Wow! What a wonderful time we had in Disneyland! “Year
of a Million Dreams” is absolutely right!
I don’t think I could convey the magic and wonder we all felt during our
trip this time, but I’m going to try. We
arrived Saturday afternoon and after briefly settling in the hotel, we hit the
park! Sophie was so excited to see the
castle and thought everything from the train depot to city hall was it! I had heard Nemo’s
Submarine Voyage will be very difficult to ride without a very long wait so we
first went to the back of Tomorrow
Land to check out the
line. Yep, long line. We were all very hungry from the long trip
down and stopped at the nearest lunch counter for a cheeseburger. Then it started to rain. Ick…but maybe it’ll
thin the crowds… As we’re
eating (near the Jedi
Darth Vader, Darth Maul, a storm trooper and some Jedi Knights emerged for
autographs and pictures. The line
formed so fast; we didn’t stay. We had
more important people to meet. Sophie had to use the restroom and en route
to find the potty she spotted Ariel. Off
we went to wait in line to talk to Ariel.
I think that may have been the longest we waited in any line the entire
time we were there and that was about 20 minutes.
Sophie wanted to know
Ariel’s favorite color and what is her favorite piece from her human collection. Ariel said blue like the sea and the dinglehopper (fork).
After Ariel, we rode Dumbo (Sophie’s favorite
ride) and then we headed back to Toon Town
to let the kids play on/in the ridiculously cute props there.
Beep. I think there’s a fire around here somewhere…
little help here, Finn?
the Dog Pound
really wants that car to come off Mickey’s side table
Minnie gets her fashion tips from “Jessica’s Secret”
While we’re goofing off
(no pun intended) in Toon
Town, I found 2 Fast
Pass tickets on the ground for Space Mountain
later that night. Of course, Abby gallantly
volunteered to help me use them. By now
the parade was going and we decided it would be a good time to ride the
bobsleds of Matterhorn. Whee! As we were rounding to the end of our ride, a
bell rings and the track under the sled ahead of ours shifts to the right and
the cast members working say to them, “Does everybody want to ride again?” And off they go on another turn of the Matterhorn! Lucky
ducks. After a turn on the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, it’s
time to use our fast passes to Space
Mountain. It was great fun and after seeing the people
ahead of us on the Matterhorn get to go again, Abby and I started chanting, “One
more time.” As we rounded the corner to the disembarking platform, a bell rang
and our spaceship slips right on past the platform. Yay! We got to ride again! Those were the best fast passes I ever found!
Sunday was the blue
ribbon day at Disneyland. Finn woke us all up entirely too early. At 5:30 a.m. he sat up in bed and, delighted
to see me sleeping next to him, said, “Hi, Mom.” Those are clearest words I’d heard out of him
yet. Sophie started the day in high
spirits because Sunday was the day for our scheduled Princess Dinner and that
meant she got to wear her Aurora
dress that I made for her. She looked so
cute and you could tell she felt like a million bucks! She walked so stately and batted her
eyelashes and accepted all praise with a very humble and polite, “Thank you.” Despite the rain, we had a great morning and
rode Pirates of the Carribean and Splash Mountain
(Sophie and Finn rode Pooh Bear ride instead with Grandma and Auntie Cheryl).
Pooh outside the Pooh Bear ride
Meeting Eeyore outside the Pooh
Bear ride. Grandma
thought Eeyore looked sad, so Sophie looked around
the back of him to make sure his tail was still there (she’s so funny).
