Marco Island is an annual vacation spot we do every year. As a family we have been to Marco 13 times, I’ve been going since my first birthday! If you haven’t heard of Marco Island it is located in southwest Florida, and located near Naples. This year we went to go see sun sets, went paddle boarding, and fished A LOT.
Almost every day it rained and I heard the week before we got there, there was 18 inches of rain. So that means there was a lot of mosquitoes. Everywhere you went there would be bugs, and you would get bitten and it would itch, it was disgusting! When it wasn’t raining we would go to the beach to see a sunset. The sun would make the sky turn different colors such as purple, orange, and pink; it was beautiful. During the day on the beach we went paddle boarding. It was my first time and it was amazing, I recommend going paddle boarding. Where I went the water was clear and I was able to see fish and cool shells, I saw a sting ray, a crab, and a couple of sand dollars.
For the past three years we have done a fishing competition to see who can catch the most fish, and every time I have won. The rental house we stay at has a dock, and we fish out of it into a canal, which eventually leads into the Gulf of Mexico. We usually catch snapper, sheepshead, and catfish. This year we rented a pontoon boat and we went to this small island not far from Marco. When we arrived at the island, I baited my hook with shrimp and started to fish. I caught eight fish, seven whiting and one catfish, which helped me gain points in the fishing competition. I am certain I caught the same exact fish three different times because it was the same size, I caught him in the same spot, and it already had holes in his lip. When we were driving back to the Marina I was given the chance to drive the boat. The one thing I learned was “Red Right Returning.” This means the red buoys should be on the right side of the boat when returning from the ocean. The next day we went on this charter boat to go off shore fishing. We have done off shore fishing before and we catch about 50 fish and keep about 25 fish, and then eat fish for dinner. This year was totally different. At our first stop we were trying to catch snapper and gag grouper. We fished there for about an hour and a half. I caught two fish…… I caught a small snapper which we weren’t allowed to keep because it was too small and I also caught a bait fish. The coolest part of the boat ride was seeing a nine foot tiger shark swimming behind the boat. The captain said that is why we were not catching snapper. The next fishing spot we fished at was even farther out into the Gulf. I caught one fish there, it was a small snapper again and it is called a grunt snapper because it likes to make noises like a pig. We used the grunt as bait to try and catch a big fish. The grunt didn’t catch anything big, but someone else caught something big. The captain said it was either a nurse shark or a goliath grouper that weighed about 100 pounds. Eventually the line snapped and we didn’t know for sure what it was. In total my family caught about 15 fish and we were only allowed to keep four snappers. At the end of the trip I won the fishing competition with 12 fish and my brother came second with nine fish.
So this year’s trip to Marco Island was really fun and I am glad I tried out new things such as, Paddle Boarding and learning how to drive a boat. I know I will be returning next year and I hope to make a lot more memories.
Driving a boat around Marco Island’s 10,000 islands.
Paddle boarding off Marco Island.
Marco Island Sunset
Marco Island Sunset
Deep sea fishing off Marco Island
Deep sea fishing off Marco Island
Winner of the Marco Island fishing tournament!
Every year my family and I go on a trip down south to an Island called Marco Island. The Island is about thirty minutes south of Naples another beach but a larger area. We have been going to Marco Island for 12 years and I just turned 13 years old. My Nana and Papa invite my family and my aunt and uncle with their two children. Every year we have a fishing tournament. We have an award for the most fish caught and the biggest fish. The tournament is more interesting because our rental house has a dock with a canal at the back. The fish I could see were snapper, sheepshead, and catfish. But I also saw some jelly fish and a starfish.
Like always we rent a pontoon boat a go out to this small island to play in the sand and fish. My brother caught a snook and I was jealous because snook is my favorite snook to catch because I have been cautions them since I was about 6 years old. A day later we went on a charter boat to go deep sea fishing. We went on Miss Louise and fished out in the Gulf of Mexico. I caught a lot of snapper and a couple small red grouper. My Dad and Papa caught bigger red grouper and one of them was a 21 inches. At the end of the trip I caught 23 fish and only got to keep about 15 of them to eat. We had fish tacos that night. A couple days later we went to a pier and my Dad caught about a 12 inch shark and was called a bonnethead. At the end of the trip I caught the most fish with 26 and my Papa caught the biggest fish which was the grouper. One of my favorite restaurants at Marco is the sandbar. They serve bunch of small food like mini tacos, mini burgers, wings, mini hotdogs, and they are all good. My brother and I found $5 from quarters in their small arcade. I hope I will have the chance to go back with my family.
As you probably know is that I go to Disney World a lot because my dad works there. But recently I went to Disneyland California. The reason we went was because my dad was on a business trip for the races. He helps with all the Run Disney race entertainment. I went to both of the parks which are Disneyland Park and California Adventure. The two different theme parks are very different. In Disneyland you can walk to everything. Downtown Disney was right under our hotel and we could walk to the parks from there. At Disney World have to take a bus, drive, or a monorail to get to everything.
