Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Letters to Santa

We sat down one night and wrote some letters to Santa. Ethan asked for a football helmet and a leapster and Madelyn asked for a new doll and a puppy. I think this is such a fun tradition and this year Jared had a great idea to take our letters to Santa when we went to see him. Sadly that did not happen because that kids got sick. So we had to send our letters in the mail. But maybe next year we can hand deliver our letters. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Meet Massy

Have you heard of the book Elf on the Shelf? I had a friend post about this book a few years ago and I loved the idea. This year I finally got around to doing it for our family. I decided to wait until after our trip to Disneyland to start. The book came all wrapped up in a special Christmas bag that Ethan and Madelyn got to open.
We sat down and read the book together (don't mind my beautiful look I'm displaying here)
Then it was time to meet our new friendly elf and give him a name. I asked Ethan what he would like to name him and he said Massy. NO IDEA were that came from but I went with it and so begins our Christmas tradition of elf on the shelf.
The story is that Santa sent this elf to stay with us during the Christmas season. Each day he watches the kids play and at night he flies home to the North Pole to tell Santa how the kids are doing. When he comes back in the morning he is always in a new place. So each morning the kids get to find the elf. Sometimes the elf is good and just picks a new place to hang out, sometimes he find a little bit of trouble to get into and sometimes he helps himself to a late night snack.
It was really fun watching Ethan wake up each morning and find the elf and for the most part he behaved pretty good. Once we had to have a note come back from Santa though. I think this will be a great tradition for our holiday season.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Disneyland 2011-Day Three & Four

On our third day we took a day off from Disneyland and spent the day being a little more lazy. We took a trip up to LA and spent most of our day at the California Science Center. This place was pretty fun and very hands on. Unfortunately I only took 2 photos. We were really enjoying our day and letting the kids play. Ethan had a lot of fun exploring and learning.
They had this HUGE aquarium that was floor to ceiling. This was one of my favorite things. They also have a show were some divers get into the aquarium and teach you about the fish but we missed the show.
They had TONS of hands on exhibits. Every moms dream. If this place was close to me I'd be there all of the time with the kids. Here they had a couple of boats where the kids got to put on a life vest and then go fishing. Once they caught a fish the had to match it in the puzzle that was on deck. 

On day four (our last day of the trip) we spent it first in Disneyland. Jared's parents wanted to go on a ride with the kids so they took them on Alice in Wonderland. This ride is as crazy as the movie. But I think the kids enjoyed it and I know they love spending time with Grandma and Grandpa. 
Then we went on small world again and storybook land canal boats (which that boat is a little scary to get into) and then on to dumbo. 
I love rides like this were we can ride as a family.

Next was the carrousel
Of course Madelyn was much more interested in the ride then me taking her picture.

Then Jared took Ethan on one of his favorite rides. The Big Thunder Mountain.
You can't see Jared and Ethan cuz I think they are behind the brown box. I tried so hard to get a good photo of them but holding Madelyn and taking a picture at the same time is not so easy. But they are on there somewhere.

Ethan really wanted to ride the Astro Orbitor so we rode that and then headed over to California Adventure.
We rode toy story :)
Silly Ethan in the toy story box showing me he is four years old.
Then we rode the ferris wheel
Then spent the rest our time in the redwood creek challenge trail. Ethan and Jared had a lot of fun here. I was so surprised at how brave Ethan was walking across the ropes.
And on our way out of the park we got to meet our last character. DUG!
Then we took a few pictures in front of the new Disneyland Resort sign before we left.
We had a wonderful time on our trip and really enjoyed being with family. Next time we come will be so fun and magical. Madelyn will be at such a fun age. I'm guessing that she will be crazy about princesses and I can't wait for her excitement as we get to meet them :)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Disneyland 2011-Day Two

On day two of our trip we had plans to get up early and do our early morning in Disneyland but we were way behind and didn't make it. So instead we took our time getting ready and enjoyed the morning. When we got to Disneyland as soon as we walked in we were lucky enough to be surrounded by all of the characters. Ethan was so excited to meet them and have them sign his book. Madelyn on the other hand was a little afraid of them.
After meeting all of these guys we hiked over to Fantasyland so we could ride Small World. The last time we came we never had a chance to ride this so we wanted to make sure and do it this year. I'm so glad we did because it's for sure one of my favorite rides and I'd say it's Madelyn's too. She would sit so still on my lap and just look around her in awe.
For the rest of the day we spent it in California Adventure. First up was A Bug's Land. This picture is from a little train that is very slow and somewhat boring but the kids always love it.
Next Jared, Ethan, Rachael, Fisher and Macie rode the bumper cars.
And then it was onto the flyers.
After that we had a lunch break and then decided to watch it's tough to be a bug movie. BAD IDEA! Ethan and Madelyn were scared to death by that movie. I guess it is a little too really for such little kids. We quickly left the theater and were lucky enough to see and meet these two. 
Next we headed over to Hollywood Picture Backlot and ran into another friend
And Got to see the very end of this show
Then we rode Monsters a few times
Ran into a few more friends
(as you can tell Madelyn was not interested in meeting these guys)
Then we headed over to the pier to have some fun. First up was the carousel.
Then we went to ride the little mermaid where Madelyn fell asleep before we even made it on the ride. Poor baby was so tired. 
After that we ran into woody and Jesse. And played a few games on the board walk. Ethan and Jared won a cute little bullseye.
I had heard that the Disney Jr. show that they have in the Hollywood Picture Backlot was a great show for kids Ethan's age. So I wanted to make sure we took him to see that. So we walked back to the backlot and stood in line for the show. We were one of the first few to get inside and got a great seat. Ethan's cousin and best buddy Fisher came along with us. These pictures are from my phone and not very good but the boys are standing up and dancing with Mickey. The absolutely LOVED the show and I'm so glad we took them.
After that we kind of just hung out at the pier. We had tickets to see the color of wonder show that didn't start for a while. We took Ethan over to ride the jelly fish and he loved it. I think we rode it 3 times or so. 
For dinner we ate in the park and had the biggest most yummiest corn dogs I've ever had.
After dinner we waited for what seemed like forever in the cold and sometimes windy park. The kids were quickly fading but finally the show started and it was awesome! I thought it was totally worth the wait. Sadly I did not get any pictures of it but as we were walking out of the park both our kids fell asleep in a matter of minutes. It was just too cute and too funny to not take a picture.