Abby and Cheryl rode
Indiana Jones while the rest of us enjoyed the Tiki room. Finn was absolutely enamored with the singing
birds, talking totems and drumming monkeys. After the Tiki room,
we happened upon Jasmine and Aladdin in their Oasis and stopped in for a
picture and autograph. Sophie asked
Jasmine and Aladdin what their favorite colors were. Jasmine said turquoise and Aladdin said
Aladdin and Princess Jasmine
After lunch and a live blue grass show at the
Golden Horseshoe (which was very funny and impressive), the sun came out! And we decided to go see about riding the Alice in Wonderland ride
and the teacups (which don’t operate when it rains). On our way, we met two cast members who were
quite taken with Sophie’s enthusiasm and they gave her an “Honorary citizen of Disneyland” button, Easter egg decals and some Dalmatian
temporary tattoos. The cast members hung
around and talked with the kids about Disneyland—did you know that about 90% of
the rocks in Disneyland are fake? Two ducks were swimming near one such rock
and Sophie named them Starla and Hockey. A cast
member thought the latter name to be especially appropriate given the Anaheim
Mighty Ducks and he thought she would like a private engagement with some of
the princesses before her scheduled Princess dinner that night. We were all so thrilled! We continued on our way to the caterpillars
and teacups and as we passed through Sleeping Beauty’s castle we came upon
Merlin in front of the sword in the stone as he was about to start a little
skit. We stopped to watch. Merlin, as the skit goes, is looking for a
new temporary ruler of Disneyland. He uses his magic stick to help him find the
right person to pull the sword from the stone.
First the stick points to a brawny lad, who is unsuccessful in pulling
the sword from the stone and he retreats to the “cobbles of shame” while a
second smaller person is chosen by the stick to try. Well, as luck would have it, Sophie is
chosen. She pulls the sword from the
stone (or in her case, it pulls itself) and the crowd cheers as she’s crowned
temporary ruler of Disneyland by Merlin. That’s when the tears erupt! She was so stunned and scared by the applause! Merlin quickly wrapped up the skit and after
the crowd dissipated, he presented Sophie with a Disneyland Sword in the Stone
medal. I cannot believe our luck!
is encouraging Sophie to pull the sword from the stone. The brawny lad on the “cobbles of shame” is in
the back right.
Merlin, we met Snow White’s Queen
Finally, it’s time for
the private meeting with the princesses.
We make our way back to the Princess Fantasy Faire and since we are a
few minutes early yet, I decide to get a little lunch for Finn. As we are sitting and munching, Aurora floats past. Sophie and Abby spring after her to get her
picture and autograph but she’s in a hurry (we assume for the afternoon
parade). But as she goes, she says to
Sophie, “Goodbye, twin!” The look on
Sophie’s face was heart wrenching. She was so clearly disappointed. But Grandmas always know just what to say and
she somehow abolished the tears that were so close to breaking in Sophie’s big
eyes. Finally, we present our ticket to
a cast member and we were escorted behind a curtain where Snow White and
Sleeping Beauty are waiting to talk with us.
Sophie’s eyes lit up when she saw Aurora. I think we could have cancelled the dinner at
that point. She was tickled!
rendezvous with Princess Snow White and Princess Aurora
Sophie wanted to know their
favorite colors as well. Snow White said
yellow, blue and red. Aurora said pink, blue and purple. As we came out of the curtained room from the
meeting, Cinderella was just starting to tell her story. Finn, being the only little boy present, was
singled out by the Prince to be the stand-in prince at the appropriate time
during the story. He chose not to
apple was better than the girl.
After the Princess
Fantasy Faire, we found ourselves back in front of the Haunted
Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean. At that
point, Cheryl said to me, “Watch for Captain Jack Sparrow. He’s usually around this area.” No sooner had
she gotten the words out than there he was.
Captain Jack Sparrow
After a few more rides
(including one on the rockets or “airplanes”—as Finn called them), it was
finally time to head to Ariel’s Grotto for dinner with the princesses.
and Finn on the rockets…er…airplanes
and Sophie on the rockets
Belle at the dinner
and rubbing noses with Princess Minnie
After dinner, we went for
a quick stroll down to the pier.
California Screamin’ was no wait so Grandma
took the kids on King Triton’s Carousel while Cheryl, Abby and I rode the most
amazing roller coaster I’ve ever been on—twice.
Monday was touchy as
the kids were getting the colds that Grandma and Abby were just coming off of,
but still a stellar day in which we finally got to ride the teacups (Sophie’s 3rd
favorite ride) and the Storybook land boats through Monstro
the Whale’s mouth. We also rode Nemo’s Submarine Voyage, Soarin’
Grizzly River Rapids (Sophie’s 2nd favorite ride—she had to ride it
twice and wanted to ride a 3rd!), Monsters Inc, and Muppets
3-D. I’m sure I’m forgetting at least
one something, but you get the point. We
had a fantastic time and can’t wait to go again next year!