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Old 05-29-2006, 07:15 PM   #1
christiejay
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Mother and Son Alone in Branson! *** Complete 6-29-06 ***

Cast: Me, Christie, 35, stay-at-home mom and obsessive-compulsive trip planner.
My son, Joshua, 4

Experience: Two previous trips in the past year

Dates: May 20-23, 2006

Lodging: Falls Village Resort, Branson, Missouri (3 nights)

Transportation: car, 8 hours from Clinton, MS



Introduction

So if you know me, you know that my style is very detailed, and unfortunately I still haven't gotten the picture thing going yet - maybe next time! This is another short trip, basically a long weekend. As usual, I will be giving you a very detailed account of our activities for each day. This type of trip report really helps me plan better, and I hope it helps you out as well. It also serves as a journal to help me remember things later that I otherwise would have forgotten about. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]

Of course I'm a Disney nut, and I'm also getting the same way about other places we visit. Well, OK, so maybe not to the same extent as Disney! This was our third trip in one year to Branson, but we're still learning about what they have to offer. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img] Originally Jay (my husband) was supposed to have gone on this trip also, but his work schedule got rearranged and it just didn't work out. But since I drove on our last trip, I still felt comfortable making the trip without him.

As usual, I would welcome any and all comments or questions via a Private Message or a reply to this post. I always like to offer my assistance based on what I've picked up over previous trips. And depending on how good (or bad) a job of writing I do, I might need to do some clarification, so just chime in and let me know! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

Up next: Planning
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Old 05-29-2006, 08:00 PM   #2
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Introduction added 5-29-06

Great start Christie [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/zwavin.gif[/img] More please [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]
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Old 05-30-2006, 10:06 AM   #3
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Introduction added 5-29-06

Great start Christie!! I love your trip reports!! Can't wait to read more about the mother-son trip!!!!
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Old 05-31-2006, 04:43 PM   #4
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Planning added 5-31-06

Planning

So we had just visited Branson twice in the past year - once in May, and again over Thanksgiving weekend. Both of those trips we stayed at one of our vacation club resorts, Big Cedar Wilderness Club. We loved it, but both trips were short, so we were only able to do a few things around town.

However, we knew we would be back soon. I did a little more research online, including reading some of your trip reports [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/thanx.gif[/img] , and found some recently-opened attractions that sounded like fun. I also looked up prices for some of the things on our ever-growing to-do list.

Our trip was scheduled for the weekend Joshua got out of school in May (the weekend before Memorial Day). We would leave the following day (Saturday) and stay for four nights. That would give us three days to spend in Branson, which we thought would be perfect - time to sample a few more of the attractions, plus some down time every day. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img]

We decided not to pre-order any tickets this time, just to wait until we got up there and figure out what we wanted to do at that point. Actually, there was precious little planning involved in this trip - amazing considering me! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] We still had our Ride the Ducks voucher which we couldn't use during our Thanksgiving trip - the Ducks couldn't operate at that time due to the high winds. So our only concrete plan was to see if that voucher could still be used.

We called our vacation club to make reservations, having two options available. First choice was to stay at Big Cedar again, since we liked it so much. But if the only space available was at the other resort (Falls Village) then we would take that as well. Jay called and found out that Big Cedar was booked up, but we could get a 1-bedroom unit at Falls Village for the first three of the four nights we were hoping for. So he reserved that, which unfortunately only gave us two days to spend in Branson. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] Looks like we would be making some tough choices as to how to spend our time.

A few weeks before our trip, Nissan announced that due to slower-than-expected sales, they would be shutting down the assembly line for two weeks this summer instead of just one. This meant that if Jay wanted to get paid for that extra week off, he would have to use his remaining vacation days. So it looked like the trip was off. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/zcry.gif[/img] However, I really wanted to go, so we discussed it. Since on our last trip we went in separate vehicles, and I ended up driving with a passenger who couldn't read a map, you might as well say that I drove by myself on that trip. So I was confident in my driving and navigating abilities, and Jay trusted me as well - the trip was back on! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/applause.gif[/img]

I thought of a few things I wanted to take along, mainly for our downtime at the cabin - music, movies, books, and a jigsaw puzzle. Joshua's travel goodie bag from our Disney trip last summer was still very well stocked, so I included that on our packing list as well. The general plan was to do one or two things each day, then spend the evening at the resort. I also planned to eat all our meals at the resort - sandwiches and chips for lunch, and spaghetti for supper. And of course breakfast was eat-in as well. I took some snacks for the road and to keep with us during the day while we were out and about. Then we would stop for a fast-food lunch on our two driving days.

