Sunday, January 04, 2009

Calling all blogging superforces...

I find myself in a bit of a quandry and am relying upon you, Ultimate Blogging Forces, to help me out of this tight spot.

Justin is turning 10 this February (sob!). This is a big deal. Double digits and all... Plus, he still thinks I'm moderately cool. I had planned on capitalizing on that "coolness" factor and surprising him with a weekend trip for just the two of us (before it suddenly becomes very UNcool to spend a weekend away with dear old Mom...). The "plan" was to go up to Minnesota for white water rafting, which he and I would have LOVED. However, all the places I'm finding up there have a minimum age requirement of 12. Phhhbbbttt...

So.... I am terribly disappointed. The cost, the activity, the timing, the distance... ALL of it would have been perfect. I need your help to figure out an equally cool birthday surprise.

The basic requirements would have to be:

Cost - obviously, I cannot afford thousands of dollars for this. Or even hundreds. I need to be able to pay for it all for under $200 MAX.

Distance - the gas prices WILL go up, of this I am sure. So I need to stay within the Midwest area. Probably anywhere in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Indiana, and lower Michigan or Minnesota.

Fun factor - He and I both love being outdoors, and while our whole family enjoys it, the other two kids aren't great hikers yet. So, big hikes, mountain climbing (to a degree. No rock climbing for Justin), water activities, etc. are all ok. Even a water park is good, but we do those all the time as a family. We also love amusement parks, history, and science.

The ideas I have come up with, in the ten minutes it took me to type this as I make dinner and keep Justin from peeking over my shoulder, are:

Mammoth Cave or another big cave. That's in Tennessee, right?

Different amusement parks. I know there's one in Sandusky, OH. I don't think that drive would be too terrible...

Something about Indiana Dunes. There's an amusement park and other stuff to do there, I know. But what is a good idea to hit? How expensive is it?

HELP. Seriously. I was all hyped about rafting with my boy, and now I am feeling like a 10 day old balloon...
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