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Old 06-10-2009, 11:01 PM   #107
KathyRN137
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Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post

Said 16 year old could NOT be woken up in the am. It was brutal! Brutal brutal brutal. Drums could have been going off...cannons....you name it. By the time we got to DHS, our plan for the day, it was um...11.

I feel for you! My DSS (now 19) was such a heavy sleeper, we nicknamed him "The Log" (as in, "Sleeps like a...)

The photopass pix are great!!

AI looks like fun... but DD13 says she's not interested!! (With rolled eyes.) She's the same way about HSM, too...

Funny how you "couldn't escape it!"

Kathy

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Old 06-10-2009, 11:39 PM   #108
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What a fun birthday! "Small" piece of dessert? I'd gain 10 pounds from that!
LOL!

yeah, it's mile high mud pie, a dessert they always bring out for birthdays at one of our favorite family restaurants (and my dad's favorite too so he picked). Dad and DS each got one so Dad's got split 6 ways with the adults that were there, DS's 4 ways with his little brother and 2 cousins. Those things are monstrous!

The kids got it made, I think he'll get a total of 5 birthday desserts. A cake by my mom at the family party, ice cream for our immediate family dinner at home, the slice of mud pie and then I'm sure he'll have something at his friend party this sat night...not to mention the cookies he took to class!

Jeesh....I was lucky to get ONE cake at his age. Or still!
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Old 06-10-2009, 11:44 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by KathyRN137 View Post
I feel for you! My DSS (now 19) was such a heavy sleeper, we nicknamed him "The Log" (as in, "Sleeps like a...)

The photopass pix are great!!

AI looks like fun... but DD13 says she's not interested!! (With rolled eyes.) She's the same way about HSM, too...

Funny how you "couldn't escape it!"

Kathy
Oh teen sleeping is something else isn't it! DSS actually missed youth group on Sunday (which is one of the few things he is motivated to do) as he stayed up to late, didn't set the alarm, didn't ask to be woken up and so DH let him sleep. DSS was not happy but hopefully it was a lesson. Still, even when he DOES set the alarm...it just goes off and off and off and off...until DH goes in and pokes him!

He's better than he used to be, DSD is horrid on the weekends but the girl works so hard all week between school and sports that if she doesn't have something sports wise in the am, I'm a little more lenient, she's got to catch up sometime.

DSD was fairly ambivalent about AI but loved it once we were there and she isn't that into the actual show....I think it's the tween MO for just about everything. Unless it's related to Twilight

Although she does think the guy from Prince Caspian is kinda cute!
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Old 06-11-2009, 07:41 AM   #110
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Loving your trip report so far...
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:28 AM   #111
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After AI we had time to kill before our RRC FP's were ready and the big boys were not back yet. After yes, another swing by TSM (up to 120 minutes and at this point I suggested we give up until EMH and RUN to the FP stands the minute EMH started) and a consult with the general schedule, I tentatively suggested what "I" wanted to do, never expecting the kids to go for it. Much to my surprise, they were all for it!

And so we were off!

On the way we decided to get another snack. I'd been holding firm on not letting the kids use snack credits for soda's as that just seemed like a huge waste but the fact was...it was hot...we had plenty and...it was vacation!

DHS was SO great with the snack credit labeling. Really all the parks were except for Epcot so it made it nice, I "could" look at my cheat sheet but so many places were well marked that we could peruse as we walked by which was nice.

As we headed over we were entertained by more of the street performers, the infamous floozy, but I didn't take any pictures. We were thirsty!

Tink opted for popcorn over soda, it was one or the other but man...I can't eat popcorn without soemthing to drink so I thought she was crazy and it was warm out but...when you are 12 I guess you don't care if you want popcorn! In retrospect a good thing though as she's "off" the popcorn for the foreseeable future...it doesn't mix well with braces!

So, one bottled water, 1 large sport drink, 1 soda and a popcorn later we were ready to go in to

Beauty and the Beast!


Yep, I'm a huge Belle fan. Not really a princess-y girl per-se, partially from not having girls (Tink was 7 when I met her and was NOT girly at all...a super jock even then) and as a child I was definitely a tomboy, even now I don't really "do" pink, but.... Belle is the bomb. It might be the yellow dress (my favorite color), it might be the brown hair (like mine) or the fact that she's a bookworm but...Belle is the bomb.

I'm not a character clothing kind of person (on adults anyways) in general but I did pick up a Belle shirt while there, at AK on the last day, I hadn't seen it before all week. It says "I'm with Beast".

