Well to say in the least this will be a longer blog- or at least one with a lot of pictures. Which I'm sad to say I used to take more of in general, now about 99 percent of the pictures of Emma- which I'm glad to say I have, but I wish I took more of other things, 'cause my family went on a really fun vacation, but I scarcely have any pictures to show for it. But, here are some of the ones I do have.
Gosh, my family sure has changed a lot since our last professional picture. I think that must've been at my wedding. Curt is now almost as tall as Chris- the girls are all about as tall as me. Oh yeah . . . and of course we have EMMA!
This is something we've done in my family. I have a picture of my dad doing this with Madelynne and Carter. We tried to get James to do it, but those pictures didn't turn out as well. And of course our precious Emma.
Since we were leaving for Florida on Christmas, we celebrated Christmas the day before- and well I don't have any pictures- but Emma got this doll- which she loves. Can you tell?Then our first day we went to Universal Studios- the island of adventure. Mainly for the Harry Potter park.
Here we were waiting in line to get into the ride that goes all through the castle. It wasn't a life size castle, but it was still very large.
As you can probably tell, it was really cold. But, well worth it, we beat the crowds, the Harry Potter section of the park reached it's limits by about 9 in the morning, and there was a two hour wait just to get into that section of the park.
But, I really did think the castle was cool. There were so many awesome things that they can do now. Like they had the paintings moving- but still looking like paintings. The sorting hat spoke and moved. The candlesticks from the ceiling, which weren't real- moved up and down. They had the triwizard cup- as evidenced from Curt trying to snatch it. Dumbledore's pensieve.
I took a lot more pictures than I'm posting so as not to overwhelm those of you who actually take the time to look through this. It was really quite authentic, other than I'm sure the castle is a lot bigger than what we saw. But, they had Hagrid's hut, the whomping willow, and the Weasley's car. They really went all out in designing the castle grounds- which made it all the more fun.
Oh yeah, and how can you forget Hogsmeade? Oh my goodness, that was amazing- all of the shops and stores you read about in the books were there. Some of our favorites were The Three Broomsticks, Zonko's- and the sweet shop. Everyone recommended getting frozen butterbeer, but as you can tell we were definitely not wanting to put anything that was frozen in our mouths. So we just got regular butterbeer. But, it was so good! A bunch of us got wands- which there was a huge line going into Olivander's shop- like a 2 hour long line- so we bought some at a stand. Oh as well as some scarves. Then we all got chocolate frogs, bertie bott's every flavour beans, and some other goodies. I think they really captured the essence of the world of Harry Potter. My family- who aren't big readers of the book, over all the parks said they wished they could spend more time there. Because it really was neat- and felt almost reminiscent- of the memories from the movies. It was so much fun! Oh yeah, and they had pumpkin juice too- we bought some, but it's in our fridge.
We went to all of the parks at Disney World except for Typhoon Lagoon because it was closed for construction. I still think the animal kingdom was our favorite because it had the best rides. Oh and also had the safari- we saw tons of animals and they were so close- elephants, giraffes, zebras, lions, hippos, rhinos-black and white, and took pictures of all of those- but those aren't worth the time it takes to post them :) Here we are on the safari. . .
Then we went to Disney's Hollywood Studios- which we also loved because it had the Rock'n' Rollercoaster and the Hollywood tower of terror, plus lots of shows. We got to see Beauty and the Beast there- it was really good too.
But, Emma's favorite park was by far Blizzard Beach, it warmed up, and we decided to go to the one water park that was open. And she LOVED IT! I think it probably reminded her of a really big bath tub, since she always takes baths with me and the water was pretty warm. Cause she kept splashing around in it. That was a fun park to go to, because no one was really there- so we kept going down slide after slide- with no one to really wait for.