1. Pool Adventures:

Ali got another poolside lunch. And, since she’s such a slow eater, she had plenty of time to get dry..


And then, a mysterious and quite gushing amount of liquid dripped down under her chair (to join the abandoned fry):IMG_2065 …which reminds me…swim diapers ONLY hold in solids.

Lovely thought, huh?

Chris put Ali to work pulling him around the baby pool:


But she quickly figured out where the real meaning of the pool could be found: IMG_2055

Which makes me wonder if that swim diaper had any more overflows while she was sitting there…


2. Toenails and sand DON’T mix.

(This one’s for Mama Hen and Jill, as this is their pet peeve.)

After we came in from the sand, one of my big toe’s toenail polish was sticking straight up. I tried to tear off the bit that was loose, and the entire toenail polish came off in two big hunks:IMG_1994

so I was left in this very un-fit situation,


And of course I forgot to bring replacement nail polish. And you know, you do weird things when you’re on vacation…you let all of those inhibitions down and end up making decisions like this:


My justification: It matched my swimsuit.

Odd thing is, the same thing happened to Kitty the very same day:IMG_2001

But for some reason, she didn’t choose to join me on the blue wagon. Not sure why.

3. Pink Ice Cream

The last time Ali stayed with Mom and Dad, Dad decided that he would potty-train Ali. Since, after all, he was the one who taught her to walk.

However, just in case you’re wondering, there is precious little in common about teaching a child to walk and teaching them to use a toilet for more than a pommel horse.

But I digress. Anyway, he had told her to name one thing – anything in the world – that she wanted, and he would get it for her if she used the potty. She very quickly answered that she would want Pink Ice Cream.

She’s never had Pink Ice Cream nor had she ever mentioned it before that point, but apparently this was a lifelong dream of hers.

She didn’t achieve her goals on that trip to Mom and Dad’s, so she didn’t earn her P.I.C. However, thanks to an Ice Cream Parlor here at the hotel, we were able to mark that item off of her bucket list:IMG_2021
And, actually, it was even BETTER than Pink Ice Cream, because it was Pink, Orange, and Green Ice Cream:IMG_2022

4. Driving Lessons.

Ali woke up from her nap on Friday in the oddest ever Complete And Total Meltdown funk – VERY out of character for her. She couldn’t quite get out of it, so we decided to take her to the arcade (also in the hotel) to distract her from whatever uninvited hormones had attacked her while she was sleeping.

It worked perfectly, and she was quite the studious apprentice as I taught her how to drive at 188mph.IMG_2079

In fact, her expression never changed for the entire race:IMG_2080

She learned valuable driving lessons such as:

  • You can drive off the edge of a cliff and magically appear back on the road,
  • you can run head first into other cars and be able to keep on driving as if nothing happened,
  • and that the best way to drive is to keep your foot all the way down on the gas, while the brake pedal is just some unnecessary extra appendage like a gall bladder that’s not really useful for anything.

She’s ready to hit the roads now.

5. The New Pier

They just opened the brand new pier at the Gulf State Park (The other one was destroyed by Ivan, I’m pretty sure).

It’s a pretty long walk for people with shorter-than-average legs:


But the trek was SO worth it. We just happened to hit it right at sunset:



IMG_2115 IMG_2132

6. Dancing With the Aged

After our second night of Pink Ice Cream, we were about to head up for Ali’s bedtime when we realized that they were playing live music in the lobby. Knowing that Ali would love it, we took her up to see it. IMG_2140

We found un unobtrusive corner to stand in and let her continue her mesmerization with the piano and sax players/singers (that Simon Cowell likens every bad American Idol contestant to):


And then, all of a sudden as if they apparated from nowhere, we were surrounded by half a dozen Octogenarian Dancing couples making passes at grabbing each other’s booties:

IMG_2137Of which, of course, Ali was just as mesmerized by.

7. Lessons in What You Will Never Have.

We took Ali down to The Wharf to see all of the crazy-expensive yachts. Luckily, she was much more interested in swinging from the handrails than being Veruca Salt and demanding, “Doddy, I’D like a Yacht. And I’d like a Yacht Right Now!!”