Scrooge was less than thrilled especially as I wouldn't let him buy the "I'm grumpy because I'm with Dopey" shirt for himself. I had to remind him that
  1. I'm not Dopey
  2. Beast turned out to be a great guy


I hadn't seen the show before, last time the 2 little ones were only 4&5 and Scrooge wasn't remotely interested in seeing it, not to mention the fact that we never seemed to hit it at the right time but it always seemed to fill up anytime we'd gone by so it looked like a "hot" ticket lol. Or at least 4 years ago it had and I wanted to see it.

We got some great seats. Of course, right as we were walking in I get a text from Scrooge saying he and Steven are there. I let him know where we are and get a giant NOT from him. As in he is not interested lol! So we agree to meet at RRC after the show and they go to get a snack themselves.

Not the best pictures in the world, I was watching more than snapping


















Goofy and Wall-E were surprisingly enthralled and spent a lot of time discussing just how the beast turned into the prince, they were quite fascinated by it. I think I get so used to movies and special effects that I forget at times how effective a stage show can be for that aspect.

Tink loved it, but I knew she would. Besides, she knows Belle is the bomb!

It was funny, it had to be at least 3pm by this point, and all we'd done were shows all day, not a single ride. And yet, we were all quite content.

Next...RRC!


Will Tink survive the suspense?


Will she actually get on the ride?

Will I survive the questioning of what to expect before we get on the ride?
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:38 AM   #113
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My goodness what a week! black belts, birthday parties and a new cat! More updates coming soon. We've all been wrapped up in DS10 this week but as we told him last night, his reign as king has come to a close and we will move back into equal share

It's been a lot of fun to see his moment in the sun. According to him, it was

"the best weekend of my whole life!"

I should say so!

Friday night started with DS10's (aka E1 aka Goofy) actual black belt test. The E1 thing has been around for a while, Both of the younger boys names start with E (hence the eandesmom) and E1 adn E2 has long been a joke based off of Thing 1 and Thing 2. But I digress.

A written test followed by a fitness test. He had to do a 5 page essay but that had been due a few days before so that was over. Originally 43 candidates (adults and kids) could have qualified for some level of testing (first degree or higher), they only test 2x a year. By the time testing came it was down to 16 that had done what they needed to, to take the test. Of those 16, 7 were going for first degree national level, the rest already had their black belt and were going for higher levels (1st degree international, 2nd degree, etc. Up to a 4th degree international!).

It was brutal. Of the 7, only 5 passed the written test. They say that if you don't pass the first time, 99.9% give up and don't try again. I truly hope they do try again and prove the odds wrong, it was absolutely heartbreaking. It wasn't helped by how AWFUL one of the parents was when their child didn't pass, stating loudly so everyone could hear how his child will quit and won't be back. Nice example dude. Now I have my 10 year old talking about what a poor sport a dad was. One of the principles of TKD is to never quit, no matter what and to try and try again.


For those that did pass the written, (E1 got 108%!) it was on to the fitness test, a 3 mile run followed by 50 sit ups, leg lifts, back arches and push ups. Ugh! If you make it through that, the next day is the rest of the test. So Saturday dawned bright and early and the remaining 14 candidates completed their test in full uniform, in front of a crowd. 4 random Poomses (the form of tkd, by belt level), mystery board break where the candidate stands in the center of the room, 6 instructors surround them in different positions, different angles with boards while the candidates eyes are closed and then they open them and have to figure out what technique to use to break each board and go quickly around the circle without stopping, sparring and then power break which is breaking through multiple boards at once to get to their new belt.

It was something else! And, if I have to say so myself, he was amazing.
Pictures don't really show much but the videos are so cool! But here he is. He is so excited, tonight will be the first class he gets to wear it to and he can't wait.




Following that (and the RELIEF of it being over) we got ready for E1's friends party. He wanted his own "signature dining" experience for his birthday. He's been dying to eat at the top of the Space Needle. And thanks to the fact that they had a kids menu, we let him pick 2 friends to come and then they had a sleepover. Originally I'd planned it for the 6th and then realized that was insane as he'd be gone all day on the 7th with grandpa at the M's game and the test was coming up in less than a week so it was his last full prep day. Rescheduling the party made all the difference in the prep, I am SO glad I did it. However I forgot to call the restaurant until a couple of weeks after that. When I did I was informed they couldn't fit us! Thankfully if we split into 2 tables they could do it. One of the other kids mom's offered to take DS8 (E2) for the night (he's buddies with E1's friends little brother it works out well). We were able to have booths next to each other, the boys had their own table and DH and I had a lovely evening of our own. I have to admit, it might have been my favorite "kids" party as a result!

