Saturday, January 28, 2017

Mall OF America... HERE I COME!

It's been my dream or WISH since I was 37 years old.  I wanted to spend my 40th birthday at the Mall Of America, in Minnesota.  From all of my research, the majority of people say, "This is a DEFINITE bucketlist item!" I was never sure if I would really have the opportunity to go.  Anyone can dream, right? About two weeks ago, Darren came to me and said, "I have been trying to plan your birthday present, but I can't keep it a surprise anymore because there are too many details and questions I have?" "Huh?", I said? So he told me.  "I have been trying to plan your trip to the Mall Of America?" "HOLY COW!!!! NO WAY!" was my response.  Hehe. I was blessed with a new car in September.  When Darren handed over the keys he said, "Happy Thanksgiving.  Merry Christmas! Happy Birthday!!!!!! Happy Valentine's Day! Happy Anniversary!!"  So, getting a trip for my birthday, I thought, was not an option.  This man NEVER FAILS ME! 

So... on February 9th, my actual birthday, I am heading to the MOA, to spend Thursday - Sunday there. Darren wanted to come with me SOOOOOOO bad and he is actually sad that he can't go.  Our childcare, for out of town, is very limited and we just couldn't make it work this time.  So sad.  BUT, my sister Ashley, who I haven't seen in four years, is meeting me there.  At first, I really wanted to go alone, if I couldn't go with my hubby.  The only part that I was weirded out about was eating dinner, at a restaurant, by myself.  Otherwise, being alone meant doing whatever I want.  AND CATCHING UP on my sleep/blogging. I am so excited to have someone to go with though. We are going to have a blast.  
Enjoy a few funny, quirky, facts about the Mall Of America: 
1. You could fit seven Yankee Stadiums inside the Mall of America.
2. Or you could fit 32 Boeing 747s inside the Mall of America.
3. Or you could fit 258 Statues of Liberty inside the Mall of America.
4. The Mall of America has its own counterterrorism unit.
5. If you were to visit the mall and spend 10 minutes inside every store, it would take you 86   hours to complete your journey.
6. It took 13,300 tons of steel to build the Mall of America. That’s almost twice the amount it took to build that Tinkertoy the Eiffel Tower.
7. It boasts having a 1.2 million-gallon aquarium.
8. Feeding these aquatic creatures requires more than 100 pounds of food, daily.
9. It cost more than $650 million to build the Mall of America in 1992.
10. And they just confirmed a $325 million expansion of the mall. By the way, a trip to the moon costs roughly $100 million per person.
11. The Mall of America generates almost $2 billion in annual revenue for the state of Minnesota.
12. On Black Friday in 2013, 29-year-old Serge Vorobyov was “cited for disorderly conduct” for throwing $1,000 off the fourth story balcony at the Mall of America. He was inspired to do so by a GEICO commercial.
13. There is a light rail that will take you straight from the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport to the Mall of America. You barely have to step outside.
14. You can get married at the Chapel of Love in the Mall of America. In fact, more than 7,000 people have gotten married at the Mall of America since it opened.
15. The Mall of America used to have a high school in it! Talk about an All-American education.
16. Ever wanted to get lost? The Mall of America has one of the largest mirror mazes on the planet!
17. The Mall of America plans to install two zip lines in the very near future.
18. It has no central heating. Despite Minnesota’s hot summers and brutally cold winters, the only parts of the Mall of America that are heated are the entrances. The year-round 70 degree temperature that it averages is maintained by body heat, lighting fixtures, and solar heat from the skylights.
19. The Mall of America uses water-saving toilets. This saves 1.4 million gallons of water a year.
20. The Mall of America boasts 40 million visitors annually.
21. In lieu of pesticides, 72,000 lady bugs were released in the Mall of America to protect its tropical plant life from aphids.
22. Speaking of plant life, moving all of those trees into the Mall of America required the labor of 65 semi-trucks.
23. The Mall of America was built where Metropolitan Stadium once stood (former home of the Vikings and the Twins). There are plaques around marking where home plate was and where iconic home runs landed.
24. Allegedly, one in three visitors comes from at least 150 miles away, while 4 out of 10 visitors are tourists of some kind.
25. The Mall of America holds the world record for having the most Ninja Turtles amassed in one area. There were 836. Previous record: 786.
26. There are more than 520 stores in the Mall of America.
27. The Mall of America produces upward of 4,000 pounds of biodiesel fuel monthly from recycled fryer fat.
28. The Mall of America employs roughly 11,000 employees year round, and about 13,000 during the peak seasons.
29. Contained within two parking ramps, the Mall of America offers 12,550 on-site parking spots.
30. It’s the largest mall in the United States, 4.87 million square feet.
Ashley and I are staying at the Radisson Blu Mall Of America.  This hotel looks AH-mazing AND SOOOOOO contemporary. Just the way I like it. It's also conveniently attached to the mall, so we can drop off our bags if our arms are too full/tired and need to rest our feet for a few minutes, but not for long... haha.  I ain't wasting a moment of this opportunity.  

If we finish shopping before our time is up, after all it takes 86 hours to complete IF you spend 10 minutes in each store, then we plan to take their metro or a taxi to explore St. Paul or other parts of Minnesota.  We even have a "fancy night" planned.  Gosh... I have SOOOO much to do to prepare this home for my departure and myself for my trip! Lord Jesus give me EXTRA ENERGY!

I cannot tell you how excited I am.  Darren, I love you and I am so thankful for this opportunity.  Saying goodbye to my 30s will be just fine. 40 is just a number and truthfully, I feel like last year and this year have been my best year yet!!! It's time this BIG 40 year old girl, do BIG THINGS, like shop at the largest mall in America, until I drop!!! #SoFun #MyHusbandROCKS

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