Tuesday, November 29, 2011


So things have been absolutely crazy around here the past two weeks!  When Big-Bug's school break started two weeks ago, we packed up the car and took the boys for their first trip to Disneyland :)  We decided to drive so we would have more control about rest periods, meal times and potty breaks and we were really glad we went that route.  We made it to Sacramento our first day of driving and then were able to make it to Anaheim by about 3:30 in the afternoon the following day.  That first evening we explored downtown Disney (which was new to me!) and enjoyed dinner at the Rainforest Cafe.  The boys declared it to be "the best restaurant in the world." After dinner we spent some time in the gigantic Lego store where the boys each made a custom mini, it was super fun!

Some of the highlights from the actual Disney park days were the Buzz Lightyear astro-blasters (which we had to ride twice,) star tours (which the big boys had to ride twice as well) and the pirate's lair on tom sawyer island!  I think the boys could have spent the entire three days running around the pirates lair and would have been perfectly contented :)  We also watched the Jedi training academy, which was a fantastic show and enjoyed some mandatory churros!  We had some amazing luck meeting the actual Disney characters themselves; time and time again we were in the right place at the right time.  We were able to get photos of the kids with Mickey and Minnie, Donald Duck, Pluto, Goofy, Rabbit, Tigger and Eeyor and Mr Incredible! We also saw one of tinkerbell's fairy friends (who Big-Bug informed me is named Vidia) and she waved to the boys - but the meet and greet line was 45 minutes long (!!!) so we decided to pass her by :)

The first night we came back to the park after dinner to watch the holiday firework show.  We had a great view of the fireworks going off above the castle (which was all decorated for Christmas) and when the show ended it suddenly started snowing all up and down the main street of Disneyland.  It was fake snow of course, but the kids didn't know the difference and it was so sweet to see the faces of all the little ones as they gazed up at the snowflakes and tried to catch them :)  That was definitely some tangible "Disney magic" and you could have heard a pin drop in the crowd, even the adults were swept up in the spirit of it all.

On the second night we left Disneyland and took the kiddos to a surprise dinner at Medieval times! This turned out to be the favorite part of the whole trip for my husband and myself.  The acting and horsemanship was unbelievably amazing (and the "feast" was delicious as well!) I would 100% go back to Medieval times again (in fact, I can't wait to go again!)  The boys loved it too and were completely swept up in to the fantasy of it all - I genuinely think they believe they met real knights :)

On our third and final night in Disneyland we watched the holiday parade.  We ended up with great seats right in the front row and the parade was fantastic! Baby-Bug was hollering out and pointing to different characters as they passed by "mick mouse!" "buzz bybeer!" and Big-Bug and Middle-Bug were amazed by the marching toy soldiers and bouncing snowmen :)  We stayed late that third night finishing up some rides in California Adventure and said a fond farewell to the castle on our way back to the hotel.

After two more days on the road (and a lot of holiday traffic!) we arrived back home the night before Thanksgiving.  We spent a quiet holiday at home and enjoyed a traditional turkey dinner, just the five of us.  I made my first-ever batch of homemade dinner rolls and was very proud of them :)

That night I headed into work at 11pm to be ready for our store's midnight opening for the black Friday sales.  It was an interesting experience for me, having never worked or shopped black Friday before - but I don't need to do it again :)  Working a ten hour night shift when you are used to working days is a hard adjustment! (Especially hard when the break room is stocked with tang instead of coffee!!!  Tang?! Really?!)

So now we are trying to catch up from all the business of the past two weeks (lots of laundry waiting for me!) and we are settling back into the school routine.  My husband has a business trip this week, and I am putting on a Family Fun Night at Big-Bug's school on Friday, then it's Baby-Bug's second birthday and Christmas soon after...so December is going to be another fun, busy month!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Early Morning Games with Baby-Bug

This morning Baby-Bug managed to take down the baby gate that normally keeps him out of the main living area of the house during the night.  Since he is a pro at unlocking and opening the doors, we like to have some extra security insuring he is not doing any traveling while we are sleeping at night! I guess those peaceful nights have come to an end!

