Thursday, July 5, 2018

Fourth of July 2018

I know, I've been horrible at posting.  I've let 6 months pass by this year without doing so, which is going to make this year's journal book a heckuva lot harder come the end of the year.  BUT I'll try to do some catching up and will start where we are and then backdate.

Yesterday was Independence Day!  Every year we have breakfast at Village Inn with Jack's mom and sister (and now stepfather).  It happened to fall on free pie day so strawberry rhubarb for me, please.

Jack's Aunt and Uncle own a cabin up by Strawberry reservoir and there has been a fire raging  up there for a few days now.  Jack went up to help clear trees as an added measure to hopefully thwart any burning that could happen as the fire gets closer and closer.  Their family had already cleared out all of their personal items out of the cabin and right after he and his uncle and cousins left yesterday there was a mandatory evacuation called.  We've been praying that their cabin will avoid the fire somehow.  It was only a mile away yesterday.

Jack's brother usually had a big BBQ party at his house on the fourth, so after resting I took the chickies over there and Jack met us there when he finished (and showered).  Everyone brought their own meat and then some sides to share.  I brought a creamy red, white, and blue, fruit salad.  The food was amazing and all of the adults sat around and chatted while the kids played on a water bounce house, in the hot tub, and on their playground.  At dusk the men shot off parachutes for the kids to chase down the golf course green on the other side of the backyard fence, and then at dark they set off the big guns while everyone watched.  At home our girls collapsed in bed with ratty, tangled hair from swimming, and happy hearts. What a wonderful day to celebrate the freedoms that I am more and more grateful for every year, and especially those who secured them for us and continue to do so.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Disneyland Without the Kids!

Jack and I booked a trip to Disneyland without our kids! (GASP!)...we missed them like crazy, but oohhhhh man, was it a blast!  We did all of the adult rides, ate the food we wanted, and got everywhere so fast!  My awesome mom watched our kids and we flew out early Thursday morning, had a bit of a frustrating situation with the worst shuttle ever (never book Karmel), but checked into the Grand Californian at a decent time and got right into the park!  Both Disneyland and California Adventure (well, Radiator Springs at least) were fully decked out for Halloween and we spent all day Thursday, Friday, and most of the day Sunday in the two parks.  It was amazing.  We went on the brand new Guardians of the Galaxy ride six times, the Haunted Mansion- which was Nightmare Before Christmas themed, Indiana Jones, Pirates, Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Railroad, the Matterhorn, Space Mountain, Grizzly River Run, California Screamin', Radiator Springs Racers, Toy Story Mania, etc.  So a few rides that our kids like, but mostly things they are either too short or too scared to go on.  Also, both parks have a new app where you can get all of your fast passes on your phone, so we barely waited in any lines and could just book our times from anywhere in the park!  We ate like kings.  We shared a meal at every place so we'd have room to eat every three hours and it was the best food trip ever.  Patty melts and cherry coke floats at Carnation, fried chicken and pot roast at Plaza Inn, spicy beef skewers at Banyan BBQ, a million Nobb Hill Chill shakes at Ghirardelli, lobster nachos at Cove Bar, an intimate and amazing steak dinner at Blue Bayou, Monte Cristo sandwiches at Cafe Orleans, plus so many Sprinkles cupcakes in Downtown Disney and some Earl of Sandwich.  We were pretty fat and happy.  It was just so fun to go at our pace and not our kids', talk to each other nonstop without being interrupted, and to be honest we talked a lot about them and what they would love there.  Saturday we went to Universal Studios in LA and I finally got to check out Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  The Forbidden Journey ride was waaaay better than the dinky Hippogriff ride, but the shops were cool and just the whole atmosphere of Hogsmeade.  We went on every other ride in the park as well (besides Walking Dead, because I hate haunted houses and this was a walk-through attraction with real people in) and went on a killer studio lot tour to see where so many things were shot.  Two movies that I seem to love a lot more than most people are The Mummy and Waterworld.  WELL, Universal had a Mummy ride and an awesome Waterworld show.  So I was stoked.  Also, we ate at Daryl's favorite restaurant of all time for lunch that day in City Walk, Bubba Gump's, and my favorite restaurant for dinner on our way home, BJ's Brewhouse.  So pretty much a banner day also.  The weather was perfect the whole time, low 70's and overcast but with not a drop of rain. Really though the trip was so perfect and we were so sad to see it end - but so happy to be flying back to our kids...alone on a plane with snacks we didn't have to share, no whining or crying, and watching our own movies.

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