Our Kids' Blog

Dollywood Girls

July 3rd, 2013 by Mommy


We are enjoying visiting Dollywood this year. Julia is taller this year and we have found that she is tall enough to ride all the rides she has an interest in riding. No big roller coasters yet. While Emily is tall enough to ride some of the bigger coasters, she is NOT interested in riding them. Both girls have been brave and tried new rides. They really enjoyed the bumper cars, but it is only fun when both parents are there. The days at Dollywood have been great ones, even the one that rained us out!

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Julia and the Helicopter

January 9th, 2012 by Mommy


Julia is our transportation girl. If there is a train or plane near us, she is pointing it out to us. On our last day at Dollywood, she found a helicopter in the sky over the park. After pointing it out to Mama, Mama thought it would be a good idea to let her practice saying the word. I said it slowly, in my own southern accent, and broken into syllables “say He-lo-cop-ter”. Did she repeat the word? No, she turned and looked back up at it and waved. She had heard me tell her to “say hello (to the) copter”.

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Last Dollywood Trip of the Year

January 7th, 2012 by Mommy

We made our final trip of the year to Dollywood the week after Christmas. We arrived an hour after they opened for the morning and they were already filling up parking lot F. Wow, it was busy. Luckily for us the lines were for things the kids aren’t ready for. Maybe we would have caught a show, but we didn’t even try. The day was cool, but comfortable. When the evening cool came we had plenty of warm clothes and blankets to bundle up in to stay warm. We did the girls favorite rides and activities: car driving, carousel, pig, duck, bumble bee, playgrounds, and rope course. We got our funnel cake to share too.

Emily took her nap on the way to the park, but Julia was stubborn and stayed awake. Well, she only made it so long and then fell asleep in the stroller. When we said goodbye to the sun she got wrapped up in a blanket.

We stayed until after dark so that Emily could see all of the lights and see the lights show. She loved it! I’m so glad we got to go so many times this year and enjoyed being together.


We didn’t get many photos of them awake together, but once one goes to sleep it get a bit easier. We are bundled up to stay warm!


Julia got so excited while driving! She was thrilled to get a pink car to drive.


One sacrifice of the park being so busy is that the girls had to share a seat with each other and sharing the rides with other kids. Sometimes they loved it and sometimes it was a bit frustrating for them. They seemed to connect with these girls and they loved the ride.

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Dollywood with Friends

September 2nd, 2011 by Mommy

The girls and Mama joined our friends for a trip to Dollywood. We did some of our usual rides, but we also rode the train together. Julia rode the train on my lap and put her hands over her ears every time they blew the whistle. We all took turns riding the flying elephant because all the girls wanted to ride, but they can’t ride by themselves yet.

Elena wanted to ride the Veggie Tale kids roller coaster. We asked Emily if she wanted to ride too and she said no. Julia piped up and wanted to go. It was her first roller coaster ride. Julia and Elena rode together. So cute!

We made a full day of the park while Ashley and the girls left just before naptime. Julia fit her nap in between activities. She woke up just as we were getting a snack. We enjoyed our day together.


The big girls enjoying their duck ride


Emily on her favorite ride. She plans on doing this ride in the car every time we get to Dollywood.


Emily driving the yellow beauty.


Julia driving the blue car with Mama.


Julia on her unusual horse. Do you see Maeve in the background on the bench? She wasn’t interested in riding a horse this particular day.


The little girls enjoying their duck ride. I love their faces.



Julia sacked out mid-Dollywood trip

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Our First Trip to Dollywood for the Year

May 11th, 2011 by Mommy

To my girls delight, we took our first trip to Dollywood for the year. There were so many delightful things to enjoy.

1. Going with your best friends. This year Ashley, Elena, and Maeve got tickets too and we made the day trip together. The first thing the girls asked when I told them we were going to Dollywood was if their friends were going too. I didn’t deny or confirm, but surprised them when we met their friends to drive over.

2. Emily got her own ticket. I’m not so excited about this as she was. She is proud of her pass and photo, proud to put the ticket in the machine, proud to walk through the turnstile by herself, and proud to show off her pass to her Daddy. I wish my photo was as good as hers was. She should be proud.

3. Emily has grown since last year. This year Emily is tall enough to drive a car all by herself. She thinks that it is awesome!

4. Peer pressure is not always bad. Emily was willing to try a bunch of things this year that she was afraid of last year. She was still hesitant, but not willing to let Elena do something without her. Thank you, Elena.

5. When we run out of steam, we run out of steam. While we waited to drive the cars one last time, Julia asked for me to hold her. Then she started to give me hugs. Next she laid her head on my shoulder. Lastly, Emily drove her car while Julia slept in my arms.

6. Having season tickets means we can go back.


Sharing a ride around the carousel.


The big girl driving all by herself!


The little one doing her share of driving. She loved driving until she realized there was a horn on Mommy’s side. Then there was conflict over what to do next.


I love the smile on Emily. The carousel is her favorite ride in the park.


Julia still seems little on the big horse. She waved at all the people as we went around like she was a princess in a parade. She even blew kisses out to people who waved back.


Emily was delighted to ride with Maeve on the duck ride. See our pink cheeks – the day was pretty warm for early May.


Happy Julia and her famous wave.


Julia flying around with her friend Maeve. Maeve was missing her Mama who was with the big kids on a roller coaster.


One really tired girl! She slept through a snack and the walk to the car and then played all the way home. Emily fell asleep shortly after we left the and slept all the way home.

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Dollywood at Christmas

December 30th, 2010 by Mommy

The girls and Mama visited Dollywood just before Christmas. It was a cold day, but we were bundled up and seemed to always have one more layer we could put on. Like usual the girls wanted to ride the carousel first. You have to hold tight when you are wearing mittens.

We then continued on to ride the young kid rides. Emily loves to make friends with other kids when we are at parks, and this trip to Dollywood was no different. She and a six-year old became best friends on the first ride. Emily cried when we got to the second ride because her new friend wasn’t riding in the same pig. She moved to join us. But it didn’t matter how good friends they were, nothing could get Emily to ride the bumblebee ride. On the other hand, Julia was thrilled to ride the bumblebee ride. They said good-bye to their new friend as she went on to ride the bigger rides. While Emily was unwilling to ride the flying bumblebee, she requested to try the Ferris wheel. I’m not sure that she would really be able to handle it, it will have to wait for a day with Daddy.

The girls discovered a mural wall that they could color. It was a blast and will be inspiring our own at-home version. Mama isn’t going nuts, but I’m going to give it a try and hope all the walls in our house don’t turn into murals.

We have been visiting Dollywood for months now and have never gone to a show. Between the cold weather, more kid-interesting shows, and a desire to take off some of our layers encouraged us that direction. We saw “Babies in Toyland” and found it to hold the girls interest. An hour was a long time for them, but it was fun.

We hope to go back one more time with Daddy before the year ends for more fun!

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