After the “fun park” and a short nap in the car,
we were at the aquarium to see the penguins!

Mercedes LOVED all the fishes… but couldn’t wait to see the penguins.

She was also tired of having her pictures taken… can you tell…

She was doing this cute face imitating the fish behind us,
who had their mouths open while they swam around.
But all of a sudden she was camera shy.

We’ve never been to the aquarium in our state,
so we have nothing to compare this one too.
As aquariums go, I’d imagine it was just like the rest.

They had a shark tunnel with a walk way underneath.
And we got to witness two feedings sessions,
One for the fish and one for the sting rays.

Then it was time for the PENGUINS!!

Mercedes was so excited!!
They had tunnels you could go through to get to a porthole.
She had a BLAST with that!!
Mommy & Daddy both “got” to go with her.

“”OmeEre Guys!!”
(translation… Come Here Guys!)

She loved seeing the penguins.
It was of course a lot of marketing for one exhibit.
Mommy thought it was kind of a let down, but Mercedes loved it.
And that’s all that really matters, right?!?!

Go Karts!!

While in Tennessee we spent some time at a “fun park”.
Not really n amusement park, but more than just mini-golf.

Mercedes took her first Go Kart ride (among others).


She was a little apprehensive at first when Daddy buckled her in,
but then they got going and it was all smiles and giggles!!

Crazy girl, had a blast!!

Next they rode the bumper boats.

Again, apprehensive at first, then giggles and smiles!!

Next it was time fr some kiddie rides (much to Daddy’s disliking).

The kids all took a ride on the ferris wheel and the pirate boat.

The rest of the family went their separate ways and Mercedes was still at it.

First on her list…

The AIRPLANE of course!!

Not nearly as cool as the real thing, but cool enough!!

She got lots of rides in and then it was off to the Aquarium.

Yes, those rosy cheeks indicate it was HOTTER THAN (insert hot noun here)!

She was a trooper!  Late nights, short naps, and still a bundle of energy!

Christmas Hotel

My Mother-in-law LOVES Christmas Stores!

I LOVE Christmas stores!

We spent an entire morning in a GIGANTIC Christmas Store.

🙂 It was heaven!  🙂

Took this picture for my cousin… Life Sized (almost) Fontanini nativity.

(These were for sale… $22,000)

After lunch, I convienced Jim to take me across the street to visit the Christmas Hotel.

Yes, you read that correctly…


I went inside to take a picture or two and check it out.

While taking pictures, I net Debbie from the Decor department.

She told me about the themes that are on each floor of the hotel…

YES Themed decoration on each floor.

She then made all my dreams come true and asked if I wanted…



I went out to the car… told Jim to park…
Put Mercedes in in the backpack… and got our Christmas on!!

Each room had a wreath in it.

The two room suites each had TWO FULL SIZED decorated trees.

EVERY room had a fireplace with a decorated mantel.

I can’t decided if I want to take another trip to TN just to stay at the hotel…

OR just open up my own hotel here in Colorado.

How much fun would it be to work on the decoration team of a CHRISTMAS HOTEL?!?!

Fun Times in Gatlinburg

Before going into town to go shopping,
we spent some time fishin’ in the pond near the cabin.

Mercedes’ had a great time “fishin'”.

Gatlinburg is a tourists’ town on steroids!

There were shop galore.

More Mini-Golf establishments than you can imagine…
seriously, there was a new themed Mini-Golf park in between every five shops!

Oh, and chochkees everywhere!!

Let’s not forget the museums… the wild, the fun, the obscure.

Our personal favorite was the Cooter’s store with the Duke’s of Hazard Museum!

We found the cutest little square that was designed like a little German town.

It had some fun shops… Mommy LOVED that!

Some beautiful shade trees and benches for relaxin’… Daddy LOVED those!

And it had an old fashioned donut shop… Mercedes LOVED that!

Did I mention the little square was cute?!

I had a GREAT time taking pictures!

Cabin Life

More on our trip to TN.

Did you know the humidity in the south is STICKY?!

Thank Goodness for AC.

We had a great time just hanging out in the cabin.

Don’t get me wrong, we did LOTS of fun things,

but hanging out in the cabin was a favorite!!

Mommy read a great book. (The Thirteenth Tale)

Daddy read Sherlock Holmes.

Took lots of naps.

Played with the cousins.

Ate too much!

Summer Trip to TN

Last week we spent some great FFB (Forced Family Bonding) time with Daddy’s side of the family.

Grandma & Papa found a cabin in the hills of Tennessee and invited us to come.

It was Baby Girl’s first airplane ride.  And she was EXCITED!

Remember we were gone for a week… eight days actually.

Mommy tried her best to pack light.

We actually used everything we took and I didn’t wish I had anything.

If you’re counting, we took four suitcases, one stroller, and one carseat.
Mercedes had her own suitcase full of toys.
There was a suitcase full of swim stuff & the blow up bed.
The third suitcase had all of Mommy’s toys.
And the big suitcase was filled with our clothes.
Not bad for a week.

Mercedes was an angel at the airport and on the airplane.

Mommy got some fun toys to keep her busy.

Whiteboard with markers… Chuggington Trains…

While waiting to take off… she LOVED watching SpongeBob on the TV. 🙂

Oh yeah… and the plane served cookies!

Traveling with Baby Girl couldn’t have been more fun!!