Just like at Thanksgiving, my whole family was going on trips during this week, all in different directions. My uncle who lives in Lousiana left the weekend before our trip, as he had to go to one of the Carolinas for his work. He would then be heading down to Disney the following Saturday. Next to leave was my aunt, cousins, her sister and niece. They left Thursday on their trip to Disney, where they stayed at All-Star Music. My sister and her husband left on Friday, going to Orlando and staying a week at the Orange Lake Country Club, visiting one of her friends in Tampa, playing golf with my uncle, and possibly visiting Disney since they would be so close! Then Joshua and I left Saturday going to Branson. Plus, my parents had decided to go back to Gatlinburg for their big summer trip, and they would be leaving either Monday evening or Tuesday morning, depending on when my dad finished up his work. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] How is it possible that we could all be going different directions at the same time, twice in just six months? Crazy!

Since our trip would be so short, there wasn't much preparation for me to do. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502no_prv.gif[/img] I spent Friday washing clothes and packing our bags, at least as much as possible. We each had our own duffel-type tote bag instead of a big suitcase or two, plus Joshua's "surprise" activity bag, and another bag of things to do while relaxing at the resort. Then I went down our usual packing list, making sure that we wouldn't forget anything. I pulled out the food we would need, set it out in the kitchen, and asked Jay to bag it up for me. Then it was way past time for bed - I just couldn't get excited about preparing, so it was very late before everything got done. As usual, we plugged in the cooler before bed so it could start cooling off before we got on the road, and I made a list of things for Jay to put in the cooler once we woke up in the morning.

Next up: Day 1 - A very pleasant drive
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Old 06-01-2006, 08:04 AM   #5
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Planning added 5-31-06

have you made it to Silver Dollar City??
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Old 06-02-2006, 04:00 PM   #6
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Planning added 5-31-06

[ QUOTE ]
have you made it to Silver Dollar City??

[/ QUOTE ]

Not this trip - but we did go when we were there over the Thanksgiving weekend. We loved it, and the only down side was that we only had one day to visit - there were so many special activities planned we just didn't have time to really partake. We're hoping to go again another year during their Christmas festivities, and plan our trip so that we can spend 2 days there.
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Old 06-02-2006, 04:08 PM   #7
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 1 added 6-2-06

Day 1 - Saturday, May 20

We woke up at our usual time and tried to follow our normal routine. While Joshua ate breakfast and I got dressed, Jay began putting our things in the car as I let him know that each bag or item was ready to go. We were hoping to be on the road by 8, and it was looking like that would be an attainable goal this time around. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

We soon had everything loaded, and after one last potty break we pulled out. I'll say this for Joshua: on this trip, he never put up a fuss about going to the bathroom. I'd gotten onto him before, because he kept saying that he didn't need to go. And then I explained that when we travel, we don't always know where the next bathroom will be, so he needs to try to use the bathroom when everybody else does. Looks like he learned his lesson, as he went every time I took him. No accidents during the drive! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/applause.gif[/img]

I had hoped to leave right at 8, and it was only about 5 after when we left, so I was excited to see that we would be pretty close to our schedule. I had gathered together some CD's to listen to on the road - some soundtracks and some greatest hits collections as well. So I put in the first disc and we were off! We had an easy drive, although Joshua drove me up the wall counting to 100 so many times! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif[/img]

After about a couple of hours we stopped at the Arkansas Welcome Center, which on Highway 65 is at Lake Village. This is the same place we had stopped at on both of our prior trips, and Joshua still remembered feeding the fish in the lake last May. However, the doors leading out to the back deck were locked, so we didn't ask about it this time. He was excited enough just to see people fishing both on the shore and in boats. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] After taking our bathroom break, we walked back out to the car and I pulled out a snack for Joshua, along with a drink for each of us from the cooler. Then we very carefully pulled back on the road, as there was some construction going on, and orange barrels were everywhere, making the lanes rather narrow at times.

