Monday, July 20, 2009

World Travelers!

Disney World that is. Yes, we spent and entire 8 days and 7 nights at the Walt Disney World Resort. Aside from the blister that formed on my foot the last day, we managed to survive the "happiest place on earth." As some of you know, we kept this vacation a secret from the kids. They knew we were going on vacation, but just didn't know where. Mimmy of course spilled the beans (pun intended) and told them we were going to the lima bean farm. And for those of you who don't get the humor, it is because you don't fully understand the disdain my children have for lima beans...I threw in an extra detail...lima beans with a side of baked beans. My chitlens of course didn't fall for the lima bean farm like Brooke did (who was utterly disappointed to find out we didn't go there). They did however fall for the fake "slip-up" from dear old Dad. Who mentioned a trip up to the mountains. By Sunday (the day we left), they were certain they were in for a long 10 hour ride to the mountains following church services. It wasn't until we crossed under the big Disney World sign within the resort that Abbey started to wonder.

We had a wonderfully exhausting trip. And I did manage to take well over 100 photos (which is major progress for me). However, it will take me the better part of next year to upload all of them. So I will just leave you with some of our favorites.

Since this is our third or fourth trip to Disney with the kids, we feel we have become somewhat of an expert in "World Traveling". So my next post will be the Do's and Don'ts of WDW! Stay tuned!

My kids were finally tall enough this year to ride on some of the "big kid" rides, ie. Tower of Terror, Test Track, Dinosaurs, Space Mountain, Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain...anything with a 44" and lower height requirement. Unfortunately, Space Mountain was closed for refurbishing, but we went on all the rest of them. Probably the scariest would be Tower of Terror. I think that was actually my favorite ride. Brady was the most scared of this ride, he didn't really want to go on it, but we all talked him into it. Abbey was really excited about it. This was our first park day of the trip and she was bound and determined to go on some big roller coasters. Tower of Terror at Hollywood Studios is based on the twilight zone theme. So it is a big scary haunted mansion. None of these things were sitting well with Brady, but he did it. Now for those of you who have never been on this ride, I will give you a little background. You are taken into an elevator looking room that has probably 4-6 rows of stadium style seating (4 people per row). You have a seat belt that goes across your lap. And you basically are hoisted up this tower, elevator style, where you are then dropped (free falling) and then raised back up and dropped again for several minutes. During this ride, you are in the dark except for the occasional times when windows on the tower open up and you look across the whole park and see how high up you are. So for our first experience ever, where do you think we were seated. Yep, you guessed it. Front Row! Nobody in front of us to block the view from the windows. Just us and the windows in front of us. Brady had a death grip on Matthew the whole time, Abbey screamed and screamed. It was by far, the scariest ride the kids had ever been on. We got off the ride and made it all the way down to the gift shop...because, you know Disney can't possibly let you go through any part of the park without stopping to buy souvenirs, and that's when Brady broke down. SOBBING UNCONTROLLABLY! We pumped him up by telling him how brave he was and he eventually calmed down. If you ask him what he liked least about the ride, it's that his bottom was off the seat when we were falling down. With as scared as he was of the ride, by the end of the week he was talking about going on it again...but I think he knew we weren't going back to Hollywood Studios anymore and he was safe!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Bradyisms at 6 years old

We will be leaving tomorrow after church for a week long vacation. I won't have access to a computer the whole week. So I will leave you with some funny interpretations that Brady has come up with.

Brady: "Can I change into a pack of clothes?"
meaning: "Can I pack a change of clothes?"

Brady: "Mom will you pick out the leprechauns, I don't like them."
meaning: "Mom will you pick out the pecans, I don't like them."
this one was picked up after I started making homemade butter pecan ice cream. He likes the ice cream but not the "leprechauns"!

Brady: "I was past asleep"
meaning: "I was fast asleep"

He has also picked up some big words in his vocabulary. The other day we were driving through a neighborhood looking for rental homes (for my in-laws). This one neighborhood we drove through has a wide range of homes, from small compact patio homes to large expansive estate homes. So of course the kids were commenting the whole time about how gi-normous some of the homes were and how teeny tiny other were. As we were driving out of the subdivision, Brady stated very matter of factly: "Mom, I am really impressed with this neighborhood. I think this would be an excellent place for Nanna and Grandpa to live."

One of my favorite conversations that Brady and I exchange goes a little something like this:

Brady: You're my best Mom!

Me: You're my best boy!

And it's usually completely out of the blue.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

How do I love thee FL...Let me count the ways!

