Traffic for 2010 January

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happy thought: "If a person has ugly thoughts, it begins to show on the face. And when that person has ugly thoughts every day, every week, every year, the face gets uglier and uglier until it gets so ugly you can hardly bear to look at it.

"A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely."

--Roald Dahl

[Comments] (1) child's play: Maggie has named her horse "eat hay." I'm not sure if the hay portion is a surname or not. This is exactly why children should not be allowed to name pets. You end up, like my brother, with a dog named "Cheat" and a cat named "Mr Big."

Sometimes when we are trying to steer Maggie in a certain direction, we give her choices. For example, if I don't want to watch the ever-monotonous Baby Einstein, I'll hold up Toy Story 2 and Winnie the Pooh and tell her to choose one. I think this is how I would let my child "pick" a pet name. That is, make a list of acceptable selections and let her pick from the list. Incidentally, Maggie now brings me a selection of movies to watch and let's me pick. The girl catches on quickly.

Maggie also calls "Green Eggs and Ham" "peas and ham."

I spent the weekend being sick and trying to recover before the trip this weekend. It was boring but restful. And Dalton and I enjoyed a 3-mile jaunt while Susie & Maggie were communing with God. It was a bright sunny day and actually felt good to be outside. Dalton must have agreed as he didn't mutter a peep the whole walk.

like sissy like brother: Dalton likes to sleep just like Maggie did as an infant; that is, with his arms above his head. I wonder what kind of dreams they have....

[Comments] (1) for the children: I'm exhausted.

Friday we flew to the OC. We made it to the gate just in time to board, but luckily our flight departed 15 minutes late so we got a slight reprieve before take off. Airport security was a cakewalk, since apparently families get to go in a separate, and shorter, line. The only hassle was that the stroller wouldn't fit in the scanner and I had to get in another line and try again in a bigger scanner.

The check-in process was horrendous. We checked 3 bags and 2 carseats so of course it took a while. I apologized to the couple in line behind us but they just mumbled under their breath something or other.

Maggie and Susie boarded on time, but I opted to be the last on the plane so that Dalton wouldn't get antsy waiting for takeoff. He did quite well on the plane and fell asleep during take off and didn't wake up until landing.

Our rental car is a Nissan Murano. It is one of those push button starters, which I find silly. I mean, like it was soooo hard to turn the ignition key? I also learned that the car won't start unless your foot is on the brake pedal when you push the button. Susie and I assume this is to keep kids driving cars. It's a nice car otherwise, especially since my company said they would only get me a sedan.

Disneyland has been fun. Maggie seems to enjoy it, though it seems too busy for Dalton and easily overloads his senses. No matter the ride we pick, Maggie refuses to go on it at the last minute. Thus I've become one of those parents. Yes, I have forced her onto Winnie-the-Pooh, Alice in Wonderland, Finding Nemo, and Autopia, but she has enjoyed them all in the end. I think her favorite is Winnie-the-Pooh, with Dumbo and the Teacups rounding out the top 3, though she really enjoyed the Bug's Land attractions today. Maggie also changes her mind in line for the Teacups about 5 times, on average, on what color cup to ride in.

Maggie has also met Mickey, Eeyore, Pooh, and Tigger. She's been very shy with the characters, but they love her anyway. Pluto in particular gave Maggie and Dalton a good sniff-over. Maggie got a lot of attention in the parade, as we were front and center thanks to the awesome seats I procured.

It's a Small World is still decked out for Christmas, which I found odd. But Maggies likes Jingle Bells so I guess it works out. Maggie is too small for all the adult rides except for The Matterhorn. We told Maggie the Yeti therein was the one from Monsters Inc so that it wouldn't scare her. She says she wants to ride it again.

Disneyland is a lot of work when you have two kids. If Dalton is asleep, Maggie gets to ride everything twice so both Susie and I can get a turn. And if it's an adult ride, it's a duanting tale to watch two children in a sea of chaos. But Maggie has been super accomodating. For example, while Susie rode Indiana Jones, Maggie walked all the stairs in Tarzan's treehouse on her own so that I could hold Dalton. That thing has to have over 100 stairs. Maggie also doesn't complain when she asks for a certain ride and we tell her no (and the only reason we would tell such a cute thing no is if the ride is on the opposide side of the park). Maggie also has not once asked for a single toy. She found a magnet on the floor while I bought her a shirt so I bought it for her. Never seen someone get so excited for a magnet! She can't be too spoiled yet with such low expectations, right? We come home exhausted every night.

The weather has been in the 70s and is heaven. I can't believe I ever moved. But today a huge rainstorm moved in that is supposedly here to stay through the week. Even with the rain, it's still nicer than UT. I have hit the hot tub each night after the kids go to sleep.

Tomorrow is off to work while Susie is off to SLO to visit Pat and family. Then we'll hit Disney again this weekend and head home from there. Still on our list to do: Big Thunder Mountain, ToonTown, the Ferris Wheel, Toy Story again (it's a pretty cool ride!), California Screamin for Susie, the Redwood Forest. We did everything else in two days. That should tell any Disney connosiour just how exhausted we are.

The hotel is not as great as we had hoped. I swear online it said complimentary breakfast, yet here we are with a $12.95 buffet. And today our room didn't get cleaned. Dalton screamed in the lobby the whole time while they cleaned our room so I guess that's a mild payback.

Maggie is snuggled in our bed so I gotta go move her.

All in all, I highly recommed the post-holiday winter escape. Wish I could make it a yearly tradition.

[Comments] (2) California by rain: We survived the flood without an ark! Oddities on our trip include:

While waiting for the Pixar parade with Dalton asleep in his stroller, an Australian family attempts to share the bench with me. While their sons were supposedly bothering the father, he turned to his son and said "Stop hitting that man next to you. He's getting mad and he has a gun in his pocket." Sure, make me the bad guy. I didn't even care what his son was doing.

Maggie being a daredevil. She loved the ferris wheel, including the swinging gondolas. I should note that I have teenage nephews that won't ride on them! She also wanted to go on the roller coaster, but is too little. Instead, she went over and over again on the Gadget go-coaster and loved it! It's nice using parent pass with Dalton because Maggie gets to go on everything twice that way.

Going to Disneyland only to find it closed! I guess some people can't handle getting wet.

Flying in virtual peace. Both kids were the epitome of manners on our flights. People complimented them left and right. Our flight home was also full of MLM'ers coming home from a convention in Anaheim. Glad none of them were sitting next to me; the last thing I needed was a sale pitch for sludge juice.

I think the final tally on rides was thus: Winnie the Pooh, 14 times; Dumbo, carousel, and Teacups, around 10 times; kiddie roller coaster, 4 times; but the oddest of all was only riding twice on Doors, otherwise known to the rest of the world as Monsters, Inc. Maggie is obsessed with that show but apparently not the ride.

It was a nice winter getaway just in time before life becomes nothing but work again for the next few months. Anyone else ready for spring?

[Comments] (1) the power of the middle: I just bought a new vacuum. Our wedding vacuum was dead. We bought the middle model. I do this a lot. The cheapest model seems to me to lack quality and/or important features may be missing, and the most expensive model seems too offer nonessential features and/or seems overpriced for my needs.

I do this a lot. This is how our blender purchase went down (when our wedding blender died over Christmas). This is basically how I shop. I wonder if other people feel the same way. And if not, why not? Anyone out there who always buys the top of the line? Or the bottom of the line?


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