Love, Laughter, and Life

Adventures With a Book Lover


4 Comments

Throwback Thursday: The Year of Kevin and Angie (Happy 35th Anniversary to Us) #TBT

scanproof

Look at the cute guy! He asked me to marry him back in the days of Polaroid pictures. He took this picture and had to mail it to me (snail mail). 1981! What a great year.

We graduated from high school in 1981 and I went off to college. Poor fellow. He thought he would never see me again, lost to one of those studious university boys.

Four years later, after too-many-to-count phone calls (ring twice and hang up to let the other know we were thinking about him/her), boxes of letters and cards, miles and miles traveled to visit each other (I chose a university that was over four hours away from home), and alternating weekend visiting schedule, we were married at our home church.

After a honeymoon to Disneyland (yes, we are a COOL couple), we settled in the lower Yakima Valley to raise our children and pursue our careers.

How long was our dating and engagement period? The total is about seven years. We met in high school, started dating, took a year off, then got back together for good. 35 years later, we are still best friends and more in love than ever.

And they said it would never last.

Take your time, youngsters. Be patient. Wait for the right person. Make sure you are best friends first. And then commit for the rest of your life.

LOL. Old lady Quantrell giving marriage advice. Best ever piece I can give? Base your relationship on faith in Jesus. God has kept us going through good and bad times, and we’ve had plenty of both.

Happy anniversary, my love.


2 Comments

Disneyland: 10 Tips for Surviving Your Vacation While Experiencing Menopause

Reblogged from my old blog at AngieQuantrell.blogspot.com on October 8, 2014.

Yes. It’s true. Menopause does change your outlook on life, at least temporarily. I didn’t know how much until we took a recent trip to Disneyland. It was my only trip to the Big D while enjoying the side effects of the Big M – menopause.

Mostly, the heat made it miserable for me (and thereby, my hubby). Shade and AC were my favorite attractions this go-round. Here are some tips that helped me stay sane while experiencing the magic of Disney while hormonally unbalanced.

1. SHADE. I’ve already mentioned this. Shade is your friend. Your very best friend, next to AC. Find it and stand there. Seek seats in shady areas to recoup or wait for parades. Take an umbrella if necessary to make your own shade. Shade is found in all sorts of lovely shops, restaurants, attractions, and natural settings. Seek and find.

2. AC. Air conditioning should be first, as I LOVE AC. Some of the best places to find AC? Again – shops, restaurants (indoor), and attractions. Pirates quickly became a favorite ride due to the blasts of cool air propelling from the doors, as well as the approximately 15 minutes worth of sit-down-in-AC-time while on the actual ride. Find those indoor rides and patronize them. We were also rejuvenated by lolling about in our hotel room, complete with beautiful AC.

3. Go NAKED. NOT really! But do wear thin, cotton clothing. I wanted to wear sleeveless tops, but my little backpack then chaffed my upper arms. Plus, short sleeves protect your shoulders from sunburn. Thin clothes do the trick. Cotton absorbs sweat and dries from sweat relatively fast. I lived in shorts and thin shirts.

4. Eat SMALL. Huge meals made me have more hot flashes, in addition to the multiple (and I mean MULTIPLE) hot flashes I had due to change in temperatures from the northwest and the heat spell found in Orange County. Small meals and snacks made it easier to deal with the constant dripping sweat resulting from hot flashes (hereafter to be called HF). Relief, if there is such a thing, comes in lack of heavy clothing.

5. NUTS. This is perhaps one of my favorite discoveries. Buy nut pack cases from Costco. Carry around a few packages. Eat them as a snack or a meal. The protein and extra salt helped replace what I was licking off of my upper lip and wiping off of my sweaty brow.

6. Alternate. Enjoy an indoor attraction or event. Then head out for a sunny ride. Go back inside to shop. Stand in line for an outdoor show. Etc. Etc. Give your body a chance to reset.

7. Embrace the COFFEE BREAK. This is another favorite that we just discovered this trip. Take a coffee break. Every day. You don’t have to drink coffee. Now that Starbucks is on both Main Street (inside the park) and Downtown Disney (outside the park), the opportunities are plentiful. We hit the Main Street store each morning, staked out an in-the-shade table, and drank iced green or passion tea. Plus we added a snack – a nut pack or pastry. I needed the shade break and cool drink. My honey needed the food. Perfect win-win situation.

(HINT: You cannot reload your Starbucks card while inside Disneyland. If you are planning on collecting stars, load at home, load at Downtown Disney, or set your card to automatic reload).


8. FLOAT a BOAT. Drink enough water to literally float a boat. I drenched my clothing continually all day with sweat. Really, it was disgusting. So I had to drink, drink, and drink some more. Not just plain water. What was really refreshing was sparkling water. We stocked up at home, brought a few cases with us, and kept it cool in the hotel fridge. Ahhhh. The pause that refreshes.

9. Get a FAN. I could not have survived at all without my hand fan. It’s just a cheap little paper fan with wood slats. But it folds up so I could put it in my backpack or pocket and take it out as needed. It was in use most of the time, providing a breeze where none was to be found. Disneyland does have those cool battery driven fans that spritz water out as they spin. They cost $18. I was too cheap to buy one. Instead, stand beside some kids who are holding one. They don’t pay attention and will accidentally spray you. I spent some time next to a few youngsters while waiting for a show. They kept my legs cool (not that they knew it, but I felt it). Or buy a water fan in advance of your trip. Take it along.

10. Be REALISTIC. I thought I was still 25 and not experiencing hormonal surges and an excess of HF’s. We quickly learned. Slow down. Have fun. Get a 5 Day Pass. You will have plenty of time to see everything. EVERYTHING.

I can’t wait to make a return trip. Go Disney!


Leave a comment

Throwback Thursday: Disney with Hot Flashes

DSC_0254

Four years ago, my honey and I took a trip to Disneyland.

We drove. I was smack in the middle of horrid hot flashes. The AC quit just when we hit LA traffic. Record temps for October visited the area. Sweat was my constant companion.

Why this photo? I look slim! And mostly happy. And tall. Though I’m holding my shoulder weird, no idea why. There’s probably a build-up of sweat on the opposite shoulder or my shirt is soggy and I’m trying to make it not touch my body. I can’t remember if this is Minnie’s or Mickey’s house. Mickey’s I think, on the way to the cartoon room where we watch oldies while waiting our turn to see Mickey. If you look close, you can see my red, sweaty face. This was taken while inside an air-conditioned attraction. Sad.

Despite miserable menopause (M&M, but not the good chocolately kind), well, Disneyland! Disneyland is always fun, though this trip I had to learn new coping skills for heat, salty sweat, despair, damp clothing, and general crankiness. But…Disneyland!

If you happen to need special tips for visiting the Big D during the Big M, I’m reblogging  my favorite tips on Friday. Best wishes to you if you need these tips. My sympathies go with you.

 


Leave a comment

40 Years of Labor Days

2C5627EC-0272-4274-9EBA-B2619F09781E

A 40 year friendship! You can see Crystal Lake but not Mt. Rainier, which is glowing in the background. Selfies are not my strong suit…

We first met 40 years ago today, Labor Day, at the Wapato Harvest Festival parade.

Newly arrived from Arizona, I didn’t know many people. He had lived in Wapato for nearly all his life. We came face to face in front of the pastor’s house on the “Ave” where church members and assorted tag-a-longs gathered to watch the parade before heading to the city park for rides, games, and food.

Tall, thin, curly-haired; my impression was of a ‘cool’ guy who couldn’t be bothered to chat with a short, sun-kissed non-native. By his report, he was cool but thought I was the most beautiful creature he’d ever seen.

We made slow progress at first. His mom suggested he take me to the homecoming dance. “Nope.” So I went with my cousin from Seattle who was immediately the hottie everybody wanted.

