Sunday, April 16, 2017

Day 5: Disneyland AND California Adventure

 Its possible that the Oscar Meier wiener showing up outside our hotel window was the highlight of our trip for Michael.  He took this picture.  So Sunday night we sat around our little hotel living room and made a plan of what everyone wanted to do on our last day. Here were some of the things we wanted to do on our last day: Toontown, thunder mtn railroad, Jungle Safari, Pirates of the Caribbean, watch a show, dole whip for those who hadn't had one, space mountain and splash mtn for Michael who hadn't rode it yet and Kandace because she's a daredevil like her mom.   I think the first thing we did was Kandace and I went to get a fast pass for Thunder mountain railroad while the others got in line for Pirates of the Caribbean which doesn't have a fast pass.  The line for thunder mtn railroad was 5 minutes!!  We actually hopped in line thinking we could ride it real fast then catch up with everyone else but we ran out of time so we got out of line, got our fast passes and went to Pirates of the Caribbean.  Kandace and I didn't end up catching up with them but it was ok.  Pirates of the Caribbean had actually been closed down for a while and re-opened on our first day there but the line was outrageous, almost 2 hours long whenever I looked so we didn't do it until Monday.  I thought rides like haunted mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean were overrated but thats just me.  You just sit in a boat slowly riding along and look at pirate stuff.  Some people love it, but I'd rather go fast!  While I went and got fast passes for space mountain again Michael took the kids to toontown and I caught up with them after tomorrowland.  I was the official runner, even though you're not supposed to run in Disneyland, I totally did.  So we went to Mickey's house where you walk through his house, watch a little cartoon and end up in a room with him where you can get your picture with him.  I thought this was a little overrated and would have preferred a fast moving ride to this but the kids liked it I think?  Its been a month since we went and I've already forgotten a lot.  One thing on our to do list was catch a show since we hadn't seen any besides the late night ones.  Fantasy land has a huge outdoor amphitheater where they showed Mickey and the magic map and it was FANTASTIC!  One of my regrets is that we didn't catch more shows.  They were showing frozen in Hollywood land but we missed it.  We were always in a hurry to get on rides that we overlooked the shows.  So Michael took the kiddos to space mountain and then we headed to California adventure because the kids wanted to ride Radiator Springs racers and Toy story mania but toy story mania was too long of  a wait so Michael took them to radiator springs racers.   While they did that I took the little girls to A Bugs life and the Little Mermaid ride again.  It was special to me to spend time with just them for a little bit. By then Michael was back with the big kids and we went over to the pier and rode a couple rides over there.  Michael definitely plays it cool on the scary rides.  I loved splash mountain and space mountain and California screamin'!  I love fast rides and didn't get headaches or anything like I thought I might.

As we were walking around the pier getting ready to head home Stetson was talking about how sad he was that we were leaving and that he wanted a picture of all of us (not like Stetson to ask for pics) so we were trying to take a family selfie when a nice lady stopped and offered to take our pic.
What a great, fun family vacation.  Like I said, I didn't love the crowds and I wish we'd gone maybe a month sooner before spring break hits, but I'm thinking its pretty much crowded no matter when you go.  We got to go on all the major rides we'd wanted to.  Its overwhelming how many things there are to do at Disneyland!  I left wishing we'd done more shows but other than that I thought we did pretty good managing our time and getting the most out of our trip.  Next time I need to "take a chill" and not be so paranoid about getting everything in and maybe take a minute to stop and smell the roses.  Before we left Michael HAD to stop and get Mickey ice cream bars for everyone which cost us around $25.  We did end up spending probably too much on food but we didn't buy any souvenirs (minus 2 post cards) because everything was so expensive.  I'm grateful for my little family and the memories we made.

Day 4: church and Huntington Beach

 This was our first day of sleeping in our entire vacation and it was nice!!  After our continental breakfast, we got ready and Michael and Stetson went to a rental place at downtown Disney to get our rental car.  Michael was nervous to drive around in California but he did good and we found the church easy and its great to have a friendly ward to go to no matter where you are.  After sacrament we got some more groceries and headed to the BEACH!!  We were going to do the beach Monday but the forecast wasn't great for Monday so we switched days.  I have so so many great memories of the beach when I was growing up in Northern California.  I remember running up and down the sand while the water "chased me."  It was special to re-live it with my kids.  The weather was in the high 60s so it was pretty nice.  The water was cold but that didn't stop the kids.  After a few hours at the beach we took our stuff back to rental car and walked out to the pier which was cold but a pretty view.  After that we went to a seafood restaurant that had really good reviews.  It was pretty good but we ordered too much food.

Day 3: Magic morning at Disneyland

 So our package included a magic morning on Saturday which means we got in an hour before the park opened (7am) but there were a lot of other people who had the same package so it still means lots of time waiting in lines but not too bad.  I'd always wanted to get a pic of our family right inside the park with the Mickey face in the landscaping but we were always in too much of a hurry to get on rides!  :)  So this day was pretty much devoted to fantasy land, since it doesn't have any fast passes.  The first ride we got in line for was Peter Pan's flight per Amy's orders because it is one of the most popular rides.  We still waited about 40 minutes even though we were there early.  After that we hit pretty much every ride in Fantasy Land.  After the first couple they're all the same but they were super fun for Stahle and Janelle.  After Fantasy Land we finally got to Tomorrowland and did space mountain twice (me first then Michael) since we had a switch pass.  That one was one of my favorites.  While I was waiting for Michael and the 2 oldest to get back, Janelle, Stahle and I tried to find somewhere to eat breakfast.  While we were looking we stumbled upon Mary Poppins!  The line wasn't too long to see her and Janelle really wanted to get her picture and it was so cute.  They were so kind and genuine to Janelle.  I think Janelle was more interested in the picture than anything!

Janelle and Stahle will tell everyone that the teacups were their favorite ride.

This is Kandace right after we got into the park.  It was so early and we were tired! By midlunch time we were pretty much over the crowds so we went back to the hotel and the kids swam.  I didn't think we'd spend so much time in the pool but we did.  The kids loved it and so did I.  One night Kandace and I went hot tubing just the 2 of us (she actually went back and forth between the pool and hot tub).  It was so fun.  All vacations should include a hot tub.  And palm trees and continental breakfast