We headed south to Columbus Ohio for a vacation, to enjoy their wonderfull zoo. It was an adventure just the drive there and back due to the fact that we had my parents, my 3 boys, my 13 year old niece and myself all packed into my van for 4 hours each way. Not real sure where we were going to stay when we go there, after looking into many hotels and all of them being booked. We figured just to head down there and hopefully we'd find something. Although we didn't have a room for the night our first stop was the water park. Some of the slides were pretty intense looking. Thankfully Papa isn't as big of a scaredy-cat as I am and took the kids on every slide they desired. Joey was a dare devil and went on most of the same rides as the older two did. Jacob is more cautious and liked the lazy river the best. I had the misfortune to step on a bee after going down only 2 slides and spent most of the time hobbling around with ice on my foot and getting pictures of everyone having fun. One of my favorites was the wave pool (I could do that one with a swollen foot), the kids had so much fun in there. We'd start back by the 5 foot mark and let the waves push us into shallower waters.
After hours of playing in the water we started our hunt for a hotel with a vacancy. Turns out there was a car show that weekend. We got the last two rooms at a Red Roof Inn. Thankful for not having to sleep in the van, but unfortunately for us they were smoking rooms and 4 rooms apart. I'm the only smoker and I don't smoke indoors. Jordan is highly allergic to cigarette smoke and even extreme 3rd hand smoke can lead to him having an attack. We put Papa and the boys in the room that was less smelly and us girls took the other room. This was Jacob first stay in a hotel and Joey's first one he'll be able to remember (he was 2 months old the last time we went to a hotel), they were both very excited to be there even if it was super stinky.
We woke early and tackled the huge Columbus Zoo, it's at least twice the size of our zoo we visit near home. We were so close to the animals and they were very active and entertaining. We walk both sides of the zoo and were allowed to touch some of the sea creatures like a starfish. We walked 6 miles easily that day (even me on my foot that had just about doubled in size). After the zoo we stopped by Stingray Bay and pet the stingrays, that was really cool. After getting over the fact that they wouldn't actually sting us I was as into it as the kids. We just had to watch out for the shark they had in there, we were told he may actually bite. The boys thought it was funny to keep telling me the shark was there (when it wasn't) to watch me quickly yank my arm out of the water with a yelp.
After driving the almost 4 hours back to my parents house, the boys and I crashed there instead driving the extra 40 minutes home. The following day we were headed back south to Monroe, MI to the River Raisin Battlefield. We had chosen this date for a reason, after some research I learned they were going to be firing cannons and muskets. For such a little museum it was really neat. We learned a lot of information about the Battle of 1812 and the weapons they used. There were 1812 style costumes for the kids to try on.