Hello, friends. This one is a doozy, so be prepared.
Baby cat is getting accustomed to life at the Starnes house. She's fattening up a bit, starting to play and loves quiet time with Lainey more than anything.
Jack wrapped me a birthday gift. Spent over an hour on it. I love kids.
We dropped off our Operation Christmas Child boxes at the Calvary Chapel down the road.
Our contributions seemed meager compared to the box loads due to big organizations who participate, but we still felt good about giving.
Off to Anaheim we went.
Checked in, got comfy and took a long nap pre-park visit.
When the kids woke, they found Stefan the Elf perched above the bathroom mirror. Silly elf. Found us at the hotel.
We didn't arrive until dark, which was lovely.
Everyone renewed passes. Nice one, Jack.
Ate, road and laughed our way through the park. There are fewer places in the world that make Caroline and I happier than Disneyland with our kids.
Laine got this Rapunzel dress from Caroline and Jack brought his Halloween costume. The good thing about these pieces? Extra layer of warmth when it gets chilly at night.
Stephan sat perched with a driver's license from the Autopia driving school in the park. Which can mean only one thing. He drove one of the cars, too. Those elves are sneaky!
Carter's Vinylmation obsession is in full force. He'd like this one, Pa.
Time to see Santa! Good thing the littlest bit was dressed truthfully.
Life isn't going to be as much fun anymore when she can read.
Tree didn't come down. Promise.
I can't recall if Santa or Carter initiated the hand shake, but it was an odd representation of what is changing this year. Carter now "knows". Blake, Caroline and I sat him down to fill him in. More to come on that.
The Santa visit gives me anxiety every year. Not because I honestly care of if my kids sit properly on his lap and politely request a toy. I gave up on that a long time ago.
It's the damn lines!
Santa at California Adventure took only about 10 minutes. He left briefly - probably to do some shots in the back like I would be doing if I had this job - and the picture went well.
Crossed off the list, baby! And, before December even arrived.
Caroline and I tortured Carter with head bands and just about anything else that came to mind.
Speaking of my sweet Caroline......she left a day early after not feeling good and is now in the hospital. Hopefully just a brief visit.....her fever is normal and blood pressure looks good.....but please pray for her if that's your kind of thing.
Sourdough Mickey? No fanks. We got a sourdough turkey instead.
Caroline carved it!
Laine enjoyed her reindeer nose paci instead. Vacation Fairy brought that one.
Mickey's Art Class!
We danced a little.
We worked briefly on a Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.
Blake joined us after work and danced with his daughter under the fireworks.
Our kids love when Pa or Caroline visit Disneyland. Or just about anywhere!
And, yes, for more than the souvenirs.
This was a Disney suggested set up.
Yes, yes, and yes. Blake's going to kill me, though.
Decorated the tree and opened presents with Caroline the next day.
The tree is an heinous as ever.
Kids opened LSU ornaments from Aunt Mary. Awesome.
Caroline and I just sat back and watched. It was a fun night.
There's been a whole lot of cuteness since Finn McMissle joined our family. Our little girls nap together.
The house is adorned with lights now.
And, tacky Santa, of course.
Working on the 'outdoor living room'. Blake painted this piece - the first piece of furniture we ever bought together - and will continue with a few more coats and a faux finish.
Next up, cable guy arrives to hook it all up.
I have been a busy little bee with Mom's Little Secrets. Subway art and teacher gifts are keeping me up at night. But, I'm loving it.
Off to wrangle kids to bed. Back soon!