Friday, December 05, 2008

Grateful

Pin It My house is a wreck. As of this morning, I have 162 emails to answer. (If yours is one of them, I'm really sorry.) I worked 14 hours yesterday, trying to get caught up with work that piled up during our vacation. The NieNie project languishes on my laptop, making me feel like a huge jerk (although a few awesome blog friends are going to help me get it finished). I have a birthday party to plan, a skit to write for the church Christmas party, and oh, right, Christmas shopping. Not to mention that whole chick lit manuscript thingie. (Let's not mention it, shall we?)

It's all worth it though, because our vacation was really wonderful.

We spent Thanksgiving in Las Vegas visiting our families. We had Thanksgiving with his family on Thursday, and with my family on Friday - two days of pretty much non-stop eating and laughing. (Actually it was more like six days of non-stop eating. I think I gained ten pounds on the trip, no lie.)

On Saturday we packed up and headed to Los Angeles, and on Sunday we went to the beach and the Santa Monica pier. Even at the end of November it was warm enough to play in the waves.



On Monday, Marste (who works for Disney) met us at Disneyland. She spent an hour-and-a-half (at least) driving through a horrible CA traffic jam in order to meet us at the gate and let us in for free. I still can't believe she was willing to do that for us. I didn't know what to say, how to tell her how much I appreciated it and how touched I was, so I just kept compulsively hugging her, which I hope she didn't think was odd, since we were basically strangers. (But not anymore.)

We had the best time at Disneyland. The minute we got through the gates we hopped on the train and headed over to the Princess pavilion to let the kids dance with the Princesses (that's Sarah right there in front, practicing her curtsy for Cinderella).



We rode every ride imaginable. I highly recommend going on the Monday right after Thanksgiving. We've done it twice now, and both times there were almost no lines. We walked on to almost every ride.

In the early afternoon, we were all sitting near a candy shop on Main Street getting a sugar fix when Alice in Wonderland appeared, ready for a game of musical chairs.



A crowd gathered, and all of the kids who were playing were suddenly the stars of their very own show. Each time someone lost their chair, Alice made them get up on stage and tell a joke to the crowd. Luckily, Sarah and Abby have scores of knock knock jokes memorized, so they nailed it, the little hams.


I have to say - this gal wasn't just playing Alice, she WAS Alice. I think we are all a little bit convinced now that Alice does exist, and she lives at Disneyland. Which is just as it should be.



That night we watched the Christmas parade. I'm not big on parades - but parades you watch with your kids, that feature Santa, Mickey and the Princesses? Pretty awesome. We got to the parade route late, my fault - I kept insisting that we had time to go on one more ride, and my husband kept insisting we needed to find a spot or we'd end up watching the back of everyone's head instead of the parade. He was right. We ended up standing behind a bunch of extraordinarily tall senior citizens.

Luckily, one of the women noticed my daughters (my son was on his dad's shoulders), and asked if they wanted to stand in front of her, right on the curb. Thank goodness for grandparents. (Although honestly, I think she enjoyed watching my girls enjoy the parade as much as she enjoyed the actual parade. They were so excited.)



The whole day was magic, from the minute we stepped through the gate until the fireworks at the end. It's good to be home, but it was very good to go. I'm so glad we did.

video

39 comments:

  1. Oh, I am so jealous! That looked fabulous. And do you know that Alice looks just like one of my oldest and bestest friends that I lost touch with,Kelly Dawn Guthrie Humphreys Landon, except, realistically, the best I could hope for is that it's her daughter, whom I'm sure she named "Alice in Wonderland". Oh and ever so timidly, I don't want you to have a breakdown or anything, but are your helpers going to have the e book ready in time for us to buy Christmas presents? Either way is cool, I'm just wondering. And I'll help ya any way I can. Which is probably just to shut up. Happy catching up.

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  2. Oh, YAY!!! What fantastic pictures, and I'm so glad you guys had fun!!! :D (The hugging was NOT weird, btw. I kept thinking, "I hope she doesn't feel like she HAS to hug me," but I was so excited that I thought *I* was the one doing the hugging and hoping you weren't feeling weird about it! LOL

    *jumps up and down like a four-year-old* Thank you SO MUCH for posting photos! That was awesome! Totally worth a traffic jam (I just felt bad I wasn't there right on time!) :D

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  3. Shellie - We're working on getting it ready for pre-orders, and I really hope we'll have it up in a week or so. I've just been a big loser about it. Thank goodness for blog friends riding to the rescue.

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  4. Oh this makes me so excited because I will be in Santa Monica in less than 2 weeks!!! Yay for being able to get your feet wet!

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  5. Oh yay for you guys! Looks like so much fun! I love the video at the end! I'm so glad you had a good time, it was definitely needed!

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  6. Glad you had a good time, but a little irritated that you plagiarized my title, "Grateful" from my post on November 29th. Can you say "hypocrite?"




    totally kidding. ;)

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  7. It's still really fun to take my nine-year-old to Disneyland, but I can't wait until the baby is just a couple of years older and I get to see Disneyland blow his mind!

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  8. I am so glad you guys got to do that. It looked like so much fun. It is always hard getting back into the routine after a vacation. Hang in there.

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  9. Anonymous2:17 PM

    UPDATE MSHR OR YOUR BLOG GETS IT

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  10. Luckily for you family, you didn't inherit your maternal grandfather's We-Don't-NEED-to-Go-There gene. Having fun, seeing interesting things and taking a break from routine were not on his list of needs.

