Thursday, December 30, 2010

Ho, Ho, Ho!

Elisabeth loves Santa.  ...or at least the concept OF Santa.  She loves pictures of him, she loves chocolates with his face on the front, she loves old men that have long, white beards.  She loves to say HO, HO, HO whenever any of these things show up.  She does not however, enjoy sitting in Santa's lap.  I think I mentioned that in a post prior.

Anyway, back to Santa.  I'm still unsure of whether or not to emphasize Santa in our home.  I felt really disappointed when I found out he wasn't real, but strangely enough, I was more disappointed to find out the tooth fairy was just my mom.  That's where I felt really ripped off.  So when it comes to that, we've decided that instead of exchanging gifts, we would go on a trip instead (money allowing).  I absolutely adore this idea.  So family members of mine, if you ever want to go with us, let me know!--cause chances are, we won't be coming to you as that trip. ;)

We've had a really great Christmas break.  I can't believe how needed it was.  I'm not entirely excited to go back to work on Tuesday, but the memories of difficult children have softened just a least enough to hold strong until Spring Break! hahaha

Back to gift giving - we still had some wonderful gifts from grandma's and grandpa's for all of us to open.  It was fun to watch Elisabeth's reactions to everything.  It was all very exciting for her :)

This is a guitar she got from her babysitter- it is perfect!!
Oooooohh!!! sticks that you bend and they light up!
She was so excited to see what was in each box!
Daddy, let me show you how to do it.

Bye Daddy! (well, really, she calls him Papa)- I'm going away with my car and wand!


Showing everyone her really good coloring skills on her new coloring table

I had to just put this in.  hehehe I am attempting buttebeer recipes.  This one was OK.  I think something is funny tasting with our cream soda...I'll keep you updated. :)

It's still cool :)

I don't know if you can tell well, but she is soaked. We played in puddles

Beautiful flowers from Nana Clark for Christmas
The poor girl is teething like mad.  We found gloves helped. :)
Look! I fit in my toy car box!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Keys and the 'Glades

We went down to the Everglades National Park to check out some gators.  For those that can't remember (me), and those that aren't sure, alligators have the wide snout, whereas crocodiles have the long, narrow snouts.  I always thought it was the other way around.

We got to go on a little airboat tour of a swampland where a bunch of alligators live.  We also got to go to a demonstration of how to handle gators, and cool tricks people can do with them (don't try this at home things!). We got to hold a baby gator, but it's mouth was taped shut cause their bite would snip our fingers off.  We also got to see a feeding "demonstration." They fed the gators some rats and chickens, but these are more like snacks.  The guy was telling us they feed the gators 2 times a year and put a couple tons of meat at different locations in their enclosure, and this will last them for the year.  He was saying that an alligator can eat a duck and he can live on that for a YEAR....amazing.  They're also very creepy looking since they stay so still..especially when their mouths are open.

Once we were done there, we went over to Biscayne National Park since it was only 30 mins away.  Most of the park is underwater :)

THEN since we were down in Southern Florida anyway, we drove down to Key Largo and were just in time for the sunset.  It was beautiful.  I would love to spend some more time down there some day.

(I'm having technical difficulties, I'll get pictures up files were filled to the brim, so I'm having to delete before I can add more....bummer)

Atlantic Ocean

The weather wasn't *ideal* while in Florida, but it was nice to get out of the rain, and into the sunshine.  It stayed around 70-75 degrees, and the water was probably right around the same temperature.  Once you got in the water, it was fine, and we were able to play for quite some time.  Ellie loved the waved hitting her little body, she loved running her toes and fingers through the sand.  I think if we let her, she would have stayed for hours (and naps allowed ;) )

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

I can't lie, we went to Universal Studios for me, and for me alone.  Drew was an awesome sport about it and found things he was excited to do.  I'm glad I didn't feel like I was dragging him around.  The reason we went there was because during the summer, they opened up a section called The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  It's a tiny little Hogsmead village where you get to experience magic at it's finest.  They do have an Olivander's there when it should really be in Diagon Alley, but I'm not complaining.

