Thursday, February 28, 2013

4th place!

Connor had his end-of-year wrestling tournament last Saturday. We got home from Disneyland Friday afternoon and had to be out of the house by 6:30am Saturday to make it to Kingston for the check-in time.

Connor lost his first match (to the kid who ultimately won 1st place in the weight class, and whose dad is the coach of the team he was on), won his next two matches (one of them with a pin), and then lost his last match, which was the match to determine 3rd/4th place. He REALLY wanted 3rd place (would have gotten a medal versus the generic ribbon 4th place+ received), but I'm really proud of his 4th place (out of ten kids in his weight bracket). He missed the first month of practices and worked his little hiney off this season. Way to go, Connor!
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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Enjoying the rides

In no particular order, here are some of the rides we enjoyed during our stay:

Here are my kids, 20-ish minutes into the line for Space Mountain (before we had a clear understanding of the whole Fast Pass deal...), and about 10 minutes before they announced the ride was closed for an undetermined amount of time, at which point we left and came back later with Fast Passes (given to us for being stranded on a different ride!). I love how the Goofy teeth on Connor's hat make him look like he has creepy blank white eyes...
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Em and J on Astro Blasters. This ended up being Thomas's favorite ride from what I could tell. I stunk at shooting the targets (couldn't tell which of the many red laser dots all over the wall were mine in order to know how to adjust my "gun" to aim better)
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A little rain mid-day one of the days didn't slow us down too much (maybe sped us up since this was the least crowded day of our entire visit! ha!). We were damp and a little chilled, but nothing horrible...
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I rocked the Toy Story Midway Mania ride. I had "High Score in your vehicle" (your actual little car shows the score of you and your ride partner--in this picture Jared was my partner, but your "vehicle" has a total of 8 people, and I beat them all! *grin*). The second time we rode, I had High Score again, but I can't find the picture.
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The three little boys were awesome on this ride. You lean in the direction you want your hover tire-thingy to go in order to bump into other people, and they were light enough they flew all over the place! Dan and Em and I hardly went anywhere. Not sure how Tiff and Aaron felt they did.
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Cars Racers ride was a little more intense than I expected! Hair flying all over the place as we were whipping aorund corners and over hills. wow! We rode twice, but I missed out on photographing the monitor of one of the cars from our 2nd ride.
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Thank goodness for Smart Phones making standing in line a little more entertaining! I'll admit to my fair share of this: (thankfully, we'd figured out Fast Passes at this point so lines on the major rides were 20 minutes tops! WOO HOO!)
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Connor's absolute FAVORITE ride was the California Screamin' roller coaster in California Adventure. It goes from 0-60mph in a flash and sends you off on a wild ride, which includes an upside down loop! (in this picture, the loop goes around the sun design which is the smaller circle lit up on the left side). He rode it NINE TIMES (with Dan as his somewhat willing partner in crime. Em and J rode it 4-5 times)
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At one point, the line was ridiculously short so Connor was trying to bypass having to wind around through the empty pathways (lined with metal "fenches") by jumping over them and whacked his shins:
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Just before Star Tours started. HOLY HECK, this ride was a lot more intense than I was expecting! I wasn't entirely convinced my seatbelt was going to hold me! ha! I'm thankful I had my motion sickness patch, but I'll admit it still got a little iffy... BEWARE if you are prone to motion sickness!!!! As an added sidenote: We did this ride twice and the screen was different each time. It's rumored that there are 54 different simulations for this ride; I guess they want you to keep coming back!
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Only a small percentage of the pictures from our trip include any of the adults, and this was actually a pretty decent one, so I thought I'd share it (we were waiting for the Jungle Tours ride, or whatever it's called)
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Stranded and bored on the Sailing Ship Columbia (aka Pirate Ship). For our inconvenience, we were given Fast Passes to be used on any ride at any time that day, which is pretty much how we discovered how awesome Fast Passes were, so all was not lost!
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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Jedi Jared

Waiting for the Star Wars Jedi training show to begin
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Jared was chosen from the audience to take part in the Jedi training! (He's towards the left in the Donald Duck hat)
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Once the kids were trained as Jedi's, Darth Vadar and two Storm Troopers showed up (photo credit to my cousin's husband, Aaron)
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Hot on their heels was Darth Maul (photo credit to Aaron)
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Some kids got to fight Darth Vadar, and some kids got the fight Darth Maul. Jared was in the group that fought Darth Maul
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After defeating the enemy, the kids were lined up to recite a Jedi pledge, then received certificates of completion of Jedi training
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Jared had a really good time, and the guy running the show/training was really funny, so it made it a fun show for the adults, too!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Disneyland Character Sightings

We surprised the kids bright and early Sunday, Feb. 17th with a trip to Disneyland! We surprised them even further by meeting up with my cousin and her husband and son at the airport and spending the week with them while we were at Disneyland.

We only had a half a day Sunday, but didn't waste any time heading into the park. We were barely through the gate when we spotted Sleeping Beauty. My three kids were willing to pose, but Thomas wasn't having anything to do with posing with a princess!
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We saw numerous other characters during our time at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure

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(This isn't exactly a character, but it's a "must have" photo opp!)
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(another photo opp)
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My cousin and her family hadn't made it into the park yet at this point, and Jared was off with Dan gathering up fast passes. Emily and Connor and I thought we were in line to meet Tinkerbell (a favorite of Emily's when she was little, so we stood in line for old time's sake), but it turned out to be Fawn
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My cousin's family had already left the park for the day, but we ran into a family we know from the kids's school and Jared's swim team, so we had fun hanging out with them for a couple of hours
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There's a couple other good ones my cousin's husband took, which I haven't had time to sort through yet...

I'll share more Disneyland pictures throughout the week, I'm sure! *grin*

Friday, February 15, 2013

Valentine's Day boxes

The kids and I spent this past weekend working on their Valentine's Day boxes for school. We knew we wouldn't really have any time during the week, so spent a big chunk of Sunday getting them done.

Connor, of course, went for a monkey theme! (monkeys and vines scattered on the back and both sides, with a bunch of hearts covering the very top section)
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After all our hard work, we found out he didn't actually NEED a box (they decorated paper sacks in class to use instead), but we still had fun making it together!

Emily really wanted to use the oatmeal container, so we dumped out the remaining oatmeal into a Ziploc bag and got busy decorating
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Jared's class was given the task of creating a Valentine's Day box with at least three moving parts. Jared really wanted to make a castle, so we wrapped a Costco sized cereal box and a Costco sized Instant Breakfast box in white butcher paper, and got to work turning them into a castle
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Moving Part #1: An alligator "swims" back and forth in the moat with the help of a pull-string
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Moving Part #2: Another alligater swims around in circles on a brad
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Moving Part #3: The flag raises and lowers on the flag pole
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Moving Part #4: The drawbridge opens and closes
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We had a really good time crafting together, and the kids had fun showing off their creations. They had even more fun bringing the boxes home loaded with cards and treats!