Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Fun in the Sun in South Florida

A few days ago, Dear Hubby came home and surprised us...he had booked a little get away trip to a place off the East Coast of Florida called Singer Island, followed by a stop over in Miami. One little tidbit about Singer is actually a peninsula versus an island...but a great get away from it all sort of place regardless of whether it is an island or not...
Still hard to believe that these places are within a day's drive from our home...every once in a while, it hits me that yes, we really do live in South Florida and this was one of those times.
We had a great time!
We really needed the getaway, as things had been a bit stressful here lately so getting away to relax and kick back was really nice.
We stayed at a great place with a lovely view of the Atlantic Ocean.
Spent time at the pool, the beach, and then, we checked out some of the sites nearby, including the Schoolhouse Children's Museum.This children's museum in nearby Boynton Beach was a cute little museum that had some interesting and informative exhibits. Big Bro loved the cow and train exhibits there. Little Bro loved an exhibit that explained how they would get across Florida waterways in the pioneer days.
Both boys enjoyed their time there  at the museum, as well as hanging out by the pool and the beach by our resort.
Getting to put our feet in the Atlantic Ocean was fun.
We collected some small shells and built some sandcastles.
Found it interesting that the shells were more weathered and worn looking and the Atlantic sand was much more coarse and darker than the sand we are more accustomed to from the Gulf of Mexico...made it more fun to collect the shells and sand, as they are different from what we see all of the time...
One of the highlights for the boys was visiting the Playmobil Fun Park, located in nearby Palm Beach Gardens. What an awesome place! There are only a handful of these places in the world.
It was great to get to go there and play for ourselves. Both Big Bro and Little Bro love, love, love playing with Playmobil. Playmobil toys really allow for a child to use their imagination and have fun. They played there for hours and had a ball. Dear Hubby and I also had fun there, as it was not chaotic, but rather, a very peaceful, fun, creative sort of place. Cannot believe that they only charge a dollar per person as an entrance fee...guess that they must figure they will recoup their money when people buy sets of Playmobil from their gift shop there. Both boys selected small boats that actually float on the water. They also have the capacity to be retrofitted with small motors, so that made them all the more fun. Big Bro decided to take his for a spin at one of the pools at our resort and had a great time playing with and chasing after his boat.
Following our fun closer to the Palm Beach County area, we then drove down to check out Miami and South Beach. South Beach was not nearly as racy as I thought that it would be...everyone was having a good time walking, shopping, and eating at outdoor cafes and such...
We found a place that served some tasty brunch food. Sat and did some people watching while we waited for our meals. The boys had fun listening to the music that was playing and even got up and did some dancing at our table...
Not something you can do just anywhere, but in Miami, especially in South Beach, why not get up and dance at breakfast?!?
Told by our waiter that we had made a good choice to check out South Beach during the morning...he did make it pretty clear that it is not the same sort of family friendly place at night, so luckily, we made a good call to do that in the a.m.
Also headed over to check out the cruise ships, to see Biscayne Bay, and to check out yet another fun spot for kids,  the Miami Children's Museum.
In case you are wondering about our new-found love of museums for kids, when we purchased our annual pass at the newly opened Glazer Children's Museum, we did the upgrade that allows you to have reciprocity at all of the Association of Children's Museums member museums throughout the U.S. Linked the list of reciprocal program participants in case anyone reading this post wants to see if their local museum has any sort of reciprocity with anyplace else...well worth the upgrade if you happen to like to travel with your family and want to have a great free thing to do in the various cities you visit.We are so glad that we opted to get this kind of pass, as we will definitely get our money's worth out of our membership.
The Miami Children's Museum was a very worthwhile stop. Had some exhibits that the boys really enjoyed, especially the cruise ship exhibit and the port / loading dock exhibit. They also enjoyed the music recording studio, the fire and police stations, the bank, the teddy bears from around the world exhibit, and the outdoor play space. 
On the ride home, we thought that it would be a great educational experience to drive through Alligator Alley and past the Florida Everglades. Well, folks, a bit of a disappointment here. We see more alligators in the ponds near our home than we did as we drove through Alligator Alley.
Plus, driving by the Everglades is totally blah...sure it is neat to take a boat ride through it but driving by it is rather mundane. Just picture seeing swampland for hours and hours with an occasional bird or two and that is what it was like. Not at all as picturesque as either Dear Hubby or I had imagined it to be...but at least we can say that we did it as a family...we made the most of it by singing silly songs and playing car games, along with occasionally looking out for anything that resembled an animal along the way...

All in all, though, an awesome trip!
A big, big thanks to Dear Hubby for the great surprise!
This post is linked up to the We Play posts over at Childhood 101...

Well, here are some photos of some of the fun times we had...hope that you will enjoy them.

Also, the links I have provided in this post are just because I thought that maybe some of you would like to check them out...did not receive any sort of compensation for linking them in this post. 


Jennifer said...

This looks like so much fun... and like a great MMM post. Now, if only I could get that link up this week. Better late than never, right. I'll have it up tomorrow night. Will you consider going back and linking up

Leptir said...

WOW! Great adventure! Thanks for sharing!

Rebecca said...

What a fun trip! The Playmobile place looks so interesting. It's so good to know that it's a mellow, creative place. We happened to be nearby the Lego area at Downtwon Disney - it was anything but mellow and creative!

The children's museum in Miami looks really nice. We also have our passes to the Glazier museum in Tampa - maybe we can go together sometime! I've been so impressed with it - it seems Montessori-inspired in many ways. Did you see the continent boxes? So cool! I plan to write a blog post about my impressions.

Glad to see what you've been up to. Take care!

Christie - Childhood 101 said...

Your adventures always look like so much fun :)

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