Saturday, March 15, 2014

Branson!!!

Spring break came to us this last week, and apparently you can't be a real Missourian without going to Branson, MO.  So, in true Missourian fashion, and in our attempt to become true Missourians, we decided to take the family to Branson.  It is a town in the midwest that is comparable to Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, TN for you southerners, or a lot smaller and a much more family friendly version of Las Vegas for you westerners.

Yesterday (the day after we got home from Branson), Cooper wrote a journal entry, he was not prompted by us, or by anyone.  He just loved it so much that he wanted to write it all down.  So, I will now refer you to his journal (it will help if you click on them to make them bigger):

Unfortunately we forgot to bring our camera, but luckily Emily decided a few weeks ago to upgrade her old school brick phone for an iphone, so we were still able to take a lot of pictures.  The problem with this is that as several of you know, Emily rarely has her phone, so we only took pictures when she remembered to have her phone with her.

This trip really was probably our best family vacation to date, it was much needed.  As much as we love Kirksville, it was time to get out of here and enjoy another place.  The kids were great, overall.  Lots of swimming, lots of food, lots of fun.  Here are some of the pictures:
Excited to leave home, helping mom pack clothes
Rise and Shine babies
The hotel provided us with 3 high chairs
The brothers and their tootie fruities
Lots of swimming was done, this is how we do it with the triplets:
After the swimming party

Our first adventure of "free" fun.  We went to the Table Rock Dam Visitors Center, the Showboat (just to look at it), the fish hatchery, and then we went down to the river where we disturbed a lot of fisherman by letting the kids throw rocks in.  It didn't seem to bother the fisherman, since they were still catching fish.  This is where we learned that Anderson likes to yell when he throws stuff, "Daaaahhh" (no pictures of the rock throwing, sorry):
Cooper is wearing the beer goggles!
Our first family photo, in a very long time.  In front of the Showboat
Feeding the fish at the hatchery
Bennett loved the fish

The next day, we went down to Branson Landing, which is the hip place, with all the cool stores.  We rode the trolley that takes you around historic Branson, then to the other side of Branson Landing.  It is right along the shoreline of Lake Taneycomo.  Not to be outdone by the Bellagio in Vegas, Branson Landing also has it's own dancing water fountains.  
Yes, we are too cheap to have our children ride one at a time!
Baby boys
The dancing water fountains
This is how they slept on the couch bed, they were tired
The following day, is when we splurged a little.  I took the brothers plus Bennett to the aquarium.  So awesome!  They loved it!  This place had just about everything, from touch tanks, to feeding the sharks, to alligators, to black light mini-golf, to free arcade room, to wolves, to you name it and it was there.  
Luke and Bennett in front of a couple of alligators
Ethan and Cooper touching the Bamboo Sharks
I found it funny that Ethan would touch the sharks, but not these little Doctor Fish
These little fish would eat the dead skin off of your hands, like an animal manicure
Bennett and the black lights
Cooper and Luke with an alligator

I don't know if you remember, but a few weeks ago I wrote about how Anderson is a little pest.  We are constantly saying this, "Anderson, NO!!!"  This is a sneak peek into the life of Anderson, our little pest:
Step 1: get on coffee table
Step 2: begin ascent to TV table
Step 3: TV table conquered
Once down from the TV table, he realized that Bennett had a plastic bag
that he wanted, so he tackled Bennett and made him cry, Anderson got the
plastic bag and had the last laugh (literally, he laughed)
When done conquering the TV table and Bennett, he decided he needed to
conquer the dishwasher.  "Anderson, No!"

Then it was time to head home.  There were a few places that we were told about that we had to go to  while in the area.  First was Lambert's Cafe.  This place is great!  It is known as the Home of Throwed Rolls.  They literally throw hot rolls at you if you ask for them, sometimes (like in Ethan's case) they throw the roll at your face!  After Lamberts we went to the world headquarters of Bass Pro Shops, the sign read, "The Grandaddy of all Outdoor Stores", and believe me, it was!  Forget Cabela's and every other Bass Pro Shops you've been to, this place is HUGE!!!  It had alligators, fish galore, turtles, ducks, etc (all living).  Plus it had a ton of taxidermy, as well as wood carvings of world record fish.  This place was awesome, I want to move to Springfield just so we can live by this place!
Just look at the drink cups!
Nice catch Ethan!
Of course, Emily forgot her phone, so no inside pictures
(I actually have to give credit to Wikipedia for this picture)