Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Packing It All In

Today we really packed it all in and I feel that we have really "done" Magic Kingdom. If we went home right now, I'd be fine with it. Here's how the day went...
  1. Jungle Cruise- still cheesy

  2. Aladdin's Magic Carpet- just like Dumbo

  3. Pirates of the Carribbean- little scary with skeletons, but not bad

  4. Swiss Family Robinson- kept asking where the family was (loves that movie now!)

  5. Country Bear Jamboree- terrible and Cavett wasn't that interested, but we got to cool off
  6. Train Ride to Toon Town

  7. Several character greetings- Robin Hood, Friar Tuck, Jimney Cricket, Max, Racoon from Poccahontas, Mr. Smee, Aristocats, Dopey

  8. Goofy's Barnstormer Roller Coaster- 30 second ride, rode 2X because line was so short
  9. Speedway

  10. Tea Cups

  11. Winnie the Pooh

  12. 3D Philharmagic

  13. Snow White

  14. Ate lunch at Pinnochio's Pizza

  15. Peter Pan- my favorite ride in Fantasy Land

  16. It's a Small World- 272 little dolls singing

  17. Ice Cream

  18. 3:00 Parade

  19. Nap
  20. Dad joined us back at aTommorow Land for Buzz Lightyear for the 3rd and 4th trip

  21. I went to Stich's Escape- Walt would definitely NOT approve. Sensory experience (smells, sprays, etc.) and I felt VERY violated. I thought it was a ride. Do not go to this...EVER.

  22. Astro Orbiter- like Dumbo, but fast and higher

  23. Monorail to Contemporary

  24. Dinner at Chef Mickey's with Micky, Minnie, Pluto, Donald and Goofy at 9:15

    Funniest part of the day was at dinner. Cavett finally got some good vegetables. We kept getting him to eat them by telling him that as soon as he ate a bite, a character would come over. He put some broccoli in his mouth just as Donald came over. But, Cavett wouldn't hug him or say hi until his mouth was empty. Donald had some funny moves waiting on Cavett, but hey, at least we are polite.

I highly recommend having a character meal that is toward closing. We were one of the last ones out of the restaurant, so we got lots of attention and it wasn't as crazy.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

First Day Without Dad

Dad left this morning before Cavett even woke up. We were on our own. We left the hotel around 8:30 and as soon as we headed toward the boat dock, the boat appeared. Perfect timing! We also hit Hollywood Studios perfectly as well. Little wait before we were actually allowed in with our tickets and then let loose in the park. He even received a "1st time" visitor button.

Immediately, we found ourselves at Mickey's Sorcerer's Apprentice Hat (which is the icon of this park.) Out stepped Minnie and Daisy! We were the second in line to take pictures. Then on the other side of the hat we found Donald. Again, very little wait!

However, because we took this little detour on our schedule, we ended up getting to Toy Story Mania a little late. By the time we got there, the line was already an hour wait and the FastPasses were for 11:10. By the time we got our FastPass, it said 11:55. An hour later, there were no FastPasses left for the entire day! It was really no problem, but I didn't see what all the hype was about. I just figured it was very much like the Buzz Lightyear game at Magic Kingdom.

So, we went to the Great Movie Ride. Nothing new in almost 20 years on this ride. It is how I remember it and had I remembered better before we got in, I wouldn't have taken Cavett. I had him close his eyes the entire time through the Alien set. Next up was sitting in line at Playhouse Disney's Show. It was ok, just puppets that we really couldn't see very well since we were on the front row. Would have been much better, had they used people or even just a tilted stage. Then we headed to Voyage of the Little Mermaid. Very disappointing. Ariel must have been new--bad acting, bad singing, and she messed up some of the words. How do you mess up "Part of Your World?" Doesn't every girl know the words to that song??? The show was also a let down especially after seeing Nemo at Animal Kingdom. There were puppets, but not as good as Nemo, they just showed a lot of the movie and Ariel "sang." Don't waste your time.

