner at Shark Place

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

We ate dinner at a cool place with all kinds of shark and deep-sea fishing stuff all over the walls. None of us actually had shark (or even fish) for dinner, but it was cool to see all the stuff. Unfortunately, I forgot the camera and only had the one on my cell phone.

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It Doesn’t Get Much Better Than This

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Those words are written above the entertainment center in our condo and they pretty much served as the theme for our Florida trip, which really couldn’t have been better.

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Choppy Waves

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

The sea was angry today, my friends, and we had some awesome, choppy waves to play in. Everyone was exhausted by the time we decided to take a break (especially Daddy, who had to keep throwing the kids into the big waves, a favorite game of theirs).

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Castle Donnelly

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

We had a great time constructing a sand structure the kids called “Castle Donnelly” this morning:

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Amazing Rainbow

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

We saw the biggest rainbow I’ve ever seen this morning. Here’s the best I could do for a picture of it:

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Late Dinner

Monday, June 21st, 2010

It was hard to drag the kids away from the pool, but eventually they were so hungry they wanted to leave. We went for dinner around 8:00 (way later than they would normally eat) and we found a cool beach-side restaurant with live music.

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Swimming in the Pool

Monday, June 21st, 2010

We’ve been at the beach a lot, but now we finally made it to check out our pool (one of the three here, but this is the nicest, plus it overlooks the beach, which is cool). The kids made friends immediately, of course, and had a great time.

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Dolphins!

Monday, June 21st, 2010

We saw lots of dolphins while we were heading home on our boat ride. This is the one time I really wish I had my bigger camera, but mostly it was just being there and the excitement of finding them that was so great.

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Shell Island

Monday, June 21st, 2010

We took a “three hour tour” to a place called Shell Island. It stormed while we rode out there, but then it cleared and we had an awesome time on the island. The kids found tons of shells and even a few whole sand dollars. It was so great because there were almost no other people around us, especially once we went looking for shells.

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Another Beautiful Morning

Monday, June 21st, 2010

We’ve been so lucky with both the weather (beautiful) and oil spill (not here yet, but very close!). This morning looks to be the start of another beautiful day.

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Evening on the Beach

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

We went to a place called Pier Park for dinner, then walked home along the beach. It was unbelievably beautiful outside and there was an awesome breeze. We watched the sun set from the pier. The sun was the most amazing color of orange, but I just couldn’t capture it at all with this little camera. We won’t forget it, though.

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Welcome to Florida

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

We arrived in Panama City Beach for the first time today. Of course we got into our condo then went to the beach as soon as possible. The beach is beautiful here.

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Father’s Day

Saturday, June 19th, 2010

The kids were so sweet after we went swimming tonight and they couldn’t wait until tomorrow for me to open my Father’s Day presents (Jake actually gave me his last week because he was so excited — thanks, buddy!). I took the first two pictures below, then Lauren took over as the photographer. She was so excited about it and did a great job, just like she did at the wedding a few months ago:

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