Family Pictures

June 12th, 2013 Melanie Posted in Family, Hailey, Hunter, Me, Rich, Vacation No Comments »

We took some family pictures while we were at the beach.  I’m convinced that when you see pictures of families on the beach that they can’t really be taken on the beach.  It was so windy, so all of us had hair blowing every which way.  And everyone was either squinting or wearing their sunglasses.  Anyway, I still think we got some good pictures!

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Grandma and Pa with Hunter and Hailey

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All of us

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All of us again

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Me, Rich, Hunter and Hailey… this represents Hunter perfectly ;-)

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Ellie and Matt

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My parents, with Rich photobombing

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The girls

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The guys

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Uncle Mike and Hunter

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Trip to the Beach

June 10th, 2013 Melanie Posted in Family, Hailey, Hunter, Me, Rich, Vacation No Comments »

A couple of months ago my sister in law had this great idea- we (my family, my brother Matt and his wife Ellie, and my brother Mike) would all rent a house near the beach and surprise my parents on their anniversary weekend.  My parents have been trying for years to get everyone to rent a house near the beach, so it would be the perfect surprise.  Since Rich and I live near my parents we kidnapped them and took them away to their surprise.  We told them the weather report and gave them some instructions for what to bring.  They had a couple of ideas of where they thought they might be going, but I don’t think they actually knew.  They seemed surprised- so either they are good actors and we surprised them :-)

We arrived at the house in the evening and got all settled in and had some dinner.  Then we headed out to the beach.

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Hailey at the ocean for the first time.

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Hailey and Rich

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Hunter with Aunt Ellie

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Hailey loved it!

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I love this expression as a wave was coming in.

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Hunter loved it too!

The next morning we got up and got ready and headed back to the beach.

I love these little footprints in the sand:

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Hunter and Pa

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Hailey and Uncle Matt

Hunter enjoying the beach:

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Hailey enjoying the beach:

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Hailey, Rich and Hunter

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Hailey burying Uncle Matt

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Hunter “resting”

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Rich and Ellie worked pretty hard on this sand castle :-)

The next day I didn’t take very many pictures at the beach, but here are some that I did take:

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Mike- “I am smiling.”

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Hunter enjoying the ocean

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Mike tried to take a nap, but woke up and found he had been buried.

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Hailey loved being at the ocean!!

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Disney Vacation 2012- Day 9

October 11th, 2012 Melanie Posted in Disney World, Family, Hailey, Hunter, Me, Rich, Vacation No Comments »

On our last day in the parks we had an early breakfast reservation at the Crystal Palace so we arrived at Magic Kingdom at 8:30am.  I love arriving in the park before it opens and walking down an empty Main St.

Last family picture at Magic Kingdom for 2012

It just doesn’t get any better :-)

I just thought someday I might be interested in what the prices were back in 2012.  The first time we (just me and Rich) ever ate here was on our honeymoon in 2000- I would love to know how much it was then, but sadly that was before I took pictures of everything.

The Crystal Palace

I couldn’t ask for a better view while waiting for our table.

Our first visitor was Pooh.  Hailey gave him a big hug and asked him if he had enough honey to eat.  He shook his head yes and rubbed his belly.

Hunter just loved Pooh and kept laughing at him.

Hailey asked Eeyore if he was having a happy day and he shook his head yes.

We could see Piglet coming to our table and heard the announcement that the characters would be doing the parade soon.  So, when Piglet stopped at our table I could tell he was in a hurry.  He posed for a quick picture.  Hailey jokingly asked him if he knew there was bacon up at the buffet.  He just shook his head yes and gave no other reaction, which was kind of disappointing.

As he was walking away Hailey gave him a hug, but I think it’s obvious he was trying to rush off.

After the parade Hailey got to see Tigger… they did a couple of bounces together but he seemed to be in a hurry too.

I liked the food at breakfast at the Crystal Palace but I was really disappointed in the character interaction.  Other than Pooh it was pretty obvious that the characters were in a hurry.  I feel like if I have to get up at 6am 6 months ahead of time in order to get a reservation then the characters should be able to spend a little more time.  We said last year that we were going to skip the Crystal Palace on our next trip and I wish we would have actually done that.

Hailey posing by the wishing well.

One of our main goals to get done on this day was to meet Merida.  I had heard that her line gets very long through out the day, so we headed there first thing.

Practicing a little archery while waiting to meet Merida.

Hailey and Merida

Hailey asked me to take a picture of the bears, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have.  I’m glad I did, because I have heard that they are no longer there.

I don’t know if it’s because it was still early in the morning or the time of year but we only waited a few minutes to see Merida… and when we left there were only a few others in line.

Rich and Hailey rode on the Tomorrowland Speedway

Next we saw Alice

Rich and Hailey went on the Tea Cups… I can not do that ride.

Next we grabbed some fastpasses to go on Buzz Lightyear and then went to the Laugh Floor.  Unfortunately Hunter was not in the mood for the Laugh Floor, so I had to take him out.  When Rich and Hailey came out of there I took Hailey to see Stitch.