We had planned to eat lunch in Pine Bluff, at the Arby's we had discovered on our Thanksgiving trip, which is just off the interstate and easy to get in and out of. Our first order of business was to visit the restroom, then we went to place our order. I got a little worried when Joshua said he didn't want the chicken nuggets, because they don't have hamburgers and I didn't think he would eat one of their sandwiches. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502no_prv.gif[/img] However, he decided to have the roast beef sandwich with chips and a Coke. I also had a roast beef sandwich, curly fries and a Coke. Joshua ate a few bites of his sandwich, which was fine by me, then finished his chips and ate a few of my fries. I wrapped up the rest of his sandwich and took it with us, putting it in the cooler to stay fresh. After washing Joshua's hands and face we were back on the road and heading toward Little Rock.

The traffic in Little Rock was not too bad this time, and we made it through without incident. I slowed down a little as we approached I-40, because the construction was still in progress, and there had been a wreck on the opposite side of the interstate. This construction zone makes me nervous, because instead of orange cones or barrels, the road is lined with concrete barricades, making it extremely dangerous. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] But we made it through fine, and then my only concern was whether we had enough gas in the car to make it to Conway, where we had planned to fill up. I also had to keep talking to Joshua, as I didn't want him to fall asleep until after we made that stop.

The fuel light in the car came on just as we were coming into Conway, which is where Highway 65 branches off from the interstate once more and heads north toward Branson. We found our exit, but had to sit on the exit ramp for a while, as there had been an accident where the traffic merged ahead and all the rescue vehicles were still there. At least Joshua had a blast seeing the tow truck, ambulance, fire trucks, and police cars! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] We crawled along with the rest of the traffic and finally were able to turn and pull into the Shell station.

Since there wasn't a crowd at the gas pumps, Joshua and I ran inside to use the restroom first, then headed back out so I could gas up. Once finished with that task, I got us another light snack out, along with a drink, and we headed toward Branson. Pulling back onto the highway, I made a quick check across the street, and found a McDonald's next door to the Exxon station - now I knew where we would eat lunch on our return trip! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] We had about another 3 hours until we got to the resort, and we settled in for the last leg of the journey, with Joshua getting a good nap along the way.

Finally, after driving through lots of small towns, we reached Missouri. At least this last leg of the journey is very scenic - you finally get to see the Ozark Mountains! I was enjoying all the scenery, and having Joshua asleep made it a little easier to do that. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] Our resort was in Branson this time, and we turned onto 265 and then 165 to get there. At this point, there were some rain clouds in the sky, but it didn't look like a bad storm, and they passed on by us. After we crossed Table Rock Dam, it seemed like we had to drive forever to find the road to our resort. But finally we spot it, pull in, and find a parking place right up front. Joshua was excited about the playground, while I was glad that nobody else was checking in at the same time - no line to wait in! We used the restroom, checked in, picked up some travel brochures from the lobby, then pulled the car around to our building.

Our building was right behind the clubhouse, and our unit was on the second floor. The room was nice enough, but after the luxury of Big Cedar the past two trips, it just seemed kind of plain. Over the next few days, however, it grew on me and I started to like it. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img] The entryway had the laundry closet and doors to both the Studio (which was occupied by somebody else) and the 1-Bedroom unit (ours). You entered directly into the kitchen/dining room. Beyond that was the living area with a big-screen TV and surround-sound system. There was a sliding door which led to the rather small patio. Outside there was a table and 4 chairs, and the pool was directly below, which made for a few noisy nights and a lack of privacy as well. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] If we stay here again, we'll request a different building! To the side of the living area was the bedroom with a jacuzzi tub and a door which led to the patio out back. The bathroom had a walk-in shower and double vanities. You could also enter the bathroom directly from the living area. If you want to see some pictures, go to www.bluegreenonline.com , click on explore the site (you don't have to log in), then look up Falls Village in Branson, Missouri. You can see pictures as well as the floorplan.

After we unloaded the car, we had a quick snack and then got settled in. I found a movie for Joshua to watch, then I started the never-ending pot of spaghetti, which would sustain us over the next three evenings! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] While I was still cooking, Jay called to check on us - since we no longer have a cell phone, I couldn't call him when we arrived. He had wanted me to call him collect, but I told him it would most likely be cheaper for him to call us direct. So he did and I filled him in on our drive and the various options we had for what to do tomorrow. We had picked up quite a few brochures and didn't know exactly what to choose. We talked for a few minutes, then decided that he would call at the same time on our last night to see how things had gone. Then Joshua and I ate our supper while watching A Bug's Life. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] After cleaning up the kitchen, I washed my hair, then got Joshua ready for bed. While he laid in the bed playing before falling asleep, I read for a while in the living room and worked on our plan of attack for tomorrow. When I first laid down, the noise from the pool below was still fairly loud, but quiet time came pretty quickly and I was able to go to sleep.

