Monday, May 31, 2010

Our Trip to Disneyland

(The kiddies with grandma. Too cute.)

Did you ever go somewhere for the summer? Like grandma's house or a cousin's house for a few weeks? Or a cabin or boat house? I'm talking not just a week long vacation. I'm talking spending some serious time away from home for the summer. Somewhere you consider to be like a second home. I did. Since I was a tiny little girl, my dad was the set designer for the Children's Miracle Network Telethon broadcasted live from Disneyland. This meant he would have to spend a week or so in Disneyland setting up, broadcasting the telethon, and taking it all down afterword. Of COURSE the whole family would join him for this particular business trip. After the telethon was finished, Daddy needed a full vacation too so we would tack on another week or ten days at Disneyland. We grew up a family from Utah with annual passes in our name each year and all those days in Anaheim were spent in the park. Later during the year my mom would get antsy and we would usually go back one or two more times for 3 or 4 days a visit. This meant we had plenty of time to lounge in the shade, take our time, and relax at Disneyland. Most families were running from line to line, eating on the go, and leaving the park sore and exhausted at the end of the day. Our experience was much different. We got to know every nook and cranny of Disneyland. We would pretend we were orphans that lived in New Orleans Square or runaways that lived on Tom Sawyer's Island. Most kids had grandma's tree house in the back yard as their play area for the summer. We had the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse to run through and cause mischief. Disneyland was our playground. It truly is my second home and it will always be where my heart is. It is so much more than a theme park to me. The smells, the sounds, and the beauty found there are a part of me. My sisters and I often tell people the Disneyland "calls to us". I'm sure they think we are crazy. But sometimes I will be in the kitchen doing the dishes and I will suddenly smell the vanilla on Main Street or hear the Swiss Polka that plays in line on the Matterhorn or see Snow White's wishing well next to the castle. I can practically feel the cobblestone under my feet!! This is Disneyland calling to me and it is a cruel and painful experience when our bank account is shouting back "Absolutely NOT!!" This is why I need to win the lottery.

We just returned from a five day vacation to Disneyland. Not NEARLY long enough for me (or my cute husband who TOTALLY understands the magic of Disneyland) but it was sufficient to feed the intense addiction for a little while. Some wonderful things happened there!

Wonderful thing #1. Finn learned how to drink from a straw at the Big Thunder Mountain Barbeque Ranch. YESSS!

Wonderful thing #2. I felt the very first flutter of sweet baby number 4 when it was startled by the fireworks. How cute and awesome is THAT?!! (By the way, I am pregnant)

Wonderful thing #3. Henry got picked to be in the Jedi Training show in Tomorrowland! Hilarious and tear jerking all at once. It was serious business as you will see in the pictures below.

Wonderful thing #4. We were ALL sick with a terrible stomach flu (or violent germs as Maggie would say) on the drive to Disneyland, but miraculously enjoyed perfect health through out the remainder of our trip!

Wonderful thing #5. Maggie pointed out to me how beautiful and charming the evening lighting is in Adventureland. My children are beginning to understand the importance of beauty and atmosphere!! It's not just about the rides to my FIVE year old! The apple doesn't fall far from the tree folks. (Of course it can't hurt that the larger apple constantly points out to the smaller apple that there is beauty all around them every day.)

So that was our trip. And thanks to Grandma, Grandpa, The Tim McDowells, "Unca" James, and our beloved Deakins, it was a trip these apples will never forget.

WARNING: There are 26 pictures following this post for your viewing pleasure. I know it's a lot but trust me, it's whittled down to the bare essentials as there were over 700 pictures to choose from. Also, please note the last picture, Buzz with Mickey ears copping a feel on the blue pixie. You love it.