We did out little Family trip ... negotiated as "birthday celebration" with Daughter #1 ... and it turned out OK. We rented a car (got a great deal at $25/day), and drove up to the Wisconsin Dells ... now, I'd not been up to the Dells in about 30 years, back then it was pretty much just Tommy Bartlett's Watershow, a few Nature things, a bunch of motels with pools, and fudge ... however, the Dells has grown into a huge sprawling mass of kitch ... MOST of which is closed for the winter. However, the Dells also boasts "The World's Largest Indoor Water Park" (soon to be two of them vying for that title) which is open year-round, and it sounded like a good mid-winter escape.
The "Bay Of Dreams" waterpark is part of the huge "FamilyLand" park, but the only part that's open in the winter ... it's themed like a Mayan Jungle, and is pretty amusing on that level ... what's great is that if you stay at the Treasure Island hotel, you get all the FamilyLand activities for free ... which is saying something, since the per-person cost for Bay of Dreams is like $20/day ... so we would have had to shell out around $240 for just that ... and the whole shebang (well, minus food) ran $250.00 for two nites in a nice mini-suite with three-day access to all the pools (i.e., even though we had to check out by 11am, we could have kept playing until closing time).
A reasonably good time was had by all. The "birthday girl" was a bit pissy to start as she wanted to get right to the pools, but by the time we got up there on Friday (it ran closer to a five hour drive and the 3.5 the maps suggest) and had some dinner, she was the ONLY person not voting for bed. Of course, Daughter #2, being shy of 3 years, had her melt-downs too, and The Wife got cranky from the chaos. Me, I was just unable to get any work done. No poems, no shcool reading, no school exercises, nada. What I did achieve was two relatively solid nights of sleep, getting about as much sleep in two nights as I would typically get over five or six at home!
Anyway, if anybody was wondering if I'd fallen off the face of the earth ... that's where I've been not posting from.