We got to go to Disneyland at the beginning of December! This was a trip that we'd been waiting so patiently for ;) We headed to California on Thursday, the 3rd and headed back Sunday, the 6th.
I've kind of mentioned this before, but we always knew we'd eventually get a van, When we found out Tanis and Kent were taking us to Disneyland we decided why not go ahead and just go for it. Road trips in the Passat were not too fun once Janie came along because if the kids needed help or comforting, one of us would have to climb back and cram between the two car seats..haha. It seems a little funny to have a van with just 2 kids, but we'll be trying for #3 sooner than later :)
I had to get a picture at the start of our trip. First road trip in the van! First of many I'm sure. It was so amazing to have so much space!! When I had to get back there with the kids I could actually move around! Yay!! And yes, we got a selfie stick..haha.
Later in the ride, both zonked ;)
We made it to our hotel at the Howard Johnson around 4:30 and got settled in some. Then we headed to Downtown Disney for dinner. We ate at the Naples Pizzeria, but we had a 30 minute wait so we walked over to the Grand Californian Hotel. I had heard there was a "life-size gingerbread house" there. Turns out it wasn't exactly life-size, but it was big, and REAL!
So when we showed up there were 3 cast members there singing and I couldn't get a picture of the front of it, so I actually went back Friday afternoon and got this shot..haha. I love all of the details in the doorway :)
The list of ingredients. 600 pounds of gingerbread and powdered sugar each!
The beautiful lobby.
We had our dinner (delicious pizza btw!) and then walked around some. The kids spotted this giant Olaf.
Aiden loved looking in all of the store windows as we headed back to our hotel.
We got up early Friday morning, around 6. Janie helped wake up Aiden ;) He did not like the early wake-up call.
We had breakfast at Mimi's Cafe before heading to the park.
It was so fun to be at Disneyland with it decked out in Christmas.
Trent went off to grab some Fastpasses while the rest of us got in line for Peter Pan's Flight. I was a little concerned that we already had a 50-minute wait :/
While we were in line though, it was kind of fun to see the wicked queen up in the window of the Snow White castle open the curtains, look down at the crowd, and pull the curtains closed again (below) - it happened about every minute. It's amazing all of the details in the park!
Next we headed to Tomorrowland. There weren't any crowds so we got this picture at the back of Sleeping Beauty's castle.
Aiden was pretty excited about going on Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters :)
I love that they let you email the picture to yourself at the end. Too bad my face is completely blocked by my hand. I guess I got pretty into it ;) I thought I had been doing pretty well, but I guess it looks like I lost big time!
Aiden didn't really care about stopping to meet the characters this day. He liked seeing them, but didn't want to stand in a long line to meet them. Fine by us!
Next we went to a little show - Anna & Elsa's Royal Welcome. It was nice to be able to sit together and watch.
Afterward we were able to get this shot in front of the castle really quick before the Disneyland Band came through. We were immediately hurried out of the way. And Janie fell asleep minutes after this!
Trent and I then used our Fastpasses to go on Space Mountain and Tanis took Aiden on the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage.
Then we grabbed corn dogs for lunch at the stand on Main Street.
This band hops on the carousel every once in a while :)
I remember the Dumbo ride being a favorite when I was young, so I insisted we go on it after lunch :)
Janie was up with Tanis and Kent.
The parade was headed through so we got in line for "It's a Small World" and got to see some of it while waiting. I was surprised by how adamant the workers were that we keep moving. They did not want us to stop and watch!
Beauty and the Beast.
Then we got on the ride.
Now Aiden passed out!
Tanis and Kent took the kids through Tarzan's Treehouse (Aiden loved it!) while we scoped out the Dole Whips.
A quick glimpse of Aladdin, Jasmine, and the genie.
And then Tanis and Kent used their Fastpasses for Star Tours. This is a terrible picture, but we went to check out the new Star Wars Launch Bay while we waited. I wasn't too interested in it..ha.
When they got back, we took our turn.
Then we headed towards New Orleans Square. This is where my phone died. I was so bummed!! No more pictures from our evening in Disneyland.
We got in line for Pirates of the Caribbean and made it almost all the way to the front of the line, but Janie was having a hard time so Trent dipped out with her :/ I was bummed. But Aiden and I still went! Aiden was a tad nervous during this ride so it was fun to have him cuddle in :)
For dinner Trent and Kent grabbed some clam chowder in a bread bowl over in New Orleans Square while the rest of us got something from the Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe (grilled cheese and tomato basil soup).
Then I stayed with the kids while Trent and his parents went on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
We were all starting to feel a bit weary so we ended the evening with the Haunted Mansion. Janie had fallen asleep so Kent stayed back with her. Aiden loves The Nightmare Before Christmas so this was a fun one for him :)
We were freezing when we got back to the hotel. I gave the kids hot baths and then I took a good, long hot shower. While I was blowdrying, Janie joined me in the bathroom and ate her applesauce..ha.
