Friday, February 27, 2015

Orlando Adventures

Ryan has a goal to go to at least one BYU game a year. This year, he was an overachiever and went to not one, but TWO. He used his birthday money to buy the tickets--Happy Birthday to him!

Ryan convinced me that we should go to the Orlando game by bribing me with Harry Potter World and Disney World. How could a girl say no? Plus, this would be Ryan's early graduation present to ourselves.

I am so glad we went. We made a lot of good memories and had a great time!

Airport: The Orlando airport is really quite fun. They have Mickey Mouse character statues and pictures of Harry Potter all over. They even had a fun Harry Potter store where they sell t-shirts and wands.

Jackson was instantly amazed at this Goofy that was there.

He then promptly fell asleep afterwards in his stroller while we were getting our rental car. Orlando has about a billion tolls. All the major freeways take credit card, but we passed a smaller toll that only took cash. Unfortunately, we were like 3 pennies short. Ryan had to go to the car behind us and beg for money. Whoopsies. I am going to go ahead and assume that this was not the first time that's happened...

BYU Game: So we drove to the BYU game...UCF is one of the largest campuses in the United States, and unfortunately, we parked on the wrong side of campus. We had asked one of the parking people where to park, and she was like, this is probably the best spot you can get, so we believed her. We probably shouldn't have especially since we were her enemy (not cheering for UCF). We had to walk 40 minutes to get to the stadium (and we weren't allowed to bring the stroller, so poor Ryan had to carry Jackson the entire way). Some of the UCF students were kind of taunting us and saying mean things about BYU. After a little bit, Jackson turned to us and said, "People nice!" I guess he's not used to strangers "talking" to us. It was funny.

We eventually found our seats, and started to lose really bad. We thought it was going to be a blow out for sure. Somehow we caught up, and it was a really exciting game.

Jackson liked it for a little bit (although he thought it was pretty loud and would cover his ears!).

Then in the fourth quarter, all he wanted to do was to walk along the top of the stadium. We would walk until the end of the BYU section and then turn around.

The game went into overtime because of a tie. It was really late, and we had woken up early. Jackson kept asking to go to bed, poor kid. So Ryan stayed in our seats, and I walked down with Jackson where it was quieter and tried to see if he would fall asleep. (He didn't.) BYU ended up losing, but at least it wasn't a blow out. It was fun (and humid!).

When we got back to our hotel, Jackson fell asleep pretty fast, but then this loud noise went off that sounded like a doorbell at 2 am. We called the front desk, and they kept asking if it was the fire alarm. I said no....The receptionist was skeptical and almost sent someone up, but I said, "It sounded like a doorbell." That's when the light bulb went off. "Oh yeah!" he exclaimed. "We just installed those! Probably someone is going around doorbell ditching. I'll send security up to make sure they stop." Why they need a doorbell for a one room hotel room...I'm not sure...

Universal: Universal was amazing. It was super hot the day we went. We got discount park hopper passes from a friend of a friend, so we were able to see both parks.

We mainly went for the Harry Potter World, so we walked straight there. It was in the very far corner of the park. On the way there, we passed Simpson land and decided to try out a ride. Jackson wanted to go on it until it was our turn, then he started to freak out. I made him go, and when it started, he had so much fun....and that is where his love for rides started.

Harry Potter World was amazing! I loved it so much!

Jackson was actually terrified of that dragon on top of the roof. It would randomly open it's mouth and fire would come out. He hated walking on the main streets of Diagon Alley and would beg to hide in a building somewhere.
The frozen butterbeer was delicious and the Leaky Cauldron was yummy.

Jackson ate like a ravished animal--he was so hungry, the poor boy. Ryan and I took turns going on one of the rides. Ryan said it was the funnest ride he's ever been on. It stopped midride for me, and I got to stare into a dementor's face for about 5 minutes. The lady next to me didn't speak English, but it sounded like she was praying. Poor lady.

The Hogwarts Express was pretty cool. Jackson was happy to be on a "choo choo". I guess when Universal made the train, they thought it was just going to be a way of transportation from one park to the other and were really surprised that guests viewed it as a ride. They had to do some quick thinking on how they could make it more ride-ish. I thought it was fun. I would say it was more of an experience than a ride.

After Harry Potter World, we went to Seuss Landing. Jackson really liked it, and we got to go on a lot of kiddie rides with him.

When we were done with Universal, we went to our Disney World hotel, and Jackson was in love. He cooed over the Mickey Mouse soap and bedspread and phone....

Disney: To this day, Jackson will not stop talking about Disney World. He asks to go back on a daily basis. He knows that we can't because it is "too much moneys", but requests that we "get more pennies." He now asks us if we can go for his birthday (doubtful). He also still watches our free Disney planning DVD we got.

When we entered the park, we arrived right on time for this Mickey and friends performance. Minnie came out first and then the others came behind her. Jackson was so amazed his friends were real. I would be lying if I said I didn't tear up a little. It really was quite magical. During the performance, Donald was grumpy, so Minnie gave him a kiss on the cheek. Jackson talked about that for days.

