(I'm sorry I left you all hanging! Truth is, I probably could have fit everything into one long run-on post...but I thought this would make it easier to read. AND I was way too tired to type anymore last night! *haha*)
Day 2 continued...
The Mall of America is awe-some. I love it! We arrived after our IKEA breakfast and found a parking spot in one of the TWO monstrous parking garages. Oh, I should mention that Jeremy and I are rather neurotic when it comes to mall-walking. Under no circumstances is there any meandering allowed. We pick a direction to walk in and stick with it, making sure we see every single thing along our way. So we were worried that this huge mall might have absolutely no organization and would leave us zig zagging around in bewilderment. Turns out, it's really well organized in a big 'ol square and we had no trouble making our way around. :) What a relief huh? I'm sure you were worried. ;)
What's amazing is that every single section and level of the Mall feels and looks different. The colors, the design...everything makes you feel like you're in a new mall around every corner.
The MOA was hosting a Knitting and Crochet Convention on the main level. It was packed! Lot's of ladies crowded around kitting demo's and make-n-takes, plus a huge gathering in the main circle where they were listening to speakers.
I thought it was all a little silly...until I found out they had just recently done this same thing for scrapbooking! WHA'?!? Oh my gosh, that would've been SO fun!! Not for Jeremy, but I would have had a cow! *haha* Speaking of scrapbooking and having a cow...the Archiver's inside the MOA is huge! It's bigger than any free-standing Archiver's I've ever seen.
In retrospect, I wish I would have taken pictures INSIDE the store! But I was too busy walking around in a scrapbook stupor, filling up my basket. *haha* The people there were so, so, so nice. I wanted to put on an apron and jump behind the counter with them.
The best thing about the MOA is the variety of stores you won't see anywhere else.
The "Life is Good" store. I love their products, especially the ones with the little yellow dog! And they were having a sale! (I think everyone was having a sale this weekend!)
The QVC store! (Which really didn't have squat but it looked so cool from the outside.)
The American Girl store. Two stories high, with all the same features as the one we saw in NYC.
Old Navy! Ok so we have those here, but this one was two stories high! :)
Lego Land was a kid's paradise! They even had buckets and tables full of legos for kids to build with right there. (Jeremy and I speculated as to how many of those tiny blocks "disappear" every day. *haha*)
For lunch we ate at Famous Dave's, one of about a dozen full-size restaurants inside the mall. There are also two full-sized food courts! Craziness. And the rest of day one at the mall involved lot's and lot's and lot's of walking. And whenever we changed levels, we took the stairs. Just trying to make up for all the calories I was taking in. *haha*
That evening we went to see "International," or whatever that stupid bank movie with Clive Owen is called. I didn't like it, can you tell? But I just can't stand Clive Owen period, so that might have blurred my view.
Wish I could tell you I got up and worked out again that morning, but I didn't. :( After walking the entire MOA the day before, plus being out late with the movie, I was ZONKED. Sorry to disappoint. I went once, OK?! Geez get off my back. *haha* Ok so I feel a little guilty. ;)
We had breakfast at the hotel and then headed back to the MOA. This time we parked on the opposite side and started with a visit to the aquarium! Yes, the aquarium! It's underneath the mall! Bizarre.
We took the Behind-the-Scenes tour, so we got to see the lab (where they were dissecting a baby stingray that had died recently - NASTY!) and the top of the tanks (looking down at the sharks swimming around was pretty freaky, they seemed closer somehow). We also got to see the kitchen, where they keep the "fish food." Here's our tour guide showing us one of the "larger portions."
The majority of the aquarium is a tunnel which you ride through on a moving pathway. It's kept really clean and clear, so it's practically like being underwater. The sharks and fish got SO close on the other side of that glass.
This aquarium has the largest shark exhibit in the world. Get a load of some of these beasties...
This guy is called a Guitar Shark. I don't think I'd ever seen one before.
I haven't at all mentioned the amusement park in the center of the MOA. We had originally planned on riding one or two on this day after the aquarium, but Jeremy wanted to do the "Underwater Rollercoaster" simulation thing at the aquarium and it made me SooOOOoooOOoooo motionsick (or would that be seasick? *haha*) that I totally didn't feel like riding anything else. But I'll still show you some pictures, because it's a really cool area. It used to be Camp Snoopy, but it's recently been made over as Nickelodeon Universe. I kept thinking that my niece would LOVE all the familiar characters!
What's really cool is that because the center of the mall is lit mainly by skylights, at night it seems to get much darker. Which allows all the rides to be illuminated! It really adds to the atmosphere and makes you feel like you're at a carnival or something.
Macy's was having a President's Day sale so we spent some time there. And then we passed New York & Company and saw they were having a $5.99 sale! Holy moly! I got a sweater, a tank top and a long sleeve shirt for just $5.99 each! I couldn't believe it. :)
Since Jeremy had chosen our movie the previous nigh and it turned out to be not-so-hot, he took me to see a late matinee of "Confessions of a Shopaholic" in the mall theater. It's completely girly and silly and cheesy, but I really liked it. :)
Our last stop in the MOA was the mini-golf course. We love putt-putt and never pass up an opportunity to play. (Even though I'm really quite terrible.) It was a nice little course, too!
And then we decided we needed to get back to the hotel, considering we had to figure out how to pack all of our purchases into the very little space we had left in our luggage. Plus, our flight was at 6am the next morning, which required us to be up and gone before 4am to get our rental car returned and to our gate on time. (HENCE, why I was so tired yesterday. "Yeah, hence!" *hehe*)
So that's it for now. :) If you would like to see all the trip photos, feel free to visit my two Facebook albums (you don't have to be my friend on Facebook to view.)