It's funny, you do the parties at a bowling alley, a pool, whatever or even at home and by the time you get food, cake, snacks, treat bags or pay any rental fees, it adds up SO fast! This might seem over the top, I don't know, but what I do know is that I didn't spend any more than I would have with all that other stuff for a party at my house with 4 times as many kids and my house wasn't trashed, I didn't have to do any prep work, it was stress free and I had a lovely evening with DH. And E1 had a truly special night with his best friends...much better than the parties with 8-10 kids.

The restaurant spins around and does a full 360 every 47 minutes. We tried to time our reservation to see the sunset. I hadn't been there in decades and the restaurant had been redone. I'd heard the food was better but "just ok". It was actually fabulous, we were so pleasantly surprised! The service was fabulous, they'd asked if we wanted anything special at the table when I made the original ressie and I'd selected a balloon. When I switched dates I didn't bring it up but not only did they have it, they had the kids table preset just for them upon arrival, no "who sits where" and then coming back with the kids menu. They did a great job of checking with me on drink orders being ok, and the suggesting the "lunar orbiter" dessert for the birthday boy. The boys were beautifully behaved (for the most part, there was some french fry stealing and they got a little squirrely at the end but that was post sugar...I mean ice cream and it had been 2 hours at the table by then) and they received several compliments.

Of course, all that, and they ordered cheeseburgers (and a ceasar salad with chicken). LOL! I thought for sure they would all get salmon or steak, which didn't really cost much more but...whatever. Their burgers were HUGE! And gone, in relatively short order.
























With that over we spent yesterday getting E1 his birthday present. An new cat!

I haven't had a chance to take pictures yet but will, he is adorable. Our current cat isn't quite sure so we are keeping them separated for now, we will see how long that lasts!

We've also been trying to figure out a summer vacation (non disney, wah!) and I think I forget (selectively) just how nightmarish this is every summer. Between dual households and K's crazy soccer schedule I'm feeling very discouraged and beaten down. The one week that worked, K was invited to vacation with another family so we were trumped. The other potential week, she is an alternate for the Region IV ODP camp so if anyone gets injured, she goes. Which means we don't know until the day before that camp starts. It's tough. I remember being almost 13 and I'd have rather vacationed with a good friend too (not that it was every a us versus them thing mind you), and we also support her soccer, these are very very good things, she works hard and has earned it. But finding a free, full week, is next to impossible. DSS16 may have a job and I fear our days of family vacations are changing rapidly into something different.

We're trying to do it on the cheap, camping wise but have been getting stymied on many fronts and I've gotten tired of looking. K is going to one of the places we had in mind with her friend, T is going to another with his youth group...so it kind of takes the wind out of my sails. I've been joking that the 4 of us (E's, DH and I) shoudl just go to Hawaii and visit my cousins.
But, even though airfares are amazing, that doesn't exactly count as "cheap" and we are saving for THV next summer and maybe DC in the spring.

So we will see, right now I'm not motivated to plan and have told DH if he want's to plan it, go for it but I'm tired of doing all the homework to have it not work out. We've already missed out on all the main campsites I had in mind.

But on to happier things like new kitty's, and then soon, another update!
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:11 PM   #114
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Wow! I enjoyed your update! The boys looked like they had a blast!!! I have never been in the space needle, but hear it is really cool! looking forward to another installment!
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Old 06-19-2009, 12:21 PM   #115
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Wow! I enjoyed your update! The boys looked like they had a blast!!! I have never been in the space needle, but hear it is really cool! looking forward to another installment!
Thanks! They did have a blast. Unfortunately we didn't really have time to look at all the interactive information on the interior of the observation deck, there is some great stuff there.

Updates this weekend, I've been busy getting the birthday boys present...aka a new cat, acclimated
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:06 AM   #116
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Wow! Congrats to your son on the black belt!

Btw - I'm the same way about princesses and Belle. Princesses I can do without. But, I love Belle. I think it's because she loves to read.

We saw the same Belle perform - she was great.
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Old 06-21-2009, 12:27 PM   #117
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Wow! Congrats to your son on the black belt!

Btw - I'm the same way about princesses and Belle. Princesses I can do without. But, I love Belle. I think it's because she loves to read.

We saw the same Belle perform - she was great.
Belle is the bomb.
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:05 PM   #118
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Now, where was I?

