Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Disneyland Trip

Our family went to Disneyland with two other families that are friends of ours, the Petersons and the Finlinsons.We had a lot of fun!
Day 1, Wednesday, January 21st:

We left in the afternoon and headed to St. George. We met up with the Petersons and had Cafe Rio, then did a little shopping and got ice cream. We then headed to the house where we were spending the night, which was a home show home a few years ago, it was really nice.
Day 2, Thursday, January 22nd:

The next morning only 20 minutes out and 2 potty stops later we got headed towards Baker, CA where we stopped at the Mad Greek for some lunch. Wow, we won't be stopping there ever again. The food was not that great to say the least. Then we continued on to Anaheim, CA where we checked in at our hotel, the Desert Palms Hotel & Suites, which was just down the street from Disneyland. We had a large suite that had two rooms connected with a shared vanity. Let's just say it was a little cozy, but it was cheaper to share than to get our own rooms and it was fun for Madelyn and Alexa to be together.

After unpacking, we headed to Disneyland. Ty and I bought annual passes since we're going back with my family in October. Madelyn and Audrey were mesmerized as we entered into the park. We headed towards Pinocchio and Snow White, and after those two, Audrey was screaming, they were a little too loud and dark. So then we went on a few happy rides after that...Dumbo, the Casey Jr. Circus Train, the Carousel, and Alice in Wonderland. Our last ride of the evening was the Matterhorn, Addison, Madelyn, and Alexa were now tall enough to go, which is amazing because it was fast and a little scary for the girls. Madelyn was covering her eyes most of the time. Here is a video clip talking about the ride the next day...

Then we headed back to our hotel. Our kids both crashed on the way home.

Day 3, Friday, January 23rd:

We headed back to Disneyland in the pouring rain that morning. Fortunately our stroller has a great rain cover that kept the kids dry, and I had bought an umbrella in St. George so we were prepared, however while waiting in lines was when we got really wet. The girls also couldn't help jumping in the puddles. We headed back to our hotel after lunch to change rooms because our room was right next to the pool and the elevator and it was really loud. We then gave our girls a little nap and changed clothes. Then we headed back for more fun. We ate at a great little Mexican place for dinner and then went and watched the show Fantasmic. We finished off with a few more rides. We played hard and stayed until the park was closed at 10pm. Here are the rides we rode that day: Buzz Lightyear, Space Mountain, Jungle Cruise, Pirates of the Caribbean, Winnie the Pooh, Splash Mountain, Indiana Jones, Finding Nemo, and Autopia.

Day 4, Saturday, January 24th:

It was raining a little in the morning, but fortunately it didn't last long. We spent most of the day in California Adventures. We first rode Monsters, Inc. then headed to Disney Animation and saw Turtle Talk with Crush, which was fun. Then we saw the Disney Playhouse show, which Madelyn loved because that's mostly what she watches on tv. It was fun to watch her get so excited when each new character came out. We then rode Toy Story, which was one of our favorite rides. Then the adults took turns with the rider switch ticket and rode California Screamin', which made me feel like a teenager again. We then had lunch and then spent time in Bugs Land and rode the rides there and saw the show, "It's Tough to Be a Bug". Next we went on Soarin' Over California taking turns with guys and girls, and then watched the Pixar parade, although Madelyn had fallen asleep and missed the whole thing. Then we took turns as couples and rode the Tower of Terror, wow! After that we headed back to Disneyland and ate dinner. Madelyn wanted to ride Dumbo one more time and then the guys offered to take the girls back to the hotel and put them to bed while Liz and I rode a few more adult rides. We took the offer and ran around riding Star Tours, which made us sick, then Thunder Mountain Railroad, Splash Mountain twice, and finally ended up with Space Mountain. We were very tired and dizzy by the time we were done. So we headed back to the hotel and crashed.

Day 5, Sunday, January 25th:

We packed our things up, ate breakfast, and loaded the car. Then we drove down to the ocean in Newport and drove down Balboa Island. We headed home stopping at In and Out Burger on our way out. We drove as fast and hard as we could knowing that we would be hitting a storm soon. We stopped in St. George meeting up with the Petersons and had a late dinner at the Cracker Barrel, which was very average, then headed back on the road at 9:30pm. Sure enough we hit the storm in Cedar City, where it was snowing pretty hard. It took us 5 1/2 hours from St. George. We drove between 30 and 40 mph on horrible roads. We didn't get home until 3 am. We were exhausted.

