Tuesday, June 29, 2010

2 years ago, I lost my mom.

Here we are: 2 years.  I keep thinking about this day 2 years ago.  If you could only go back in time....

Two years makes it sound like something you're over.  But anyone going through it knows that's not true.  I still almost call, I still see something and think, "Wait until I tell Mom!"  Two years sounds like a long time; it's not.

As a happy thing, here's a picture of my Dad and Mom on a date.  We found this in a box of things Mom saved. They had this done in a photobooth.  Look how young and happy they are.

Mom and Daddy - photobooth


If you could only go back in time, I'd warn them about so much.... if I could get them to listen.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Rose and Crown Pub waterfront at sunset

Eating creme brulee, enjoying a cool breeze, and the view.

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Epcot! Yay!


Epcot! Yay!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

C'mon, Mickey! Let's have a Disney day!

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Hanging at Fort Wilderness

John's back is no better, so he's taking the morning off and asked that I stay too. It's such a lousy thing that he's hurt and losing good vacation time. It's our last day too.  But the dogs are happy. :)

We're supposed to meet a couple friends at Epcot for lunch at 2; hopefully he can come.

I so don't want to go home tomorrow.

Friday, June 25, 2010

WISHES on webcam live from Magic Kingdom

Check it out!

Webcam of Electric Light Parade LIVE ay Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World

Parade starts in a couple minutes!  Webcam is now live!

Webcam chat at Ustream

Gingerbread Castle at Fort Wilderness site!

Gingerbread Castle at Fort Wilderness site!

They even put Snow White and the Dwarves!

Beautiful day!


Beautiful day!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

I'm headed back to Fort Wilderness to be with John. I want him to go to the hot tub to help his back. I only did the attractions at Studios that he doesn't like or did already: One Man's Dream, Tower of Terror (jumped way up in the queue as a single rider) and Rockin' Roller Coaster (it broke down right after; not my fault!). But it so stinks that he's not here.

Rockin' Roller Coaster


Rockin' Roller Coaster, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Rode it, loved it, rock on!

Rode Tower of Terror!


Rode Tower of Terror!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

A teenager next to me kept screaming deliberately any second it was dark to freak people. :)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Waiting to find Nemo


Waiting to find Nemo, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Sitting in the air conditioning, planning a trip to Downtown, an not at work. Life is good. (John thought of the title. This is his byline.)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Toy story Mania!


Toy story Mania!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

I won!

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Webcam kive!

around Walt Disney World!

Guess who's auditioning for American Idol?!

Johnny Black!

Mickey cookie!


Mickey cookie!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Cynthia at Starring Rolls gave me this cookie! She said I didn't even have to share!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Broadcasting Illuminations in Epcot

Streaming .TV shows by Ustream

Would people like us to broadcast Epcot Illuminations tonight on the webcam?

We're planning to stay here in France because we have such good seats. Would you like me to broadcast Illuminations tonight? Just reply in comments (if you haven't on Facebook).

Webcam in the France Pavilion, Epcot

You can see passersby while we enjoy the breeze.

Grand Marnier Slushie


Grand Marnier Slushie, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

I'm joining our friends!

Our friends are drinking around The World (Epcot)

The country pavilions check off their shirts when they have a drink there.

Margarita in Mexico


Margarita in Mexico, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Webcamin Soarin'!

At least I will try. May not have enough cord to cam from netbook under seat or lose signal. We'll see and we'll try!

You'll have to put up with me in the queue first, and then, cross your fingers!

American Adventure


American Adventure, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

beautiful day

Guess where we are!


Guess where we are!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

HINT: it begins with an E

downsized_0622001024.jpg


downsized_0622001024.jpg, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Hint: it

Monday, June 21, 2010

Great first day!

I had a blast at the luau breakfast! I got a fantastic souvenir when a flower fell off of Stitch's lei! And despite what John says, I didn't steal it and Security isn't looking for me!

We got our golf cart, which only, so far, John's gotten to drive.  It's a speedy one too!

At Magic Kingdom, I danced behind the brass band as I went around to get pictures with the castle in the shot, and got caught at it by John and the band!  And when I danced more as I saw John recording it, a couple guys cheered me on with "Go, white girl! Go, white girl!"

