Vacation final!

As promised, the last installment of our Myrtle Beach vacation! We ventured away from the beach one day and went to check out one of the many shopping centers/entertainment places. We picked Broadway on the Beach. We really didn’t want to do much shopping so we went to a little tiny amusement park called Pavilion Nostalgia Park. You could really feel the heat when you are away from the nice ocean breeze so it was HOT!
Sienna really liked this ride because it whipped around the bend. She went on it at least 2 times.
She claims to have enjoyed the ride although her face doesn’t really tell it.
She rode several other rides as well as this train ride but I will spare you!
Yves being silly
Feeding the fish and boy the fish were hungry! See:
Did I mention that it was hot? So someone got grumpy!
I’m sure she is smiling under there!
The sun wore us out so we ordered delivery! It wasn’t bad!
The next morning we DID NOT GO TO WAFFLE HOUSE! Gasp! HA! You can’t find banana walnut pancakes at Waffle House!
Fried Green Tomatoes at Mr. Fish. We came here twice because the food was very delicious!
Shrimp Po Boy
I guess Sienna is really hungry!
Outside our hotel, there was a cute little area with tables and swinging chairs.
We checked out a playground a few blocks away.
Checking out another area of Myrtle Beach, by a pier.
Back to Mr. Fish on our last night. Soft Shell Crab and fish and chips.

Vacation, part2-part1

The long waited part 2 of vacation is finally up! I realized I do have a lot of photos from Myrtle Beach so part 2 will be divided into 2 parts. I promise not to wait as long to do part 2 of part 2 as I did to post part 2! 🙂
Our Room at Camelot by the Sea. We stayed in a 1 bedroom. Top left shows the bedroom with the front door. Top right shows the kitchen which leads into the living room (bathroom is opposite the frig). Bottom left is the living area with balcony. Bottom right is the couch in the living area.
The lazy river! Our first time experiencing a lazy river. This was the first and last time we tried it. I thought it was fun although I was giggling the whole time I was floating around it. I guess because I don’t know how to swim and I’m not familiar with that floating feeling is what was making me giggle. The water was pretty warm. I think Sienna rather be in the water than floating on it.
Pool! There was the lazy river and 2 pools and 2 jacuzzis (one of each partially inside and one of each fully outside), and a wading pool with a water sprinkler. This was the inside pool. I don’t have any action shots of us enjoying the jacuzzi because I was mostly in the jacuzzi enjoying it!
Here are views of the outside pools from our balcony. The blue awning was over the bar.
Beach time! A self portrait. LOL
View of the hotel from the beach
Food! A sampling of some of the food we ate.
Waffle from Waffle House. This is Yves’ waffle. I don’t put butter on mine. Actually, I don’t usually get a waffle at waffle house! HA! We only went 2 times.
Our thai dinner after our first full day.
Our 2nd time at the River Cafe. We came here the first night we got there. Sienna really liked this place because you can throw the peanut shells on the floor and she got doritos with her hot dog.

After a full day of fun, this is what we found on the sofa:

Vacation, part 1

I’m going to separate our vacation to Myrtle Beach into 3 parts. Part 1 will be the drive down, part 2 will be the actual Myrtle Beach vacation and part 3 will be the drive home. So here is part 1!

And we are off!

Yves’ plan was to leave at 8 am on Saturday and we actually left on time!!! Since the drive to Myrtle Beach is supposed to take 12 hours (and that’s without stops), we were going to stop somewhere past the 6 hour mark and stay in a hotel. I sat in the back with Sienna since this was going to be such a long trip. Things went pretty smoothly. We stopped at a rest stop after 2 hours and then for lunch after about 4 hours. We somehow ended up at Frank’s Diner in Jessup, MD. Pretty unassuming place and kinda happy we didn’t end up at a chain (we took care of that on the way home! LOL). It’s an old diner that smelled like old people when you walked in and even had mini jukeboxes at each table! There were only a few tables occupied but like 6 waitresses. Sienna got a grilled cheese and both me and Yves got patty melts with different bread and cheeses. Something must have happened in the kitchen because our food took awhile to come out. The waitress apologized to us and even when Sienna and Yves’ dish came out, mine took another 5 minutes to come out. I do have to say, tho, that it was pretty good!

