Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Chloe's 5th Birthday at Disneyland

Five is such a great age. Chloe looked forward to this day with relish and she seemed to savor every moment. It was such a joy to be a part of it.

We started the day by dressing the girls in some cute skirts I made them and we put on Chloe's special Birthday Badge. We went to a Character Breakfast at Goofy's kitchen and Chloe was able visit with Chip, Dale, Aladin and Goofy and some old professor-like character (maybe Geppeto?). They brought Chloe out a birthday cupcake and sang to her. She was too embarrassed to blow out the candle, so Mom assisted.

We spent the day at Disney's California Adventure park and it was crowded, but there were no long lines. People constantly wished Chloe a happy birthday and she just soaked it all in. I had researched the rides ahead of time and studied the ones with height limits. For the moderate rides the height limit was 40" and for the more adventurous rides, the height limit was 42". I thought we would have no problem as I have measured Chloe at home on several occasions and she has been stuck at 40" for a long time.

We approached a very benign ride that looked about as scary as riding in an elevator and the attendant asked to measure Chloe. He measured her over and over and over again and then denied her admittance to the ride because she was 1/4" BELOW the bar. I felt so bad for her because she weighs more than her big sister who is 2" taller and she is braver too.

Later on, I mentioned to Chloe that it would be OK to ease up onto her tippy toes just a tiny bit, until her head hit the bar. We had no more trouble with ride admissions after that! She even went back later and rode the ride she was earlier refused.

That afternoon, we took the girls back to the hotel to rest for a little bit. Later, I dressed them up in the special princess dresses I had brought for just this occasion. Chloe was dressed in pink as Sleeping Beauty and Pearl was dressed in red and gold as Belle. We had dinner reservations at Ariel's Grotto, where several of the Disney princesses come to your table to visit, sign autographs and pose for pictures.

Once the girls were dressed, we had a long walk through Downtown Disney on our way back to the park. I was a little uncomfortable as the girls were garnering so much attention. They were quite the picture in their gowns, tiarras, tights and fancy shoes. So many people smiled and stared and gawked at the two little girls gracefully strolling by the shops and fountains.

Once inside the park, heads continued to turn as we made our way to Ariel's Grotto. We were a bit early, so we rode a ride and came back to be seated for dinner. Ariel greeted us at the entrance and posed for pictures with the girls. Shortly after being seated, Princess Cinderella was introduced and came to our table to visit with the girls. A few moments later, they announced Sleeping Beauty, and then Belle, and then finally Snow White. Chloe and Pearl were totally enjoying every minute. After dinner, they brought out a little cake for Chloe and sang Happy Birthday. This time she blew out the candle all by herself.

We rode a few more rides and then began the long walk back to the hotel room. On the way through Downtown Disney, we stopped in the Disney Store and this time, allowed the girls to pick out a few items that they wanted. People were still turning their heads and staring at the girls. Pete said one women told him our girls were "priviledged". Well, I don't know if that was meant to be a compliment or an insult, but I did do my best to ensure a special birthday experience for my girls. We don't buy big fancy toys and we do watch our pennies. I guess we are all priviledged to share our lives together.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

On the Way to Disneyland

We spent the bulk of the weekend at home, and then on Sunday, we left for Disneyland. We stopped by our friend's house in Los Angeles on the way. Dave, the dad, is a high school classmate of mine. His wife Denise is originally from Taiwan and they have two handsome sons Damian, and Ian. Damian is three months older than Pearl and his birthday is less than a week after Chloe's. He and Pearl seemed to have a fun time playing together.
David and Denise ordered pizza, but this was totally AWESOME pizza. I wish we had a "Numero Uno" pizzaria in our town. After that, we headed to the park where the kids could play and get out a little of their energy. We said our goodbyes after an hour at the park and then we headed the final hour on the road to the Disneyland Hotel, where we checked in and then proceeded to Downtown Disney to enjoy the shops and outdoor atmosphere. It was so much fun and the girls window-shopped. We told them they could make purchases the following evening on Chloe's birthday.

Friday, January 16, 2009


It's finally Friday! Work is going well and my construction project is ahead of schedule. I will be taking off Monday (not a holiday for me) and Tuesday to take the girls to Disney's California Great Aventure Park and Disneyland. Monday is Chloe's 5th birthday and we will be celebrating it in style with the Disney Princesses. I ordered special dresses for the girls and they are soooo excited to wear them. This will be the first time I have ever stayed at one of the Disney hotels, so we will hopefully have an enhanced experience. I hope this is the best time ever for Chloe and Pearl!

We will leave home Sunday morning for the two hour drive to the park, stopping on the way at a friend's house to visit. We will check into the Disneyland Hotel and hopefully find something fun to do that evening before we head to the California Adventure park on Monday. We will have the dinner and birthday celebration with the princesses and then the next morning we will go to Disneyland. Hopefully, on Tuesday, (as Monday is a holiday for many) all the regular folk will head back to work and school. The weather is predicted to be sunny and in the mid-70s. Oh, how I love Southern California!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wacky Wednesday

Today was Wacky Dress-up day at Chloe's preschool. I helped Chloe pick out her clothes the night before, but had to leave too early this morning to help her get dressed. After my morning meetings, I stopped by her classroom to check on how she is doing. She just loves that!

We're Baaaaaack

Meet my new best friend! It has been so frustrating to not have a computer at home. My laptop crashed while I was on vacation in Carmel and we couldn't get it fixed, so we had to buy a new one. My husband spent at least three days combing the city for a good deal and finally came home with this baby. I now feel like my life is back in order, or at least it will be when I re-install all my favorite software programs.

I will be squeezing in a few old posts, so stay tuned.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Celebrating Dad's Birthday One More Time

Pete's neice insisted on taking him out to dinner for his birthday after we returned home from our vacation in Carmel. Pete's best friend Joel also has an early January birthday so we invited him along to share in the celebration. We went to Pete's favorite Italian restaurant and dressed up the girls real nice. Chloe was fixated by her Aunt Jane's magnets. It was a nice time with family and friends.

Friday, January 02, 2009

January 2nd in Carmel

Today is Pete's birthday and it is our last evening in Carmel. We decided to return to the Old Fisherman's Grotto for a fabulous dinner with complimentary appetizers and desert (which we had to decline because we were full and had birthday cake waiting at home). We had a fun time on our last night here and the dinner experience will be memorable for years to come.