IMG_2142 IMG_2144
8. Outlet Mall Adventures

We decided to waste some time at the Outlet Malls, of which Ali wanted to take the Great American Money Sucking Ride Tour (but, lucky for us, she hates it when they move, so no Money Sucking took place):IMG_2147


IMG_2150 IMG_2161

You don’t realize how many of those darned things they are until you’re in a indulging mood and let your kid play on all 6,573 of them.

During one of the above rides, I headed off to find the restroom. There was this crazy-long, self-promoting mural on the wall:IMG_2154

But the people were very oddly misshapen and unproportional…IMG_2152

It looked like the bodies were painted and real people were sticking their heads through the cut-outs and staring at me while in the restroom. Very awkward.

We also saw an interesting product or two. I love me some chocolate, but I’m not so sure about the ingredients to these bars:IMG_2158 IMG_2160

“Why yes, I’d like some Endangered Chimpanzee Chocolate, please. I prefer the gamey taste.”

9. Lambert’s: Home of Throwed Rolls.


10. Ferris Wheel.IMG_2167

Ali loves SEEING the Ferris Wheel, but when we told her that we were going to RIDE it, she begged, “Let’s ride it tomorrow. Not today. Can we ride the Ferris Wheel tomorrow?”

After all, tomorrow IS another day.

Unless your parents are sadistic freaks, in which case, TODAY is the day.

We thought that she might come unglued, but she did great – just very studious of our situation. VERY studious. IMG_2172

We did get her to take a break and smile,

But then it was back to her studiosity.IMG_2178
11. Revenge of the Chocolate.

I might have bemoaned my daughter’s chocolate mess-making abilities earlier in this trip.

Well, apparently, she comes by it naturally.

Remember that I bought myself chocolate on that stop also? It seems that a large chunk of my chocolate decided to take a dive into my door handle without me realizing it, and has since been baking for two days:


(It was kept company by Ali’s animal bracelets.)

AND, that also happens to be the place that I set my phone when in the car, of which by all appearances my phone’s receiver has a penchant for slurping chocolate into it’s tiny caverns:IMG_2183 So if I sound a bit fuzzy in a somewhat chocolatey way next time I’m talking to you on the phone, now you know why.

13 thoughts on “Eleven Adventures, Beach Style.

  1. I love how you document every single adventure you have, and then manage to refer back to old blog posts all in the same breath. By the time I'm at the end of your post I have forgotten what was in the beginning because I have been jumping around checking older posts out. All that to say you are an amazing blogger (and I mean that) plus being a 40 something doesn't help in remembering everything I want to comment about.

    I love all the words you come up with, too, like… see? I can't remember. :-)

    Great post, Rachel.

  2. My kids, too, took some non-money sucking rides on those things today at the outlets in Boaz, while my mom shopped at Bon Worth. I refuse to go in there, as I'm afraid it will suck what is left of my fashion sense out. Maybe I need you to come do a "Mom fashion intervention" with her…

  3. Cute pictures. I love the sunset pictures. Ali is very brave I hate the ferris wheel because I am afraid of heights, lucky for me my parents were never sadistic enough to make me go on one when I was little.

    Glad you are having a good time.

  4. My toenail polish came off in a chunk the other day. It split vertically right down the middle so I still have the right half on my big toe. Random. I love Ali's serious nature, I just can't get over it!

  5. I love all the stories of what you all did, and it gives great ideas of things to do, even for locals. It does look like you had a really great time wandering round time.

  6. Wow, those sunset pictures were gorgeous! I want to pack up my family and head to a beach somewhere!

    I discovered that swimdiapers aren't waterproof last summer when we took Kariya on a boat ride. She was sitting on my lap and had become quite dry until all of the sudden, we were both very wet! Yuck.

  7. You did a great job on the toenails! Pretty color!

    Your family always looks like they have such a good time when you go out. Ali is blessed to have two such loving parents.

    Believe me, I have had some bad experiences with the swim diapers. Yuck.

  8. Those sunset pictures are awesome, sunsets on the beach are so beautiful!
    Ali was so brave to ride on the ferris wheel, did she like it enough to want to ride a second time?
    Ali was really studying those race games, maybe she's thinking about a career in racing…your dad would love that!
    I had no idea swim diapers didn't really hold liquid…I always wondered why Luke never seemed to pee when he was swimming ;)

  9. Thanks everyone! We did have a great time, full of adventures.

    And Christen, you owe me for teaching you about Swim Diapers before it catches up with you. ;)

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