Last November, the Steeler football team that the boys play for decided to sponsor a trip to Kalahari Water Park over mid-winter break in February. Chris and I looked at the price the team was offering and knew that we couldn't pass it up. Our family has not been on any sort of "real" vacation since 2005. That's a REALLY long time! So we took the plunge and made a reservation. Because of our great deal, we saved over 60% of what the cost would have been without it and we took all our own food to save money.
Tuesday, Grammy came and picked up Lizzie. Poor Liz didn't get to go but we decided it would be really hard with her and she wouldn't really care anyway. We headed out and arrived at Kalahari, in Sandusky, Ohio, that evening. Even after just going through the front door, I knew it was going to be amazing. There was African safari music playing and tons of African art and animal statues. My words can't do it justice. It was super cool. We had a great bell-hop who helped the kids and I make our way to our room while Chris parked the car. On the way to the room, he stopped at a giant window where we could look out over the water park facilities. Again, my words can't do it justice. Incredible...Amazing...Totally Cool! 180,000 square feet of water park fun. We unloaded at the room, threw our suits on and headed out.
It was upon the heading out that my water park virginity came into play. I learned a lot about what to do next time.
Tip #1. Bring a cover up so you don't have to walk through the crowded hotel lobby in your swimsuit.
Aside note: Even though I am fat, it doesn't really bother me that much. I am like a reverse anorexic. So it didn't really bug me to be in public in my swimsuit. But it was cold.
Tip #2. Make sure everyone brings sandals.
Tip #3. You don't need your own towels.
Tip #4. Don't go to a water park when you are pregnant.
Tip #5. Don't go to a water park if you want to relax.
Tip #6. When you enter the park, your kids lose all ability to listen to a word you say.
So that night we played in the wave pool, the wet play area, water slides, hot tub and the little baby area. We went to bed so excited about the next full day at the water park! I fell asleep to the sounds of Chris and the kids playing Chopsticks and I am A Child of God on his iPhone fart piano.
Spence overlooking wave pool from right outside our cabanaEm in wave poolOur room had two queen beds and a pull out couch. Definitely enough sleeping room. We had a small fridge and microwave. In the morning we ate cereal and Poptarts and headed to the park. We played all day. The only bummer was that the lazy river was closed. I was really looking forward to the lazy river since I couldn't go on any of the water slides. The Steelers had rented a cabana where we could keep our stuff and hang out and relax. It was great!
Tip #6. Give your kids some kind of a watch so they can meet you at designated times.
After we spent a long time looking for our kids, we went back to our room and ate sandwiches and snacks for lunch. Then, you guessed it, we headed back to the park. We took a small detour and played a few arcade games and did a round of mini golf.
Tip #7. Get some kind of waterproof bag that you can keep your camera in so it's available for pictures all the time. Also, see Tip #1. Tip #1 very important.
Tip #8. If you aren't careful, your wallet will open up and drain itself of money.
Aside note: Someday, I would really love to be able to buy all the food from the expensive snack vendors and drinks in cool shaped glasses and get everyone a t-shirt. I feel guilty that I want to but I really do want to. Someday. Just once.
We exhausted ourselves and headed back to our room after another round of "Hunt down your children in a building the size of over 3 football fields in a mob of people." It was like real live "Where's Waldo."
Calvin fell asleep at the foot of the bed immediately. We ate more sandwiches and decided to get a little treat of some loaded french fries and chicken wings. That was fun. Everyone went to bed early. Except Cameron. I woke up at 3am to the sound of him ripping open the Poptarts and helping himself to a nice glass of pop. Got him back in bed and then we slept in.
We had to check out by 11 but we could still use the park until 3. We checked out and went back to the park. The lazy river was open, hooray! I could have spent all day in there if Cameron would have cooperated. He didn't really love it. We played another game of "Where's Waldo," got everyone dressed and were on the road around 2pm.
It was serious fun and I really can't wait to do it again. I think that by following the tips of what I've learned, it will be an even better trip next time.
We picked up Lizzie as soon as we got home and she gave me the biggest, nicest hug. Totally rewarding! Nala was thrilled we were home too. She didn't have any accidents in the house while we were gone, thankfully!
I am so glad we were able to do take this trip! I give it 4 out of 5 stars. We are definitely going back!