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  11. Wow. That sounds like an AMAZING Thanksgiving vacation. Just perfect. Laughing, eating, Disneyland, and the beach! Wow!

    The look on the girls' faces as they stand next to Alice is just priceless. :)

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  12. The next time you go to Disneyland tell Princess Jasmine that she can add as many jinglies, doo-dads, and shinies to it, but it's still a muumuu.

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  13. Sounds like it was a well needed break - and isn't playing in the ocean relaxing?

    Yay! And I'd love to help however I can. Just lmk.

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  14. It looks like you had a great time!
    We went to Disneyland exactly a year ago. It was a perfect time to be there, the lines weren't too long, and I loved all of the Christmas decorations.
    And the weather was much better than it was here.

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  15. Makes me homesick...them's my old stompin' grounds!

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  16. Anonymous just made me laugh out loud.

    I forgot you were on vacation. So glad it was a good one. I'm so glad you'll have help with the book (and I wish I could offer to help, too, but I've just hit an overwhelmed patch in my own life. Christmas shopping can be done on the evening of the 24th, right?)

    I'm as eager (in my own more polite way) for the return of MSHR as Anonymous is, but, hey, it's not like fiction always happens in real time, right? I'm sure the wait will be worth it. (But no pressure . . . )

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  17. I am so glad to see your post! Disneyland sounded like the perfect experience. Soooo happy you guys got to go have some fun. The kids look so relaxed and thrilled. And snaps for Marste! What a great woman!! (and DO NOT respond to my email! you have enough to do. you can catch me someday when you are not super busy. I just started laughing because we'll always be busy, huh)

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  18. The one time we took our kids to Disneyland, it was the unhappiest place on earth. But now I know what I was doing wrong! We went on the wrong day, had the wrong friends, and, quite frankly, the wrong kids. Next time I'm takings your! (glad you had a super time--you deserved it!)

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  19. I love that she eats it when the wave comes. Hilarious. And I think you need to learn the art of delagation. Or the art of saying no! ha ha Glad you had a good vacation!

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  20. Golly gee whiz--you are busy. Don't call yourself a loser--you have good excuses/reasons for not finishing projects.
    You trip sounds perfect! I hope that post-trip letdown doesn't spoil the glow.

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  21. What an awesome vacation! You of all people truly deserved it! I'm glad y'all had so much fun!

    p.s. Your daughters are simply beautiful !

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  22. Oh how wonderful ;-) Those pics are fabulous!!! What an amazing experience. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    If I can help in anyway with the Nie Nie project, let me know. Although I'm sure you have scores of eager helpers ;-)

    You are truly blessed.

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  23. I wanna go too! I love it when the Disney people really get into their characters.

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  24. Oh my HECK! (ya, I'm from Utah) I'm glad you had fun, blah blah blah. Mostly I'm just glad you're back online to entertain me! Yippee!!

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  25. Hooray for vacations!!! You deserved it! Your kids are darling, btw. Hope things get easier for you.

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  26. Anonymous7:48 PM

    For Sue: A Haiku

    oh super hopeless
    please end our angsty waiting
    with a fluffy post

    yeah, I'm bored.

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  27. You have no idea how ridiculously homesick this makes me. I'm glad you had a good time!

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  28. Love, love, love the Disney vacation! I am so glad you had such a great time with Alice. Our trip last year went from great to super great because of a hilarious run in with Cruella DeVil. I have never enjoyed meeting a character more.

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  29. Hey I'm back. So I was just on that other blog with that girl from Utah who was once a Mormon and got fired for blogging on the job...you know who I'm talking about. Anyway, she has this momversation thing and I want you to be on it. So could you do that for me? Thanks.

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  30. So fun! So jealous. Good for you, you deserve it!

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  31. Your post just gave me a teary smile. I'm so happy you got to have some happy.

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  32. Dropping by through mormonmommyblogs and I'm glad I did! Cute blog, cute fam, and cute pix at the beach - I love the one where she's writing in the sand - timeless!

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  33. We (me and my family) love, Love, LOVE Disneyland this time of year! After Thanksgiving, but before Christmas vacation the park is literally yours for the taking. Do they still make it snow after the fireworks? Truly a magical, restorative place...I can't wait to go...soon, I hope.

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  34. Family is the Number One Thing For Which To Be Thankful. Even when you have TONS on your plate. I'm glad you could take a break and ENJOY them, Sue.

    Do you think your girls could pass on some of those knock-knock jokes to my kids? Because we're full of the nonsensical ones here.

    "Knock-knock."
    "Who's there?"
    "Toothbrush."
    "Toothbrush who?"
    "Toothbrush went around the kitchen with the Legos!"

    Ummm. Okay.

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  35. Add me to the list that forgot you were on vacation and was impatiently tapping my foot for days............
    Sounds like you had a rocking good time, my dd's are totally jealous that your girls got a picture with THE Alice.
    Glad your back:)

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  36. Wow, it sounds like such a completely amazing time!

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  37. That looks like soooooo much fun!!!!!!

    I'm so jealous!

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  38. Oh that just sounds fabulous! I haven't been to Disneyland in far too long. Good luck getting everything done, I'm sure everything will fall into place :)

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  39. Disney World has nothing on Disneyland--except way more stuff. It's like Magic Kingdom times four, minus the pixie dust (because there's something more magical about Disneyland).

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