Next up: Day 2 - Will our voucher still be good?
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Old 06-05-2006, 12:42 PM   #8
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 1 added 6-2-06

Great update Christie!! Glad you guys arrived safely!! Can't wait to read more!!!
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Old 06-07-2006, 03:43 PM   #9
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 1 added 6-7-06

Day 2 - Sunday, May 21

After a good night's sleep on possibly the best mattress I've ever had, we woke up and had a yummy [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] breakfast of pop-tarts and apple juice. After I ate and cleaned up, it was time to decide what we would be doing today. We had a voucher left from Ride the Ducks from our Thanksgiving trip, and Jay really wanted me to check and see if it would still be good, so that was our first stop. We headed down to the car, me nervously checking and double-checking to make sure I had the room key before leaving. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] With no other adults on the trip, there was nobody else's key I could borrow! We went straight to the "strip" to get to the Ducks, and when we pulled up to that traffic light, there was the Titanic, coming straight for us! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] From reading recent Branson trip reports (statelady01 and GrammyGrumpy, I think) I knew this was something I wanted to do, but I didn't think Joshua would care too much, or let me take the time to appreciate everything. So I simply admired the building/boat and hoped to get there on another trip.

It only took us a few minutes to drive to the Ducks office. I thought they opened at 9, but their sign said they had been open since 8. So since the ticket window was already open, we got in line and I asked about the voucher. Naturally the clerk didn't know and she had to call her supervisor. That didn't take very long, though, and the answer was [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img] , the voucher would still be good since they were closed due to the weather on our last trip. Next question - that voucher was for 4 adults and 1 child. This time it was just me and Joshua. What about the other 3 adult tickets - could they be used on a later trip to Branson? Unfortunately, that answer was [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502no_prv.gif[/img] , since the tickets are issued for just that day. If I'd had my brain working, I could have still gotten the tickets and given them to the people in line behind us, especially since it took us so long to work this all out. But of course my brain wasn't working at the time. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] Note to all: if you ever get vouchers from one of the ReserveDirect websites, you may not want to get vouchers for something that is dependent on the weather to operate.

Once we had our tickets, we walked around the corner to wait for the next boarding call. It came after about 10 minutes, we received our quackers, had our picture taken, and then went upstairs to find a seat on our Duck. From reading Sarah's (DopeyGirl's) trip report, I knew that the very back seat gets very wet, and the Duck looked full, so I was worried about getting drenched until somebody pointed out the seats up front. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] We grabbed a front-row seat on the right-hand side of the vehicle - it sounded good, but wasn't, as you'll soon see. Our driver/captain soon boarded and introduced himself, and we pulled forward and had our picture taken again - this time of the whole vehicle. Then we were off!

The first reason our seats were not so great is that the driver flipped the windshield down to allow some air to circulate, and we got the full force of it. So a good portion of the city driving I had my eyes squinted shut, and was holding onto my ponytail so it wouldn't get in the faces of the people behind us! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] We drove through town toward Table Rock Lake, with our driver pointing out some of the sights along the way. We crossed the dam and headed up Baird Mountain. Up here is where they had cut some rock to help create the fill for the dam. At the top is a display of military vehicles, of which the Duck itself is one. The mountain portion of the tour was very odd. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img] There were military vehicles on either side of the roadway, which was interesting. But there were also sight gags along the way too, and the driver was constantly making jokes. The only think I can compare it to is the Jungle Cruise, but not as good. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502no_prv.gif[/img]

Anyway, after the terrible humor on the mountain, we headed back down to the lake. After explaining about the flotation devices, we made our splashdown into the water - I was surprised at how fast we headed down the boat ramp! Once in the water, our captain allowed all the children to take turns driving us around. He asked Joshua, but Joshua didn't want to - he's pretty shy and I think the driver/captain was a little intimidating to him - he was a pretty hefty guy, with a very robust voice, and there was a lot of (good-hearted) teasing going on throughout the trip. He was trying to create a love match for these two 19-year-olds onboard. That part was pretty funny. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

Once all the kids that wanted to had driven, we headed back into town. We disembarked at the back of the building, and as we went inside somebody was there to hand us our pictures. They were in a folder, with our family photo on one side and the Duck group picture on the other side. With each folder was another photo sheet of a 4x6 and two wallets of our family shot. It was a good deal if you wanted all of it - just $20, but you couldn't see us on the Duck. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] Well, you could see the circle that was my face, and even though I had Joshua sitting in my lap for the photo, you couldn't see him at all because the picture was taken from the other side of the Duck (reason two our seats were bad). So I didn't want to buy that one. I paid $10 for the sheet of 3 pictures of just us.

