Thursday, July 29, 2010

Day Trip- Arkadelphia Aquatic Park Again

Today was another scorching hot day; therefore, a great day to go to the water park in Arkadelphia. This time 4 adults and 4 kids in their carseats all piled into Heather's big white bus. Ok... it's not a bus... but I'm not exactly sure what kind of vehicle it is... but it seated all of us very comfortably. Anyway, we arranged ourselves and had a nice (fairly whine-free) trip to lunch at Burger Barn (great place to eat) and then a quick stop at Walmart (because Camden's Walmart says Swimmer diapers aren't in season).

The kids loved the water once we got to the pool. Colin (happily with his life jacket on) showed his skills on the frog slide. Ellie and Caroline were interested and eager to walk all around the shallow area. And Sophie began, as usual, clinging on to my neck, swimsuit, and whatever else she could hold that would prevent her from touching the water. Eventually she began to relax and walk around a bit. She further surprised me when she made her way to the frog slide and up the stairs. We did a couple trips down the frog slide together and she loved it!

Eventually I got tired of going down and Sophie humored me by going up by herself and being comfortable just holding my hand as she went down the slide by herself as well. By the end of the day though, she was going up and down the slide all by herself without any assistance from me. I was very very proud of her!

The videos and pictures were provided by Heather. Thanks Heather!!!

The trip back was better than the trip there because after spending at least 3 hours in the pool , all 4 kids nestled into their car seats and took a nap on the way back to Camden.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Bartons Make a Trip to Arkansas

This weekend some of the Bartons came to Camden, AR... including Sophie's Grammy and Grandpa Barton. After taking the Bartons on a tour of Camden, we spent Thursday evening going on the hiking trail at Poison Springs. Sophie did a wonderful job hiking essentially the whole way!

On Friday, Andrew and Ashley went to Magic Springs Amusement Park, while my parents, Sophie, and I spent time around the Hot Springs area, visiting some of the shops along Bath house Row, and eventually going to Garvan Gardens.

Then on Saturday, we visited Suzanne's Fruit Farm where we picked some plums and peaches.

Sophie fell asleep in the car and didn't wake up until we had picked, paid, and returned to Camden with our fruit. I didn't have the heart to wake her up when we were at the farm.

Eventually, the Bartons needed to leave for Branson, Missouri and Silver Dollar City before returning back to Kansas for work on Monday. But we had a good time and Sophie got some Grandparent time!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Day Trip- Garvan Gardens

Today we were super adventurous by taking the kiddos on an hour and a half journey in the car to Hot Springs, knowing that there was a good chance that it would be a hot day. The kids did very well and the gardens were beautiful! I think I got my work out in though with the various trails, but it was absolutely worth it and I'd gladly do it again.

Here are some of our photos from our adventures:

The kids LOVED the Koi Pond:

Also on site they had a beautiful chapel with wooden cross beams and glass. It was a beautiful building with an absolutely stunning view.

Later we at at Chick-fil-a, which happened to have a playhouse area. So that also helped burn some energy.

And made the ride home... quite peaceful.

For more information on Garvan Gardens CLICK HERE

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Louisiana Purchase State Park

On our way to Memphis I noticed a sign on the interstate navigating toward the Louisiana Purchase State Park. The Louisiana Purchase State Park was on my "things to see list" while we were living in Arkansas. And on our way back to Camden I figured that it wasn't likely that we'd be in the area any time soon, so why not take a detour home so we could see it.

The park is essentially in a swamp. However, they had a nice boardwalk which prevented us from getting wet and was a nice way of corralling Sophie in.

After purchasing the area from the French, (known as the Louisiana Purchase- which sold the land for 3 cents an acre) President James Madison ordered an official survey of the purchase area, a survey that began in what is now Arkansas and led to the settlement of the American West. The initial point was the first surveyor mark in the monumental task of surveying the entire Louisiana Territory, the vast territory including the present Arkansas and 12 other states, an area stretching from the Gulf of Mexico to Canada.

Anyway, it was well worth the trip even though there wasn't a whole lot to it. I think Oscar and Sophie enjoyed a break from the car... and I enjoyed the history of the area.

For more information CLICK HERE

Mini-Vacation to Memphis, TN

This weekend we had planned on meeting Brian's college roommate and friend- Micah in Memphis. Micah graduated with Brian from FHSU and had received a job teaching at Mississippi U. However, Micah got sick so we didn't get to see him, but we still decided to enjoy the weekend.

Memphis is the home of Elvis Presley's home- Graceland. However, with the general home tour tickets costing $30/adult... we decided to skip the actual tour and just drive by the place itself. From the road, you can't see much, but we were able to get a glimpse of the home in a distance as well as see Elvis' private jet.

We then made our way to the Memphis Zoo. I was very impressed with the zoo and it had lots of animals I hadn't seen before. And some I had.

Sophie also seemed to enjoy it since she spent some time out of the stroller and walking around with her dad.

We also drove past Beale Street, which is fairly equivalent to the Vegas strip but in a much much smaller. We didn't stop partically due to the fact that we didn't bring enough cash to pay for parking, but also that it isn't exactly the safest neighborhood during the evening and night hours.

We finished our day with supper at On The Border. Even Sophie enjoyed herself. She was dipping her animal crackers in their salsa. She loves their salsa!

By the time we got back to the hotel, it was bed time. Sophie thought it was a wonderful idea to have Oscar sleep in bed with her.

Oscar didn't share the same opinion. So eventually, he slept with us.