Monday, October 31, 2011

Our Trip to Niagara Falls and Toronto

A few weeks ago our family took a five day trip to Niagara Falls and Toronto.  No particular reason, we just up and decided to go.  I am so glad we did!  The weather forecast was looking bad as we prepared for our trip, but we prayed and prayed that we would have one nice day at Niagara...and we did!  The first day we got there is started to rain not long afterwards, so we decided since we were already wet, we might as well get wetter!  We took the Cave of the Winds tour where you go down to the base of Bridal Veil Falls (the smallest of the Falls).  You're right there out in the water coming off the Falls and so it's quite powerful water...and pretty wet!  The boys went onto what's called the Hurricane Deck and got soaked.  They were thrilled. :)

Here are the boys at the top of the American Falls right after they got their first view

And on the overlook by the Canadian Horseshoe Falls

The day we arrived was our 9th Anniversary 10-12!

Here we are at the bottom of Cave of the Winds

On the Hurricane Deck.  Looks delightful, doesn't it?

We stayed both nights in a hotel on the Canadian side, so after getting sufficiently wet, we dried the kids off in the car, had some dinner and went over the boarder.  We were all so completely exhausted that *I* was ready to go to bed at 7pm!  I think I managed to hold out until 9, but our whole trip was like that...exhausting!

Thursday was a beautiful day.  Sunny and clear for most of the day and almost 70*.  Here's a beautiful view of parts of all three falls.  Since we went in October, the foliage was incredible, too.  It was hard to capture with my camera, but it was stunning.  

We took the Trolley all through the State Park.  That was a fun, pretty ride.  Our feet appreciated the rest, as well.

Getting ready to board "Maid of the Mist".  Andrew did not want to go on the boat.

At the base of the American Falls

Caleb and Joshua loved it, of course

When we started getting wet, Andrew was not a happy camper. "Get me off this boat!", he yelled!

There were rainbows everywhere.

Here we are lunching right by the top of the American Falls.  It's really quite amazing how close you can get!

Friday morning we drove up to Toronto, only about a two hour drive, even with heavy traffic going into the city.  We spent the day at the Ontario Science Center, where Andrew had a massive meltdown at lunch time. He was exhausted.  Need I say more?  A two hour nap in the car with Philip after lunch seemed to help.  Saturday, it was still cloudy and windy, but we decided since we were there, we would go ahead and go to the CN Tower.  This used to be the highest free standing building in the world, but there are now two higher ones.   I was concerned about paying so much money and not really being able to see much, but as it turns out, the horizon was clear enough that we were actually able to see across Lake Ontario to the city of Niagara Falls and even see the mist of the Falls.  Pretty amazing.  

The Tower includes a "Glass Floor".  Andrew thought it was pretty awesome.  The other boys were like "Let's get out of here,"

Andrew loved being up so high.  He kept saying "Let's to higher!"  This was as high as we were able to go, the Sky Pod about 300 feet above the first observation deck, and about 1465 ft up.  This is the level we could see Niagara Falls from, although we didn't know what we were looking for when we were lower, so it's possible it was visible from there, as well.

After our trip up the CN Tower, we got out of dodge, err....Toronto.  We headed down to Buffalo, NY to stay the night before heading home on Sunday.  Sadly, we realized when arriving in the Buffalo hotel that Joshua's beloved blanket was left in the bed in Toronto.  When I called the hotel, they said they had it and asked when I wanted to come pick it up.  Ummm....we live kind of a long way away, I explained.  They were unwilling to mail it or even box it up, so the situation looked pretty sad until a local friend found a friend who lives in Toronto and was willing to go rescue it for us.  It's been mailed and every time a package arrives, Joshua asks "Is that my bi-bi?"  We're still waiting, but hopefully those two will be reunited soon!

We were thoroughly unimpressed with Buffalo, but the boys were happy to get to visit a second Great Lake, Erie.  It was unbelievably windy and cold that morning, so Andrew and I stayed in the car while the others braved the elements to get close to the Lake.  Here they are on a seawall right by the shore.

And here's the boys right before all three of them went over the wall and got slammed with a massive, freezing cold wave from the lake!  They got soaked!  Fortunately we had almost enough clean, dry clothes left to get them changed.  I say almost because Caleb wound up in recycled socks. :)  But hey, what a story!  Soaked at Lake Erie!  

So, it was a wonderful trip and we're wondering where else we can go next time we get a hankerin' to travel.   Lots of options, I am sure. 

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