To get IN to this section, you have to be one of the first people to enter the park.  OR you can get a "come back in 2 hours" ticket, but these quickly deplete and are gone by noon.  After that, you must wait in line for upwards of 2 hours go get in.  Once you're in, it is packed to the brim.  You are shoulder fighting everyone.  I thought they were joking when they said it had reached capacity.  The shops (Filtch's Emporium, Zonko's, Honeydukes, Olivander's, Derbish and Banges) were all ridiculously crowded.  You seriously had to trade places with others to MOVE.  BUT I still went in and bought a ton of stuff.  I think it was worth it.  Drew stayed outside of Filtch's because that was the worst and it was stressing Ellie out.

At Olivander's, I had been told that a person in your group get's to be "the chosen one" and have a wand choose THEM....well, I had thought this meant in my group as in Drew, Ellie and me....turns out, it's the group of however many people they can shove into the little room for Olivander to do his speech.  I was a little saddened by this.  I still got to choose a wand that people outside of Olivander's/Derbish and Banges didn't get to choose.  I got a wand made of Holly, 15" long and has a core of Centaur tail hair. ;) (we made up the core, cause we're that cool).

We didn't go on any of the 3 rides in there because there was over a 2 hour wait for all of them.  I figure when the hype dies down in a couple years, we'll go back and I can go on the rides :)

The rest of Universal was really fun.  Seussville was really cool - I liked that it was so kid friendly there.  On the other side of the park, they also had quite a few kid friendly activities as well....Barney land, Fival playground, etc.  I think Elisabeth had a really good time on the little amount of sleep she got.

The whole thing was marvelous!! I'm so glad we got to go.

Friday, December 24, 2010


I am exhausted! I think I'm going to just post a few pictures and go into stories tomorrow since I've been up for 20 hours. :P

Florida was perfect.  We're all beat, but happy.  Elisabeth was perfect and only started getting grumpy the last 30 mins on the last plane ride (awesome!) - we did everything we set out to do, and got everything we wanted! Merry Christmas to us, AND you!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

My Little Squishy

I love getting pictures taken. They are so very stressful to me.  There weren't as many good ones as I would have liked.  Miss Cakes was more interested in hunting down the train to say, "CHOO CHOO" and sit in it, spin the wheel around and push backward.  Since she couldn't do that the whole time, she was a grump.  I bribed her with a candy cane which worked for about 5 minutes.  She ate the WHOLE THING and the insisted on the train again. Exhausting.

We then went to see Santa Clause.  She hated it. She screamed and protested.  She was literally crawling over me so she wouldn't have to sit with him.  I got a picture. :)

Afterward, we went to Drew's Christmas party.  It was fun. :)  I was supposed to go to a going away party for a friend, but the three of us were so exhausted that I just dropped my goodies off and we came home.

Maybe tomorrow won't be as crazy.

Miss Conductor Jones

Sunday, December 5, 2010


I realized tonight that life is pretty boring some weeks.  I'm perfectly happy with that.  I have other weeks where everything is double booked and I have to let something go, and that can be pretty frustrating.  Next week is like that.  Then I have to pack.  I hate packing. I don't know if I've ever told anyone that, but packing up for a vacation is almost worth not going at all.  It's extremely stressful on me.  Oh well, we'll have a good time!

My plan on our trip, is to go to the Everglades, maybe down and drive around the Florida Keys a little bit (I don't think we'll make it to Key West- It's a 4 hour drive each way from where we're staying, and I know Drew and I could do it, but I just don't want to make Elisabeth sit in the car for 8 hours). (wow, run on sentence!)  We're going to go up to Harry Potter land at Universal Studios (which is a 3.5 hour drive, but this is mainly why Key West is out since we'd be doing it 2 different days).  I don't think we'll do regular Universal Studios, cause otherwise I think we'd need to spend a night up there, and there's only like 2 or 3 total rides that I know Elisabeth can go on.  So any other rides we do, we're going to have to go solo while the other waits, which could get bad if there's long lines. :/  We'll probably go play on the beach.  Maybe visit the Miami zoo?  Any other good ideas for us to go check out???

 mmmm banananananas!!

 Future softball pitcher right there


I didn't intentionally take pictures of her eating, but I guess that's all she does lately.  She also likes wrapping paper and Hermie the Elf.  (Who doesn't?!?)