Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sophie's Bday Weekend

My Sophie-So turned the big S-E-V-E-N this weekend.  Where does the time go? She certainly doesn't LOOK seven, (she still wears a size 5) but when I count the years from when she was born...well, definitely has been seven years. Before I get all sentimental and start bawling via blog post, let me tell you folks about her celebration.

Unfortunately, the fam has not been here long enough to warrant a big enough guest list for the Pinkalicious party she wanted thrown in her honor.  BUT, we found an alternate option to make this princess feel extra true Sophie style.

Instead of tutus and tiaras, we scored discount tickets via the base ticket and tours office to a 4-hr Wildlife Watching Cruise off Seward, AK.
We boarded the Orca Song, a boat seating 150 pax, and headed off into Resurrection Bay.

They provided complimentary Nikon binoculars for our use, but we really didn't need it since we always got close enough to whatever we wanted to see. Five minutes from pushing off the dock, our first encounter was with a big fat cutie patootie of a sea otter, floating on its back and basking in his celebrity status. Sorry no pics...we were still unprepared and settling in when the captain announced Mr. Sea Otter's presence.

The Dall porpoises were my personal favorite. They look like baby orcas There were several pods within the bay and all of them were playful, chasing boats and jumping out of the water.
This time of year signals the annual migration of California gray whales up into Alaskan waters.  We found one. This is a very brief shot of it, you can see it spout air and dive down. We were all too enthralled at the sight, the camera was pulled out a bit late.

This is the same one, we couldn't figure if it was just one or two, but you'll see it spout off water a couple times.

Right past Fox Island, there was a rock completely covered with sea lions! Awesome!

And then, the boat rocked a lot, and Sophia and Dylan's propensity for seasickness made itself known.  LOL.  Kudos to Major Marine Tours for having Dramamine for Kids! Fortunately, none of my kids hurled into the sick bags.  Unfortunately, the medication knocked them out for a full hour.

Back on land, we checked into our hotel (Sea Breeze Inn) literally across the street from the harbor.  We lucked out that a party canxd their reservation at Ray's Waterfront, and so we were seated with a harborview table for Sophie's bday dinner.

A 50 dollar (yes, five-oh) entree for her....she finished all but half a leg of her 1.5 lb order of king crab legs. Baby girl WENT--TO--TOWN with her crab! AND, she had a strawberry sundae aftewards. You all know how small she is...where does it all go???
A walk out on the rock beach at Resurrection campground helped her walk it off.

Skipping rocks has become an ultimate Fam Och activity.

The next day, we took a trip down to the Alaska Sealife Center, a local aquarium with loads on great info and hands-on activities for the kids.  We then headed back home, a two-hour beautiful drive through the most gorgeous scenery.

The Mister and I knew we did right when Sophie sighed, "This is the best birthday EVER!"

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