Friday, January 30, 2009


I finally got to see Australia! I have wanted to see this film....well...forever. I thought I would have to await dvd viewing, but it made to our $1 movie!!!! I had to ask the kids to give me the gift of watching it with me, as they weren't all thrilled with the description I had provided. Oh man, it was fabulous. I love being swept away into a story, into characters, into a landscape. This movie did all of that for me. I am a huge fan of the director, Baz Luhrmann , and am blown away by his vision and ability for making movies. The kids' reaction was mixed. They liked it more than they thought they would, but always have a hard time when a character they have grown to love or identify with dies. I am at a loss as to how to explain that the sadness of losing someone (even a beloved fictional character) can still lead to enjoyment, understanding, awareness, and in the end, even happiness. The story provoked a wide range of discussions, which will weave themselves in and out of our lives for years to come. This is one of the glories of being open to beauty, learning, passion, and art in all of the varied formats available to us.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

This Game is So Much Fun

These are the words spoken by my kids regarding World of Warcraft. Thanks to some extreme tutelage from the Traaseth family, all 4 of the kids are happily creating characters, leveling up, going on quests, exploring new territories, battling beings, and having a blast. This game has brought so much into our lives, it's hard to describe how many areas it has touched: percentages, problem solving, orienteering, budgeting, language arts, keyboarding, leadership, arithmetic, patience, time management, cooperation, gratitude, etc....and we've only just begun. The kids have only been playing for about a month, and they continue to expand their world everyday through this game.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Best and Worst

My sister introduced us to a dinner-time concept of listing our best and worst of the day. As we ate our last lunch at Disney, we all shared our best and worst regarding this much anticipated family vacation. My best and worst were very closely related. I wanted the kids to see and do EVERYTHING possible on what will most likely be our one and only family trip to Disney. In order for them to get to see and do everything, I had to do some major planning, and we all had to do some major scrambling to fit it all in. Everyone in my family was really sick of my very fast walking pace, and by the end wanted to slow things down. I was able to slow it down here and there, but my control issues were rearing their head on this trip. So, my best was that we went all out and truly got to experience all that Disney had to offer. My worst was that I rushed us all a bit too much in order to get it all in.

As for our favorite and least favorite aspects of goes:
-The most unexpected delight was the musical water fountain at Epcot. It was incredible. All in all, Epcot was our favorite park.
-Sophie's favorite experience was the World Showcase at Epcot.
-Alex's favorite rides were Space Mountain and Rock n Roller Coaster.
-Ella's favorite was Test Track, Soarin' and Expedition Everest.
-Max's favorite ride was Rock n Roller Coaster and his favorite experience was World Showcase at Epcot.
-My favorite rides were Expedition Everest, Test Track, and Tower of Terror.
-John's favorite was getting to hang out with us all just playing...and the roller coasters.
-Our collective least favorite outing was going to Disney Quest. Our biggest disappointment was that the Hayao Miyazaki kiosk was no longer at the Japan showcase.
-Sophie's least favorite attraction was the Finding Nemo musical theatre show at Wild Kingdom.
-Alex's least favorite attraction was Honey I Shrunk the Audience at Epcot.
-Max's least favorite attraction was Finding Nemo at Wild Kingdom and all the walking.
-Ella's least favorite attraction was Honey I Shrunk the Audience at Epcot.

Hollywood Studios

Sci Fi Dinner Theater

" Manhattan"

Virtual Suckiness at Disney Quest

Future Idols

"Tibet" in Animal Kingdom

Ella in "Japan"

Chip n Dale

Ella with the Amazing Chinese Acrobats

English Mideval Swords

Getting our Star Wars fix

We will never forget this experience and I am so glad we were able to make this vacation happen.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Where Dreams Come True

It's true...Disney is Magical! We LOVE it!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Quick Visit

We dashed over for a quick visit with the Traaseths and Smiths. What a peaceful loving home...we always just sort of float when we're there. Time flies and hours will have passed when it seems like minutes. It was a great way to divert our attention as we get all riled up and excited for....DISNEY WORLD!!!!! We leave tomorrow and are beside ourselves with joy. Happy mouse pictures will surely be soon to follow.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Kick Starting the New Year

Our friends from out of town cancelled their plans to visit us for New Years because they had the stomach flu...yuck...with a capital Y! We settled in to a wonderful family New Year's Eve...we watched a movie, had some champagne, and were going to watch the ball drop. You know what they say about the best laid plans???? I fell asleep on the sofa around 10:00, which is very unusual for me. I begged forgiveness and hobbled into bed. I awoke sometime around midnight with the worst stomach ache ever. After suffering for about 20 minutes, I began vomiting. I threw up for nearly 7 hours!!!! Did I mention how much I hate to throw up, and how I very rarely do? Eee gads. I was finally through around 7:00am. I thought I would be feeling a bit better to have it over and done with, when the 102 degree fever hit, and then hung around for 24 hours. Man, I was totally out of commission. I've decided that this was a literal take on the idea of purging out the old toxins I was holding onto from 2008 to make way for a cleansing new 2009. I think I like the figurative purging better.
I am on my feet again, the fever is long gone, but I am still treading very lightly with what I eat. Did I mention I hate to throw up????? Yuck. With a capital Y.