Have you ever had a family activity where you wanted to be fully immersed in the fun without your camera? A few weeks ago our family spent a really fun day at Lagoon compliments of Oracle.
I’ll let you in on a little secret – the only camera I took was my iPhone because I wanted to ride the rides with my kids and completely enjoy the day. My photos from that day are mainly little vignettes (not very high quality) like this one:
Cute memento but what about everything else? Most of the day I was too busy riding rides or swimming with my kids and husband to worry about taking photos. So I just focused on immersing myself in the moments and making memories.
The morning after the event, I took some time to make a list of the things I wanted to remember for the day. I use MacJournal software for this – it helps me keep a journal of things so I can remember them in general and especially if I want to scrapbook them. The list included:
- Riding the Samurai with Kate
- Joseph saying, “I’m a Lucky Man!” when questioned why he said, “Because I’m not a man yet, I’m still a boy.”
- Freezing with the kids in the lazy river
- Riding water slides with Grace & Hyrum
- Joseph wanting to ride EVERY ride with his dad.
- Hyrum and Grace pairing up to tease Kate
- Emily wanting to ride EVERY ride with mom.
- The look on Emily’s face during the wooden roller coaster ride – pure glee, happiness and fright.
- Emily asking to ride the wooden roller coaster again and again.
- The kids (even 15 yr. old Kate) wanting to ride the carousel twice – some rides never get old
- Kate & Hyrum’s love of the Tidal wave (swinging ship) ride.
- Emily in Pioneer Town saying she wished she lived in that time period (Little House on the Prairie is also her favorite show)…
- Troy showing the kids the miniature circus and old sleighs and wagons.
I took some time to expound on a few of the items on the list, most notably my ride on the Samurai with Kate. Riding roller coasters with my oldest daughter Kate is just something we do. She and I have been to California twice to visit theme parks and so it was fitting that we were the only two out of seven in our family brave enough to ride the Samurai.
I wanted to do a layout about this but I didn’t have any photos. What to do? Go to my friend Google and search “Lagoon Samurai.” The results were just a few videos:
Do you see the word IMAGES in the top left? Click on this and you get all the related images:
Next I just searched until I found a photo with no copyright restrictions for my layout. Granted, sometimes this is difficult to do, so another way to search photos is Flickr. Again I just typed in the terms “Lagoon samurai”
and found lots of relevant photos -
One of the biggest hurdles to using this method is making sure you only use those images that you can obtain permission to use in your layouts. You will need to look at the licensing of the image in the photo description to determine this.
For example, when you see this on Flickr, you can pretty much assume it is a no-go:
That said, if you have a hard time finding a photo that is creative commons or copyright friendly – I have actually had success emailing Flickr users to get permission to use their photos for my scrapbook layouts.
Just click on the user name near the photo and then the EMAIL (envelope icon) at the top of one of their photos. Most photographers are more concerned about having their images used for commercial purposes. 80% of the time when I contact them and explain that I would just be using the photo in a scrapbook layout for our family’s personal scrapbook only and posting in online galleries where I would credit them and link to their photo stream, I have received permission.
The journaling in this layout reads: REMEMBER THIS: Your mother was always ready to ride any scary roller coaster you chose – and she loved it because it was time with you. At times the rides were scary but she still rode along because she loves you. It’s really a metaphor for your life – no matter how crazy it gets, whenever you need your mom, you can count on her being there.
Funny how as I was journaling this experience, what I thought I would write and what I wrote were two different things. On this particular day I wasn’t feeling 100% and my stomach especially wasn’t very happy. When I looked at this ride I thought there was no way and then I saw my daughter’s face as she said, “Mom, we’re totally doing that one!” and I knew I had it in me – but I prayed the whole line hoping I’d be ok. Which brought me to WHY I ride roller coasters with my daughter. Sometimes we do things just for fun – and believe me she and I have lots of fun – but for us this is also about the time and something we do. No matter how life goes – whether she’s asking me to ride a roller coaster or to help her with a friend or teacher – everyday I will be there.
Now for an explanation of what the Samurai is and why I was so afraid: Lagoon’s The Samurai consists of six radial arms that spin as the entire ride rotates through an oval arc in either direction. As centrifugal forces increase, the entire ride rises to a near-vertical position, gathering forces that allow each arm to freely rotate. The sensation of flying and performing loops is achieved in a smooth yet thrilling experience.To experience the Samurai, you must be in good health and free from heart conditions, neck and back injury, and other physical limitations. Prior to participating, guests are encouraged to observe the attraction in operation in order to determine its suitability relative to their own physical condition.
Here is the ride in action: