Day 31-Stats during Blogathon; the end

So, the blogathon ends? Wah! Thanks to the Disney trip I had enough fodder to last me a week and get through this blogathon. Suddenly, today as I woke up, I had atleast  3 thoughts that I could put up in posts. Why does this always happen? When I am raking my brains to get fodder  for posts and nothing comes up, suddenly on the last day all these thoughts that can be put into a proper post.

For now, how ever, I am surprised the amount of attention this blog has received during this last one month. Seriously! I do not believe that I can have more than 300 views in one day – here, take a look:

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Thank you all for coming by here, can you please drop me a one liner so I know who you are. (Ofcourse excluding those friends and family who are always encouraging)I would love to get to know you and read your blogs too. I am so overwhelmed by all this attention! Why? It’s not that I write anything useful to anyone else. And that day’s post was only on the weather!

I think it will be quite a hypocrisy if I say that i will be regular here etc etc; I have been saying the same thing in multiple posts now. I know pretty well that I will just get back into my lazy cocoon reading my books and blogs instead of thinking and putting posts. But can I say, let me try to put a post a month atleast? That should be achievable. Especially that should make us travel and I can put up a travel post eh?! hubby – are you reading this? 😉

So long, farewell…
Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye

 

 

 

 

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Day 30- Books recently read

The best part of living here are the amazing libraries. Even more so, the online access – I can sit at home and take books on loan for 14days. Even those that do not have a hard copy available yet. I have finished all the latest Danielle Steele and Nora Roberts and Debbie Macomber.

One that I recently read was Jeffery Archer’s last book of the Clifton Chronicles – This was a Man. – Definitely not as fast paced as the previous ones but I think it had to slow down by the time the hero’s life ended too – right?

For Sam, after reading Sangi’s post, I picked up Joy Berry Wilt’s books on – Whining, interrupting and being forgetful as these are the issues that we are facing every single day. There are more on these behaviour issues that I intend to pick up the next time around. Thanks Sangi!

I also picked up Guess how much I love you – which Sam read within a few minutes and also made his Dad read it for him 🙂 and Free to be You and Me. Problem with Free to be You and Me is that it has more poetry that Sam could not relate to. One look through the book and reading a couple pages and he said he did not want to read that anymore.

I finally picked up The Magic Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton to start Sam with more chapter books with lesser pictures. We read 1 chapter every night and I am glad that he seems to be looking forward to it and talks about it. I hope this helps him with the comprehension issues that he teacher has been talking about in class.

Next in list is Diary of Wimpy kid that a friend graciously has lent. Said her son who is Sam’s classmate reads and enjoys them.

I read a few more books the last couple of months but I am unable to recall them right now 😦 I also have the following books placed on hold from the library:

a. Harry Potter and the cursed child – I STILL haven’t been able to get my hands on this book!

b. Me before you – after reading at many of your blogs

c. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseni

d. the Spy by Paulo Coelho

1 each of Nora roberts/Danielle steele and Debbie Macomber. There are plenty of Jodi Picoult too but each time I get it until checkout and drop it in fear that it will affect my mood. However much I love her books, i kind of get depressed or it gets too heavy for me to read it all at one go. And I am not ready to get more depressed than I already am what with this lousy weather and not going out anywhere.

One thing I really miss in these libraries are the Indian Authors and the historic fictions. I should hoard them the next time I go to Bengaluru.

Day 29 – Are we behind the curve?

Like I said before, Sam goes to quite a few classes – Monday music class, monday and tuesday an hour extra primetime in school (now that it is winter and he cannot play outdoor)for Chess and Lego robotics, saturdays are for ice skating. We plan to also get him to start swimming come February. Ofcourse the spring soccer in April.

All these classes are as a hobby. Neither hubby nor me think much about this. Even Karate, soccer and swimming are more of something that can help him get rid of the excess energy and we keep thinking of such activities for him. We are not very keen on sending him to Kumon or Russian math or any other language classes or for that matter art because a. we know he does not have interest in sitting through art class b. these classes feel more educative and again class room-ish than fun and activity.

But, we see a lot of parents who do kumon and math classes. The parents take these classes more seriously than the kids and driving them around 2-3 days a week. All 5 days have some class or the other where as we have wed,thur and fri free. Infact we try to keep the weekend free too for purely selfish reasons that we don’t have to drive him anywhere or we can make other weekend plans.

