Well, 3am came quite early the day after Christmas but I think we were all so excited for our trip to Pennsylvania that it didn't faze us until...
Bumper to bumper traffic on 81 which made our 12 hour trip turn into 18 long hours.
But once we made it to our hotel and the Register family came baring a delicious salad, fresh bread and wine so it was worth all 18 hours. After getting our bellies full and exchanging gifts we made plans for the next day to venture over to the Hersey's Chocolate World in Hersey, PA.
It was a wet and very cold day but what a better way to spend it in a place filled with the aroma of chocolate goodies.
We made our way into the factory an signed up for the Hersey taste testing class. But before heading into our taste testing lesson we snapped a few pictures in front of the Christmas tree.
Now off into our lesson about the Cocoa pod and how the different chocolates are made. If you would like to check out the Hersey's Chocolate World you can learn more about their tours and events.
The wonderful flavor of chocolate that we enjoy starts with the Cocoa Pod but each chocolate candy varies in the amount of Cocoa that it is made with. Here is an example of a Cocoa Pod.
Here we are smelling, listening and tasting each type of chocolate to learn the differences between Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, etc.
And a little lesson on frothing our hot chocolate. Check out those bubbles!
I think someone thoroughly enjoyed her taste testing lesson. Don't you? Next on our tour of the factory to see how the chocolates are made.
Check out all those yummy Kisses...
Um, no son you may not have the 5lb chocolate candy bar!
After hours of fun at the Hersey's Chocolate World the adults enjoyed a sample of fresh brewed beer at the Iron Hill Brewery.
The kids watched patiently hoping that the snow tubing mountain would hold snow but it just wasn't quite cold enough yet...
So while the kids played we enjoyed a fun game of Cooking Scrabble. Yes, you heard me right -- Cooking Scrabble. You come up with cooking words to earn extra points along with fun recipe cards to throw a curve ball to your opponents along the way. This game is a MUST have!
And we enjoyed some of the local diners...
And then some Thai and Sushi of course...
Payton got a lesson on how to hold chopsticks from Jaden.
I think she got it!
First day of snow we laced up for some family ice skating.
We're ready to go mom. Can you please stop with the pictures!
Check out our next pro-ice skater, Payton!
I'm not sure at this point if I am holding up Payton or if she is holding me up...
But we had a blast!
We were sad to leave Pennsylvania and we dearly miss our friends Kim, Jaden and their kiddos Jordan and Alyssa but hope to see them again very soon. Next on to North Carolina for an over night stop in Mt. Airy to see Chuck's family and then to visit our friends BrynAnne, Jason and their beautiful babies Hannah and Elliot in Charlotte.
My beautiful friend, BrynAnne.
Chuck (Jason) and Chuck
Brynnie and Elliot
Hannah aka Hannah Banana and Payton
Our 2,500 mile family vacation was truly a great one and we were very blessed to spend with with such great friends. We were happy to return home to see my Grandpa who has been in the hospital since the week before Christmas due to having a Quadruple Bypass and has been in ICU still to this day. He has had many complications since the surgery and we have almost lost him a couple of times so please pray for my Grandpa and Grandma to find the strength to make it through this very difficult time.
Thank you for your thoughts and prayers!