Friday, July 6, 2007

La Jolla Beach, Day 9

Today was a more relaxing day. We got up & ate breakfast then took the kids down to the beach by the hotel. It was still early & still cool so we didn't plan on getting wet. The kids were as enthralled by the waves as we were. Becca found several pieces of sea glass. I think that made the whole trip a success as far as she was concerned. Of course, while we're wading in the surf, a GIANT wave comes & soaks the kids & I. Oh well, I was planning on washing the clothes before we leave.

We go back to our room & change. Then we drive out to dh's home office. He has to try to exchange his computer for a working one. The kids & I want to meet his assistant and his boss. The building is at the top of this canyon like area. For some reason, I left my camera in the car when we went up there. There were some gorgeous views from up there. We only got to meet Mercedes, dh's contact on the "inside" (dh is a remote examiner. He works from home, the office is in San Diego. Mercedes mails him everything he needs & takes care of anything that needs to be done in office for dh) but his boss was out of the office. At least I can now put a face w/Mercedes name. The only other Mercedes I'd ever heard of was the actress Mercedes Ruehl and I always pictured here when dh spoke of his Mercedes.

Anyway, we left dh's office (w/his new computer) and went to lunch. Then, we loaded up the car & drove down to the beach. Parking is a joke! There is no where to park. You just drive in circles praying that someone will leave. Like the mall at Christmas. Finally, someone left & we got a spot.

This beach was different that the one in LA. The waves hit a little furthter out. You could stand in the shallow water & not be knocked over. Plus the sand was much finer! There were no shells of any sort. And, there was a lot more vegitation. I gotta tell you, seaweed CREEPS ME OUT!!! I hated it touching me. BLUCK!!! But, we had tons o'fun!! Nick litterally ROLLED in the sand. Becca kept wanting to go out further & further to get hit by the waves. It was a perfect day!!

Here is a Suzi eye view of what it's like to get hit by the waves.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

La Jolla, CA (still day 8)

We drove down to San Diego after the Wild Animal Park. Scott had stayed in this hotel before but it had been remodled since then. It was an old hotel and they really tried to make it nice. It was just too small for 4 people! But, since we're only staying for 2 days & 3 nights and most of the days we will be gone. The big, Big, BIG plus is that the hotel is only 1 block from the OCEAN.

After dinner, Scott & I walked down to the beach. Ah, the beach. At dusk (we missed the sunset). Beautiful!!!!!! I could live there. I think I need a summer home in La Jolla! We just sat on a rock & watched the waves. There were little kids swimming in the surf. I don't know how, it was COLD!!!!!! And we were dry. I love this place!!!

On the way home, we walked past an apartment for rent. It was one of 4 in a "house" so it couldn't be that big. Rent was $2900 a month. Sure, I can afford that!!!

San Diego Wild Animal Park, Day 8

We got up on Sunday, ate our breakfast (spilled syrup on yet ANOTHER shirt!) and headed for the Wild Animal Park. This place is AWESOME!! It so much better than a zoo. You do miss some of the animals (no monkeys, no bears, no reptiles) but it's just so cool.

We started out w/the birds. Not my favorite of "animal" but, that's where the park kinda starts. Becca was terrified of the ducks!!! One came towards her & she freaked. She would not get anywhere near them for the rest of the day!!!

They started something new since last year. They have this tram ride called Journey Into Africa. It takes you thru the back part of the park & you can see all the animals in their semi-natural surroundings. Way cool. Becca was so impressed that she saw 2 or the 8 White Rhino's that are in captivity. According to our guide, there might only be 5 or 6 in the wild, if that. They are on the edge of extintion & we got to see the only 2 in the Americas!!

After the tram ride, we headed for lunch. During lunch, a duck came out of the trees & Becca freaked out again. It's just a duck girl, GET OVER IT!!!

After lunch, we hit the Elephant show. It was cool to see the elephants doing things & learning about them. Did you know the female elephant is the leader?? The leader of the group had just recently abdicated to a younger elephant. Was interesting to learn how the torch was passed. Very civilized. Unlike male led groups.

We then headed for the giraffe feeding area. When Scott & I came last year, we thought it was so cool that you could feed the giraffes & looked forward to bringing the kids so they could actually feed them. The kids were not at all interested in getting that close to a giraffe. What's wrong with these kids??? So, we looked at the giraffes & moved on.

