Sunday, March 27, 2016

Spring Break 2016

           Our trip to Anaheim was wonderful!!  The trip there and back was uneventful, so that was a huge blessing.  We left on Sunday, March 6 at about 10:30am, and we got to the Homewood Suites around 5pm.  We didn’t go to bed early because we just planned to go to Downtown Disney since it was supposed to rain. 
           When we got up on Monday, we realized the rain wasn’t that bad so we changed our plan and went to Knott’s Berry Farm.  It opened at 10am, but we didn’t get there until 11am because of our indecision.  It was fine, though, because there were no lines and the kids went on so many rides.  Jonathan was excited that we did a carnival game with racing ships to win him a Pokemon Pikachu.  We got one for Daniel, too.  Each game was guaranteed a winner, and since our family were the only ones there and they only needed a minimum of four people.  The kids had so much fun on the rides.  We didn’t hit our first line until 1:45pm.  By the end of the day it was pretty cold, but we had the Camp Snoopy area to ourselves so we stayed until everyone was ready to go.  That was around 7:30pm.  We stopped at their Chicken To Go restaurant (the sit-down dinner place was closed) and went back to the hotel to eat.  That night, we watched My Dog Skip together.

       Tuesday was a rest day.  We slept in and went to the hotel breakfast.  Then we headed over to Downtown Disney.  We barely made it to the 11:20am showing of Zootopia.  We went to the Lego store and did some shopping at the World of Disney Store, too.  As usual at Disney, the lunch prices for most places were very high, so we had lunch at Wetzel’s Pretzels.  After a little more looking around, we went back to the hotel.  I took the kids down to the pool and hot tub.  Michael joined us, so I went back to the room for a bit.  That night we ate the free dinner they had.  It was pasta.  It wasn’t very good, but we made do.

      On Wednesday we got up nice and early to go to Disneyland!  We still hadn’t decided on whether or not to take the shuttle or drive and park.  After breakfast, we saw that the line for the shuttle wasn’t bad so we caught the 8:15am one.  We were at Disneyland by 8:30am.  We got through the bag check and ticket stalls and waited near Main Street for them to open the gates.  First, we headed toward Hyperspace Mountain.  I sent Nathaniel to get Fastpass tickets for the Matterhorn, and he came back annoyed to tell me that they don’t have Fastpasses for the Matterhorn.  Oops!  Hyperspace Mountain was different but fun.  After that we went to the Matterhorn.  We all really enjoyed it.  It had been closed last year.  Big Thunder Mountain was next; as soon as we got there, they opened up a new side and we got on first!  Then Pirates, Splash Mountain, Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain again with a Fast Pass, and Indiana Jones with a Fast Pass.  While everyone else was on Splash Mountain, I went to get the Fast Pass for Indiana Jones but I was missing Nathaniel’s ticket.  They gave me a Fast Pass, but we had to go to City Hall, near the entrance, to get Nathaniel a new ticket.  Oops again!  By then it was after noon and we got lunch at the Galactic Grill.  Then it was Buzz Lightyear, Star Wars Launch Bay where we met Boba Fett and Kylo Ren, then Star Tours.  Nathaniel went off on his own after that.  He acted like he wanted to be on his own all day, but he soon realized that we’re not as slow as we used to be and stayed with us until then.  The rest of us had a snack, rode Buzz again, went to It’s a Small World, Gadget’s Go Coaster, played in Toon Town, and then met up with Nathaniel again.  We all went on the canal boats together.  By then it was about 5:30, so we went to the Tiki Room and then to dinner at the Carnation CafĂ©.  They weren’t ready for us and we had to wait quite a while.  Dinner was wonderful but expensive.  Jonny went to the bathroom after dinner, and came back crying.  He said, “I want to go back to the Homewood Suites!”  He also said, “I wanted to leave since we met Kylo Ren!”  (When we had been there, Kylo Ren was in character, and when we left Jonny was mad and said, “He was rude!”)  So, after dinner Jonny and I raced to the shuttle stop.  We missed our shuttle by seconds, but luckily another driver took us back to the hotel.  After we left, Nathaniel watched the fireworks and went on Hyperspace Mountain again, and the rest of them went on the Matterhorn and Splash Mountain.  Daniel got drenched on Splash Mountain this time.  It was such a fantastic day!  No whiners, except for Jonny!  I was actually glad to be back at the hotel so I could prepare for our day at Legoland the next day.

      On Thursday, Michael had to go to work.  We left for Lego Land at 9am and arrived at 10:30am.  Thankfully, my printed coupons worked, but we had to buy the park hopper tickets for Sea Life Aquarium as well.  The lines were much longer and we weren’t familiar with the park, but it was still a great day and the kids had a great time.  We had a snack-y lunch and tried the yummy apple fries.  We ate at the pizza buffet for an early dinner and that was really good.  My favorite quote of the day was Jonny, after going down the slides: “That was enjoyable.”  We left at 6pm and got back to the hotel by 7:20pm.  Michael had eaten at Outback by himself, and when we got back he took the kids to the pool and I had a nice break!

           On Friday, we had breakfast and then took Michael to the Convention Center.  That took 45 minutes and it was only about a mile away.  Traffic was insane!  After that we went to Target for food, supplies, and lunch, and then went back to the hotel to do laundry and play in the pool.  I left around 4pm to meet Michael at the Expo and go to the Hall of Legends awards.  The speeches went so long that it ended at 8:30 instead of 7:30.  We went to a wonderful buffet at the Marriott afterwards.
            Saturday was Surf City day!  We left at 9am and arrived at Huntington Beach at 9:45am.  The kids had a wonderful time at their surf lesson!  It was great to see Uncle Jim.  We had their photographer take pictures, and they turned out wonderful!  Jonny was bored and cold.  I had bought him a bucket and pail at Target, but he only played with that for a few minutes and got bored of it.  Nathaniel, Daniel, and Andrew all stood up on their boards.  Emily could have, but she was too scared.  We had lunch at TK’s Burgers, and then we drove to the Maritime Museum.  The kids had fun playing with all of the toys.  We enjoyed seeing the huge harbor on the drive back to the hotel.  We got back around 5pm.  We washed the towels and waited for Michael.  We went to IHOP for dinner, which was outrageously expensive.  I wanted to go there because I knew it was Kids Eat Free, but the meals were so expensive that it cost over $60 anyway.  That night was daylight savings, so poor Michael lost an hour of sleep and had to get up early for a meeting.

       On Sunday, we left around 11am to go to Uncle Jim’s.  We hung out, played with Uncle Jim’s drone, ate burgers, and played games.  The kids especially liked the peg game that they had.  We left around 4:45 and got back to the hotel by 5:30.  Michael was already there.  We had some of the food we had bought at Target for dinner and did our best to finish the leftovers. 

      On Monday, we ate, packed, and left by 10:30am.  It was a nice drive home.  We didn’t hit much traffic and we made pretty good time.  I am so grateful that we got to go on this trip!!!  I feel so blessed that we are able to do so much traveling.  The kids are great travelers and they had a wonderful time!