Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Happiest Place on Earth

Three days in Disneyland and California Adventure was everything we had anticipated, and more. It didn't take long for the contagious excitement of the park to affect all of us.

Planning had taken months, dates were finally set and reservations made. Four vehicles filled with fifteen excited kids, ages one year through 71 headed southwest. This would be an extra special holiday because four birthdays were being celebrated.

The Prince (age 1) was content to watch all the happenings from his stroller. He was especially enamored by the beautiful princesses.

Mr. Eris, Jr. (12) is a little more reserved but really enjoyed his time with Bubba (age 17).

The Princess (age 3) took it all in as fast as she could. She is an expert on fairies and princesses and loved meeting all of them.

Jubee (age 14) did it all! She loved the rides and was a super help with the little ones. That grin was on her face the entire time.

Little Ms. (nearly 8) is the fearless one of the group and had carefully measured her height to make sure she could ride all of the scariest rides. And she did!

Bubba gave his tearful mother a hug after only a few hours and thanked her for bringing him. He hauled Littlest around on his shoulders much of the time and loved every second there.

Littlest Ms. , age 5, was wide-eyed from the moment we first entered the park. I believe she was the perfect age and the look of wonderment on her face the entire time was a joy to watch. The above photo was taken at the Princess Lunch where they read a Royal Decree in her honor for her birthday!

Having my entire family together, sharing laughter and making memories is what makes my life complete. Earlier this evening they were all here at our home eating belated birthday cakes and reliving the fun of last weekend. Five cameras had been busy last weekend preserving history. Shutters tripped nearly 1,100 times. The scrapbook is now complete and will sit on the coffee table for months where little hands as well as big hands will open it each time they visit. The smiles on the faces in the photos will bring new smiles as the good times are remembered again and again.

I love you all!

To see more smiles and fun, CLICK HERE.

$.36 found at Disneyland
.06 in Euros found in Death Valley National Park
(numismatising while on vacation is tough work)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Portraits by Little Ms

When young ones come to visit there are pretty strict rules. Don't step over the "line" with food. Spit out your gum immediately. No running around the island or coffee table. Stay out of the useless room (aha! future post!).

Movies, television and computer games are also rare activities. Instead, they know where to find the magnets to build shapes, beads to string necklaces, cars to race on the floor and clothes for dress up. They also know that there is an endless supply of paper on which to draw, scraps of patterned paper to cut and glue and erasable markers for whiteboards.

Two weeks ago Little Ms. got serious about her artwork. The rendition of Grandpa was easy to figure out. It took a little longer to figure out the Grandma drawing, but it is absolutely accurate. I must have been wearing my computer glasses. I still haven't figured out what shirt I wore that had letters on it.

There is a file in my desk with all kinds of memorabilia. School programs, drawings, admission tickets, each one special to me. My shelves of scrapbooks contain some of these things, often tucked between the pages of photos.

These are the stories of my life.


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

It's What Fun Is!

Last Friday was my birthday. About a week ago I realized that I was now closer to 60 than 50, a sobering thought that haunted me for a few days. Although I will always claim to be 39, a calculated number that makes perfect sense to me, Athena and Eris, the increasing number of spots from years of sun make that number slightly unbelievable.

Zeus was out of town for the weekend. When the girls asked about my plans for the day I told them I wanted to go to Lagoon. No kids, no hubbies, just my girls who all love the crazy rides like their mom. They all quickly jumped on board with the idea!

Lagoon is an amusement park located about 25 miles away that has been around since 1900. Just like the zoo, I remember going there as a young child with my family. Dad loved the roller coaster while Mom loved the Tilt-A-Whirl. Both rides are still in operation. Athena and Eris spent lots of time there growing up and like their mother, both love the scariest rides in the park.

We arrived shortly after it opened at 5 pm and went quickly from ride to ride, hitting the steepest, twistiest and fastest thrillers as fast as the lines would let us. The weather was a perfect 80. An added bonus was that Halloween is celebrated all through the month of October. Spooky decorations, interesting creatures and monsters were everywhere.

I braved two new rides this year. In 2001 Athena and Eris took little 9 year old Bubba on the Skycoaster, a giant swing that pulls you up to a height of 143 feet and then lets you free fall at speeds up to 80 mph. I've always wanted to try it. Athena and the Duchess were more than happy to be my swinging partners.

Eris strapped into the Catapult next to me. It was new to both of us and didn't disappoint. After being harnessed into the round metal frame by what seemed like a dozen belts you are catapulted up to 250 ft in the air. I knew immediately that I loved this ride!

After five hours of body slamming and stomach-turning rides it was time for the park to close. It took until Saturday afternoon before I could eat again and my ribs ached for two days from laughing so hard!

Thanks to Athena, Eris, Duchess and Googamus for making my birthday such a Frightmarish success!