At the Disneyland Park we went to most of the rides. We went all the main ones. We went on Hyper Space Mountain, which is space mountain but Star Wars themed. Star Tours, Buzz Light Year, and Pirates of the Caribbean. All of those we have at World and they are kind similar. Also The Haunted Mansion was closed because they were taking down all the Christmas lights. The Small World Ride also had a lot of lights in it and we got to see them. In Its a Small World they made all Christmas themed and mashed up jingle bells with the theme song from Its a Small World. There were different rides we went on too like a Nemo Submarine thing where you go into. Submarine and you go under water and join Nemo and friends. It was really cool it is really different from World. Finally at this park I went on Indiana Jones which was a little shaken but still fun. It reminds me of the mummy at Universal.
The other park was I think better because they had Cars Land. Cars used to be my favorite movie as a kid and it almost an exact replica of the movie. They had a ride there which was about you preparing for a race against another car. You get to see all the characters and at the end you race another car with people in it. Out of the 2 times I went I won both times. Some characters actually drive around Cars Land. They also had food where the Cozy Cones were little food stands and they were selling in one of those cones, bacon ma & cheese in a cone. It was ok the mac & cheese was good but the cone wasn’t all good. We also got souvenir cups like a little gas tank. We also got a BB-8 cup.
They also have Tower and Terror but unlike like World it doesn’t go forward. It was still fun though. We also got a chance to go on the water ride there which is a mountain shaped like a bear. The water ride was fun but I barely got wet which is a good thing and a bad thing counting that we were going up to the room right after. They have a roller coaster which is really fun. It has one loop, it screams music into your ear, and really smooth. I also heard that right before you go on the loop look up and while your upside down you can see a hidden Mickey. The ride is called California Scream’n.
For breakfast most of the mornings we went to a fast service kind of restaurant that served Mickey Waffles which are the best. The best rides at the parks were California Scream, Hyper Space Mountain, and Cars. I had a really fun time at LA and I want to come back when Haunted Mansion is open and the new Star Wars part is open.
Time for the Matterhorn!
Visiting the Chinese Theater in Hollywood.
A quick trip to Santa Monica pier!
Big Thunder Mountain!
Checking out the bat mobile!
Love these tire hats in Radiator Springs.
Time for Small World!
Waffles for breakfast.
Holding a real oscar!
The “Oil Can” and the mac & Cheese cone.
Up high on the ferris wheel!
Filming a scene for the next Batman movie!
This summer our really big vacation to Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Tennessee. My mom, my brother and I went on a plane. My dad drove up so we don’t have to bring luggage every where and renting a car and dropping it off in a different state is expensive. I don’t like Southwest Airlines because there are no assigned seats. My mom was stressing that we will not find three seats together, but we did.
When we landed we traveled around the city of Chicago and we visited the Bean and Buckingham Fountain. I always like visiting the Bean and it was my first time visiting the Buckingham Fountain. For dinner we had Hackneys. This is where we met up with my dad and we all split a onion loaf. I had a burger and I ate a couple bites of a patty melt. That was my first time eating a patty melt it was really good.
I felt asleep on the airplane next to my mom.
Chicago’s Art Institute
The Bean in Chicago.
Green River at Hackney’s!
After lunch we drove over to my aunts in the suburbs of Chicago, Arlington Heights. We saw their dog and my new cousin. My new cousin, Robin, is a girl and the first one on my mom’s side of the family. For dinner we had pizza. We had deep dish and flat bread pizza. I really liked it.
Me and baby Robin!
All the cousins!
Lou Malnati’s Pizza- a must when we are in Chicago!
When we left Chicago, we went to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Here we stayed at this old house with these weird rooms and only one bathroom. When we went to Wisconsin my family and I came with my cousins, the Duncans, and my uncle Katie, Jimmy, baby Robin and their dog, Penny. The house was an upstairs and down stairs but the upstairs wouldn’t connect to the downstairs. My aunt and uncle with the dog slept downstairs and the rest of us went upstairs. Upstairs there was only one bathroom for eight people. Some rooms were weird like there was a door camouflaging and a room behind the front door and another one above the kitchen. My cousins and I learned how to play blackjack. The next day we were spending the day on the lake. We have a private dock where we fished and swam. On the boat we went tubing. It was really wavy and chopped so there were a lot of bumps. But it was awesome!
Tubing on Lake Geneva.
We caught the smallest fish in the lake!
Getting in some Lake Geneva sunset fishing.
Swimming in Lake Geneva.
Fish Fry Friday night in Wisconsin!
Here’s a video my mom made of all the tubing fun!
After we packed we hung out at my aunt’s house again and then packed up the next day we went to Michigan to play on the dunes. We rented a sled to ride down the dunes but it was really hot and when you go down you have to walk up in the really hot sand. When I was climbing up the dune it felt like my feet was on fire. I did not like it at all. Then we left and got ice-cream. I got an Oreo ice-cream. We drove to Indiana and stayed at a hotel there.