With the help of our ipad2, we found a Hampton Inn in Colonial Heights, VA to stay in. Although it was not really super necessary to use the ipad to find a hotel, it sure helped us find one with free wifi (which most hotels offer), LCD tvs (which not every hotel offers), indoor pool and vacancies without getting out of the car! Come on, that’s cool, right? We almost picked a hotel with the tube tvs, which would not have worked with the apple tv we brought along, so quickly found one with the LCD. It ended up not working anyway because their wifi was not so high speed. We relaxed a bit in the pool and jacuzzi (woohoo!) before having dinner at Ruby Tuesdays. Yes, a chain but unfortunately, I did not have the energy to try and find a local place. Surprisingly, the food was pretty tasty! We even got dessert! They had one of 4 mini cupcakes (2 red velvet and 2 carrot cake), which was perfect for us!

The next morning we ate the breakfast the hotel offered and off we went! Sienna decided to take over my camera and wanted to take photos too, just like mommy and daddy! Here are her feet:
Find her set of photos on my flickr page here.

We had a planned stop at South of the Border, a place I really wanted to check out! We were going to even eat lunch there but after some investigating, decided we would rather stop somewhere before that to eat (reviews were pretty bad for the restaurants). I used my ipad to find a restaurant and found rave reviews at the restaurant we ended up at. Well, what a disappointment! It wasn’t horrible but wasn’t all that. I can’t even remember the name or where it was!

Anyway, we made it!
It was a pretty hot day so we didn’t stay that long here. If it wasn’t for Sienna, me and Yves probably could have spent a couple of hours walking around the place taking photos! But that’s ok, we got some nice photos.
and some ice cream!
(You can see more in my flickr set!)

Here’s another Shot by Sienna photo that I would like to end this post with. After South of the Border when we were back in the car. Cracks me up!

Please Touch

As mentioned in earlier posts, we went to the Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia a few weekends ago. We decided to make a weekend out of it and booked a room at Crowne Plaza Hotel, chosen because of the indoor pool (which ended up being close for renovations! GRRRR!) Anyhow, lots of photos were taken so I’ll keep the words short. Pete joined us for the trip and it was great fun to have him with us. The museum totally rocked, the building majestic and I would definitely recommend this place and want to go back!

On to the photos!
Pete was a good crayon assistant to Sienna in the back seat
The sign outside
The beautiful ceiling (I can’t believe I didn’t take a photo of the building, which is beautiful)
They had a few of these cutout head bodies. Lots of fun!
Water Area
These clouds and rainbow were above the water area, I loved them!
This cracks me up!
They have an awesome Alice in Wonderland area!
We played with blocks for a little bit and Sienna enjoyed knocking down all our blocks.
These were taken downstairs in the “city” area. I don’t remember why they had a vespa there. Sienna found this dog in the house area and played with it what felt like forever! This was also the area where Pete’s video was taken of the shopping. There was also a hospital but we did not go in there.
There was also a section of old stuff and I really thought the typewriter was cool!
They also had a display of retro toys (not in the same area as the old stuff). I had to take a photo of this because we had one when I was younger.
Waiting in line to shoot a “rocket”
Shooting the rocket!

There really are so many photos I am not posting. I ran into some old friends at the museum (small world!), me and Sienna rode the carousel, Sienna ate a hot dog for lunch and we went to Dalessandros (recommended by a friend) for cheesesteaks! MMM!

And of course, I have to show Sienna wearing the 4 shirt I made for her for her birthday (which she did not want to wear on her actual birthday but the day after!)

The Big E on film!


CSA farm

Our CSA is over in November and I haven’t really written about it. It started in June and I was a little overwhelmed in the beginning. I got better at it but there were still a few things that ended up in the garbage because I waited too long to use it or didn’t know what to do with it. Some pluses are that we discovered a like for swiss chard, mustard greens and leafy greens of that nature (and that they taste extra delicious when you saute them with turkey bacon!) Also Yves also discovered that he likes pesto!

