Hi everyone! It's Emma, and I'm back from my weekend trip with Mama. I had such a wonderful time. Honestly, I wouldn't have minded staying a little bit longer, but Mama needed to get back to Papa and their daughters. :}
Even though I would have loved to take a longer trip, I'm so grateful that I got to go. I know I will always treasure the memories I made. It was great getting a chance to know Janie and Kailani a little bit better, too.
Friday morning was the first cold, overcast morning we've had here. It was so nice that it was finally starting to feel like Fall. :) Mama was planning on being ready to go right when Grandmama and Mimi arrived, but as usual, she had a few last-minute things to take care of before we could leave. ;) When Grandmama saw how anxious I was to get going, she told me that Janie and Kailani were waiting for me out in the car.
I decided I might as well go visit with them while I was waiting for Mama to finish getting ready. So I put on my backpack and headed out to the van. Janie and Kailani smiled and waved when they saw me. :)
It was really great getting a chance to chat while we waited for the humans. I remembered them from last Christmas at Mimi's house, but it had been a while since then, and the three of us didn't get much of a chance to interact that much individually.
At last, everyone was ready to go! Mama took this picture of the three of us right before we left. :)
Our first short stop was at a Taco Bell for lunch. Yum! :)
Our plan was to stay in the Vacaville/Fairfield area for the weekend, so after a quick break at the Nut Tree shopping center, we headed to Fairfield to see the Jelly Belly factory. Mama had never been there before, so Grandmama and Mimi thought it would be fun to take her.
Here we are outside the factory.
And here's a closer look. :) We were really excited, because Mama said that we would get to take a tour of the factory and see how Jelly Bellies were made.
On our way to the tour, we stopped to check out the cafe menu. We'd already eaten, so we didn't order anything. I thought it was cool that you could get a Jelly Belly-shaped pizza, though! ;)
Here we are, waiting in line to go on the factory tour (Mama was kind enough to hold us so we could rest our feet). ;)
Before we began the official tour, we were brought to this room that was full of portraits of famous people...all made out of Jelly Bellies!!
Here's the portrait of John Wayne...
...and here's a close-up to show you all of the individual Jelly Bellies. Our tour guide told us that the artist first paints the portrait with colored paints, then selects the Jelly Bellies for the top. Each Jelly Belly is covered in a special glue and put in place...one at a time!! I would NEVER be patient enough to do that!
We weren't allowed to take pictures during the tour, but it was really interesting. I got to see how Jelly Bellies are made and learned all sorts of interesting facts.
For instance, did you know that the Jelly Belly factory also makes other types of candy? One other thing they make is Candy Corn. They weren't the original makers of Candy Corn, but they've been making it the longest. Neat, huh? ;)
Here we are afterwards with our hats and our free Jelly Belly packages. Everyone who takes the tour is required to wear one of these paper hats. They were a little bit big for us, but we did our best to keep them on. Mama and Grandmama had a hard time keeping them on for the opposite reason...they were a little small! ;)
Here's a shot of the really fun Jelly Belly gift shop in the same building as the factory. If you like Jelly Bellies, this is definitely the place for you! ;)
They had lots of other things for sale, too, like these yummy giant peanut butter cups!! Tess would sure like these. :)
Here I am checking out the selection of stuffed Jelly Belly characters. :) There were lots of other fun gifts, too.
After we were done with the tour and with our shopping, we went out front to take some pics. You know Mama and her photo ops! ;)
They even had Jelly Belly cars!
Because of the time of year, there were lots of pumpkins out front for decorations. We decided to take some pictures with them. :)
We had a great time at the Jelly Belly factory. I'm so glad Grandmama and Mimi thought of taking us!
The sign as you leave.
Our next stop was the Solano Mall in Fairfield. Mama was SUPER excited about getting to a Disney Store (especially because she had spending money!), and I have to admit, I was pretty excited too! ;) Janie and Kailani decided to stay in the car, but I wasn't about to miss out on my first Disney Store experience! ;)
Here I am standing outside the Disney Store, just about to go in! :D
There was so much to look at! I really liked this Belle necklace and bracelet set, but it was a little big for me.
There were a LOT of ornaments out already. They sure get ready for Christmas early!
This is the Christmas ornament that Mama was planning on getting while we were there.
...the face paint and Rapunzel's face mold left something to be desired. In the end, after looking through every single one, Mama decided to get something else instead.
Wow, there sure were a lot of stuffed animals there! Something tells me there had been some kids there playing with them, because Mama said they're normally a lot more organized. ;)
Here are some of the 12" dolls. They made me think of Mama's Belle doll. I wonder if any of these dolls will one day write a blog? ;)
And here I am with the Disney Animator's Collection dolls. Mama had talked about adding Belle from this series to her collection.
She was also tempted by Rapunzel, but she wasn't sure if she cared for her rather sad expression. ;)
There was a huge Cinderella display since the movie was just released on Blu-Ray.
More Belle and Prince dolls! :)
They also had some of the bigger singing princess dolls. I thought they were really pretty. Some of them even sang for me while I visited with them. :)
And when I saw these cute stuffed Beasts, I just had to take a picture with one. He was very polite, too...such a gentleman! I tried to convince Mama that we needed to take him home with us, but she said she didn't want to spend that much on one item. Poor guy...he had looked so hopeful for a moment. Maybe someday I'll convince Mama to rescue him from the Disney Store and give him a good home. :)
I got a chance to chat with several of the stuffed Beasts. They were all very polite, and didn't mind me sharing their shelf for a while. :)
I loved this cute little Pascal, too. Well, okay, he's kind of a BIG Pascal, but still... ;)
I didn't want to ever leave the Disney Store, and neither did Mama, but we had to go check into our hotel before it got too late. Mama now had a big Disney Store bag, though, and a big smile on her face, so I think that helped a little. ;)
I have to admit, once we got to the hotel it felt nice to sit for a bit. I hadn't realized how tired my feet were from all of the walking!
And when Janie, Kailani and I saw the MASSIVE, soft bed, we were even happier about being at the hotel!
I didn't stay seated for long, though. I noticed the window and just had to take a peek at the view.
It was beautiful. :)
Mama, Grandmama, and Mimi went back out to run more errands after we had checked in, but Kailani, Janie, and I decided to get dressed in our jammies, eat snacks, and watch TV.
Grandmama was kind enough to pop us some popcorn since we couldn't reach the microwave by ourselves. Then we opened our Jelly Bellies from the factory, snuggled under Kailani's blanket, and enjoyed cable TV.
When Mama, Grandmama, and Mimi got back, they told us it was time to get in bed. Grandmama had brought sleeping bags for each of us, so we set them up and talked about what we'd do the next day as we climbed into bed.
It wasn't long before we fell asleep, though. It had been a long day!
I couldn't wait to find out what we'd do next...but sleep was what I needed first. ;)
Read Part 2 HERE. :)