Friday, December 31, 2010

It's Just What I Always Wanted....kind of

This year there seemed to be a lot of funny gifts given at our various celebrations. Sure, most were normal, fabulous, well thought out gifts, (Kids with Santa gifts: Star Wars Legos, Care Bears to love, and a Zhu Zhu pet track)

but what fun would it be to go through those? I am here to share the truly awesome:

Our gift to Dad. It took Dad a little while, and some mistified looks before I explained what this was...any guesses?

This may have been a little self serving, to give your wife mistletoe, but the true kicker is that it suction cups to my head. Awesome.

Dad got another funny one. See if you can tell how the Chinese version differs slightly from our American one.

My Grandma Donna is know for her amazingly funny gifts (Eric wrote a whole song about them) and I just had to laugh when I saw this. It is ONE Child Identification Kit.
Eric and I are still discussing which child we like the most so we can use it on that one.

The piece-de-resistance.
In his defence, Ryan didn't know Jared was coming until about a week before Christmas, and when he did know Jared wouldn't respond to texts or emails about what he wanted, so Ryan improvised.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Reason 2,568,997 I LOVE Disneyland, or Ariel Rocks!

Oh Disneyland, how do I love thee, let me count the one thousand, two one thousand....
One of the things that made this trip awesome was that it was the torrential rain and so nobody was in the park. We were able to walk on most rides and were able to go on everything that we wanted, lots of them more than once! We did have to plan ahead and buy rain gear before we got to Down Town Disney (or we would have spent twice as much) but for the most part we stayed nice and dry, just a little bulky.

This was such a fun trip to Disneyland because we tried so many new things. It was just our little family and my mom so we were able to do things for the kids and not worry that we were boring 7 other adults. We found some new gems that I hope we continue to do every time!
Just a note: They have "cast members" (employees) that have special pins on their jackets that show they are character experts. I learned that the Beast's real name is Adam. Go figure.

We ate lunch in the Golden Horse Shoe, which we had never done. The food was fried, but the entertainment they put on was very funny. The inside is beautifully done as a theatre, and we got prime seats in the balcony.
While the brave 3, Mom, Eric, and Ella, went on Splash Mountain.... (like we needed to have more water poured on us) Ethan, Livi and I explored the candy shop right at the exit. We tried their mini cupcakes and (take note Jes) they have the most amazing dipped marshmallows. I got the kind dipped in caramel, and then dipped in chocolate. Delicious.

While the big kids went with Eric on Matterhorn we took Livi to Toontown to meet "Mihee Mouse." She is just in love with Mickey Mouse so we thought it would be fun. Normally the line to meet him in his house takes FOREVER, but because no one was there we were able to walk through the house, meet Goofy and Minnie too, and then go right up and meet the big mouse himself. Livi was in heaven and still gets excited when she sees the pictures.

Also new for us, in Frontier land they had turned an area into Santa's Home. They had all 8 reindeer, and a keeper we could ask questions to. Santa had the cutest decorated little cottage and Ella waited in a short line to tell him what she wanted for Christmas. He was the best Santa I have ever seen in person.

But the thing that TRULY made this my favorite trip to Disneyland was going to see the princesses. We have never done this because the line is normally 2 hours long, but this time it was only an hour, so we braved it because Ella really wanted to meet them. It was finally our turn and she was so excited she ran over to Ariel, slipped on the wet stones, and fell hard on the ground. Ariel picked up her dress and RAN over to Ella, hugging her and soothing her, all in character. My favorite line was "I slip all the time while I have my human legs."
She spent 10 minutes just talking to Ella and making sure she was ok, the whole while keeping everyone in line waiting, just for my little girl. She wrote a long note to Ella in her autograph book, asked about what she wanted for Christmas and then they did a special princess handshake to promise to be best friends forever. I cried. It was so sweet that she would take so much notice and care to be sure that Ella had a good experience. Thank you Disney for employing such wonderful princesses.
I just included this picture because I like the look on Ethan's face. It's like he is expecting the horse to break and come crashing down at any minute!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Very Hobbit Christmas... or 4 Christmases

It's been a crazy couple of weeks, but we are finally back, and almost functioning at 50%. We've had a busy Christmas season with all sorts of fun (craziness), but for this post I am just mentioning the 4 celebrations we were able to take part of.
We started on the 12th with a dinner and present exchange with the Bagleys. We ate a ton, and it really started to feel like Christmas.

In California we able to spend time with both our families on Christmas morning (although since Jared wasn't up until 9:45 it was a good thing we did the actual morning at my parents and went to Stotts for mid-morning). All of my siblings were at their in-laws so we were the only ones with my parents. It was weird and shorter than usual, but we had a great time anyways and it was fun to have Grandma and Grandpa with us enjoyed the kids' enthusiasm. Around 10 we headed to Stotts and waited for Jared :) When we all ready we opened presents one by one for the first time and it was fun to see what everyone got. Joan and Alan were nice enough to get us a Wii (yes, I finally gave in) and everyone had a fun time playing with it, until the Laker game came on. We finally got home very early Tuesday morning (thanks east coast storm for delaying everything) so Tuesday evening we finally were able to open the gifts I had left here in Nebraska. All day Tuesday I heard lots of whining about "Can't we open our gifts yet?" "What time does Dad get home?" and my least favorite "Let me open just ooooonnnnneeee!" When the kids were finally able to open the long awaited gifts the dug in with so much enthusiasm there was paper all over the living room.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Little Lithe Livi

I've been meaning to post this video for a few days, but I had to swallow my pride first. Livi is adorable and funny while she dances, but she had just eaten and I had to take off her clothes, so she looks like a rag-a-muffin. Also I had been working on roman blinds for the kids rooms so all my sewing stuff if strewn about. If you can get past how messy my house was and how dirty Livi looked, then by all means, click and watch the video. If you can't, and you will be forced to judge me then don't click on it and next time you see us I'll act it out for you. Totally worth it not to be judged!
p.s. My favorite parts are when she runs over intermittently to get a snack of frosted flakes, and when when spanks her own bottom (thanks to Ethan for teaching her that move).