Monday, May 11, 2009

It is not often that I am able to devote a whole day to one on one quality time with my children. Occasionally, I am able to take one to the mall, or lunch, maybe even a movie. But, this past Saturday, Nate and I went to Santa Cruz for the day. I cannot even begin to put into words how much fun we had. We have been to Santa Cruz several times. It is one of Nate's favorite places. However, when we go as a family, we have to accommodate everyone's individual favorite activities. Saturday was all about Nate. And anyone who knows Nate, knows he is CRAZY! He is fearless. And at just six, he has been disappointed many time by being to little to ride the rides he wants so badly to ride.
This was the first ride to catch his interest!
"The Blue Roller Coaster"

First things first. We have to get tickets and measure Nate to see what rides he is tall enough to ride this time. It looks like he has grown. I have been documenting his growth over the past couple of years by this very measuring stick. And, of course, I take a picture each time.
We headed from the ticket booth toward The Blue Roller Coaster. Nate spotted the Haunted Castle; well actually he spotted the giant black widow spider. So he decided this would be our first ride. I gave him the "remember, everything in here is pretend" pep talk before we went, but I didn't want to talk him out of it. When we came out he said to me, "Mommy, did that scare you." I said yes, it was a little bit scary. What do you think? He replied, "I have the goose spots and my legs are shaking." But, he was still smiling. (I don't know where 'goose spots' came from.)
When we reached The Blue Roller Coaster we met our first obstacle.
The dreaded height limit.
One very disappointed "little" boy.
His sadness was short lived as we went in search of ride he could ride. He was certainly taller this time and it did open up more rides to him. We watched the cars whirl around in circle, then stop and whirl around backwards. This is one of my least favorite rides! Nate measured himself and was tall enough to ride with an adult. I tried to talk him out of it, to which he replied, "but mommy, I'm big enough to ride it." What could I say?
Then Nate informs he that he wants to ride "the ride that is like the Ferris Wheel, but not the Ferris Wheel. The one that goes upside down, because I am brave enough this time." I loved this. We have ridden this ride together before, but did not rock it much or flip it. We did not flip it this time either, but did get it rocking pretty good. Maybe, next time.
We rode the swings. What a great view of the beach!
Nate's first roller coaster ride! I rode with him, but I had to get this photo of him in the front seat of the coaster. I also bought the outrageously expensive picture they take and make into a keychain, to commemorate the moment.
It wasn't a bad little roller coaster.
Ok, so maybe it was a little tame. The Tornado is more Nate's speed!
Here is doing his best to spin it.
Again, my happy, fearless boy. This time on the Freefall.
He loved it!
Then there was this horrible creation. I tried to avoid it. Tried to distract him. Hoped he was too short. Anything short of refusing to ride this vomit inducing monster! But, guess what? He was tall enough to ride it with an adult!
Oh the excitement!
Do I look terrified?
Look at him, poised and ready.
Afterward. Have you seen a happier boy?
Ok, so this smile was worth the ride.
Well, after that last ride, Mom needed to sit down for a bit, seriously! So, I suggested that Nate ride a few of the "kiddie rides" by himself, while I watched. He humored me. Doesn't he look excited to be riding these boats around in circles?
Then there were the flying dragons.
He does usually like these airplanes.
We always ride the Ferris Wheel together. It is a Santa Cruz tradition. So, we made sure to save enough tickets to ride it before we left.
We had enough for one last ride. The "water ride"
AKA the log ride. It was a fun way to end the day.
Then a chocolate dipped ice cream cone, and it was time to go.
I put a lot of thought into this trip. I bought new sand toys to play with and a new kite to fly on the beach. Well, we never even made it to the sand. Nate had a ball on the rides. I can't believe how my little boy is growing up. He is such a free spirit. He's not afraid to try anything. I'm so happy I was able to spend this day with him, to see Santa Cruz through Nate's eyes. To enjoy the excitement of being brave, like Nate!


Jodi said...

What a fabulous documentation of your trip!

sportzmom said...

How nice to spend time with just one child! I am sure that he loved it! I would have thrown up on that one ride for sure...the things we do to put a smile on our children's faces! Hope you have a great week!

Amy said...

What a great mom you are -- first to arrange to spend a whole day with just Nate. Second to go on some of those rides. No way could I do it.