By this time Cavett was getting hungry so we stopped off for the 3rd meal in a row (besides breakfast) of chicken nuggets and french fries. Ugh! 12:00 rolled around and we headed to see what the "Buzz" was all about for Toy Story. It was fantastic and I think I would wait the extra hour. Luckily, we didn't have to though. When you walk in there are huge sets of "old school" toys-Tinker Toys, Operation, Blocks, etc. You wear a set of 3-D glasses and are in a little car with a funny little popping gun. You are whizzed through a track where you pass and stop at several different screens that show 3D animations of a scene at a fair's fairway. You shoot your gun at the items and rack up points. What makes it so much fun and better than Buzz Lightyear at MK is the fact that the aim is more accurate, you can see your ammo hitting the target, it's 3D and it's just plain cute! The reason why it is so popular besides the reasons named, is it is one of the only RIDES that little kids can and would want to do at this park. Highly recommended.

We briefly saw mater and Lightning, but this was as close as we could get. Next we hit yet another 3D movie, the Muppets. Again, 3D tricks, just ok compared to others. The rain then began and we were able to get to the boat again just as it was pulling up. A little ice cream in the lobby and he fell asleep in under 10 minutes as I am typing this up. He's been such a troop and we have had very few and very short melt downs. What a blessing!

Hopefully we can head to the pool later this afternoon. Tonight Stephen and I go to Universal Studios for the IACA Instructors dinner. Cavett will have a "fairy godmother" named Carrie, come stay with him while he catches up on his sleep tonight. Tomorrow we will head back to Magic Kingdom for Frontier Land and Adventure Land. Until then I'll leave you with a few more thoughts I have on Disney in general.......

Monday, July 28, 2008

Magic Kingdom with un pieu francais

Today was mainly spent at the Magic Kingdom. We got to the park in time to be toward the front of the gates when they opened at 9. It was a "Dumbo or Die" morning. We headed straight there and rode it 2X without any waits. In fact we accomplished ALL of Fantasy Land by 11:30 a.m. without any waits and we rode the Tea Cups (one of Cavett's favorites) 2x's as well. My favorite was Mickey's Philharmagic--another 3D movie, but much more kid friendly. Cavett also loved seeing Tigger and Pooh.

Next we headed toward Tommorow Land for an early lunch at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe and then on to Buzz Lightyear (Stephen's favorite). It was like an arcade game turned ride and you compete against the person you are riding with. Stephen won both times we rode. Lines were starting to build, but with the FastPass option, we avoided it, except for a 20 minute wait for the Laugh Floor of Monster's Inc. (Also rode Tomorrowland Transit Authority and Carousel of Progress).

We left the park to take a nap just as the rain began. Unfortunately, we were awoken though by renovations going on above us. So, we decided to go ahead and get up and go to Epcot via the boat. We had no reservations, but found an open table at Les Chef de Francais in France. Again, we split the meal and it was plenty of food and very tasty. Later, we headed toward the front of the park to Spaceship Earth. We rode SE and then took the monorail to the Magic Kingdom.

Cavett was able to ride in the nose of the monorail for both of the legs of the trip. It was the highlight of his day!

Once in the Magic Kingdom, we got some dessert and waited, and waited and waited for the parade and fireworks. Yes, they were spectacular, but it's just a lot of people in a little space waiting, and waiting. Did I mention we waited? :) Cavett still had fun blowing bubbles and made freinds with Roberto and Allie on either side of us. I don't think we will do the nightly parade/fireworks at MK again this trip, but I am glad we did it tonight. Tomorrow Dad will not be with us as we travel to Hollywood Studios. His meetings begin, but will have a few hours with us later in the week.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

What a Day!

This morning found us awake at 4:30 am. We headed to Whataburger for a bite and then off to the airport. Unfortunately, we seemed to be running behind "my" schedule and I was hurrying Stephen to the point of speeding. Unfortunately, a cop found us out and pulled us over on the beltway. Just when we thought he would for sure give us a ticket, he gave Stephen a warning. Maybe it was because we were in the "ghetto" car.

We made it to the gate just in time for perfect boarding. The flight was without a hitch as was getting to the hotel by town car. We stopped off at a grocery store for some breakfast/snack items and water. After checking in to the Dolphin, we went to our room. All I can say is--GI--ENORMOUS!!!!!!!! We weren't able to get a King and a pull-out, but this room is way better. It is a room and a half or maybe 2 rooms almost--2 beds, then a big kitchen like round table, a desk, a couch, 2 sitting chairs, a wet bar and a flat screen. The bathroom has two separate sink areas and two separate, huge closets. Not only that, but we can see Cinderella's Castle in the distance! I highly recommend this room.

