Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Disney 2

(Can you believe Amelia went and sat in his lap?)

Tuesday, we went to the Animal Kingdom. I both liked it because it was like a zoo and disliked it because it was like a zoo. We're zoo people and with being "Friends of the Zoo" members we have gone to lots of zoo for free. I think I was expecting it to be the best zoo ever, but we have been to the San Diego zoo, so I guess that is one of the best zoos ever. The animal part of it was pretty much just a regular zoo (unless you don't go to zoos much and then it would be exceptional :) Don't get me wrong, I still liked the park and Isabella especially loves animals, so she loved it. Trust me, she'd go to our local zoo a couple times a week and still not get bored. Kenny did get to ride the Expedition Everest ride and said that was good, I didn't get to ride it (sniff, sniff), but I'm not into riding rides by myself -- Isabella wanted to ride it, but was too little. She probably would have liked it too, she loves roller coasters. I won't post pictures of the safari ride, but it was alot of fun. I'm surprised I actually got some pictures of the animals because you are really bouncing around in the jeep. The first time we rode it the guy was great, really fitting the part of the safari driver, the next time (which was on Thurs with my parents) the guy was monotone and boring, which actually made it entertaining in its own right. We were watching some video last night from that Thursday and laughing at how the guy sounds on video. We, of course, saw more characters, my girls really were into seeing the characters. If you don't want to see them, don't point them out. My girls wanted to see Eeyore, which also meant seeing Tigger and Pooh again. Of course, this time we only waited a few minutes to see them. :) Eeyore had horrible penmanship and when we saw him later in the week Isabella said "Oh no, Mommy, Eeyore can't write very good."
We saw Minnie again, her line wasn't long so I agreed the girls could go see her again. We also saw Pocahontas, a very white Pocahontas, which much have confused everyone because we had no one in front of us to see her. :) The parade was great, as are all of Disney parades. Isabella loved trying to get the characters to give her five. We got to talk to a nice older couple that I could tell were enjoying watching the girls have fun. I thought it was kind of cute that an older couple would be there by themselves. I can see that being Kenny and I -- in another 40 years. :) Even if you are not into animals, or you don't feel like going on a safari ride, go to the Animal Kingdom for at least the shows. Oh my, were they spectacular. The Lion King show was full of all kinds of fun things, I'll only post a few pics. Isabella loved the acrobatics. Amelia liked it, but was a little unsure of some of it because we were up front and the show isn't done on a stage its done right in the middle of the floor with bleachers sitting around it.

I asked my girls what their favorite part of Animal Kingdom was and Amelia said "Newo show" and Isabella also said "The Finding Nemo Show." I would have to agree, that was my favorite part as well. Isabella said the Lion King show was next - so if kids are telling you the shows are better than the animals, you know they're good. We all just absolutely loved "Finding Nemo: The Musical" -- the other stuff was good, but this was great. It was like a Broadway show (nothing at all like the shows they put on at Hollywood Studios) and just really amazing. These pictures aren't great, but we were in the second section up -- so using a zoom lens and not being allowed to use a flash gives a little bit of blurry results, but I still wanted to post some.

Honestly, I personally would pick the shows over anything else at that park. So make sure if you're going, don't miss them. Well, unless you just really hate shows in general, then just disregard my recommendation. :) We actually didn't do everything at Animal Kingdom that day, on the off season it closes at 5, so its a short day already. Then we decided to take some time to go eat at Rainforest Cafe, which the girls loved (after they got used to the noises.) I also had promised to take them swimming that night so we saved a couple things to do for when Papa and Noni were going to be with us. Lots of fun though --- now Isabella is walking around singing "big, blue world...."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Many of you have already seen some of our pics on Facebook, but I haven't had a chance to update my blog. Really, how in the world am I supposed to post a couple hundred pictures??? And since I really can't, how am I supposed to choose my favorites? Right now, my girls are eating lunch and since I have parts of the stomach bug lingering, I've eaten my daily piece of toast (the only thing that seems to stay in) so I decided I should take some time to at least start on our trip to Disney.

