Thursday, December 22, 2016

Fun in Fort Lauderdale

In May I had the honor of Skyping into The Today Show and being the fan of the week during Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb's hour.  I answered their question correctly and won a trip for 2 to Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Scott and I wanted to wait until mid-west winter weather was upon us before we traveled south for a little fun in the sun!
Sun down wheels up
We settled on a post-Thanksgiving, Pre-Christmas vacation.  The kids were under the care of their grandparents and Scott and I drove to Nashville to catch our flight.  It was an evening flight that allowed us to watch the sunset while the twinkling lights of the cities below to come to life.
We drove to our hotel, the Fort Lauderdale Mattiott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa.  Christmas lights illuminated the palm trees and we could hear the roar of the ocean as we walked inside to check-in.  The staff was incredibly friendly and upgraded us to a room with an enormous balcony!
Good Morning
The next morning we headed to the Everglades to take an airboat ride and visit with gators.  As we walked along the boardwalk to climb into the airboat, a baby alligator poked his head out of the water.  It was so little and cute!

Aboard the boat we had a knowledgeable guide that discussed the ecosystem and delivered fun facts as we flew across that glassy water.  It was a smooth ride and I was excited when he said he saw something and was going to get us in for a closer look.

Sure enough, a pair of eyes watched our boat creep closer. I was a little nervous and scooted to the other side of the boat, but he didn't seem interested in investigating the boat or its inhabitants.

He was the only big gator we saw out in the water but back at the dock we were able to see gators in exhibits as they were being rehabilitated for one reason or another.  It was a very neat experience and I was so glad we went!

Another cool experience was visiting Xtreme Action Park.  Scott enjoyed racing (and taking 1st place) around the go-kart track while I enjoyed the ropes course and finding my inner American Ninja Warrior.

Our afternoon were spent relaxing in lounge chairs close to the pool and enjoying a good book.  I don't think Scott and I have both lost ourselves in a good book, while on vacation since we were on our honeymoon!

Our hotel was right on the beach and a few different evenings we walked down to the ocean and let the chilly water touch our toes as we buried our heels in the warm sand.  We enjoyed fresh seafood daily washed down by frozen fruity beverages (fruity for me, beer for Scott).  We soaked up the sunshine and relished in days without schedules or plans.
The weekend arrived and it was time to pack our bags and return to our babies.  Leaving the warm Florida sun wasn't so hard to do, we were ready to snuggle our kids.  Thank you again to The Today Show and the fabulous KLG and Hoda for allowing us to take this trip!  It was the perfect getaway.

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