Next we used our fastpasses to go on Buzz.

At this point the park was starting to get a bit busy.  Since it was the day before Labor Day we had expected the crowds to pick up a bit.  We decided to head over to Splash Mountain and get some fastpasses.  On our way there we stopped and got a frozen chocolate banana.  They looked so yummy, but I hated it.  I just ate the chocolate off.

We went on Pirates of the Caribbean while waiting to use our fastpasses for Splash Mountain.  We actually had a 20 minute wait, which was longer than it had been all week.

When we came out of Pirates of the Caribbean, Hailey’s Tinkerbell stroller was gone.  There was another one there in the stroller parking, but it wasn’t hers.  It was much more worn out than hers was.  Since we bought hers right before our trip it was new and this one was definitely not.  I really wish that Disney did not feel like they had to constantly move the strollers around in the stroller parking.  The mix up (I assume it was a mistake) would have never happened if a Cast Member had not been moving the strollers around.  It was our last day at the park and we probably wouldn’t have kept the stroller anyways (it was cheap and she doesn’t need a stroller unless we are at Disney) but it was still annoying.

The view from the top of Splash Mountain.

Rich and Hailey rode Splash, then I rode with her, then Rich rode with her again.  We had our fastpasses we had gotten earlier, plus the ones that Hailey and I had gotten earlier in the week after we had to walk off of Splash Mountain.  We had saved them for our last day knowing the park would be busier that day. Then Rich and Hailey went on Thunder Mountain Railroad.  While they were on there I got more fastpasses for later for Splash Mountain.  While I was standing at the fastpass machine it just started spitting out fastpasses- I got 9 of them.  Woo hoo!

We went to Mickey’s Philharmagic one last time.

We ate at Cosmic Rays… Hailey was still not eating like herself (since being sick back on day 6), but promised if she could have peanut butter and jelly that she would eat it.  It ended up being the wrong kind of jelly (grape instead of strawberry) but she did eat it, just not very happily.

It was almost time to use our fastpasses at Splash Mountain, so we headed back over there.  Since we had 9 fastpasses and couldn’t use them all within the hour window we gave some of them away.  I waited next to the entrance (which had an hour long wait) and gave them to people who were getting into the line.  Hailey and I rode first, then Rich and Hailey and then me and Hailey again.  What a perfect way to end our trip!

While Hailey and I were on Splash Mountain for the last time, Rich saw this guy walk up like he was going to sweep the sidewalks.  Instead he started drawing with his broom.

The finished Mickey that he made.

The finished Donald Duck that he made.

On our way our we decided to stop for a Dole Whip… the line was pretty long but since it was our last chance we waited.  (Hailey had Cheetos, which she actually ate- yay!) While we waited for our Dole Whips, Hailey saw another child playing with a bubble gun and decided she wanted one.  We stopped on our way out of the park to see how much they were and I was pretty surprised when Rich let her get one for $12.  If you know how cheap Rich is, then this probably surprises you too :-0

Goodbye Magic Kingdom

When we got back to our resort we spent the evening relaxing and enjoying the pool.

Hailey’s favorites of the day: Ride- Splash Mountain, Character- Merida

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Disney Vacation 2012- Day 8

September 28th, 2012 Melanie Posted in Disney World, Family, Hailey, Hunter, Me, Rich, Vacation No Comments »

So, we had 2 full park days left and we had to decide what we wanted to do.  My original plans had given us 2 full days in each of the parks except Animal Kingdom, plus our down day.  Since we ended up with 2 down days with Hailey being sick we had to decide which park would not get a full 2nd day- Hollywood Studios, Epcot or Magic Kingdom.  Or, did we finally want to use our Park Hoppers and split a day between parks?  We decided that the only ride we really wanted to go on at Hollywood Studios again was Toy Story Mania and we didn’t want the hassle of park hopping to just do one ride.  So, we all agreed not to do another at Hollywood Studios.

We arrived at Epcot at 9:24 am :-)   We headed right to Soarin’.  Rich grabbed fastpasses, but since it was still early in the day there wasn’t any wait yet.

Rich and Hailey went on Soarin’ and when they got off it was already time to use the fastpasses.  We hadn’t eaten breakfast before arriving at Epcot and we were hungry, so we didn’t want to use them right then.  Rich got new fastpasses for later in the day (I think they were for around 1:30pm).  Since the current wait was up to an hour, Rich gave our fastpasses that needed to be used right then to some other people who were getting ready to get in to the hour long queue.

I never even knew that Sunshine Seasons served breakfast- but they do!  And it was really good- there were several delicious choices.

Hunter took a little nap during breakfast.

Rich’s breakfast and my breakfast. We actually each ate half of both.  They were both very yummy!

Hailey had french toast, although she still didn’t eat much.  She acted like she was feeling fine and seemed to be herself, she still just didn’t want to eat much.

Then we were off to ride Figment… there is never anyone on this ride.  I have never even seen a line for this ride.  Why is that?  Hailey loves it.  So, we walked right on.

