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Easter

Another holiday without my dad.  I never think it will be as hard as it ends up being.  I'm an emotional wreck but at least I can usually get out of it eventually to enjoy the day.  This was a particular meaningful holiday since we celebrate Jesus Christ's resurrection so that we can ALL be resurrected some day.  So I can see my dad again.  It's hard to not have him here but at least I know that we can see him again.

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We started out our Easter with a Easter FHE with the missionaries.  We made Resurrection Rolls like we did last year.  But I forgot to take any pictures.  

Then we had an Easter egg hunt for our ward park day.  

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I asked the kids what their favorite part of the egg hunt was.  Corbin said, 'Finding the eggs."  Cason said, "Eating the treats inside the eggs."  That sounds about right for each kid.  Then Cason asked me what my favorite part was.  I told them watching my kids have fun.  He was very confused about that.  Shouldn't I also like to eat the treats and find the eggs?  

Easter Sunday was a little rushed and chaotic.  Getting three kids ready (plus ourselves), doing the whole Easter basket thing, taking pictures in Easter clothes and eating breakfast all before 8:45am was pushing it.  

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We were late for church for the first time in a very long time.  Oops!  (I also have to say, my late is probably not someone else's late since we were still there for opening hymn and prayer.  We walked in during announcements.)

It was a good Easter Sunday.  I felt the spirit which is always a benefit for attending church.  We came home and took a few more Easter pictures.

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We hosted my family for dinner but I didn't get one picture of it.  We also had an Easter egg hunt for the kids outside after dinner.

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I love Easter and my family!

Baseball Season Has Begun!

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Corbin has officially started his second year of basbeball.  He is still extremely cute in his uniform, but is not the smallest kid on the team anymore.  He has a friend on his team this year so that makes it all the more fun!

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I'm sure there will be many more baseball pictures to share!

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Must Be So Fun To Have Older Siblings

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St. Patrick's Day

Since St. Patrick's Day was Sunday this year, I decided to have fun meal to celebrate it.  I makde Corned Beef Cabbage.  Since I'm not a big fan of boiled cabbage, I decided to do a Kale and Cabbage salad instead.  The rest of the meal was all green!  The boys thought it was pretty fun.  Corbin liked the green drink and green cookies.  Cason liked the green cookies.  I tried to get Kinsley to eat green grapes, but she was in her not eating hardly anything phase.

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Kinsley 9 Months

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Our beautiful girl is 9 months old today.  She's sweet and fun and adorable and we LOVE her pieces.  

Kinsley:

-is a mama's girl.  She loves her mom and wants to be around me.  She will go to other people easily but when she is sad she wants me.  She snuggles and hugs and kisses me easily.  I LOVE it!
-is so easy going.  She can be dragged all around, get few naps, and still be the sweetest.  When she is sick, teething or in pain this is a different story.  But can you really blame her?
-STILL doesn't crawl.  She scoots.  Right now she's a really slow scooter but that is how she generally gets from place to place.  
-seems to want to walk.  She gets super happy when we hold her hands and help her walk around.  Her lack of crawling will probably prevent her from walking too soon though.
-is babling like crazy.  Lots of "dada".  A little "mama".  She also says "baba", "bite", "bike" but not to mean anything. She shakes her head "no" when she doesn't want something though.
-is still pretty little but she is the cutest.  She is only 15 lbs 1 oz (under 5th percentile) and 26 3/4 inches tall (20th percentile).  We will have to go get her checked out again in 6 weeks.  In the meantime, we will have to feed her lots of butter, oil, fatty meats and cheese, etc.  I hope it will work since our sweet little girl is very picky and doesn't want to eat a lot of what I give her.
-likes her Minnie Mouse she got from Disneyland.  She hugs it and squeezes it.  
-waves sometimes. And also gives high fives.  It's the cutest thing ever!
-has a smile that will melt anyones heart.  

She's our precious little girl that we can't get enough of!  

Arizona

We left our "hotel" on Saturday morning to start our trip to Arizona.  It was bittersweet to leave Disneyland but we still had more fun to be had in Arizona.  The boys, of course, really liked Disneyland.  But they also had a blast in Arizona!  

When I was looking at the map, I saw we would be driving right next to the Joshua Tree National Park.  I have always wanted to go so we decided to stop.  We probably went half an hour out of our way and still didn't get to see any Joshua Trees but at least a got to take a break.  

