My family came to visit us last week!
My dad, my 13 year old little sister, my stepmom, and my 4 month old nephew decided to come up to spend a few days in Kentucky this past week. I only get to see them once or twice a year (it's hard to get off work to get down to Texas as often as I'd like to), so I was MEGA excited that they were coming! I LOVE my family and I LOVE visitors!
They got here Wednesday night and they were worn out from the driving. It had taken them longer to get here since they decided to bring their new camper with them. (The camper = amazing, believe me!) So, we decided to lay low on Thursday. We had a little lunch, grabbed some ice cream at the Dairy Dip, and us girls went and got pedicures. Thursday night we all went to Pioneer Playhouse to watch a play. It was a good show. :)
They had been wanting to go visit the new Ark in Northern Kentucky, so Jonathan took off Friday so we could all go together. It was HUGE.
If you are interested in going, you definitely should. Being a Christian, I've heard the story of Noah and the Ark my entire life. It was awesome to get an idea of just how large it was and how it may have worked. Obviously, we were not there so we will never know the exact details... but seeing it helped bring the story to life. I will say, beware of all the walking and the reading. Over the course of three floors, there are a LOT of signs to read. There are a few movies and interactive displays, but not many. It would be a wonderful experience to share with children, but I wouldn't be surprised if they got bored quickly. There isn't a lot for kids, especially toddlers.. so beware of that fact. Otherwise, it's AWESOME!
It's not completely finished, but it's coming along great. There is a restaurant and a small zoo outside the ark. You can ride camels or donkeys for an additional fee. The zoo has kangaroos, zebras, yaks, and a few other animals in it. The petting zoo mainly had goats, but there was a miniature pony and a donkey in there as well. We really enjoyed the experience, but there are a few changes that they could make to it that would definitely make it better for everyone.
My family had also really been wanting to go to Gatlinburg, so that's exactly what we did on Saturday! Once we got to Pigeon Forge and got the camper set up, we rode down to the Gatlinburg strip to eat dinner and do a little shopping. Sunday, we all got up and went to Dollywood! It was a steamy day, but the water rides helped cool us off. We watched a couple of awesome shows and rode some fun rides, but I was super sad that it was our last day with my family (Jonathan had to work on Monday so we had to come back home, but my Dad was not leaving Gatlinburg until later in the week - actually, I think they left today lol). If we had thought to drive two cars, I definitely would of stayed. When we got back to the camper, we planned to leave but my dad stalled us a little (I was glad!) and made us eat hot dogs and smores with them. I didn't complain, even though it did make it hard to drive home. :)
I miss them already and I wish they could just stay longer. I had such a good time spending time with them!