Come spring, our relationship was growing in earnest and we became a couple. At least for a few months. Then I took a year off during our junior year. But like bees to honey, we were back together for senior year.

Off I went to Western Washington University, with the claim that, “If we can survive 4 years apart for college, we can survive anything.” My guy burned the road up between Wapato and Bellingham (4 1/2 hour drive one way), coming to see me every other weekend. Sometimes I traveled back home but then he had to share me with everyone. Back before cell phones and computers (I KNOW! Gasp!) we had a code phone call ring. To avoid the charges of our dorm phone, he would call, let it ring twice, then hang up. That was our good-night check-in. We did talk on the phone, but not much. We spent much of our time writing letters back and forth. Boxes of notes, cards, and creative tomes of love…if I had spent that much time studying…

In June of 1985, we became Mr. and Mrs. This was just a new beginning to our life of adventure, starting right off by driving to So Cal and Disneyland (giving our parents a heart-attack). Our honeymoon was the first of many on-the-road journeys Mr. and Mrs. enjoyed and plan to enjoy.

Two babies, five grandchildren, furry pets, revolving jobs, and numerous trips, houses, and escapades, we are still best friends and more in love each day. Sure there have been struggles and explosive moments, but we’ve stayed committed to each other. It’s wonderful to have a best friend and partner standing beside you on the journey, one who knows all your faults and fears and how you look in the morning (or after childbirth or surgery or the stomach flu) and who still loves you and takes you on dates and hiking in the mountains and on motorcycle rides and finishes your sentences or phrases cloned from favorite movies.

40 years of labor (of a different sort) and here we are today. Best friends, lovers, partners in crime. God knew what He was doing when He hooked us up. And we’ve kept Him busy taking care of us ever since.

To my best friend.

06C99359-D69A-4366-BA0B-1EAF978A5D27


Leave a comment

5 Ways to Play the Hidden Mickey Game

image

Can you spot the hidden Mickey?

My husband and I recently enjoyed an anniversary trip to Disneyland and California Adventure. We enriched our experience (and even discovered new areas of both parks) by playing the Hidden Mickey Game. Here are 5 ways to play the Hidden Mickey Game.

1. There is a Hidden Mickey Game? Check this off the list! Now you KNOW there is a Hidden Mickey Game. You can’t play if you aren’t aware of the game.

image

2. Imprint your brain with the image of Mickey’s head and ears – very recognizable. There are also other full body images and side profiles of Mickey, but we spent our time hunting the head image. Train your brain to recognize this shape and you will discover it everywhere. Disney does this well.

image

3. Go Mickey Hunting. Look at fine details of hotel rooms (especially at the resort hotels), decor, carts, rides, artwork…every scene you see is a possibility. Even before you get in the front gate, you can find Mickeys in the central plaza. Document your finds! When we got home and looked at the photos I took, they were mostly hidden Mickeys!

image

4. Ask. Nearly every attraction or ride or area has an intentional hidden Mickey. We found cast members to be very knowledgeable and helpful in our hunt. Some told us exactly where to look while others gave hints. Some Mickeys are very easy to spot, others we searched and searched for on multiple attraction rides and could not see them.

image

5. Buy the book! Yes, there is a book. I didn’t want to purchase a book, as I felt it was cheating. But I finally caved and grabbed it. There are so many planned Hidden Mickeys, but also others that can be discovered. The book is older, so some Mickeys are gone due to new construction. And new Mickeys are added every time they create new attractions or remodel or update areas of both parks. The book was a huge help. On the plane ride home, I went though it page by page and jotted down the date we discovered each Mickey.

image

Extra Tip: Listen and watch. There are others searching out Hidden Mickeys. You can help each other once you are aware there is a game going on!

Adding the Hidden Mickey Game to our Disney adventure was fun, fun, fun! People looked at us as if we were a bit odd, but that only added to our excitement!

Happy Mickey hunting!