I met Elizabeth at the Main Street Cinema who is a fellow Emperor's Groove fan!  I played with the webcam, thought we got Laugh Floor fast passes but they were for Buzz, so I proceeded to whoop John's butt!  We saw Hall of Presidents where John told a lot of bad jokes, and the river boat where we got nice photos.

At Animal Kingdom, we rode Dinosaur, Primeval Whirl - or as John calls it "The Puker", and saw a girl with blinking lights on her teeth.  We were with people experiencing Dinosaur and Tough to be a Bug for the first time which is fantastic to watch.

John hit the wall, so we rescued the dogs from the kennel and came back to relax.  I know I'm forgetting so much!  But when I remember, I'll update this.

Meanwhile, tomorrow is Epcot!

Dinosaur!


Dinosaur!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

I like to sit in the back in the middle seat. I don't hold on and let the seat belt be the only thing keeping me in. It makes one wild ride!

Webcam live of Cinderella Castle!

If you missed the Live broadcast, here's the video:

Cinderella Castle!


Cinderella Castle!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Our view from lunch table.

Mickey ears!


Mickey ears!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Happy Birthday ears!

Webcam going on the ferry into Magic Kingdom!

Get ready! I'm going to see if I can pull this off! We're parking soon and then we'll see.

Erin and Mickey


Erin and Mickey, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

'Ohanas Spirit of Islands Breakfast

Ohana Luaua breakfast!


Ohana Luaua breakfast!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Breakfast with Stitch for my birthday!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

We're here!

Site 801! We can hear the fireworks over in the Magic Kingdom as we watch the Must Do on channel 18 with Stacey.

I have the Disney Mobile Magic on my cell phone; I forgot I set up our trip and so I was surprised when it sent me a message saying I arrived today! It gave the weather forecast and today's events. Can't wait to try it in the parks!

Plus, since it's my birthday, they had a birthday button, card, and a Celebration discount for PhotoPass! Oh yeah!

And it just hit me: tomorrow is Monday and we're not at work. Whoo hoo!

Have a good night!

Webcam live showing us going into Disney world!

If you missed it, here's the video:


Driving into Walt Disney World, up Main Gate and through the Magic Kingdom gateway into Fort Wilderness. My husband turns the camera into the car a couple times, so happy that we're here that he can't sit still.

Thank you for all the birthday wishes!

What a great surprise to check email and text messages and see so many people wishing me a happy birthday!

Smiley from millan.net

We just remembered we could check-in online, so I just fired up the laptop to take care of that. Now we can just get our key cards and sail in faster.  Man, I love the Internet!

We just went past the exit for Waycross, Georgia where we visited Teresa and her husband years ago and ended up being the first Yankees some of the people ever saw.  John thought we should go back and say hi to all those friends; they must miss us.

Just found out we're 22 miles to the Florida border! Oh yeah! Smiley from millan.net
(Those are the African plastic horns from the World Cup games.)

Whose line is it anyway?!


Whose line is it anyway?!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

Rico loves it!

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I thought I was the one taking a nap.

Apparently I was wrong. Elphie even took the Mickey pillow!

On the road again!

Actually, we've been on the road for a little while; we just stopped for gas and walked the dogs.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads!  For his father's day, the dogs didn't bark all night at every person going by at the hotel.  Only a couple of them. ;)

We brilliantly didn't charge  the camcorder before we left and equally brilliantly (more out of sleepiness) didn't charge it last night at the hotel.  So we'll just have to use our Imagination when remembering the whole trip down.... and use the webcam when we go into WDW!  I'm not missing that!

But right now, John's doing well driving so I'm going to take a nap and then drive later.

I never sausage a place!


I never sausage a place!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

We just had breakfast so we're not stopping at South of the Border. Rico will have to wait for his first visit on the way back.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

30 miles to DC!

We're leaving Maryland rest area a Area everyone got a break and John got an attitude about stopping! At least, until he decided he needed to stop too. ;')

We're on our way!


We're on our way!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

We're on the road with a lapful of dogs!

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We're going to Disney World!


We're going to Disney World!, originally uploaded by eblackwell.