There was a military museum upstairs also, but I was about ready to eat lunch, so we bypassed it (it'll still be there the next time we visit) and went downstairs, exiting through a gift shop - imagine that! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] My mom had given Joshua some money to buy something with, and he picked out a car - like we need any more toy cars at our house [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] , and I picked out two bags of the bridge mix - chocolate covered nuts. And of course we had our quackers as souvenirs. We were supposed to quack with them every time we saw another Duck during our tour. Poor Joshua, he was trying so hard to follow that instruction, but he thought the driver meant to quack at a real duck (animal) instead of the Duck (vehicle). So every time he saw a bird he kept asking me if it was a duck. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/rofl2.gif[/img] It was pretty funny.

I took one of the traffic shortcuts (the yellow route) back to our resort and we had lunch. I had a turkey sandwich, and so did Joshua, just without the bread. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif[/img] We also had chips, and I opened the bridge mix I had bought. I was so disappointed to learn that hardly none of it was nuts - and the few nuts in there were just peanuts! Most of it was raisins and some type of soft candy. It was good, but next time I'll check the label a little better to see how many different types of nuts are listed. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img] I also made a mental note to head by the Mountain Man store if we had time to buy some "real" bridge mix!

Up next: Day 1, Part 2 - What else can we find to do?
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Old 06-07-2006, 04:56 PM   #10
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 1 added 6-7-06

Great updates Christie [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/zwavin.gif[/img]
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Old 06-08-2006, 11:13 AM   #11
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 1 added 6-7-06

Great update Christie!!! Sounds like you had a pretty good time on the Duck tour. Can't wait to see what you two do next!!!
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Old 06-08-2006, 11:57 PM   #12
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 1 added 6-7-06

Great update, Christie!
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Old 06-09-2006, 04:38 PM   #13
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 2 added 6-9-06

Well, I've been trying to phase out Joshua's afternoon nap, so since he doesn't lay down now until almost 3:00 every day, we had some time to get back out and try something else after lunch. Last night I had shown Joshua the brochure for Talking Rocks Cavern which is in Branson West, and after some assurances that it wasn't scary, he decided he would like to go see it. So that's where we went. This time leaving the resort we took the rest of the yellow route to the end of the "strip" and found that this was truly a timesaver, as there was hardly any traffic on this street. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] It let us out at Celebration City, and Joshua was excited about seeing the rides, but I explained that those were big people rides and we couldn't go there. We headed on out 76 and on the way I noticed a pulloff for a scenic overlook area. I almost stopped, but decided we could come back tomorrow.

After a few minutes we arrived in Branson West and turned toward the Cavern. We saw the road up ahead and drove down into their parking lot. Very small and homey-feeling. They have also opened up the Wings of the World bird attraction here, and I debated whether to buy a ticket to that also, but one bird show had just started and the next was an hour away, so we bought just the cave tickets.

Our guide was almost ready to start the next tour, so we used the restroom and then sat down by the cave entrance to wait for her - I think her name was Rose. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img] She started by explaining the history of the cave, then showed us all the warnings involved with the tour. Because there are so many steep steps throughout, there are health restrictions, just like a roller coaster! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] She assured us that she would stop about halfway down the first set of stairs, and that anybody who felt they couldn't make it could come back up and get a refund.

Then we were ready for our tour! Unfortunately, there was a group of 8 Brownie Girl Scouts and 4 of their troop leaders on this tour. The girls were absolutely freaking out! One made it only a few steps down into the cave and left in tears, another cried the whole way through because she was afraid of heights, and a third had to be coaxed through the whole tour. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] I think they should have had a little more advance preparation for their trip, knowing what to expect might have helped them out. Because they were acting this way, Joshua started saying that he scared of this and scared of that, and I just told him that it was rocks and there was nothing to be afraid of. If it hadn't been for those girls, I don't think he would have said anything! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502no_prv.gif[/img] He made it fine, the only thing that made me nervous was that he might slip on the steps but I held onto him the whole way and we didn't have any incidents.

