Thursday, December 11, 2008

Goin' Back To Cali: Disneyland

(Picture a smaller version of my family with Mickey Mouse here)

We had to do it. It had been 5 years since the last time we took our kids to Disneyland, so we put out the big bucks and went again.

But this time we were prepared.

Last time: We took all 6 of our kids, ranging in age from 8 months to 9 years old. Disneyland was not the happiest place on earth. We had to push a stroller around all day which was nice for the cargo space but awful for navigating around and through crowds. Half the kids could not go on rides with a height requirement so we had to take turns sitting outside those rides with the vertically-challenged people while the others had a blast - and then switch off so the adult who missed out would get a chance to get in on the excitement of something besides the "Dumbo the Flying Elephant" ride. We had fun, but by the end of the day we were exhausted and vowed not to return until Coolister was at least 18 years old.

This time: We sent Coolister and ElemenoB to Disneyland with the cross-country team on Saturday after the big race. They had fun enjoying the park with friends (more importantly, without mom and dad). Then on Wednesday we left the 3 smallest family members at grandma's with Coolister and ElemenoB while we took the remaining 4 (ranging in age from 5-12 years old) to enjoy the Magical Land of Disney. It was perfect. Everyone was tall enough to ride everything except Indiana Jones, and only Princess missed out on that one. No strollers, no crying babies, no diapers to change. Just a lot of running around and having a good time.

I would now like to present some awards to the theme park in regards to this last visit.

Fastest Ride goes to Space Mountain with an extra shout-out to whoever thought up the fast-pass... I love you.

Coolest Land is awarded to Toon Town. The rides aren't worth waiting in line for, but the motif? Awesome. I could spend a whole day just wandering around there.

Scariest Ride for sure goes to the rockets out front of Star Tours. I feel like I'm going to fall out of those things every time! Can't they just tear those babies out? My fear of heights may have something to do with it...

Biggest Mistake goes to the person who took out Bear Country Jamboree and replaced it with a Winnie the Pooh ride! Seriously, Winnie the Pooh?! I mean, Bear Country Jamboree was a classic! Speaking of which...

Best Remaining Classic Ride/Feature goes to the Jungle Cruise. I love the remarks the guides make and the fact that they come up with new ones every time. I just hope they don't turn it into a canoe ride called "Pocahontas' Colors of the Wind" or something. I mean, look at what happened to Swiss Family Robinson - it's now Tarzan's Treehouse.

Most Improved = Nemo's Underwater Adventure. I always thought the submarines were fun, but they were a bit random. The Nemo theme helped tie everything together.

Least Worth the Wait goes to Autopia. I think the excitement of this ride comes from the idea that those who are not old enough to drive get to try it. But combine getting stuck behind someone who stalls every 20 seconds with the hard gas pedals and it's really not worth the wait for an adult. (p.s. Thumbelina didn't like it, either.)

OK, I could go on all day, but I've already been on the computer for much too long.

Final words: We had a great time.

p.s. What do you think? Any awards you'd give to a Disneyland ride?


~j. said...

Best shop on Main Street: That silhouette shop. Awesome.

pam said...

A brilliant plan! I wonder if we could leave James with Grandma and go by ourselves...?!?

Just kidding. Really. (ahem)

cari said...

I'm so glad you got to go. How fun for everyone!

Jeanna Bohanon said...

Best part about our recent trip to D'land? Watching the pure joy on my little "padowan's" face after he defeated Darth Vader (he's already a huge Star Wars junkie) and dancing with my "Baby Prince" to our song, Once Upon a Dream in Sleeping Beauty's castle....


Cami said...

Rob really liked the Buzz Lightyear ride, where you get to shoot Lazers at Zurg.

I loved Pirates of the Carribean.

Kate loved Thunder Mountain.

My favorite moment by far: as we're stepping out of Star Tours Kate asks, "Dad, where are we now?"

Mom not Mum said...

Glad you had a great time. We like the rockets - mostly because they are wonderfully placed outside of star tours so those that want to go on star tours can and those who aren't tall enough can go on the rockets.

I was also a HUGE country bear jamboree fan - in fact I liked America Sings as well and that whole building is a waste as it is now.

Glad you had a good time!

Julia said...

I rode those rockets once. Never again. I was sure I was going to fly right out of them.

Did you not go over to California Adventure? The new Toy Story ride is brilliant.

Teachinfourth said...

"Soaring over California" at California Adventure was one of my absolute favorites.

I also love Indiana Jones at Disneyland for being just plain amazing.

Rebecca said...

We also loved the Buzz Lightyear ride...maybe we were driven by my competetive nature, but we rode it again and again, and loved it every time. (And I never could beat my kids' scores!)

And I agree with you on the speedway. Take it out! What a waste of precious time and space!