One of the days in NH we went to Storyland. Now Dave went to Storyland as a child, it's very close to his family home home in NH and I wanted to check it out. I was not prepared for how awesome it would be for a 2.5 year old Nolan. Seriously this place was awesome.
Below is the infamous ball pit that Dave's brother got 'lost' in. He lay down at the bottom and put the balls on top giving his family a bit scare. I'd heard this story many times but didn't imagine how big the ball pit would be.
What was so awesome about Storyland was everything was NOT a 'ride' with a line. There were little houses to explore, like the three little bears house that had about 5 foot ceilings and three chairs and three beds (each small, medium and large- you know the story). There were some slides, a giant pirate area complete with big wooden boats to climb around on as well two large boat rides. There were rides too, but not everything had a line to wait in, which can be painful for a 2.5 year old.
So overall Nolan had a great time. A few times he decided that the wait in a line was too long and would jump out. Once we had to stop a ride and get off midway because he was scared (well, because he saw another girl get scared and get off the ride). But overall he had a great time. He was very excited to drive the antique cars, one of my all-time favorite rides at parks. I admit, I got choked up waiting in line remembering how many times I waited anxious to 'drive' with my parents.
And he loved it. We found a smaller version of this ride later at the park which was totally awesome and no line so we rode on that 3 times too.
Overall this was infinitely better than Sesame Place. This was better organized, cleaner and well thought out. Nolan had a really great time at Storyland. We did too.
What a summer this has been! I've been so fortunate to be able to have gone on 4 separate week-long trips. And when I was younger (not that I'm 'old') or perhaps when I was sans child, this would have thrilled me to pieces- I loved to travel. However I can't tell you how happy I am to be done with traveling for a bit. Traveling with a toddler can offer challenges you might not have thought of. Like when he bit into (and popped) his vacation air-bed. You know, the one we borrowed from friends. Yeah, that was awesome. Lots of things surprised me this summer, really.
Like when you're at an amusement park filled with all sorts of awesome rides and slides and ball pits (Story Land in NH) and Nolan says 'Let's climb on this and make chicken sounds'. Just sometimes the things he says just comes out of nowhere.
Or when we waited in line for, oh, maybe 7 minutes, and when he was 3 people before his turn he changed his mind and didn't want to go on that ride anymore... Also something that was really interesting to him was this huge (cold) marble ball that floated on water that he could spin. It was kinda cool.
I'll get to all the great activities that we enjoyed last week in the upcoming blogs. But I have to say, it's nice to be home. There have been so many things put on the back burner until after this trip was over. Now we look forward to some fun days exploring some neat habitats we learned about in Nature class, enjoying some regular visits to the gym, with friends, walks in the neighborhood, playing with letters and, oh yeah, potty training.
Growing up as the granddaughter of a retired lobsterman meant having lobsters a lot more often than other children might. The fishermen would come up from their boats straight to my Grampa's house with a bucket of lobsters. We'd have lobster races on this very floor every time we had lobsters. Though they don't really move too much.
So when we had lobster last week, it was so fun to see Nolan's reaction to it. It took a little encouragement to get him to touch the lobster.
First he started with the antenna, then held Gramma's hand while she touched the lobster.
Then he touched it himself (I'm so proud!)
Then we took them all out before we cooked them.
Nolan learning how the lobsters swim (by using their tails) and getting a good view of their legs and claws.
And while he wasn't too interested in the meat of the lobster he loved crunching on the shells. We gave him a tail flipper to suck on and he did for a while. He took a single bite of lobster and we all cheered. No sense in forcing the kid to eat my yummy dinner, right?
A week ago my mom informed me she'd be heading to my Grampa's house in Scituate MA for a week. It wasn't a lot of notice but we were free. So we headed up to see her.
There was a LOT of work to do in the house to get it ready to sell (so sad) but she got lots done.
And there was even time to play at the beach.
Now, this beach is special for so many reasons, where my mom learned how to swim as a child, the beach her family dog was named after, where I spent many beach trips in the summertime as a kid and the fact that the water is cold. Like real cold. Like 55 degrees or something.
So thank goodness this was as deep into the water Nolan went. Hypothermia can be troublesome to treat.
He had a great time. My mom got lots taken care of. It was nice to be back at the house again. If you know anyone who wants a house with Scitaute Harbor views, please contact me.
Yesterday we gave Nolan a special surprise. For background, he is completely obsessed with bikes and whenever we see one he tries to climb on it (even if it's a grown-up bike). He stops and watches other kids ride theirs at the playground and in the neighborhood.
This was a spur of the moment decision to give him one. I've been thinking about it for a while but didn't think Dave would be for it.
Then we found ourselves at Target on a stormy Sunday afternoon. We hadn't collected the obligatory/minimum $100 worth of items before we were ready to leave (what is it about that store???) and Nolan begged to go look at bikes. That's when it happened, I suggested it. Dave looked at the bikes for a long time. Then Dave picked this one (in a box) which makes me think Nolan didn't suspect a thing.
So here he is. We gave him his special surprise last night. I told him to thank Daddy for his bike and forgot to mention that he should thank me too. So Dave got an overwhelming number of thank yous last night. Today Nolan woke up asking to ride his bike. I suggested after 1.5 hours of learning to ride it that his legs needed a break. So we played for a bit and then went back for another 30 minutes or so. He's getting the hang of it.
A few days ago I came around the corner to find Nolan 'reading' a book to Monkey. He was sitting on the bed and I could hear him saying "monkey, sit on my lap, I read you story". Oh my goodness. I didn't run to get the camera, I stayed and watched, heart melting. Once I was discovered I ran to get my camera and tried to convince him to read to Monkey again. This was as close as I got.
A rule we made is that you must wear shoes and a helmet when riding the scooter. So here he is, following the rules. We are enjoying the scooter a lot more now that it's on the deck and not on the road. Nolan loves riding it but for only 45 seconds, maybe 2 minutes at most. So it being on the deck allows for better enjoyment for all.
Wow, it's already Thursday? How did that happen? We went peach picking this weekend at a local farm. I LOVE peaches and was thrilled at the idea of picking some fresh and local.
So the weather was ideal for picking peaches, cool and overcast. Nolan brought his trusty fire truck with him.
What was so cool about this place, aside from the tractor ride to the trees, was that the trees were loaded with peaches, and many could be reached from Nolan's height.
He loved having the row to himself and did lots of running.
Then he discovered that the leaves of the tree are ticklish. So we did a bit of tree tickling.
This was a really awesome family-day-out. It didn't take too long, it wasn't too hot, Nolan was well behaved and we got some shopping done. We headed back to the barn for some donuts and then headed to a nearby farm to see chickens and piggies.