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yayyyyy for the beach!!

In the middle of the week, I took a "mental health" day off of work (I really need a mental health WEEK but since I've already taken 3 weeks off this year, that's not really in the cards for me). 


I picked up the girls from school. 


I told them to save their homework for later, cause we are going to the beach!!


It was such an especially nice day to be there, too.








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 I know:  my definition of a good beach day isn't the same as everyone else's.


I found out my friend at work went to the gym one day @ lunch and I told her I should have gone with her.....except it was cool and cloudy so on days like that I'd rather be outside.  And she said I'm crazy, on days like that she'd rather be inside and be out when it's sunny and warm.  I'm not normal.  It's ok.








But on our beach day, it actually was sunny and warm, but those clouds I love were hanging off in the distance and started rolling in.  It made my heart happy.






So did playing in the water:








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They were all excited cause usually when we end up at the beach it's one of the following scenarios:


a)  on a whim,

b)  in the evening,

c)  in a non-beachy month like January when it's freezing,

d)  they're wearing jeans or church clothes,

and I have to tell them not to get dirty or sandy or wet. 





Which makes the beach pretty boring. 


But this time I let them run wild and get as dirty as they could stand.








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She's a jumper:






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They are too:



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See a running theme w/ the bathing suits? 
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Polka dots (planned that).


And drill team colors (didn't plan that).








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Meditating or looking for shells....don't know which:








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I tried to tell her she wasn't going to get far on the boogie board if it was touching the sand, but she wouldn't hear me.





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So she tried this instead, which also didn't really work but she had a blast anyways (till she fell on her bum:




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This thing was a neat beach find......until in my trunk a month later and not only did it NOT smell good in there, but the stupid thing wilted and turned to mush all over the girls' pottery barn chairs.   Grrr.






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It was my mental health day, so I left my hair un-brushed.  Cause I could.





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 Such a fun day....totally cured my "mental health" problems:


 


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haaaaappy birthday!





Today is lil Mariah's 9th birthday.


These are some thoughts on her:




She is such a chunk and I wuv her so much.


She had this expression on her face for the firs 18 months of her life:






She likes to talk, and to hear herself talk.  :)  She will go on and on and on if you let her.  Which most of the time I do, because her voice is sweet and her stories are good.







She's as scared of water as it's possible to be, yet she's very brave too.  She goes on roller coasters that I'm terrified of, she pulls out her own teeth....








She is the most thoughtful, considerate little girl you'll find.










She is very emotional and often dramatic.







She has tons of friends & everyone likes her, she is sweet and funny.

She is the best little cuddler/snuggler.  You can hear her sucking on her finger ALL night long. 










If I try and do any touch-ups to photos of myself in photoshop, she tells me to leave the picture alone because I'm beautiful the way I am.

She saw a sign on a bus that said "1-800-GET-THIN" and she said "That sign is rude! It says GET THIN and what if people LIKE the way they are!".








She likes to help without being asked, in school and at home.


She is a mini-Jesse and they are best buddies:









That's my girl.  :)






She is so kind and sweet and happy, I hope I can be like her when I grow up.




And I hope she has a fabulous birthday!



Speaking of the 2nd Happiest Place on Earth:

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I still maintain the opinion that the beach is a happiest place on earth, and definitely much less expensive than Disneyland, but............  Disneyland is pretty happy and fun and magical.




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We kept it a secret until the night before.


Well I accidentally mentioned it when we were in Utah, because I'm dumb like that and I always do stuff like that.  Only Arissa was awake at the time, and she asked me later: "we're going to disneyland, aren't we".  I played it off and said "ha!  I'd sure like to, but we can't afford it".


And since we can't afford lots of stuff, she seemed to accept that. 


We told the girls we were taking a detour on the way home to stay overnight in "L.A.".


"Look, Mommy, our hotel is right by Disneyland!"


"Oo, isn't that neat!  Maybe we'll be able to see the Matterhorn as we drive by it on our way home."


:)




Easter night the girls had their showers, got into bed, and we pulled out a manilla envelope that we'd carried with us on the trip, and I had used it to write little things down here and there.  I looked at the envelope and laughed and said "hey lets read all the funny things I wrote down from our trip".  So we did.  Arissa read them all, we laughed and laughed.  (This whole thing, the "reveal", was Jesse's idea). 


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Then Jesse told Arissa to open the envelope, see if there were any more funny things written in there.


She did, and there weren't.  But what WAS in there was 5 tickets to Disneyland. 


Arissa was giggling and said "are you messing with me, Daddy??!!  DADDY!!! You better not be messing with me!!!".  It was hilarious.  The girls were ecstatic.




Disneyland was......perfect like Disneyland always is!


I got each of the girls these little doodle books beforehand, to pass the time in line, and I thought that was pretty clever of me.




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Except they only used them once, while waiting for the parade to start.  Besides that, the lines were too quick.  Which is a good thing.



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The teacups make Jesse sick so he has to close his eyes....its hilarious:



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Jesse & Arissa were the only ones brave enough to go on Splash Mountain:


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The parade was real neat, we got to see all out favorite people:



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Mariah got her wish, 5 years in the making.  She got to see Cinderella.



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So much fun.


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This is a parent's experience of Disneyland:




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But it's not every day you can get a pretzel shaped like Mickey Mouse for eight dollars.

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Gotta stay together:



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Disneyland definitely called for a unified "whoa howard"!"



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The end.  It was perfect.  Before hand I worried about what day we should go, what we should take, what rides we'd be able to go on, if we'd have fun.  But like everything else I waste my time worrying about, it all worked out better than I could have planned.

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