After lunch at The Fountain, a soda shop grease pit at the hotel, we headed to Animal Kingdom. Immediately we hit "It's a Bugs Life" inside the Tree of Life. There was about a 10 minute wait and then we walked right to our seats. This is a 3D show with lots of sensory experiences. (Bugs blow wind toward you, fly at you, spew "acid" at you, and a stink bug "stinks" you.) After 5 minutes, Cavett was done and we left early. It was the first and worst experience of the day.

Cavett recovered as we headed toward Africa with an eye toward the safari. I don't know what the deal was today, but we only waited for one other Safari "Jeep" to head our way--max wait time 5 minutes. We saw all kinds of animals in their natural habitats seeming to roam free. At bedtime, that is what Cavett said was the most awesome thing of the day.

Next, we headed toward where we would wait for the parade. It was funny to follow the parade route where people were waiting. Cavett waved to everyone as if he were in the parade. I had scoped the "books" and they all said hit the parade 20 minutes after they start, back at where they end. It was the perfect place and we had lots of character attention.

Lion King was next. Again, we waited a mere 10 minutes! It was ok, just an amalgamation of the on stage musical. Nothing truly specatular, although the monkey gymnastics were fun to watch. Afterwards, we went to Nemo, the musical. SPECTACULAR!!!! It was like a miniature Broadway musical. Maybe it hit home, just becuase this musical/movie seems to be from a parent perspective, but it really was great. The puppetry was similar to Lion King and the songs were good.

As we left Nemo, we were hoping to hit the Kali River Rapids, but it was raining with lightning and thunder, so we decided on dinner at Yak and Yeti instead. Since we had a huge lunch, we opted to split Beef and Broccoli and Pork Pot Stickers 3 ways. Again, great food. We had an enjoyable ride home and had some ice cream at the hotel.

Cavett hit the pillow at 9:00 pm and never thought twice about putting up a fight. In fact, I have been on the computer for an hour and he hasn't even moved. Hopefully, our day at Magic Kingdom will be just as "magical!"

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Cuddle and a Thumb Smashing

For the past two nights Cavett and I have shared a King size bed at Grandmama's house. While it was fun to sleep with him, it was a little difficult. You see he is a cuddler in bed. You would think that would be great, but it is to the extent that he can't sleep and as a result you can't sleep. At one point around 1:00 am, he sat up and started feeling my face because I had rolled over away from him. I asked him if he was ok and his response was, "Yea, I just want to hug you." So sweet.

As I layed there with him with our arms around each other, I remembered laying next to Dadoo on the couch or on the bed. I remembered most of all his breathing. I wanted my breath to be insync with his breath. But, I remembered thinking that I couldn't hold my breath that long. Again, I wanted my breath to be insync with Cavett's, but this time I couldn't breathe that fast and it not feel funny. Oh well, it was still good to have my little boy in my arms and remember my father and how much he would have loved to be in my place with his grandson.

Today as we were leaving Grandmama's, Cavett smashed his thumb in the sliding glass door. Immediately tears fell and his thumb turned all shades of green, blue and purple. We managed with some ice, a bandage (for looks) and kisses until we got home. (He also got to hear about Dadoo losing half of his thumb when he was little!) When he got in the tub, he asked if he could "wash the purple off!" Dad decided that the pressure needed to be relieved and got a safety pin and tried to burn a hole into the nail. After three times and immense pain and agony, we prayed for God to give Cavett strength and to let the nail be pierced. It worked. Stephen got the hole poked and immediately Cavett felt better. Hopefully he won't loose the nail. Isn't God good?

Picture was taken after hole was pricked.

Friday, July 25, 2008

PhotoStory Friday

A perfect day at Grandmama's in East Texas....

Hay Bale Jumping

Pug Riding

Icee Drinking

Porch Swinging

Piano Playing






Fish Feeding

It doesn't get much better.

