Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Day One: California Adventure

We all woke up with some serious Disney excitement.  After getting through the main gates we had to wait about ten minutes at the fountain for the park to really open.  Noah, who is usually a reasonably patient three year old, could hardly handle those ten minutes.  He just wanted to get started, even though he had no idea what to expect.

Once the crowd started moving we headed straight to Cars Land.

Grandma and Luke headed to the Radiator Springs Racers fast pass line and Nate and I took Noah to just try and get on the ride before the line got horribly long.  It turned out to be a great strategy.


That sweet kid was SO excited to be in Radiator Springs.  I should have counted how many times he started a sentence with, "Look Mom!"  He pointed out EVERYthing like it was his hometown and he was the tour guide.
 Radiator Springs Racers was the first roller coaster type ride he's ever been on.  He practically jumped out of his seat when we went in to the dark tunnel and Mack was right in front of him.  But he loved the ride.

In fact, he is still retelling that ride daily to just about anyone who will listen.

Cars Land was fun for all of us.
Luke kept a pretty serious face through all of the rides, and then proceeded to have enormous fits when they were over.  Translation: he LOVED it, didn't know quite what to make of it all, and was just ticked off when the fun ended.
 If we could have just gone back and forth all day between Radiator Springs Racers and Sarge's store Noah probably would have been happy.  That store has a LOT of fun stuff, including 'Darth Mater' (think Star Wars), which Noah came home with.

But we did move on.  Bugs Land got mixed reviews.  Noah didn't make it through the show.  That sensitive little soul got scared to death.  Lesson learned: my three year old is not ready for 3D. He also nearly threw up on the lady bugs.  :-)
But it's a fun place for little ones, and Luke screamed at the end of every ride.  I tried hard to convince him that there was more fun to be had on other rides, but he wouldn't have it sometimes.

While Nate and I tried out Tower of Terror (fun, but it's better at Disney World) Grandma and the boys found smoothies.

Noah was funny on the rides.  Even on the most tame, seemingly uneventful rides (like Monsters, Inc.) he'd say, "Can we get off this thing?" or "I'm ready to get out of here."  But at the end of every ride he talked about how much fun it was.  I think it was just getting used to so many of the rides being in the dark, because by the second day he wasn't saying those things.

Soarin' Over California is one of my favorite rides, so I was excited to share it with Nate and Noah.  I think we ended up squeezing in four rides on it by the end of our trip.

I didn't realize that the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail had an "Up" theme to it.  Had I known, I probably would have dug out Noah's Halloween costume from a few years ago.  How cute would he have looked in this picture...
wearing this?  It would have been so perfect!

Both boys really loved it there.
Noah and Nate did the ropes courses a few times.

Luke couldn't get enough of this slide.
 I think the only thing that kept us moving along was that is was really hot at that point in the day.

Paradise Pier was practically empty on one side.  There were no lines for The Little Mermaid, Golden Zephyr, or Jumping Jellyfish.

Maybe that's because everyone was waiting to go on Toy Story, which is totally worth the wait.  We loved it!

We should have bought this hat and just kept it for dress ups.  Both boys laughed like crazy when they were wearing it.

And when at Disney, one MUST partake of some Disney snacks, right?

Luke found his happy place at the carousel.

I don't know if it's riding on an animal or the up and down or the round and round, but that kid could not get enough carousel time.  Grandma hooked the boys up with a few extra rides while Nate and I rode California Screamin'. 

 We decided to come full circle for the day and have dinner at Flo's in Cars Land, mostly because we knew Noah would love to say that he ate there.  ("I ate at the real Flo's in Radiator Springs!")  On our way over there we got stopped at the most perfect time for the parade.
For this trip, I liked that we didn't worry much about show times and parades.  We just let the day happen and unfold.  But I'm so glad that this parade literally unfolded right in front of us.
 It was the perfect one to see for our guys who love so much of the Pixar world.

Flo's was good.  Cars Land at night was even better.

I just couldn't get enough of those neon lights.


Noah got in two more rides on Radiator Springs Racers, which finished off the day with 4 times.

I was glad the park closed at 8.  We were all worn out from a humid, immensely fun day.  But there was no debate about how late to stay out or how long we should try to push our kids to get in more rides.  It was time to head back to the hotel at a perfect time so we could be ready for another fun day.

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