Monday, August 29, 2011

Nephew Story

We met Sister and Nephew at the mall for lunch on Saturday and, afterwards, I treated the kids to ice cream.  Nephew wanted vanilla.  I explained that they had French Vanilla.  It's still vanilla, but it's a slightly different color.  I assured him it would taste the same.  So, he orders Vanilla mixed with Kit Kats.  Little Miss got chocolate mixed with M&M's.  So, Nephew takes a big bite of ice cream and declares it delicious.  He looks up and says, "It's still vanilla but in a different language."  Sure thing, buddy.

Awesome

Yesterday, Little Miss asked for help setting up her play bowling set.  She had done this task many times before so we told her she can do it.  She looked up at us and said, "but I'm not awesome enough."  Of course, we had to tell her she was the most awesome kid ever and can definitely do it.  She ended up setting up the kit.  I think she was a little peeved her effort to get out of setting up her toy didn't work.  It was cute acting though.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Earthquake!

As everyone knows by now, there was an earthquake in Virginia that was felt all sorts of places from Georgia to Canada. Our building is one floor so, at first, I thought it was someone walking on the roof. It happens and we were having fire alarm testing today. Then, I looked across the courtyard and saw that the other side of the building was shaking, too. Our building is shaped like a doughnut. So, I knew it was an earthquake. I went to head to our internal room in the office, but we were told to run outside (which later we found out, we're not supposed to do in case trees start falling). After the earth stopped quaking, we had to wait 20-30 minutes to allow for any immediate aftershocks and then until after the building maintenance inspected the building. It turns out there was some cracked glass and debris. I knew there was at least some debris because lights were falling and dust was drifting down from the ceiling when we were evacuating. We were given the all clear but told we should just go home. I went to my cube and saw the sight below:

I knew I was safe so I just turned off my PC and grabbed my purse, but I was sad and will take the time to acknowledge the only victim in this earthquake - my lunch. It was such a good lunch, too - broccoli baked potato from Jason's Deli. I was afraid half the ceiling was still in my bowl so I just threw it away. Dinner will be the most delicious meal I've ever had. (No damage in our apartment, and Little Miss and Husband were safe and sound although Husband had to walk from Capitol Hill to Rosslyn which is quite a walk.)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Weekend Update - Party!

We survived our first week back from vacation!  Then, we were finally awarded with a weekend.  On Saturday, Little Miss had a classmate's birthday party.  She was so excited.  She met another classmate on the way, and the two of them gave each other a big hug and held hands all the way up the walkway.  The kids had a blast. Little Miss played baseball, went in the kiddie pool and slid down the slip and slide.  I think all the fun was worth the super duper itchy bug bites she got.


On Sunday, we had the most relaxing day we've had all summer.  We got up, had brunch, and went to the mall to buy some much-needed items.  Then, the entire family took a 3-hour nap.  We had dinner and went to bed.  Well, we all had some trouble falling asleep, but it was still worth it. 

Weekend Update - Returning to the Reality

We came back on a Friday.  On Saturday, I went to a matinee movie with friends.  On Sunday, we went to Brother-in-Law, Sister-in-Law and Nephew's house to hang at their pool.  Unfortunately, it started raining as soon as we got there.  So, we ate lunch inside and then head to the pool where Nephew promptly fell asleep in my arms.  It was nice to cuddle a little one.  Husband and Little Miss went in the pool.  Then, the storms came back again so we went back inside and then head home.  It was a quick weekend before the return to work. 

Vacation Update - Pool Fun

This is the last of the vacation updates. On our last day, we mostly hung by the pool while everyone got their long-awaited time at the water park. Little Miss went down the big water slide all by herself. We were so proud of her. She did it the first day and claimed it was too watery to do again. On the last day, she said she'd go again. I went after her and it really is a big water slide so I'm shocked she did it and then did it again. Video below:
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After, the staff hold a dance party and do some games like Pool Bingo and Disney trivia.  (Sidenote:  my family won the Disney trivia and we won a giant inflatable microphone.  I know.   You're jealous.)  So, when they start the activities, the staff put on a dance and invite everyone up to dance with them.  The participants are mostly kids, but Little Miss would jump up and stand with everyone, too.  Unfortunately, she gets her dancing talent from me.  See for yourself:

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After that, we pretty much went to bed early.  The bus picked us up at 4AM.  We were so proud though because Little Miss woke up at 3AM with us and walked to the bus and was awake all through the airport.  She only fell asleep once we boarded the plane.  All three of us were sleeping by our 7:20AM take off.  We spent most of Friday sleeping and the rest of the weekend trying to regain the non-vacation world.


