We had a lazy day on Wednesday, which was perfect after two days of traveling with disrupted sleep schedules. We spent the morning at John Pennekamp State Park beach. This state park is known for excellent snorkeling, but we didn't do that. I wonder how old kids need to be before you can teach them to snorkel? We had hoped to do a glass bottom boat ride, but all the trips were three hours long, and we thought that might be a little long for Megan (who, at 20 months, doesn't like to sit still for a long time) and Amelia (who took a long time to warm up to the ferry ride when we were in Door County.) So we hung out at the beach all morning. The sand wasn't very nice, kind of gravelly, so we didn't get out the sand toys. Instead, we splashed and played in the water. It was pretty quiet at first, just us and a German family, but when we left just before lunch, it was a lot more crowded.
After the beach, we went to the visitors center to check out their aquarium. The girls loved to walk around the aquarium following the rainbow fish. We also saw a spiny lobster, which Megan liked. The small tanks were high off the ground, so we had to hold the girls up to see those. Megan got mad when we had to put her down! I guess we didn't bring the camera, because I don't have any photos of the aquarium.
That afternoon, Ben took a long nap, so the girls and I went down to the pool. The condo had a kiddie pool that was about 2 feet deep, so it was great for Amelia. Megan could stand at the edges only, so I had to hold on to her most of the time. There were other kids there who had brought pool toys, and they were nice enough to share with us. Amelia LOVED the pool toys, they made her a lot more confident in the water.
Megan particularly liked the dolphin toy, although she thought it was a shark. She even learned how to say shark on the trip. "SHA!" Her favorite part of the pool was climbing up and down the steps. In the photo below, she is splashing on the steps. Amelia thought that looked like fun, so she joined Megan:
A very nice older Irish man came over and introduced himself to us and chatted for a while. He brought Amelia a set of water wings, and she thought they were great fun. It was nice to get to chat to a local, who said that the worst thing about living in the Keys were tornados! I would have guessed hurricanes would be worse, and he said that sometimes they would have as many as seven hurricanes in a single season, but I guess you just get used to those if you live in the Keys. He offered to take our photo, so here's one of the few photos of me on the trip (and amazingly, everyone is smiling!):