Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Report on Disneyland.

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We had a wonderful family trip to Disneyland! We left last Monday morning and got home Saturday night. I'm just now digging my way out from under the laundry and mail to take time to share some pictures.

The family just after we entered Disneyland

New entrance to Disney California Adventure

This visit we especially enjoyed Disney California Adventure. The park is in the middle of a $1.1 billion expansion and enhancement endeavor, and the parts that are done are fabulous. Disney had just unveiled a new entrance to California Adventure days before we arrived, and I loved the music that was playing just inside the gates. All of it was California-themed. I'm trying to locate a playlist, but the ones I can remember are:

26 Miles by the Four Preps
San Fernando Valley by Bing Crosby
Do You Know the Way to San José by Dionne Warwick
The Little Old Lady from Pasadena by Jan and Dean
Hollywood Nights by Bob Seger
California Dreamin' by The Mamas and the Papas
San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair) by Scott McKenzie
and Surfin' USA by the Beach Boys

I used a really slick app on my iPhone called SoundHound to identify the ones I didn't know. I just held it up while a song was playing and in a few seconds it had identified the title and artist. Very handy!

Since DCA is a fairly new park, everything there is completely handicap accessible. This was great with Vivian as there were several rides we could take her on without having to get her out of her stroller (fewer transitions equates to fewer meltdowns with Vivian). We also had a Guest Assistance Pass that allowed us to use the handicap entrances at Disneyland and to wait in a quiet area when there were long lines; that pass was a godsend with Vivian.

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A DCA Cast Member loading Vivian onto a chariot on the brand new Little Mermaid ride (that was very cute!). They had me get into my seat in the chariot first, and I was so nervous that Vivian would get upset before the sweet unsuspecting girl got her into the vehicle. Fortunately that didn't happen!

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On board the chariot. I am trying to buckle our seatbelt in case Vivian decides to try and escape before the ride is over

Dots and Will seemed to enjoy themselves. Dots loved having her picture taken with the Disney characters. She and Will both loved the ElecTRONica music and special effects show at night in DCA and were big fans of the California Screamin' roller coaster. I haven't ridden a roller coaster in years, but I even enjoyed that one, though I only rode it once where the two of them went upwards of ten times over the course of the week.

Dots & Disney friends
Dots and her Disney friends

Dots and Will in Fantasyland

The family sans me in the Paradise Pier area of DCA. California Screamin' is behind them

I was a bit disappointed that Vivian didn't enjoy Disneyland more. She seemed to *endure* our time there rather than revel in it. Tuesday morning Vivian was especially out of sorts. It was difficult to get her onto any rides, even though we were attempting things she should have liked (Dumbo, Casey Jr. Train, Carousel, etc.). We were on the Disneyland Train heading to meet Will (whom I had let sleep in so that I didn't have to deal with another grumpy child) when seemingly out of the blue Vivian melted down, threw herself out of her stroller and started to fuss about getting off the train (not an option as it was moving). Robert was able to calm Vivian down and get her back into her stroller where she fell asleep. Not ten minutes later she had a seizure (Vivian also had another one after I took her back to the hotel to recoup). I should have known something was stirred up in Vivian's little brain as she really was not herself that morning. Vivian did better as the week went on, but she never stopped asking her to go home. She eventually started getting on rides in the hopes, I think, that each would deliver her home! Since we've been home, however, she has said Disneyland was fun and will recount a couple of the rides she liked if asked.

Vivian on the Jungle Cruise

Vivian with Robert and Dots on the Casey Jr Train

Our family's favorite thing this trip was certainly the World of Color fountain show at DCA. My pictures don't do the spectacle justice, and it is also difficult to describe. 1200 fountains are choreographed with lights and Disney music and videos. The show was simply amazing. My reticent teenaged son told me he used up the last of his phone's memory trying to video World of Color. He even requested that we go back to see it again the next night (which we did). You can read a little more about the show here: World of Color.

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World of Color

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World of Color

Robert commented that he enjoyed this trip even more than Hawaii. That's saying a lot!

Robert and Vivian near Indiana Jones - my favorite ride at Disneyland apart from Peter Pan

Robert and Dots on the Disneyland Railroad

I'm a bit sad that our Disney vacation is over and am already plotting to go back after the construction at Disney California Adventure is complete. Perhaps by that time I'll have finished the laundry and mail from this trip!


Stay tuned for more pictures...


Ruby's Fairy Godmother said...

Beautiful photos...beautiful family. I'm glad Miss Vivian only had the one bad day. Sounds like has she great memories!!
I especially love Dots Chi O tee shirt!

Unknown said...

sounds like a lovely trip, eloise! thanks for sharing!

melissabinmo said...

DL looks great. We were in San Diego for spring break and debated going whether or not to go up to DL. Wish we would have after seeing your post.

Gigi said...

What a fun trip! Can't believe that Robert liked it more than Hawaii.

Anonymous said...

Disneyland is one of my favorite vacations. Since we live in California we get to go more than typical but not as often as I like because of the expense! It looks like you had a wonderful time. I haven't seen World of Color yet. I'm planning to get down there in October. Hope it works out. I'm glad Vivian is ok after her seizures. It has to be so scary to have that happen at home, let alone in a strange place. =(

BTW, your family photos turned out so beautiful. Thank you for sharing your adventure!