We also got a fruit share and got some really yummy peaches, apples and pears. There was some fruit that was a letdown such as the watermelon. It wasn’t very sweet and it had seeds (I got spoiled eating the seedless!) But that’s from a different farm.

Anyhow, we were invited to visit the farm at the end of September. It took a little over 2 hours to get there, it was up by Warwick, NY. We got brunch with fresh squeezed orange juice (totally wasted on Sienna because she doesn’t like the pulp.) The french toast was a little disappointing as the crust of the bread was really hard. The omelet was better but I could have eaten 3 of them and the potatoes were cold. 🙁 The “tour” consisted of a girl telling us the history of the farm and allowing us to pick some stuff. Sienna and I picked a couple of edible flowers and I tried to find some basil but the season was pretty much over for that.

We were disappointed with the trip but at the same time, it was interesting to see the farm where our vegetables come from.
Cool city girl waiting for her country breakfast

Florida: The Rest

The Pool! We all really enjoyed the pool, especially Sienna. She was so confident with her floaties, going in the deep end and everything. Whenever the noodles were available, I snatched it to use and Sienna even used it once.

The Eats! The most stressful part of the vacation was figuring out where to eat. There were lots of options and part of the problem was reading all the reviews online. Every place had both bad and good comments so it was still hard to make a choice. The hotel gave coupons for a few restaurants like Beach Bun and Burgers and we actually went twice. The first time was better than the 2nd but the cook was different so I think that made a difference. There was also Blue Fugu Japanese Steakhouse. I thought it would be fun for Sienna to see the chef cook food in front of her. She really wasn’t that amazed. The food was good but like all Japanese Steakhouses, pricey. We probably wouldn’t have gone if we didn’t have a coupon. Plus we met a woman who recommended Buono Pizza for Italian, which we ended up going to when we saw the Thai place we originally planned to go was too expensive. It was really good! We both got sandwiches (not pizza) and they were huge. Of course there was the Waffle House, an Yves favorite. We went there almost every morning for breakfast. The last standout is a Thai restaurant we went to the very last night and if we discovered it sooner, probably would have went back. Nori Thai which also has sushi. The food was very good. The one place we went to that was a real disappointment to me was a seafood restaurant called Friendly Fisherman. I was bugging Yves to go to a seafood restaurant and we didn’t go to the one I really wanted to and went to this one out of convenience, well, we paid for it. The food was tasteless. There was also Bella Habana, a Cuban restaurant that everytime we passed, I told Yves we should go there. Finally got him to go and he LOVED his dish (fried cow) while I thought my ropa viejo was just ok. At least Sienna loved the chorizo.

Most lunches were mainly in our room.

We only ventured away from the pool and beach a couple of times. One time to check out the Pier, which was disappointing because it really wasn’t much and it’s “aquarium.” I use the quotes because I feel aquarium is used loosely. It was basically a big room with tanks in it. Literally took 15 minutes to walk around and only because we slowly looked at things. At least we ran into a pelican. One afternoon we went to a playground across the street. Bad move. That lasted 5 minutes! It was too hot and no shade. We went back to the pool. HA!


The hotel had a parrot named Houdini and Sienna went to say hello to him every chance she got, which was several times a day!

And somehow Sienna managed to get Yves to buy her a Minnie Mouse doll at Wal-mart.

St. Pete Beach!

Yes, I am finally getting to the Florida beach vacation photos. It’s been 2 weeks since we got back and I miss the pool! We stayed at the Plaza Beach Resort. We were looking for a place that was cozy and not so commercial feeling. This place was it. It is family owned, 2 levels and very laid back. We got a suite, which basically had a little kitchen, living room and bedroom. Now that Sienna is older, we can’t all stay in the same room anymore. She used to be able to fall asleep while we watched tv quietly (like at the Jersey Shore 2 years ago) but we learned last year at Sesame Place that it wasn’t working anymore and who wants to go to bed at 8-8:30?

