...the MALL of Americans, that is.
When we went to Minnesota, it quickly became apparent that the four adults in the group were not savvy to the mystery of the Great Mall of America. There is a giant kid-themed amusement park in the center of the mall. At least we thought there was. The interweb suggested it was so. But we were woefully ignorant. Russ had never been. I hadn't been since high school. And, as Uncle Jake aptly put it, "I can get you to Nordstrom Rack. Other than that...we're pretty much on the same page." Apparently, we are bad Americans. We have neglected the mecca of consumerism (though I would have been QUITE WILLING to make up for lost time).
So we decided to brave it, assuming a Friday night would be slightly less busy.
Despite being able to see a 20 foot tall Dora from the food court (terrifying), Vivi was not sure she believed Uncle Jake.
"Buddy, there are no rides in here."
However, she was quite wrong. Not only were there rides, they were, for the most part, Nickelodeon themed rides, which meant she got to hang out with all of her favorite buddies.
She got to ride in the Wonderpets Fly Boat.
She and Aunt Becky zoomed around in the Swiper Cars (which went surprisingly fast for a child's ride).
Love, love, love this picture.
We all rode together on the Dora ferris wheel, which was actually three stories tall and pretty cool.
She and I drove Diego's bus to "save some jungle animals!"
And, for the most awesome experience of the entire mall, Russ took her on the carousel, and she got to ride...
...a dragon. She was SO SO excited for this. We had to wait in line for the carousel, and she spotted it right away. There was no dissuading her. I think she would have fought any other child for that dragon. It was hers. And, as Hiccup tells us, "Vikings have stubbornness issues." It pretty much made her day. And, to cap it all off, Aunt Becky and Uncle Jake knew of a restaurant which not only had some of the best adult food I've ever had, but they had for-real Mac'n'Cheese that rivaled that of Fireworks here in Lincoln. All in all, not a bad day for everyone. Even if we are bad Americans.