Oh yeah.

RRC or bust!


Beauty and the Beast concluded we headed over to meet the big guys. The entire walk over, the entire time we were in line, Tink badgered me.


"Does it go upside down?"

"What is a barrel roll?"

"Does it go upside down?"

"I'm scared!"


She wanted a play by play, minute by minute, explanation of exactly what to expect on the ride.

I hadn't been on RRC in 4 years and while I remembered it was fast, dark and cool, and the aforementioned barrel roll, I couldn't remember much more than that.

To be fair...the roll DOES go upside down. And we didn't tell her that. Deliberately. She would not have gotten on. Scrooge and I figured that explaining it a more of a side roll, which it is, would go over better. Which it kind of is.

We both completely forgot that there is a second full upside down loop. Completely. I was so grateful the entire trip that neither of the little boys seemed to care that Tink HAD to sit next to me on every ride, they didn't seem to mind being next to each other.

The boys were in the car in front of us


I think her expression on test track is the funniest of the entire trip, but this one is pretty good too! Her hair cracks me up. (just wait till we get to EE!)



Getting off, she admitted she liked it. I confessed that we'd kind of lied about the barrel roll but that we really had forgotten about the 2nd loop. She admitted she wouldn't have gotten on had she known but was glad she did

Huge progress for both Steven and Tink. It was by FAR the most intense roller coaster they'd ever been on, historically they've avoided them like the plague. A turning point, they got the bug and it lasted the rest of the trip. Very cool for the rest of us as we are coaster junkies.

As the big boys has missed all the shows we decided to head over to Indiana Jones. It had been quite a warm day at this point so we did a slight detour by the PTC lounge to grab scrooge and I a beer lol. Question is, would they let us into the theater with them?

Scrooge made a big show of hiding his, which was pretty silly and not necessary, it's an outside show of course (and we'd had beverages and snacks during Beauty) but he was cracking me up like he was trying to do something SO wrong.

Unfortunately, I have zero pictures because....

5 minutes into the show, Wall-E starts in..

I have to go to the bathroom.

I have to go REALLY bad

REALLY bad mom

Dude, just hold it about 20 minutes, we are in the middle of the row of a REALLY packed theater.

Mom, I can't.

NO really, I can't.


He is dancing and wiggling on the bench, grabbing himself, you know how it goes.

ok. here is my less than stellar parenting moment of the trip.

Wall-E is 8. With a bladder of steel. Sure, he will wait until he is dying to say he has to go and then start dancing around but holding it until he can, never a problem.

Trust me. We did a 3500 mile road trip last summer and Wall-E was never the issue in this area.

He's whining at this point. Really loudly. Won't stop. People are looking. So we exit. Not easily. It is very very full, standing room only, middle of the show. People are NOT happy that we are trying to get out. Not fun. As we walk over to the restroom....Wall-E loses it.

Literally.


Not completely but enough to be, uh, noticable in his clothing.

In a million years I didn't see that coming. I'm mad, at him, at me and at the fact that he's got wet shorts and we do not have a change of clothing. Nor am I going to reward him (he had plenty of time to tell us he needed to go, after beauty, after RRC, while I was in the lounge getting the beers for Scrooge and I, etc.) with a new Disney pair. But we had a long evening still to go and no plans to go back to the cabin.

So after he's completely relieved himself, I send him back and forth bringing out wet paper towels, and with a bottle of water and a messy "hand" wash/spot clean in front of the restroom, I sent him back in to hold his shorts under the hand dryer as they are now far wetter than they were. If anyone saw him and thought I was horrible for doing that, I apologize! At 8 he's too big to go into the ladies room and the rest of the gang was still in the theater.

While it felt like it took forever I was still surprised that the gang came out just as we were finishing. Next on our agenda was the AI finale but Wall-E needed to drip dry so Scrooge spent some time perusing the Indy hats, he's been looking for a specific hat for while (no go) and the rest checked out pins.

Next.

The American Idol finale, will Scrooge and Steven like it as much as we did?

PTC, what will the kids think of the "show"? I hadn't warned them....

and EMH at DHS!
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:07 PM   #119
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Happy Fathers Day!!!!!!!!!!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful day! We are off to go watch Scrooge fly, go out to lunch and then see Night at the Museum. I think the kids are happier with his plan then when on Mothers Day, I drug them out to a nursery to look at Japanese Maples.
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Old 06-21-2009, 02:55 PM   #120
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Loving the report so far
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