Every year Grandpa takes all the grandkids (with at least one parent) who want to go to 2 blissful, crazy, fun-filled, cousin happy, exhausting but exhilerating days at DISNEYLAND!!! This year did not disappoint! Even with Cooper- 3 months, and Addi- 8 months, it was a really low-key, low stress, and fun time!
To start at the beginning, this trip has obviously been in the works for a loooooong time, and never once did I ever consider that I and Cooper would go. Too hard, too stressful, too much anxiety for me, with a baby, to drive to Cali, stay in a hotel, be at Disneyland ,be off a schedule etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.
The day before the trip a dear friend gave me a much needed lecture about us now having a family of 4 and making the most of every opportunity to make memories together, and making it work with our new dynamics....it freaked me out, and make me a littly giddy, and I started thinking.... "Why not? Why don't Cooper and I go??" I consulted Dave, who was a little weary, Emily- who had been to Disneyland with a 4 month old and said it was easy, and my dear lecturing friend for a few more pep-talks.
I DECIDED WE WOULD DO IT!
I almost chickened out a few times and thought, "What in the ever-loving-heck am I thinking? I am going to die of the world's longest anxiety attack!" But guess what?? SO SO SO SO WRONG!!!
I packed up Cooper and I, and we did it! The drive down was really well, even considering we forgot hot water for Cooper and somewhere between here and there had to feed him an ice cold bottle make with an icy water bottle from the cooler. Guess what- HE LIVED!
The hotel was not a problem either, he slept really well!
We went a day early so that we could go to Knotts Berry Farm with Ryan and Emily's fam, and it was a really fun easy day! There was NO ONE there, no lines, cool weather, and everyone did EVERYTHING they wanted, and we were still done by 4! We picked up take out on the way back to the hotel, and everyone settled in. I told Dave I was going to lay down for a little around 7pm...and I fell asleep for the night! Guess all the worrying (For nothing) tuckered me out!
The next morning we met the rest of the crew for free breakfast at the hotel - it was delicious! They had everything you could want, including fresh made omlettes to your specifications! I had an egg white omelette every morning with ham and lots of veggies!
All together we were Dad, Brit, Alyssa, Makenna, Jonathon, Ryan, Emily, and their 4 girls, Me, Dave and our two boys, and Tyler and Katie. (Erin and Aurora joined us on Friday!) WE headed over together and we truly had a fantastic time.
Here is Cooper being loved on tram on the way over-
We stayed together for parts and split the kids by ages at parts. First thing on Thursday morning we all headed to California Adventure. I waited with Cooper in the Fast pass line for over an hour to get everyone Fast passes to Cars Land Radiator Springs. It's a new ride and if you don't get fast passes first thing, you either wait in the regular line for 3-4 hours, or you don't ride. The fast passes are usually all gone about an hour after the park opens.
I have to say, it was a wonderful day!!! Cooper slept and woke whenever he wanted.
Here's Coop doing what Coop does best- (we also discovered something about Coop- he loves to nap with a fuzzy blanket over his head! Go Figure...)
Dad pushed or wore Cooper occasionally so I could do some of the rides. Dave and I traded off occasionally too! Even Alyssa and Aunt Erin took a turn wearing him, but I Forgot to get pictures. Coop didn't quite know what to think about the baby wearing, but it got him out of the carseat occasionally so I think it was a good thing!
Everyone just went with the flow, ate wherever, did whatever, and had a low key good time!
One cute/tender thing that happened (you have to know my Dad's back story to know how meaningful it is..) was that right when we got there, Grandpa said to the grandkids- "Here's the number one rule- NO ONE IS ALLOWED TO BE HUNGRY AT DISNEYLAND!" He bought more churros, cotton candy, sodas, pretzels, lunches and dinners and in-between-snacks than a person could count, and it was probably his favorite part of the trip.
Mine (and Jaxon's) favorite part of the trip was when the "Phineas and Ferb Party Truck" stopped and set up right in front of us! Jaxon and all the little cousins got to dance with Phineas and Ferb (Jaxon's ALL TIME FAVORITE SHOW) and the Fireside Girls! They all had a blast, and I got some of the cutest video of Jaxon trying to follow the dances of the Fireside GIrls!!! (On dave's phone, will be posted soon!)
Thursday night we headed home around 6:30 with Me, dave, Tyler, Jaxon, grandpa, Katie, Jaxon, Alexis and Cooper. Every kid was sound asleep by the time the tram came to pick us up at Disneyland- I'd say that means it was a good, full, FUN day!
Friday Erin and Aurora joined us- and more fun was had! Everyone had another great day! We split the kids up by age a little more and everyone got to go to the places they liked.
Jaxon and Jonathon are special buddies! They loved riding the new Cars ride together!
Jonathon said he really liked Splash Mountain...but....not enough to ride it again!
By about 5 all the babies and little kids were done,but Jaxon on up wanted to have some more fun so Dave, Emily, Erin, Jaxon, Hailey, Peyton, Alyssa, MaKenna, and Aurora all stayed for several more hours! Dave said it was the most fun part of the whole trip!
Friday also happened to be Dave's birthday! Before we left he got a new shirt, and 20 new pairs of CHristmas socks... no... this is not a joke, I really did get them for him. NO....THEY were not a joke...he really wanted them! Dave wears Christmas socks exclusively between Thanksgiving and Christmas! He loves it, so I indulge him! After we got back he got one more shirt and the extended Lord of The Rings on Blu Ray.
Saturday we packed up and hit the road. We went to the beach with Ryan and Emily's fam. Why we chose the cold, sandy, wet, sandy, windy, sandy beach.... I'll never know! (I kind of hate the beach!) Anyway, just as I told dave would happen- just putting toes in, expanded to all out head to toe swimming in the ocean with his cousins, and after the novelty wore off in about 10 minutes, we had several deliriously, hysterical-out-of-their-minds frozen little popsicle children. I got Jaxon showered off in the outdoor showers and then we put on his warm fuzzy pjs and a big sweatshirt. His lips stayed blue for another half hour! After he stopped shaking, and his lips turned back to their regular color, he said that it was fun after all!
After the beach we drove as far as Palm Desert and stayed at a hotel. There is a chance....a GOOD chance...that the reason that Dave chose to do this was that so we could eat at Pat and Oscar's, now called O's American Kitchen. It is our favorite restuarant, and they are getting fewer and far-er between in California, so we take advantage when we can! We got pretty bad service and it kind of tainted the experience for us...but the food was still TOP NOTCH!!!
We duct-taped some black material up and made a little dark bedroom for Cooper in the hallway of the hotel room since we didn't have two rooms like at Disneyland. (Yup, I'm the mother that travels with black material and duct tape...just in case!)
Here's Coop after his hotel room bath! Just hanging out! (note the new short haircut!~)
The rest of the drive home on Sunday was easy. 4 hours is not too shabby. Everyone did well, and when we got back into town we went straight to our new house to see the countertops and faucet that had been installed! We are getting so excited to see all the progress being made!
All in all this is one of, if not the number one anticipated activity of the year. Jaxon (and Dave) absolutely adore Disneyland, and I love it because they love it. Everyone was so fun and easy to be with, and once again, it was a trip that we will never forget!