We had SUCH a great time on our quick little get-away. Our church took a trip to Pigeon Forge, TN and to Dollywood on Friday and Saturday.
On Friday, we left the house a few minutes after 9 in the morning. Gene had never been to Pigeon Forge, and I haven’t been since I was little, so we made sure we had our trusty directions with us. We took a few “detours” (like visiting Cherokee, NC – beautiful!), but we made it to our hotel in just over 3 hours.
We got to the hotel, and immediately the kids wanted to hop into the pool. We talked them into going to get some lunch and then playing some mini-golf. We had a quick bite at Taco Bell (gosh, I wish we had one of those closer to our house!), and then headed to the golf course. The course was really cool. You rode in a “train” up to the top of the mountain, then picked a course and worked your way down. The kids LOVED it. I wish I hadn’t tried to golf, though. It would have been cheaper if Gene and I just helped the kids rather than trying to hit our own golf balls as well. But, we survived all 18 holes and got a great picture at the end.
After mini-golf, we headed over to Lil’ Dolly’s. What a FABULOUS store!!! They were having a HUGE sale while we were there. (Of course they were, they must have known we were broke! LOL!) They had the cutest little dresses (not the dolly dresses – I’m so not into those), but regular little sun dresses that were perfect for Lulu. They also had quilts – by the gazillion! I am a quilt FREAK and could spend all day looking at quilts. They had some really pretty ones that were pretty reasonably priced. In fact, I was surprised at how reasonable they were! Ashley found one that I would LOVE to go back and get her for her birthday. It had horses all over it, and was just as pretty as can be. I’ve got to figure out how to get it for her.
After that, we headed back to the hotel for some swimming. We went up to our room, headed to the left, just like we had before, only the numbers weren’t right. We had checked in and they had put us in room 227. Well, what we *thought* was our room was now 207. That wasn’t right, so we went down to room 227. The key didn’t work. I thought I was losing my mind! I sent Gene down to the front desk, and we found out they had changed the room numbers. They didn’t move any of our stuff, they just changed all the numbers outside the doors. Why? I have NO idea, but they did. We really were in room 207, but had to get a new key since ours was supposed to open 227! Ridiculous!
We *finally* got that all situated, and headed down to the pool. The boys liked the water, but wouldn’t let Gene take them off the steps very much. Lucy had NO desire to even get into the water. Gene took her out and she panicked, so she sat on the edge of the pool with me the entire time. Ashley had fun in the water, and I think she would have stayed in there until we left on Saturday!
After swimming, we grabbed some dinner, and then went back into town to look at a few more shops. Then it was back to the hotel and to bed. We were all exhausted!
The beds were horribly uncomfortable. I don’t think Gene or I ever fell asleep all night – of course, it didn’t help that Lucy was in between us. There was no clock in the hotel room, so I must have asked Gene 800 times through the night what time it was. I swear, it was the longest night in the history of nights.
That meant we were up early the next morning, and ready to head to Dollywood. We grabbed the free breakfast at the hotel and followed some other church members to the park. We parked (a million miles from the entrance), and rather than waiting on the tram (my husband, aka Mr. Impatient) we started walking. By the time we got to Tram Stop B, we caught a tram and rode the rest of the way in.
We got into the park and headed to the Country Fair section. The kids had a BLAST! They had little kids and big kids rides in that section. Zander wouldn’t ride on anything but the rides that even Lucy could ride by herself, but Jace… man, he rode anything they would let him on. Jace, Ashley, and Gene did the ferris wheel first. As soon as they got off that, Jace found the Veggie Tales roller coaster, and rode on that. I’m telling you, this child has NO fear. He wanted to ride the Sky Rider – this thing that takes you up 70 feet in the air and then spins you around in a circle, but he was too short. He cried when they told him he couldn’t ride it. Ash ended up riding it by herself. I was SO proud. I’m such a chicken that I never would have done it period – let alone by myself!!
We spent the entire day walking, riding, and having a BALL. Ashley rode a couple of roller coasters – including one that went upside down! Gene liked having someone to ride with him, and I liked NOT riding them. 🙂 The boys, Lucy, and I found some water play areas while they rode the roller coasters, so it was perfect for all of us.
We also caught a really cute Veggie Tales show on stage. The kids LOVED it, and I’m glad we decided to see it. I wish I had had my good camera with me, because we couldn’t use flash, and my crappy camera is, well, crap. So, the pictures I took didn’t come out, but it really was cute.
We ended up leaving the park about 4pm. Most of the other church members stayed until closing, but I was exhasuted, the kids were exhausted, and we had a 3 hour drive ahead of us. We headed back home and instead of bypassing Gatlinburg, we drove right through downtown. I wish we had done that on the way in. It looked like a place that Gene and I would have loved. We decided he and I will be taking a trip back there without the kids soon.
We stopped in Cherokee and ate, and made it home about 8 o’clock. We were all exhausted, and I’m the only one that got sunburnt, but we really had such a great time. Next time we’ll go down on a Thursday and spend and extra day out and about. That way we’re not so rushed.
Sorry for such a long post. LOTS of catching up to do, I suppose. I did get scared on Saturday, because I didn’t feel the baby move much at all. I was so afraid that I had overdone it. After we got home, I drank a big glass of juice and stayed on the couch. I was SO relieved when I felt him start kicking again.
So, LOTS of excitement over the last few days. I’m looking forward to doing it all over again soon…… but next time without kids!! 🙂