After we got registered and settled into our hotel room we made our way to the park. Before we went very far I pulled out a sharpie marker to give my kids a tattoo! It was a hard one for the kids to swallow because it has never been acceptable for them to write on their skin, but this weekend was an exception to the rule!
I was going to make some rub on tattoos but the more I thought of it I realised that it could rub off on their clothes or might start to fade as they got wet on some of the rides so I just opted for a plain old sharpie. I wrote: I belong to (and then my cell number). You like to think that nothing will ever happen, that you can watch your children every single second that you’re in the park, but reality calls for you to be cautious. I will forever be thankful that we did this because we did end up loosing Emma for about 20 minutes on our first day.
It was so much fun to see all the Halloween decorations out on Main Street! I think Halloween and Christmas time might be one of the best times to come to Disneyland. The extra decorations at those times seem to create a whole other sense of excitement and wonder for the kids.
We made our first stop at the Tiki Tiki Room! We were able to get our bearings and plan the next few stops. Uncle Gordon had downloaded a very convenient app for his phone that gave us the wait times for each of the rides at Disneyland and California adventure. We were constantly referring back to that. I think that’s a must for anyone going to the parks with small kids!
The last time we went to Disneyland Benjamin was 3, Emma turned 2 while we were there, and Joseph was 9 months old. It was less than desirable because I was still nursing Joseph, they were so small and got tired so quickly that we were holding them or pushing them in the stroller all the time, trying to maneuver a stroller in summer Disney traffic was not ideal, they were so young non of them remember anything, and the kids weren’t tall enough for any of the rides. I vowed I would never go back!
This trip was a miracle because I realised how much more enjoyable it was going to be with the kids so much older. They all four walked the park the entire time. Jacob rode Jared’s shoulders a couple of times but did most of the walking on his own. Benjamin and Joseph rode every single ride and Emma had a few exceptions due to her height. So crazy that her younger brother got to ride rides that she couldn’t because she’s smaller than him 🙂 .
It was so wonderful to see their faces light up when they’d see the different characters. It was even nicer to see that my seven, almost eight, year old wasn’t too old or too cool for that. I’m dreading the day when his innocence is gone.
Winnie the Pooh and his whole gang became one of Jacob’s favorite characters to see. The kids haven’t had a whole lot of exposure to Pooh but we watched the new movie when we got home and they LOVED it. It became Benjamin’s new favorite movie. There was some quick humor in the movie that was looked over by the younger kids but he got it. It was great to hear him laughing at the right spots and really understanding what they were talking about. Of course, this means that there are other movies that we can’t watch around him incase he starts to understand things that are above his age level.
We hit the Indiana Jones ride with Benjamin and Joseph while Emma and Jacob took a safari tour! Benjamin and Joseph enjoyed the ride but they thought it was a bit bumpy (which it was). It seemed like Joseph was up to just about any and every ride as long as he had his other half with him 🙂 ! It was amazing how quickly Joseph took to Uncle Gordon. I know that he’s an awesome uncle but my kids haven’t spent a ton of time with him. I don’t know what kind of relationship I was expecting they’d form, but I sure wasn’t prepared for the level of attachment that Joseph formed with him. He was always holding his hand, snuggling into his hoodie with him, and at one point he lost him in line and he looked around with real concern and said “Wait! Where’s my Gordon?” I think that summed it up, Gordon belonged to Joseph for the weekend!!!
Joseph wasn’t the only that was attached to Gordon. When he got the chance, Jacob would climb into Gordon’s arms for a ride. He knew Gordon would hold him while Jared and I made him walk. Jacob never got tired of standing in line when Gordon was around. Gordon always has a stick of gum in his mouth and that somehow turned into a game with Jacob. He would belly laugh whenever Gordon would blow a bubble and then let it get so big that it would pop! He didn’t even mind it when Gordon spit on him 🙂 (picture above and to the right).
So, like I said earlier, Gordon got Joseph to do just about every ride. That included Space Mountain!!! I like rollercoasters as much as everyone else, but there’s something about riding around at top speeds, in the dark, that doesn’t sit well with me. Joseph was all for it because it had to do with space. He became incredibly obsessed with Star Wars about a weeks before we were off to Disneyland. His 5th birthday at the Johnson house was proof of that.
Jacob and I hung back and played around while everyone else was screaming their heads off. We made our own fun with a rope chain.
The big ride that the boys could hardly wait to go on was Star Tours!!! Since they’re whole lives have been consumed by Star Wars, this was the ride that was high on our to-do list. In fact, we did it several times over!!! I have never been so sick 🙂 . I had to take my 3D glasses off at points because I was getting so motion sick. Joseph and the other kids had no problem and enjoyed themselves immensely. They especially loved it when my picture was plastered on the screen and I was identified as the “Rebel Spy”. You should have seen Joseph’s face. He was thrilled!!! I think we’ll have to watch the original Star Wars movies in the very near future!
Maybe because I’ve had a love affair with the movie ever since it came out but either way I thought the Nemo ride was wonderful! I’d heard good and bad things about the ride but my children are so infatuated with that movie that I think it was a big success. I think it helped that we were all a little tired of walking around and it gave us a nice 10-15 minute break from walking and the glaring sun! I might be singing a different tune if we had waited in line for longer than our 20 minute wait.
We finished out the night by heading to Toon Town!!!
I have to say, as cute as it was and as kid friendly as it was, it didn’t seem to hold the kids’ attention as much as some of the other places in Disneyland. That’s not to say that they didn’t enjoy themselves at all because they did. They had a blast, but when it was time to go they didn’t put up a fight like they did for some of the other rides. I think my mom and dad had about as much fun as the kids! It was so much fun to watch them run around with the kids and play with the interactive areas. I love how Disneyland brings that out in people!
As fun as the entire day was, it was nice to go back to the hotel room and get a few hours of sleep. I don’t know if it was the beds or if it was because I was running off of 4 hours of sleep, but it seemed like the minute my head hit the pillow I was out. It must have been the beds because the same thing happened to the kids.
It was such a magical day! I’m so glad that we were able to do this with the kids at this point in their lives! I’m glad that they will appreciate and remember this so much more than the last time. I’m even more thrilled that we have an entire day here tomorrow!!! Can’t wait!!!