Silver Lake State Park & Dunes
On top of the world.
Silver Lake State Park & Dunes
The next day it was my birthday. On my birthday we drove down to Tennessee to stay at a log cabin for a few days. It was cool because it had a movie theater and we were on a mountain. The town around it was kind of weird because it had like three go kart places right next to each other. There was also weird named places. At the cabin we were staying with some of my uncles friends. One day we went zip lining which was kind of fun. But after was whitewater rafting. That was really cool. No one from our boat fell off but someone else we know did fall off a different boat. When we came back we decided to go to a roller coaster on a mountain/hill. It was a coaster that you can control your own speed and it was dark so lights lighted up. It was scary at night but fun. After we drove back to the cabin and watched a movie. On the last day we went on a hike in the mountains. At the end was waterfall that you can step into the stream. It was really tiring up hill but easier down hill. Later that night most of our group went hillbilly golfing. It is mini golfing but down hill. I didn’t go because I was tried and I didn’t think it would that fun because it is just golfing. The day after is when we had to leave and pack up. We headed out and we stopped at the Cherokee Indian Reservation and went tubing. It wasn’t fast tubing but it was like lazy river tubing. Almost at the end was a rope swing which led to a deep part which was awesome. After we were finished we started driving home and we made it safely the next day.
The top of the waterfall!
Whitewater rafting on the Upper Pigeon River in Tennessee.
It was really fun going to Washington D.C. We did a tour around the White House on our first day. But we were only allowed in the east wing. We also saw Bo for a half a second (Barack Obama’s dog). We were all surprised and curious if we actually saw Bo. The rest of it was cool but it wasn’t the best. I learned that they put up about 20 Christmas trees in one room. After we walked to the mall and played on the fields for a while.
After playing we went to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. That was really cool. It shows you how they make money. I saw 100,000,000 dollars in $10 bills in a box. In total I saw about $100,000,000,000,000 dollars. The thing that I liked that I learned was the ways to see the tricks to see if the money was real.
Then we went on a tour of the Capitol. My favorite was seeing Bo for that day. After that day we didn’t walk as much.
We went to the spy museum and I learned what things you have to learn to be a spy. Like you code name. I liked a picture explaining that a pigeon got the Medal of Honor because it was carrying messages from base to base. Then it got hurt but still delivered a messenger then that helped us win a war. But I don’t remember which. We also went to the zoo and saw panda bears! We didn’t stay long because it was about to rain. But it was my first time seeing a panda bear. We also got to see a lion roar. We saw monkeys and elephants. The penguins were closed so we didn’t go there.
We saw the MSU football game with alumni group and we won against Purdue. We also went to the Air&Space museum. Which we saw the Discovery Space Shuttle. A lot of war planes. We even saw the space ship which the guy jumped out then landed back on earth. I saw and learned a bombing plane that dropped a nuclear bomb on Japan and only two nuclear bombs have been blown off.
The next day we went to the Arlington Cemetery. We saw the memorial for the hidden soldier. Also every hour they change their guard and we saw that. The cool thing is there is always someone out there even in storms. We saw all the other memorials to which was really cool. I like Abe the best cause you can run up the stairs and run back down and Abe is huge. After that day we went back home and did are home work that we missed over the 4 days of school we were gone. My favorite was the spy museum. The thingg I liked the most while learning was the engraving.
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
MLK, Jr Memorial
Julia Child’s Emmy!
FDR and Brendan.
Pre-White House Tour!
The only place close enough we were allowed to take a picture to prove we were in the White House.
I went on another trip to Marco Island. We packed up all of our stuff and drove about 5 hours. But it was worth it. When I got there I unpacked and went to sleep cause it was 10:30.
The next day I went in the pool and unpacked the rest of my stuff. On the back of the house there was a canal that you can fish in. So we started a family fishing contest. We fished and caught some snapper. I caught one we could have saved to eat, but it flopped out of my dad’s hands. A couple days later I went deep sea fishing, but I’ll talk more about that later.
The next day we went on a pontoon boat. All we caught were whitings. The next day just relaxed. After that day my dad threw me in the pool with my pajama’s. Then in a I went kayaking. It was cool cause your really close to the water. After, me and my mom went in the pool again. Then we packed up and left back to go home. It was a great vacation.
I went to Marco Island on vacation for two week. We went fishing a lot, and we went on a big fishing trip, but I already talked about that.
I also went on a air boat ride in the Everglades I saw 6 gators it was really fun.
this is me holding a gator in the Florida Everglades.
This a gator that we saw on the air boat.
And we went to the craft store and made crafts we went to the beach and saw really big shells.
We like to ride around too,looking for big houses and gopher turtles.
This is one really big house. It’s actually two houses connected by a garage.
We like going in the pool. Fish off a pier. And went mini golf. It was a really fun time and we have been going there for 10 years. There was also owls near by too.
This is when I went deep sea fishing.
These are owls in a nest in Marco.
this is the sign of the gopher tortoise