We have never considered these activities as competitive sport either. Swimming is a life-skill we think and skating is fun. Soccer is something all kids do here and you know…while in Rome…When we meet and hear other parents talking about how the kids are performing and what next- oh! this club for soccer and this for swimming and we want them to compete… I wonder – Are we behind the curve? We never tell Sam to be competitive, we always only tell him to do his best and enjoy the sport. It is ok if he is not the best. And I am wondering today, after another such discussion, are we not telling him the right thing? Should we tell him to be competitive and push and rush and enter the race?

 

I am very confused right now and taking this to bed with me…Good night!

Day 28 – Ice Skating Saturday

Winter in Chicago – everyone knows how cold it can get. Along with it comes some fun activities like the sledging we did during that snow storm or playing with snow. More organised are the classes – Ice skating/ice hockey even performance skating.

The town where we stay has its own program and events for spring/summer/fall and winter and when the booklet for winter came home, we saw ice skating for kids. It sounded fun and since this is something Sam can learn only here, we enrolled him for 50mins class every Saturday morning.

The very first class we went, I was all excited, I told the hubby that we could rent skates and try to skate for an hour someday once Sam learns how to do it. Then, during the class I saw – I saw how everyone was falling – every kid was falling on his/her butt and falling real hard! Poor kids… I felt really sorry for them. But being the smart adult, I backed out of trying it myself. 😛

Poor Sam, he doesn’t know he has a choice of backing out 😛 Evil parents that we are, we promise him warm bath tub time and take him to class 😀 Today, was the 4th class and he has finally learnt to skate a little without falling flat on his back! But each class is a challenge. Every class they teach them to bend knees, touch toes, wiggle their waist and today it was lifting leg and skating on 1 leg! My God! How the kids fell and how well they all just got up and tried again! Kudos to all the kids who come there with the determination of learning!

Me? I’m the insensitive mom who giggles when he falls. Here’s a picture of Sam trying to learn to skate:

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And hey! I have to add, I drove him to the skate class today because hubby was travelling and was still returning from the airport. Times like these I feel like an achievement on the driving front! Should just get out there and do it!

 

Day 27 – Sam Updates(3)

Sam always has an ear for music. He used to catch the lyrics of Hindi songs that played on the radio even in Bangalore so I am not surprised that he learnt quite a few songs from one of his friends in school.

During Thanksgiving 2015, while my in-laws were visiting, we were in Washington DC at a relative’s house. Their son, a nurse at a hospital close by was home for the holidays too, and to spend time with us. On day 2 in their house, he comes and tells me – I hope you know Sam has learnt this new song from school. My only question was “Is it appropriate for him?” And Abhi says, yes, it is the top of the charts right now and Sams says he learnt it seeing some kids dancing to this in school. I was quite surprised that Sam hadn’t mentioned it to me. So, I put the song on youtube and watched/listened to it until i was convinced that it was ok for Sam to know. Now, everytime I hear this song, it reminds me of Abhi and this incident 🙂

The American boy that he is becoming, here are some of the songs he has learnt from friends around him. Some of them are fine, some of them I am not OK with the lyrics, but hubby says not to make a deal of it as all kids are singing these songs. One more song I liked that Sam sings:

I had never heard of him before, but apparently Charlie Puth is quite famous on the music scene now. Here are a couple of his songs that I hear all the kids here singing: (Not very happy with these songs though 😦 )

And then finally, my boy has become Amreecan:

On Tuesday, while having bath, he asks me “Amma, is it ok if I love anyone else also, other than you?”

Me “Yeeesssss, who else do you love? Appa?” Wondering where this is going

Sam “Nooooo….. I think I love I” *My heart stopped beating and Sam was looking at my face for a reaction*

Me “Who is she? In your class?”

Sam “Yes”

Me “Why do  you think you love I?”

Sam ” I like her, I like talking to her”

Me “OK”

After a few seconds of me not saying anything else

Sam “Don’t worry Amma, I will always love you”

Abbha! Thank you God! My son is giving me assurances that he will love me forever!

But I couldn’t stop smiling or worrying if this was ok. What? He just turned 7 and he is talking about love? In my head I’m thinking “You can’t even wash your bum properly yet or have your own bath and you are in luuvvv???”

