Last week, I was gone for camp from Tuesday to Friday. This week, I was gone to California from Tuesday to Friday. The summer is passing very quickly so far.
Jeff had to go to Continuing Education classes in Phoenix, so I decided it would be the perfect time to take the girls on a trip of our own.
First, and most important, Riley got to play with her California cousins:
These are not the right proportions on height. Riley was on her knees. I can't remember why.
Here is a picture with three of her cousins. I didn't get a picture with the baby too. I wish I had! She is such a sweet girl....not a year old yet, but close.
I loved spending a day with my sister. We were spoiled with good meals. We had a fun, and enlightening visit. The only problem is, we miss them more than usual when we have to leave.
After a day there, we were off to Disneyland. The original plan was, to take my sister and the kids with us there. Their Southern California passes are blocked out in July though, so that didn't work out.
We hadn't been to Disneyland in July since Ryan was twelve, so I had forgotten how crazy it could be. We had a little review! It was fun, but I definitely prefer to go when it is less hot and crowded.
Here are the girls on Wednesday afternoon waiting for the shuttle to come to our hotel.
One of the main things we said we were going to do, was watch the fireworks. My girls had never seen the Disney fireworks. We carefully chose our piece of curb an hour and a half before the show. Riley and I played "Rock, Paper, Scissors," and "I'm Thinking of a Person," (kind of a 20 questions thing) more than a few times. When that fun wore off, Kaitie and Emilee went in search of something else to entertain us. You can see what they came back with. It worked....
for all of them.....
A bonus in the summer fireworks this year, is the flying Dumbo. They have been showing this on the Disney channel. Riley is much too familiar with this channel. Anyway, it was exciting for her to see this in person.
We headed straight for Space Mountain after the fireworks. It is definitely still my favorite. I thought Riley held up pretty well, especially after staying up past midnight with her cousins the night before. She is not famous for being cheerful when she is tired.
Riley also rarely sleeps in. Thursday morning, she slept until almost 10:00. I let the girls sleep and that was hard for me! I like getting up early on vacation. I know that is backwards. I can sleep in at home, when I get the chance. On vacation, I like to get going.
Thursday, when we finally got there, we spent a great portion of the day in California Adventure.
Donald always cracks me up when he shows his jealousy of anything Mickeyish.
While we were in line to see Minnie, a Disney employee asked Riley what was wrong. Riley said she was okay, just hot and tired. I explained that we had just been in line for the Rapids, and they had closed the ride while we were waiting. The employee was explaining this to Minnie, while Riley stood by her. The employee offered to dump a bucket of water on the two of them. Riley and Minnie each look a little concerned, don't they? (We never did manage to get back to the Rapids ride, but enjoyed a big splash on Splash Mountain soon after this...)
Riley and I went on a lot of rides together, while Kaitie and Emilee went off and did different things. While they went on the Tower of Terror, Riley and I went on the Toy Story ride. That is a fun ride. It is pretty new, so we had not been on it before. During it, she looked at me and stated, "I want to ride this again. I want to ride this six more times." It was a highlight for both of us. We didn't go on it again though. Next time.
We talked to Jeff a few times during our trip. I felt a little guilty asking, "How are your tax classes?" while we were between rides. I appreciate him so much for his unselfishness. He just wanted his girls to have a great time.
Here is Riley, as we are leaving the hotel.
Friday morning, we were back on the road, headed toward home...with a minor shopping detour. It was really the easiest trip ever. Kaitie was in the front with me, Emilee had the middle seat to herself, and Riley had the back seat to herself. On Tuesday, I played Radio Disney in the car. On Friday, I put it on 70's music. Classic rock is good driving music. (I did have to cringe a little when I realized I was listening to music that Dwight Schrute would probably like! That thought only made me pause for a moment though. Classic rock is like comfort food. You wouldn't want it ALL the time, but it is so amazing sometimes.)
When we stopped for a little shopping, Riley found something she would rather do than shop. She ran in and out of the fountains, never imagining that she would really get soaked... ...until she did....
A week ago, right now, I was putting a few last-minute things into my car. The time had arrived to head to Camp.
I spent Tuesday to Friday (one day shorter than usual) in the mountains above Tucson with some crazy and wonderful girls.
I didn't get as many pictures as usual. One of the things that did not make it into my car was a spare camera battery.
Here are some of the girls getting ready to go on a hike:
Part of our group (white shirts) taking down the flag:
Getting ready for our lip sync:
Aren't they cute cows?
We had a good time. There were the usual ups and downs, but I really love these girls. I appreciate each one and learned from each one.
(Kaitie is not pictured. She doesn't like the pictures I have of her, and so I have agreed not to post them. I regret that agreement!! She was my right hand up there though. I loved having her with me.)