I wanted to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter so badly, and I knew this was the chance we had been waiting on. For the week of our Thanksgiving holiday, we took the chunk of change we saved and spent it all at Universal Studios Resort. I don't feel guilty at all!
|We bought the boys interactive wands that you can cast spells with all over the park.|
Along with the Wizarding World, we enjoyed Minions, Transformers, Spiderman, Arcade games, roller coasters, and waiting in lines! The park and lines were not as bad as I thought they would be since we went the weekend before Thanksgiving. The most we waited was 40 minutes for one ride. Most of the others were only 20 minutes long.
Before we left Orlando we stopped by the Orlando Temple and recreated pictures that we took the last time we were able to spend a frugal amount of money at Universal.
After Thanksgiving it was time to start thinking about Christmas in a 5th wheel. It was decided that we must have a Christmas tree and Santa has to have stockings to stuff, so those were the only two decorations that we pulled from the meager amount we saved from the purge. We bought a small tree and cut it down even more to fit in the spot under our tv. It was perfect for our little home.
In lieu of a big trip for Christmas (since we just blew all our money during Thanksgiving!) I decided to do some stay-cation adventures around the National Parks in our area. I was still being true to the adventuring, but saving the travels for our trip to the In-laws for a week at Christmas.
Atlanta is rich with Historic sites and there were a few I had never visited, so it was Mommy field-trip time! We spent a day at the Martin Luther King National Historic Site, the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum, and Historic Oakland Cemetery. The boys were not too thrilled about our adventures, but they learned a few things-- like you can't stand on the benches or security guards will come after you, museums have long boring videos to watch before you go to see the sites, and all about MLK, Jimmy Carter, and lots of people who lived during the Civil War.
|This was probably the most fun they had the entire day! :D|
A weird fact about me is that I have a fascination with cemeteries. Especially really old cemeteries. I love reading the names of people whose lives were spent in a world completely different than ours. My time at Oakland Cemetery was a little overwhelming. It is the oldest and biggest cemetery in Atlanta. My main goal was to get this picture.
Our other adventure over the Christmas Holiday was spent exploring Andersonville Prison. It was a notorious Prisoner of War camp during the Civil War. This adventure was more suited for boy adventures. The Historic site has replicas of the stockade walls, the Shebang shelters made by the prisoners, earthen bulwarks, cannons, and the front gate where they brought in the Prisoners. I know the boys were excited to learn something because when we left they were filling in the Junior Ranger books, and when we got home I found them doing this:
|Making their own Shebang shelters.|
There is also a story that as the Prisoners were starving and without clean water because of a polluted creek as their only source, a huge storm brought rain and flooded the creek and then as a miracle a bolt of lightening struck the ground inside the prison and exposed an underground spring. This spot was memorialized by a fountain and monument. My children decided to revel in Providence Spring.
With our stay-cation adventures over we spent most of our Christmas Holiday at Camp Giggey (In the back yard of Grandma and Papa Giggey) We were blessed to be able to spend Christmas at home AND with family this year. It was awesome. We spent Christmas morning at church, opened presents at home, and then spent time with the many parts of our family.
|The best present came from Mom and Dad Giggey!|