I called the hubby and told him. He says”I thought this was coming, he has spoken about I a couple of times before” My eyes just popped out – what? Aren’t you worried? He says “Why worry? See think like this, now you know your son likes girls” Duh!! really? and he says “Relax R, this is the age when he starts liking girls, I also remember I was in 2nd grade when I first liked some girl”

After that I am left thinking – Am I retarded or what? Why I didn’t know what crush was until I was in 9th grade. Stupid me!

Sigh… I just hope he – I mean Sam! comes and tells me about all the girls he ‘likes’ *rolling eyes* and patting my heart to get it to normal rate again…

Happy Weekend folks!

Day 26 -Weather update

In pictures:

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So, this above picture was taken sometime in the first week of November at around 8 in the morning. This is my favourite sight to see from the balcony – I can see hubby driving to and from work, I can see the school bus coming, I have seen a thunderstorm cloud forming and lighting strikes, so I clicked this picture as the sun rays hit those trees. A few weeks later we had a snow storm and this below picture shows how it was:20161204_104957

As you can see, this was taken while it was still snowing. By the time the storm ended there was lot more snow on the pavements 🙂 Finally, the below picture was taken on the pond that is right across the perpendicular street – do you see the STOP sign and the main road? – right behind that. This pic was taken on Saturday to actually show my mom where the geese were – she was worried about the geese in winter 😀  I sent the below picture to her saying that the geese are happy walking on the frozen pond:20170121_163624

This week’s been a blessing with Saturday’s temperature at 56F but it is dipping again with snow tomorrow and over the weekend – what is this weather? – 56F feels warm!

Day 25 – Cleaning before a trip

OK here goes this post on cleaning not just before a trip but also before we head out anywhere. A constant topic of irritation and many many arguments in our household.

According to the husband, I have a cleaning OCD. Before we head out for an evening, when I know we will be late coming home and I will not have the mood or energy to clean then, I spend sometime making sure the house is in order.

I have a confession to make. I hate washing vessels. It is the most tedious, most irritating task. Even more so, when I wake up in the morning and see last evening’s dishes in the sink and I have to wash them first thing in the morning. So, if we are going out in the evening, I wash everything, clean the kitchen counters and kind of make it ready for next morning. Be it weekend or weekday. Many a times this has caused arguments between hubby and me for this reason – that I will be cleaning 30mins before we need to leave and hubby will be watching TV. If I ask him to get ready, he says “you are doing something else and will take longer to get ready, so I will get ready once you are ready” which means we never start on time and are always atleast 15mins late. That gets me too…going late anywhere (ok, that is perhaps for another post).

I HAVE to narrate this incident here. One day, last year, 2 families made plans to watch a night show movie on a Tuesday night. Post dinner, the family of 4 came home to have coffee and then start for the 9:30pm show. So made coffee for all and I just could not leave the cups there – I washed them all while they waited. How long does it take to wash 4cups? Well, hubby was irritated that we made them wait and we argued on the way to the theater. Movie done, we returned and slept at 1am. At 3:30-3:40am there is loud banging on the door, there are police and fire engines standing outside and we are asked to evacuate the house immediately. The warehouse next to the apartments had caught fire and was quickly spreading. We rushed out, called the friend again to pick us up as we were not allowed to take out the car either. It took 4-5 days for the fire to be doused completely and the health authorities to deem the air fit enough for everyone to return. Imagine, if I had not washed those coffee cups that day at 9pm? euuwww! After that incident, hubby now reluctantly agrees that it is good to cleanup before we leave. It took a fire and evacuation for him to start seeing things my way now 😛

Like I said, before any trip, I clean up the house – sweep swab/vacuum/toilets cleaned,bath tubs cleaned, vessels washed, kitchen counter cleaned, fridge cleaned,perishables used up, milk that would last until we return stocked, water purifier cleaned and kept for drying, tables and TV cleaned, bed made, laundry done and trash discarded as we step out. The only laundry that is allowed is that day’s. I plan these activities and span them across 2 days so that I don’t get stressed. But everytime, hubby does! He starts, why are you cleaning the bath tubs now? We can come back and vacuum, we have to anyway do laundry as soon as we return,nobody is coming home, we are going out etc etc;

Here is the deal for me.Before I go on a vacation, I have the josh and I will be looking forward to the  vacation, so these tasks get done in a positive frame of mind. On returning I will be upset that the vacation is over and I will already be writing a new to-do list in my head for the following week. I do not want to carry forward tasks that I should have done already. I do not want to come home and scrub the sink, clean the stove or the toilets or make the bed. I want to come home and feel happy coming home and feeling that the house looks clean and neat – just like how I would’ve felt entering that hotel room. Does it sound silly?  These tasks feel like a burden if I have to do them once we return. I want to live in the euphoria of the vacation for at least 1 day before landing in reality.