We had a WONDERFUL time. I wish we were still there. :) Isabella said she wanted to stay 20 days and today they were pretending that they were doing just that. Everything was just perfect. I know you may think I'm crazy when I say this, but we really had a blessed time while we were there. Before we left and I was in the midst of the craziness of planning, organizing, sewing, packing... a little bit of stress, I had prayed that while we were there we would have a great time as a family and that we would have a Christ filled week. I just knew that Disney is a busy place, that there are also shops at every corner for the girls to get the "I want" syndrome, and for Kenny and I to get the "Its their only time at Disney...." syndrome in return. And we really didn't need to go down there just to go crazy spending money on stuff. I also know that it is DISNEY and it was our FIRST time there so I am the kind of person that wants everything to be perfect, I don't want to miss anything, which could mean not taking time to just enjoy ourselves, to take time to miss things just to have fun as a family. I don't even know if I can explain it, I just wanted our focus to still be right even at Disney.

And let me tell you, God answered my prayers in so many ways. First off, we decided to leave Saturday so we could have the whole day on Sunday at the park, rather than having to get up early, stressing everyone out by driving 8 hours and then going to the park. We were staying at a Disney resort starting on Sunday, but Saturday we decided to make reservations at a cheap hotel. I was pretty excited, I booked a room for $49 at Comfort Inn and it included a breakfast -- yay, an answer to prayer that we would be able to do this and inexpensively. Well, when we got to our hotel, rather late, Kenny went and checked in and came out and told me "The guy said they don't have a room for us here, they overbooked........ BUT he told me that they did have a room for us over at a nicer hotel, and they would pay for it." Woo hoo! Free is even better than inexpensive. :) Kenny said that the hotel clerk told him that the person before us cussed up a storm at him that this had happened. I felt bad for the hotel clerk, he had probably been stewing the last few hours worried about having to get screamed and cussed at again. Obviously, Kenny was nice to him and told us "Are you kidding, we're all about free, this is a blessing." Great way to start off our vacation.

We got to our resort Sunday morning, checked in and then went to the Magic Kingdom. Honestly, it really is magical -- we walk in and see lines to see some of the characters, we start walking down Main Street and a show off the trolly car started, then of course you get the first glimpse of the castle- which is fun for the girls. Amelia said the first thing she wanted to do was "see 'Cin-ce lala's' castle" and Isabella's was to ride the tea cup ride, so naturally we pass through the castle and head back to the tea cups. After the tea cups, the girls were ready to start filling out their autograph books so they wanted to wait in line for Pooh and Tigger. We saw lots, LOTS of characters during the week, for some reason this was the only line that took a while, at least 30 minutes, but the girls were bound and determined to get that first autograph. :) We then were able to see the afternoon show at the castle, which was great. Amelia loved seeing her favorite princess, Snow White. There were alot of characters in the show, but I won't upload all the pictures. :)

After spending time there until dinner time, we decided to go back to our resort, ate dinner and then gave the girls a late nap. We found out that Sunday night from 9-midnight was open only for resort guests so we thought maybe we could get in a couple late hours if we put the girls down late for a nap. Worked like a charm. The girls did great, they're much more of night owls than morning people anyway, but we went back, rode almost every ride, and stayed out til midnight. If you ever go, take advantage of the extra morning or night hours, it was perfect. The only bad thing about that day, I left our video camera on the bus in the midst of getting our stuff off. So, not the best thing to do to start off the vacation, .... thankfully, there are honest people left in the world and it was returned and we got it from lost and found on Tuesday night. (I say WE, but actually Kenny had to hassle with trying to contact and find lost and found while I took the girls swimming Tuesday night :) Praise the Lord for that, not the fanciest video camera, but it still would cost us to replace it and it did have my girls screaming like crazy about being at Disney World. :)

