Jenn Morgan Danny Drake

What makes you get up each day and start anew? What makes some days more fun to you?

Do you try new things? If offered the chance, do you think you could, you would or you should? As Dr. Seuss said, "If you never did you should. These things are fun and fun is good."

Fun is fun, no matter what age you are. You can have fun anytime, anyplace that you are.

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We are in the middle of fun, so close to the shore. There is lots to do, from the beach to the boards to the thrill of a an aquarium tour.

You may think one is too young to have fun, but just take a ride on the merry-go-round. Or hop on the ferris wheel to take in the sites and the chaotic sound.

So you may have figured out that lately I have been reading Dr. Seuss to my daughter. The books are exciting and uplifting, and even encouraging. How can a Dr. Seuss book be a source of inspiration to a thirty-four year old you ask? For a mom who often feels like she is always working, cleaning or tending to the needs of a young toddler, whimsical fun is just what the doctor ordered. The books motivate me to explore life and introduce my daughter to new experiences.

"Oh baby, the places you will go." With my newfound inspiration, I have made it my mission to indulge my daughter's thirst for knowledge and take her to places she has never been to and see things she has never seen. We have had a busy, action-packed few weeks and she has enjoyed every minute of it.

"A person's a person, no matter how small." Isabella received a gift card to Build-A-Bear for her first birthday. My husband thought we should wait to take her as she would not truly appreciate the experience at her young age. He pouted, but along he came, eager to experience her first shopping spree. Isabella squealed with delight while she picked out her puppy "skin"- it was devoid of stuffing, so my husband tried to teach her to call it road kill. I snapped pictures like I was the paparazzi while she picked out her little puppy's heart, slippers and robe. Yes, she picked out the outfit and strolled around the store repeatedly dropping everything. But she would not give anything up, she looked like a hoarder trying to keep all of her goods contained in her little arms. Bang! Bang! Bang! Delighted again as she tapped at the keyboard to register her pup. We left Build-A-Bear a few dollars poorer but with a happier tot in tow.

"Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one." Taking some advise from Dr. S (yeah, we're cool like that and on a first name basis), we next ventured to the Atlantic City Aquarium with my longtime friend and his daughters. There was a bit of a rocky start with a cranky toddler (mine, of course) and a dirty diaper, but pretty soon my little Jacques Cousteau was ready to explore the "fishies". Isabella pointed to the pretty bright fish, cried when I tried to dunk her in the shark tank (just kidding), and screamed when she touched the sting ray, but then came back for more. She squealed when the lizard tried to dig his way out of the tank, but cried when she got too close to him. As  there are three levels to the aquarium, massive if you are a 1-year-old, my daughter left a trail of Cheerios so she could find her way back home. My apologies to the cleaning staff if they are reading this - I really did try to pick the Cheerios up!

"I know, up on top you are seeing great sights, but down here at the bottom we, too, should have rights." Needing more action, my husband, my father and I took Isabella to the boardwalk for some good old-fashioned summer fun. The majority of the rides are for big kids, but we found a few to satisfy the thrill-seeker in my daughter. We perched her atop the carousel horse on the merry-go-round and Isabella waved to the throngs of fellow vacationers like she was Miss America greeting her biggest fans. My husband then took her on the flying dumbo ride and perhaps drunk from the excitement, Isabella looked like she was going to throw up. Lesson learned, no dinner just before rides. In the mood to get a fresh perspective on the night, we went for a ride on the ferris wheel. Isabella loved the bird's eye view, pointed and waived to her fans from below and was grinning like a cheshire cat. Since she is my daughter and has a matching sweet tooth, we ended the night with creamy ice cream cones from Kohr Brothers. We had to treat her to a cone because she freaked out when she saw someone else eating some ice cream and we just couldn't end such a wonderful night with a sour face.

"You're off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is get on your way!"

Go visit an unfamiliar site, go search out a new town. Whatever you do, make sure your children are around. Open their eyes to various adventures so we have a new generation of cultured youngsters.


*Notable quotes by the late great and wonderfully talented Dr. Seuss. Rookie attempts at Dr. Seuss-inspired rhymes by the aspiring author formerly known as Jennifer Morgan.



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