I didn’t take that many photos (I did bring my holga and 5 rolls of film, which went unused because I FORGOT the extra roll needed to spool the film! ARGH!) since it was a relaxing vacation. Our routine was pretty much breakfast at the Waffle House, beach, lunch in the room (cold cuts), nap for Sienna, pool and dinner. And I was pretty happy with that arrangement. The most stress was figuring out a place to eat. I will say that 75 percent of our choices were good ones. We were really close to Busch Gardens but opted not to go. Sienna is still too young to warrant paying the admission price for that place.

Anyway, this post will be all beach photos! The first few days the water was really nice and calm. And there were a couple of rough water days but Sienna and Yves really enjoyed those too.

The resort had a box of beach stuff you can use so some of the stuff was not exactly in the best working conditions. Like the umbrella.
This was like the fourth shot I tried to take so that is why Sienna was making that face!

PA Vacay Part2

playgroundblog.jpgSo Tuesday afternoon we headed over to Lancaster. It should have taken 1.5 hours but I was a bad navigator and steered us the wrong way (google maps can be a little confusing). Since we made it in 2 hours, the misstep was not too bad. We stayed at the Fulton Steamboat Inn. It was very cute! They had a playground and a duck pond right in front and Sienna was perfectly content with playing in the playground. At this hotel they gave us an air mattress as their rollaway and when we saw that, we were both like DOH! Why didn’t we think of that? We have 2 at home! It worked out perfect until Yves realized it was deflating during the night. So she ended up sleeping in the other Queen bed in the room. We left the air mattress on the side of her bed in case she fell out (which she did on the last night although we are still not sure it wasn’t on purpose.)


We ended up at a Thai restuarant for dinner because I refused to go to Olive Garden or Ruby Tuesdays. I did not want to eat at chain restaurants that we can go to at home! It ended up being really good. Sienna was used to getting crayons at all the restaurants we’ve been to so when the hostess didn’t give her any, she looked a bit confused and told her, ‘crayons!’ Sienna actually ate her dish of chicken satay. We took a dip in the pool and jacuzzi later that evening.

Yeah I know, I didn’t get waffles but this was the best bacon, egg and cheese on a biscuit I have ever had!
Yves’ waffle
Sienna waiting for some waffle

Wednesday after a delicious breakfast at the Waffle House (I don’t despise all chains!),  we headed out to the Amish Village. Yves was very interested in learning about the Amish people and since I hadn’t been to Lancaster since probably college, I didn’t mind learning about it either. It started out with a tour of a typical house they would live in. Sienna was very good. After the tour, we got to roam around and we saw horses, chickens, rabbits and turkey lurkey! We learned a lot! Then I was really interested in taking an Authentic buggy ride. There were actually quite a few places advertised for that so I picked the place I had a coupon for, Aaron and Jessica’s. I was a little disappointed to see wagons but they did have a few buggys that we had to wait for about 30-40 minutes for! We ended up riding with one other family. It was cute although not what I thought it would be. We basically went around a block. A large country block.
At the Amish Village
Aaron was our buggy driver

After about 5 minutes, Sienna was ready to get off the ride. LOL. It’s a good thing it was just around the block! We were going to head to lunch but then realized Sienna was super tired, it was 1:30 so we headed back to the hotel and she slept for almost 3 hours! We had an early dinner at the Family Cupboard (recommended by Aaron the buggy driver). We ordered off the menu instead of getting the buffet and it wasn’t bad. At least I got some PA dutch food. We went back in to the pool and jacuzzi later that evening.