Vacations are fun when planning and executing, but the returning really sucks. Doesn’t it?

 

 

Day 24 – Disney trip in retrospect

Some thoughts and points on the Disney trip in retrospect. After all those lengthy posts, I am going to make this a bullet post.

  • When we planned the trip, it was a one-time affair and I wondered who would want to take a membership and take all vacations in Disney. After spending 6 days there, I now understand the lure of the place. The ‘happy, happy’ place it makes even the most grumpiest person (including the husband,he he, ;-P) smile. While I waited for the Very Merry Christmas party, I saw families around me who were visiting for the 4th time or the 5th time. I met a teenage daughter and mother from London who make an annual visit but the mom said that they had never been there at Christmas before so they planned to be there for Christmas and New Years that year before the daughter went away to college the next year
  • Like I said before, we had taken a quick meal plan which gave us 2 meals per person per day and a snack. The quantity of food that came for a meal used to be huge – more often than not we would be waddling after a meal and not  feel hungry upto 5-6hrs. This, considering we went in search of veggie options. For those who are non-vegetarian,I guess the portion sizes are larger. So, unless your family has growing teenagers who can really eat well, or if you are vegetarians, I think it makes sense to buy food individually instead of the meal plan
  • On the positive side, what worked for us with the meal plan was that we experimented. Instead of sticking to Starbucks sandwiches or McDs or same old pizza, we went in search of veggie food options because of the meal plan. However, by the 6th day we realized we still had quite a few snack credits remaining.  So, for that last day, I picked up chocolate chip cookies and water bottles and carried with us to the airport hence ensuring that we did not leave any credit unused
  • It helped to read up Disney related blogs -I read this one extensively: http://www.disneytouristblog.com/  It gave me an idea of the rides, best times for the rides, must dos, what we can skip, food options, transportation, crowds, weather and clothes too!
  • Based on the weather suggestions on this blog and checking the weather until the last day before packing, I packed hoodie for Sam and a jeans jacket for me that came in handy most evenings. Though we had to carry it with us all day long which hubby kept grumbling about but on 3 out of 6 days we did wear them. I regretted not carrying it on Day1 for Sam – because he was cold in the morning at 7am until the sun came out and after that I packed it every day. And a 50% hit rate is good according to me! Who knew it would rain and the weather would get muggy? What if it had rained and got windy? huh?
  • Having a boy has its advantages. One thing for sure that helped us get through most shows and rides – we did not have to use our fast pass or our time standing in line waiting to meet and greet the princesses. Though, I loved seeing all those pretty girls from age 3 to age 23 wearing tiaras and dressed as princesses standing in mile long queues to meet their favorite princess/fairy
  • As predicted, the camera bag became a burden at times. I have written here before how hubby and I are not too much into pictures and taking pictures on my phone is sufficient for me as memory. Just because we bought it, there were times when hubby experimented for a few minutes and then left it saying, “let me enjoy the atmosphere and take in the live show than taking all these pictures. You take what you want on the phone”. Or for some of those roller coasters, I was left holding both the heavy backpack AND the camera bag
  • I mentioned on Sam’s birthday post that I was quite disappointed with the cast members for not wishing him despite it showing up on their screens. We also had experience of some cast members who turned away their faces and continued walking, much like our Bengaluru autos, even when we said ‘excuse me’ and wanted some help
  • In contrast, I really give kudos to these characters who have to wear those suits all day long and stand and pose and act as if they are happy meeting thousands of people everyday. I wonder how hard it would be for them in peak summer! Every character we met greeted us so well, Minnie noted my Minnie Tshirt and did a little jig, Goofy and Pluto played with Sam. Donald saw Sam’s birthday Tshirt and asked if it was his birthday and made some fun of him. Chip and Dale were acting naughty.It was a joy to meet these characters
  • About the families we saw. So many teenage siblings taking care of the younger ones – both boys and girls. Feeding them, pushing their prams, helping with their princess dresses, teenage boys going on small rides for the younger sibling – it was so good to watch the families interact
  • Last but not the least – Sam enjoyed. That is the bottom line. We worried that he might not be able to relate to the rides or characters but it never bothered him. I think it was the right age – he matched all height requirements for the thrill rides, did the scary ones,dark ones and the rides meant for younger kids. He loved the anticipation of standing in line before the ride. He enjoyed the fantasy ones as much as he enjoyed the roller coasters. Every day was “the funnest day ever” and he even thanked us for taking him there. His grouse – he did not want to stop for food, he was not interested in any of the fireworks
  • I shamelessly told many cast members that it was his birthday making sure they wished him and that made him feel special. Hubby was “why are you acting like this? you never do such things” but for me, this was a milestone trip and I wanted Sam to have good memories of it, and as his mother I gave up on my ‘sharam’ and ‘haya’ and told as many people as I could so he could be wished 🙂
  • Finally, a couple of tips:
    • Go with a like minded group. Kids have more fun when they have company. We tried. Asked 3-4 families but everyone had their own reasons for not making it. It worked out for us because we planned the day as we liked it but there were times when we thought that even if there was 1 more kid Sam’s age, he could’ve had maybe a little more fun. He might not have gone on every ride with his Dad – which he did this time – there are some roller coaster pics where he is almost hiding – sticking to hubby and he only once mentioned that he wished at least his friends from the apartment could be there with him.
    • Do not shop in Disney – it is true that all prices are hiked up and you can get them all for much lesser on the Disney online site or even on Amazon
    • Finally, fastpass – make sure of what rides you want to do in advance and book them in quick succession preferably in the morning slot. Once you are done with all 3, you can block 3 more for the afternoon and so on. If you block something for much later in the night – the App will not allow you to select any more Fast passes.
    • No point in taking fastpass for any fireworks or night time spectaculars or shows. Seats are plenty so the line moves pretty quick. Only the Lion King was an exception to that rule for us-so do your research on the crowds as well.
    • Fastpass is a must if you enjoy thrill rides – more the thrill, longer the lines (Crazy people I say!).

