Monday, July 4, 2011

In Orlando

*A big shout out to our soldiers today and everyday for protecting our freedom and our lives by serving and devoting themselves to our country! THANK YOU!!!!!*

So, we are now down in Orlando with Jake’s 8th grade girls team for AAU Nationals! We had been looking forward to this trip for months! We are staying at this nice little house with 3 other of our team’s families.

It has worked out perfectly….there is a little pool in the back that is just perfect for the kiddos!

All the games are played at Disney’s Wide World of Sports! The last time we were here was with one of Jake’s high school boy’s teams when JJ was 1 ½ and Jayla was just 6 weeks old!

I took this picture at opening ceremonies.........................
That is the best of the best 8th grade girls teams from across the country! All in all, there are 48 teams. Each team had to win their state’s AAU championship to come to Nationals. Guess who else came to the opening ceremonies?
Yep, Mickey Mouse made his appearance! Jayla about did 10 back flips once he came running out!!! :)

Of course you can’t come to Orlando and make it all business. We’ve squeezed in some time to play too. :) Jake worked hard doing extra trainings over the last few months so that we could get passes to Sea World and Sea World’s new water park – Sea World Aquatica. Here are some pictures from Sea World:

Feeding the dolphins………...............................................

Watching the dolphins from underground.........................

Back when I was a little girl my mom and I lived in California right near San Diego. For us, Sea World was our zoo - we went there all the time - and I fell in LOVE with ocean animals. Growing up I told everyone that I wanted to be a ‘sea animal rehabilitator’. I don’t know if that job title actually exists, but I sure thought it would be awesome to rescue ocean animals, care for and rehabilitate them at Sea World, and then eventually get to let them back out into their natural environment. I also loved watching the animal trainers at Sea World when I was little……which was why I couldn’t wait for Jake and the kids to get to watch a Shamu show for the first time!!!!!!!
I had a hard time timing my shots just right to catch a photo of the whales jumping in the air. This was the best one I got. :)

Shamu splashing us with his tail.....................................

The show was AWESOME and the kids LOVED IT! Their favorite part was when the whales got their tails going to splash us! A LOT of things have changed in these shows since I was little. The trainers used to actually swim with the whales, and I remember that being my favorite part. They would surf on them, stand on their noses, stand on their backs, dive down deep with them and then get thrown in the air by them, etc. I missed that part, but I know they have to be more careful of safety now. Even though the trainers didn’t get to surf on the whales, we did………
Ha! That picture is so hilarious to me! It was the very end of the day and we were all so tired…..we had our little plastered on smiles, and Jayla would NOT smile for the camera by this point at all. :)

We’ve also taken a day to go to Sea World’s water park ~ Aquatica. By far that has been my favorite day since we’ve been here. I opted out of bringing my camera into the park because I didn’t want to keep track of it, but I sure missed a lot of smiles and laughter! The boys are both tall enough to go on just about any water slide so we made our rounds as best as we could while also trying to keep Miss Jayla happy. I LOVED watching them smile and laugh once they got to the bottom of each slide. Justice and I did this water slide….
On the last part of it the slide goes through the dolphin tank so they swim right by you….it was pretty cool but a loonnngggg wait in line!

Other than all that, the games started last night and Kingdom Hoops beat West Virginia Panthers 55-51. Two more games today as part of pool play, then tournament play starts on Tuesday.

No comments: