Hello my dear Friends and Happy Friday to you!!
I know that my posting has been sporadic this past week - and it's because we were actually on vacation the past 7 days! We were out in California visiting a dear Friend of mine and having fun at Disneyland and several other places. Those of you that follow me on Instagram probably already figured that out, though. ;)
So today I'm catching back up on life (& LOTS of laundry). I hope to catch up with you dear friends over this weekend and get back to normal posting next week. But I thought I'd jump in and share my 5 for Friday, while sharing some of our vacation with you at the same time. I'm sorry the quality of the photos isn't great. They were all quick ones with my smart phone. I had taken lots of special photos last trip out there (3 years ago) as then it was the first time Annie had ever been to Disneyland. So was less concerned about photos this time and lived in the moment a lot more - which was awesome actually. So here are 5 favorites about our trip:
The wonderful warm weather and some fun events. We went to the beach and had so much fun in the waves, collected seashells, buried Annie in the sand (hee hee) and just relaxed and let ourselves be hypnotized by the sound of the waves. The ocean = therapy. And one of my favorite memories was after we brushed the sand off of us a bit, we put on some dry stuff and said good-bye to the beach we just drove along the coast and looked at beautiful homes and boats. We then pulled off at a little mom and pop pizza place and had some of the best pizza I've ever had...yep that was one fun day. We also went to an LA Galaxy soccer game, and my Crew went to an Anaheim Ducks game one night (I was busy having Mexican food and margaritas and catching up with my Bestie). ;)
Annie got a henna tattoo at the California Adventure park.
And of course...DISNEYLAND! 2 of the days we were there we bounced back and forth between Disneyland and Califonia Adventure Park (it's connected with Disney and it's the theme park next door and we had park hopper passes). It was so much fun going on tons of rides and I especially loved all of their Fall decorations! We actually hit a pretty big hot spell out there (90's to 100 degrees most days we were there). But at least it's the nice more dry heat. One of the days it was especially hot and it kept the number of Disneyland visitors down so much we went on some of our favorite rides 2 or 3 times in a row! Most of the rides either have shade over the line or they're inside in air conditioning so it didn't bother us at all. We just kept hydrating during the day! It was awesome!! We're also blessed as my Bestie (we grew up together - more on her a bit) has worked for Disney for about 20 years and gets us into the parks for free!! Nice having friends in high places. ;)
Hagrid's hut - only saw this if you went on the Flying Hippogriff roller coaster. That ride was a lot of fun!
The singing frogs show was awesome! Just like in the movie.
Ollivander's wand shop. So cool!
The snow actually glistened on the buildings. We mailed some postcards from this Owl Post.
The photos in the main Harry Potter ride (boy it was a wild one!) actually talked just like in the movies too.
My Bestie and I did a frozen Butterbeer cheers! It was SO yummy! Think cream soda meets butterscotch. Whatever is in that foam on the top is SO good- almost magical!! ;)
We ate at the Hogshead pub and I had really yummy fish and chips and we all shared some sticky toffee pudding. MMmmmm!!
A total highlight for me was going to Hollywood's Universal Studios as just this year the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened up there. I'm a Harry Potter nut from way back. I've read all of the books through the years, and I've seen all of the movies. The attention to detail was incredible! From how the buildings looked and were inside - to the food, the marauders map on display and showing where certain folks were, to the Sirious Black poster actually moving and newspapers too, to the Magical Creatures book that Hagrid picked out being locked up in a cage but would try to attack at times, to the Owl Post where we actually mailed postcards stamped with the Hogsmead mailing address, to Annie's wand actually being able to cast spells in shop windows. It was a dream come true for this Muggle! ;) Not sure this video link worked, but if it did take a listen to some singing frogs. If it didn't you can find a video on my instagram - look on the side bar.
Annie with my BFF's daughter.
One of the best parts of vacation is always the family fun and bonding. The laughs we share and the memories we make in all of those fun little moments. And of course visiting with my dear Friend and her family. We grew up across the street from each other and I think I've known her since we were 2 years old. She's always been more like a sister than a Friend and my kiddos even call her "Auntie" and same with her kiddos to me. She was my maid of honor and I was her matron of honor. Alas, she found her happiness (hubby, had kids and dream job) out in California. But we see each other as often as we can and make it count when we do and we do phone calls and communicate through social media of course. It was so nice as each night we'd go get cleaned up and changed and then go out for a nice dinner and listen to live music in Dowtown Disney. The nights felt heavenly and bonus - NO MOSQUITOS!! Lol