Welcome to our blog

We wanted to start this blog as a way to keep track of all the new things going on in our family...read along for fun tales, lots of pictures and just try and keep up with the chaos!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Hermosa Beach, Uncle John and The Best Day Ever

Recently, Ellie and I took a girls trip to LA to go and see Uncle John.  Dad and Tom stayed home, as we thought Tommy might be just a little young for the major part of our trip, which was to take Ellie to Disneyland.  We had an amazing trip, which you can see for yourself in the (tons) of pictures below.  The weather was fantastic, we stayed at Johns new apartment (just 4 blocks off the beach!), ate great food and had a lot of fun together.

We went out on a Friday and hit the beach right away.  On Saturday we trekked up to Disneyland.  We hit the park at 8 am, and left at 8 pm.  It was a long, but perfect day.  It was sunny and nice, we met tons of princesses and Disney characters, got autographs, ate special treats, rode all the cool kids rides, bought things to take home and saw two parades.  

Every so often, Ellie, John or I would shout "best day ever" when anything fun would happen.  One of my favorite stories of the day came when Ellie got mad at me for something while we were eating lunch.  I asked her why, and she said "Well, we are going to have to leave after lunch so I can go take a nap."  I looked at her and smiled and said "Well today is special.  You don't have to nap at Disneyland".  She got so excited, shouted "best day ever" and that was the first thing she told Mikey about Disneyland when we talked to him later that day. 

Let me just say - Disney does things right!  It legitimately is the Happiest Place on Earth, and we had a day we will never forget.

Excited on the plane ride out there.
First stop...the beach.  PS - it was 78 degrees in Hermosa.  A far cry for 106 in KC.
Checking out the waves with Uncle John
Cute gal on the beach
Playing Queen and Prince with Uncle John.  The Queen gives all the orders in this game.  Guess who was the Queen?
Posing with my gal
Out to dinner at a great place on our first night.  We let Ellie watch a show on the iPad after a long day.
The tram over to Disneyland.  You can't tell if she is excited can you?
Posing right after we got into Disneyland
We lasted 5 minutes until we bought the first souvenir.  A princess hat. She wore it for 15 minutes with pure excitement and then never put it on again. 

Carousel ride
We all liked that ride
They had a meet and greet where we could meet and talk to some of the Princesses.  It sure was a highlight of the day.  She was too nervous to stand on her own, but did a good job chatting them up.  This is Princess Tiana from Princess and the Frog

Princess Ariel from the Little Mermaid
Princess Belle from Beauty and the Beast
Afterwards, you walked out into a princess shop where you could also get your face painted (did I mention that Disney is full of marketing genius?).
Afterwards, we watched an interactive Disney princess show where Ellie and I wrapped ribbons around a maypole.  Something I have never seen done in person and thought hasn't been done since the early 1900s, but was happy to do nonetheless.
Great pic of us meeting Mickey.  That was big time!
We met Minnie right after.
Ellie had an autograph book and all the characters signed it.
Posing in Mickey's car
We got a little wacky meeting Goofy.
Driving a car around a huge track.  She LOVED being able to drive.
Shooting bad guys on the Toy Story ride.
A gal and her uncle
Ellie with the Water Fairy.  Don't really know what her story is, but she was nice and Ellie liked her, so what the hey.
The one and only - Tinkerbell
Flying rocket ships
Mid afternoon ice cream break
Rapunzel.  She was our favorite.  Very nice.  Even Uncle John liked her the best  :)
Checking out the map
Waiting for the parade to begin
Disney does a parade up right.  HUGE floats with all the characters, choreographed dances, singing, the whole bit.
Princess float.  Ellie waved madly at all the characters.  We were so close they would hear her yelling and wave back.
Spinning teacups
In the Finding Nemo submarine ride
So at the end of the day, John and I broke down and bought her a Princess dress.  She was so excited.  We changed in a bathroom, and she said to me when she put in on..."Mom, its soooooo perfect!"  You couldn't have told that at all by her smile in this picture.
Princess, her mom and the Disneyland Castle
Princess waving to the princesses in Parade #2 of the day

This is how we moseyed out of Disneyland.  Princess, holding Mickey and Minnie babies.

She lost the ability to speak while we waited for the tram.  It was about 7:30 at this point, almost a 12 hour day. 
And this was the scene 3.5 minutes into our car ride.  John and I thought it was a day well done for sure.
How do you top a day at Disney?  You don't, but we sure did have a great Sunday.  We went to the park that morning.  Perfect weather, sun shining.  Great day.
Uncle John helping with the zipline.  This park was an awesome one!
Picnic in the park.  Notice Mickey and Minnie babies made the trip.  Also notice, you still have never seen that Princess hat again.
Feeding the ducks
Great pic of her here.

Last pic of the trip - on our way to the  beach, stopped for some snacks.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Happy Birthday America

July 4th came and went, and we had some great celebrations.  First, its not news to anyone in K.C., but it was hot.  Real hot.  Super hot.  High temps followed us throughout the day. 

Here is Ellie putting on her bike helmet, prepping for our neighborhood bike parade the morning of the 4th.
Tom Burgess was all ready for the parade as well.  He has a brand new trike that he has been enjoying riding around.  Important fact: although Tom loves his new tricycle, he decided NOT to ride in the parade, choosing to be held by his mother, who walked the 6 block parade in the 95 degree heat holding him. 

The Pendletons invited us over to celebrate that night.  A few of the Dads brought fireworks, which the kids loved.  You can see Mikey here in the mix, handing out the snappers to the kids.

Everyone wanted some.

Tommy wanted a champagne popper

Ellie and her friend Harper collecting the confetti from the champagne poppers

Brother and sister

Micheal and Tommy petting Deacon.  Tommy loves Deacon - he followed him around all night calling out "Deacy".  I think he missed Maddy and Sadie.

The crew sitting on the curb watching the dads light off the big fireworks.