Last week we went on our very first family vacation to the Cleveland area. I have no idea why we waited so long to go on vacation but we did. I suppose life just got in the way. We went out to visit our daughter Hannah's boyfriend's family. This was a year in the making.
We left home around 11:00 am and got into Cleveland around 3:00 pm. We were surprised at how easy of a drive it was. There was a lot of joking and laughing in the car on the way out, which was just what our family needed.
Hannah and her boyfriend were so excited to see each other. I snapped so many pictures of them this weekend. The smile on their faces says it all. Brandon's family is one of the sweetest families we have ever met. They were so welcoming! You know the kind of people you meet for the first time and feel like you have known them for years? Yes that is Brandon's family. I loved all of the conversations I had with his mom. After all of the introductions we headed off to explore the area.
Brandon's mom took us to a beach to watch the sunset. Little did I know but my husband Matt had never been to a beach before! This was a vacation of firsts for our family. Matt and Andrew decided to toss the football around. Before they knew it there were kids flocking to them asking to play.
So after tossing the ball around we noticed these really big chairs behind us. These were built by a couple of eagle scouts as a project.
We could not stop laughing at each other while sitting in these chairs. Its just one of those things that cracked us up.
The chairs just seem to swallow up the person sitting in them.
Today we headed into Cleveland. I was not really sure what to expect. But as soon as we got there I knew I loved this city!
Brandon and family took us to the Science Museum where we watched a few IMax movies. One was called "The Unseen World" that was all about things too small to see with the naked eye. The second one was called "D-Day". We loved that one. We learned a lot of new things about D-day we had not known before. The final one was "Pandas". That one was very cute.
In between the movies we ventured outside to enjoy the sunshine. The kids had a great time feeding the fish in the water.
Some of the fish were huge! After the science museum we were invited back to Brandon's house to celebrate Hannah's birthday.
I know Hannah was so beyond happy to have them celebrate her birthday like they did. I cannot thank them enough!
She got a gift bag full of goodies from Brandon, his sister, mom, step-dad, and brothers. Aside from our immediate family we have never felt so welcomed into another family.
A beautiful shirt, a bracelet and a wind spinner (you hang it up in your window and the wind spins it around). She also got a rubber ducky with a flashlight in it. Brandon certainly spoiled my girl.
Our final day in Cleveland. We are sad to have it come to an end. Today we took a tour of a local fire station not far from our hotel. We also made our first visit to Chick-fil-a.
This was what Andrew had been waiting to do on vacation! He loves to visit other departments and compare the two.
The firefighters were more than happy to give us a tour of the station. I became distracted by talking that I forgot to take pictures.
Andrew could have stayed there all day hearing all about how a city fire station operates. There was a lot that was the same.
Right at the bottom almost center of this picture is a Cleveland fire station. They have a fire boat instead of trucks.
After leaving the tower we headed over to The Christmas Story house! I have always been a big fan of the movie. My uncle took my sister and I to see the movie in the theater in 1983. So this was one thing we had to see on our visit.
The Christmas Tree with packages all wrapped for Christmas morning. The only thing missing was the zeppelin that Randy got for a gift.
Randy and Ralpie's room.
The bathroom where Ralphie ran into so he could figure out the secret code from Little Orphan Annie.
Lifebuoy soap that Ralphie had to put in his mouth after cussing.
Telephone that the mother called Flick's mother to tell her about the cuss word.
"Mommy's little piggy"
I have so many more pictures, but I feel like I may have bored you. We had such a blessed time on our vacation. We are really looking forward to our next one.