Wednesday, October 22, 2014

january 2014

January was much calmer than December, thank goodness! But still fun enough to not be depressed after the holidays :)

Reading with Grandpa after a Sunday family dinner.

Elsa and Anna! (Karla and Anna)

Jessie twins!

Anna's first haircut! We went to Sweet and Sassy Salon to make it fun, just in case she was worried. Since then, I've trimmed it myself.

So excited!

SNIP! Goodbye baby curls :(

Also, her first blowout :)

Modeling her new do on the catwalk

Anna's dance moves

The final result! (It was still really long, but a big deal for Anna. We've cut off a few more inches so it was just past her shoulders since then.)

Anna loved gymnastics each week. Here she's wearing my old Mary Lou Retton leotard and the skirt I got for roller skating lessons when I was 4.

We hosted preschool a couple times in January. We did a community helpers unit. These are our fire truck snacks.

The next week we did construction workers and police officers. They built buildings and roads and solved crimes.

Fun in the checkout line!

december 2013 -part 2

Sam's brother Seth fell in love with the most wonderful girl and- fun for the whole family- they decided to get married near Natalie's home in Southern California around Christmas.

That meant a Cosby family reunion at Disneyland first and some time to visit with my brother David and his family afterward.

Do they look related? We switched off who slept with Levi since he was the kickiest of the children. Sam won this night.

Our first stop was Cars Land. I was excited to come to come to California Adventure with Levi since the last time we'd been Cars Land was still being built. Thankfully, he was still at the height of his Cars obsession which has since waned. Anna was not interested in riding a fast-ish ride so she and Sam went somewhere else.

Cars Land!

I'd heard there could be long lines to see Lightning later in the day, so when no one was there, I stopped for a turn. Levi was so excited and nervous, he wouldn't go any closer. He could not stop watching Lightning talk and move. It was too much for his little imagination.

 In line for the ride! It was so much fun to ride with him! He was beyond excited and enthralled. I think he rode it four times over the weekend. His favorite part was when Frank the combine roars up at you.

Mickey ice cream!

From the top of the Ferris Wheel in California Adventure. Ruth had left a Mickey and Minnie plush toy for the kids on their beds before we got to the hotel and they carried them with them the whole trip. They're still a favorite toy.

The Haunted Mansion was completely redecorated in a Nightmare Before Christmas theme. It was so fun. I think I like it better than the original. I was worried the kids would be scared, but they both handled it well. Right before we got on, Anna had to go to the bathroom, so Van wound his way out with her and then sweet talked his way into the mansion so they could ride with us. He's the sweetest Grandpa!

Dumbo! Another favorite we rode several times.

Levi rode with the big boys on the teacups and they went CRAZY! I've never seen one get spinning that fast, but Levi didn't cry. He woozily told us he loved it. 

Later in the day, Sam and the uncles convinced Levi to go on the Tower of Terror. Sam said he was a little nervous when the people on TV got in the elevator and disappeared, but gripped Sam's hand and toughed it out. He was so proud when they were done. Levi is watching as I write this and he said, "I was a little scared, but not that scared."

Anna rode with Grandma and Caleb. They took it much easier. There was no way my first trimester self was getting on those teacups. (I have no idea what Anna's doing in this picture. She had a great time on the ride.)

Lots of fun in Toon Town, of course. Levi was too little to ride the goofy coaster last time so the kids rode it three or four times in one afternoon.

Okay. Princesses. It was important to Anna to meet them, so we waited in line. I realized I'd left my extra camera batteries in the hotel room, so Ruth waited with her while I ran to find some. I got back just in time. Anna was wearing her princess dress and could hardly contain her excitement which meant she was a little shy, but warmed right up when the princess talked to her. I was glad Aurora was there since she was Anna's 2nd current favorite. It was hilarious to me how the princess posed for the pictures and talked with her. But of course, that's what makes Disney parks so magical.

Belle said, "Let's hold our dresses out!"

Deep in conversation

Oh my goodness. We waited in line twice to see Rapunzel, but it was SO worth it. She talked with Anna for several minutes and was funny and sweet, just like the movie. Anna told she had never cut her hair either and Rapunzel made a huge deal out of it.

She said, "Let's hold each other's hair!"

Anna really fell in love with her. So worth the wait. It still makes me smile to remember how happy she was.

Everything was so pretty at night. After the fireworks they snowed down tiny bubbles.

We had such a good time on Small World which also gets completely re-done for Christmas. It was probably my favorite ride this time around.

We spent lots of time at the Lego store and Levi bought his Christmas present from G&G Stay there.

Some other Disney highlights: 
The parades- we got lots of waves from characters and had good seats both times. 
Lunch with the Cosby's- we went to a barbeque place in Frontierland and though we had to wait a long time, it was relaxing to just sit and talk and eat all we wanted with our family. 
Favorite rides: Winnie the Pooh, Peter Pan, Grizzly River Run (this pushed the kids comfort a bit, but they loved it), Splash Mountain with Levi, Isaac, and Linclon, Midway Mania with Levi, Ariel ride with Anna. 
The Hotel: swimming, napping, the huge Christmas tree, the helpful staff, Chip and Dale cartoons running 24/7
Shows: we watched a Fantasia show and I saw the Aladdin stage show which was fun

The Wedding! Seth and Natalie got married in the Newport Beach Temple. It was fun to see a new one.

I wanted Levi and Anna to take naps between the wedding and reception, but only Anna did. It had been a long few days and they were exhausted. Of course, Levi fell asleep on the 15 min car ride from the hotel to the reception. He did NOT want to wake up, so he's not in these photos. When we finally brought him in, he didn't want to eat or be in the party so he stayed in the hall and played with cars.

Anna had so much fun with her cousins at the party! Belle was her favorite and was so kind to her.

We finally dragged Levi in and this was his pose with the happy couple :)

We drove to my brother's house that night and about 5 minutes after we walked in, Levi threw up all over their floor and dresser. Sam got him cleaned up in the bathroom where he threw up again while I kneeled in my lace dress cleaning it up in the bedroom. Dave and Marcelle were so kind and understanding about it all. We like to make a big entrance I guess... Thankfully, that was the end of it. It was probably just the result of long days, short nights, and unusual food.

We got lots of time to relax, play, talk, and eat with Dave, Marcelle, Jonas, Maggie, and baby Gabriel who we met for the first time. It was so fun to snuggle the baby! Levi and Anna were so happy to be able to jump on the trampoline and play in the sprinklers and watch TV. We love cousin time!