Monday, December 30, 2013

Rockin' Ever After Show

One of the gifts the kids got from a family member was some money with the request of a picture of how they used their money. We were told to do something as a family and to have fun together - go to the movies, get a new toy, have ice cream, anything! Because we were already planning on going to Disney on Ice, we decided that the kids could each choose a toy {something that we don't normally do.}
Once the show started, we got to see some pretty awesome characters! The basis of the show was that Mickey and Minnie were hosting a talent show. Goofy kept the order of the show on his clipboard and Donald took pictures of everything as it was happening. 
First up was Pinocchio and then the Evil Stepsisters.
Following the stepsisters we got to see the mermaids! Sebastian brought out Ariel's sisters. At the end of their performance, as he was introducing them, they discovered that Ariel was missing. 
Once Ariel came out, the story of The Little Mermaid. Eden had just seen the movie for the first time that morning, so she was excited to see it on the ice.

When Ariel got her legs, it was amazing! I think it might have been one of my favorite parts of the show. 
Beauty and the Beast was also part of the show. 

The Tangled portion was cute. It started with Mickey and Minnie telling the Hooligans from the movie that they couldn't have a talent of being rude. They started with their I Have a Dream song from the movie and then the story continued on.
They even had lanterns that were released - and it was just as beautiful as in the movie!
The final act was Mickey Mouse. Mickey told a story - the story of Merida. 
Once the finale started, the characters were in their nicest dress. Most of them came skating right by us waving goodnight. 

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Rockin' Ever After Event

A few weeks ago the Family Readiness Officer {FRO} with Lane's squadron sent an email telling us that we could go see Disney on Ice for free! Before the show, we were invited to an event with lots of fun activities for the kids. One of the emails we received after RSVPing stated that the event was being put on for "recognizing the bravery and noble spirit shown by our troops, Disney On Ice has created a once in a lifetime event inspired by the character Merida from Disney-Pixar's Brave." It was a blast! We were so happy to take part in such a fun outing with the kids.

Once we got to the suite at the arena where the event was being held the fun got started. They had Highland Dancers there to teach some of the kids some cool moves. Eden enjoyed it for a bit, but was overwhelmed by the moves. She watched with just as much excitement though!
Another one of the activities set up for the kids was shield decorating. There were markers, glitter, and some "gems" set out for the kids to use. Eden and Hunter are loving to color these days, so they were pumped about this activity. Hunter doesn't get to use markers at home, so it was extra special for him!
Lane was most excited to see the golf section of the suite. He got to help Hunter putt and it was quite comical! Of course Hunter was into it - there was a ball involved! We got lucky that he never tried to pick up one of the golf balls to throw it across the room.
I think the most exciting part for Eden was that she got to meet another Disney character. Even though we had spent 2 days at Disneyland, she was getting to meet another character that she never saw at Disney. Merida came to greet all of the families who were in attendance at the special pre-show event. Eden and Merida curtsied to each other, and Hunter kept a safe distance.
The last thing the kids did before the event was over was make a beaded necklace. During this event I helped Hunter make a necklace while one of the ice skaters helped Eden make her necklace. The 2 of them chit chatted about different Disney movies and characters. Eden talked about the different princesses and who she had seen that week. It was really neat for Eden to get to talk to one of the performers. I thought it was cool that they had people there to interact with the kids while we were having fun.
After the event, we headed into the show for some more fun!

Merry Christmas

This year Santa came to our house after 2 full days at Disneyland. Lane and I put out the cookies for Santa since the kids were sleeping when we got home.
When the kids woke up, they discovered that they were in their brand new Christmas pjs and that Santa the Elf was back at the North Pole. I'm pretty sure that Eden is still asking when he's coming back. She's also talking about what she's going to ask for for next Christmas. I hope she realizes soon that it's not going to be a while before Santa makes another visit.
The excitement of heading downstairs was too much to handle. Eden tore downstairs and was running around through all of the gifts. She was telling us to look at this and look at that! She was SO excited about all of it!
 Her big gift was a bike, and she was more than excited to show it off. She was happy to be able to have a seat for Lady on the back of the bike.
Hunter also got a bike. He couldn't get all of the other stuff off of the bike so he could get on it. After he was able to sit on the bike, he leaned off the bike to reach his other toys. The whole time he was exclaiming, "bikkkkkkkkke!" I laugh every time he says "bike" because he over-innunciates the k at the end of the word.
 Once Hunter got off his bike he was happy to dig through his stocking and find candy to munch on. He wanted to open every toy he opened throughout the morning as he was opening the presents. Leaving anything in the package caused an argument with Hunter.
We were able to video chat with both sets of grandparents in Georgia throughout the day. At the end of the day, we all had fun - even the dogs. So much fun, that we didn't get a single family picture! I didn't realize until the kids were already heading up to bed for the night. 

Friday, December 27, 2013

Disney {Day 2}

Day 2 started early again. When we were packing up our things to check out of the hotel, the kids discovered where their elf was {he was in the cup holder of the car with white chocolate covered pretzels shaped like Mickey on Monday so that he didn't miss the trip.} He placed himself safely in the side pocket of the backpack and hung out with us all day on Tuesday.
The one thing that Eden asked for on Day 1 was that she get to see the princesses and we didn't do it. The wait was over an hour long, so we promised her we would get to the park as soon as the park opened so we could see the princesses before breakfast. This was probably that smartest thing we've ever done. There were hardly any people there at the opening time. We saw the princesses and we walked right onto a few of the rides with no wait.

Once again, we had a character breakfast. We saw a lot of characters at this breakfast. Every time we turned around there was someone else there to see us. There was no singing and dancing, but Eden didn't seem to miss it much.

Eden hadn't gotten enough of the characters so we headed off to toon town to visit Minnie's house. Minnie was the first {and only} character that Hunter warmed up to enough to give a hug. He gave a lot of high fives, got excited to see many of the characters, but Minnie was the only one that got a hug - he wouldn't even take pictures with most of them!

We headed over to California Adventures to experience a little bit more of the theme park. Eden wanted to go back to Bug Land, and we wanted to make sure to see the Pixar Parade at the end of the day. Eden loves the Ariel ride and Hunter loves so many of the Toy Story characters, so it was the perfect compromise for the family.

Hunter took a teeny little nap, and while he slept, Lane and I traded opportunities to sit down for a few minutes while the other one took Eden on a few rides. Ahhhh - it felt so good to get a few minutes of just siting down with no one climbing on something, yelling about something, running around, wandering too far. My feet thanked Hunter for sleeping, for sure!
When nap time ended, we grabbed a snack and then headed over to Monsters Inc.
With just a few minutes before the Pixar Parade the Disney Jr. Live on Stage show was starting, so we took time out to enjoy the show. Both kids loved the show and it was a great way to get some down-time before standing to watch the parade.

At the end of the parade we decided to take a family picture with Santa over the end of the street. It reminded me of the movie Prancer. The movie was one of my favorites as a kid and Eden and I watched it together this year. When I saw the Santa, I just couldn't resist!
We left California Adventures to go back to Disneyland for dinner. When we got over there, we discovered that our timing couldn't have been any better. The parade was ending and Santa was rounding the corner! He was so awesome!

Our last stop in Disney was dinner at a cafe on Main Street. While we were at dinner the castle lit up again {we couldn't see it this time} and it snowed again. I had told Eden that it would snow out on the street, but not at our table because we were too far back from the street. When the snow started falling, it did actually come onto the patio and the look on Eden's face was pure joy!