Friday, July 22, 2016


I can't believe summer is already two months over! Here are some of our highlights! 

Clare chopped off her hair!
Jane and Sydney did a week of VBS.

Graham took swimming lessons. He's a little fish!
We played water balloon baseball!
Jane and Sydney spent a week at Pine Cove in the City!

We've been to Hawaiian Falls lots of times!

Clare has taken up sewing!
And we got Bryan and Morgan married!  Such a fun night!  Here's a glimpse!
Graham picked out his kindergarten backpack!
The girls participated in theater camp, and put on the play Pinocchio.  Jane and Sydney were school kids, Clare was one of the "cool kids," and Graham was just a goofball audience member!
Still to come... lake weekend, Clare's first overnight camp, and Colorado!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Disney: Day 4 and Going Home

We spent the morning at Animal Kingdom on our last day.  We started with Kali River Rapids...which is a risky move first thing in the morning! We rode Dinosaur, Triceratops Spin, Primeval Whirl, and we got everyone on Expedition Everest!!!
We watched the Lion King show and saw It's A Bug's Life before our fast pass on the safari.  The safari ride is so well-done, and we saw lots of cool animals.
Before leaving this pro, we decided to hit Kali River Rapids one more time....Graham wanted to get soaked.  We were successful!
We headed back to our house for some rest before returning to Mahic Kingdom for our final evening.   We did Splash Mountain again, Haunted Mansion, and settled in for the evening festivities. We saw the Electrical Parade, and Cinderella's Castle show. Unfortunately, it started raining, so we didn't get to see the fireworks. We rode a few more rides, and then called it quits! We felt like we had made the most of our time there!!
The next morning we woke up super early to fly home. We had to fly to Miami and catch a connecting flight home. Much to our surprise, we were seated in first (maybe business?) class on the way home. The kids (and Casey and I) were in HEAVEN! It was fabulous! Tons of room and seats that lay completely horizontal! It couldn't have come at a better time.
The trip was the stuff memories are made of! Many thanks to Deedee for another amazing Disney experience!

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Disney: Day 3

Hollywood Studios Day!  Star Wars Day!  Jedi Training Day!  The kids (especially Graham) were excited about visiting this park!

We got to the park and headed straight to sign up for the Jedi Training...which turned out to be the right thing to do.  The line was quite long, but all four kids got a slot in the morning.  We headed over to ride Star Tours and watch the Muppet 3D movie before it was time for training. 

It was a HOT day, but the kids were ready to take on Darth Vader.  They got fitted in their robes, and headed over to meet their opponents.

Here they were receiving their instructions.  This was serious business!

Clare and Graham battled the Seventh Sister.

Sydney and Jane took on Darth Vader!

 Despite the heat, all four of the kids loved the Jedi Training.  The force was strong with these four!

It was time to head to our lunch reservation at Hollywood and Vine.  Here we met Sophia the First, Doc McStuffins, Handy Manny and Jake!

After lunch, we had fast passes for Toy Story Mania, a crowd favorite!  Then, we scooted over to watch the Frozen Sing-Along.  This was a such a great show.  The kids loved the "snow" at the end! 

We headed back to the house to have some down time because we were planning on watching the Star Wars fireworks that evening.  Upon returning to the park, we met some jawas at Launch Bay!

We watched the Little Mermaid Show and then we grabbed a spot for the Star Wars fireworks show. 

Disney does everything well, and the fireworks were no exception!  The show was amazing!  We decided to stay late and watch Fantasmic before leaving the park.....very late, I might add!  One more day!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Disney: Day 2!

After a full night's rest, we were ready to head back out!   We began the day with a great breakfast at Chef Mickey's.  We met the whole gang!

We started at the Speedway.  We determined we have some terrible drivers amongst us!  We did Seven Dwarfs again, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Winnie the pooh and Pirates of the Caribbean.  

We were determined to try a Dole Whip on this trip, and we checked that off our list!  Refreshingly sweet!

We hit Splash Mountain and Ariel's Under the Sea ride.  It was mid-afternoon, and we we're losing steam.  But through a series of events, we had scored some awesome "use anywhere" fast passes.  So, we decided to head over to Epcot and hit our old favorite ride...Soarin'! 

I'm not sure it was anyone's favorite this year, but it was so nice to be able to ride it.  (It has been closed for renovation for months!)  We also rode Test Track, which was really fun!  An added bonus was running into one of Graham's favorite characters....Baymax!

Everyone was wiped out!  We headed back to the house for a dip in the pool and a much-needed good night's sleep!  The next day we were headed to Hollywood Studios!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Disney: Day 1

The excitement levels were at all an all-time high for our second trip to Disney World!  We had a super early flight on Friday morning, but our kids were up and at 'em with very little rousing!  Deedee flew to Orlando the day before us, and was there to pick us up from the airport. 

The kids were excited that Mickey had left them some souvenir gift cards!

We quickly headed to Magic Kingdom!

We covered some major tracks on Friday afternoon.  The weather was overcast and very pleasant, and we made good use of our half day! 

We rode Astro Orbiter,

Buzz Lightyear (Graham is checking to see if his laser works!)

Dumbo, the Barnstormer, and we got everyone on Space Mountain!  Graham loved it!!  He turned out to be quite the thrill seeker.  Clare was not quite as big a fan.  She hated Space Mountain on this trip!

We had fast passes for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train....such a fun ride.  One of my favorite pictures from the whole trip....Graham loved this ride!

We finished the day with Mickey's PhilharMagic and the classic "It's a Small World" and were excited to see our names on the screen!

It was getting late, and our energy was running low, so we left Magic Kingdom for the night!  Day one was success!!!