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Thursday, July 24, 2008


We made it to Grand Saline today with only a few mishaps. There was a treacherous bathroom experience at Chick-fil-A where an extra large drink was spilled and there was no baby changing station. (Have you tried juggling 2 kids in a public bathroom and you need to potty too?) Then there was major traffic delay due to an 18 wheeler accident on I-45. Eventually, I decided to brave the terrain and get to the feeder road, only to find that after passing the accident, the on ramp was under construction and closed and the feeder road ended. Stephen, my GPS, came in handy. After a bit of a scenic route, we made it back on track.

After dinner we spent some quality time outside enjoying the strong breeze from what, I am assuming, is part of Hurricane Dolly. Cavett found his bug catcher and was determinded to find bugs. First to be found was a locust shell, but he didn't want anything to do with it. Then the ant intrigued him. But, we are in East Texas--fire ants. Need I say more? I kept turning over rocks to try and find a roly-poly, but no luck.

Finally, I found a cricket and captured him. I really can't believe I did it. Something just came over me. I haven't touched any bug like that in years. I even had some kind of bug "juice" on my hands. ICK!!!! We managed to get him into the "Bug Catcher Jar" and Cavett was pretty excited. As bed time rolled around, we convinced Cavett to let him go and that we would catch him again tomorrow. We'll see.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Are these not the cutest? Found them at a consignment shop.

Sigourney Velvet

Besides packing, this is the reason why I haven't had the time to wander through blogs and give comments. There is a new baby on her way with a due date of July 27! Her parents, the Blumes are in our Sunday School class. I have desparetly been trying to get her quilt together for weeks, but it is so hard to find a long block of time to put it to it. (I don't like putting things down until they are finished or until there is a good stopping point.) Last night I finally finished it.

At first her parents just called her "Spawnette," but now they've resorted to calling her Sigourney Velvet. Of course it is a huge joke, but they can really pull it off with a serious face. Sigourney will have many laughs with her parents--they are fun people. We pray for her delivery that it is smooth and pray blessings for her life. May her parents also have wisdom and strength for all that lies ahead.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Heart of Gold

I know every mother thinks their child is the greatest, so I won't deny it. I fall into this category too. I think Cavett's personality is really coming through and it is so sweet. At first, I tossed it off as this is how I am training him to be, this is how we act, etc. So either, I have succeed (which I highly doubt) or it is just in his nature. It is the way God created him and I am sooooooo thankful!

For the past two Sundays, Isabela has come to our church to visit. Each time, Cavett has taken her by the hand and gently guided her on where to go and what to do. It is the sweetest thing the way he takes care of her. See Brenda's post.

Then today as we were leaving the mall, we passed by the Build-A-Bear Workshop Store. Cavett has never been there or done that. But he paused today to look. He nevered asked to go in or that he wanted one. I told him that maybe we would come back another day and make one. His comment was, "I need to make one for my girl." I wasn't sure I heard him right. I asked him, "what girl?" His reply was Anna Grace.

He is always watching out for the best interest of his girls and others. Ok, maybe not ALWAYS. But most of the time. What a loving spirit he has. If only we could all pull away the "me" curtain and focus more on others all the time, what a better place we would live in. At least we are blessed to know that God cares for us in this way.

"And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't he more surely care for you?" Luke 12:28

Monday, July 21, 2008

Kendrick's Day

Today seemed to be a Kendrick day. After we ran an errand this morning, we headed to church for SongPlay! Even though the class is a bit big this summer, I decided to take him to class with me. Luckily, I have a teacher's aid and she brings her middle school girls to help take care of everyone. Kendrick really did well and enjoyed it. Not once did he cry for me. Although, he watched me like a hawk!

This afternoon Cavett had his swim lesson and Kendrick napped. At 2, Cavett went down and Kendrick got up just before 3. We got to play alone for 2 hours. We were able to read a few books, play with tons of toys and chase up the stairs bunches. The accomplishment for the afternoon--he figured out how to make the recorder make sound.

He's a sweet little one and I will miss him tons next week while he is at Grandmama's house.

Family Moment Monday

As we were waiting in the car for a store to open this morning, Cavett found a toy we had received in a Whataburger Kid's Meal. It was a Whataburger version of "Mad Libs." You remember these from elementary school. They are stories with blanks left for specific words. They tell you what part of speech and you supply a word, not knowing the context of the story, so that when you read it with the substituted word, it ends up being pretty silly.

