Thursday, April 30, 2009

I'm back!

Sorry about the long delay with out any new post. Our family just returned Sunday from a 2+ week vacation to Florida. This post will mostly be blah, blah, blah about my trip so if you are only interesting in the stamping part of my life you might want to skip this post, though I have a second one with todays Elzybell challenge that I will put up just as soon as I am done with this one.

I have spent the last several days doing what seemed like a mountain of laundry, grocery shopping and catching up with everyone. Does it ever seem like your vacation makes you need a vacation? Anyway we had a wonderful time. We spent the first week of our vacation on Sanibel Island, at the beach or mostly anyway because our 2 day drive to get there turned into 4 1/2 days. We started out on Good Friday in 2 vehicles because we were bringing Matt (our oldest son) his car, which is finally on the road. We ended up staying the night near him and having breakfast with him on Saturday morning before we began the rest of the trip to Florida. Of course when we were within hours of our destination, we had a break down with our camper (on Easter Sunday). After dealing with towing, finding a hotel to stay at, waiting for the mechanic to find the part, fix the rig and get back on the road we were really, really anxious for the fun to begin. We had planned on spending Easter with my father in law so we stopped for a quick visit with him then finally arrived on Sanibel Tuesday. We stayed at the only campground on the island, a very nice place with an incredible collection of exotic birds and lemurs. My girlfriend Carol and her family graciously hosted us as well. Allowing us use of her beautiful home that is within easy walking distance of the beach. We were joined by another one of my friends and her children and everyone had a wonderful time. Between the wonderful company, lovely beach, fabulous food, fun by the pool and deep sea fishing for the guys I think we had one of the best times ever. Of course me, being me, didn't manage to finish my last 3d project for my Artisan Award entry before we left so I ended up finishing it poolside and shipping it over night from the island so it would arrive in time

Our second week we spent in Orlando, with my parents. We were able to get our three little ones together with their biological brother for a lovely visit which went beautifully. Now when we adopted Jessi and Manny we took them to Disney World to celebrate. So when we knew that Ellie's adoption was really going to go through we planned this trip as her celebration, she requested that we also visit Sea World. Here are some of the pictures from Sea World

Isn't he handsome? He was quite happy to pose for his picture.
My kids were amazed by the manatees...
and awed by the dophins.
the crew, forced to pose for mom...
Now I have to say that Disney World is one of my favorite places and I work for the Disney store part-time so I might be the tiniest bit biased but I have to say that this years Celebrate theme at Disney is wonderful. Maybe you know that you can go to Disney World for free on your birthday but did you know that if you go to guest services and let them know what you are celebrating the will give you (and your whole party) a pin that states what you are celebrating? I knew that they had pins for the usual birthday, first trip, honeymoon, anniversary stuff but figured I had nothing to lose by letting them know that we were celebrating Ellie's adoption. They made up some special pins of Ellie and all of us and I have to say that everyone made a huge deal out of Ellie and she could not have felt more special. Several castmembers and even several of the character really, really went out of their way. For a little girl that had a really kind of rough beginning in life to have everyone congratulating her, fussing over her and just generally making everything so special is a huge deal. I am still tearing up just thinking about it and I wish I could let each of them know how grateful I am for recognizing what a really big deal this was. Okay enough mushy stuff, how about some more pictures?

Our reason to celebrate...
Meeting with the mouse...
lunch with Pooh and friends....
Ellie's favorite princess, Ariel...
resting with Roy Disney and Minnie...

4 comments:

Tootie said...

Even though you had kind of a rough start; I'm glad the rest of your vacation went well. The kids all look so happy in your photos. What lucky children they are! :-)

paulatracy66 said...

What a great story and your photography is amazing!! Wow, what a group of cuties you have running around your house. What a lucky group you all are to have each other!! Thanks for sharing...

Stacy aka Twinshappy on SCS said...

Oh love the pcitures, you look like you had a fun time from the pictures.

Jean from jlfstudio said...

What a wonderful way to celebrate a life change event! I'm so glad it all worked out even with the rough start. Terrific you got your Artisan Award entry posted in time too!

Thanks for sharing the joy and the pic's.

Hugs and blessings - Jean