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Saturday, January 28, 2006

Long Beach 2006

I just want to say that I missed blogging so much more than I thought I would! I thought about it every day (okay, sometimes more) and was wishing that the hotel had free internet access. We were usually too busy or too tired to go up the street with the kiddos and sit in the Long Beach "hot spot". So, I'm making up for it by starting this entry just a few hours after we got home.

Here's a recap of our trip.

Monday: This was our travel day. Sugar Daddy spent the morning enriching the bright, young engineering minds of Nebraska. I spent the morning trying to put pants on two toddlers. We got out of the house around 11am and by 2pm we were in the air. Frog loved the airplane. He's been on plenty of airplanes but this is the first time I think he really "got it". He loved it so much that he threw one of his famous tantrums on the way out of our first leg (Phoenix). He kept screaming, "MORE! MORE AIRPLANE!". We tried to explain that after a quick stroller ride he would indeed get his wish, but try reasoning with a tantrum-throwing two yr. old. We were lucky enough that there was enough room on both flights that Big Apple got her own seat. The flight attendants were really great and gave us plenty of pretzels and drinks.

Our rental car was awesome. I'm a big fan of using Priceline for rental cars and most hotel rooms. This time around we got a Chevy Impala. It sure beat the Dodge Stratus we would normally get. Note: I owned a Dodge Stratus for several years and enjoyed it immensely---I just don't want to drive it as a rental with 2 kids to get in and out.

We stayed at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach. It is right along the harbor and has a great view of the Queen Mary. I would have taken pictures but we didn't have a balcony and the flash from the window wouldn't have done it justice. We went to bed almost as soon as we got there.

Tuesday: Sugar Daddy woke up early to go and register for his conference. He was also kind enough to snag us a little breakfast from the reception. I got a banana nut muffin and freshly squeezed orange juice. I made sure that he brought me that same breakfast the rest of the days we were there. I got the kids ready and we hung out in the hotel most of the morning. Sugar Daddy came back at noon to take us out to lunch. We just went across the street to Chilis. It was okay. The service was horrible. But, we had some good leftovers for dinner. That afternoon the kids and I walked around Shoreline Village and then played in the hotel until SD returned from his sessions. That night we went to Gameworks. We played skee ball, shootin hoops, and lots of games to win tickets to buy wonderful toys. Oh yes. We got plastic bracelets, a slinky, bubbles, a glider plane, and some other things. Very lucrative. :) The kids weren't so big on playing the games, but they loved the booty we brought home.

Wednesday: We started the morning with a good breakfast at the Long Beach Cafe. It was one of the best breakfast plates I've ever had. SD concurs but only because it was cheap, I'm sure. We had to have a good start to our day because we were going to DISNEYLAND! We went with our friends, the Vaughans, that live in Redondo Beach. They met us there and we started off at California Adventure. I hadn't been to Disneyland in probably 20 years. It was so great to see it again. The kids had a great time in the Bug's Life area at CA Adventure. Then, the grownups took turns riding Soarin'. It was pretty good. I loved how they have the smells of the pine trees and the ocean. Good stuff. After that, we booked it over to Disneyland to ride Buzz Lightyear. What a great ride. I wish I could have gone more than once (the kids and SD did while I went to Space Mountain w/ Catherine). It's my kind of ride. They score you on your ability to shoot at the alien targets. After Space Mountain, the kids danced at Club Buzz. Frog stole the show. He's really a talented dancer. I'm not just saying that because I'm his mother, either. He's got some skills that are clearly genetic (SD and I aren't totally lame dancers but we have nothing on this kid). We also rode Pirates of the Caribbean (one of my all-time faves), Indiana Jones (so-so), It's a Small World (don't you have to go on this?), and the carousel. The lines weren't very long at all. I was surprised. We only used our fast passes once.

This day ended after the long trek back to the parking garage and then a 3o minute drive back to the hotel. The longest lines of the day were by far the ones for the parking tram.

The kids fell asleep on the way home and I had us make a little detour to the Alamitos Bay Yarn Company. I bought two skeins of Lorna's Laces in Flames and one skein of Debbie Bliss cashsoft in pale blue.

Thursday: Sugar Daddy spent all day and some of the evening at his conference. The kids and I walked around a lot. That night, Merrill and Bruce came over to swim. Frog and SD went down, too. I stayed in the room with BA. She was sleeping and I was knitting. I don't remember much about this day except that I remember questioning why I would want to spend a week in a hotel room instead of a week at home with the kids by myself.

Friday: This was our last full day in Long Beach and I was determined to make the most of it by going whale watching (also known as the $20 purge). Most of you know that I get horrible motion sickness. Why I thought I could do this is beyond me. The last time I went whale watching was when I was in 6th grade. I spent most of this trip puking. But, I did see 5 whales. I should have learned from my experience skiing and with horseback riding that there are some things I'm just not cut out to do. In my defense, Sugar Daddy puked first. I was doing okay. The kids fell asleep almost as soon as we hit the open water. I had to go to the bathroom and while I was in there I knew I wasn't going to make it much longer. I'm glad I puked in private and not over the side of the boat like my dear husband. We saw one sea lion and no whales. Lovely. No matter what I say remind me to never, ever go whale watching again.

Saturday: Like Monday, most of today was spent travelling. It was pretty much a repeat of Monday except the people at the LAX US Airways are jerks. The other airports had great customer service. Not LAX. I hate that place. Frog threw his tantrums today but I was more prepared for what I was up against. It didn't make it any more enjoyable, but at least I was ready. The leg from Phoenix to Omaha was a nightmare. It was a totally booked flight which meant that Big Apple had to be on our lap. We took turns. She was squirmy and cranky the whole ride. Luckily the guy sitting next to us was understanding and nice.

When we got home, we assessed the kitchen situation and I made a quick trip to the store. We need to have some food to celebrate the Frog's THIRD BIRTHDAY tomorrow! I can't believe he's going to be 3 already. I'll be sure to post about that tomorrow (and I'll include pictures!). For now, it's bedtime!


  1. I missed you blogging as much as you missed blogging. Wish the Frog a Happy, Happy Birthday from us (not that he probably has a clue who we are!) I'm slowly starting to blog. Check it out when you have time.

  2. Thank goodness you're back! I need the Crafty Conservative! What's a fast pass?

  3. Matt always kicks my butt at Buzz Lightyear. Grrr.

  4. Dramamine (or the equivalent) is good for boat rides. It must be taken in advance though.

  5. Dramamine hasn't always worked for me (plus, we didn't have any). Motion sickness is a big deal in my family. We're big believers in the transderm scop patch.