Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Date to the Aquarium

Steve and Lisa are more like family than friends so we always try to work in a visit with them when we are in CA and they always spoil us in return.  We met up with them for dinner and Creed didn't hesitate to get cosy.
We spent the rest of the evening at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach.  Creed hadn't been since he was a wee little thing, but it was amazing how much he remembered, and he couldn't wait to go pet the sharks.
The aquarium happened to be open late and it was fun to see everything in the dark.

My favorite part of the evening was when we came across some volunteers cleaning a tank.  Ollie got a lot of waves and Creed was happy to get a high five.
Thanks for spoiling us Steve and Lisa!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Disney Break

It was too cold to go swimming while we were in California, but it wasn't too cold to check out the tide pools at Crystal Cove. 

 It was cold and the boys were soaked, but they would have stayed all day.  Only the promise of brunch with Erin and her kids pulled them away.  Thanks to Erin's suggestion, we had waffle sandwiches at Bruxies, and I can't stop thinking about them.

 And right next door Creed found the souvenir he wanted to take home to commemorate this trip. Too bad it wouldn't fit in my suitcase.

Monday, March 26, 2012

You can't go on a Disney Cruise without making a stop at Disneyland, can you?

I like Disneyland, but Larry LOVES Disneyland and about every six months, he starts hinting that we should take a trip. I usually roll my eyes because there are plenty of other amazing things to see and do, but I have to admit there is something magical about watching your kids experience Disneyland.  Since our cruise left from LA, we decided to embrace the whole experience and spend a few days at Disneyland too (although I did insist on some non-Disney related time in between).  We flew in a day early for the cruise and spent the evening before at Disneyland.  We didn't tell the kids we were planning to do this because we were afraid our flight might be late and it might not work out so it was a fun surprise. Even though we didn't get there until the afternoon, it was really fun to see the park when it was still decked out for Christmas.  Ollie is a big Mickey fan so he was excited.
And I don't think I need to describe how excited Creed was.
It's A Small World was decorated for Christmas and the music rotated between "It's a Small World" and "Jingle Bells" which was a nice change.
We also caught the Christmas parade.
And we ran into these friendly faces from home and had dinner with them
Ollie was worn out so Larry headed back to the car with him while Creed and I stayed just a bit longer to see the castle lit up with icicles and watch the fireworks and then the snow on Main Street (which was really just foamy bubbles that looked like snow, but it was pretty fun)

After the cruise we headed back for two more days and the boys had a blast.  Creed is pretty scared of most of the rides, but Ollie is happy to go on anything. He was busy trying to see everything.

 The highlight for Creed was definitely meeting Rapunzel.  She didn't make an appearance on the cruise so she was the only character he really wanted to find at Disneyland.  He was so nervous beforehand, and he talked about meeting her for weeks afterwards.

 Toy Story Mania has caused tears from Creed in the past, but it was his favorite ride this year.

 And on our last day we spent time with two sets of friends at the park.  Our friend Erin brought her kids to play and our kids were overjoyed to go on rides with them.

 And the same day we had a totally unexpected run-in with friends from our old neighborhood in Salt Lake and had dinner with them
 And every night, the boys looked like this one the way to the hotel.
 One of the best benefits of Disneyland is how well they sleep afterwards!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

VIP Status

 Larry's twin cousins, Trent and Trevor, had just come home from serving two year missions, and Creed loved hanging out with him on the cruise.  They were sweet to come get him for a special trip for ice cream just about every day.  I think they also liked having Creed as an excuse to do some of the little kids things like meet characters and volunteered to take him a few times (which we greatly appreciated).  Trevor and Creed became friends with a cast member when they were waiting in a long line to meet Stitch and later she tracked us down and invited Creed to a VIP character meet and greet the last night of the cruise. I didn't even know there was such a thing so it was a fun surprise. 

It was late so I stayed with Ollie in our cabin while the boys went, not expecting much.  It turns out all the characters were there, in fact there were more characters than visitors so the characters were standing around waiting to talk to people.  Larry said he even had to politely tell Minnie to move on because she was just hanging around them, which he could only take so much of because she can't actually talk.  Haha!

 I'm not sure if we have Creed's cuteness to thank for the event of Trevor's.

 And I'm not sure if Creed enjoyed it more of Larry!