RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Thursday, April 30, 2009

California has everything - DISNEYLAND!

Since today is the last day of April and I'm determined to finish this saga before I DIE, here it is, that mecca of all things family, that wonderland of whee, DISNEYLAND!

We took turns going on Splash Mountain and taking pictures with Pooh and company. Chloe loved Splash Mountain, Graeme didn't really and Kai wasn't big enough.

Speaking of big enough, I told Chloe to go give Pooh a big hug and she gave me one of those teenage looks and said, "I'm not three, mother." My response was along the lines of: "yeah, but you're not eighteen, either, so get hugging, missy!" It's good to know I can still win some battles!

Of course no family vacation would be complete without at least one battle scar to show off at home. Graeme slipped and fell off one of those low retaining walls they have around all of the flower beds.....I love him dearly but he is the biggest klutz ever! You can tell I have three kids because even though he fell head first onto pavement, I waited until he stopped crying to take him to the first aid station. It wasn't bleeding so the only reason I even took him was to get it cleaned off. Then, I almost laughed when the first aid lady asked if I wanted a list of local emergency rooms. I felt a little bad after that, but he really was just fine. Plus, he got a couple of awesome Disney band-aid tattoos!

In retrospect, I probably would feel worse about this except for the fact that the next day his forehead got all sweaty and the band-aid fell off and he didn't even care.

Awwwwwtopia! This was cool because they let Graeme and Kai switch places after the first time around so they both got to drive without standing in line twice even though half the state of Utah was in the park at the time! It turns out none of our kids are quite big enough (or old enough, in Graeme's case) to ride alone, although I suspect that the next time we go that won't be as much of a problem.

Even though this was actually California Adventure, I just can't resist close-ups of my cute kids!
Look at those big blue eyes!

Here's a little bit of "psycho eyes", but I have to be understanding since she was doing her darndest to have the time of her life!

We did our very best to avoid "standing in line" photos, but a few sneaked in since most of our time for three days was spent standing in line. Like I said, I'm convinced that at least half the state of Utah was there, not to mention the Canadians and native Californians. The first day we went to Disneyland, we were at the park for eight hours and we went on five rides.

I love rental strollers! I'm just not sure what we're going to do with all our stuff when the kids are finally too big to ride in them! My children will become sherpas, mwah ha ha!

So there it is. We had a great time, the weather was perfect and our entire tax refund is gone. What more can you ask from a family vacation?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

California has everything - Part II

While we were visiting Grampa and M (in Oxnard), we stuck pretty close to the house. Fortunately for us, the house has an amazing backyard and right across the street is this: (the orange hat at the top is Graeme)

This is the coolest pirate park ever and it's brand new! I think the kids would have lived here if we'd let them! Here's Chloe in her new bedroom (hee, hee).

Here's Kai riding a sea horse. I love his intense concentration!

Right next to the playground is this wonderful park. We kicked a ball around.....

Flew a kite.......

Hula hooped....

And rested.

Of course, no trip to California is complete without at least one visit to the beach (which just happens to be right next to the park!) We embrace the ocean...

Ahhhhh! Run away!
Digging in the sand.

Becoming one with the sand. Honestly, I was astonished that there was any sand left on the beach after Kai was done!

I think the huge smile on his face says it all, we had a blast! And you'd think after all this fun we'd be ready to go home. No such luck! We went to Disneyland!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

California has everything!

Well, we survived the trip. Barely. 16 hours down and 13 back (in a very clean van) and we all survived. Of course, there was a week in between the down and back, thank goodness! I have to admit, I had a great time. The weather was perfect and the kids were reasonably well behaved. We took about 400 pictures (which is a record for us!) and an hour or two of video. Don't worry, I won't post them all. At least not all at once.

I have to start with Easter because I made Chloe's dress and it actually looks just like the pattern! Of course, the boys have new Easter clothes too, but I didn't make them so they only count a little.

This is the back of Chloe's dress and part of an amazing Easter egg hunt.

What a bunch of hams (and Chloe's Easter dress)!

Okay, enough with the Easter dress. Here are the kids on the back of Grampa's boat (parked in the backyard, incidentally). Please note the sun and lack of snow.

Kids coming down to the dock.

This really was an awesome Easter egg hunt. The kids got buckets full of candy and toys and then they got to go hunt inside and out for more candy-filled eggs. Please note the flowers, bushes, etc and lack of snow.

Here's the best part: after all of that other stuff, they got to go in the dinghy with Grampa and fish eggs out of the harbor (in the backyard)! And still NO SNOW!

Well, I have lots more but the kids are clamoring for the computer so......


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I was wrong

I was wrong. It rained this morning instead of last night. But I was right about the quantity of rain (just enough to leave big dirty spots all over the fresh wax job). And I do feel much better about the whole tip thing.
And, at least it's not snow.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tonight it will rain

Tonight it will rain. Do you want to know why? Because we just spent a small fortune getting our van detailed. (I'm not sure why it's called "detailing", maybe it's because they give you an incredibly "detailed" bill when they're done fleecing you, but I digress...) Anyway, we had to spend a small fortune because it was, without a doubt, the dirtiest, most disgusting vehicle on the road. (I'm sure there are some dirtier and more disgusting vehicles in junkyards, but of those still in use, ours took the cake. But I digress again...)

It really cracked me up when the very nice attendant walked up to me with a big smile on his face and told me how much fun they had cleaning the van. Here's what he said:
"We had a lot of fun cleaning your van!" Here's what he meant:
"Holy crap, you people are a bunch of slobs!"
I sincerely apologized for the disgusting state of my van. Here's what he said:
"Don't worry, there's always a worse van!" Here's what he meant:
"But I've never seen it! Really! Slobs!"

Then he proceded to explain in great detail what they did to my poor, neglected vehicle. I have to admit, it looks brand new. I wish I had taken before and after pictures because you would fall off your chair in astonishment! And then there's the smell! That poor van had been puked, peed and pooped in, not to mention the spilled food and the bag of frozen chicken breasts that I forgot was there for about a week. In the middle of summer. You know, we really did our best to clean after each mess, but I was starting to wonder if some small animal had crawled inside and died.
In fact, the very nice attendant made sure to emphasize to me that they not only CLEANED all the plastic in the van, they SCRUBBED it. They cleaned, polished, vacuumed, shampooed and hand waxed my baby. And not only does it look good, it smells fantastic!

Now, I know that he was telling me all this so that I would express my appreciation in a very tangible, monetary way, BUT it did take them two hours longer than they said it would AND we had just spent a small fortune on the process in the first place.

So, no tip.

Of course, on the way home I discovered that they had fixed our glove compartment which has been broken for weeks, and I was filled with guilt and remorse. So if I'm lucky, tonight it will rain just enough to make the outside of my van look awful and I will feel properly chastened but my van will still be clean where it really counts. On the inside, where we will sit for sixteen hours straight on our trip to California, of course.

Sorry about the rain.