Monday, October 12, 2015

Maren's Visit--Lion Country Safari, Beach days, Rain, and Ice Cream

Over the next few days while Maren was in town visiting last spring, we were able to have several more adventures.  Sadly, though, many of our plans had to change drastically each day due to the weather.  Poor Maren!  We figured a visit in April would be fine, since the rainy season usually doesn't start till mid to late May, but we were definitely wrong.  We had to be pretty flexible with our plans and adapt to the massive downpours that hit us for the rest of Maren's stay.

One of our adventures was taking Auntie Maren to Lion Country Safari.  Since the first part of the park is a drive-through safari, we figured we couldn't go wrong incase it rained on us.  Daxton LOVED showing his Auntie Maren around the Lion Country Safari.  We saw lots of different animals and Daxton was very excited to tell Maren all about them.   

Our favorites were all the curious ostriches who loved getting their pictures taken.  Several pecked at our windows and ate the bugs off the front of our car. 

By the time we finished the drive-through safari park, dark thick clouds were hovering above.  We hurried into the walk through section of the park so we could feed the Lorikeets and Giraffe.

Feeding the Lorikeets is always so much fun!
I love how they calmly land on your arms and even head at times.  Maren was able to hold a small cup of fruit smoothie for them to drink out of.  I love their brightly colored feathers.

Daxton's favorite part of Lion Country Safari was feeding the giraffe. We bought several pieces of lettuce for the giraffe to eat.  It's always SO crazy watching giraffe eat.  Their tongues are incredible long and dark black.  Maren was a sweet heart to lift Dax up several times to let the giraffe grab the lettuce out of his hands.  Each time the giraffe would wrap their tongue around the lettuce leaf it would touch Daxton's arm or hand.  He would squeal loudly and then start laughing with joy.

My absolute favorite though, was watching this cutie tromp around the safari park wearing this ensemble, which he picked out himself...
Nothing like a batman tshirt, camo shorts, dragon rainboots, and a safari hat!

Even though the weather didn't allow many beach days, we were still able to squeeze in some time at Lauderdale By the Sea before a massive storm rolled in.  It was funny that we were chilly since it was still in the 80s outside.  I guess it just shows how pathetic Daxton and I have gotten over the past couple years of the Florida heat.

Panorama of Lauderdale by the Sea

This little man still had a blast even though we were a bit cold.  He ran around chasing birds, splashed in and out of the waves, built sand castles, and thoroughly entertained Maren and I.

Daxton was especially silly, when he found out how fun it was to fill buckets of ocean water and then pour them on the top of his head.  It was quite entertaining!

At least it was absolutely stunning!
Even if the clouds were rolling in...

My favorite part of the day is always when I get a little snuggle time from this active toddler...

Watching the storm roll in...we were able to stay all the way till it started to rain since there wasn't any lightening. 

Easily one of my favorite pics of Maren!
She has truly perfected the classic jumping picture.

The storm rolled in pretty quickly, so we packed everything up and tried to wait out the heavier part of the storm under a gazebo.  Gotta love Maren's priceless expression below.  The heavy rain was pretty much the soundtrack to her Florida trip!

Before dropping Maren off at the airport, we decided to squeeze in one more fun adventure by eating at Jaxson's, a yummy ice cream parlor next to the beach.  Daxton was pretty excited when he realized he got his own ice-cream sundae with his meal.
Maren and I split an amazing creation as well...

Daxton and I were pretty sad to have to say goodbye to our Maren. We had so much fun while she was in town visiting.  I've loved having her in my life the past 12 years.  So many amazing adventures and memories.  She's been an incredible friend over the years and we love her dearly.
Come back and visit anytime!
Hopefully there'll be better weather this time :)

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