Of course Hailey had to run and dance after riding Figment.

My pretty little miss

After we rode Figment we met up with a friend of mine from high school, Jen and her husband Paul and their son Matthew.  We stood outside Figment and talked for a while.  Then our families rode Figment together.  Hailey and Matthew had to sit together, they were too cute!  After that we decided to do a Perry adventure together.  We went off to China to complete our missions.

Hailey got to see Mulan on our way into China to do our Perry adventure.

Hailey, Mulan and Matthew.  I’m not so sure he was all that thrilled about posing with a princess ;-)

Hailey stopped at Kidcot in China.

Working on her mission


Once we completed our missions we talked for a bit more with Jen and Paul while Hailey and Matthew played together for a little while.  Then we headed our separate ways.  I wonder if we’ll wait 17 years before we meet up again :-)

It was time for us to our fastpasses for Soarin’ but we never made it back.  Hailey wanted to do all the Kidcot stops and we have never spent much time in the different countries, so we decided to just skip Soarin’.

First we rode the boat ride in Norway and Hailey visited the Kidcot stop.

We stopped so Hailey and Hunter could make a little music.  It was soooo hot and we were thirsty, so when we saw a place that had root beer floats we decided to stop and get some.  I noticed a little counter, so I told Rich we could go stand there for a few minutes and get our straws and napkins.  Well, Rich went to set his cup down on the counter and look what happened:

If you know Rich you won’t be surprised that he said to me, “I blame you for this.”  I tried not to laugh because he was mad, but I found it pretty entertaining that he could come up with a way to blame me that he spilled his drink.  So I suggested he just go back to the counter and explain what happened and that they would probably just give him a new one.  So, while he was gone I took a picture of the spill and had a nice little laugh :-)   Once he had his new drink and was happy again I asked him how it was possibly my fault… well apparently I caused it to happen because I suggested we stop at that counter to get straws and napkins.  Makes perfect sense.

Next we stopped at Kidcot in Germany.  It was really hot out and we wanted to get out of the heat for a little while, so we let Hailey sit and color Duffy.

Next up we stopped in Italy.

We stopped in America and listened to the Voices of Liberty sing- they were amazing!!  Then we watched the show in the American pavilion.  Hunter and I fell asleep and Hailey was almost asleep when it ended.  It’s not that the show is bad- but it was so hot outside and when we sat down in the AC for a few minutes and held still it was just too hard to stay awake.

Then we stopped in Japan


Then we visited Morocco

Rich took Hailey to France to do the Kidcot stop there while I got in line so she could meet Jasmine and Aladdin.

The view while in line to meet Jasmine and Aladdin

Hailey asked them if they came in on their magic carpet.  It turns out that they did in fact ride their magic carpet but had parked it up on the roof top, where he likes to take a nap.

After that we went to the Kidcot stop in the UK.

Then we were off to Canada.

I love the pretty flowers!

Hailey in Canada

We went to take a quick ride on Figment again before our dinner reservation in France.

The Eiffel tower

We had dinner at Les Chefs de France.  We like to try a new table service restaurant every time we go and this was our new one for this trip.

Hailey meeting Remy.


Hailey was pretty sure she would not be able to eat her cookie for dessert.

My creme brulee was delicious!!  And I was, in fact, able to eat all of my dessert.

Overall we were all very disappointed in Les Chefs de France.  None of us really liked our dinner (I did like my dessert though) and we were really disappointed with Remy.  After he had been to our table Hailey said, “So when do I get to meet Remy?”  And I said, “That was it.”  We had heard how funny it was supposed to be and he only spent a few seconds with us.  It just was different than what we expected and we decided we would never eat there again.

Hailey asked Mary Poppins if she can say “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” backwards.  And guess what!  She can :-)

We had to do one last Piggy Bank adventure

One last ride on Nemo

Then Hailey did the last Kidcot stop that she had left- Mexico.

She got to all of the countries and was proud of herself for finishing.

We went on the Mexico boat ride and then were talking about heading back to the hotel so Hailey would have time to go swimming.  She told us she would rather stay for the fireworks.  So, we decided we would stay.  We had not stayed for fireworks at all this trip (and I actually really liked it that way!) so we figured we should at least see Illuminations.  We had some time, so we went on the Norway boat ride again.  It actually had a 15 minute wait, and that ride never has a wait!  After the boat ride we all stopped to use the bathroom and then found a good spot to watch Illuminations.


Hunter seemed to enjoy the show… he didn’t cry or act scared of the fireworks.  Every time the fireworks went off he would close his eyes, but he didn’t act scared.

After Illuminations we headed to our bus stop with the masses of people.  It really wasn’t too bad though.

Hailey asleep while we waited for our bus.

When we were getting on the bus I noticed our spray bottle/ fan mister thing was gone :-(   Someone must have taken it from our stroller while we were on a ride.  That is the first time in all of our trips to Disney that someone has stolen something from us.

Hailey’s favorites of the day- Playing with Matthew, riding Figment, seeing fireworks and meeting Mulan and Jasmine.

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