Our Little Athlete

Overheard

During vacations, Husband adopts a similar philosophy as my father. Neither shaves during the entire trip. So, both are scruffy (to say the least) by the end of the trip. Towards the end of the trip, Nephew crawls up to Husband and pets his face and says, "Uncle, you look just like Capt. Jack Sparrow." I laughed so hard my stomach still hurts. Seriously. Husband responded with "Buddy, if you can convince your Auntie April of that, I'll buy you anything you want."

Maybe Vanessa Paradis won't notice the old switcheroo...

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Vacation Update - Magic Kingdom Video

Little Miss really was a trooper at the Magic Kingdom. It is the only park in which she did not nap. She just went hard and strong. While waiting the hour plus for the parade, the employees had many ways to entertain the crowd. One way was to provide hula hoops (see below). Others were to let the kids jump rope.

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Before the parade, we bought Little Miss a bubble gun which was her prized possession. It also was a boy magnet (who knew?) She had a lot of fun with the kids nearby (English not a requirement) and that was a great time staller.
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Little Miss LOVED the parade. She waved to everything and everyone like it was her job. Many waved back. After the parade, we went to meet up with the rest of the family before the fireworks. In the moments it took us to walk down Main Street, Little Miss conked out. She slept through the fireworks and the entire ride home though she did wake up at home to ask when the fireworks were.
It was a lot of fun, and Little Miss talks about the trip often or at least looks at the pictures and videos over and over.  Trust me when I tell you I only blogged a sampling.  There are many (many, many) more photos and video clips.  We were so proud of Little Miss and her behavior especially when we saw all the other kids (some much older than she) just losing it with the long days, heat or impatient parents.

Vacation Update - The Magic Kingdom

Well, of course, the Magic Kingdom is why anyone who goes to DisneyWorld visits. It just happened to work out that it was one of the last things we did. Because we were probably going to separate and go our separate ways, it was very important that we all go on It's a Small World first because it is Grandma and Dad's favorite ride. We made sure the kids were with G.G. (great-grandmother).After, we had Little Miss's highlight of the trip - the carousel.  She loved it.  Her goal was to ride rides (see the below video). We then rode the Dumbo ride. It's a good thing none of us are prone to motion-sickness. You'd think Dumbo hit a great deal of turbulance the way Little Miss was directing our flight.
I made Little Miss pose with the drawfs. Of course, next year, Fantasyland is expanding by leaps and bounds and will feature a ton of new stuff including a drawf ride. However, for now, a picture next to the Coming Soon sign will have to do.
The rest of the day was a blur. We met up with everyone else so I could ride Great Thunder Mountain. Then, we had some lunch, went back to Frontierland and Liberty Square and then ate some dinner. After dinner, we went to Main Street to get some ice cream and stake out a spot for the Electric Light Parade. Little Miss was so excited for the parade and fireworks. Unfortunately, for her, she only got to see one of them (see next post).  Below is Little Miss and her ice cream.  She ate it until it inevitably started melting at which point, I got to eat the ice cream cone in a race against the heat.  I think the heat won.  It was so messy that, after the initial bite, Little Miss finished with her rain coat on.  Best decision we made that entire trip.  However, I'm not sure the rain coat will ever be the same.
video

Vacation Update - Rain Delay

Actually, the rain didn't really affect us too much.  We were just going to be lazy at the beach.  The rest of the family had plans to go to the water park.  So, we decided we were going to Downtown Disney/Disney Marketplace and walk around and shop a little.  The rest of the family decided at the last minute to come with us.


We walked into some shops.  In one, Little Miss put on this fedora and grabbed a matching bag.  She was so adorable and sassy, I took a quick photo.  Husband liked it so much, I thought he was going to buy her the hat, but it was a little too much for an impulse buy. 

We grabbed a bit of lunch and then met up with my parents, grandma and nephew.  They said they were going home and would take Little Miss.  So, while we were toddler-free, we picked up a few gifts.  However, the bus was delayed so we ended up all on the same bus home.  The rest of the day, we mostly just hung out, had dinner and went to bed a little early so we could have a long day at the Magic Kingdom.


I had to snap the below picture.  It's for Little Miss Matched but it was perfect for the blog. 


Little Miss's Present

At Hollywood Studios, Little Miss got to spend some time with Brother-in-Law.  Each day at a park, he bought her a frozen treat.  Ever since she was old enough to eat ice cream, he treats her to ice cream every time he sees her.  So, she has many fond memories of him already.  While we were at Hollywood Studios, he mentioned he wanted to buy something for Little Miss.  Unfortunately, the day was a little crazy and, because Little Miss couldn't do a lot of the rides for taller folk or wasn't interested in the same things as the rest of the family, we ended up a little isolated.  So, I texted and said Brother-in-Law could just surprise her with a gift if he wanted. 


