Well, this summer our vacation plans got messed up, thanks to Covid… we were supposed to go to Myrtle Beach for Autumn’s dance national, but it was canceled. We still considered going, but then our flights with Delta got all messed up. SO, luckily we got refunds on the flights and were able to cancel our airbnb without any difficulties. Brian and I usually do a vacation without the kids and I was toying with the idea of going to London. I wanted attend a RISE Together conference there on my birthday weekend with Hollis Co. and that DEFINITELY didn’t happen… which, I’m sure most of you have heard they’re now separated! Thankfully, I had done some research on that trip, but hadn’t booked anything for it yet. I still want to see London someday, though!
So, with Covid going on, I decided I felt comfortable vacationing somewhere IN state, so that is what we did and we had a great time! I might add, someone in our family had to be tested for Covid (they got exposed at the orthodontist) and we got a negative test before we left, thank goodness. That made for a stressful week before leaving. I am SO over Covid!
So, for our in state trip I decided on Big Cedar Lodge, which is close to Branson, MO (4 hours away from St. Louis). Big Cedar Lodge is owned by Bass Pro Shops and there is a lot of activities to do inside the resort. The resort sits along Table Rock Lake and the food is very top notch on the resort. We stayed 5 days and 4 nights, which was the perfect amount of time for us as a family.
The first day we drove the long 4 hours in and then spent the late afternoon/evening relaxing in our cabin, going out to dinner and swimming. Our cabin (#563) had a view of the Table Rock Lake this time, last time we stayed we had a cabin closer to the Devil’s Pool and restaurant.
Our cabin had a King size bed, a folding out sofa sleeper, kitchen, bathroom and deck. It was the perfect size for us.
Big Cedar has a new area called Fun Mountain that offers a lot more entertainment, especially for kids. There is go karts, a rope course, bowling, etc. This is a new area that they didn’t have the last time we were there, so we were all excited to check it out. First we ate lunch at Uncle Bucks Fish Bowl Grill and their shrimp and fries meal was delicious (and, I added on a margarita, ha!). We decided to go back the next day to check out everything else, since we wanted to go swimming and relax since we spent most of the day driving in.
On our way out of Fun Mountain I asked the kids if I could get a photo of them and they both agreed… and, they acted like they might actually like each other! Ha!! This might be one of my favorite photos from our trip. 🙂
After dinner we went to the Devil’s Pool to relax.
On our second day, Nathan and I got up early to do a 4 mile walk. We both needed to get 4 mile runs in on Monday and Tuesday (I’m training for a half marathon and he needed it for cross country) and we decided to walk the 5K run route that Big Cedar has at their resort. We wanted to see how hilly it would be, ha-ha! The Ozarks are pretty dang hilly.
Nathan and I walked over to the Truman Cafe and I got a banana, peanut butter and oat smoothie and a HUGE cinnamon roll. Brian and Autumn drove up to meet us for breakfast.
Then we drove back over to Fun Mountain and did all the fun things! The kids did the ropes and then we all did the go carts together.
For lunch, we went back to Uncle Bucks Fish Bowl Grill and I ordered a pimento grilled cheese, it was to die for!
After lunch we went back to our cabin and decided to take a walk to the Table Rock Lake that is right behind our cabin. The water was beautiful!
I didn’t get a lot of photos of Brian on this trip (he hates photos!), but Autumn took this nice photo of us together.
Then, Brian got this photo of me with Autumn. I swear, I put my hair up in a wet bun and had no makeup the entire trip! We were busy and it was SO hot and humid that I don’t think styling my hair or doing my makeup would have worked at all! Although, I did get a nice tan! 🙂
We found out there was a pool within walking distance of our cabin and it is an infinity pool, which is really neat. The bottom of the pool was painted a dark color to make the water of it match the Table Rock Lake in the background. So pretty!
I swear, my kids happy place is the pool! They become fish… they don’t want to get out!
On our third day, we decided to try out the room service for breakfast since we needed to get an early start to Silver Dollar City.
We ate the breakfast out on our shaded deck and it was glorious! I love to eat breakfast outside and sip on my cup of coffee and soak in the morning.
I purchased tickets for Silver Dollar City back in early June and I really thought this whole virus was going to be behind us by then. Boy was I wrong!! The park was at 25% capacity and masks were required… and, it was really hot! But, we got there early and left early and still had a lot of fun. I put on SO much hand sanitizer that day, it was crazy.
Autumn isn’t big on rides, so we did a lot of walking around and checking out the stores. We LOVE the Disney Christmas store, so when we saw that there was a Christmas store in Silver Dollar City we had to stop in.
I purchased a couple of ornaments at the Christmas store for my tree. 🙂
Autumn and I went in this shop where you can watch them make taffy and we bought some, too. There were SO many different flavors and they’re so good! After that we road some rides and I didn’t get a lot of other photos.
Before heading back to the cabin, we stopped at Truman Cafe at our resort and got some ice cream. I also got myself an iced coffee, I needed it after Silver Dollar City. So good! My sundae had a cookie underneath it.
On our last full day, we had breakfast at Devil’s Pool and then swam some more in the infinity pool (sorry, no photos!). That afternoon we drove to Top of the Rock, which is a neat little area of Big Cedar where there is more things to do. We rented a golf cart and took a scenic tour through the Ozarks with lots of waterfalls… and a drive through a cave to stop at the Bat Bar!
Of course, they had cocktails for the adults and mocktails for the kids. I got a cannonball and it was tropical and delish!
Here is one of the waterfalls we drove past. Brian drove the golf cart and there were quite some steep drop offs, but thankfully there were fences. Lol! I am not one for heights!
After the golf ride, we went to Osage Restaurant, which has a gorgeous view and the best food of all of Big Cedar! I was craving seafood, so I got a pasta with lobster in it. So good!
Here is a view of the Top of the Rock from our dinner table. So pretty!
I just wanted to close out this post with the three photos above that show just how beautiful this place is nestled in nature. We had such a great time at Big Cedar Lodge and hope to come back again in the future!