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We got back on the road and eventually reached some snow on our way up to Connor's grandparents house.  Snow in Arizona in March?  The kids haven't been in snow much so they weren't really sure what to do in it.  It probably didn't help that they were in crocs.

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My husband was (kind of) patient with my freak out about all the curves and slick roads.

We got to Connor's grandparents house just in time for a quick visit and then bed.  We woke up and were able to go to chuch with them.  We got a picture of Kinsley and Grandma Levie.  (Grandma Levie's name is Violet, so Kinsley's name sake.)

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The boys LOVED being at Grandma and Grandpa Levie's.  There was a huge house to run around and explore.  There were new toys to play with and they just had a great time.  There was a kids ATV that the boys tried out.  Cason was a little more brave than Corbin.  (I honestly think that I'm going to be in the ER more with Cason who is brave and daring, than my very cautious Corbin.)

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That night Kinsley screamed a blood curdling scream every time I tried to put her down for bed.  So I just held her while we visited and eventually she fell asleep in my arms.

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In the morning, we got ready to head to our first Giants spring training game and to leave Prescott.

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We stopped and ate at Arby's on the way and I am not kidding but we seriously lowered the average age by walking in.  Every single person in there was over 60.  It was pretty funny.

We got to the stadium and even though it was only in the high 70's, it felt very hot.  But we all made it through without a sunburn and Kinsley even took a nap in her sun tent.  We decided it would be easier on the kids to sit on the grassy field than an actual seat in the stadium.  Also the grass field tickets were cheaper too!

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Connor and I thought this was one of the best parts.  Getting to put our bare feet in the cool grass.

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I am not going to lie.  The boys ate an extremely high amount of cotton candy while on this trip.

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Getting out of the city where this game was located was miserable.  The traffic was so bad and it was all because of waiting at lights.  Connor and I have never been so frustrated in our lives.  

We went and met up with a friend of Connor's and ate Cafe Rio, BUT I didn't get one picture.  Very sad.  They were so nice to host us since she was just a couple days from her due date!  

The next day, our game wasn't until the evening so we met up with some more of Connor's family and went to the Zoo.  It was a really neat zoo.  You could even hand feed some giraffe's.

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It was so great to get see some of Connor's extended family that we rarely get to see!  I wish we could see them more often!

We were given the advice to get to the game that night 2 hours early so that's what we did.  We did get a pretty good spot but it wasn't as crazy as they person made it out to be.  On our walk by the stadium to the front, we saw some people peering in a side fence so we decided to check it out.

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I know you can't really tell but it is Zito, Cain, and Bochy.  Corbin and Cason kept asking loudly what we were lookng at and we were trying to quietly tell them so not to draw attention.  I was laughing and taking this pic when Connor told me to be quiet because they kept looking over there.  Ooops!

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This was such a beautiful night, just absolutely perfect weather!

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They couldn't sell bottles with lids, so we made do with Holly's boots as cup holders.

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These noodles we yummy!!

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We had so much fun!  We want to go back and do this again sometime!

The next day we haead back to Soutern Califonia to stay the night so we could break up the 12 hour drive.  And we finally had time to use the pool.  The boys loved it.  I think Kinsley did too.

When we first got to the pool there was a dad with his son.  Our kids were playing on the pool steps right next to Connor while I was getting some pictures of Kinsley with dad.  All the sudden I look over and this other dad is pulling Cason out from under the water.  Both Connor and I wrere oblivious that he even went in.  Thanks to that guy!  We will try to be better at watching our kids next time.

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We went to Cafe Rio again this night.  We had to get all that goodness in while we could!

This is how I found the boys in their bed that night.  So sweet!

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After 10 days of being on the road, we were finally home!!! We had a great time but it's always nice to be back home!

Disneyland

We went on a two part trip as a family and our first leg was Disneyland.  The kids were amazing and had so much fun. We did too!

The boys were just a little excited before the trip even started!

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Connor thought all these windmills were pretty cool.

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Our kids did so well all the hours that were spent in the car.  But they certianily were happy when we were finally out!

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We rented a townhouse for the time were going to be there.  It was right next to Disneyland so it was the perfect location for us.  And the fact that we had all the separate spaces really made it that much nicer.  The boys room had bunk beds just like at home.  We were only there a couple minutes before they made a mess in there.

