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December 18, 2014

The Christmas Cupcake

Sunday evening the children's choir at our church performed a cute Christmas program. The kids have been working on the songs for several months and added a drama for the program. 

We enjoyed cheering all the kids on during their performance of The Christmas Cupcake. 



Libby, Kaylen and Lilly dancing to "Baking up Cupcakes".




And guess who made a cameo during the play? Yes I did! I was a chef judge that helped decide on the winning cupcake. 

The guest judges were: (L to R) Becky Rocker, Guy Spaghetti and Paula Queen. 


Libby and I enjoyed being on stage celebrating the REAL reason for Christmas...Christ's birth. It's easy to get distracted with all the shopping, elf on the shelf and Christmas parties why we're here. But we know why...Jesus Christ!  

December 15, 2014

'Tis the Season

We are half way through December and we are enjoying Christmas around our house. With Drew and Libby's help, we got our tree up early and with little fanfare. Georgia Kate, however, is keeping me on my toes. She likes the tree and decorations a lot. She loves playing with our (kid-friendly) nativity set. She grabs the angel, runs through the house and shouts, "Tinkerbell!" She has also been caught swiping ornaments off the tree. But she's so cute that she gets away with little discipline. 




Our Elf on the Shelf, Chris, arrived December 1 and both girls are excited to find him each day. Libby is really enjoying him this year, we talk about him a lot. She even writes him letters. "I heard you have been watching me all day long and you are the best and nicest elf...I am going to miss you afterwards you will be gone."  Sweet girl.


GK doesn't really understand what it's all about, but she tells Chris "hi" each morning and likes to see where he's perched each day. 





Libby and Drew ran in the Reindeer Run this weekend. It's a huge, local race (1 mile run) for elementary kids. It's a fundraiser for Children's Miracle Network and it's a big event. Libby's school does a good job promoting the event and it's a fun morning for the kids. 




Right after the race, we walked across the bridge and found a spot for the annual Christmas parade. It was Georgia Kate's first parade and both girls had fun waving to all the people and floats and and eating candy. 

'Tis the Season!

December 06, 2014

Picture Perfect

I had pictures made of Libby and GK last month and I have to share some of my favorites. The photographer is April Sawyer (her site here) and she happens to be Libby's 1st grade teacher. She could pass up teaching and embrace photography full-time. I'm glad she hasn't left education yet, because she's a GREAT teacher! 

Here are some of my favorite shots:











My girls are growing so much and I will never regret having pictures to capture these exact ages and moments in the their lives. 

December 03, 2014

Disney World - Day Five

We woke up Sunday morning knowing it was our last hurrah at Disney World. We packed up and checked out of the hotel. We had one last breakfast and coffee refill and headed to the last park, Epcot Center. We only had a half-day planned because we had to drive home. So our time in Epcot was brief.








We rode Mission Space and Soarin' and explored the park. Next we headed to Norway have brunch with (MORE) princesses at the Akershus Banquet Hall


This breakfast was set up similar to the lunch we had at Cinderella's castle. We met several lovely princesses while we ate breakfast. 

Those meet and greets included Belle, 


Ariel,



Snow White, 



Cinderella,

(check out Libby's smile!)



and Aurora a.k.a.Sleeping Beauty.



Afterwards we found a huge gift shop and picked out gifts to take home. Libby was thrilled to find just the right toys/books/snacks to bring back to Georgia Kate.

After a little more strolling around Epcot we called it a day and told Disney World goodbye...for now. I was so worn out by this point I wasn't sad about leaving. It was time. We had an easy ride home and enjoyed our last few hours of "just Libby" time. 

We were so glad to roll back into Alabama and hug Georgia Kate's neck! We all missed her so much.

Our first family adventure to Walt Disney World was a success. We did most things right and a few things wrong. We feel like we'll know so much more when we return in the future. 

I've created a hard-cover photo book so Libby can look back on our trip and remember the great memories we shared as a family. There are so, so many rides, characters and happy moments I don't want to ever forget.

November 19, 2014

Disney World - Day Four

This was our fourth day at Disney. We knew it would be a busy day since we were going to Magic Kingdom (the biggest park) and it was the weekend. I don't hide the fact that we aren't Disney pros - if anything we were a little hesitant about taking the trip at all. But each day we'd been able to conquer a park, we felt a little more confident.
 

However, we did a lot of laughing and eye rolling at certain aspects of Disney World. We saw some hilarious things and people: women wearing stiletto heels for miles of walking, screaming new born babies, people dragging their elderly family members (some on oxygen tubes) in the heat. Really?! Drew and I quickly agreed that we'd never try anything to further complicate our trip to the crowded parks. Especially in the Orlando heat. That would just be torture for us. Someone else may thrive in that environment. We surely WOULD NOT. 
 
In my first Disney post I mentioned that we left Georgia Kate home with her grandparents. And it was a decision that we high-fived ourselves over and over again. She was not ready, nor were our nerves. Taking Libby at 6-years-old was the right choice for us. She had a ball, she really did! But was capable waiting in line, letting us know when she need a restroom break, she recognized most of the Disney characters and she was tall enough to ride 90% of the rides. We do not regret waiting until she was older. We'll plan a trip for GK when she is old enough to appreciate the experience. 
 
We headed back for a full day at Magic Kingdom. We'd spent our first afternoon/evening here and knew our way around. We started at It's A Small World, Disney's Haunted Mansion, The Hall of Presidents and a newer roller coaster, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. Next we visited Enchanted Tales with Belle. This was an interactive tour with Belle from Beauty and the Beast. The REAL Belle!



Drew was selected to help guard the castle while we were there. He was thrilled. Meanwhile I laughed and took pictures. :)


Next we hit Peter Pan's Flight and The Barnstormer, then got to visit with Daisy Duck and Minnie Mouse. 




We had lunch reservations at Cinderella's Royal Table INSIDE the Cinderella's castle. Pretty cool!
 







Making a wish.

 


We saw a wonderful parade after lunch with many familiar Disney characters.









 
We spent the afternoon in Tomorrowland. We rode Astro Orbiter, Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin, Stitch's Great Escape, Tomorrowland Speedway, Carousel of Progress, People Mover...it was a busy afternoon.
 
We ended the day with one last Fast Pass to ride Thunder Mountain, a roller coaster, one more time. We rode it the first evening in the park and it was one of Libby's favorites. 
 
At the end of this (LONG) day we were feeling the heat and exhaustion of our extremely busy vacation. 



I repeat: a vacation to Disney World is not for wimps!