We Are So Blessed!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

We Spent a "Day Out With Thomas"!!

This is from last November (11/2010):

Oh man was this a treat for Maletch!! As everyone knows, Maletch is a HUGE 'Thomas the Train' fan, and so when I found out they had a "Day Out with Thomas" event- I was ALL over it! It turns out that they only have ONE Thomas (it is a real train that drives on real railroad tracks) and is an exact replica of Thomas. Since there is only one, they travel the country and stay about 10 days in each city. So when I looked into it originally (thinking it would be a cool birthday idea) they happened to be back east someplace, and wouldn't be here until November (the closest location to us was Perris, CA) so I bought tickets about 6 months in advance and we couldn't wait to go. Even though it wasn't going to be a birthday deal, we decided to still make it a surprise to make it more fun! I also surprised my dad and Denise with tickets, since I knew it would mean so much to them to experience it with him. Thankfully they live close enough and were able to make it!
It was held at the Orange Empire Railway Museum, which is a cool place all by itself- having many antique trains that still work, and offering rides with reasonable ticket prices- something we will most likely be doing in the future.

Anyway, back to our 'Day Out with Thomas':
They had so many areas at this huge place set up for kids, they had:
* A store that was filled with EXCLUSIVE Thomas merchandise (exclusive to event-goers only, not available in any store)- which I took well advantage of buying scrapbooking supplies, clothing, picture frames, toys, and more!
* Movie watching room, where kids could watch movies (Thomas films of course) being played on a huge screen TV
* A ginormous play area with every type of Thomas track and so many train tables and trains that you can imagine
* A couple of huge Bouncy House Castles
* Petting zoo
* Meet Sir Topham Hatt area with photo op
* Tattoo Station
* Story Telling & Live Music areas for entertainment
* Arts & Crafts station
* Photo ops with Thomas (in between passenger trips)
* Additionally, there were all of the museum things to see and there were plenty of trains that the kids were allowed to climb on: some antique trains/cabooses and they also had several neat wooden trains (not real) that were meant for kids to climb on.

All of these activities made this an all-day event. When we purchased tickets, we had to choose a Departure time out of the many trips Thomas would make throughout the day. I chose one of the later times, and we had plenty to do while we waited to board Thomas for our 25 minute train ride.

Maletch loves to tell the "Train Station Story" and he tells it everyday, or he asks me "Mommy, can you tell me the train station story again?" Often times he wants to tell it over and over (many times in a row).

This is how the story goes when Maletch tells it (these are ALL his words verbatim):
"Mommy and Daddy took Maletch in the car but they didn't tell him where we were going. I said, mommy where are we going, and she said, I can't tell you it's a surprise. Then Maletch fell asleep in the car and mommy said, wake up Maletch, we are here. I said, where are we mommy? She said, it's a surprise. Right then, a train whistled, I said, I hear a train mommy. Mommy said, yes you do, take a look out the window and see who it is. It's Thomas, it's Thomas! Mommy said, yes it's Thomas, it's REAL Thomas, and guess what? We get to ride on real Thomas! I said, No way really? Mommy said, Yes we do. I said, Can we go? Let's go! Then we got to ride on the coaches Annie and Clarabel and Thomas pulled us forwards and backwards. Grandma and Grandpa came too. We also got to meet Sir Topham Hatt and Sir Topham Hatt said, what's your name, and I said Maletch. He said, nice to meet you, and I shook his hand. We took a picture with Sir Topham Hatt. I got a Thomas tattoo too and mommy gave me a Thomas whistle surprise. Let's see, what else did we do? Oh yeah, I also got Shake n' Go Thomas and Day out with Thomas toys at the train station store."
Maletch is quite the story teller, and he is 100% correct in his version, and it is almost the same way I tell it to him. The only thing that he doesn't know is that John and I teared up seeing his initial excitement and reaction. It was awesome, and the look on his face and the excitement he had is something I will never forget!

Needless to say, he has been asking when we can go see Thomas again. I wish we could do this more than once a year, but that is the only time they are in our area. If you ask Maletch about this, in addition to the story, he will tell you that, "Thomas is coming from the Island of Sodor to California in November."
He also adds, "First it will be Halloween, THEN Thomas." And yes that is all true, that is where Thomas lives, and he will be here in November, so Yay- that is only next month now!! I hope my dad and Denise can come again, Maletch has been asking about that! I really hope we can make this an annual tradition (until Maletch looses interest in Thomas). I suspect he will 'be into' Thomas longer than most, since we have such an elaborate train set-up.

I have SO many pics and videos from that day- scroll down to see the slide show and videos. In the last video, you will see Maletch 'watch' one kid high-five another kid, and he wanted a high-five too, but he was too late.
... oh and of course be watching for our new adventures with Thomas next month! Hard to believe that last time I was 3 months pregnant with Sariah (so technically she went too, LOL) but this time she will get to see it for herself!

**Don't forget to pause the music player (at the bottom of the blog) before you play the video clips (or the sounds will be battling). The pause button is towards the top left corner of the music player, the same button can start the music again if you wish.

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