There was some debate about whether we were going to stay Thursday night. I forgot that I had booked 3 nights in Lancaster and didn’t realize it until we got there. All along I thought it was just 2 nights and we were going to head home Thursday after some sight seeing. We decided to stay. So Thursday after another delicious breakfast at the Waffle House, we headed to downtown Lancaster. There was some advertising that made it seem like a quant little area but my main reason was to go to the Fractured Prune. Well, we didn’t get to explore very much as street parking was hard to find. The meters cost 25 cents for 12 minutes!! So I suggested getting some donuts for later and heading to the Strasburg Railroad, which I had wanted to do but they didn’t open until 11 so it worked out anyway. We took the 11 am train ride. I don’t know if we are just jaded New Yorkers but I was a tad disappointed in the ride. It boasts a 45 minute train ride through the Lancaster country side. Basically, it was 20 minutes 1 way, 5 minutes to move the engine to the other side, and then going back 20 minutes. So it was just a straight line. I always like trains and railroads so that kinda sucked.
The Lancaster countryside
We got the open air breezy car, which was exactly that so that was nice!
Sienna was more excited to ride this 50 cent train.

For dinner on the last night, we went to Cracker Barrel.  I don’t know why but I have this soft spot for Cracker Barrel. I think I’ve only been there about 3 or 4 times in my life but whenever I pass one or see a sign for one, I always get excited. Sienna actually ate the mac and cheese we got for her and my BBQ pork was pretty good. Yves got a chef salad as he was beginning to feel the weight of the vacation eating!

We left Friday morning at around 10, after a delicious breakfast at the Waffle House (again!) and made it home in under 3 hours with a quick rest stop. I know it may sound like I didn’t have a good time but I did and I’m glad we went. I wonder if Sienna will remember this trip?

PA Vacay Part1

So the first part of our trip was Sesame Place. As I mentioned in the previous post, I was sick! I felt something in my throat during the drive down but didn’t think anything of it. It didn’t dawn on me until later that night that I was getting sick. GRRRR. We grundingly went to Chili’s for dinner as the choices for dining were limited to chain restaurants. The service was very slow and then food was just ok. The next morning we went to IHOP for breakfast and a quick stop to Walmart for cold meds and some misc. things we forgot. Since the park opened at 10, we weren’t concerned and we got there about 10 after. There was a big line! Several other families had the same idea of getting there at opening and there were a backlog of people waiting to get in. That was annoying and we must have waited about 20 minutes (although it felt longer.)

I went on the Merry Go Round ride first with Sienna. Then Yves rode the airplane ride. Those went well but then there were a couple of things she did not enjoy. This net climbing thing and this bouncy thing (I think only because she wanted us to bounce with her but we weren’t allowed or maybe because she saw Elmo and wanted to go see him.) Lunch wasn’t very memorable and Yves thought we should leave after lunch so Sienna could get her nap in. I was hoping to get more activities in to get our money’s worth but because I was also lacking in energy from being sick, I succumbed.
Sienna helps Yves push our crap into the Marriot hotel
We were concerned about where Sienna was going to sleep on this trip but the pull out couch worked out. Until the 2nd night when her diaper leaked all over her pj’s and she ended up in the king bed with us. It actually worked out ok even though she was edging us both out!
We made it!
It was hard to get a good shot of them on the ride!
Sienna did not like this thing.
Or this!
The 2nd day went well. The line to get in didn’t seem as overwhelming. Since I was sick I had to bow out of the water rides so Yves went on this water tube ride with Sienna. She loved it! But then she was shivering for a bit afterwards. It was warm but a bit breezy.So we ended up not going on anymore water rides. It just didn’t work out. Me and Sienna did go on this up and down ride that was really fun! Yves was hesitant and wasn’t sure if she would like it but she loved it! She wanted to go see Elmo again so we went back to the photo area. It was Abby and Elmo again like the day before yet she was still just as excited to see them as she was the day before. We also got to see an Elmo World Live show, which she enjoyed. We left around 2 to head to Lancaster and Sienna fell asleep on the way over.

Looking for Elmo!
Driving a fire truck on Sesame Street
At the Elmo’s World Live show.

Reading over what I just wrote, it sounds like I am complaining a lot and didn’t have a good time. Besides being sick, I did enjoy myself but I’m mostly happy that Sienna enjoyed herself. I feel she is still a tad bit young for the park and when we go back next summer, it will be a lot more fun. But I am glad we went!

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Water Tube Ride from Lisa on Vimeo.

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