Jackson loved all the rides and was really good at waiting in line. He loved the Mickey Mouse characters, but only from afar. He freaked out if they tried to touch him, or they got to close. He loved Minnie though. He said she was nice.

One of the days we went to a character eat and greet, and poor Jackson didn't know whether to be really happy or scared. He refused to eat his food and wanted to go hunt down the characters, but he couldn't get too close!

He eventually figured out that he could take pictures of them with our camera. They would pose for him, and they wouldn't get too close that way.

Jackson's favorite rides were It's a Small World (which we got stuck on for a little bit) and the Winnie the Pooh ride. He loved them so much that he would watch Youtube videos of them when we got home. Jackson also got this newfound obsession with Winnie the Pooh (which is why he had a Pooh birthday party). Jackson was afraid of the fireworks (but right now as I write this, he says that he likes fireworks and that he's not scared of them anymore.), but he loved the light parade. We also made sure he got some good naps in (which I think is key to going to Disney with kids).

He wore this Goofy hat pretty much the entire time.

Jackson loved the atmosphere and the characters. He really loved the rides. He kept asking to go on some rides that he was too short for, and we would have to tell him that it was scary because there were fireworks on them! Heh. Parents. He actually is pretty tall for his age and could go on a lot of rides that most kids his age wouldn't be able to go on. Lucky guy.

We were pretty exhausted when we went to the airport to fly home. Jackson kept look at his Mickey Mouse books and all the pictures on the phone.

Some people were skeptical of us going to Disney with an almost 3 year old, but we are so glad we went. Even though he won't always remember it, we will! Someday we'll have to go back. Too bad it costs an arm and a leg!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Last 3 Months

Well, time to dust of this 'ol blog here. It's intimidating writing again after a 3 month hiatus. Here is what happened in a nutshell.

October: We went to the BYU vs UCF football game in Orlando! It was a blast. Ryan really wanted to go and made an agreement with me that we could go to Harry Potter World and Disneyworld too. Of course I said yes! Ryan loved the football game (even though we lost), I loved Harry Potter World, and Jackson loved much in fact that he asks on a daily basis to go back, and I kinda want to indulge him. Oh, if only I had a few thousand dollars lying around....Halloween was pretty chill. We stayed in and carved pumpkins and made pizza. I also happened to lock the keys in the car earlier that day, so we had to go pick it up. We almost got hit by a wrong way driver on the freeway, and then on the way home it rained so hard I could hardly see. It was pretty much torture. But as you can see, we are alive and well. Oh, and we found out we were pregnant on Halloween!

November: We took a road trip to Nowheresville, TN, I mean Murfreesboro, TN to go to the Middle Tennessee vs BYU football game. We won this time! GO TEAM. We saw a lot of Georgia friends there, and it was freezing. During that trip, I had to go to the ER--my first time as a patient there. Wahoo. On the way back, we made a pitstop at the Chattanooga aquarium (or as Jackson likes to call it, the "water zoo"). Jackson turned 3! He had a Winnie the Pooh birthday party. He is getting so big and sweet. Love that little boy! Thanksgiving I was sick as I was well into my first trimester. My mom was very gracious, and made Thanksgiving dinner pretty much by herself.

December: Ryan studied a ton this month, and I mean a ton. I was sick, and our house was dirty, and Jackson spent a lot of time on the computer and Kindle. Whoops. Then 3 of my siblings came for Christmas, and it was a party and a half at my parents house. 21 people under one roof! It was eventful. 3 urgent care visits, 2 ER visits, and 1 visit from the fire department (turns out my parents heater was bad, so we lived for a couple weeks with space heaters. Brrr). Jackson had a blast playing with cousins. Ryan and I got really sick on Christmas Eve (c'mon! I was sick on Christmas last year! There should be a rule about not getting sick 2 Christmas' in a row). We played a lot, and Ryan applied for a bunch of jobs.

January: Much to Jackson's dismay, all of his cousins left. Ryan started his last semester of law school, and I feel like a human again. I just got released from YW's, and am now the primary pianist. I'm actually pretty happy about this! I was starting to get worn out from YW's and with primary, I don't have to do much preparation. *Phew*. Unfortunately, Jackson is not a fan of Sunbeams. He misses his toys. He also started preschool back up and as of right now, there are 2 other little girls, so instead of 5 kids like last semester, we are down to 3. Jackson prefers the smaller group.

Well, that's what we've been up to. I really want to blog more in depth about a couple of things, so I have made myself a checklist, and will hopefully get around to blogging more. I'm sure you are all dying to know:

A little more about our Orlando trip
A little about 3 year old Jackson
A little about the baby growing in my belly
and what I think about the newest Hunger Games Movie. (Just kidding. But I did love it)

Until then, hope you have a great day, week, and month! (Depending on when I write again...)