Saturday, December 29, 2018

Disney Trip 2018 Recap

It's been over a month since our Disney trip and I've just been WAITING for the chance to sit down and write a post about it and share all of our photos from our vacay. Now that the craziness of Christmas prep is over, I was so happy to walk through memory lane and come up with a snapshot of our trip!

Disney is the best. It's so magical, happy, and nostalgic, you can't help but feel like a little kid again. The attention to detail is perfect and you'll probably hear yourself start to hum along to all the classic Disney songs that play. I will forever and always wish to be a SoCal local just so that I am in close proximity to the happiest place on earth. Actually, on our trip, I met a mom who was taking her 7 year old daughter to Disneyland for the first time ever, despite living only a half an hour away. Needless to say my jaw dropped and she laughed nervously as I shook my head in disbelief!

Going with three kiddos aged 4, 3 and then a baby under 1 required a little extra work but thankfully, Donald and I found our groove early into the trip which made everything go by super smoothly!
 We decided at the very beginning of the trip that we would make sure to take our time, try not to over plan and to follow the kids' lead as much as possible. Also, we agreed that Donald would buy me all the Matterhorn macaroons my heart desired.

Our trip had so many high points, so many fun, small memories and so many big and exciting ones. The girls were all about the magic and their imaginations were in hyper drive so we just marveled at them most of the time! From Eloise's excitement over the carousel to Sophie's 5 minute long hug from Rey, it was all so wonderful. We tried feeding Theo his first ice cream ( which he did not like at all), Sophie danced in the Viva Navidad street party and there was even a magical moment in there for Donald and I, despite being grown ups and without pixie dust.

Highlight 1.

We did a lot of family bonding over our week in California. We would race to the entrance every morning, talk about our favorite part of the day at Dinner, play eye-spy and guessing games while waiting in line. We'd sing Christmas songs together and share treats. Having Donald to ourselves 24/7 was in itself such a fun thing since it doesn't happen often...not since Theo was born!

Highlight 2.
Eloise is our observer. She also has a major poker face so sometimes she isn't the easiest to read. I would ask what was her favorite part of the day so far and she would usually say the food we had just eaten. One morning, while Donald and Sophie were on a big kid ride, Eloise and I went to meet Elena, Eloise's FAVORITE princess. She was a little speechless and was totally stunned the entire meet and greet. When Elena suggested that they take a photo, Eloise turned to me with this huge smile and I nearly cried. Probably the biggest smile of the trip!

Highlight 3.
Sophie was a ride machine! The girl went on most of the big kid rides, including Splash Mountain (which was her favorite), Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Grizzly River Run. She wanted to go on the Incredicoaster so badly but she was still a little too short. Next time! She was so adventurous and had a blast. And we loved experiencing all the adventures right along with her!

Highlight 4.
Donald's brother met up with us for a few days which was so fun. The girls loved seeing him and taking him on their favorite rides. And because we had the extra help with the kids, Donald and I had the chance to go on a ride together, sans kids! Shut the front door! We went on Big Thunder Mountain Railway just when the fireworks had started so as we actually had the best spot in the house to enjoy the fireworks! It was so magical and was probably one memory I'll never forget. 

Our family's top 5 Favorite rides
1. Pirates of the Caribbean (we went like 15 times!)
2. Dumbo
3.Jungle Cruise
4. Grizzly River Run
 ( well, just Donald, Sophie and I. We went back to back 5 times until we were drenched. Loved it!)
5.Toy Story Mania

Where we stayed...
We stayed at the Howard Johnson again, which I absolutely love! It's priced so reasonably, there's a pool, splash park and it's only a 8 minute walk to Disneyland (depending on security lines!). My dream is to someday stay at one of the Disney hotels but I think Hojo is a perfectly good place to stay until that happens! 

What we ate...
Christmas is such a good time to visit Disneyland because there are treats upon treats upon treats! They even had a pumpkin spice churro which was life changing. Not to mention an incredible plate of Nachos at Rancho del Zocalo and my ultimate favorite dessert; a cozy cone shaped Santa hat with a cookies and cream filling. Ugh, so good! Also, not Disney related at all but I had my first in-and-out burger while I was in Cali and it completely lived up to the hype! 

If I had to offer one piece of advice...
Get to the park early! Less lines, more photo ops and much more relaxed. Do it, you won't regret it!

My DLR Essentials

I knew we'd be walking a kajillion steps a day so I wanted the comfiest shoes I could get me hands on. These were amazing and didn't look half bad with a dress which to me was a big deal! Also, this bag from Fawn Design was perfect to carry the essentials with me at all times. It fit my camera, phone, snacks, wallet and muslin blanket while leaving my hands free. Definitely my top two essentials.

All right, now for all the photos!!

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