Aidan at Beach

Aidan at Beach

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A "Relaxing" Vacation in the West

Well, we're home again.  What a trip!  We had a blast.  We were very busy every day but it was so much fun.  I really think this is a trip Aidan will remember his entire life.

But it really starts before we left. . .two weeks ago!

In the midst of packing and getting the dogs situated in their temporary homes, I was stressing about not know for sure if Aidan had gotten into morning Kindergarten or not.  If he didn't, I was going to be in a bind because of Day Care issues.  I did not want to switch at this point.  Aidan needs stability as much as we can give it to him.  But, I need not have worried or stressed.  The day before we left, we received notification in the mail that he is indeed in the morning Kindergarten class.  I will take a two hour lunch break on the 25th and taken him to see his room and meet his new teacher.  Beginning on the 29th, I will drop him off at about 7:55 am and he will be there until 11:15 at which time the Winwood bus will pick him up and take him to the Day Care center for lunch and then after school care. . .and our day care expense will go down by $63.00 a week!!!  Woo Hoo!! 

Pfew!  That's all a relief that that's resolved!

So, for our vacation. . .

On July 27th, we got up insanely early and then headed over to Grandma and Grandpas to drop off the car and be picked up by our limo at the beautiful hour of 4:00 am.  Our flight left Dulles at 6:00 am.  Aidan was soooo excited!!!  He doesn't remember his prior plane rides so he was really excited about this.  About a half hour into the flight, or not even, he fell asleep.  He woke up about 1/2 hour before we landed in Denver.  Worked out perfectly!  Our second flight landed uneventfully in Las Vegas. . .Funny though, I think there was some kind of college hockey thing going on because the Duke hockey team was on our flight to Vegas. . .anyways.

We layed low the first day and just kind of tried to get acclimated to a new time zone and just get caught up with my mom.  She's looking good, although she does have some health issues that I'll discuss some other time.  She has gained some weight which is awesome for her.

Our second day at Moms, we decided to go to her pool for a couple of hours and then to head to the strip in the city.  Here are some pictures:



Moms pool has this awesome lazy river that has a tidal action.  It's really cool to just float around in that area.  When the temps or consistantly over 100 degrees, it is a perfect place to just hang out!




The MGM Grand has live lions in a glassed in area.  We were so lucky because it was feeding time when we got there.  Aidan was able to get right up to the glass and one of the lions came up to check him out!  The third picture down was actually taken by another man, from New Zealand, who graciously agreed to email me a copy.  Awesome!

After this we walked to the M&M store and then the Coca Cola store and then down the block to the Harley Davidson store to buy some souviniers.  Hot, but a lot of fun!  I just wish the people hanging out in the streets wouldn't hand children suggestive cards. . .Yes, I agree that Vegas isn't really a place for children, but it was the middle of the afternoon and it wasn't like we were hanging in the casinos. . .but anyways. . .

On Friday, we headed back to Moms pool for a couple of hours and then headed south to Southern California.  What an experience it is to drive through the desert!  We actually drove through the Mojave Desert, over the mountains and then into Death Valley.  The California border is actually only 20 minutes outside of Las Vegas, and the whole drive only took us 3 1/2 hours to get down to Anaheim.  At one point, the car thermometer said the outside temperature was 115 degrees.  We drove into a thunderstorm and when we were at the top of the mountains the temperature had plummeted to 66 degrees.  Crazy!  Back up to 110 degrees when we hit the desert on the other side. . .

The high desert near my mom's house. . .

We had two day passes to Disney and had decided to go on Saturday and Monday and then the Balboa and Newport Beach areas on Sunday and Tuesday.  This was a good decision. . .

Disneyland was really a lot of fun.  Aidan loved the roller coasters, hitting his first one in Mickey's Toon Town.  But, if you ask him right now what his favorite was, he'll tell you it was Splash Mountain, which we did first thing on Monday morning.  I'm here to tell you that he got soaked.  I mean, all the way through his clothes and to his skin soaked!  Poor kid!  He was so not expecting that and he started to cry. . .I felt terrible about it.  But, other than that, I think he still had fun.