Luckily, after he removed his baby-gate, he just came in to say good morning to us and snuggle a little.  While we were lounging around, Baby-Bug started playing the silliest little game.  He would point to me and ask "what your name?" "My name is Mommy," I would respond "What's your name?"  He would grin really big and say "My name ummmm.....PIZZA!" We went through this exchange probably two dozen times and it was so hilarious!

Later this evening I was changing his diaper and he looked up at me and asked "What's your name?" "My name is Mommy," I told him "what's your name?"  "My name ummmm.....HOT DOG!" he said, then he started over again "My name ummmm.....PIZZA!" he said the second time, then started in again.  "My name ummmm....HAT!" he said the third time.  Then he pulled his ball cap over his face, peeked out and shouted "PEAK A BOO!"

It is so much fun to see more and more of his personality as he gets older. He has such a sense of humor! :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Feed the Birds

Earlier this week one of the mommies in our play group hosted a bird feeder making play date for the kids.  We weren't able to attend, and I was so disappointed!  I asked my friend if she would share her directions with me so I could still do the craft at home with the boys and she showed up this morning with not only the directions (which were super cute!) but also an entire kit of supplies all the way down to pre-cut ribbon for hanging the finished feeders!  She is so thoughtful!

So this afternoon I set the card table up on our patio and the kiddos got to work making bird feeders and selecting which branches to hang them on (we only have one tree in our yard and one large lilac bush, so their options were limited haha!)  They really go into it and have been sitting in the yard ever since, waiting for the birds to come ;-)

It was a prefect fall day to play outside!  Chilly, but beautiful.

Halloween was a Blast!

This year we had the ultimate halloween experience (meaning it stretched for days and days! haha)  We started the festivities with an All Saints carnival at church, which was the boys' first "real" carnival experience.  They had so much fun fishing for prizes, tossing bean bags and participating in a "sucker walk." There was even a station to decorate your own sugar cookies, which the boys really got into.  Middle-Bug was a little intense about his frosting, he had to make sure it was perfectly smooth and completely covered his cookie, so he sat at the table for a long time working on his masterpiece!

After church the next morning we attended a traditional halloween party at a friend's home.  She invited a lot of the families from our play group, so the kids had a ton of fun with their buddies and the adults had a ton of fun visiting too!  There were some yummy snacks at the party (as always with our group!) A delicious cabbage salad, adorable jackolantern quesadillas, home made bat shaped tortilla chips and or course - my monster eyeball deviled eggs ;-)

Amidst all the celebration, we also found time to carve our pumpkins!  This year was a lot of fun because we let the older boys draw a face on their pumpkin and then we cut the face out for them like a stencil.  Their creations ended up super adorable!  Baby-bug got really into the fun and seriously enjoyed munching on the carving scraps....it must have been tasty!

On Halloween day Big-Bug went off to school while I took Middle-Bug and Baby-Bug to a play date in their costumes :)  It was so much fun to see all the other little ones all dressed up!  That night we took the boys for some mandatory trick-or-treating.  They had so much fun and Baby-Bug was hilarious.  Once he understood the concept (knock, say trick or treat, get candy) he was extremely enthusiastic!  He said "trick or treat" at every house and would holler "THANK YOU!" or "Happy Halloweeeeeeen!" as we walked away.  Adorable!

A nice, dark, foggy night for trick or treating!

We let the boys enjoy their candy for a few days and then we told them about the "switch fairy" who is building a castle out of candy and will trade kids a surprise for their halloween candy.  The boys thought that sounded fantastic (although Middle-Bug had a few reservations) and that night they left their candy buckets on the front porch for the fairy to the find.  In the morning they ran out to the porch to find their candy was gone and they each had a new transformer instead as well as a copy of "Rio" for the three of them to share.  It worked out really well, so well in fact we are going to try leaving the buckets out the night after halloween next year :)