Sunday, March 30, 2014

Whew...Made It Through March!

I have spent many, many hours this weekend updating our blog, but I can now say March is FINALLY updated.  So glad to have our crazy, busy month up to date, but I just cannot help but blog. I want my kids to always have a scrapbook of themselves, their family, and their friends.  This is just one of my gifts to them that hopefully one day they will be glad I did for them.  And...I'm pretty sure the grandparents like reading the blog so I enjoy doing it for them to read too.  It's hard when you don't get to see the grandkids as often as you would like so this gives them a little piece of their grandkids every week or so.  

And now we are on to April...sad to say, but it is turning out to be just as busy.  But...there is always hope...May is looking pretty calm right now!

Cruise Vacation ~ Day 1...

On Christmas morning, the kids got a cruise vacation from Santa. We excitedly counted down the days from Christmas until Spring Break and on Monday, March 10th, it was FINALLY time!  Matt and I have a love for cruising and pretty water, which we have passed on to our children.  

Anna Lauren went on a cruise with us 2 years ago (her 5th birthday) and this was Cooper's first.  The kids loved everything about the cruise, and we got off the ship trying to figure out when we could go again.  Matt and I cherished every moment of the trip...these are sweet memories we will always have with our children.  Family vacations for sure high on our priority list!

All smiles in the Jackson airport at 5:30 AM...we had a 6:30 AM flight.  Because we had a 6:30 AM flight, our day started really early...Matt and I were up at 3:30 AM, and we were all up and out the door shortly after 5:00 AM. 

On the plane for our first flight...Jackson to Houston.  Anna Lauren flew when she was 16 months old so this was pretty much a first flight for both of them.  The flight attendant was really sweet and immediately brought them an activity sheet and cookies.

Thumbs up on the flight from Jackson to Houston...Cooper was too busy looking out the window to take a picture.  He LOVED the window seat and Anna Lauren was sweet enough to let him have it going and coming home.

Houston to Ft. Lauderdale...thankfully we all napped.  I was really hoping Cooper would nap so he would be ready to go once we got on the ship...I knew he would be tired if he didn't because we got up so early.

This picture actually out of order...we are in Houston waiting to board plane to Ft. Lauderdale.  Cooper was too busy looking out the window at the airplanes to take a picture.

Cooper was not having any part of taking pictures, but he did have a cute anchor shirt on too!  I was so excited to find anchor shirts for them when I was shopping for their Spring/Summer clothes because I knew they would be perfect for "travel" day.

Cooper's first night at "fancy" dinner...he thought he was something!  And...what I ask for it, you get service ever!  They had mixed fruit, but my kids asked for just grapes...sure enough, within minutes, they had just grapes.

My two favorite boys...

We were pretty tired the first night so we went back to the room fairly early...we all went to bed and Anna Lauren stayed up and watched the parade in the Promenade.  We LOVED our rooms...we actually had two adjoining rooms (cheaper than one...I know sounds crazy) with a window looking into the Promenade.  Would for sure do that again...loved watching all the "night" action from our room.

Cruise Vacation ~ Day 2...

Day 2 was a fun filled day on the ship!  We actually had reservations for the character breakfast but decided to let the kids sleep in and just go to the character breakfast on the last day.  Good call because the kids slept until 9ish that morning. 

We had breakfast at the buffet and then headed to the rock climbing wall...since Christmas, the rock climbing wall was on the top of Anna Lauren's "to do" list.

Cooper was very entertained on the basketball court while Anna Lauren was rock climbing...

She did really good but once she got this high, she decided that was high enough for her so she came down.

All smiles...she said she was going to do it again, but we just never got around to it again.

Next they hit the splash pad...

Cooper spent a lot of time in the hot tub...the water on the ship was FREEZING!

They knew they didn't have a chance with me, but they did talk their Daddy into getting in the I said, the water was FREEZING!

And then their was ice cream...happy girl!  For sure gets the love of ice cream from her Nanna.  Those two can eat some ice cream.

Cooper was not a huge fan of the characters...he would get close enough to give high fives and that is about all...

We typically have lunch at Johnny Rockets on our first "at sea" day...

They don't want Mommy to hear because they know she will likely say know so they are whispering to their Daddy...can we go to the arcade?  Of course, he is the fun parent!

So after a late late, they hit the arcade...

After our nap, we headed to the ice show before dinner...for sure one of our favorite shows on the ship.

The kids were very were the adults...such a good show!

This was our favorite...she probably ended with 20 hula hoops...

Thanks to MeMe, they had these darling matching outfits to, love, love them!  And yes, this is probably the last year I can get them to do this...tear, tear.

Night life in the Promenade...if you look on the left, you can see 3 lil pizzas hanging...our room was directly across from the pizza place so this is what we saw all the time from our room.  Some fun people watching!

After dinner every night, the kids wanted to go see what animals we had on our beds.  Cooper got really upset though when our stateroom attendant used his glasses.

We had taken a nap, so we were up for some night time adventures...a lil putt putt golf...

And a little basketball.  Then we headed to bed because we had a big day in Labadee the next day.

Cruise Vacation ~ Day 3...

We spent day three in Labadee, a Royal Caribbean private island. Matt and I went nine years ago and it has changed drastically so Matt REALLY wanted to go of the reasons we went on this particular cruise.

Cooper flirting with some college girls while we were patiently waiting to get off the ship...we had a little bit of a delay (20 minutes maybe) due to a medical emergency.  We had to wait for the helicopter who was getting someone that had gotten sick to get off the ship before we could get off.

Cooper and I played at the splash pad while Matt and Anna Lauren figured out exactly what they wanted to do...there were many things they wanted to do so they had to walk around and get their plan.

Cooper and I spent a lot of time just playing in the sand.  He was perfectly content and could have stayed there ALL day long.  Matt and Anna Lauren hit the water slide and the roller coaster.  Cooper was too little, but he never complained once...he was so happy playing in the sand and water.

Cooper was big enough to do the inflatables so they all did this these three and their happy faces...what vacation is all about...smiles and family!

Like I said, we LOVE pretty water!

This child...she cheers/stunts EVERYWHERE we go!

Coming down the water slide...

Cooper is in his "happy" place...

Headed back to the ship after a fun day in Labadee...

This just gives you an idea of how large this ship is...the people walking to get on the ship look like ants beside the big boat.

Once we got back on the boat, we had a super late lunch and then the kids crashed.  This is the first time on 7 cruises that we have skipped dinner (we would not do early dinner again...we like late). But once they got up, they couldn't wait to go ice skating...this was the first night the ice skating rink was open.  Cooper fussing here because Daddy wouldn't let him do "tricks".

He would make one loop around the rink and then take a break...Matt would make a loop alone or with Anna Lauren and then get Cooper again.

Pure sweetness...I wish these kids REALLY knew how great of a Daddy they have...they just think all Daddy's are like him.

After ice skating we decided we were ready for dinner so we had a late night dinner (yes, 10 PM) at Johnny Rockets.  Super fun and so something you only get to do on vacation...

And we ended the night watching the show in the Promenade from our room...

The stage was right outside our window.  They did start throwing light up rings so Matt took them to the Promenade so they could get a ring.  And then we went to sleep with excitement of Jamaica when we woke up the next morning.