I was fortunate to meet Rex, the Imagineer heading up the Toy Story project. Twice. Last December, Rex gave a presentation to the new WDW Moms Panel on this exciting new attraction. His enthusiasm filled the room with excitement. Next, I was in WDW for a media event in April. After lunch with an Imagineer, our group was met by Rex at the outside of the attraction. There were construction workers everywhere. But still, the excitement was contagious. Rex walked us through part of the queue for Toy Story Mania (TSM) and we got to glimpse the ride vehicles. My heart was racing. We were the first members of the "Press" to be given an inside tour.
Flash forward to June. We have our FastPasses in hand. My mom, husband, son and I finally boarded the attraction. And wow. I giggled like a little girl. TSM offers fun for all ages. My arm ached after pulling the trigger string. And yet, I couldn't wait to ride again! Tip: Single rider line!
You'll be shrunk down to toy size before embarking on this carnival game adventure. It was fun to be part of the show in this immersive experience. Thank you WDW Imagineering!
Oh my, the peace and quiet is ringing in my ears now. This is Nic's 5th night away.
Hubby and I went out for breakfast this morning to the Hershey Pantry. We sat on the "back porch". A lovely screened in area that looks like Grandma's old-fashioned porch. It was a warm and sunny morning. We enjoyed a delicious breakfast. We've also been talking. Whole conversations without being interrupted by kid chatter. Who even knew that we could still finish one coherent thought!
After breakfast, Michael went to work. I did some WDW Moms Panel work and then continued my house projects. A friend stopped by to visit. Her family is leaving for WDW on Friday. And well, she just knows that I'll chat about Disney any time of the day. It's been fun sharing in their vacation planning. I'm glad to watch their home while they are at Mickey's House and most of all, I've enjoyed watching their excitement grow as their vacation gets closer.
This afternoon and evening, all was quiet again.
And so, I may actually finish my Harry Potter book. It's not so bad being Home Alone.
So my hubby came home early today and what did we do?
Some dusting which is always romantic, right? I worked on our son's room. Moved the bed to a new area (requested of course by Nic) and started sorting through toys, toys and more toys. Tossed out his pillows. Put in all his blankets to be washed. Which reminds me that I should take down the curtains and wash those too while Mr. 8 is vacationing at his grandparent's house.
Afterwards, it was finally time to have some fun. Well low-key, "I'm so tired" kind of fun. First, we went to the new casino in Grantville, Pa. It's not more than 20 minutes from our house. We looked around, went though the movie memorabilia area, checked out the restaurant selection and chose to have dinner at the sports bar and grille. The food was excellent. I had a chicken quesadilla.
After, we got our Players Cards because, well, we wanted to pretend that we are play-ahs, people! But we are so not. Okay, we've been to Atlantic City and Vegas but there's not going to be any need for 1-800 -GA any time soon. I love slot machines but I have an ever so hard time feeding my money in to the machine and not getting a pretty new pair of shoes or a beautiful Coach bag back in return.
Anyhow, we did have fun and it was nice to be some where adult-like with clean bathrooms.
Next, we really went wild. You might want to sit down. We went to Target. Oh, ya know, because we wanted to outfit our bathroom with beautiful new linens. Not. We got Nicolas new pillows, a new lamp and a few other things that I haven't taken out of the bag yet.
So we are in Target having a great time. Laughing, holding hands and being carefree. Then my phone rings. Nicolas has a sliver. Nic is in Buffalo. I'm in a different state. I give him all my love from a distance. I even blow him a kiss. Then I explain sliver tips to Nana. The ones that include NOT using the dreaded tweezers. I explain the glue and band-aid technique which has worked many times for us. I tell her next should be some sticky tape such as a small piece of duct tape. And so, last I heard, the glue was drying.
Now this crazy couple is home. Dear hubby is out running. I already ran this morning. Still training for that Expedition Everest 5K in WDW this September. Dog is barking. What else is new? Our dog, Disney, is so barky lately and we are running out of behavior plans. I keep reminding my hubby that he is a Behavior Analyst for humans.
So I figured that I'd check email and blog until my prince returns from his run. Then we can veg in the gazebo. Finally, for the evening's grand finale...oh c'mon now...ya must remember that we are TIRED. So, we are going to get some ice cream. Because it makes sense. We already ran off the calories, right?
Well, our morning at the Star Wars Weekend was lots of fun. Nic and I headed to the Starring Rolls Cafe where we got a table and waited for the doors to open at 9 a.m. Michael positioned himself to "walk" to fetch us FastPasses for Toy Story Mania. At 9 a.m., Michael was headed to get the FPs while Nic and I retrieved breakfast. After eating, we headed to meet some Star Wars characters.
And much to my surprise, I learn that I'm Ewok size.
I'm now gearing up for our week of couplehood. Days and evenings with no parental responsibilities except dialing a phone to see if our dear son ate, slept, minded his manners, practiced his violin.
My hubby will be working most days but he'll take a morning off to take me out to breakfast. Or an afternoon for shopping or maybe a whole day to go sightseeing nearby.
For relaxing evenings at home, I need movie recommendations. And let me remind you...we are about 8 years behind on movies. Oh, I'm not kidding. Except for maybe a few REALLY had to see flicks, we are a decade behind the general viewing public. It's sad.
So new flicks? Older movies? What do we just have to see?
Any chick flicks that I can watch during the day when I decide to ignore my before-mentioned projects?
