Niagara Falls 2013

Let’s travel back in time, shall we? Picture this, end of June. Last day of school and we pack up for a week in Buffalo. Just me and the kids. Something very special is about to happen. We are meeting up with a lost friend of mine. We haven’t seen her in years. She’s since changed professions and states often. She is no longer a zookeeper either but still has it in her heart. She’s also a Mommy! My friend Teresa and her daughter Elizabeth traveled all the way from Sioux Falls, South Dakota to meet Zia and Gilmour.

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I have a natural fear of heights and EVERY time I visit Niagara Falls, I just fear someone is going to fall over. They can stand back of the railing and I still see someone being swept over the edge. But I love this place. I’ve never seen another Wonder of the World and this place is a tourist trap (don’t even ask how much got spent on hot dogs and water) but I love to go spend time here.

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It’s been quite awhile since we last visited Niagara Falls and Zia didn’t remember it so this was a good experience for her. I was pretty sad that Jimmy stayed home to work.

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Sonyea was pretty amazed by the place and seemed to really enjoy herself. I love that we have such a great place so close by.

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Zia was pretty exhausted. At this point we had done some walking. We should have brought the stroller for her. Her little legs did really great keeping up though and we weren’t in any hurry. She isn’t much for smiling for the camera anymore.  When in Buffalo, the girls stay up way too late at night and get up way too early in the morning so she was a great trooper!

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It was just a little bit windy out and this is how Gilmour spent much of our time there.  With all the crying he has done on our travels, it’s nice to have some quiet while out.
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This is one of my scariest spots. After a short walk down some stairs and over a bridge, you get to the Bridal Vail Falls, found between the Horseshoe Falls and the American Falls. Just a little bit of area of water around a decent size island. You can look directly over the edge and down to the bottom. Always freaks me out to see my loved ones here. Way back when Jessica was little and now my kids… yea, I’ve got the shivers all over again.

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This might be one of my new favorites of Sonyea. I wish Zia would have stood with her.

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We decided we were going to ride the Maid of the Mist.  We had to get special permission by Jimmy and it was so totally worth it.  He was a lot nervous about his family getting so close to the falls, but everything was just wonderful and we all had a great time.  2013-06-23 14.16.16 2013-06-23 14.17.25 2013-06-23 14.18.56 2013-06-23 14.19.06 2013-06-23 14.28.19

Gilmour got his own raincoat but the guide at the bottom of the elevator said it was going to be easier to keep him in the front carrier and just put my coat over him.  It worked wonders.  I didn’t get as many photos/videos as I would have liked but I risked my phone getting wet as it was, I wasn’t about to pull out my expensive camera.  We hung out at the back of the Maid of the Mist because there were a lot of people up front and I didn’t want to lose the girls.  Teresa and Elizabeth went up where they could and there was a ton of room in the back so we hung out there.  We got soaked when we got up close.  It was awesome.  We got a little wet at first but as we got closer and closer it just kept coming at us.  We huddled in a circle with G in the middle and since he had his hat on, he stayed dry under the cover of us all.  All the while we were just laughing and laughing.

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Where we parked, and where the Maid of the Mist was located was really just a short walk but with the kids, we decided to take the Trolley. It wasn’t nearly as expensive as everything else and the girls seemed to enjoy the trip. We got some history on the Falls and the many islands leading up to it. It was a nice little trip while resting our feet and G took another decent nap.

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Those last two photos were taken on the edge of the tower that houses the elevator to the bottom of the gorge. It takes you down to the Maid of the Mist and has an observation deck over the river. Me and the girls did not go that way. We opted (read, *I* opted) to walk out while Teresa went to take some photos.

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Zia seemed to really enjoy the trolley ride.

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And what else do you do when you see a pay phone? But call your friends and Daddy and tell him what you just did. (we didn’t really make the call on the pay phone, we used our cell)

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