Monday, we got a later start (obviously after being out until midnight) and we spent a few hours over at the Magic Kingdom again going to the one area we missed, seeing some more characters. The next thing on Isabella's list of things she HAD to do was go to Pixie Hollow and shrink down like a fairy. So we headed back to Toon Town, we first saw the princesses (line was shorter, so I went with the girls and daddy waited in line for the fairies - such a good daddy.) Isabella bought the whole shrinking down like a fairy just perfectly. They had given me a really tiny photo pass card and when we got into Pixie Hollow I showed it to her and she couldn't believe my card shrunk so much. Then when we got out, I showed her the original one - she loved that. She didn't understand why Tinkerbell was taller than her though, we tried to explain that Tinkerbell was older than her.... I think that worked for now.

That afternoon we headed over to Epcot and found out that we like that park, although so many people said there wasn't much there for toddlers -- they were wrong, our girls liked it and so did we. A few weeks before we left, I had made reservations for us to have dinner with the Princesses. When I called there were only a couple different times left that we could do this. For the one we chose they said Alice in Wonderland, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, Pocahontas & Jasmine were going to be there. Sleeping Beauty and Belle my girls like, Pocahontas they had never seen, Jasmine wasn't a favorite... but Alice, that is Isabella's favorite. I was so excited about that. The lady did tell me that the "princesses could change without any notice..." I was disappointed that they didn't mention Snow White. Although Amelia had only seen Snow White once, she constantly talked about seeing her. When I told them we would be eating with the princesses she immediately said "We see Snow White?!" I had actually prayed about it, no not fasting type of prayers, but just "it would be so nice if Snow White could be there too for Amelia to be excited." I know, go ahead and call me corny or tell me that it is ridiculus to pray about a Disney character. I realize that, but God already knows my heart, so He knew what I was thinking, so why not tell Him and just in the every day talking to Him, it came up. :) When we saw the couple princesses earlier in the day the lady was talking about the girls dresses and I mentioned that I let them pick out what princess they wanted mommy to sew on their dress and that Isabella was supposedly going to be eating with Alice tonight. The lady said "I don't know, I don't think Alice is supposed to be there, she's ...." I don't remember where she said, but I thought "Oh no, Isabella is sure she's meeting Alice tonight, stupid, stupid mommy for mentioning that. Oh I hope she's still going to be there." Then I realized how silly I was being and just thought that my girls would have fun no matter who showed up, it was dinner with Disney princesses for goodness sake. :) And they did they had a great time. The first princess they saw was Belle, which I laughed at how well they "stay in character" - she was obviously not the Belle from earlier in the day, but Isabella didn't realize that. She went up to her and hugged her and said "I remember you, I saw you today." and Belle said "I remember you too!" Then they saw Sleeping Beauty, and then:
YAY! Alice was there! Isabella was beyond excited, she couldn't wait for her to get to our table. I LOVE this picture! Isabella was just talking today about how Alice kissed her cheek and told her to look out for the rabbit. The girls barely nibbled on their food watching the princesses come in, Amelia then said "Snow White" and I thought she was asking if she was going to see her and then she said "Snow White!" and there she was.... can I just tell you how foolish I felt as my eyes welled up with tears. I mean, come on people, its a fictional character. :) But I still got all choked up, to think that God is concerned about even the silly things in life. To realize that He likes us to Joy in Him even through the Joy of our children. I really can't explain it because it still seems so simple and silly. Would we have had a good time if Snow White wasn't there? Yes. Would Amelia have been disappointed? Probably, but we probably could have found Snow White later. Was it made obvious to me that God loves even simple joys of my children? Yes! We were even told by "Sleeping Beauty" -- "Oh I see you girls love Alice and Snow White, you're lucky girls they are both here tonight, they're never here together." :) I'll have to add more pictures later and talk about some of our other days, but I have to tell you the biggest blessing and Christ filled event of the week. Thursday we had spent the day at Animal Kingdom and then Hollywood Studios with my parents. We decided to come back to the resort to eat, then maybe go over to Epcot or somewhere later. We never made it to another park. We ate at the resort, walked around some and then went to the resort store. While we were there, Kenny got a call on his phone. I thought maybe it was his family or something, but then I got bits and pieces of what he was saying. One of our teen boys, (he's probably been in our teen group for less than a year, he's the boyfriend of one of our teen girls) had called him because he had questions about getting saved. I don't know what exactly Jake said maybe like he said he could talk to him later, but Kenny said "Man, I'm in Florida, but I sure don't want to wait until I get home..." So right there in the store, Kenny was able to share Bible verses and lead Jake to the Lord. What a HUGE blessing!!! Obviously, this is nothing of ourselves, this is all of God. It was just a blessing to us that God would even use Kenny to talk to Jake. I told Kenny that God knew even where we needed to be, what if we had been in a loud part of the park and Kenny didn't hear the phone or couldn't answer it, what if we were getting on a ride and he thought he could call him later.... God had him exactly where He wanted him to be. Praise the Lord! It was such a shot in the arm for me. Our church is going through some crazy stuff and I don't know what God is going to do, but my husband has just been faithful to serve the Lord and work with the teens and its been worth it for this. I'm so thankful that God would use my husband and that my husband is always willing to be used. What a great thing to happen on vacation, right? See, I told you Christ filled! Oh, but Satan tried to have his minuscule hand in it, on the last day we were there we had our $14 (because mommy forgot it and we had to buy some at Disney) bottle of sunscreen stolen. But we were too happy to let that bother us, laugh that someone would actually steal that but have our video camera returned, yes, but get us down... no way.

