Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Going Dutch

Charlotte and I had been waiting all summer, and last weekend we finally were able to go to Dutch Wonderland!!  Aunt Amy, Uncle Darin, Drew and Reed went with us, and we had so much fun.  It was a beautiful day to have a Cousin Fun Day :)

I was a little tentative about some of the rides.  I didn't want to go on this airplane ride, but Charlotte convinced me that it would be fun.  She was right!!

The water ride was one of my favorites - I rode with Aunt Amy, Uncle Darin, Drew and Reed.  Uncle Darin told us to yell when we went through the tunnel, and I wasn't even scared when we flew down the big hill!

Before lunch, we saw The Frog Prince diving show.  It was so funny!  I loved watching the frogs jump off of the diving boards.

Charlotte, of course, loved the show and wanted to have her photo taken with the princess when it was finished.

This was Reed's dream ride - he got to drive the bulldozer!  He showed me how to drive it properly - he's an expert on construction equipment!

Speaking of driving, Charlotte must have learned great driving skills from Daddy - she took the wheel on The Turnpike ride and never slowed down!

Aren't we a cute Dutch family?  ;)   We were sad that Daddy couldn't be with us, but we know he would have had a fun day, too.

I told Mommy that the carousel was my favorite ride of the day.

Drew and Charlotte flew down the big slide! 

Introducing the prince and princess of Dutch Wonderland!!

The Flying Trapeze was Charlotte's favorite ride - she looked like she was flying through the air!

I'm glad that Mommy took this photo at the beginning of the ride - a few seconds after she snapped this, the ride whipped us around the corner and I voiced my displeasure quite loudly...

Drew and Charlotte had fun being riding buddies together all day.  They didn't seem to mind being whipped around!

The lines weren't too long, but even when we had a wait, we were having so much fun that we didn't mind!

One of my favorite parts of the day was when we woke up Uncle Darin - he was trying to sneak in a little snooze on the boat, but Charlotte and I yelled at him and woke him up!

It was SUCH a fun day.  I keep thanking Mommy for taking me to "Wonderwaand."  I can't wait to go back!


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Claire Bear Ballerina

The day I've been waiting for my whole life has finally arrived!!  I have been going to Encore Dance Studio my entire life to watch my sister take her classes.  I've been wanting to go to my own class for as long as I can remember, and this year I am old enough to start a class!

Charlotte has class the same night that I do.  She started jazz for the first time tonight, and she was as (almost) as excited as I was to start dancing. 

I start a few minutes before Charlotte does, so she stood outside of my classroom and gave me a few pointers on how to be a good ballet student.

Finally, my wonderful new teacher, Miss Allyson, came out into the hallway and welcomed all of us into the studio. 

I immediately sat down on a star and waited for class to begin!  I could not have been more excited!!

Mommy said that Charlotte stood outside of my studio and watched me until she had to go to her own studio.  Charlotte was very proud of me, and she told Mommy that I was doing a really good job and performing all the dance moves beautifully. 

It looks like Mommy and Daddy have TWO ballerinas in the family now!!

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Star Spangled Visit

This year we had some special visitors come to spend the 4th of July holiday with us.  Mommy and Daddy's friends Drew and Heidi drove  from Ohio with their son, Jonas, and their daughter, Marley.  They arrived on Sunday, just in time to attend the Long's Park fireworks with us.  We were all decked out in our finest USA gear and we were SO excited for the canons and the fireworks!

 This is Marley, the "most adorablest baby" ever :)

 Mommy and Daddy were excited for the fireworks, too!

This was my first fireworks show - it took me about ten minutes to get used to the loud booms.  I was not a happy girl at the beginning, but I sat with Daddy for a while for some comfort and eventually fell in love with fireworks.

The next day we decided to show Jonas and Marley around Lititz.  We went to the Sturgis Pretzel Bakery, the first commercial preztel bakery in US.   This pretzel is bigger than we are!

We took a tour of the bakery, which started with a lesson on twisting pretzels!  First, we had to roll out the dough.

Then, after a few swift movements, we twisted our very own pretzel!

When we were finished, we received an "Official Pretzel Twister" certificate.

The next part of the tour was seeing the actual bakery that was built in 1861.   We pretended that we were pushing the pretzels into the oven - it was hard work!

We continued our food tour with a stop at Wilbur Chocolate.  We looked around the chocolate museum and bought some chocolate goodies.  While we were there, Heidi discovered the yummy world of Wilbur Buds (like Hershey's Kisses).  We think she likes them!  :)

We had to go home so that I could take a nap and get a break from the heat.  When we left, Heidi, Drew, Jonas and Marley enjoyed some play time at our favorite park, Lititz Springs, and made a stop at Cafe Chocolate.

Later that evening, we decided that Jonas and Marley had to try Oregon Dairy ice cream and play at the dairy playground.  I think everyone enjoyed their ice cream on this hot, hot evening!

 On Tuesday, Heidi, Drew, Jonas and Marley continued their Lancaster County tour with a trip to Dutch Wonderland.  Jonas tried out a lot of rides and splashed around Duke's Lagoon.
On the 4th of July, we decided to head to Kitchen Kettle Village for a buggy ride, lunch and some shopping.  We were SO excited for the buggy ride.  Jonas and I sat up front next to our wonderful driver, Elsie.

  This was our view :)  Sarge and Jack did a great job pulling our buggy. 

Marley loved the horses!  She got to ride up front with Elsie for a little while, too.

Our ride included a stop at an Amish drive-thru!   A lovely Amish woman had lots of baked goods and drinks available at her farm.  We bought some delicious zucchini bread and some refreshing homemade root beer and lemonade.  I couldn't stop drinking the root beer - it was SO good!

We love buggy rides!

After the buggy ride, we stopped at a cafe for lunch and met Uncle Sam.  Mommy was shocked that neither Charlotte nor I were scared of him.  Yummie the Gingerbread Man...that's another story...

After a yummy lunch, we did some shopping at the Jam and Relish Shop, the toy shop and our neighbor's pottery shop.  Everyone enjoyed the trip to Kitchen Kettle Village!

After Kitchen Kettle, we grilled some burgers for our 4th of July cook-out.  The mommies said we had to work for our dinner, so Jonas, Charlotte and I shucked the corn :)

When dinner was finished, it was still REALLY hot, so we got out the water bombs, the water guns and the hose to cool down a bit.

The daddies decided to skip the water and cool off with a few beverages and some good conversation :)

After the water battles, we got baths and then came outside to end the holiday with some sparklers and some snaps.  This was my very first sparkler.  I was a little nervous at first, but it didn't take long before I was dancing around with my sparkler just like Sissy and Jonas!

The snaps were really fun, too.  Somehow I managed to avoid throwing them on anyone else.

The evening came to a close with a lightning bug hunt.  Isn't this one cute?

We had so much fun celebrating the holiday with Heidi, Drew, Jonas and Marley.  We were happy that they made the long drive out here to visit!!

Happy 4th of July, everyone!!