I’ve shown you where we were, now see what we did… I’m going to warn you now – This one is image heavy.
One of our mandatory stops on family vacation is Ripley’s Aquarium in Myrtle Beach, SC. It’s only a little over an hour south of Oak Island, so it makes for a great half-day trip. Addison
loves it. Maybe I do too, just a little. The horseshoe crabs freak me out a little, but not her. We decided to go ahead and head down on Sunday and get most of our driving out of the way early in the week.
My favorite part of Ripley’s is Dangerous Reef. It’s like being in a hamster tube inside an aquarium. Where else can you safely check out the dental work on one of nature’s great predators?
Cullen was a little freaked out about it all and clung desperately to someone the entire trip. Pawpaw Ronnie (my step-dad) had the honor of being Cullen’s clinging choice for Dangerous Reef.
There were several opportunities for the kids to get an inside look at the action, quite literally. Addison was in awe of the puffer fish.
This little guy was just too pretty not to share. He reminds me of the Cichilds
I killed we lost earlier this year.
Captain Klingon and Mr. Mama. The boy has a death grip with his legs. The reason…
… A giant replica of the inner workings of a Great White. They are really quite amazing. Their jaws are not attached to their skulls and it gives them the ability to literally push their jaws forward to grab prey.
On a less deadly note, Ripley’s also has a great touch tank for rays called Ray Bay. Don’t worry, they remove the barbs.
That’s my mom and Addison waiting on two approaching rays. I could lay there and pet them all day. When I touch them, I’m reminded of a Portobello mushroom. Strange? Maybe.
Ripley’s also has a Mermaid diving show they are promoting this summer. The show was way to crowded (we tried to cram it, but it just wasn’t happening) but were delighted to find out that after the show, the mermaids come up to Ray Bay for a Meet and Greet. Addison lit up in a way I can’t describe when she got to talk to a real mermaid! <3 I love my girl and her imagination. I hope she never loses it.
*BTW – This post is in no way endorsed by Ripley’s. They have no idea who I am. Ripley’s is truly just a fantastic part of our family vacation every year.
Monday was a beach day. We spent the day playing in the sand, trying to get Cullen in the water and watching Addison learn to Boogie Board. You can read about the Boogie Board experience here.
Why did we have such a hard time getting the boy in the water, you ask? That question can be easily explained with a little video…
Thud. LOL He was clearly traumatized. That was Saturday evening and we couldn’t get him to touch the water, in any fashion, without screaming until Tuesday.
He was much happier on dry land. The front deck was perfect for that. It had a gate so we could all relax without anyone playing ‘stair supervisor’.
Tuesday we split the day between the beach and experiencing an earth quake. Yes, you read that right. We felt the VA earthquake all the way down on the NC coast. It was a little crazy.
Wednesday we was our trip to Kure Beach. I really love riding the ferry. Cullen and his daddy tolerate my enjoyment of the ferry. Neither find it extremely impressive. I’m not sure why I do. Maybe it something about driving my car onto a boat. Dunno.
If birds freak you out, the back of the boat is not the place for you. The gulls flock to the ferry like nobody’s business. It’s clearly because people like us feed them.
Look at their beaty little eyes. I’m having flashbacks.
Mama! They’re watching me!
Being on a boat clearly suits my daughter.
They think those nets can hold my children. Ha!
And just in case…
One of the cool things we were lucky enough to see where a few sea turtle nests that hadn’t hatched. I’m just hoping they all survived Hurricane Irene.
We spent a little more time on the beach Thursday and found out at 6:30 PM we’d have to be out Friday morning at 10 AM due to a mandatory evacuation courtesy of Irene. An earthquake and a hurricane all in one week. Craziness!
Vacation 2011 goes down as a success, despite Mother Nature’s attempts to thwart it.