Related Posts with Thumbnails


cute little blondie who's comfortable in front of a crowd,

loves animals,

has a birthday coming up in 3 days,

and who's outfit matches the color of her eyes.









How cool is that!

Yes, that is Arissa up there on the big screen, smilin' and doin' her thang in front of a few hundred people in Shamu Stadium.

No, the face of the boy on the left isn't horribly's just how my cute little out-dated camera captured the tv image. :o)

The story:

My aunt, uncle & cousins are visiting from Utah, so the cousins (family of 5, see cute photos in previous post) and us (that's a total of 10!) went to Sea World for the day.

We had so much fun! Since we have passes and can go any time we want, we usually just go for an hour or two. We usually don't see any of the shows. We usually just go to the same spots and enjoy the cool air. But seeing it through the eyes of a "tourist" was different and lots of fun. And the girls were happy just to be hanging out with their cousins, no matter where they were!

Can't ever pass up a chance to pet the bat rays:

(or in the case of my kids: get real excited about petting them but yank your hand out of the water whenever they get close enough). I also bought fish and fed them, which we usually don't do. Of course, I bought the fish for the girls to feed them but they weren't havin' it. So I put on a brave face & prentended not to be grossed out and did it.)

We watched and fed these guys:


We watched a pearl being taken from an oyster:


Mariah siezed the opportunity while her 7th month old baby cousin was out of her stoller & being fed, and jumped in and fell asleep:


Then, lastly, we headed over to Shamu Stadium.

A nice lady in a very un-flattering wet suit with the markings of Shamu walked up to Arissa and asked her if she'd like to be in the show.

Simple as that.

Arissa practiced her "lines" a few times.

Her "line" was:


But it had to be said with the right amount of wonder and enthusiasm! :o)

Arissa being in the show really worked out for the rest of us.... especially our family from out of town because instead of clamoring for spare seats in the nose-bleed section, we got special VIP seating in....

....the soak zone.

Upside about that: incredibly close-up views of the amazing animals!

Downside about that: trying to take photos & video of Arissa's debut as an honorary whale trainer, while keeping an eye on 4 killer whales at once to make sure we could tuck the cameras away when they splashed.

Amazingly, we stayed dry! Go figure. :o)

No camera castastrophes.

Plenty of pics to save and remember.


Here's Arissa saying that "line" she practiced:

Trainer Mike: "Arissa, I hear you want to be a dancer when you grow up, is that true?"

Arissa: {Nods head, smiles}

Trainer Mike: "Well I'm sure you will be a dancer, because you can do anything you want to, as long as you believe! {music, cheers from the crowd} Now Arissa, who'd you come here to see today?"

Arissa: "Shamu!"

Trainer Mike: "Well..... Shamu would love to meet you! Come on, let's go. I'll introduce you."


Then Arissa followed him down to the front of the tank, where Shamu (unbelievably huge in comparison to Arissa) swam up to her. Arissa leaned up and kissed him through the glass, just like on the commercials. :o) I held back a tear.

Then she waived at him, and he waived back. She turned around, and he flipped over. She pretened to splash with her hand, he splashed the crowd.


Arissa and the trainer went back up to the "stage" area, and she and trainer Mike got the crowd to clap their hands to the music while Shamu swam around some more and flipped and splashed. Then Daddy, Mama, and baby Shamu swam up on the platform thing to end the show.

I cheered for Shamu and I cheered louder for Arissa. :o)

Trainer Mike gave Arissa a whale's tail necklace, just like he was wearing, and he wrote a little message about believing in your dreams, and signed it.

Too cute.

Here's Arissa & cousin/BFF Cami after the show:


The whole gang (minus the sweet lil 7-month-old who's stroller Mariah over-took earlier):


Since we have passes, we never EVER buy those pictures that the park employees take of you and then let you view/purchase later.

But they did take some of Arissa and her experience, and I surely wanted those.

We viewed them and Jesse had his credit card out, ready to buy one picture and the Sea World frame it would come with, but then I realized that the shots they got weren't much different or better than the ones I took.

So we left 'em be, and bought a real cute "Shamu" frame instead (cuter than the one they were trying to sell me with the photo....and for $10 less), printed out one of my photos, and voila:


Such a fun day. The girls were contented to just be with their cousins, the fact that we were at sea world ended up just being an added bonus!


Related Posts with Thumbnails