With a little help we were able to play the game and make up a pretty funny story. Instead of telling him, "give me a verb"--I say, "give me an action word." Instead of adjective, I say, describing word, etc. Sometimes, I have to give him a list of words to chose from, but he still gets a kick out of it. (He's 3 1/2, so don't think your kid may be too young. Give them a challenge. You never know what they may be able to accomplish!)

There are several places to get these free online as well as you can buy the original books. You can even make up your own with books that you read all the time to your kids. I think I will print a few to take with us on our upcoming trip!

Here is a list of websites to check out for your own Mad Libs. Have fun and laugh with your kids. Listening to them laugh is the best part of family time.

This post is hosted by Motherhood for Dummies.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


We are so proud of our Dad and husband today. This morning at 3:30 am, Stephen got up to catch a flight to Orlando for the AGD (Acadeny of General Dentistry) meeting. Today he will receive the FAGD (Fellowship in the Academy of General Dentistry) award. This means that he has completed 500+ hours of continuing education. Only 4% of the dentists in the nation are able to claim this honor and put these initials behind DDS. We are so very proud of him and wish we were there to watch.

Funny thing, the meeting is at the exact same hotel (The Dolphin) that we will be staying at next week during our trip to Disney World and Stephen's next dental meeting (IACA for LVI students). So, I can't wait till he gets home tonight to give us the preview of the place!

The Newest Member of Our Family

The newest member of our family is Roger. He is Cavett's pet rock that he brought home from Veggie Tales Camp on Thursday. He really didn't take a true liking to him until this morning. Roger received his name, he went on a car ride where he was given the play by play and he got to sit by the side of the pool and watch Cavett swim. Now he's watching Veggie Tales with Cavett. Funny, little imaginations they have.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Swim Lessons

Swim lessons began at the Hill house today. Sarah, a Pure Sound kid from St. Luke's came over to give Cavett swim lessons. The goal this week--safety and form.

Today they practiced floating on your back. She had him imagine that he had a cupcake on his belly button and he had to use his stomach muscles to keep the cupcake out of the water and from getting soggy. Later, he informed me it was a dark blue cupcake.

They also worked on keeping his legs straight while kicking. This was a bit tougher and will take most of the week to master. However, he showed her how to "swim like a squid"--to Cavett this is the butterfly kick. He has definitely mastered that one.

He was a bit shy to warm up and wasn't even sure about getting in the pool at first. But, after 5 minutes, he was in his element and he wanted to play with her, but not necessarily do what she wanted. Unfortunately, I was put in my place. I am so used to being the teacher. I wanted to be there and watch him and correct him when he wasn't listening. But, I decided that he would do much better if I were to go inside and let her deal with him. She was much more successful after that. He was very into diving for things on the bottom of the pool, so that was his reward when he did what she asked.

I guess this lesson was as much for me as it was for him. He's growing up and I can't be there (and I shouldn't be there) all of the time. I am reminded of one of my favorite musicals, Children of Eden, when Noah sings...

And it's only in Eden grows a rose without a thorn

And your children start to leave you

On the day that they were born

They will leave you there to cheer for them

They will leave you there to mourn ever so

Like an ark on uncharted seas their lives will be tossed

And the deeper is your love for them

The crueler is the cost

And just when they start to find themselves

Is when you fear they're lost

But you cannot close the acorn

Once the oak begins to grow

And you cannot close your heart

To what it fears and needs to know

That the hardest part of love

Is the letting go

Obviously, how God must feel about us is the same. I really don't think you can truly understand God's love for us until you have children of your own. It's an amazing and wonderful parallel that He has given us.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Unbelievable, but Cute

In the span of about 10 minutes during dinner tonight, we had spilled milk, throw up (too much pool water on top of dinner) and massive poop! Really, what can you do but laugh. Unfortunately, it was clean house day, but luckily, most of it stayed on the table or in the diaper.

Now for the cute part, Cavett's soap at his sink was in a different place since the maids came. He moved it over to the right place and on the side I commented to Stephen that there was another OCD tendancy. Stephen's comment was "he'll make a great dentist." Cavett's comment was, "but my hands need to grow so I can fit in the gloves and my head needs to grow so I can wear the mask." Precious.