Phew! Done. And I thought this would be a short, bullet post. Duh!

Day 23 – Day 6-Animal Kingdom

The last and final day of the trip. Hubby had reshuffled our fastpass for the Expedition Everest ride cancelling the safari. As per plan, we skipped breakfast and managed to have an early start and be there by the time the park opened at 8am. While hubby had the big bag, Sam and I walked ahead as we had no security bag check and walked with the sole purpose of getting into the earliest Kilimanjaro safari ride. Looked like everyone was headed the same way! It was like all humanity was walking as fast as possible in order to get to that ride. We managed to get into the line as the ride opened but hubby was still playing catch up. Once we went upto the bus, we moved to the side making way for the others to get in waiting for hubby to catch up. Thankfully, there were enough buses so we did not have to wait long. A nice ride along African Savannah to see lions,crocodiles, rhinoceros, zebra, giraffe, Okapis, gazelle and flamingos. I felt it got done too soon for all the expectation I had built up in my head. Then we headed toward the Asia section for the Expedition Everest ride which has the scariest biggest drop. My God! Just looking at it made my stomach drop! My looks to the hubby went unnoticed because he would not hear of not doing it. After all we had the fast pass for it! I just stood at the place from where I could see the drop all poised for the picture 🙂 After what seemed like ages, they came barreling down the slope – all screaming. Sam was excited as he came out. “Amma, there is one place where we go up and there are no tracks only after that! Then the whole thing goes backward amma…we cannot even see where it is going…it will be full dark, then we go up and we come down this beeeg drop… you would have been scared on this ride amma. Good you did not come…” Even hubby said it was one ride where you cannot anticipate anything which makes the ride more thrilling.