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Since we got there in the evening, we just went to Downtown Disney and had dinner.  It was pretty cold but the kids (and us) were still excited!

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The next morning we had made resercations to go to a character breakfast.  The kids just loved it so much on the cruise that we thought it would be worth it.  

We have to get this famous Disneyland pic right?

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I guess I had never been to Disneyland just as it is opening so it was interesting to have to wait behind ropes.

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The breakfast was pretty great.  I was surprised to see how many different characters there were and we got to see them a lot.  The buffet was delicious and it was over crowded with people so that was nice too.  

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We felt bad for this cat guy.  We couldn't remember where he was from and it was obvious he wasn't a favorite character of any kids, so we encouraged our boys to hug him even though they didn't know who he was.  Can anyone tell us?

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One of my favorite parts was when Tigger came over.  Tigger came over to Kinsley and was teasing her by taking out her binky.  Instead of freaking out that this bisg strange character was stealing her binky, she just smiled and giggled. It was so cute!

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Also, the night before I read that you can certain things to the charcters and they will react to what you say.  One of them was for Captain Hook and it was "Where's Smee?"  Well, the first thing Corbin said when he saw Captain Hook was "Where's Smee?"  all on his own.  Captain Hook did use his hands to explain it.  I didn't get a video, but it was cute anyway.

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We thought this was one of the best things.  Our kids are just at the perfect age to think these characters are REALLY real and not to be scared of them!  It was great!

This is how Kinsley got most of her naps this week.

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The boys thought the castle was cool, but all they wanted to do was go inside it and climb up to the top.  As far as I know that isn't possible so they were a little disappointed.

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We went to Toon Town and put the kids in this fire truck.  We thought it was pretty hilarious that Kinsley was pushing her way through the boys to reach the steering wheel too.  She's not going to let a little thing like being 14 pounds stop her from getting in the action too. 

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We went back to the "hotel" for naps and then went back after an early dinner.  Of course the boys needed some cotton candy.  The first of a TON they ate this trip.

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We saw Mickey as we were walking in with no line so we had to stop and say hello.  The boys were sad they didn't see him at the breakfast.

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As we were walking back, Connor's parents met us.  The boys were so excited they could barely contain themselves.

So, we had one Magic Morning with the tickets we got.  We decided to use them this day and go to California Adventure.  We didn't realize that California doesn't have Magic Morning but Magic Hour.  There was already a ton of people lining up for the normal let in time at California Adventure so we just stayed there and waited for that hour.  

There was one funny story from waiting in the line.  There was a family behind us from Canada.  We got to talking to them and we were saying where we were from.  The mom of their group when finding out where we live says, "Oh yeah, you all have a strong American accent."  A strong American accent?  To Canadians?  I honestly can't tell much difference in Americans accents from Canadians except for the occasional "aboot" and "eh".  We thought it was pretty funny that we were told that.  

So we get into California Adventure finally and Connor runs with Kinsley to the Radiator Springs Racer fast pass line. He waited about 45 minutes in that line.  Does any one else think it's extrememly ridiculous to wait in a line to get a ticket to wait in another line?  It was nice that all of us didn't have to wait in line but we still had to wait because we still weren't allowed to get in the park yet.  

As soon as we were allowed in, we rushed over to A Bugs Life land.  The boys had really been into A Bugs Life lately and so they were so excited!  We found Flik and got in line to meet him.  Connor found us just as we were taking pictures with him so he got in too!

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Next we went on the Heimlich train.  They had seen pictures of this online that I had shown them before our trip so this was the most anticipated ride.  It did not disappoint.

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Next we went to Cars Land.  It was awesome!  Corbin got to go on the Radiator Springs Racer two times becuase of the switch pass.  

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I think the picture they take is better if you are an adult.  Obviously both kids aren't that visible.  There was a part that went really fast and Corbin was a little unsure about it at first but in the end he loved it!

I really liked Cars Land.  It was so cute and really well done.  Having the street look exactly like the movie.  I thought it was fun.  I also liked how the Cars drove down the street and as far as anyone could tell each car was driving on it's own.  

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We went back for naps but Kinsley didn't make it.  She fell asleep on me on the way back.  I was worried since she usually sleeps really short when she is in my arms, but she probably slept for about an hour that way.