I've been in a few other caves, and this one was very different. It actually disappointed me a little bit. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] This cave tour consists of just two connected rooms. The formations, however, are really remarkable - huge, and you can get pretty close to them. Most of your tour time is spent climbing up and down all the steps, and waiting for the group to get caught up. Our guide explained how the tour has changed over the years, and showed us an area where they considered exploring past some clay to see if there was another room. It would have been too much work to do so, and they decided to just wait and see if the clay lodged up there will naturally fall and open up to another space. Toward the end of the tour she took family pictures and reminded us to check them out on the monitor back upstairs.

Our picture turned out great, so I decided to buy a copy. Joshua has really been into rocks lately, so I suggested to him that he buy a treasure chest and fill it with rocks - they had a display full of brightly-colored, tumbled rocks and minerals. He thought that was a good idea and picked out a few and said that was all he wanted. Well I didn't want to pay that much for just 5 or 6 rocks, so I convinced him to fill the treasure chest up and we'd give the rest to Daddy. [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] He agreed and I helped him pick out some more rocks. By the way, once we got home, he decided he did want all the rocks after all! There was a mini golf course outside, and I also saw a sign that said they had a nature trail. But once outside I never saw where the nature trail was supposed to start, and plus it was getting time for Joshua to nap so we just drove back to the resort.

I got Joshua situated in the bed and then I went into the living room to cool off and rest for a little while. I read the other brochures we had picked up to try to decide what to do tomorrow. There were just so many options. I also read some magazines I had brought with me, and started working on a jigsaw puzzle also. When Joshua woke up we had a snack, then walked down to the playground which he saw while we were checking in yesterday. He played for a few minutes, then I suggested playing mini golf since there is a free course at the resort. It is kind of like a Putt-Putt course, fun and somewhat challenging, but no cool stuff like dancing hippos at Fantasia Gardens! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img] Joshua surprised me at how well he did on some of the holes - he even had two holes-in-one! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] Of course he also had a few holes with a score of 10 or 12! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] The course wasn't crowded so it was very pleasant. Joshua wanted to play again at the end and was getting pretty fussy when I told him we didn't have time. Actually I just didn't want to do it again! I promised him that we could play again tomorrow, and then we went back to our room.

Back in the room, I put in a movie - I think it was Toy Story - and Joshua watched that while I heated up the leftover spaghetti for our supper. I thought that we would be able to finish it off tonight, but either I hadn't been very hungry, or I put a lot more noodles than normal in there, because there was still some left! After cleaning up, Joshua wanted to play a game, and he picked out Memory. We have the Disney version, and have separated the cards into two sections, so it isn't as hard to play. So we played one round with half the cards and I won. Joshua still hasn't grasped the concept of how you should pick a different card on each of your first turns so that maybe you'll know where the match is. However, he is good at remembering where the cards are, so when I would turn up something we had seen already, he knew exactly where the matching card was.

Next I had wanted to give Joshua a bath, but all we had was a very fancy jacuzzi tub. This one had a light, a waterfall option, plus the standard bubbles. It took me a while to figure out all the controls to adjust the water. Then, after all that, I couldn't get the drain plug to stay down. I just gave up and didn't worry about the bath - Joshua wasn't very dirty so he could just wait a couple more nights until we got back home! I knew he wouldn't get in the shower. I thought about bathing him with the baby wipes I had brought along, but like I said I decided to just not worry about it. Can't you be a little dirty on vacation? [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

Instead of a bath, I just told Joshua to get dressed for bed and we'd play another game of Memory with the other set of cards. He was agreeable to that, and I won again, although he did much better this time! [img]/ubb/images/graemlins/082502yes_prv.gif[/img] After cleaning up, I put him to bed and I stayed up a little while to read. Basically I just didn't want to get in bed with him and listen to him playing and carrying on for a while. I looked over our travel brochures and map one more time, and came up with a plan for what we could do tomorrow. I also finished the puzzle - it was a small one, not too difficult. Then I went to bed and slept very soundly again. I've got to get one of those mattresses for my bed at home!


Next up: Day 3, We Go Exploring
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Old 06-10-2006, 09:51 AM   #14
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 2 added 6-9-06

Sounds like a great day exploring the cave Christie!! Can't wait to read more!!
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Old 06-11-2006, 06:27 PM   #15
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Re: Mother and Son Alone in Branson! Day 2 Part 2 added 6-9-06

Another great update!
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