Monday, October 3, 2011

The Great Disney Adventure

This post is going to be long. At least I think it will. So you can stop now and just know that the short version is we went, we had fun and we survived. All good things! :)

The long version is that about 6 weeks ago I had this crazy dream after talking to my neighbor that we (Kent and I) could do Disneyland. It seemed like it would be so much fun and that the kids would freak out.
So after checking into the prices and deals I pulled the trigger one Saturday night. I felt both giddy and sick at the same time. Can you feel that?! Well I did.

Then started the great Disney research. I swear I emailed, facebooked and read every website that would give me all the tips and tricks to taking young kids, toddlers and twins to Disneyland. To say I was a bit obsessed would be an understatement!

Fast forward to last Tuesday after school. We picked Emma up from school and had all the bags packed and loaded in the car. We told the kids we were going on a trip and that the big surprise was Disneyland. Emma seemed totally overwhelmed and Claire just freaked out! She kept saying "I am going to meet Tinkerbelle!"

We flew with all 4 kids and it went great. We were a bit of a circus but I am used to people staring at me when I am out with the kids. Kent...not as much.

We spent 3 days at Disneyland. Had lunch at Aeriel's Grotto which was actually pretty good, saw 3 parades, fireworks, the World of Color show and also trick or treated at Disneyland. By the time Friday night hit I had hit my overload button of everything Disney. It was a blast though and I am so glad we did it.

The kids tonight were telling us all their favorite things they did. Emma loved meeting all the characters and getting their autographs. I thought she was going to die when she met Jessie from Toy Story! Claire seriously loved everything. Except for the new Aeriel's ride. It was the first ride she did and I think she was overwhelmed by the huge Ursela and burst into tears! Needless to say she did not want to ride that one the rest of the time. On Friday afternoon she told me "Mom. I think I will give it one more try." She did it and loved it. I was so proud of her!

The boys were seriously so funny. Like total boys they just hung out and went with the flow of what the girls wanted to do. They were thrilled with whatever person they met and whichever ride they went on. They were actually pretty easy since they had no agenda or opinion of what or where to go. They really loved the Aerial ride as well as anything Toy Story related. They were so cute and were so much fun!

Kent was a total trooper and a great sport. He is not a Disney fan period. I think it is a safe bet to say he did not catch the "Magic" but still went through the exhaustion of the trip for his kids and me. I once again have realized how lucky I am to have married him. He was a great support!

My Tips and Tricks for Disney are these:
1. You can plan all you want but seriously it will not work out the way you think. Just go with the flow.
2. Watch out for the people on mopeds. They mean business and they will run over your small child/children if your not watching!
3. Churros and Corn Dogs do taste better at Disneyland. I don't know why but it is worth the $$.
4. Once you are sucked in you will not get out. Try as you might you will need to allow yourself at least an hour to exit the park. You keep seeing things you need to check out or buy or just try once. It is mission impossible!
5. This is a tip I think I will hopefully try the next time we go. (yes. there will be a next time it just might not be for 5 years!) I am hoping that next time we will be able to stay at the Grand California Hotel. I am thinking it will be worth the extra $$ to not have to drive/walk/shuttle anywhere in the morning or at night. Especially with 2 strollers.

If you have stuck with me this long...Thank you! I am totally impressed!!!


The two of us... said...

There is just pure joy in those little smiles... so worth the exhaustion and Disney overload.

Liz Hoke said...

So cute!!! Can I go next time... and Kent.. seriously is he ever not a trooper, he is amazing, you both are such great parents!!
Great great idea and great execution!

Natty said...

I'm so glad your kiddos loved it! It is an exhausting trip, but it sounded like it was worth it to your kiddos. I think we will wait to try our Disneyland adventure again until the twinners are beyond infancy...we stayed at the Grand Californian (or whatever its called) and it was nice to be that close. I think the remodeled Disneyland hotel would be really nice too...a bit further away, but a bit cheaper too. Your family is darling! Was it decorated for Halloween already? I think that would be a fun time to go.

Padgett Hoke said...

I loved that post, and am so impressed at your trip! I got tired just reading about it, how you manage is beyond me! You and Kent make the perfect team, with four little ones that just keep on getting cuter!

allypally said...

Wow! You met loads of characters. Bet the girls were in heaven!

Lillibet said...

Maria, congratulations to you and Kent both. Lucky lucky children! I always remember pulling into the parking lot at Disneyland when I was about 12, and Mom looking out at all the cars: "Isn't it amazing that all of these people had the same idea as us to come here today??" So typical of Mom.

SSWS said...

Great photos! So happy you made it home safely, can't wait to hear the play by play...come over!

Sarah and Trent said...

Ah FUNNNN!!! I'm so excited, we're going in a week~ I'm stoked for the Halloween stuff.
Your dream sounds like the Disneyland commercial where the parents are looking online while their kids are asleep~ "We could do that!"

Ben and Melissa Ellis said...

I want to take Logan there so badly. Thanks for all your tips. You guys are such cute parents and I am impressed you got this up so quick. I was thinking the other day about you guys and wondering how it went.

Michelle said...

Good for you! What a fun trip,and you must have stood in the big princess lines, double congrats!

Becca Jo said...

I missed this post in October! How fun. I love the spontaneous vacation idea. I hope I do it sometime.