Thursday, November 13, 2008

Crazy Days of Disney

Well, considering we're back WEEKS, I'll give the re-cap. It was a great trip: exhausting, touching, crazy fun, crazy frustrating at moments, and we can't wait to go back. As you'll see from the pictures, the kids were awesome on the plane. Just give Evan a headseat and a TV screen and you won't hear a peep out of him. Abby had fun too, but needed to move around a bit - but she was still a piece of cake as usual.

The day had started at 4:30 am, so we hesitant to start going to any parks that first day. We decided to eat at the Rain Forest Cafe and go Downtown Disney to the Lego Store, etc. and get to bed early. The Rain Forest Cafe freaked Abby out - between the gorillas, and thunder she was nervous. She did pretty good, but every time you heard an ape start to go crazy, she grabbed onto Scott's shirt for dear life. After lunch, she spied sequined Disney ears and asked for them. Of course Scott ran right over and bought them. Unfortunately, they didn't stay on very well, but she did wear them (until she got to make her very own princess crown and that was it for the ears). LOL Evan loved the Lego store and we could barely get him out of there. The kids were very freaked out by characters the first day, but eased up considerably by the next morning.

Our first full day started out great with the Chef Mickey Buffet. Scott and I kept smiling at each other like two idiots - it's so much fun to bring your kids to Disney for the first time. Seeing them at the Magic Kingdom was awesome. Abby warmed up to characters very quickly and had no problem hugging them, etc., while Evan kept his distance until the very end of the trip. Hands down, Evan's favorite ride was the Haunted Mansion - Abby wanted nothing to do with it and so Scott and I switched turns. I think we each rode the Haunted Mansion ride 10-15 times! LOL We didn't care though - we love it too! It was hard to get them on alot of the rides surprisingly - Evan gets very overwhelmed quickly - and it was really hot too. The first day we came back and took a nap, but were just too tired to go back to any of the parks, so we just stayed in the pool and turned in early.

The 2nd day was probably one of my favorites. We slept in, grabbed breakfast and got to the Magic Kingdom around 11 am. We were going to have lunch at Cinderella's castle at 1 pm.. Scott and Evan went on some rides, and Abby and I went into some of the shops while we waited for the boys. Abby saw the "glass" Cinderella slippers and a light up magic wand. She just looked up at me and said, "Mommy, could I please have these?" Of course I just whipped out our room card and she became the proud owner of Cinderella shoes. Abby just thought she was the cat's meow at this point - it was hysterical. Lunch at the castle was amazing. She went right to Cinderella and took great pictures (although you can tell she's a little nervous in them). Evan behaved really nicely through lunch and Abby took pictures with every princess. Scott and I sat there so choked up - it sounds silly, but it's soooo cute and you just can't help it. It was awesome too, because we met another couple on line ahead of us that adopted from China, and there was a group of about 4-5 families that had traveled together sitting across from us that were celebrating their adoption day anniversary. It was so cute to see all these Chinese princesses and how happy they all were. The lunch or dinner at the castle is definitely worth it if you are planning a trip to Disney!!!

Evan loved Indiana Jones and the Star Wars show. Even though he's an outgoing kid, he gets very shy when it comes to volunteering to go up on stage, etc. Scott was a trooper in the heat and stood out in the blaring sun with the kids for the Jedi Training Sessions, I think about 4 times! UGH!

Everything really went well - Evan was either very on or very "off" and difficult - and those times get to you, but then he'd snap out of it and it would get better. We definitely pushed them some days harder then we should have and it was sooo hot. I don't think I'd go back in September again - although lines - What lines? That part was wonderful. We liked everywhere we ate with the food plan and were really glad we did that as well. I liked the hotel, too - maybe if we go back I'd change it up a little, but for our first trip, it was perfect for the kids and the money was right.

We had another great photo-op with Abby and Mulan at Epcot. A fellow FCC Mom, Ann, told me to bring Abby's Mulan costume with us - I'm glad she did because I never would have thought of doing that. When we got to "China" Abby was in her costume and Mulan was outside of the "Temple of Heaven" taking pictures. As soon as she finished, she walked right over to Abby and crouched down with her. She took so many beautiful pictures with Abby, and then Mulan strolled with her all through China. Again, sounds hokey, but I was standing there with tears in my eyes. The pictures came out so amazing. I even wrote a letter to Disney about the girl that played Mulan - she was so sweet to Abby and spent so much time with her. Abby was thrilled beyond belief.

On our last day full day, I was able to very easily convince Abby to do the Bibbity Boppity Salon. This is something relatively new to Disney. The girls can go in and get the hair, nails and makeup done. We bought the "cheapie" package because Abby already had her costume. the other packages are very expensive, and the girls can pick out costumes - and they are the most beautiful dress-up clothes you've ever seen. Just gorgeous. Anyway, Abby picked out hair extensions and was all pampered. When she got out of that chair, I swear, she turned 21. She just thought who she was and it was soo funny. After we got back to the hotel, she stood in front of the mirror, puckering her lips and brushing her hair back. I think we've created a little-diva monster. ;)

The other awesome thing we did was to buy tickets for the "Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party" - I think the tickets were about $40 pp, but worth every penny. You're able to stay at the Magic Kingdom and it's only open for the party. All the characters are dressed up for Halloween - the Haunted House has extra things going on (and you KNOW we rode that! LOL) The kids can trick-or-treat at different stops and they load them up with candy. They have "villian" shows and the parades and fireworks are not to be believed - absolutely awesome. The parade is so good that we watched it a second time. That was our last night there, which was great because we really left on a high note. The kids wore their costumes and we had such a great time.

