Saturday, March 26, 2011

Our Adventures in Disneyland

A few months ago, Rich and I decided we should go to my college roommate's wedding on the first Saturday of spring break in Sacramento. Then I started thinking, "Why don't we just keep driving and take our kids to Disneyland?" So Rich asked me to come up with an estimate of how much it would cost and then gave me the go-ahead to plan our family trip. We did it extremely cheap. We got a super price on our hotel through priceline, brought in all of our own food, and overall had a great time.

I have a theory, though, that it could have been a dream vacation if we had spent 3 times as much by staying in a Disneyland hotel, bought all our food, and helped ourselves to any souvenirs we wanted. However, it would have been just that - a dream! This made it possible. Not to say that others shouldn't have their dream vacation, but this is how we did it and it was still a great family time.

I bought the girls Disney shirts on sale before we went left. They each had a new shirt every day for about the price of one of the shirts in the park. I love Mary Poppins! She was in the entrance on our first morning. Daddy and his girls :) One of the best things about our trip was that my parents came with us. It was so fun to have them! And it turned out to be an extra blessing that my mom broke her foot before we left Oregon. Bummer for her, but it caused her to need to rent a wheelchair and since she was in a wheelchair, we went to the front of every line! Mom, I promise we would have been glad to have you with us, even without the wheelchair!
Teacups! This is when it started raining.
Thankfully, this only lasted about an hour. I'm not sure we would have had a lot of fun if it had rained that whole day.
The girls taking a turn in Nana's wheelchair.
Gotta get a picture with Goofy!

It was so funny when we saw Minnie. I caught a glimpse of her and started dragging the girls and running! I'm so glad we got a picture with her.
Avery and her Daddy on the Jungle Cruise.
I tried several times to get a good picture in front of the castle of our family. Not only did the kids not cooperate, but you can't even see the castle very well.
My parents took the girls on a couple rides while Rich and I got a little date. It was so nice! We rode the Matterhorn (and had to wait 45 min. since my mom wasn't with us :) and shared a frozen lemonade in the sunshine.
One of my favorite things we did was the Princess Fantasy Faire. We waited in line for an hour and it lasted about 4 minutes. We didn't buy dress up stuff, get their hair done, or get their faces painted. But it was so great! Avery was so happy when Ariel was there. This was 2 days before Avery's birthday and we got her a birthday button to wear. In this picture, Allie is explaining to Ariel that it isn't really Avery's birthday.
I love this one!

Tianna from "The Princess and the Frog"
We were so happy to have Nana and Papa with us.
Here's another try at a great family pic.

I'm so glad we did this. The drives there and back were nuts - snow and rain and thunderstorms. But it made for an adventure. My kids were amazing on the drive. I don't believe we will be a Disneyland family, but we sure had a great time!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Feeling slightly crafty

We will be celebrating Avery's birthday one day early this year, since we'll be in Disneyland. We'll be driving all day on her actual birthday and it would just be a shame to not celebrate it early while we're in "the happiest place on earth"! So I made her a shirt, in case the park is stingy and doesn't let her have a birthday button. I bought this shirt with the cupcake on it for $5 at Walmart and made my own appliques with some double-sided webbing and free-handed the letters. I can't wait for her to wear it!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Disney Adventure is Almost Here!!!

That's right. We're actually getting to go to Disneyland! It's a trip I honestly thought probably wouldn't happen until my kids were twice the age they are now. We have the privilege of attending my freshman college roommate's wedding in Sacramento on the first Saturday of spring break. I got the wild idea to bring our kids with us and then keep on driving! My wonderful parents are meeting up with us after the wedding and doing Disney with us. Needless to say, we are beyond excited! Allie has just turned 5 and our last day in the park is the day before Avery's 7th birthday. I think they are at a great age to enjoy the park. A year or two ago would have been too hard, since they were still napping. And I just don't think we'd have had as much fun.

So I've done a few things to prepare. I'm making a map of our trip for them to mark our progress. I'm making a bingo game of things they will see on the way. I bought a kids atlas with activities for them for every state in the US. I've also purchased Disney shirts ahead of time - enough for each girl to have a new shirt every day. And Disney sunglasses... Oh, and I'm so excited about this one: a Minnie mouse jibitz (those little accessories for Crocs) for each of the girls - we love our Crocs!

So I'm looking for some more ideas for our trip. Tips on Disneyland? Tips for a road trip? I'd like some ideas for food - we're hoping to bring a lot of our own. I'm even planning on bringing a toaster for the hotel. Snack ideas? Games for the car? Anything!!!