Sunday, November 16, 2008

Disneyland with Karen

I arrived to the park shortly after 11:00 on Friday. Just since my visit on Monday, more and more Christmas decorations were up, including the Christmas tree! Christmas music was playing and everything looked so festive. This is my favorite time of year at Disneyland. I met up with Karen, only to discover she'd already been awarded a Dream Fastpass! Now, whether or not it's fair to say she "won" it, or simply got it because she was a stalker, I don't know, but she had one none the less. I had read somewhere online that if your entire party wasn't together at the time of a Dream Squad prize give out, you could obtain one at City Hall. So that's what we did, we went to City Hall where I got my very own Dream Fastpass! That thing was awesome! We walked on practically all the major rides for the remainder of the day. And even tried to stalk out a Dream Squad member on Saturday morning in hopes of obtaining another one. LOL. No Such luck.We had lunch at a place that is tradition for us, The Hungry Bear Restaurant. While the food really isn't all that great, the atmosphere and relaxing pace of sitting at a table at waterside and watching the canoes and Mark Twain pass by makes the spot a must visit place every visit. We sat for well over an hour talking and just enjoying being at Disneyland.For the next two days, we hit just about every ride at least once, some more than once, and even some more than twice! It was awesome to just get in line and not have to worry about which of my children didn't meet the height requirements, didn't like the ride, or refused to ride the ride. I didn't have to think about where I left my stroller, and getting it after getting off a ride. For two days, it was total grown up fun.Unfortunately, due to evening winds kicking up, the fireworks for the evening were cancelled. We had planned on staking out one of the best viewing spots and watching them, but went about riding more rides and taking in the magic of all the glistening Christmas lights. We stayed in the park almost until it's midnight closing before heading to Karen's hotel. Once to Karen's hotel we each got ready for bed and talked and giggled like our own girls would do if they were at a sleepover. It was great to be able to spend the night away in the hotel with Karen and enjoy her visit. Saturday morning we were up and out the door early. The park opened at 8:00 and we wanted to take advantage getting on some rides before the Saturday crowds arrived. We hit every single ride in Fantasyland, literally walking on just about every one of them. It took all of maybe 30 minutes to hit six of the rides. There simply weren't many people yet in the park, and we were loving it!After attempting to stalk every Dream Squad member that passed our way in hopes of obtaining another Dream Fastpass, we decided to see about riding with the captain of the Mark Twain. Hannah and I did this a few years ago, when Steven was in London and it's something she still mentions from time to time. We were the only ones even waiting to board the Mark Twain so it wasn't difficult in having our request be granted. We had a great time talking to the Cast Member and at the end of our journey, he told me I was welcomed to come back and visit him again. So the next time we're at the park on a Saturday or Sunday, I'll take both the girls up to help 'steer' the Mark Twain with Paul. It was such a beautiful morning. Beautiful blue skies, a warm wind, not a lot of people in the park. And it was nice to walk the pathways and walkways with not a lot of people scurrying about to get to their next ride. Around 11:00, I took Karen over to the Disney Outlet about three miles from Disneyland where she could look for souvenirs and goodies to take home to her three kids. She scored big time on shirts for everyone and after tallying what she would have spent based on the price tags and what she did spend and saved with my discount card, she saved $100!

Heading back to Disneyland to do some more shopping, the beautiful skies we'd had earlier in the day, were now grey and filled with smoke and ash and we learned of nearby fires in Anaheim Hills. The gusty winds were blowing the smoke right in our direction. The skies were so dark, it looked like rain.After receiving a call from my mom, I learned that both freeway routes I could possibly take to get home were closed due to the nearby fires in Anaheim Hills, Brea, and Yorba Linda. I was trapped at Disneyland (ah shucks!). If the freeways didn't open up, or the windy conditions worsened, at least I had a place to stay and could make my way home on Sunday morning if need be.

The rest of Saturday, we spent on rides and people watching. At dusk, we sat just outside the Disneyland Railroad station that overlooks the main entrance of Disneyland and down Main Street. The Christmas lights had just come on and everything looked so pretty, despite the horrible looking skies and devastation that was taking places miles away. At one point in our evening, I spotted some cute Disney mugs that had been abandoned on a bench. There was no one around, nothing else left, just two holiday mugs. I convinced Karen to get them for us so that each of us would have ourselves a new mug. Afterall, if we didn't get them, someone else would, or a Cast Member would come along and they'd simply be put in the trash. After much convincing, Karen succumbed to the peer pressure and we are both now the proud owners of Holiday Disney mugs!! Every time we drink from those mugs, we'll chuckle as to how it came to be that we got them.It was shortly after 9:00 that Steven informed me the freeways had been reopened and I'd be able to make it home. So Karen and I did one more ride together and then we said our goodbyes and I headed down Main Street to the exit to head for home, and she went to Space Mountain to use our Fastpasses.

It was a great two days of Disney fun. I'm so glad I was able to go and spend the time with Karen and spend the night with her and was able to go kid less thanks to my Mom who watched the girls on Friday while Steven worked and the the remainder of the time the girls and Daddy had the house to themselves. It looks like it might be a few years before Karen comes back, so it was fun to have this visit together!


Joy Howse said...

I am not jealous, I am not jealous, I am not jealous!!! Maybe if I say that enough times it will become true. Glad you had an awsome time. All mommies need time away to recharge the batteries. Sounds like you had just that this weekend. Now back to reality. :)

Darcy said...

Thanks Joy!

Yes, back to reality, which came all too soon.... Yesterday morning the girls were fighting before church! LOL.

Liz said...

One of these days I'll have to come back to CA for a Disney trip w/ Darcy! :)

Darcy said...

Oh my gosh, I promise you, that would be so much fun! LOL


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