For Thanksgiving this year, we went back to the Great Smoky Mountain Lodge Indoor Waterpark, which we visited as a family for the first time two years ago. Both times, I have visited with infants and worried about noisy nighttime feedings and sleeping accommodations (since we all shared one hotel suite/apartment), but both times everything turned out okay. It’s a little stressful traveling with a baby, but it was still a lot of fun.
The traditional family photo. 🙂 We usually take these group photos in the summer, and my mom always complains that we’re just a sea of white legs every time. Notice THIS time the weather is chilly enough that we’re all wearing jeans–except for her!
I have never visited this hotel during swimming season, so I’ve never had the chance to experience all of their outdoor slides and rides. However, the indoor section of the lodge was large enough to keep us occupied for days, with plenty of slides, a wave pool, multiple kiddie play areas, and a giant arcade for those who didn’t care to swim.
If we could have somehow waterproofed the camera and shot a video as we went down the slide that we affectionately termed “the toilet bowl” (actual name=”storm chaser”), you would have been able to hear my endless shrill scream that my family kept teasing me about (and a few of the lifeguards at the bottom of the slide, as well). Some of those slides are REALLY terrifying, and I’m not quite as brave as my two nephews. Most of the footage we got was of the kids:
My nephew Drew with Jake on the right
Clearly he’s having a terrible time. 😉
My nephew Drew is really sweet about wanting to play with Jake and visit with baby Teddy, too. He’s always been like that! Zach is older, and even though Jake follows him around like a puppy, Zach is more concerned about Jake breaking his stuff or giving him some space. 🙂
I couldn’t resist: Here’s a side-by-side of Jake the last time we brought him here, and now two years later still enjoying the same swing. He’s just about too big for it!
My mom was really great about watching Teddy and allowing me to go have fun with Jake or just with the other adults. It would not have been a very fun vacation if she hadn’t been so willing to babysit!
Jake was here, but why isn’t he in the photo? Apparently, when he saw these moose walking down the hallway, he took off running in the opposite direction. They were very friendly and tried to wave to him, but to him they were like two characters out of a horror film. He kept his eyes peeled for them for the rest of our stay at the lodge!
This little guy had a rough few days. Drooling like crazy and waiting to get those teeth in any day now…he just wasn’t his usual smiley self.
Of course, we had to get a family photo with this guy while we were here!
This is the only place I know where kids get to swim with Santa Claus. Who else knew that Santa has Hawaiian swim trunks?!?
Not sure what Justin is doing here, but this free-fall ride was one of the many attractions inside of the giant arcade. I didn’t do much arcading with them on the afternoon that they all went because I was up in the hotel room with the two boys taking a long, luxurious nap. 🙂
Decorating Christmas cookies…though I think more frosting went directly into Jake’s mouth than on his cookie. 😉
It’s hard to believe that Christmas is right around the corner! I’m usually so early about getting my decorations up and sending out Christmas cards. But this year I feel like I’m a little behind. I think that’s inevitable with two little ones running the show. 😉 Hopefully, I’ll get a chance to update my blog before Christmas!