In the meantime Aiden was fast asleep ;)
We spent Saturday in California Adventure. Like previously, Trent went off to grab Fastpasses and met up with us a little later. We headed towards Olaf's Snow Fest, but on our way some workers let us know there was no wait to meet Anna and Elsa, so we headed in. The kids were pretty excited to see them and chat with them. I wish Trent had made it back in time.
Then we headed to Olaf's Snow Fest. It's hard to tell, but it's snowing here. It would snow every half hour or so. We were in line to meet Olaf during the snowfall, but the kids got to play in it after.
Look at that cheesy smile of Aiden's :)
Playing in the snow.
Trent and Aiden even got to sled down the snow slide, but I couldn't get a picture :/
Then we went to the Frozen Sing-Along, which was actually so fun! You betcha we were singing along ;)
It started to snow at the end and Aiden was so excited! Trying to catch a snowflake on his tongue :)
And then we headed to Cars Land. We were most excited about this for Aiden, and Janie for that matter.
We thought we'd get a big reaction out of Aiden when we entered, but he didn't give us much. He's a lot like me..ha. But he definitely liked it! He was just soaking it in ;)
We got to meet Mater!
And Red. I actually really love this picture with the sun rays! We could hardly ever get Janie to look at the camera. Too much to look at!
This picture got really washed out, but Janie wanted my sunglasses ;)
We went on Mater's Junkyard Jamboree - 1 of 2 rides in Cars Land. Aiden rode with Tanis and we rode with Janie. We were cracking up the whole time because it really whips you around!
Janie just decided she needed to take a little break ;)
Meeting Lightning :)
We had lunch at Flo's V8 Cafe. The kids and I got mac 'n' cheese (I'm a lover) and I also got a chocolate shake :)
We were pleasantly surprised afterward when we found out Aiden could go on Soarin' Over California with us!
He was so excited :)
A few different times Aiden told us this was his favorite ride of the whole trip :)
Janie loved running around with Grandma and Grandpa while we were on the ride. Look at that smile!
We got the parent swap passes so Aiden actually got to go again when Tanis and Kent went. Lucky boy!
Then it was time to take our Fastpasses to the much talked about Radiator Springs Racers. We were so excited b/c since Aiden was able to go on Soarin' we figured he'd be able to go on this one after all! They checked him very carefully, but let him through! Yay!
Aiden told us he had to pee while we were in line, so that made us a little nervous. Also, he told us at the end that he didn't like the 3 little hills..haha.
Trent hurried off to the bathroom with Aiden and we handed off our parent swap passes to Tanis and Kent. They were ready to take Aiden again, but they got up there and this cast member actually denied Aiden!! We couldn't believe it, he had literally just gotten off the ride..haha. Oh well, we were happy he at least got to go once!
While Tanis and Kent were riding we headed back to get a picture of the front of the gingerbread house like I mentioned at the beginning of this post.
Then we actually headed back to the hotel for naps. And later we had dinner at the Cheesecake Factory.
We made a quick stop back at the hotel to grab the stroller before heading back to the park. Trent actually decided to stay behind. His ear was killing him. I didn't mention at the beginning of this post, but a few days prior to our trip we all started to feel kind of crummy. I was so worried we were going to have a repeat trip from that last time we came to Disney in 2012 (I felt yucky the whole time). I prayed so much before our trip that we'd all be able to feel well enough that we'd be able to enjoy Disneyland. Thankfully we did, but by Saturday night it was catching up to Trent again :/
We left Trent to rest at the hotel and the rest of us headed back to the park.
Our first stop was actually at the Lost and Found. Earlier I realized we were missing Aiden's jacket and then I had the sudden realization that I had draped it over his legs the night before and it must've gotten kicked off while we were making our way through the crazy crowds leaving the park. I was so impressed that they had it! Disney, I tell ya!
We headed back to Cars Land. It's just so fun to see at night!
It was so fun to see Lightning driving down the street!
It's amazing the exact details in Cars Land!
Then we headed next door to Bugs Land and rode some kiddie rides (Francis' Ladybug Boogie, Flik's Flyers, and Heimlich's Chew Chew Train). I was glad Janie could ride all of these since she had ridden the least rides of any of us, not that she really noticed, but still!
And then it was time to get in line with our Fastpasses for World of Color (water show).
I was kind of sad that both kids had fallen asleep. Aiden especially would have loved seeing clips from so many movies he loves!
Ending off with the World of Color definitely tugged at our heartstrings some. We were sad to be ending our trip!
The next morning we got packed up and hit the road.
A humongous thank you to Tanis and Kent for bringing us to Disneyland, especially Aiden and Janie for their first time! We had such a wonderful time!!
Trent says next time, though, we'll have to spend two days in Disneyland. California Adventure can be done in a day, but there is just too much to do in Disneyland!!