Today we christened our family gift by going to Movie World and getting our seasons passes made :)  It's about a 40minute drive from us and by the time we arrived the boys were beside themselves!   It was not too bad, crowd-wise, in the morning, but got a bit much after lunch time.  We arrived and took a wander down Main Street around 10am to find THIS coming up behind us!   Some evil villains were up to no good, attempting to wrangle a young lady into their clutches when the Caped Crusader himself rocked up on his very spiffy looking Batmobile to save the day.  There was a mock battle, just like in the movies, and in the end the damsel was saved by Batman and he rode off  into the sunset.

Frodo did not care for the rather loud Batman music playing, but thought the scene was cool... while Merry lost the plot and burst out in tears.   I think he actually thought it was a real fight and that someone got hurt.  So we sat down outside the Harry Potter shop (which looks JUST like a shop out of Diagon Alley) and explained to him that it was all pretend, just like watching a movie.... took him a few minutes but he perked up.
The boys thought this car was just awesome... it was full of 'bullet holes' :)

 On our way to the Kids Zone we passed THIS very evil shop!   Thankfully it was NOT open yet! lol
 On arrival in Kids Zone, Merry & Sam went on the Tijuana Taxi's, who's patron was Speedy Gonzales.  These taxi's were not terribly speedy though lol... but once he got the hang of it, Merry did quite well.  Sam sped past  before I could snap a pic of him (he must've gotten the fast car :P)
 While waiting for Dad & Merry to come back from the Yosemite Sam train ride, Frodo & Sam hung out with Taz for a bit and we had some fruit & cold drinks in the shade.  The boys all had a go on the bumper cars and thought it was great fun.  I noticed a pattern... Merry cops the poops about getting on every single thing, there are tears, he rides and has a blast... then wants to go again after LOL.
 Then we went back to Main Street to watch the Looney Toons Rock n Roll show, which included Bugs, some 'girl rabbit', Daffy, and Tweety...  Good fun!

 Hubby went off with the Teen, who was unable to ride the Superman Escape roller coaster without someone to hold his hat,glasses,wallet etc... and took Frodo with him.  This left Sam, Merry & I to our own devices.  We checked out the Kids Zone, but it was 1230 at this point and omg where did all these PEOPLE come from??  The lines were absurd so we went exploring the rest of the park.  We wandered down the little replica China Town, and then meandered over to the Wild West part of the park.  This was SO cool :)  There is a little old west style main street with decked walkways and fake shop fronts (nice shady spots to sit for a cold drink & a rest).   Sam & Merry thought Boot Hill cemetary was entertaining... I have weird kids ;)
They also thought the small 'Custom Coffins' shop, complete with deceased in coffin leaning against the wall, was great.  In the interest of brevity and bandwidth, I have graciously left that photo out... dude in the box looked a little ripe lol.

We wandered through the rest of the area and found a great spot to sit & eat in a 'barn' filled with picnic tables.  Perfect... shady, cool breezes, and off my FEET for a bit!  Eventually the Hubby, Frodo & Teen joined us where we noshed on some chips (fat french fries for my American friends ;) and had a look at this most awesome ride.  

Sadly we did NOT get to ride the Wild West Adventure, because while we waited for the rest of the crew, the line went from fairly short, to positively ginormous!  We did watch a half dozen logs full 'o people go splashing down though, and Sam is adamant that he MUST ride this next time :)

Such is the beauty of season passes,  from now until June 30 we shall regularly darken the doorsteps of the theme parks.  We are testing out Wet n Wild on New Years eve, as they have a special evening for littlies.  Free activities included with admission, and a movie at 7pm (Smurfs.. but I shall persevere) and they bump the clock at 5pm so the kids can enjoy ringing in the New Year at 9pm :D
With this bloggin' thing?!?   I popped on to put a few holiday pics up, only to realize I haven't posted in December at all *sheepish*  SO, with considering that a brief update is in order.  Sam finished school for the year a couple of weeks ago, he got a special award and was so stoked!  He had no idea it was coming, which made it even more fun.   Here he is with the principal presenting him with his certificate AND a special gold pin.  He loves things like pins, so he wore it constantly and has made a special box for it hehe.

Aside from that, Merry & Frodo and I went on a special park day with some home school friends, both old and new :) and had a blast.  Merry was incredibly water logged by the time we were done!  Frodo was rather shy & reserved most of the day, but given the crap treatment he's recieved from kids at school, me & the other mums were very understanding of his reticence!  We've signed on for classes starting in February with them though, so hopefully he relaxes and enjoys it :)
 The first week of holidays we went to the Ipswich Nature Centre, which is an animal park :D   The boys love it, but Merry was quite young last time we went so he really got into it this time!  The first critters we saw were some rather LARGE Goana's... they were about as long as Frodo is tall ( and he's nearing 1.5metres!).  I would have taken photos.. but Mr. Goana was feeling VERY friendly to Mrs. Goana (who didn't seem interested lol) and yeah.. that just doesn't make for blog friendly photography! Next up were the wallaby's and they were much more photogenic :)
Sam met an interesting Emu... it followed us up and down the fence for a bit, I'm fairly sure it was after food.
 But when Sam stopped, the Emu stopped and stared him straight in the face!  I was pretty glad for that nice tall fence between them.
There were also some domestic animals... Merry found this Silky Bantam chicken to be just the most curious thing.  He kept going back to have a closer look at the funny chook.  

There was a fair bit of this as well... 

 And some cool scaly critters! This is a blue tongued lizard (left) and a frill necked lizard (right).  There were also Wombats, which I couldn't get a good pic of due to glare off the glass of their posh air conditioned sleeping dens.... and Bilby's, which are housed in a semi darkened enclosure since they are nocturnal critters.  

 Which catches us up to yesterday, Christmas Eve :)  The grandparents came out as always, for our traditional seafood feast, which was delish.  Frodo was Very pleased with himself as he got to decorate the Pavlova.
 After the boys went to bed, and the grandparents wandered off home, the stockings were .. well, not hung lol but filled at least ;)  We don't do a massive gift fest like so many do these days but the boys were thrilled with their loot.
 A couple of much anticipated wii games were received so there was a little bit of this :)
 And a lot of this (hangin out on the patio)-
 To play with this!  A totally cool little pirate ship water play table.  We don't have a big yard so no pool, and our trampoline is bundled up in the garage.. but this and a slip n slide we can accomodate!   Frodo has had a 2nd bout of tonsillitis, poor kid... and a bad reaction to some penicillin (not allergy, just puky!) he's finally on the road to recovery.
Which is a good thing because the one thing we really did splash out on (pun intended lol) was locals passes to the big 3 amusement parks until June 30, 2012... and we're making the first trip in a few days.  I was a tad worried but I think he'll be through with the first antibiotics and good to go have some fun!

Until then, I'll be spending my time relaxing on the veranda reading my fave book, The Mists of Avalon, on my new Kindle!  Merry Christmas to me :D  And a super wonderful holiday season to you and yours, whatever holiday your family celebrates at this time of year!