I know that Brigham Young said, “This is the place” when he first saw the Salt Lake Valley.
Well, for the Greding family– THIS is the place.
My favorite place in the world to be with my family.
It’s where my children talk to each other for hours without fighting.
Where we take tons of pictures and no one complains.
It’s where the big kids take the little kids by their hand from ride to ride.
It’s where we stand in line to meet princesses and no one rolls their eyes or complains about the wait.
It’s where Dan and I make eye contact, with that “aren’t we so lucky” look.
Here is a glimpse into our magical trip– our last one as a complete family for 2 years, so it was especially bittersweet.
On Sunday afternoon we checked into the Disneyland Hotel. It’s very pricey (especially during the summer and at Christmas), but it’s a splurge we always make at least once a year. Being so close to the park is amazing, the rooms are spacious and so beautiful, the pool is unbelievably fun and that Disney magic just stays with you even when you’re not in the park, unlike when we stay at other hotels close by. You know what I mean by that Disney magic, right???
When we get to our room, I always make sure we take this pic! It’s amazing how crowded this bed has gotten over the years!
After we unpacked, we got ready for a fun time at California Adventure.
This little lady LOVES getting dolled up in her Disney clothes!
The hat is from Disneyland, the necklace was from Very Jane and the clothes are from Zulily.
It always makes me so happy to get a group pic of all the kids!
I think everyone’s favorite ride is the Toy Story Midway- WJ loves the glasses!
After we left Paradise Pier, the big kids headed to Tower of Terror and Dan took Keiran to his Mecca– Cars Land.
Tower of Terror is simply the craziest, most fun ride ever. I literally laugh and scream the entire time!!!
When we go on a 3 day trip and stay at the Disneyland Hotel, we always leave the middle day as a pool and Downtown Disney day. Why pay for this awesome hotel and not use it???
Check out the slide part of this pool! Isn’t is seriously awesome!?!?!?
Wednesday frolicked in the water the entire day. She was the cutest bathing beauty!
These guys had so much fun swimming, going on the slides and inventing games and races.
This was a Red Letter moment for KK- he had been scared to go on one of the slides the whole day and finally he went on it (or Dan possibly threw him down it) and this was his face when he got to the bottom! He LOVED it! And proceeded to go on it 100 times. sigh
After the pool, we got ready and hit up Downtown Disney. Wednesday Jones was very excited to get to use her purse. This outfit is from a french company, Servane Barrau. The bow was made by me and the purse is from Disneyland.
The Lego store is one of our favorite stops at Downtown Disney.
How gorgeous is this Beauty and the Beast???
This is how our littles roll. I’m always so jealous at the end of the night of them wrapped up in their strollers. I want a stroller.
At the end of the night, my mom and I took the littles back to the hotel to watch fireworks from our room and Dan and the big boys went to watch the Dodger game at the ESPN Zone. It was the perfect ending to a perfect day! Remember when making your reservations to ask for a room facing the fireworks!
The next morning we were at the Disneyland entrance at 7am.
That’s right– I got all 5 of my kids dressed and to the gates by 7. It’s a Disney miracle and quite frankly, the ONLY way to do Disneyland. We always are the first ones into the park and we literally do every ride by 7pm. I’m not kidding- every ride!
We ALWAYS head to Fantasyland first. If you are the first ones into the park, you can do all of Fantasyland in a little over an hour!
This is another Servane Barrau outfit. It’s my favorite!
This was the most amazing moment of the trip.
You see, Wednesday LOVES Alice.
Watches Alice in Wonderland at least once every day.
So when she actually got to meet her and the Mad Hatter– well, it was incredible.
Alice took her by the hand and walked her over to the wall and her and the Mad Hatter talked to her for the longest time.
They made her feel sooooo special and I was in heaven watching the whole scene.
Scarlet is growing up so fast and although she is now a tween, she still LOVES dressing up for Disneyland!
Keiran is OBSESSED with Indian Jones.
He loves him. Loves his movies. OBSESSED.
I love that he was rarely without his Indy hat the whole time.
The Princess Faire was Wednesday Jones’ favorite spot by far! She loved meeting every single princess and told them all how beautiful they were! It was literally the sweetest!
Autopia has the longest line, but we always make sure we grab a Fast Pass and do it because my kids LOVE it.
Keiran decided to scare the daylights out of us and took off and rode the carousel on his own while we were frantically looking for him!
He was finally found when he tried to get on the Dumbo ride without a parent!!! Not a great Disney moment!!!
And to close out the post, a picture of Dan and the boys. This picture, for me, shows what Disneyland is all about for us.
Just the way Chandler has his hand on Dan’s shoulder while they are walking and talking… a slice of heaven.
So for the next couple of years Disneyland will be great…
we will have a fun time…
but until it’s all 7 of us back together again, it just won’t be the same.
I will miss my dear boy here so much.
So, if a dream is a wish your heart makes when you’re fast asleep, then I will be dreaming of the day when we are all back here together as a family in front of that castle.