Our next fastpass was for the Kali river rapids – a water ride that said ‘you WILL get wet’. I had thought of keeping Sam’s poncho but then felt silly and dropped it. A big round raft and the ride is compared to water rafting. Only 1 place which has a big drop and how wet one gets depends on how the raft turns and where you are sitting in the raft at that moment. As luck would have it, Sam and I were sitting exactly where the raft went down – into the water and we were soaked. Where as hubby, who was sitting hardly 2 feet away only got a wee bit of spray. Talk about luck and not getting the poncho! I loved the ride but sadly Sam did not want to do it again – he does not like these water rides where he gets wet – he says he is not wearing swim clothes to get wet! Anyway, it was 11am by then and we were beginning to get hungry. We walked toward Dinoland for the Dinosaur ride. Again, thinking it was a roller coaster I dropped off and sat down in the restaurant while they were still preparing for lunch and checked if I could book fastpass for anything else. I booked fastpass for the Space Mountain ride that hubby wanted to do but I could not get any more fastpasses for that day for Lion King. I had asked the boys to join me in the restaurant which they did. After taking veggie burgers for lunch which were more than filling with fries and coffee and lemonade for Sam we walked out for more rides. There was one ride just like Dumbo the flying elephant that we all did and then we walked to see if we could get to the 1pm Lion King show. This seems to be the most popular show and we could not get in for the 1pm. The option was to either ditch it or wait for the next show at 2pm. We did. We staked out there for the next 1 hr making sure that we did not miss it. It was extravagant with acrobatics and lights and music. But sadly, I thought that it would be a stage show of the Lion King movie which it wasn’t.

We got out by 2:30 and the next Finding Nemo show was at 4pm. What to do until then? We saw Its tough to be a bug (4D) show under the Tree of Life, we danced a little to live music, went back to DinoRama  to do one more ride. Sam was adamant about some ride that hubby thought would be boring which had a line of 40mins wait time and we had no fastpass. Also, since we did not have any fast passes for Finding Nemo show we decided to go stand in the line. While Sam and hubby were arguing someone in the crew walked up to them, gave them 6 paper fastpasses, said “Do that ride” and walked away! Just like that! So, hubby had no choice but to do that ride. By the time that ride got done it was 3:45 and we had to go stand in line for Finding Nemo show. We decided to use those Fastpasses that someone gave us. While we gave it at the counter, an elderly gentleman who was manning the fastpass, looked at it and said “Don’t waste it on this, use it for something else” and returned all the 4 passes! We felt so lucky that day!

Now Finding Nemo was a great show. The lights, settings, acting – everything met expectation! Beautiful. I wouldn’t have minded giving the fastpass for this one. Anyway, by the time we finished this, it was 5pm and time for us to head towards Magic Kingdom for one last time.

It was a quick ride and by 5:45pm we were there Magic Kingdom. Now, I had to ride the monorail – didn’t I? Boat and bus were done, how could we miss the monorail? So we just sat in one that went around to the other resorts and came back to Magic Kingdom – a 10min ride to satisfy that urge of Monorail and also give us a glimpse of the 5* resorts. After that, we entered Magic Kingdom for one last time. The fastpasses that we had, were given at the front city hall in exchange for any other fast pass ride inside Magic Kingdom. Sam chose the Seven dwarfs mine ride again. He was thrilled that he could do that ride one more time without standing in line 😀 We had a fastpass for Space Mountain at 8:30pm. It was still 6:15pm. We decided we will do all the rides and shows that we had missed the other 2 times. So, we did Mickey’s Philharmagic,Monster Inc. laugh floor, had earlier blocked fast pass for journey of the little mermaid and in the end took the last fastpass for Winnie the Pooh. We squeezed in dinner at Pecos Bill again – we had liked their salad bar that offered salsa and guacamole and the 3 soft tacos with rice. We did not have the patience or time to go in search of any other place either. The other 2 rides that the boys had fastpass for – another round of Seven Dwarfs and Space Mountain also got done by 9pm. We were done, there weren’t any other show that was on our must-do list anyway. There were some like the Liberty boat ride we found waste of time or the country bear jamboree show because we could not relate to it, or the shooting arcade where we had no idea what we had to do… so these got skipped.

I stood watching the castle lights one last time and the Christmas tree and the happiness and joy surrounding us and that had enveloped us over the previous 6 days.  Leaving it was quite depressing. Back to the resort and packing and off to sleep by 11pm.

The next morning, we took the option of checkin at the resort itself and got our boarding passes as well, so all we had to do was get to security and on to the flight. We landed to a cold Chicago though thankfully it was not snowing. Sigh! Back to the biting cold and reality but the memories remain forever.

