From March 26-
Our original plan was to spend Monday at Dollywood, but since Abbi had passed out so early on Sunday we didn’t want to spend the million dollars Dollywood costs and have her not be able to enjoy it or be her best, so we swapped some of our planned Tuesday activities for Monday and let her sleep in a bit.
She woke up feeling a lot better and starting to eat some. Our first stop was the Muse Children’s Museum. We got in free with our Adventure Science membership, which was about the best part of the thing. Overall it was all of our least favorite thing of the trip. It was really small, super crowded with young kids, and it just didn’t have a lot to do. And did I mention crowded with young kids??
They had a few older Science type things for older kids and Lilli pretty much camped out over there.
One of the air/butterfly things at the end.
They also closed at noon and at about 11:30 the staff spent the entire time picking up everything a child had touched about three seconds after they set it down. So if Abbi put down her mustard to turn around and get an apple – the mustard was gone. It was pretty ridiculous. And afterwards I felt we all needed a good hose down with Purrell.
From there we headed towards Ijams Nature Center. We’d wanted lunch but didn’t run across anything on the way, so we promised them heavy trail snacks and then we’d eat lunch. We hit the Nature Center first and they loved all the turtles and other fish inside.
We talked to the host and she gave us a good trail for kids to follow so we set out for a few miles to hike next to the river.
Abbi was pretty excited to pose for pictures.
I think she keeps making these crazy faces because she can see how much we all laugh and she just loves the attention.
The walk was really pretty next to the River and all the rocks and things starting to grow and bloom.
The walk got into a hillier, rockier landscape. It seemed very “East TN” to us.
Such pretty views. From here it did level out. I think we went about 2-3 miles on this trail.
Afterwards we let them play for a while in the outdoor kids area. They had all kinds of natural play spaces for them to climb, play, dig and be creative.
They loved this little playhouse.
From there we all wanted Mexican food so we found a little local spot and ordered a really late lunch/early dinner. We were all enjoying chips and queso and our food had just came when Abbi looked at me and said she needed to throw up. So I ran her to the bathroom and she lost it all. Sigh. The rest of us quickly ate and went back to the room and she rested for a few hours. Brent took Lilli to the McKays bookstore near our hotel room and they did some shopping while I relaxed with Abbi. She napped and I watched HGTV and did Soduko. Not a terrible way to spend an evening.
After her nap she was feeling good and we all wanted a little bit of snack so she and Brent went out to Starbucks and Krispy Kreme for some treats. At least she was feeling better and wanted to get out. Poor thing never even got to go swimming in the hotel pool – and I’d picked that hotel because it was one of just a few that had an indoor pool.