On May 23rd we "made tracks to a great destination", as Thomas the #1 Tank Engine would say. The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, about 30 min from us, was hosting "A Day Out with Thomas", and boy, was it a hit with Xavier and Ben.
Bennett looked forward to this day with great anticipation for a couple of weeks. I told him several times that we were all going to ride a train pulled by Thomas, and he kept saying, "Mommy, you and Daddy are way too big! Its only for kids like me and Xavier!" He was thinking it was a little train, like the kind they have at the mall during Christmastime. I had to keep reassuring him, that indeed, this was a very real, very big train, that even grown ups could ride on. He was a little dumbfounded by that.
As we pulled into the parking lot, Ben caught a glimpse of Thomas coming into the station, and he was awestruck. "THERE'S THOMAS! HOLY COW!" Nick and I were actually impressed too, it was for certain a convincing Thomas, not just a regular engine with a "makeover." Very cool.
Here's Ben waiting patiently as Sir Topham Hatt (the owner of the Railway on the Island of Sodor, where Thomas works) always advises.
Finally, Ben's favorite character pulled into the station.
Xavier had a great time on the trainride. He loved the motion of the train, and sat proudly by himself. After awhile, he wanted Nick and I to hold him up, so he could look out the window.
This is one of my all-time favorite photos I've shot of Ben. I think (if I do say so myself) it so perfectly captures his quiet thoughtfulness.
What's that? You think Xavier might need a haircut? Huh?! No, he couldn't possibly! HA! I love that you can almost feel how connected Nick and Xavier are by looking at this one:
The day may have begun with a trainride, but it certainly didn't end there. We visited a gift shop, storytelling, and tons of model train layouts. There were also lots of Thomas themed tracks for kids to play with and a giant Lego Thomas. Both boys got temporary tatoos. Xavier LOVES going to things like this. It always surprises us, how favorably he tolerates and even enjoys all the noise and commotion.
Xavier and Ben were especially fond of a train bell that was set low so that kids could ring it themselves. Let me tell you, this must have been a real train bell, because it was earsplitting loud, and I had to laugh at how both Ben and Xavier thought it was so awesome, because they have issues with loud noises at times. Whatever floats your boats boys! They both took turns pulling the cord and Ben really got some muscle into it at the end!
To top it off, there was a small petting zoo. I'll spare you all the pictures of the boys looking at all the usual animals, but I thought this one was so cute. I love when small kids bend over to get a closer look at things, for some reason, it just makes me smile.
Ben fell asleep within 2 minutes of driving off..obviously deeply content, wearing his new Thomas hat and clutching his new Thomas freight cars from the gift shop.
Travels with Aaron (as of Jan 2011)
6 years ago