Winter Vacation: Day 9 & 10

Saturday was a busy day. First, we went to IKEA to have breakfast and let Hyang browse around looking for things to buy. She settled on some door hooks and glasses, a children’s chair and a little tea set for the girls to play with. Afterwards, we dropped her off at a baby shower for one of her church friends the kids and I went to a nearby McDonald’s for some food and fun. Afterwards, we all went to see “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”, but had trouble getting to the theater and then back home again due to trouble with the GPS for my phone’s navigation. The movie itself was fine, nothing stood out from the experience, either positive or negative, and I guess that’s alright for a kids movie as the children found it sufficiently entertaining.

For today, it was church, followed by lunch with friends, although I have to say that that it was too large a group to really have a good conversation, at least from my perspective. Then we went down to Cedar Hill to pick up Joel’s glasses and spend a little time relaxing at Barnes & Noble (I know, not the most original idea we’ve come up with). Hyang and I plan to watch a movie after the kids go to bed (Doubt) and then get to bed early ourselves for the last dying gasp of our vacation, about five hours at King’s Spa in the morning before I have to head off to work in the afternoon. And that will be it, the end of our Winter vacation. Thanks for reading.

Winter Vacation: Day 7 & 8

Thursday was another day of getting chores done, including having Joel taken to an optometrist to have his eyes checked, and then taking his prescription to the eyeglasses store to be filled. He’s been having some difficulty reading the board at school, to the point where his teacher has been moving him to the front of the class so he could see easier. Well, hopefully these glasses will do the trick and he won’t have that problem any more. One thing I am very thankful for is the vision insurance I have through my work. The glasses only cost us $25 and we were able to get him a nice frame that he liked. This is very different than my first experience with glasses, which included having to wear some pretty ugly thick plastic frames that made me embarrassed to even have glasses. From what I can tell, Joel is pretty happy with his frames and is even looking forward to wearing them. Now I just hope he can take care of them. He isn’t the most careful boy in the world.

Today was a bust, and it was all my fault. I stayed up last night, basically all night, playing a game, and so was too tired to carry through with the plans we had made for today. I apologized to Hyang, but I know she was still disappointed. The only bright spot was that at least she got to spend the day with her friend Ji-hae, so she shouldn’t have been to bored. Still, I’m going to make sure I get some sleep tonight and not disappoint here again.

Finally, I have been wanting to figure out a way to separate my “Meditations” posts from the rest of the blog, and perhaps have it on its own, separate page. No luck so far, but I’ll keep looking into it and see if I can’t figure a way out.

Winter Vacation: Day 6

Not much to report today. The older children went back to school, while Hyang and I did various chores that were in need of being done. Among these was the purchase of some new shoes for Joel, since the ones we had bought him earlier were uncomfortable for him. And since Hyang was there shopping for shoes, she also picked up a new pair for Holy, since she found a cute pair for a good price. Now all three of the children have a new pair of shoes from their Winter break.

Otherwise, it was a lazy sort of day. I suspect tomorrow will be similar. I need to check on the books for my classes and do some other things around the Arlington campus and I am sure Hyang has things she is planning to do in and around Arlington as well. Also, we’re going to try and get Joel in to see the optometrist this week. That’s about it. No photos from today, but you can check the older posts for links to the vacation album on facebook for previous photos.

Winter Vacation: Day 5

We had another action packed day, with early morning adventures with MagiQuest, followed up by a couple of hours of swimming. We broke for lunch at around 1PM, went to do some more MagiQuesting, then did some last minute swimming before finally heading out from Great Wolf Lodge for the comforts of our own home. They children are getting ready for bed right now in preparation for school tomorrow, and I feel pretty good that we gave them a good Winter vacation in the last five days of their Winter break. Pardon me while I give myself a little pat on the back (with lots of thanks going to my lovely wife and Ji-Hae, our stalwart friend).

Check out the new photos in our facebook vacation album.

Winter Vacation: Day 3

Today being Sunday, we went to church, running late as usual. We were responsible for being greeters/ushers today, and Hyang’s big idea the past few months is to make the job a sort of family affair, with the parents and children both greeting people at the entrance to the sanctuary. We started it off a couple of months ago and apparently we’ve made it through the whole rotation, so it was our turn again. I don’t mind, and for the most part, the children don’t either, although they can get a little antsy at the end.

There was a meeting after church, but once that was over, we headed over to Chuck E Cheese’s for some family fun. The kids were really excited, naturally, and were really eager to get there and start winning their tickets. Hyang and I took turns following them around taking pictures, and I selected about a dozen to add to our Facebook vacation photo album. The children all seemed to have a good time, although I don’t know how well they did on the ticket front. Seems to me they got about four tickets per token (we got them 100 tokens), but they didn’t mind, and after a typical wait at the overworked gift counter, they collected their little toys and we headed home.

We tried to get them to bed at a decent time so they would be ready for tomorrow, but it seems the girls were still a little wired from I presume the sugar in their drinks and had a hard time going to sleep. Well, they’ll be fine tomorrow with the thought of Great Wolf Lodge to keep them going, and hopefully they’ll be good and tired when night comes and sleep well at the lodge room.

Winter Vacation: Days 1 & 2

I was planning on posting something for each day, but got distracted yesterday, in addition to not really doing anything of any note yesterday. We had planned on visiting Hyang’s friend and having their son come over to spend the night with us, but that fell through when she had some guests unexpectedly visit them. Other than that, we mostly just stayed home, taking care of various chores.

Today was a little better. We went out and finally watched a movie with all of the children. I say finally, because Joel has got to be the most anti-movie boy on the planet. He always objects to any suggestion that we go watch a movie. This time was no different, but we had an ace up our sleeve, as we could hold Chuck-E-Cheese hostage for him unless he agreed to go to the movie. Serene has been asking us for so long to go to the movies that I knew we had to go to at least once during the vacation before they had to go back to school.

So, having a look over all the movies available to us, the only one that was running in a regular theater we felt comfortable with was Princess and the Frog, and Hyang just didn’t feel the magic when I showed her the previews. But after having a look at the dollar theaters, which usually show older movies, we came across Astroboy:
Hyang proclaimed, “Atom!” immediately upon seeing the trailer, having discovered her childhood hero reborn in the movie.  That pretty much decided it for me, but I showed the children as well and they all seemed to like it too, even Joel (although he still didn’t want to go to the movies to see it).

I had never seen the earlier version of Astroboy, so I didn’t know what to expect, but it wasn’t too bad.  The plot devices were a little hamfisted, but I think even that works good when your target audience is younger children and perhaps adults who reminisce on childhood memories of watching the original.

Actually, even what little dramatic tension this story telling offered was too much for our poor Joel.  Hyang, who sat next to him in the theater, told me that he cried several times during the movie. And at the climatic scene, where we are supposed to be in fear that Astroboy will recover from his cataclysmic battle with his archnemesis, Joel told Hyang a couple of times that he couldn’t handle it and needed to leave the movie.  Hyang made him stay, but when the lights came back on, it was pretty clear to me that he had been crying.  What a sensitive soul our Joel is.

Afterwards, we did a couple of more chores and then let the kids go shopping to spend their New Years money they got for bowing to Hyang and I on New Years morning.  Serene settled on a couple of coin operated machines at the movie theater and some sidewalk chalk, Holy picked out a large rubber ball and a play microphone, and Joel purchased a gyro operated racecar.  You can see the photos, as well as any subsequent photos I take while on vacation here:

Facebook >> Winter Vacation 2010 album