We had quite a few adventures last week while we were on vacation. Our plan was to visit some Virginia "landmarks" and relive some of the vacation memories that Jon and I had from our childhoods and then perhaps add a few new experiences for all of us. We have some wonderful friends that very graciously offered us the use of their cabin- we enjoyed all the comforts of home and couldn't have wanted for anything better!
We started off at Natural Bridge.
We had prepared Cooper for the trip and had shown him pictures and talked about what we'd be seeing. He was really excited about seeing the bridge, and the place that George Washington carved his initials. The absolute highlight for him though, was staying at the hotel. You'd have thought we were staying at the Beverly Hilton- the kid was beside himself with excitement. I reserved a room with a balcony- a balcony is actually on his wish list for Christmas this year (more on this I'm sure in later posts) and you would have thought that I gave him million dollars! Anywho....the trip to Natural Bridge and the stay at the hotel were a huge success. Jon and I enjoyed the visit as well- it's definitely an overnight only type place- and you can easily be sucked into the kitschy stuff surrounding it- but we did the bridge and the hike to the falls, ate in the dining room, and called it a day!
Cooper & Jon checking for wildlife
Cooper & Me on our balcony
We left Natural Bridge and headed to the Virginia Safari Zoo. I had heard some good things, and we did a bit of research...but nothing could have prepared me for the experience that we had. If you are ever in the area, you have GOT to stop by! The Zoo isn't the most impressive part-but the Safari.....wow! Truth be told, it got overwhelming pretty quickly. Once we got a feel for what could happen, the rest of the visit was smooth and enjoyable. Let me just say that the food that they give you to feed the animals must be amazing- because they LOVE it. Take a gander at the beginning of our drive through the park. You'll hear a shot-like sound at about 18 seconds into the clip. That, is the sound of an emu frantically pecking at the food in my bucket.
Once we recovered from our fits of laughter, we were able to re-group and only fed from one window at a time- and only when there were single (or at least more manageable) groups of animals. Cooper's belly laughs are enough to cheer me up on the worst of days. I've seen this about 50 times and it makes me laugh each time! Enjoy!
When we were leaving, Cooper said- "this is the best vacation in the whole entire world!". That is what makes being a parent the best job ever!
Next stop- Shenandoah, Virginia for some relaxation, fun on the river and to explore the caverns in the area. The cabin was perfect- tucked in a remote corner of the Shenandoah River and exactly what we love the most- simple comforts. We loved spending time exploring. Jon and Cooper braved the river to search for creatures and to tube. I took pictures and read a great book!
Big News!!! We had a visit from the Tooth Fairy- Cooper lost his very first tooth on our 1st night at the cabin. Thankfully, that Tooth Fairy has great finding skills and Cooper was thrilled! Evidently, 1st teeth are rewarded with $5 and a note that sets expectations- subsequent teeth will be worth much less. Congratulations, Buddy!!
Ok, my post is getting long....I will capture some other vacation tidbits on my Thankful Thursday post this week. For now, I am so glad that we're home safely and have memories that will surely last a lifetime. We had such fun, saw some incredible sights and learned some life lessons that are priceless.
I simply adore my boys!