Posts Tagged ‘disney’

A California Adventure

June 26, 2014

We are nearly home! And what better place to pause and celebrate our amazing trip than Anaheim, California?

Yesterday was a very looooong day.  We flew from Baltimore to Los Angeles via Chicago.  We allowed lots of time to get to the airport and go through security, so we had an early morning.  The first flight went smoothly enough, but we were delayed in Chicago for over an hour, and had to fly around “some weather” so arrived about 90 minutes late.  Babess & Fainjin both fell asleep in the shuttle to our hotel.

This morning we had breakfast in the hotel restaurant (kids eat free! all of them! as long as I order from the menu, which isn’t expensive – breakfast cost me less than ice-creams did later in the day at the theme park) then walked to California Adventure via Downtown Disney.

Almost as soon as we walked into the park we were having our photos taken with Mickey Mouse & Goofy… and the day continued in similar vein.  We rode rides, watched shows, posed with characters, and simmered in the hot sun – 29ºC today, but at least it’s not humid like Maryland.

The kids’ favourite ride… hmmm, it’s hard to pin down.  Perhaps the “floating tire” ride in Cars Land – the giant tires are hovercraft and a bit like bumper cars so great fun.  They also loved the bumper cars in Bug Land, and Ariel’s Grotto (even Fainjin liked it!).

The least favourite is much easier to name: “It’s Tough to be a Bug” was labelled “may frighten small children” and it certainly did. Babess sobbed for a good 5-10 minutes afterwards.  Pearl didn’t like it much either, screaming her head off at the spiders (she was by no means alone in that) but able to laugh about it after the show.  Fainjin thought it was pretty cool though.

We have come back to the hotel after a long day out, eaten, washed and the kids have fallen straight asleep.  I’m planning a less-intense day tomorrow, hopefully with a rest in the middle of it so we can see the fireworks tomorrow night.

There are some photos of today – but both cameras we had with us ran out of juice during the day, so they are charging at the moment & I will upload the photos later.

© UpsideBackwards 2014.


June 14, 2011

I managed to keep the fact that we were going to Disneyland a secret from Pearl right up until we were on our way from LAX to Anaheim.  She was half-asleep in the car when our lovely friend asked which of the hotels “near Disneyland” we were staying in.  She sat bolt upright, her eyes like saucers, and looked enquiringly at me, holding her breath.

“Yes,” I admitted, “we are going to Disneyland.”

She didn’t seem too unhappy at the thought…

We arrived at our hotel just as the fireworks started.  The concierge directed Pearl to a good vantage point to watch while I dealt with the formalities.  And then we crashed into bed, having flown 14 hours that day as well as a 90-minute train ride and lots of time in airports and security, immigration and customs lines.

I didn’t expect to enjoy Disneyland much.  I expected long lines, cheesy insincere smiles, and tiresome crowds.  But I knew that Pearl would love it.

I had a great time!

We spent most of our time in FantasyLand and ToonTown, but explored the rest of the park as well over our two days there.  We met lots of characters, some because we stood in long lines to do so, and some just wandering around.  The lines were tolerable (except for one that turned out to be quite a bit longer than the sign at the beginning had promised).  The smiles were sincere, or at least incredibly realistic.  The staff, sorry – “cast members”, were unfailingly polite and charming and really seemed to enjoy their jobs.

Pearl meets Rapunzel

Pearl is exactly the right age to enjoy and remember Disneyland, and she was walking on air to meet her favourite princesses.  She found the Sleeping Beauty castle walk-through to be surprisingly scary (as did other children we encountered hurrying for the exit!), but loved the carousel and It’s A Small World.

It's A Small World - New Zealand!

On the second morning, I had booked us in for Breakfast with Minnie in the Park.  That was a very worth-while exercise.  We got into the park before everyone else, and went straight to the restaurant.  As we arrived at our table, we were greeted by Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother and Eeyore, and while we enjoyed our buffet breakfast other characters came and visited us and spent time at our table.  They signed Pearl’s autograph book, posed for photos, gave hugs, and occasionally got up and danced.

Pearl, Fairy Godmother, Chip, and Eeyore's ear

My favourite memory of this part of the trip is the way Pearl clutched my arm at the exit of It’s A Small World, and – eyes shining brightly – exclaimed, “That was AWESOME!”

Fireworks behind Sleeping Beauty's Castle

Disclosure:  Our visit to Disneyland, and Breakfast with Minnie, as indeed our whole trip, were at our own expense.  I was not asked to review our visit or write this post, and Disney is unaware I have done so (at least until they read it here!).  I have neither sought nor been offered compensation in any form for this post.

© UpsideBackwards 2011.

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