The Happiest Place on Earth!

So I’m finally getting around to the Disneyland post. Sorry for the delay! Honestly? It was an absolutely amazing 3 days. A bit crazy at times, and far different from the Disney experiences of teenage and college years, but worth every minute of it!

We made amazing time headed down there. Boy do car trips go better when you have toddlers who don’t require a bottle every 3 hours! There were a couple of monkey-related issues, but otherwise it was a issue-free trip. We might need to get one of those grabber things for Aiden so he can retrieve toys for us (like this) in the future!

We got there in such good time, in fact, that we arrived before the room was ready. You know, the big giant room where they had to move a small table so that we could fit three cribs. That room. It was pretty awesome, though, and now I’m kicking myself for not taking a picture. There was a curtain to seperate a lowered area of the room where we put the cribs, so we were actually able to put them down early and not have to sleep ourselves quite yet (though we did anyways).

We waited around a little bit, got into the room, unpacked, loaded up the stroller, and off we went!

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Once in the park we were off! One of our good friends from Washington was actually in town at the same time so we lucked out and got to spend a lot of the first two days with them, which was wonderful!

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We, of course, had to find the Star Wars area. Aiden said that he wanted to do that ride first, and daddy didn’t object. I think I saw a beam of pride as well. The Storm Troopers were out and found his R2D2 sweatshirt immediately and took to him!

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In past trips to theme parks, it’s always been ride after ride with nothing in between except waiting in line. With four kids? You start to enjoy more of the magic of it. The parades were a big hit (Jaina wanted to take off after them). And the kids really enjoyed the music and lights!

Of course, there were rides as well.

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There was actually only one ride that Aiden wasn’t able to do, but that was okay because the line was over 2 hours long for it anyways! We had a lot of fun enjoying the kids rides with short waits, and took turns taking him on rides while the other person hung out with the kids.

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Part of the fun going was that it was still decorated with all the holiday goodness. There were lights, decorations, and the cars in CarsLand were wearing Santa Hats. How much cooler could it get?!

Day 2 began nice and early and we had to rock the princess dresses and mickey tights. The first day we didn’t do too well with the napping in the stroller, but by day 2 even Jacen gave in and decided some sleep would be worth it!

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There were a lot more rides, some more time spent with our friends, and a lot of fun to be had that day. The benefits of the park hopper pass and Disneyland is that you can actually go back and forth between the parks all day, so Aiden got to ride the Buzz lightyear ride umpteen nine times while still enjoying our fastpasses in California Adventures.

Back track to how we told the kids about the trip – we had Aiden open up a package with some Mickey and Minnie shirts that a friend had made us. It wasn’t as effective as they make it look on TV (no jumping up and down, no screams, no real excitement at all actually until we explained it), but they were adorable for our last and final day there!

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We even managed to get a family picture or two, which is pretty unheard of. It was quite nice to have all of us in a photo!

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Overall, the magic of Disneyland still exists. It was there for the children in the music and rides and parades. For us in watching their faces light up as they tried to comprehend why the characters from that magic box at home that makes noise and shows movies were full size and standing in front of them. It was there for the newly engaged girl who had just been proposed to in front of the castle (in the group of people behind Aiden’s head in the picture). It’s so much better this way than just running ride to ride. While you are more frustrated by tourists and crazy people in the mobs of people at the park, it’s also refreshing to see all of the laughs and smiles from kids and adults alike. I mean, it’s the happiest place on earth, right? I can’t wait to take them back in a few years and see how much it (and they) have changed!

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