Friday, December 3, 2010

Carolina Christmas

This year, the Charlotte Motor Speedway is home to A Carolina Christmas, which is one of the largest drive through light displays in the country.  We got to visit it as special VIP's on opening night, where we watched them give away a ton of money to the Speedway Children's Charities (like Levine's Children's Hospital, where Chase spent his first month of life), and were privy to seeing Santa arrive directly from the North Pole...on a zip line...wrapped in LED lights.  The kids loved it :)

We walked through the village of Bethlehem, saw the live nativity scene (where Chase tried to scale the wall and actually join Jesus, Mary, and Joseph...), and collected all the hay we could handle while Chase dragged his hands on the ground in protest to being put into the stroller...*sigh*  No pictures of that one, because, well, I had my hands full.

We then went to the garages, where there was a display of over thirty beautifully decorated trees and some awesome race cars, Santa's workshop (where Ian and a helper elf built a cool wooden race car and garage!), and visited Santa (the real one!!).  I know he was real, because my 3 boys, you know, the ones who are afraid of the pretend Santas?  Those boys all went up on their own volition and talked to St Nicholas himself.  And CHASE led the charge.  Believe it.  Then, when we were done, Chase spent the next 5 minutes waving and saying goodbye to him from afar.

Again, no great pictures...of course.  But I offer you these poorly taken ones.
The real Santa:
 He told Ian he would see what he could do about a DS.
 Guy was unsure until he saw that the man with the beard was giving out candy canes.

Handy Ian

Chase may or may not have been extremely tired at this point, as evidenced in his choice to lay underneath the work bench and his refusal to come out unless I dragged him by his armpits.

 The Christmas trees were a big hit. 
 And we managed to look at them and even touch with our gentle hands (most of the time)...
 ...and got out of there without breaking a single ornament!  The snow underneath the trees...well that is another story...

We stopped at the carnival outside, where Ian rode the giant slide- that is him with the demon eyes and sheer terror painted on his face- (and I thankfully did not have to go on it!) 
 and the teacups with the Larsen girls (again, thankful.)

We visited the ice skating rink next- would have loved to skate with Ian, but it wasn't really possible to do with all 3 of them...and the Speedway people frown on tying your small children up to the nearest post while you go off and do the fun stuff without them.

BUT we ALL partook in the marshmallow pits!  They had giant bonfires going outside, and little packages of s'mores fixings to make.  Ian was so adorable roasting his marshmallow that News Channel 36 came over, put a spotlight on him, and filmed him.  Then they interviewed me; I sounded like a total dork, and they put it on the 11 o'clock news, and you can view it here.  Awesome.
 Hey!  Why does he have a marshmallow and I don't?
 Deer in the headlights meets delicious confection:
We rounded out the evening with a quiet moment to listen to an awesome chorus singing "The First Noel" and a bouncy version of "Jingle Bells"- both of which Chase attempted to sing along to.  (And Ian did, too, though he'd never admit it.)

After all was said and done, I had three very very tired boys who stayed awake just long enough to make the drive around the entire Speedway track to look at the awesome light displays.  Chase kept pointing to them and saying, "Oh!  Oh!!  Lights!"  like he was surprised every time there was a new display around each corner.  I tried to take some photos...again, they are terrible.  But I took them without driving off the road, so I am quite proud of that.

Oh.  And then I got lost on the way home, drove for an hour and ended up BACK at the dang Speedway, drove around some more, ended up at a McDonald's in a shady part of town...drove around some MORE, ended up in the same place that I thought I was lost in before, but it ended up actually being the right way home, and then- finally- made it home, transferred the boys to bed, and dreams of sugar plum fairies danced in my head...or something like that :)


Ashley @ Carolina Couponer said...

I enjoyed reading about your trip to Carolina Christmas :)

carydip said...

Cute. Your famous on the news! Where, oh where was Bryan?? ~Mom

Laurie said...

He was working late and had a DADS meeting...