My family has a tradition that we take the train around Disney when we first get there and then go off to start in in on the rides.  Something happened and we had to get off in Fantasyland, though.


Aidan waiting to go on Small World.

It's a world of laughter, it's a world of tears, it's a world of hope and a world of fears.  There's so much that we share that it's time we're aware it's a small world afterall!!!  (thought you'd like to join me in the perpetual song going on in my head!!  : ) )

And then it was on to Midkey's Toon Town!!!!!

Goofy has a great car, even though he crashed it into his mailbox!

I think Aidan fell in love with Pluto.

Aidan driving a ship!



The Haunted Mansion. . .Aidan was nervous about this, but he ended up loving it. . .even when a ghost sat on top of him!!!

Having some fun!!

We brought Flat Slapshot to take some pictures. . .more later!!


Back on the train. . .



Enjoying our first Disney ride after the train. . .

And here it is. . .the fist roller coaster Aidan ever went on. . .

And Aidan's reaction to it!!!

Loving on Jessie. . .

And Woody!!!

And here we are at the start of Thunder Mountain, our second roller coaster. . .

And here we are at the end of it. . .hmmm. . .tall and big enough, but really ready??  Probably not. . .

At the entrance to Priates of the Carribean. . .Yo Ho Yo Ho!!  It's a Priates Life for Me!!!

Aidan's reaction to having to stand in line. . .although a friend told me about a free app for my iphone that told us about how long the waits were.  It rocked!!!  It really helped us plan out our days at Disney.

We finally got to the entrance to the ride.

Covering his ears, but toally loving the Priates of the Carribean!!!!


 We had a lot of junk food and boy was it yummy!!!  Popcorn, Cotton Candy, Corn Dogs, Lemonade. . .Yum!!!
Driving the car at Autopia

 The Matterhorn, which was closed for repairs both days. . .a reason to take Aidan back!!!  Not to mention that we didn't even begin to attempt Space Mountain or a couple of other rides. . .
Flat Slapshot!!!



 Being goofy in front of Mickey Mouse. . .

Okay.  Tigger is still Aidan's favorite. . .you can't see that Aidan is hugging him here, because we couldn't get the angle right, but Tigger is wearing Aidan's Kras hat!

The rest are from the parade. . .on day 2 when we had a better curb side seat to see. . . .












Aidan was so into the parade that it reminded me that we now need to replace all of our VHS versions of the Disney movies with DVD versions. . .Santa will likely help some with that!!!

The other two days were at the beach.  Sunday was rainy and chilly so we didn't actually hang at the beach but walked around Balboa and took the Balboa Island Harbor Cruise.  Fun stuff!!
 On the beach at Newport Beach!!

 Loving the boat ride in the harbor. . .

 Sea Lions chillin' out. . .


Pirates Cove. . .also known as the Lagoon in Gilligan's Island. . .




Sea Lion's chillin' on the bouy.


Balboa Pier.
 Newport Pier.
The Pavillion at Balboa.

After all of this excitement, we drove back to my moms for the last couple of days of our trip.  There, we hung out at her pool again and then went to see Red Rock Canyon before heading tot he airport for our trip home.  Red Rock Canyon is beautiful.



Me and Aidan with my mom and my grandfather. . .






What an experience!  I think Aidan will remember this one for the rest of his life. . .

And now, back to our regularly scheduled programming of shopping for school clothes and going to parites at Chuck E. Cheese!!!  It's back to reality for the three of us tomorrow. . .three weeks till school starts!!!

4 comments:

Doug and Shelly said...

Can't wait to take my kids there!

Joy said...

Stacy,
What beautiful pictures! I am so excited that you guys had a great time on your vacation. I love the ones of you and Aiden. Pat is getting really good at taking pictures, Gerard's usually have my head cut off or some weird look on my face.

Wonderful news about getting into the morning program.
Joy

Michelle said...

Looks like you guys had an amazing time!!! Beautiful pictures!!!

sonflowerjax said...

Love the pictures!! You all just were made to be together! It is so clear in all the pictures! :0) And, it made me so happy to see your mom...continued prayers for her health!