Scott wanted to see the cheetahs but, being as it was soooo hot, they were no where to be seen (other than the one we saw on the Africa journey). We were all tired and oh so hot. We headed out & on to the next hotel.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

LegoLand Day 7

We left Anaheim after breakfast today. Everything was packed & we were ready to go as soon as we ate. Since we were only spending one night in the Carsbad area hotel, I had packed only enough clothes for me & the kids for the one night in a small bag. Of course, while at breakfast, I spilled syrup down the front of me. I had put a spare shirt in the outside of my BIG bag & was easily able to grab it. Then, it was off to Legoland.

We arrived early & got a decent parking place. Of course, no one told us there was special parking for Volvos. They got priority parking. How funny was that?? While we are waiting, we notice all these banners for Lego Star Wars. Come to find out, this was Star Wars weekend. Explains all the kids (and adults) dressed in costumes! We also noticed that the majority of the kids were much YOUNGER than ours. Uhoh.

We finally are allowed in and start making the rounds. I'm sure this is a terrific place if you have a 5yo but, it's fairly lame for a 10 & 12yo! Nick would not admit it since he chose this destination but even HE was bored. Later on, we started running into Star Wars charachters wandering around the park & that was fun for him.

After lunch (where I ended up wearing a giant glob of ketchup) we found "Mini Land". This is where they built tiny cityscapes with legos. So WAY COOL!!! Scott, Becca & I decided that this portion of the park was worth what we paid to get in. It was amazing the detail & the number of bricks used!

After we left Legoland, we headed for a new hotel in Carlsbad. It was nice, lots of cool spa like products in the bathroom. Nice comforter too. The only problem was the room was too small and only had one tv. It was only one night, we survived.

Disney Diary, Day 6

For our final day at Disney (and in Anaheim for that matter) we planned for half a day at Disneyland and half a day at the BEACH!!

We started out in the Happiest Place on Earth. We planned on hitting Indiana Jones (Nick's favorite), Pirates of the Caribbean (Becca's Favorite), Splash Mountain (everyone but MY favorite) and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, the only ride we hadn't been on yet.

What we didn't realize is that on Friday, they don't open until 9am. We got there about 8:45. They let everyone in but wouldn't let them past Main Street (where you could shop & spend money) Luckily, we found a seat in the shade & just waited outside Adventureland. While waiting, someone official came by telling everyone that the Pirates Ride was closed down for a bit. Uhoh. Becca was a little disappointed but, she had ridden in 2-3 time already so, she was ok.
When the park opened, we got Fast Passes for Indiana Jones, went to Splash Mountain (no line) and then came back by way of Pirates. It was open & we got right in! We went back to Indiana Jones and IT was closed. What's that about??? They said to come back later & they would honor our Fast Passes. Yea! We rode the Big Thunder Mountain and Nick, who had HATED it 3 years ago now LOVED it!!! We got Fast Passes to do it again. We went back to IJ ride and it was open. Unfortunately, even w/the Fast Passes, we had to wait 30 minutes! Oh well. Got that one done, went back to BTMR & got that done.

Scott, who had the day off went back to the hotel 'cause he was waiting for a phone call from his boss. The kids & I did our final shopping. I NEEDED Christmas ornaments. The last time we were at Disney, I saw the coolest Mickey Shaped ornaments in jewel tones but didn't buy them. Our last day, Becca got sick & we had to leave w/o me getting the ornaments. I was sad for the rest of the year knowing I had not gotten ornaments to commemorate my trip. I tried to get them on eBay and tried to have a friend pick them up for me but she couldn't find them. :( This time, I was going to buy them!! Of course, they didn't have the same ones. I got a set of smaller ones in an old fashioned style. The problem was, how to get them home w/o breaking them. The shop wrapped them in a cool cushioning paper and I determined they would go in my carry-on.

Back to the hotel & lunch. Still no call from Scott's boss so we pack the beach stuff up & head for Newport Beach. there was alot of traffic on the highway & Scott had asked me to drive, in case his boss called. So I finally achieved my goal of driving in CA traffic. Just what I wanted to make my life complete.