I'll post more pictures with less stories tomorrow. Its taken me longer to get this actually accomplished between lunch, clean up, nap times....... but I wanted to make sure I got something put up.

Friday, February 06, 2009

We're Off!

I really thought I would get around to updating my blog before we left, but no such luck. Two twirly skorts, 2 tanks, 2 capris, 2 bandana pants, 2 extensively appliqued dresses, 4 embroidered shirts, an ariel clippie, a belle clippie, 4 ribbon headbands, 2 mickey and 2 minnie hair clippies, painted shoes (hadn't done that one before, but LOVE them) a skirt and headband for me (that's a new one I NEVER make myself anything) and lots of packing and now I'm ready to go. I still have to clean my house up so that I don't come home and right away have to scrub the toilets and vacuum the floors. We're so excited! I think we're all bouncing off the walls ready to go on vacation. Isabella has kept us laughing with some of the things she has said. I think she truly believes she is going to be marching in some parade singing with the group from High School Musical. And she really is believing that we are shrinking to the size of Tinkerbell while we're in Pixie Hollow. We've also been told that the first thing she wants to do is ride the tea cup ride.

One of the things that really cracked me up with Isabella: I don't like Hannah Montana. I just don't and can't be convinced otherwise, sorry. I realize this might in some way seem hypocritical as I do love High School Musical and I took Isabella on a mommy date to see the last one, but that has more to do with my own personal obsession with musicals. :) Anyway, Isabella had gotten a candy bracelet that was Hannah Montana from someone and she was looking at the package and said "Oh, no, oh no, Hannah Montana lives at Disney World, mommy." I told her that no she doesn't live there and I doubt we would see her and she said "Phew, that was a close one." She's a nut.

Amelia mainly keeps talking about seeing Snow White, "Cin-ce-lala" and Mi Mi Mouse. She says "I see Mi Mi Mouse and I go "Hi Mi Mi Mouse." I wish you could hear her cute little voice say it. :) I think the fact that I'm going to let her wear a princess fru fru dress out in public one night will be the best thing ever for her.

Also, my parents have decided to come down for a couple days. Actually, they left today go to my uncle and aunt's house in Naples and then they are going to come up for Wednesday and Thursday. My girls don't know this yet. We're either going to tell them the night before or wait and let them be surprised when they see them on Wednesday.

So, as Disney says (everytime I've called) have a "Magical" week while I'm gone and I'm sure to have lots of fun to tell you about when we get home.