Nicolas leaves this afternoon to visit his grandparents, as well as his aunt and uncle in Buffalo, NY. Michael will drive half way and transfer our precious cargo to Grandpa. Grandpa will then drive back to Buffalo where I know Nana will be waiting anxiously for Nic's arrival.
The quiet here will be deafening.
Once I'm used to the silence, I'll likely welcome the solitude. I may actually finish the Harry Potter book that I'm reading. Maybe I'll even be able to start another book.
I look forward to shopping and watching a movie. I really should just float in the pool and treat myself to the week of freedom.
I do have some projects that I'd like to tackle though. Unfortunately most of them include organizing and cleaning.
Michael and I will plan some date nights. Quiet dinners, early morning breakfasts, a movie, shopping and evening walks.
I'm trying to stock up on hugs and kisses.
I miss him...and he's still here.
My son likes to talk.
Actually he's been making noise ever since the day he was born. Three months early. After two months in the NICU, he was ready to come home. Before departing the hospital, the nurses said "you aren't going to be putting him in your room to sleep, are you?" At first, I thought this was going to be a debate on where a mother's infant should sleep. But no, the nurses explained that my little five pound baby made vocal noises all night long. Okay, sure.
I can now look back at that moment and nearly lose myself in a case of knowing laughter. Indeed my child has not shut up for..well...over 8 years. Does he just want to hear himself? Is he practicing for some future career where oratory skills are imperative? Is he slightly schizo? Well that's not amusing but sometimes ya gotta wonder. Is it an only child thing? Well, I'm an only child and I don't think I had this particular vocal syndrome.
Let me explain.
For the first 8 months of my son's life, there was non-stop crying. Now I know it was in large part due to the fact that he had reflux and other preemie issues. But now I have to wonder. Maybe he just couldn't shut up and that was his only way of expressing himself. Sure enough, in his sleep there was moaning, groaning and when words came...talking. The talking in his sleep, I think, has been nearly extinguished or maybe it's just that since we stopped using the monitor that I can't hear him any more during the night.
I can hear him during the day.
Nicolas talks all of the time. To us, to family, to friends, to himself. Last night I caught him in the bathroom holding an animated conversation complete with hand gestures as he toweled off from his bath/play time in my jacuzzi tub. When he uses the powder room downstairs and I'm in the kitchen, I can hear him TALKING to himself. Really. It. Never. Ends.
The only time the chatter does stop is when Nicolas is falling down tired. That doesn't happen often. Last night after a full day at karate camp which included a karate class, movie, swimming and crafts, then Nic had a violin lesson - Nicolas was tired.. By 7 p.m. at night, Nic was absolutely exhausted. I suggested he take a bath in my tub instead of a shower in his bathroom. I knew this would help transition him to bedtime. Tricky, aren't I? When he first got in that tub, he was lying in there silently. Before long, he was playing and talking. When he got out of the tub, he was having a full conversation with himself as he put on his pajamas. But shortly thereafter, he got in bed to watch a movie and then fell asleep. Silence.
Sometimes Michael and I can't wait for Nic to fall asleep just so the talking for the day is done.
The chatter is particularly interesting in the morning. I don't like to talk when I'm tired. This week on the 8:30 a.m. morning drive to karate camp, Nic has been, well, chatty. Most of the time, I love our talks in the car because we both have each other's attention and we have some real bonding time. This week, I've been tired. And yet, I've been asked and heard comments about the following:
"I wonder what the future will look like, do you?"
"Don't you think those farms are too close together?"
"when are we going to go see that cracked bell in Philly?"
"I'd like to go back to Virginia to go to the beach and that space museum."
"It really is a nice morning for a drive, isn't it?"
"On your way home, it'll be on your left, look at the small silos."
"I think I'll ask the magician tomorrow some questions (yeah, go right ahead as long as I don't have to think of answers!) like, well, have you ever pulled a rabbit out of a hat?
Then...there was some chatter about whether he should purchase a motorcycle or a car first when he's 16. Although if he has enough money, then he'll just get both. Sounds great!
But then, I do hear... probably more than my fair share of "Mom, I love you". But honestly, sometimes I think he says it just to hear himself.
How much does he talk? Enough to lose his voice. There have been countless times over the years when Nic has lost his voice. Because. he. talks. too. much! This happens quite frequently after a vacation (when he has our full attention) or a trip to his grandparents (when he has their full attention). He'll say "I'm losing my voice" And we inevitably say "because you talk too much".
There ARE times when Michael and I have to say to Nicolas, "please just stop talking for a minute". Sternly. This occurs most often when we are trying to think. Ya know, remembering what we ran in the store for, comparing items on a shelf, looking at a restaurant menu, paying attention to directions while driving in the car.
It just doesn't stop. The chatter, that is. And when I'm home in the house in silence. I savor it. Then I almost...begin to miss the noise.
In the land of Mickey's House, you can be transported from the Victorian elegance of the Grand Floridian, to the droid-filled galaxy at Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekend events. From a by-gone era to the futuristic world of star fighter pilots, my boys were so excited when this storm trooper greeted our arrival.
"Move along" we were told by the menacing storm trooper.
I was so thrilled to finally be bringing my husband and son to this event. Their smiles made this hot June trip worth every bead of sweat!
We stood waiting for the turnstiles to open and let us in. When they did, we had our tickets in hand. Were ready to step forward and then..a kid started puking a few feet to our left. We told Nicolas to keep moving. The poor kid standing WAY too close to us had taken ill from the Dark Force already. Very sympathetic but as we did not have our force shields activated we just had to move along!