Category Archives: places

Balboa Island

One afternoon we met Uncle Brad, Aunt Julie, and Uncle Brian at the college and sailed to Balboa Island. We took the boys to the Fun Zone for some good old fashioned arcade fun and ate delicious ice cream. We had such a fun day!

The boys loved sailing and looking at all the sites on the water. Layla seemed to enjoy it too. She liked playing with the lines and reaching out for the water.

The trip back was a memorable one. It was a bit cooler by then, and Layla was t-i-r-e-d. She was wailing and we were going into the wind, tacking back and forth. Uncle Brad would say “tack the baby”, I’d leap across with her screaming on my lap, and then everyone else would switch sides and we would tack. In between I tried to calm her with some songs, but she was just over it. Eventually we made it back though and got her to sleep!

We startled a couple of pesky seals

At the Fun Zone

This girl LOVED her ice cream!

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California Adventure

Wow, looking at all the smiles in these pictures reminds me how much fun we had at California Adventure. Cars town was pretty awesome, and Kieron was excited to do the bakery tour. Silas loved meeting all the characters. We stayed all day and had a great time!

“Oh my God!” It’s Woody & Jessie!”

Is that a happy face or what?!

“Do I have something on my face?”

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Newport Beach

We spent a few days at Newport Beach. Uncle Brian showed us the good spots and was a big sport playing with the boys at the beach. He even let Avery & Kieron stay over one night, which they loved!

At the beach

Digging to China

On a sand mountain

Layla was crawling into the waves to get to Avery. I kept having to reign her in!

Water baby

We went out to dinner with Uncle Brian at the boys favorite restaurant, The Old Spaghetti Factory

At breakfast. Silas wanted his picture taken with the VW

Another day at the beach

At Uncle Brian’s

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Disney Land

After we had a little time to enjoy the water we felt ready to brave Disney Land with four kids. We opted to do a 3-day pass (2 at Disney, 1 at California Adventure). For simplicity’s sake I’m including all Disney pics in this post.

Our first day at Disney was a total bust. In fact, we almost didn’t go back. It was PACKED! We learned a couple hours in that while we chose this week because it was NOT a busy one, Disney offered a Groupon for locals this week specifically for that reason! I spoke to one local mom who said she goes all the time and had never seen it so crazy! Wait, what?! We only got on a few rides the whole day and were totally worn out (and a little grumpy).

I’m so glad we did go back though. Our second day was pure Disney magic. By then we had all the fast passes and rider swaps figured out, and we went on tons of rides and met lots of characters. I’m so glad we had that second day, because it completely changed our impression of Disney Land. We all had a fantastic time!


Splash Mountain

Avery & Kieron did Jedi training in the morning

This pirate sang a special sea shanty just for Layla using her name in it

Saying “hi” to some friends. Silas was STARSTRUCK!

Thunder Mountain

Space Mountain was a little scary for Silas. Looks like Daddy loved it though!

I’m tall enough!

We went through Tarzan’s treehouse a bunch of times. The boys loved it.

At Toon Town. Surprisingly, the boys loved it. They ran around for a long time checking everything out.

Finding Nemo Submarine. Not that exciting.


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Although theme parks were on the agenda for our trip, we were in no hurry to get to them. First on the to-do list was some time on the water! The boys had never been sailing before, and we were excited to show them what it was all about. Uncle Brad directs the sailing program at Orange Coast Community College, so he was all over getting us on a boat. Here are some pics from a couple of our outings.

Oops! Poor Kieron took a boom to the head before we even set sail the first day! Poor guy!

The boys were naturals at the helm

Layla was quite comfortable on the water

Uncle Brad, Avery, & Uncle Brian

We had lunch at the Newport Harbor Yacht Club a couple of afternoons.

They are in the middle of building a new club, so the current location is a temporary one. Here the boys are checking out the site of the new yacht club.

The temporary yacht club consists of a small beach portion and the rest of it is on the yacht pictured here, the Barney Lehman.

Avery found a coupe of sea slugs while he was digging on the beach. He brought them up to our table to show us. Wish I’d been quick enough to get a picture of Uncle Brad holding it up at the table! Eeeew!

Playing on the beach with Uncle Brian

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