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Saturday, January 19

Florida Trip Day Six New Year's Day 2008

We woke up late on January 1, 2008. I guess we were all tired from the drive. The traffic on 192 was bumper to bumper and it took us a while to get to the restaurant. We ate at Perkins and then headed to Sea World. The traffic was still bad, but once we got past the entrances to Disney World it cleared up. We were glad we had decided to go to Sea World
We arrived at the gates of Sea World at 11:30, which was late and we knew we wouldn't see it all in one day. So once we were inside we got a map and let the boys decide what they wanted to see.
The first thing we saw was this beautiful Christmas tree below. It was so pretty and right by the water.

Then we saw a group of beautiful birds. I believe, but am not sure, that they are some kind of storks or cranes. Any help here would be appreciated.
To the right, we saw Shamu's Stadium. We hoped to head that way a little later.
The gardens at Sea World are beautiful. As we neared the sea lion's area, we saw the area below.
Here are the sea lions. They also had some seals in this area. The boys loved seeing these beautiful animals. There was a lot of noise as the bull that has his head up was warning all the other males to stay away. He seemed to have his very own harem and wasn't about to share.
The fellow below had been rescued and was missing an eye. Once he is healed and rehabilitated, the keeper said he will be set free. All of the sea lions and seals in this area have been rescued. The keeper fed them while we were there and this guy is looking for his share of the fish.
Below the boys poise by a sea lion statue. It was beautiful and a designated photo area.
Next the boys wanted to see the stingrays, so we headed in that direction and bought some fish so they could feed them. Brandon was keen on feeding them. Jordan was a little leary at first, but he finally did it. You feed a stingray by putting a fish between your first and middle finger and placing your palm flat on the bottom of the tank. The stingray will swim over your hand and take the fish. We did get to feel them as well and their skin is smooth as glass.
Then we stopped by the stingray pups. They have several and they ranged from very tiny to the size of the one below. The boys wanted to stay around the stingray tank for a long while. They found these creatures very interesting. Stingrays glide through the water and they are fast.
Next we headed for the dolphin area. They weren't feeding the dolphins while we were there. Here is the view we had when we headed that way.
Here are a couple of photos that were taken from the underwater viewing tank. It's hard not to get the reflection from the glass.
The above photo was taken from above the dolphin tank. A wonderful man by the name of Wayne, who works with the dolphins at Sea World brought along a bucket of ice and threw it in the tank right in front of the boys. The dolphin came right out of the water and almost hit Brandon in the face. The boys got to touch it and they were ecstatic.

As we left that area I was taking a photo of the boys and a lovely couple from Japan stopped and offered to take a photo of all of us. I am not a photogenic person. Everyone else looks great, but I look terrible. LOL That's why I never post photos of myself on my blog. I do get a good one once in a while, but this is definitely not it. However, it is a family photo and I guess that's what I must look like.
We sat down for a while in the area below. It was peaceful and quiet and the surroundings were beautiful.
Next we headed over toward the horse stables. I didn't know that Budweiser, Anheimer Busch owned Sea World, but they do and this area was beautifully decorated for Christmas.
A statue of one of their very famous horses. I couldn't resist this shot, but the menfolk started calling me a shutterbug. That's okay. I have some lovely photos.
This beautifully landscaped area below was not far from the horse barns. More heckling about being a shutterbuy. I ignored them. LOL
On our way back toward the main gate, we saw this area with the pink flamingos. Brandon loves to tell everyone that flamingos are pink because they only eat shrimp and he is correct.
We stopped at the gift shop on our way out and the boys picked up a couple of stuffed toys. Brandon's favorites are manatees, so that is what he bought. Jordan chose a seal. By this time it was 6:30 and Sea World closed at 7pm. When we got to the exit, we were given an update on our tickets that allowed us one free day at Sea World as long as we went back before January 11th. We were glad to be so honored and accepted. The boys were thrilled that they might get to go to Sea World another day. There was so much we hadn't seen and Brandon said it was better than Disney. Remember, we had the boys with us three years ago at Disney World.

We went and had a light dinner and then went back to the hotel. The boys and I went swimming in the heated pool that was 105 degrees. It was lovely and relaxing. I was hoping that the boys would be so relaxed they would go to sleep early. No such luck. They were so excited about their day in Sea World that they didn't fall asleep until 11pm. That is late for Brandon, but Jordan is a night hawk. I was glad when Grandma could finally crawl into bed. I think I was asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow, but we had had a wonderful day and made some great memories.

