Archive for the ‘Vacation 2010 Indiana’ Category

Home Sweet Home

Sunday, July 4th, 2010

We slept in really late this morning, and basically didn’t leave until about lunch time. That didn’t really give us much of an opportunity to stop anywhere unusual on the way home. But, the timing worked out perfect that we got to G-Ma and G-Pa’s house right at dinner time. Which was great, because with it being the 4th of July, Sherri, Dereck, Chase, and Nana (Lori) were all there for burgers and dogs, too.

We got home safely, and attempted to get Domino to bed around 9PM. She didn’t get to sleep until 10:30pm. And Carolena wouldn’t settle down until around 11:30pm. It’s going to be very tough getting back on schedule.

Go Phillies!

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

Today we slept in, and then went out for lunch at Burgh’s Pizza and Wings. While the food was fine, the service was painfully slow. It took us about 1hr 40 minutes for lunch. That’s pathetic. And it wasn’t even busy, and we didn’t order anything complicated.

After lunch, we took a quick stop at a local park so the kids could play on the playground, but it was very hot, so we didn’t stay long.

This evening, we went to the Phillies vs Pirates baseball game. We bought the tickets on Stub Hub because there was Standing Room Only available at the box office. Our seats were about 2/3rd of the way from 1st bast to the foul pole, 13 rows from the field. Very nice seats. Normally priced $26 before surcharges, we paid almost $50 after surcharges. I’m not sure, but I think the same seats at a Phillies home game would have been about the same price ($45 before surcharges). The Phillies had lost the first two games of the series. Both games were very low scoring. Tonight was a different story. The Phillies started scoring right off the bat, and won 12-4!! I would say there were more Phillies fans in the audience than Pirates fans. After the game, there was a pretty decent fireworks show, too.

Tonight is our last night of our vacation. Tomorrow we head back home. Back to the cat that pees where it shouldn’t, the refrigerator that runs too cold and has a broken water line to the ice maker, the broken faucet on the kitchen sink, the leaky drain on the kitchen sink, the messy basement that still isn’t finished, the broken window on the car, and all kinds of other things that are on my long list of things to do. I can’t wait to get home. [sarcasm]

Drive Back to Pittsburgh

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

Well, we left much later than we wanted to this morning, and we made more stops than I wanted to, too. But we did manage to make it to Imagination Station in Toledo in time to be able to stick around for a couple of entertaining hours. While there, we got to see a Science Show where they blew things up. The coolest thing was when they had a member of the audience wet their hands in dish soap. Then they took some kind of gas balloon with a hose on the end of it, put the hose in the soapy water, and made soap bubbles. Then the helper picked up some bubbles and put them on her hand. When they put a flame to it, it made an extremely loud bang. And I mean extremely loud. Very cool.

We went from Toledo directly to Pittsburgh, where we met up with an old high school friend of mine, Kevin, at his house for a BBQ dinner. I haven’t seen Kevin for about 12 years, and recently Facebook Friended him. Kevin has a wonderful family with a wife (Amy), a son (Nate), and two girls (Abby and Zoe). We had a very nice dinner, drank some very tasty beer, and caught up with what keeps us busy. I think both of us have matured quite a bit since we last saw each other. The kids all stayed up way past their bedtimes, and had a lot of fun together. I’m very happy for Kevin, and I hope we are able to get together again.

We’re back in Bridgeville, now, spending the night at Doug’s.

We had planned on going to Kennywood tomorrow, but after this long week, I don’t know that we have the energy to do something that drastic. Marie noticed that the Phillies are playing the Pirates this weekend, so I looked for tickets. Standing room only at the stadium, but plenty available on Stub Hub. Of course, tickets are twice the actual price there, but Marie thinks it’s worth it. I picked up 4 tickets at just under $50 a piece for tomorrow night’s game. Seats look really good – baseline box 4, which is just into foul territory in right field, right up front. Normal price for those seats is half that, but at least it includes fireworks. Phillies lost the first two games of the series, so hopefully they don’t get swept.

At the Zoo

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Today was our last full day here in Indiana, and we spent it at the Potawatomi Zoo. This zoo was very nice, and had plenty of animals to see. There was even a little train ride that you could take. As usual, the tiger and snow leopard loved Showbo – they would eye her up, pace back and forth, and occasionally put their paws up on the window. Unfortunately, the lions were sleeping and didn’t wake up to see her.

After the zoo, I took the kids to the playground while Marie got some well needed sleep. We tried to go to a place called Kid’s Kingdom, which is a big playground made all of wood, but a recent storm apparently messed it up, so we went to another playground in a nearby park. Plenty to do there, and lots of other kids were having a good time. Carolena was quite the daredevil.

This evening, we stayed in and played bingo at the resort. They didn’t charge to play, and if you won, you got to pick something from the snack bar. At the end, somebody asked if those who didn’t win could have a consolation prize. The lady running the event said “sure”, so everybody who showed up ended up winning something.