And so, back to reality...I'm so glad we took the trip - I'm hoping we can get back there in another year or so, but maybe early to mid November - I think it will be just a bit cooler. Other than that, we can't wait to go back! :)

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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sooo behind!

I know, I know - we got back from Orlando WEEKS ago and I still haven't posted. I'm so behind, but I promise, faithful readers (is there anybody left at this point!?) that I will get my act together shortly. Really, I will.


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

We're off to see the Mouse!

Well, we're just about ready here. A few more things to do and then we can relax and go to bed early. The kids are starting to flip out with excitement! We're really looking forward to this - it's our first real family vacation! We'll take lots of pictures and I'll update here when we get back. Scott and I cannot wait to see the kids experiece Disney for the first time!

Hugs to you all.

I have a niece!

I just spoke with my sister, and she received Katie at around 4 pm. I thought she was going to already have had her for hours by now. I finally got through to them around 6, and they were doing well, and had only gotten back to the hotel a few minutes earlier. My sister is having a little trouble feeding her, but luckily my dear friend Vicki is close by and can try to help Jen out. Katie may be stressed, and sometimes the babies won't eat right away. I'm hoping Vicki will get over there sometime later tonight or tomorrow - if I can get pictures today, I'll post them. We're leaving for Disney tomorrow am, and I won't have access to a computer.

My mom said Katie is very, very tiny - 6-9 month clothes, which I thought would be the case. Abby was in the same size as well, although I know Katie is older than her. Katie was smiling when they brought her in the room :)

Congratulations Jen and Rupert, and big brothers Alexander and John-Ryan! We are so happy for you and for Katie too! Welcome to the family Katherine LiLing - we love you!

Well, off to get Evan to school! :)


Monday, September 15, 2008

Katherine Li Ling

Well, it's 8:34 am in China right now, and my sister is just hours from getting Katie. The flight to your child's province feels so much longer than the actual flight to China does. Here's a great link to my sister's blog and to a cute little video that they made of the updated pictures they had received of her.
(Click on "view website")

Wait until you see her hair - it's so adorable!

I can still see every moment of the day I got Abby in my mind, just as I can the day Evan was born. No matter how your children come to you, it's a miracle.

Can't wait to see you with your little miracle, Jen!

I'll post when I know more :)

First Days of School - Sorry so late posting!

Here's Evan in his spiffy "summer uniform". At least they don't have to wear the tie at the beginning and end of the year now - those poor boys just get off the buses so sweaty and gross. Dorky, yes, but much cooler for them so who cares. ;)

I really wanted to put Abby in a cute dress, but I didn't know if they would go outside to play, so I didn't do it...she looked so cute in her size 18 month denim skort though, didn't she? She's so cute and such a little peanut (who corrects you every single time if you say she's small or tiny or whatever - she's a BIG GIRL)( Excuse Me) It's the Napolean complex.

Well, Evan's 1st day went well and he loved his new teacher, Mrs. Baumstein. He originally wanted Sr. Marge, but I think he's really happy with his teacher now. Both 1st grade teachers in the school are fabulous and you can't go wrong. The bus situation was crazy - there is a new driver and he doesn't know the route at all - so he was an hour late for his 1st day of school and it was only half a day. That had continued the whole next week until parents just started flipping out - the guy had no idea where he was going and Evan was on the bus for an hour one day. Now they have a driver that knows what she's doing and things are back to normal.

Abby started school the following week - she's going to nursery three afternoons a week. She couldn't wait to get ready! I was glad that she was so happy about it. She did great - she was a little nervous walking in, so I walked her into the classroom. She gave me a great big kiss and off she went. It was hectic with all the parents, and I was concerned for a friend of mine whose son was hysterical. It didn't hit me until I dropped her off the other day and she practically leaped up the stairs - that my baby is getting big and I'm not ready to let her go. I'm not ready for her to be my last one. I'm not ready to never drop another one off at nursery school for the first time. Ugh, here come the tears - I've gotta go! LOL

Day Before School Breakfast

Notice the pink key in Abby's pocket. She thinks she's sooo cool. She has to push the button on the keychain because it sounds like an alarm. I have to get a picture of her talking on the pink princess cell phone with the hand on her hip. We're in trouble, I tell you.

This year, we started a new tradition. I am taking the kids to Friendly's for breakfast on the last day of summer vacation. The kids love having breakfast there. Abby got pancakes with colored M & M's and Evan got a HUGE pancake that was made into a face - bacon for "ears", whipped cream hair and M & M's for eyes. We had a great morning together - it was a nice "last" day. We were all set for school (especially ME) LOL