Sunday, December 9, 2007

Happy Thanksheaving!

Happy/Merry: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Years! With our inability to keep this thing up to date, we might as well get all of the major holiday greetings out there to keep the masses appeased. Okay, we're not waving the white flag just yet and will strive to blog the good fight.

The Thanksgiving trip was the first for the Ricks family that included travel to a state that isn't spelled I-D-A-H-O. Not to mention the first Thanksgiving in recent memory where nearly as much dinner came up after it went down. Gross? Yes, but we're getting ahead of ourselves. The three of us decided to make the drive by night to take advantage of Paisley's penchant for sleeping through the night. We got the car loaded up and left Vegas around 9:30 p.m. The drive was uneventful for the most part until we hit fog about an hour out of San Diego. Tim's mom had rented a house on Mission Beach for the week, so outside of the given directions, we didn't have much to go on. We found the street easy enough and finally were able to match the given access code with the correct garage after a couple of tries. Such is the futility of 3:30 a.m. Being the first ones to arrive, it didn't take us too long to stake our claim on one of the bedrooms and crawl into bed.

We eventually got out of bed the next morning (letting Paisley cuddle up to mom in our bed bought us a couple more hours) and walked down the boardwalk for breakfast then back to the house to wait for all of the others to arrive. By late afternoon, everyone had gotten in from Seattle, Salt Lake, Denver, and Moscow...Idaho. Paisley enjoyed meeting some of her cousins, especially Kennedy and Lucy who are a few months older and a month younger than her.

There were big plans for the week but it didn't take long for a little stomach bug to make its way through the house. The good news was that the effects only lasted about 24 hours; the bad news was that every morning seemed to bring about 2 or 3 more victims. Call it stubbornness, vitamins, and no Disneyland aspirations, but the three of us were able to avoid any of the symptoms.

We spent one day at Sea World and another day at the world famous San Diego Zoo. The day at Sea World started fairly warm but gradually got colder as the day progressed. We watched the jumping dolphins, the goofy sea lion show, and capped it off with the Shamu "Believe" which is really quite the production. Not exactly in a good way. Sure every show there comes with a fair amount of cheese, but this "Believe" thing goes above and beyond. It felt like church camp with an emphasis on camp. Was there a movement bringing into question the legitimacy of orcas? What really impressed us was this amazing pet show put on by a bunch of animal rescue graduates (mostly dogs and cats). They've managed to train cats! THIS show needs to be called "Believe." The highlight of Paisley's day was probably the beluga whales since they were so big and white and would swim right through her line of vision.

A few days later we checked out the terrestrial side of the animal kingdom at the zoo. DISCLAIMER: Under normal circumstances we tend to not be big fans of the caged animal scene but San Diego's got a pretty good reputation, so like most vacations, we thought we'd relax our morals a touch. We saw koala bears, panda bears, Asiatic black bears, and sun bears. Elephants, hippos, and Tim's absolute favorite: primates galore! Once again, Paisley seemed to enjoy the large pasty thing swimming right past her face (the hippos this time).

We decided to work up our turkey appetite by taking a walk (long enough to qualify as a hike) from the house to Trader Joes only to discover that it was closed for the holiday. Thanksgiving proper went on without much of a hitch despite the fact that it was Grandma Ricks' turn for illness. I'm pretty sure that we didn't see much of her all day but the turkey was tasty, potatoes perfectly mashed, some yummy cranberry stuffing, not to mention our sponsored appetizers.

The last family activity of the trip was trying to put together a picture on the beach with all the cousins. With three infants, it made us really appreciate those trained cats at Sea World. Half the family flew out on Friday, with the rest following on Saturday morning. We were the last to leave and being the only ones that didn't have to worry about luggage restrictions, we bought a cooler and packed up all the leftovers to take with us. It was like Christmas, a month early! It was a great Thanksgiving and it was fun to see all of the family and let everyone meet Paisley, even though we had to keep the sickies at safe distance.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


Hopefully Tim won't mind me posting this because I couldn't resist - it was just too funny... Last Sunday at church Tim was making his way through the halls after class when he heard a woman next to him laugh and say to her 3 year old "No honey, that isn't Jesus." And I just thought my daughter was extra spiritual always smiling at pictures of Jesus.

(picture of Tim circa 2004)