Evita and Maleficent at Six Flags and Legoland

OK, so Eva Peron and one of Disney’s great villains weren’t hanging out together, or at those places. But we enjoyed a fun week that included all four of these, and though I’m a little late in sharing these reviews, I wanted to tell you about it.

Let’s start with Maleficent. Mamalicious Maria made it possible for the hubs and I to have a date, which is a crazy rarity around these parts, and we enjoyed every single minute alone together. (We sat next to each other! In a dark theater! Without any wiggling children between us! Hands might’ve been held and a kiss exchanged. Good times!)

Maria shared my review on her blog; you can read it HERE. My daughter is now begging me to take her, and I will be happy to see it again. Considering that I think most new movies stink, this is really saying something great about Maleficent!

I will also be happy if I can squeeze in another trip to The Varsity, which hubby and I indulged in after the movie. (Chili dog, rings and an F.O…every time!)

So, a couple days after that, I had an opportunity to take the family to the grand opening of Hurricane Harbor at Six Flags Over Georgia. Woo-whee, was that fun! My entire family couldn’t make it, so we brought some friends along. Our Violet had only been home from Uganda for a week, and it was her first time seeing any kind of amusement park or water park. She just jumped right in like she was born in the water…and then she became a roller coaster junkie who couldn’t get enough of the Dahlonega Mine Train!

We all enjoyed being able to cool down in the chilly wave pool, and though a knee injury kept me from trying out any of the water slides, my kids and our friends declared them all a total blast. We spent several hours around the wave pool and letting the kids ride the big slides, then we finished out our water park time at what used to be called Skull Island. My four-year-old really liked this area because the slides were less intimidating–but the older kids enjoyed it, too. And mama enjoyed having a comfy bench to sit on and observe all the fun.

Here is a video Maria put together, and some pics from our day at the park.

HH Collage

So if all that wasn’t enough to make a fun first week of summer vacation, the following day, we got to check out Legoland Discovery Center Atlanta‘s new Ninjago Training Camp. The main feature is a laser maze, where kids can set a level of difficulty and then try to navigate their way through without breaking any of the laser light beams. My kids enjoyed it, but their favorite part of Ninja Training was this fun light game located just outside the maze:


Violet was particularly skilled at hitting the right colors before time ran out. I finally had to drag her and Jonah away because they were preventing other kids from playing!


More Lego fun included playing in a pit of giant foam Lego blocks, building cars for the test track, riding Merlin’s Apprentice and having a light lunch of sandwiches, chips and yogurt in the cafe. I think one of Violet’s favorites was seeing “Legends of Chima” in the 4D movie theater. She’d never been inside a movie theater before — much less one where the wind blows through your hair and you get rained on!

Finally, our fun week ended with a musical that I’ve always wanted to see, Evita, at Atlanta’s Fabulous Fox Theater.


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I adore the Fox. I’m always happy when I’m there. You just can’t be anywhere this beautiful and NOT be happy.

Unless you’re watching Evita. While burping onion rings from The Varsity. Then, maybe…not so much of the happiness.

Here’s a pic I snapped of me and my sister while we were waiting on it to begin. Aren’t we so cute and excited?

evita sistas

There was no photo taken after the show, because I didn’t think you’d want to see us looking like this…


My sister is a talented actor and theater enthusiast, but we both agreed: the best thing we can say about Evita is that we’ve seen it.

All of the dialogue was sung. ALL of it. Had I not read ahead of time the story of Eva Peron, I’m not sure I’d have known what was going on. Of course, part of that could be due to the fact that I kept dozing off during the first act. It was just so boring! Unlike movies, most of which I think stink (see above), I’ve loved everything I’ve ever seen on Broadway. OK, maybe not love-loved it all, but definitely liked it all. So I fully expected Evita to WOW me.

But wowed, I was not. I will say that some of the voices were really good. The guy playing the narrator (sing-a-rator?) who represented the common people of Argentina (at least, I think that was his role?) had a magnificent voice. I could’ve listened to him sing all day. Eva was just so-so. The sets were pretty. The costumes OK. Just all-in-all, nothing to write home about.

So if you’ve read my opinion of Evita, and for some nutty reason would still like to see it,  you’ll need to hope that you live somewhere else because, sadly (or not so sadly) — today was the last day it played here in Atlanta. You can click the link above for future show dates and times. Or, don’t. Because truly — I can think of a LOT of better things to do with that $50 to $200-a-seat that you’d spend. As we say in our house, “You could feed a whole lotta of orphans for that kind of cash!”

(And before you call me hypocrite — my tickets were complimentary, thank goodness!)

So, there’s my first installment of The Apted Summer Vacation Thus Far.

Come back soon for more reviews, ya hear?