Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!  Hope you’ve had a great holiday break so far!  (No school/work/alarms, ha!)

We have been traveling for Christmas this year.  We had planned on going to Disneyland three years ago, and then I was miraculously pregnant after five losses.  We stayed home to prevent any blood clots or problems, and we have a sweet little two-and-a-half year old to show for our sacrifice, ha!  ..But we never lost that desire to travel at such a magical time of year. : )

Last week, we planned a fun helium-balloon filled scavenger hunt filled with clues for the kids.  (We wanted a little build up for the trip!) (Plus my kids love a good scavenger hunt!)  They figured it out, and we spent two days packing and preparing.

It takes us about two days driving each way, and boy…  are we super glad when we reach our destination!  Let’s just say the first 8 hours either way are the worst.  By the second day, they are all adjusted and settled in to a cramped, van existence. : )  Only difference?  The luggage was sooo full going down..and now we have room!  That extra stuff is all over the van now, ha!  Post-Christmas, love!

We were headed to Disney Magic Kingdom on Christmas Day (I wanted to see Cinderella’s Castle!  Selfish?  Nah.)..but it was so busy, they had signs up that said FULL.  We were diverted. : (  We decided on Hollywood Studios since we love a good Tower of Terror dropping our tummies out from under us, or a Rockin’ Roller Coaster..or even playing in the Honey I Shrunk the Kids H.U.G.E. playground!  Sissy and I had cinnamon pecans (the smell lured us in..) and watched the Jedi training too while the boys climbed and played. : )  Those jedi younglings were so cute!

We also went to Christmas Mass at St. Mary’s of the Universe in Orlando.  It’s such a beautiful church.  We lit candles for a friend and his mom who is battling cancer, new drugs, and lots of confusion.  We are asking Mary to pray for both of them especially right now.

The next day we went to the (Florida Mall and the) American Girl store in Orlando, bought some of the sale Isabella (Girl of the Year 2014) stuff (yay!), and shopped a little there and at the outlets.  The weather for Saturday (Ethan’s birthday!) is HOT again, so we shopped for shorts and short-sleeved clothes!!

Then Ethan’s EIGHTH birthday!  Legoland!!  Ethan was sooo excited!  It really was a great day.  I think because we made the effort to get up early, we were there not long after they opened (this park fills up quickly and shut the gates too!).  We also had the kids check out the map and star the things they each wanted to do the MOST.  We did those FIRST!  They went to Driving School and got their licenses, then to Flight School, the Project X roller coaster, The Dragon roller coaster, played in a huge park, participated in a Build/Design Contest, and went up in the Island in the Sky.  We were sooo high, circling around looking over the park (I have to tell you..I got scared/sick as we reached the top/came down).  I get that “we’re-going-to –fall-and-die!” feeling!

Today we are on our way home.  We are nearing the break-in point..but not quite yet. Still some yelling/struggling/baby peeing in bottles going on, haha!  We must work harder to synchronize our bladders, yo.

Here are some pictures of the excitement thus far:

I’m praying for my family to have a conversion of heart as we celebrate the sixth day of Christmas today.  We all need to continue to bask in Christ’s glow and the joy in His coming..I could definitely use some shining up, and my family needs a little too.  I pray God m.o.v.e.s in my children.  That they remember the reason for the season.  We can teach and talk and show, but sometimes we have to leave it to the Holy Spirit to step in where we fall short.  (which is a lot obviously)  : )

** I might mention we will never go to Disney again for Christmas.  It was crazy busy all over town (not just being blocked from the Disney pinnacle of Christmas craftiness and decor!), traffic was backed up  every day, sometimes for HOURS.  It’s fun, but taxing.  We’ll be celebrating from the cozy comfort of our home next year, for sure! **

Praying you have a season of pure JOY at your house this holiday season!

Hugs, y’all!