Earlier, I joked that I evaded an entire gift shop because there were stuffed Special Agent Oso bears. If you've never heard of it, it's a show on Disney that features a special agent bear in training. He's really annoying if you're under 6. So, Brother-in-Law bought Little Miss "the biggest Oso" he could find. Luckily, he's not that big. Little Miss immediately gave him a giant hug and has slept with him ever since.  Yeah, it's an honor to be chosen to be in bed, but she also likes an entire menagerie in there as you can see.


Vacation Update - the Highlight of My Trip

If you didn't know already, I'm a big fan of Phineas and Ferb. So, I knew they were at Hollywood Studios and I was going to find them. However, we were busy most of the day, and they were on the far end of the park.
After our morning with the Disney Junior folk, we had some lunch and found a lunch spot that kept us covered during a massive downfall of rain. After, we met up with the rest of the family, and Little Miss fell asleep. So, we left her with them while she slept and went on some rides for those taller than 42" (and, yes, that does include me). We rode The Great Movie Ride and then saw Little Miss was still sleeping. Brother-in-Law had a couple of extra FastPasses to Star Tours so we quickly jumped on that ride. Husband loved it, and it is a great ride though it's over far too quickly. Then, we went back to Little Miss who finally woke.
After, we tried to all go on the Backlot Studio ride, but it was broken. So, we all separated. Husband had a beer with Brother-in-Law and his father while Little Miss and I took a walk. We got to meet Lightning McQueen and Mater and saw the Muppet Stage show. In between those two things though, Little Miss very nicely humored me and stood in line for almost an hour to see Phineas and his stepbrother, Ferb. She was so good, and it was a lot of fun.
After, we met up with Husband and Little Miss wanted to see the Disney Junior show again. If we hustled, we could have made the last show of the day. However, on the way, we passed Buzz Lightyear's ride which she wanted to do instead. We explained that the line was 90 minutes, but she was adamant. We hadn't waited in line for any ride, but 90 minutes is a long time with or without a 3-year-old. So, we told her we would wait in line and then we were heading home. She was excellent. We waited in line and all really enjoyed the ride. It's fun, fast and action-packed.  Below is a picture of her about halfway through the 90-minute line.
We left at the right time, too. We got quite a violent storm that night. Good day, and we still got home for dinner and an early bedtime.

Vacation Update - We're Going to Hollywood (Studios)!

We didn't expect much of Hollywood Studios. Frankly, I hate the Tower of Terror so much I like to pretend the park doesn't exist. Regardless, we had the three-day pass so we were going. Then, we got there and saw Handy Manny and the rest is history. We waited in line for quite awhile, but Little Miss really wanted to meet Handy Manny even over The Little Einstein's June who was right next door. So, we waited in line. When it was our turn, she ran up to him and gave him a bit hug.
After, we saw June left, but Leo and his sister, Annie, had arrived so we waited in line to see them.  They also got big hugs.  Then, Annie pretended to lead Little Miss out for a walk, but the Disney employee made her return Little Miss to us.  Sadly, Little Miss was perfectly content to go with Annie.
After, we noticed we missed the Disney Junior stage show so we went to The Little Mermaid and then went straight to the Disney Junior show. I can't explain to you how much Little Miss enjoyed herself. It was like someone held a party with all her friends. The show featured Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, The Little Einsteins, Jake and the Neverland Pirates and Handy Manny. Jake and the Neverland Pirates is one of Little Miss's favorite shows. You can see her next to the sign above and it is the theme song she is singing in the video below.
One of the rewards of Jake and the Neverland Pirates is that Jake gets gold doubloons by earning them by completing some action. So, at the end of his segment of the show, gold doubloons (or circular confetti) fell from the sky. It was as if real gold was falling to Little Miss.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Weather Report

While driving this morning, Little Miss and I talked about the weather. She asked where the sun was, and I explained it was behind a building, but she would be able to see it soon. Then, she informed me it was going to snow. I said, yes, it would eventually but not for awhile. She told me it was going to snow tomorrow. I said not tomorrow. She replied, "It is, Mommy. It's going to snow tomorrow. You wait and see."


I wish I had her confidence.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

We interrupt this Vacation Update...

Tonight, during the long process of putting Little Miss to bed, we read a book. The book was an I Spy book which means you have items to find in a big, busy collage. One item was the Queen of Hearts. So, we spent a long time looking for the queen. Little Miss says she doesn't like queens because they're jealous. (In Snow White, the queen is said to be jealous of Snow White's beauty.) I said that not all queens are wicked or jealous. Then, after a few moments, she said "I love the queen. She's not very nice, but I love her."