I hope you've enjoyed the photos of our first day at Sea World. ~Blessings, Mary~

19 comments:

  1. It looks so fun. My sister was just at that Sea World last week also and had a great time.
    PS - I hate my pictures too - that's why I rarely post them.

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  2. Mari,

    Sea World was so much fun. The boys loved it and I took lots of photos. This is only the very best of the lot.

    I am not very photogenic. The odd time we get a good one of me. I was when I was young, but didn't age too gracefully.

    Thanks for dropping by.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  3. I really enjoy these pictures. I love dolphins so much. You are lovely my friend.

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  4. I know I'd enjoy Sea World more than Disney.

    The gray birds are great gray herons, I think, then there are some kind of ducks, and the white bird is a white ibis, for sure.

    I'd have been exhausted after your full day as well, Mary. You probably needed a vacation from your vacation when you got home! ;o)

    Have a blessed Sunday, my friend.

    Love and hugs,

    Diane

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  5. Denise,

    It was a once in a lifetime experience for the boys to get to touch and feed dolphins and stingrays. I don't think they'll ever forget it.

    I continue to prayer for you, my friend.

    Love and blessings,
    Mary

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  6. Diane,

    I still need a vacation from my vacation. I'm still real tired. However, it was worth it. We made lots of memories with the boys.

    Love and blessings,
    Mary

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  7. Wow....the venture around Sea World was super!! I've enjoyed this segment of your trip best so far. LOL

    We have an aquarium [Texas State Aquarium] here in our town, tho we don't have any whales that I know of, we do have a dolphin tank and we DO have sting rays - and I got to touch one too. I was just flabbergasted that they were so silky feeling. A little anxious to actually touch one, but oh so worth the effort for I'll never forget the 'touch'. A beautiful, beautiful Sea World in Florida [we went to the on in San Diego]...it's much better I think, by your photos, than the on in Southern California.

    And the family photo was tops Mary!!! I loved that one. And the one with the boys by the statue was great too!!!

    Okay...color me gone for a while, time for my daily walk. And it's cold, so gotta bundle up. LOL

    And wanted to let you know I posted the fabulous "young at heart" award this morning. Thanks again.

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  8. PS --
    I have an Blog Excellence Award for you today!! Drop by and pick it up if you wish---
    It's on the Sunday blog date - you may have to scroll down to find it.

    Hugs

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  9. Anni,

    Thanks so much for your kind and lovely comments. I've sent you an email.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  10. Anni,

    The award is beautiful. I will post it later today. I'm very honored.

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  11. I'm always the one holding the camera unless someone sneaks up on me. It's good to see a photo of you though.

    The pictures are beautiful.

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  12. Granny,

    Thanks for your kind comments. The only photos that are usually taken of me is when I ask someone to take a photo of me and the boys. I don't have many photos of my Grandma and want them to have some good memories some day.

    Thanks for dropping by.
    Blessings,
    Mary

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  13. The pictures were great.. Love the one with you and the boys...... I will go to Sea World one of these days and San Diego also..... My boys have been to Sea World with their Dad and really enjoyed it.... I love the vacation that you are taking us on and I understand the need for a vacation after the vacation.........

    hugsx0x00x

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  14. Denise,

    My energy is flown the coop, my friend. I am still struggling to get back on track. LOL Is this a sign of getting old? My 80 year old mother could do better than I am.

    I'm glad you're enjoying the photos. We had a great time at Sea World and don't forget we had another day and there are more photos for near the end of our trip.

    Thanks so much for dropping by. I hope you are having a relaxing Sunday.

    Love and blessings,
    Mary

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  15. Sounds like a wonderful day. I haven't been to Sea World, but love going to the aquariums here on the coast.

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  16. Paula,

    Sea World was wonderful. That and Animal Kingdom was the highlights of our trip.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  17. I am with the boys, Sea World is the best. Did Shamu wet you or the boys? When I went many many moons ago I made sure I was not to close for his trick.
    I feel the same as you but the boys will enjoy having those pictures later in life. So get Brandon on to takin a few photos.
    Peace

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  18. Mary,

    This post brings back so many memories - I haven't been to Sea World in many years. It looks like it's changed alot.

    Were the big sea turtles there?

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  19. Mary,

    Sea World looks like a lot of fun!! It's great being able to visit through the lens of your camera. What a terrific family photo. Brandon sure has gotten tall!!

    Aren't the AnheiserBusch horses spectacular. There is an Anheiser Busch beer facility in Merrimack, NH. Years ago we toured it. The horses are magnificent and very big!

    Thank you again for letting us tag along on your wonderful vacation. :-)

    Hugs,
    Tina

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