We had a great time and look forward to going back in the fall with my family! Here are some pictures from our trip.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Draper Temple Open House

Today we had the opportunity to go to the Draper Temple Open House with my family. Wow! It was absolutely beautiful or should I say stunning! This morning I told Madelyn, "We're going to see the new temple today." and she said, "Yes, and we're going to get married!" Not quite. When we got to our assigned church, we watched a video on the importance of temples. Then we boarded a bus that drove us to the temple. We walked all through it and then they took us in to a sealing room where they talked to us about eternal families and the importance of the ordinances that are performed in the temples. Next we were ushered through a heated tent to the LDS chapel nearby where they had cookies and bottled water along with missionaries to answer any questions along with beautiful pictures of Christ and other temples around the world. Finally we took the bus back to the church where we had parked. On the bus ride back Madelyn had to sit on a sister missionaries lap because it was so full and Ty was standing, and she was telling the sister, "When I get big like mom, I'm going to wear a white dress and get married in the temple. And when I turn eight, I'm going to get baptized." It's amazing what a two year old remembers. Anyway, what a neat experience to be in the Sealing Room with my little family and look through the mirrors and see us all together and know that we are eternal. I'm so grateful for my own sealing and temples that are so available to us. I encourage anyone who hasn't gone to go. It's amazing. Here's the link to reserve tickets...

Monday, January 5, 2009

Christmas in Canada

This year we went to Canada for Christmas to be with Ty's family. We were gone for 2 1/2 weeks. We left on the 18th and headed to Ty's parents in Stirling...14 hours later we arrived. The kids did pretty well. We spent a few days hanging out with family there, then on the 20th headed up to Ty's sisters in Calgary for a day. They had twins, Rosco and Atalia a month before we had Audrey and they also have Gatlin who is just a few weeks younger than Madelyn so it was a little crazy to say the least. Then on the 21st after church we headed up to Banff, which was absolutely beautiful. It is a national park nestled in the Rocky Mountains, and the mountains are stunning. We spent 3 days in Banff. Ty's parents for Christmas got all the families rooms at the Douglas Fir Logde. There was a huge indoor playground for the kids and an indoor pool with two big waterslides, which Madelyn loved. We played there all day Monday. Then our kids crashed at 7pm so we went out to dinner with some of our family while Ty's parents stayed in our room and watched our kids, which was nice. Then Tuesday we went to the Banff Springs Hotel and toured around. Here are a few photos.
Then the girls walked through all the little shops while the guys stayed and played with the kids at the hotel. That night we all met at the local LDS church and had pizza together. (It's the only place that would accomodate all 35 of us.) Then Christmas Eve we headed back to Lethbride and went to his sister Alauna's house to stay for the next few days. We had dinner at another sister, Marina's house and watched the Nativity Story. Then wrapped some gifts and went to bed. Christmas morning we went upstairs to open gifts and Madelyn grabbed the first one she saw and started ripping open the paper regardless of who it belonged to. We stopped her and she flung herself on the floor and started throwing a tantrum. Here is a picture the first few minutes of Christmas morning.Here are a few more pictures from the morning while opening gifts.

We then went out to Ty's parents for breakfast and then met at their church and had a big lunch. Then we went back to his parents and opened some gifts and played games and hung out the rest of the night. It was the first Christmas I have been away from home ever. It was quite different but good to be with Ty's family. When I called home my mom started to cry. They told us that they had given each family a week trip in California and three days in Disneyland in October of this year.

Over the next week and a half we hung out with each of the different siblings and their families...ate a lot of food, played a lot of games, and dealt with a lot of toddler tantrums and baby cries. It was fun. Then on Friday, January 2nd we packed up to come home, drove one hour in crazy, windy, snowy weather and the border was closed because I-15 in Montana was closed, so we turned around and headed back to his parents for another day. On our way back, our car overheated and we barely made it home after several stops, prayers, and then driving at 30 mph. We stayed another night, got the car fixed (replaced the thermostat and flushed the radiator) and headed home on Saturday, the 3rd. Wow, I've never been so happy to pull into my garage as I was the other night. 17 days is a long time to be gone from home. Here are a few other pictures from the trip.

This is Alauna and Austin's front door after a big snow drift that blew in from a field behind their house. So then they dug a little tunnel for the girls to play in. Crazy!

Madelyn stuck these stickers from a create a face sticker book on her own face. Silly girl! A random picture of the girls.Our little Christmas tree that we decorated in our hotel room in Banff.Audrey and her Aunt Marina and cousin Holly.Ty and Madelyn just after coming down the waterslide.

Audrey and her Teething Biscuit

Audrey has started eating solid food now, and she can't get enough of it. I pulled out a teething biscuit for her, and it was a huge mess, but made for some cute photos.