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When she woke up she was happy!

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We went back to California Adventure that evening to go to the World of Color and to do a couple other rides.  We finally went on Toy Story Mania.  This ride at DisneyWorld always had such a long line that we never waited.  This time it was shorter.  The boys loved it!

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Then the boys had to do the carousel.

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The World of Color was fun.  I'm wish there was a better way to do it.  Getting a fast pass and then having to sit there to stake out a spot not the greatest.  But Shauna was nice enough to stay with a sleeping Kinsley and do that so we could take the boys on rides.

We got back to the "hotel" late and all went right to sleep.

The next morning we could use our Magic Morning so we got up early again.  Jon and Shauna couldn't come at the same time so Connor and I got to take just the boys while they stayed with a Kinsley for her nap.  

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I waited in line for Peter Pan while Connor took the bos around.  I spent the majority of our Magic Morning in line for that ride but the boys LOVED it, so it was worth it.

Even though they had already eaten breakfast they were hungry again.

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Kinsley was happy to see me when they got there.

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The boys also really liked the Finding Nemo Submarine.  Connor and I didn't like it that much but for some reason the boys enjoyed it.

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One of Corbin's favorite rides was the Pirates of Carribean.  

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We did do the Haunted Mansion which may have been a little too scary for them.  They weren't crying or upset but didn't seem to like it all that much.

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Later that night, Connor and I went to pick up Holly from the airport.  We stopped and ate at Cafe Rio since we hardly ever get to eat there.  Crazy story while we were there.  I went to get us a table while Connor was waiting in line.  I saw a man get up from the table where he was having dinner with his teenage daughter.  He started covering his mouth and it looked like he was going to throw up so I turned away because I didn't want to see it and then have it ruin my dinner.  I noticed the daughter looked scared.  Well then I hear what I thought was throwing up in the garbage can.  Connor came over and told me that the man had actually been choking and came up to one of the employees (later we found out he was the manager) and the employee performed the heimlich and then everything was fine.  The guy went back to his dinner and the worker went back to work.  It was so strange and scary.  


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LAX airport had these big colored tube things that changed colors every so often.  Interesting and sort of pretty.

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We waited to dress Kinsley in her Minnie Mouse outfit so that Holly would get to see her cuteness.  I think she was happy about that.  And Kinsley was so ADORABLE, if I do say so myself!

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Holly and Connor FORCED me to go on the Tower of Terror.  I've been on it several times.  I like rollercoasters, but I'm not super into dropping rides.  But I went anyway.  I think I worked myself up so much about it that it actually wasn't as bad as I thought.  Although this picture tells a different story.

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There will be a part 2 to this story coming up.

THe boys got to see Jake!  Which was great since they both had on their Jake and the Neverland shirts on.

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They also met Sully.  He was HUGE!  I thought Cason, at the very least, might be scared of him.  But he wasn't.  They both hug every character they see and Sully was no different.  I wish I had gotten a video but they ran up and Sully reached down and hugged them both right back.  So cute!

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Cason putting his arms up on one of the rides.

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So it was getting cold and windy and started looking like it was going to rain.  We went into this Imaganieer studio that was pretty neat.

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Since the rain was starting to come we decided to go eat in Downtown Disney at ESPN Zone.  It started POURING as soon as we walked in the door.  It ended up being a nice break and a good meal.  It stopped raining by the time we left too.

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Another funny story.  When Buzz was leaving and Woody was coming, Buzz had to walk right by Holly.  As he was walking by he was chekcing her out and then stopped behind her to look at her more.  I caught it on camera.

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Later that night, Jon and Shauna were nice to watch the boys while Connor, Holly and I went back to Disneyland and California Adventure to go on some other rides.  

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They made me go on Tower of Terror again and this time I was determined to have a better picture so I made sure to smile nicely.  Holly made fun of me that it looks like I was smiling for a regular picture and not having fun on a ride.  I guess I can't win!

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Overall we had a great time at Disneyland.  Corbin's favorite rides were Pirates of the Carribean, Peter Pan and Monsters, Inc.  Cason liked It's a Small World, Peter Pan and Monsters, Inc.  Kinsley was just perfect the whole time.  We couldn't have asked for better kids the whole trip.  Thanks to Nana and Papa and Holly for coming and making it more fun!!!

© The Duke Fam 2014