After eight days away (five of those spent in Disney) we’re home. Sorry I wasn’t able to post updates as I went, but anyone who has done Disney knows how exhausting it can be! Add in the fact that we were doing it with two kids under the age of three and I just had no energy by the end of our days. But I’ve got tons to show and tell you and I also plan to do a few new Disney tip posts. Today I’m gonna give you just a quick overview of the trip before I go into more specifics.
Travel days getting to and from California sucked, but that’s nothing new. We drove across the border into the states for our flight since it saved us over $100 per person (which on three flights is significant!) But Noah decided he hated seat belts on planes (he has always been either a lap child or in a car seat so this was new for him) so we had a few meltdown screaming battles, primarily during take off and descent when the seat belt was mandatory. Thankfully everyone around us were grandparents or very understanding. I was super grateful that we had the right kind of people nearby! I had to do the typical aisle walking with Asher to keep him entertained, but other then that he was fine and munched on cheerios. Oh, and my kids are obviously adrenaline junkies. Both thought the initial take off and bump bump of landing was hysterical (like actual laughter from Asher and squeels from Noah.)
Our trip happened to take place during a crazy Santa Ana heat wave. We had temperatures between 35-38 degrees for nearly half our trip, which was by far the hottest weather we’ve ever had there. Personally, we’d have preferred much cooler weather and are already planning our next vacation there for during the winter months. We purchased a fan/spray bottle to carry around and had to take plenty of shade/water breaks.
We stayed at a VRBO rental called Walts Place, which was about a 12-15 minute walk from the park through downtown Disney. This was super beneficial since we didn’t have to rely on any kind of transportation other then our feet. A few times we caught the monorail, which was an eight minute walk from our place and took us directly into the park. We felt like this was a great distance and would happily do it again! I should add that we brought out double stroller along so that Noah could rest whenever needed. He used it a ton, especially for afternoon naps. Our place had a kitchen, so we had groceries delivered to our place and allowed us to save some money by eating breakfast and one other meal at the unit. Eating at the parks is pricey and not often worth the money!
We were at the park for 5 days and skipped out on the Park Hopper feature. Because our kids are so young and because we had a mix of week day and weekend days, we felt we could dedicated entire days to a specific park. We ended up doing three at Disneyland and two at California Adventure. We did a few things twice at California Adventure (Disney JR Live & Carsland) but by day five we were pretty much Disney’d out anyways.
Our top priority was character meet ups with the boys. We pre-purchased PhotoPass+ and had over 200 pictures on it by the time we got home. I’ll elaborate on it more later, but it’s basically a system that allows you to collect photos from Disneyland photographers stationed all over the parks. We love it because it gives us a chance to put our own cameras away and get shots as a family during special moments. Totally worth it in my books!
We picked up a few souvenirs, but tried to concentrate on buying things we couldn’t get back home. Matt and I both got a shirt, we got the boys some Cars themed stuff for the rooms, Noah got random toys, Asher got a special Mickey Mouse stuffy we’d never seen elsewhere and I got a Precious Moments Tinkerbell music box and a coffee mug. I also kept our buttons that were given to us by Cast Members, one for our 5th Anniversary and one for Ashers first trip to Disney!
So there you have it, an overview of our trip. I’ll elaborate on a lot of this stuff in individual posts (like doing Disney in the heat, where we ate, what it was like with TWO kids under three, Carsland, etc.) Speaking of which, if there are any specific things you have questions about please feel free to send them my way. I’d be happy to either answer the question directly or make a post on it 🙂