Thursday, January 22, 2009

Our Disney Cruise

   Aboard the Disney Wonder Cruise ship, we discovered the best family vacation destination!
We flew to Orlando on Saturday and boarded the cruise ship on Sunday morning. The kids were dying to swim so we hit the pools first. The Mickey pool had a water slide that all four kids enjoyed. Next it was time to eat......something we did more times than I thought possible. The kids loved the idea of sleeping on the ship. We had 2 adjoining rooms and it worked perfectly. One night was Pirate Night. We all dressed up like pirates and hung out with Captain Jack. The kids wouldn't stop dueling with their plastic swords.
Travis and I spent the last night in the best restaurant we've ever eaten at, Palo. It requires reservations and is the only restaurant that isn't free. They served the most delicious Northern Italian cuisine. I had halibut and Travis had a shrimp pasta and lobster ravioli. We shared 3 (yes, 3!) desserts, including chocolate souffle. Amazing!

A huge highlight included a dolphin excursion on a private island off the coast of Nassau, Bahamas. We got to pet, hug, kiss, and dance with "Goombay" the dolphin. Ryan was terrified and Ethan was hesitant. The girls were so into it!
Olivia waiting for a kiss.

Ella going in for a hug.
They original pirate ship from "Pirates of the Caribbean" is beached in the water.

The girls really wanted their hair braided with corn rows. It was a bit painful and they didn't know what they were getting into.

But what a cute result. It was quite expensive, though. The braids can last 3-4 weeks so I'm going to get my money's worth. The girls still have their cute braids today...a week and a half later!
We absolutely loved every minute of our trip. Travis is all ready to plan another one. (we'll try to wait a year or two) We thought Disneyland was great, but this was phenomenal! And the ship didn't even have rides. We highly recommend it to any Disney fans. You won't regret it. It was wonderful to be together as a family and have everyone enjoy it so much.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Christmas Morning

Our kids woke us up early...we told them not to get out of bed before 7 am but by 6:45 they couldn't wait any longer. Apparently they had all been in Olivia's room playing a game waiting for 7 am to come. How funny is that? We ceremoniously walked downstairs to see what Santa left everyone. The kids immediately ran to each of their piles by their stockings and opened presents from Santa. The excitement level was so high! Travis and I love to hear the screams and shouts of delight as each of our kids see what they got.
My silly boy, Ethan. Such a sweetheart. He can't contain his excitement.
Ella in her new skates and eating a treat from her stocking.
Remember the Big Wheel? We couldn't resist.
All the kids in their new jammies on Christmas Eve.
Ryan kept asking for a Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Happily he found one in his stocking.
Another classic...remember the 2 car race track with the toggle handles? Keeping your car on the track around the curves is a challenge.
We gave Olivia a mystic topaz ring to match one I got in Cozumel. She loved it and wears it constantly.
Ella kept asking for the Dora that turns into a mermaid. Santa didn't disappoint.
I do love to see my kids showing the love to each other!
We followed the present opening with our traditional breakfast burritos with the rest of my family later that morning. We do the whole spread....huge flour tortillas from a taco shop, scrambled eggs, honey-baked ham, cheese, my dad's homemade salsa, guacamole and homemade cinnamon rolls. YUM! It's a family favorite that we all look forward to. The kids ran around playing with their new things and hanging with the cousins. It's blissful mayhem! We love it all and Christmas wouldn't be the same with out it.