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Day 22 – Day 5 – Disney Springs

Finally we are here on day 5. We had only 5 day park hopper option which means we had exhausted 4 days and had just 1 more day left. 1 day for Animal Kingdom. Hubby was of the opinion that we should finish it and take the last day easy while I was of the opinion that there were no night time shows at Animal Kingdom so we could come back to the room early to pack for the next day so the last but one day we should do Disney Springs in the evening. Also, I knew that after so much activity and fun, if we did not do anything on the last day, I would be the first one to get depressed. Hubby, then threw in his idea – he wanted to go to Magic Kingdom one more time and finish that Space Mountain ride. He did not want to leave any ride not done! He knew it would be late if we went from Animal Kingdom to Magic Kingdom and we would get late for checkout the next day. I convinced him that I would finish packing in time and we should just relax and let Sam play in the pool at the resort that day. Poor boy had been asking since day1.

So, that is what we did – no parks on Day5. We had a late breakfast and then took Sam to the pool. Spent a good hour there and then got ready to get to Disney Springs by 2pm. I had made a note of Wolfgang Puck express for food but was not sure about what veggie we would get. Again, I did not want to settle for pizza or burger. By the time we walked around and figured our way to Wolfgang puck it was a good 1 hour and lunch time was almost coming to an end. Thankfully there were some veggie options. I don’t remember what we exactly took – only that we had ordered red velvet cake and Sam took his usual Cheese pizza which had such a thin crust that for a  change he finished the entire 4 slices! We then wandered around the lake (I realize as I write this,that every park has its own water body) taking in the streetmosphere. The place was full of life with live music, singing, shows, a small carousel, street lined with ice cream carts and children chatter. Of course, there was the World of Disney store, a Lego store as well. *small digression – I had promised Sam that if he behaved himself and got ready on time for school for 10days before the Christmas vacation began, I will get him a Lego in Disney – of his choice. He had more or less kept up his promise and had been reminding me from the time we got on the flight of my side of the bargain. So, I had to get him his Lego.  – End Digression* We walked in and he was so confused that he just ran around the whole store thinking what he wanted. Hubby and I tried helping him pick but he was not ready. He chose something so big that cost 159$ and we were not ready 😛 He finally decided on a Lego Ninjago which thankfully came within budget!

Seeing the World of Disney store, I wanted to again check for the snowglobe but more, I wanted to buy a princess dress for my niece in London whose birthday is in March. I went crazy picking up stuff. A nice dress and Minnie hairclips and a tiara and a wand and socks. I was imagining her dressed like that with heart in my eyes. Hubby helped me pick as well. My hands were full of stuff for the little princess while hubby said “How are you going to send all these?” I would have to ship them all. So, he came up with “Why don’t you buy them all online and get it shipped directly? Our suitcases do not have so much space also.” Again very practical but it did not satisfy the josh of the moment. Sadly, I dropped everything and walked out. The only thing I picked up as a memento is our usual fridge magnet 😦

It was around 6:45 by then and we found a bar on the water front. Hubby suggested we have a cocktail each (no driving!) and Sam a pink lemonade. While he placed the order, I went to use the rest room.I was still standing in line outside, it was horribly crowded, when the hubby calls up  “Hey! see see, your drone show is on. Quick, come and join us here, it looks beautiful”. I was in 2 minds, really, whether to leave the line or forget the drone show. Reluctantly, I left my place and ran out so I could watch the drone show on the water. Compared to all the other ‘spectaculars’ this was a short 5 mins lights hovering on the water kind of show. Still, something new to see. I went back to the restroom to see an even longer line.Sigh! What to do…nature calls…all that tea I had for lunch…I also had to make space for the cocktail 😛

So, I meandered back slowly to the bar where hubby and Sam had settled down comfortably on a couch listening to someone playing wonderful guitar. I joined them and the next 30mins or so was blissful. Nice waterfront, watching the crowd go by, live music that even Sam seemed to be enjoying. It was nearly 8pm when we  decided to head back to the bus stand and home…err. room.. We window shopped and walked around some more to reach the bus stop by 8:20 and back to the resort by 9pm. Another soup snack for dinner and off to bed with a nice buzz.

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