Monday, July 26, 2010

Certified Aqua Tot ~ Estuary Lagoon

Our brave little girl got to participate in an adventure of a lifetime when we were on vacation in the Bahamas. The Atlantis chooses 5 kids randomly a week to go behind the scenes in an Estuary Lagoon that is located on property. It is a random drawing and if you are chosen they call your room and leave a message on your phone. Emma was chosen the day before we left to participate in a feeding of stingrays, star fish and conch. You were only eligible to participate if you were less than 48 inches & potty trained.

After going through orientation and learning how to do the sting ray shuffle the kids were invited to enter the water. Emma was the youngest of the four and was the first to enter the water. The other participants were 5 and 6 years old and my baby had just turned THREE!

When they opened the gate and asked the kids to come in, the older children started backing up and were very nervous about entering. Emma quickly said, "I will go first" and I must admit I was a little nervous.

Here are the kiddos getting their buckets filled with the food they fed the stingrays. When Emma first entered the water the stingrays started swarming her and brushing against her legs because they were excited and knew it was time to be fed.

Emma was so excited and I was taking pictures while Curtis videoed. At one point I asked Curtis, "Are you sure we should have let her do this? What if something happens?" I was especially nervous since they made us sign a waiver stating they were not responsible if something happened.

Once again, Emma's biggest fan just stared at her while she enjoyed her time in the Lagoon. He would not take his eyes off of her, so sweet.

At one point Emma got so excited and tried to throw the food really far and it landed on her head. I thought we would never get the smell out of her hair, YUCK!

Waving at us in between feedings and letting us know that she was having a great time.

These stingrays all had their barbs still attached, so that created alot of anxiety for me. I was very concerned that Emma did not comprehend how important it was to shuffle her feet when walking in because the stingrays will bury themselves in the sand and get you if they get frightened. I do not know what I was worried about because the "witty itty bitty" followed the instructions without an issue.

She was showing us she was out of food and asking if she could have some more.

They all got the opportunity to hold a starfish and Emma loved it. This was after she bought her starfish on the beach that she brought home.

This is a conch which happens to be one of the most popular foods in the Bahamas, they serve it many different ways and people love it. Emma was the only one that would touch it or even let the guy get it close to her, the others were like NO WAY!

First in the water and the first out. We were so proud of our big girl and I was in SHOCK that she got in and did this. When we finished they presented her with a certificate that certified her as an Aqua Tot at the Atlantis.
This was a great experience for Emma and one that she still talks about daily. She was super excited that she was chosen and so were we. You surprised us on this one Emma Caroline ~ you just might be the BRAVEST three year old I know and love!


Darla DiStefano said...

I am so proud of you Emma Lou for stepping outside of your comfort zone to enjoy this wonderful experience! Keep up the adventure! and I love you!

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