Disneyland: Meeting Mickey

KidsMickey_zps8azfyqzu-1We’re in the home stretch, friends!  School gets out for us tomorrow and it’s probably a toss up as to whether E or I are more excited about him not having any more homework.

The weeks have been whipping by in a blur (per usual around here) and I wanted to blog about a trip to Disneyland we took at the end of April before the details escaped me.  We haven’t been on a family vacation in a few years and thought the kids were good ages to go and it turned out wonderfully.

We wanted to limit the time N and the kids missed work and school and so we flew into the Long Beach airport instead of driving.  It was our first time using this airport and we loved it!  It’s small, relaxed, and very easy to get around.  We picked up our rental car, stopped by a Whole Foods to get some food allergy-safe food for E, and then had dinner at a fun Korean fusion burrito place we found online.  After dinner we drove to our hotel and as we got to our room and started unpacking we watched an impressive fireworks display from our window.  And then we put the kids to bed in their bunk beds and closed the door on their separate bedroom and it was awesome 🙂

The next morning we headed into Disneyland for the first of our three days at the parks.  It was a Wednesday and busy but not crazy crowded.  As we walked into the park we were checking out Main Street when we saw Minnie pop out of an unmarked door.  Mimi loves Minnie but before we could approach her Minnie grabbed a couple of kids by the hand and booked it across the square to where a long line immediately formed.  The kids were a little dejected at having missed Minnie but then Mickey popped out of the same door!  E and Mimi ran up to him and he grabbed their hands and immediately started hauling it out of there.

As soon as people saw Mickey they joined the quickly-growing crowd following him and the kids.  N and I had to weave in and out of the crowd and scramble to keep up with them.  Mickey took the kids to what I’m assuming was his assigned meet-and-greet spot, I quickly snapped a pic of them with my phone, and we said goodbye.

It was a surprising and memorable start to our Disneyland trip 🙂

Sequim: Olympic Game Farm

The main purpose of our trip to Sequim was to visit the Olympic Game Farm which houses retired showbiz animals.  You can drive through the farm and feed the animals (whole-wheat only!) bread. 

We all (the kids, my mom, my brother Steven, and I) had a lot of fun.  On the way home we got a much-needed car wash.  Buffalo drool is quite, um, impressive.

Previous visits: 2009 and 2012

Sequim: Lavender Farm

While we were in WA we drove up the Olympic peninsula and spent the day in Sequim, a little town nestled in a sunny microclimate which allows it to be the lavender capital of North America.

We were mainly in town to visit the Olympic Game Farm but we stopped by one of the many lavender farms to look around.

Besides the incredible smell the most remarkable thing about the farm was the sound.  Walk a few feet into the fields and you’re surrounded on all sides by the loud droning of bees.  They were everywhere and made E nervous; Mimi was oblivious (as she often is).

The kids were feeling squirrely after being in the car all day, and so this is what happened when I asked my mom to take my picture with them.

After a pep talk (and a teeny bit of yelling) I got them to take a better photo with my mom.

Sequim is a great place to visit if you’re in the area.  We usually do a day trip every time we visit my parents and I always look forward to it.  Check out little baby E here on a previous visit.

Home from WA

We’re back from spending two weeks in Washington state.  My parents and brother Steven still live in the area where I grew up, and it’s always nice to spend time with them and bask in nostalgia for a bit. We also spent a few days visiting N’s brother Ken and his family which was great too.

I took too many photos and will be sorting through them and posting my favorites in the next week or so, so check back 🙂

Empire State Building

When we arrived in New York we hit the ground running since we knew we only had a few days before Sandy would hit.  Among other things we visited The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The MoMA, and the Empire State Building.

I couldn’t get enough of the Empire State Building’s Art Deco loveliness. It really is spectacular.

If you’re planning a visit to New York and want to see some sights, you might want to look getting a City Pass.  We bought them before we left and when we used it at the Empire State Building we got to skip part of the line.

You come out ahead if you go to at least four of the attractions and if you go to all six included attractions it’s quite a good deal. 

If you’re interested in helping out those affected by Sandy by purchasing specific items, you can send supplies through Amazon.  We’re donating to our church’s humanitarian fund but it was nice to buy a case of diapers and know that it will be in New York by Friday. 

Safe and Sound

We’re home! After spending a lot of the time on the phone to Delta we got booked on a late flight to from JFK to SLC on Wednesday. After we were booked on the flight we were woken up several times during the middle of the night by automated phone calls during the middle of the night that told us that our flight was cancelled.

Sadly, we missed Halloween with the kids but yesterday I put them in their costumes and took their picture.  I also walked them across the street to an understanding friend’s house so I could hear Mimi chirp “thickoreat!” and “dank-you!” in person.  SO cute. 

I think it’s safe to say that N and I will never forget this trip to New York.  We crammed a lot of fun into the days before Sandy hit and being there during/after the storm was surreal. 

We were really lucky that our hotel never lost power or even internet service.  The very next block was completely dark for days (and may still be). 

This was my first visit to New York and even with all the craziness of Sandy I fell in love with the city.  It’s such a magnificent place.  I’m hoping and praying that the lights will come back on soon and that those affected will be comforted.

New York!

photo by *AnjaRoehrich

Guys, I’m so excited!  Soon N and I will be taking our first trip without the kids and will be heading to New York for a few days of awesome food and sights.

Have you been to New York before?  This will be our first time.  I’ve already pumped family (Mindy and Ken) and blog friends (Julia) for recommendations but if you have any, I’d love to hear about them. 

Olympic Game Park

While we were visiting my parents we drove to Sequim (skwɪm), WA. It’s located in the rainshadow of the Olympic mountains so it receives very little rain in comparison to the rest of western Washington.

The climate is excellent for growing things and when we’ve visited before we’ve picked raspberries and wandered around the lavender farms but this time we had one mission and one mission only: to go to Olympic Game Farm.

We’ve been there before but E was tiny at the time and slept through the whole thing.  I knew he and Mimi would love it this time around and they  had a blast feeding the deer/yaks/buffalo bread from the car windows.

The thing that most impressed me this time around was the smell of buffalo drool.  It was quite memorable 🙂

There are some pictures from our previous visit here.