The beach was nice. We found a place to park our stuff & headed to the surf. These were some STRONG waves. More than once, I was treated to a nice sand blasting of my thighs & buttocks. We couldn't convince the kids to go deeper into the water where the waves wouldn't have been so strong but, they still had a blast. Becca found shells which made her happy. Nick loved playing in the sand. He wanted us to bury him in it.

I'm from the midwest. We don't have beaches like this "back home". The only time we get waves is the wake from passing boats. Or, in Alton, barges. Yawn. Waves THRILL ME!!! I could sit & watch it for HOURS. So, I give you waves:

I LOVE my new waterproof case & I LOVE that I discovered the "continuous" picture feature on this camera. These pics are sequential of my family getting slammed. The butt up in the air is Nick. He was not as brave as Scott & Becca. The pics that dh took of ME in my swimsuit are NOT available!!!!!!!
After we had all the fun we could manage, we went to shower off. Well, there were only 3 showers & one of them was waist high. There were tons of people waiting & apparently, boogie boards take priority over sand midwesterns. So, we didn't get to shower well. We'd all brought clothes to change into but the bathrooms were GROSS. Scott & Nick changed in the back of the van but neither Becca nor I felt brave enough to try to put on a bra in a tiny enclosed space. So we drove back to the hotel (about 90 minutes in traffic & we had to stop for gas!) and showered & changed. I had sand in places I didn't know I had places!!! There was such a pile of sand on the b/r floor after I took my suit off. And the sand in the shower. Oh MY!!! I hope they didn't have to call a plumber after we checked out!!!

After dinner, it was back to the hotel to start packing for Legoland & Carsbad CA the next day.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Anaheim, Day 5

We only had a 5 day pass to Disney so this was supposed to be a beach day. Scott had to work & he was afraid it would be at work too long. So we decided to have a rest, laundry day. So, dh went to work, the kids & I hung out. After lunch, Nick & I headed to the pool. (Becca, the internet junkie stayed in the room w/her computer) I lugged the big suitcase full of dirty clothes down to guest laundry & washed clothes. Even tho we had NOT been to the beach yet, somehow my load of jeans was full of sand! Had to re-wash them all!

While I waited poolside for the laundry, Nick swam. He made friends at the pool & just had fun. Unfortunately, he wouldn't listen to me & put on sunscreen. He was very pink by the time the laundry was done! Becca came down and took pics with my camera. She took this one of Nick. She also took a series of pics of my ear. But, I'm choosing not to share those with y'all!
This was a very nice, relaxing day. In retrospect, I should have built MORE of these days into the trip!

Disney Diary, Day 4

For our 4th day at Disney, Scott had to work. So the kids & I took off on our own again. We rode a few rides, did some shopping and then went to see the Aladdin show in CA Adventure. It was AMAZING!!!!! The acting was fantastic and the guy who played Genie stole the show. A few too many Sanjia (sp?) jokes but still terrific!!! The only down side was that the kids & I didn't get to sit together. We were "late" in line (meaning we only waited 30 minutes instead of an hour & half) so we were one of the last groups allowed into the orchestra level. By the time we go into the theater, all the chunks of seats were taken. Luckily, I found 3 aisle seats fairly close together. I was able to keep my eyes on the kids the whole time. I HIGHLY recommend this show to anyone who goes do Disney!!!

After the show, we came home for lunch. Like the other days we came w/o Scott, we relaxed & napped in the afternoon. After dinner, we went back to Disney to finish up some rides & to see the Fantasmic show. It was pretty cool but some of it was a little boring. Some of it was down-right SCARY!! The kids loved it! As soon as it was done, we all moved to main street to watch the fireworks. They were really cool. Set to music & dialog from some of the rides. Way cool. We left shortly before they were over but were able to watch while we were walking out of the park. We got to our "bus stop" and some cranky lady yelled at me 'cause we were sitting & not waiting in line. I'd like to say I ignored here but, I was tired & cranky too so I yelled back at her. In front of my kids. I wish I had not done that!! Oh well. Only one more day left in Disneyland.

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About Me

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I live in Southern IL, near StL. I've been married to Scott for 26 years and we have 2 kids: Becca 21 & Nick 19. We have a kitty named Jack. I work as a medical biller. Scott is an auditor & travels about 2 weeks of the month.