Sunday, January 4, 2009

Our Second Christmas and...Disneyland!

Our Christmas Vacation 2008 started early with the 4 inches of snow we got during the last week of school. Jack and Beth couldn't wait to suit up and go outside to play in the snow and build a snow man. Christmas celebrations took several days as we spent time with various family members at different times. Christmas Eve was spent at a Candlelight service at church followed by our tradition of Mexican food for dinner with Margaret's Mom. Then the opening of the first packages! Beth was delighted with her new horse-embroidered bathrobe and Jack couldn't wait to wear his new Lightning McQueen p.j.s! (Yes, he's still a Cars fan!)
Christmas morning tradition is to open the BIG presents from Mommy and Daddy. Then we had a big breakfast with stocking stuffers to open. Late morning, the Wofford side of the family arrived with even more gifts! It was quite overwhelming for everyone! But we all had a lot of fun and sure appreciated the thoughtfulness that everyone put into their gifts!
As soon as the house cleared, we rushed to pack our suitcases for our trip to California. We had to take care of some business related to the finalization of the adoption and decided to have a mini-vacation at the same time.
It took us only a day and a half to get all the way to, you guessed it, Disneyland! We spent Saturday p.m. and all day Sunday at the park and had so much fun on the rides (Jack loved Autopia and Beth enjoyed the carousel with the horses) and visiting the characters!

Jack was so excited to see Pooh Bear that he ran to him and gave him a huge hug as soon as it was his turn! Beth enjoyed seeing the princesses and got her picture with Minnie, Jasmine and Belle.
Monday was our day to visit the Thai Consulate. We had blocked out the entire day (just in case), but our business only took about 15 minutes! So we headed down to Station 51 (well, actually its Station 127) of Emergency! fame. It was cool to see the real place that we used to see every week on t.v. as kids! We even drove by Rampart Hospital! Then we headed toward the ocean and ended up at the Santa Monica Pier.
The weather was sunny so we headed for the beach. Beth and Jack were thrilled to get to wade in the surf. We told them just up to the knees, but as soon as Jack lost his balance and ended up soaked, well, that was the end of keeping dry! After a quick return to our motel to change clothes, we headed back to the pier to get some seafood.
Tuesday, we drove through Hollywood, Beverly Hills, down Rodeo Drive and over to Thai Town to have lunch. Yummy! After that we headed West again to Venice where we had plans to meet Margaret's Swedish host family, whom she hadn't seen for 18 years! It was quite the coincidence that they happened to be there at the same time! We had a wonderful dinner together and had a hard time actually saying goodbye. We headed back toward Oregon that evening and drove as far as Fresno before stopping for the night. We made excellent time on Wednesday and even got home in time to celebrate New Years Eve with our friends! Now our little vacation is over and tomorrow is back to school and work. The kids are excited to get back to school and we are glad to get back to a routine! It's funny to see Jack at age 4 and realize that he is the age that Beth was when they first came to us. So much has happened in just one year and so much growth! We hope that 2009 will be even more blessed, not just for us, but for all of you, too!