Vacation Update - Mickey Mouse

You'll see in the above picture that Little Miss is cuddling up to Mickey Mouse. What you can't see is the fact that she was the first to meet Mickey, Minnie and Goofy. Mickey knelt down on one knee and Little Miss gave him a big hug... and wouldn't let go. So, all of the photos have Little Miss on Mickey's lap. When we went to leave, she gave Mickey one last hug and said "Sorry, Mickey, I have to go now." Mickey placed his hand over his heart and gave her a sad wave goodbye.

Vacation Update - Epcot

The whole family stayed together for the first part of the day. We rode on The Living Seas where we took a ride with Nemo. Here is Husband and Little Miss inside Bruce, the Shark. Then, at some point, half the family went one way and the other half of us went to relax.
Little Miss was too little to ride the rides the other half went to visit. Plus, she fell asleep in her stroller. So, Brother-in-Law, his dad, Husband and I went back to the Norway pavillion and had cold beverages. I took a brief stop in Mexico and picked up a margarita and the boys all had beer. Little Miss slept for quite awhile while we just relaxed and had a breather.
At some point, the rest of the family rejoined us. We toured half of the countries until the kids asked to go home. So, we head back and put the kids to bed. It was a great first day!

Vacation Update - Just the Girls

Two Saturdays ago, we woke up early (like the sun wasn't out yet) and got ready to get a bus to go to Norway - well, Epcot Center's Norway pavillion. We had reservations for the Princess Breakfast. Grandma, Aunt, Mom, Sister, and Little Miss and I all donned tiaras and arrived in all our royal glory.
Belle met us at the door, and we all had our chance to have our picture taken with her. She taught Little Miss how to hold her gown out. Then, we were seated and given breakfast while the princesses walked around.  We were very lucky because our table was right by the door through which the princesses exited.  So, we were the first to meet them. 
After breakfast, all the princesses (Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Snow White) took children by the hand and led them throughout the dining room in a parade. Little Miss went willingly with Snow White and loved all the attention. Then, we left and went to meet the rest of the family.

Vacation Update - Leaving on a Jet Plane

Two Fridays ago, we drove to the airport and went to FLORIDA! Little Miss was very excited. She loved all the informational pamphlets in the seatback in front of her. She thought the layout of the plane was her map. You can see her reaction below in the video. She must have said "according to my map" twenty times at least.
Husband is trained to sleep by the time the plane hits cruising altitude, but oftentimes, he is asleep before that. Little Miss was awake a little longer than that, but she sooned joined him. I stayed awake and read, enjoying the quiet and my window seat.
We arrived in Orlando and met up with a co-worker and her family who were flying home that evening. We then took the shuttle to meet up with the rest of my family (who drove and arrived earlier that afternoon). We had a nice dinner and caught up, but we had an early morning the next day.
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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Weekend Update - Fun with Friends

Last weekend was a busy one! On Friday, we cleaned the apartment for a visit from friends. Husband's childhood friend, his wife and son came to visit on Saturday morning. Their son and Little Miss got along quite well and played together. Then, we drove to Nephew's first birthday party! It seems like yesterday that we were driving to the hospital to catch our first glimpse of him. It was a nice party, and Little Miss had a blast. There was no nap and she stayed up very late (around 11PM) so she was a little trooper.


On Sunday, we had some family time before our friends came over and then we all went to Dogfish Head Alehouse for lunch. After, we went to the National Aquarium. I don't think it was worth the money, but I was always curious so now my curiosity is satisfied. Little Miss barely made it through the day. After barely sleeping the night before, she made it through the day, but then both of us took a glorious nap in the late afternoon.
This week has gone by smoothly. Little Miss has been so good and so full of personality. She has been getting so excited for Disney World. So, blog will be quiet for a week and then many updates and pictures coming at you!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Books Read in July 2011

  1. Chasin' Eight by Lorelei James (NOTE: This is part of a series. You can find more information and order in which to read here.)
  2. House of Daughters by Sarah-Kate Lynch
  3. Cowgirls Don't Cry by Lorelei James (NOTE: This is part of a series. You can find more information and order in which to read here.)
  4. The Lover's Dictionary by David Leviathan
  5. Corralled by Lorelei James (NOTE: This is part of a series. You can find more information and order in which to read here.)
Not a bad month for reading. Some of the books I had on my list forever. Two of the books were for book club. (So, I'm all set for book club in SEPTEMBER - weird, right?!)

Movies Watched in July 2011

  1. The Namesake
  2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
  3. The King's Speech
  4. Friends with Benefits
Good movies this month. I rented the odd numbers and saw the even numbers in the theater. I would recommend them all.