We started packing for tomorrow. We hope to leave early so we can spend a decent amount of time at Imagination Station on the way back to Pittsburgh.

Amish Acres

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Today we spent the day at Amish Acres. It’s an Amish farm in Nappanee, Indiana. While there, we went on a wagon tour, had a very good Amish lunch at Thrasher’s, saw a wonderful play called Pain & Fancy – which was a nice story about the Amish in Bird in Hand, Pennsylvania – saw a documentary about the history of the Amish, and went on a walking tour of the property. It was a very long day. Domino did great during the play. Carolena didn’t do too bad, either. But after the play, Carolena started to be a handful. And at the end of the walking tour, Domino let us know how tired she was. When we got home, Domino didn’t feel well, and went straight to bed without eating any dinner. I’m a bit worried about her. Hopefully a long nights rest will help her feel good for tomorrow.

Irished Out

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

Today we successfully made it to Notre Dame for the campus tour. What a beautiful campus. Our tour guide says that tuition is $40k a year, plus about another $10k for room and board. But his mom works at Notre Dame, so he only has to pay for room and board. Must be nice. (He said he did need to earn his way into the university, and that it is a very tough school to be accepted into.)

This evening, we ate dinner at a restaurant called Fiddler’s Hearth. I wanted to go there because they had live music – not that I’m a fan of Keltic music, but better than nothing. The music ended up being quite nice. Unfortunately, Carolena was extremely difficult. I think this ranks in the top 3 worst dinner experiences with kids. Carolena was screaming and crying, and I couldn’t figure out what she wanted. It was a mess. At least Domino was good. I thought the food was fine, but the girls barely touched their Shepard’s Pie.

South Bend Chocolate Company

Monday, June 28th, 2010

We went to the South Bend Chocolate Company today. Compared to Hershey, it’s a tiny little thing, but man do to they make some good chocolates. They don’t do bars – they dip this that and everything else. The tour was very nice. We got there for the right tour, too. The one after us was a large group of kids. Our tour was only three small families. You have a choice of doing the free tour, or paying about $4 per person for a little bit more. The extra money is well worth the price, as they give you a free goodie bag of candy, as well as you being able to make your own chocolate dipped spoon. We had a really enjoyable time there.

After the tour, we headed to Notre Dame. We grabbed a quick, very tasty lunch at Legends, and then headed to the campus tour. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the Visitor’s Center, and by the time we got there, the tour had already left. So, I decided that we would try to come back tomorrow for the tour.

That actually worked out pretty well, as I had planned on grilling dinner tonight, and I needed time to put that together. While I prepared the corn on the cob and marinade the boneless chicken, Marie took a nap and the kids watched Cake Wars. When Marie woke, she and the kids went to the pool while I fired up the grill. Dinner came out great.

Oh, I did manage to make it back to the supermarket for a 12-pack of Dundee’s Craft Pack: 3 each of Kolsch-Style Ale, Stout, India Pale Ale, and Pale Bock Lager. I enjoyed the Koslch-Style Ale during grilling, and the IPA with dinner. Both were very tasty.

Varsity Club of America – South Bend Chapter

Sunday, June 27th, 2010

We arrived at the Varsity Club of America – South Bend Chapter las night. The room is very nice. It doesn’t have a full kitchen, but it has everything we need. Pull-out couch for the girls, and a nice king-size bed for Marie and I. At the resort, there is an indoor swimming pool situated in a room that has a removable roof when the weather is nice. In the courtyard, there is a bocce court and a putting green. The hotel is decked out with sports stuff. College pictures and flags line every wall in every hallway, many autographed.

Here in Mishawaka, we are right in the middle of a big shopping area with almost every popular store within 2 miles. Along with that is nearly every popular restaurant, too. We won’t be starving – that’s for sure.

We all slept in this morning, and when we finally got ready to go, Marie decided to sleep some more while I took the girls out for lunch and to pick up some groceries. We went to CiCi’s Pizza – a very inexpensive pizza and pasta buffet. Pretty awesome for the price – really bad for my diet. I will really need to get back to diet and exercise after this week.

At the supermarket, I was pleasantly surprised to find alcohol (not legal in PA). I tried to pick up a variety pack of some beer I never heard of, but in the checkout line, I was told that you can’t buy alcohol on Sundays in Indiana. I guess I’ll need to come back.

I tried to find more live entertainment today, but apparently every place that has live music also allows smoking, so no kids are allowed. I guess if I want to see any live music, I’ll have to wait until the kids go to sleep.

We basically just hung out at the resort today. Didn’t do any swimming or anything. Just lounged around. And then the family went out to Houlihan’s for a decent dinner. Afterwards, we attended “movie night” at the timeshare, where they appropriately showed the movie “Rudy”, which is about a kid who’s dream is to play football for Notre Dame. Carlena and Domino were a handful, and used up a ton of energy jumping from couch to couch and running around. The kids should sleep well tonight.

Imagination Station

Saturday, June 26th, 2010