I must have been born with rubber in my veins because the road - both dirt and paved - seems to call to me. It’s a form of freedom enjoyed here in America that, sometimes, we take for granted. The ability and pleasure to move about as we see fit and at-will is a glorious one.
There is a distinct crispness to the air I breathe at just over eight thousand feet sea level. There even seems to be some sort of shortness in supply, as my California lungs aren't yet adjusted to the thin yet clean air found at this outer sphere of the Rockies. Thinner though it may be, it still whispers and sings as it swims through the branches and needles of the evergreen trees standing tall around me. I close my eyes and the stress of civilization as I know it blows away.
Nate and I have lived in San Diego for 8 years, and our kids have lived here all their lives. We've been to SeaWorld dozens of times, and have met numerous SeaWorld employees outside of the park. To say that it's a cornerstone of our community is an understatement. It's one of the first spots to come to mind when people think of San Diego, and readers email in questions about it on a weekly basis. There's actually a trapeze studio in our neighborhood where our family has trained with a few of the park's acrobatic performers. True story! In all that time, though, we'd never seen behind the scenes and really grasped the purpose of SeaWorld. Last week, we got an incredible glimpse at the rescue program behind the entertainment.
We just got back from an awesome little trip hosted by Disney! We got to visit the parks here in California and witness firsthand how all of our favorite superheroes are taking over California Adventure for the Summer of Heroes. There are tons of awesome limited-time thrills, but it's not all just a temporary attraction! A bunch of our favorite sights are said to be sticking around indefinitely.
Some of our good friends went to Orlando awhile ago and came back raving endlessly about the hotel. "Our room was as big as a house!" they exclaimed. I'll admit I cocked my head to the side a bit and laughed. Of ALL the things to do in Orlando, it seemed strange that these guys were writing home about a resort. I love a good mattress and hot tub, sure, but can that really top thrill rides and fireworks?
I am more and more about the grand day out with the family as the boys and I get older. I spend a good deal of my time at work thinking about two things I should do more of when I’m off. Working out, and spending time with my small army. So far I’m only getting to one of those. I’ll just cut down on doughnuts for now.
We have no shortage of options when it comes to theme parks here in Southern California (and I'm a big fan of ALL of them), but Knott's Berry Farm holds a special place in my heart. My grandparents frequently took me to Knott's Berry Farm when I was a kid, wistfully telling me tales of the days that they would visit during my mom's childhood. “This is the oldest theme park in America,” grandpa would say, launching into an explanation about the historical significance of the train tracks running throughout the park.It was on one of these trains that I was “held up” for the first time. I remember it vividly. A cartoony, bearded man stormed onto our car and staggered, bowlegged, right on over to me. “Hey Raggedy Ann, give me all yer money!” he said in his gruffest tongue-in-cheek voice to the doll I clutched in my four-year-old arms.I got to re-live that moment last week with my own four-year-old, and it was just as nostalgic as I envisioned.