I know you hear me often complain about the heat in FL and the lack of seasonal changes and the humidity that makes for a rough "bad hair" month(s), but there are some really nice advantages to living in the sunshine state!

Friday, Matthew had the day off in honor of the 4th of July. At 10:00 in the morning as we were all still lounging in our PJ's, we decided to be very spontaneous and pack the kids up for a trip to Busch Gardens. Matthew being the planner he is, was stressed to say the least over the fact that we would not be getting there until lunchtime (or later). But he agreed none-the-less, and we started getting everyone ready.

First we had to stop and get gas. Then we had to stop and get some cash out of the ATM, then by the time we got to Tampa it was nearly 12 so we decided to stop for a quick bite at Mickey D's and we finally made to Busch Gardens just a smidge before 1pm. We followed the signs for parking and were directed to the lot located in Lakeland. Okay maybe the lot wasn't THAT FAR from B.G., but it was pretty darn far out! Matthew and I looked at each other and said "Oh my, what have we gotten ourselves into, the day before 4th of July." We loaded up on the sunscreen and caught the tram to the park entrance. We were fully expecting the park to be just wall to wall people...based on where we had to park, but it was surprisingly empty. Well not empty, but just not as packed as we expected.

We made a bee line to the congo river rapids. Since moisture and my hair don't get along too well, I wasn't especially looking forward to our first ride out of the gate being a water ride. I decided if Matthew could put aside his stresses over a completely un-planned trip to B.G. then I would just not worry about the fright wig that would be with me the rest of the day! After a very short wait in line (10-20 minutes) we were loaded on the infamous yellow rafts. Brady and I sat next to each other and Abbey and Matthew sat next to each other. Brady's like me, he's not real keen on having to walk around in wet clothes and shoes, so he was a little apprehensive about the ride. But by the end of the dousing, he was ready to ride it again. And yes, the two people who least like to be wet did get the MOST wet on the ride! But again, I put that stress aside!

We saw and did everything we wanted to and by 6:30, we were ready to eat again. We had a yummy delicious dinner at the Colony Crown House there at B.G. and of course had to get ice cream (and coffee for Matthew) afterwards. We headed home about 9pm, showered and crawled into bed for a good nights sleep! Since we got the fun cards, we will be able to go any time we want before the end of the year.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


We pulled up behind this couple the other day and I just had to get a photo. Sorry the quality is not that great since it was taken with the cell phone!
And yes, those are crutches you are looking at in the woman's lap...on a motorcycle!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Busy June!

So I've been very bad about blogging lately and was reprimanded something fierce today by my non-blogging sister. So I will try to tell you what all we have done this past month. The first week after the kids got out of school my in-laws came into town. We didn't do a whole lot other than just some around town stuff. They will be moving down this month so they had some things to do to prepare for their move. I however did not get any this is a "representation" of how much we enjoyed their visit!

(Nanna holding Abbey and Grandpa holding Brady! Don't they look just like Abbey, Brady, Nanna and Grandpa?)

The next week we went to the beach for my Mom's side of the family reunion that is held every father's day weekend. We had such a great time. The weather was amazing. It actually only rained once the whole weekend and we got to see a funnel cloud off shore with this storm, but the rain only lasted about 5 minutes and then the sun was out again. We got to see many cousins and Aunts and Uncles we haven't seen in months and some we haven't seen in a year or so. Again, I had the camera with us the whole weekend, but I failed to get a single shot! :-( So instead I'll leave you with these tantalizing beach photos!

(This is an actual photo of a sunset over St. Pete Beach, just not the one we actually saw)

Brady and Abbey both got boogie boards for the beach trip. The wind was just strong enough to create some perfect child size surf! Not to mention enough breeze to be able to sit out on the beach for several hours straight without roasting to death! And of course, since Abbey and Brady had boogie boards, all the rest of the kid cousins had to have one too. So we pretty much commandeered a good chunk of the beachfront with the kids and their boards!

(just imagine Brady's face on this kid, and you can see the image I COULD have captured)

And finally, the kids were especially pleased with their totally rad surfer shirts we bought them to help protect their very delicate skin from the blazing Florida sun reflecting off the glowing white sandy shore! We actually made through an entire 4 day weekend with only slight pink cheeks!

(Abbey and Brady with their hip happening surfer shirts, Abbey's hair lightened in the sun!)

So as you can see, although I am a horribly rotten mother who gets too wrapped up in relaxing and enjoying my much needed vacation to remember to bring out the camera, I did remember to lather the kids in so much sunscreen that there is still that coconutty smell lingering on their little melanoma free bodies!