We got Mickey - they GOTTA let us in!

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Monday, June 14, 2010

All Ears menus updated!

We just had another big update in the menus section! Thank you to Deb Koma and other team members for getting menus, and a big huge thank you to our readers! Jennifer, Lisa, Tracy, Valerie, and Karen: thank you so much for all the photos and information! And if I forgot anyone, please know I send you an equal amount of pixie dust filled thank yous

Sunday, June 13, 2010

What a weekend.

A lot of ups and downs. Met 2 good friends for breakfast yesterday and then spent the afternoon with 2 of my sisters, plus my nephew and his family. Saw friends in a play last night and I leave on vacation in a week.

All good things.

I had two -- eye openers or milestones. I was talking to John about my mom; we're getting close to the 2nd anniversary of losing her. I thought out loud about if it was possible to go back in time, what I'd say to my mom and dad before they got married. Then I joked that maybe I'd just go find John at 19 and jump his bones. He answered, why would he at 19 want a woman of my age.

My age has been really surreal the last few years. It doesn't feel connected to me at all; it's like if I said I was 98. It's just nothing to do with me. But when I thought about what John said and took a look at myself in the mirror, really looked at myself, I realized he's right. I'm nothing for the young; I got caught up into being another middle aged woman who can't face what she is and tries to be what's she not.

Today, I was going to clean and start getting ready for the vacation, maybe put a few shirts into the camper. (I'm also now trying to figure out if the clothes are packed are too young. I'm glad I didn't get new shorts after all.) I got a call from my friend Becky. I knew they were moving to Texas and I hate the thought of not seeing them. Well, here they're moving in a couple days! My only chance to really spend time with little Sophia again was today.

Sophia and me, best budsI'm so upset. I love that kid. She's made me her "Auntie Erin" and I really looked forward to watching her grow up. I've known her since she was a few weeks old when she was getting over colic and I rocked her to sleep, humming the lullaby my family sang to me, and whispering to her. Now I won't see her grow up, maybe not see her face light up when she sees me or watch her run to me with arms outstretched calling my name.

Of course we say we'll get together again.  I hope we will, but I remember great friends of my parents who were like an aunt and uncle to me: Uncle Paul and Aunt Kittie.  Wonderful people; everyone said they'd stay close when we moved to South Jersey.  I haven't seen them since I was 7 or 8.  So...



So Sophia and I went to the movies, then to Build a Bear where I got her a zsu-zsu pet, a hamster. I gave her change to throw into the fountain and make wishes, and she asked me could we do this again the next time we came there. She forgot that she was moving. I choked up a few times, but didn't let her see it.

We road in "the magic car", my convertible as she calls it, and listened to the Disney World and Disneyland monorail spiels, PeopleMover spiels, and Phineas & Ferb CDs: all her favorites.  We went home, watched Lion King, had a pillow fight, shared a Wendy's Frosty, and then I spent time with Becky and Adam.  We're supposed to have lunch together on Wed.

I know the people who love giving talks about "you're miserable only if you think you are" will say I shouldn't be sad to lose them, but give thanks I had them in my life at all.  I hate it when people say things like that.  Smiley from millan.net

Friday, June 11, 2010

Watch the tram car, please!

I made time to do something important: make a ringtone that really sounds like the Wildwood tram car.

Listen to the Watch the tram car, please ringtone!


Thanks! I do feel pretty proud!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Monday, June 7, 2010

Bought myself a birthday present!

I posted these little guys last year, and this year, they will be mine!


I got the smaller ones; yeah, I know but they're affordable and fun!  I can take them camping with us to put in our site.  In fact, I ordered them now so we can have them for my birthday trip.  But I'll bring them to work: we plan to use them for a variety of photos.  Alien bandits stealing someone's lunch; alien bandits stealing company mascot beanies....

I can't wait for them to arrive!

We found this one too which my friends Donna and Tootie instantly wanted: the alien wine bottle holder.
You can see a lot more of the great Gnomes-Be-Gone series by artist Fred Conlon  at their home page, at amazon.com, and at Perpetual Kid.com where they advise you to "entertain your inner child".  Are they calling out to me or what?