Monday, April 13, 2009

Disneyland Day 3

Once again, our hopes for an earlier morning were dashed by our late night on Tuesday! It was about 9 am again by the time we got away from the hotel. But we knew we had a busy day planned so we were happy to let the kids sleep in a bit!

We started Wednesday out back at Disneyland park. By this point we had realized we weren't going to see everything we wanted to see, so we relaxed a bit and enjoyed our last day without rushing any more than necessary. We did want to fit in a few of the classics, so we started with Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, which we thought Amanda would love (and thankfully, the line-up was non-existent first thing in the morning!). However she wasn't so impressed! For some reason she wasn't feeling quite as daring this day and was a bit frightened by the fast rollercoaster. She was OK with it, but partway through she asked me if it was almost over. So needless to say, she decided not to ride for a second time with Jeff when we switched out the parent riders!

Next up was Peter Pan's Flight, which I'd never seen. I was quite impressed, actually, especially considering the ride has been around since the park opened in 1955. I thought the effects were pretty effective; my favourite part was the twinkling stars over the city.

Next we rode Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, another 1955 original. Even though it's kind of hokey, I always feel like I need to do this one. In name, at least, it has a special place in our Dad is a super-fast walker and when he's in a rush, my Mom and I always have to jog to keep up with him. Whenever he leaves somewhere busy (like after Symphony of Fire fireworks in the summer), she says it's like Mr. Toad's Wild Ride to follow him to the car! I guess that makes poor Dad Mr. Toad...but not really. We mean it very affectionately! Anyway, we all enjoyed this one although I think the craziness of it might have been a bit much for Mr. Sam.
Sitting on Mr. Toad's Car

Our next stop was Toon Town. Jeff and I saw this area when we last visited together (in 1997!!), just after it opened. It was fun to visit with Amanda since there are tons of fun little things to explore. It was really hot though, so we were all getting a little tired after awhile. We also went for a ride on Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin; well, Amanda and I did – Sam was sleeping in the carrier and so we didn't want to wake him up!
In jail!
Behind Bars!
Meeting Goofy:
Goofy Pose!
Cooling off by the fountain:
Posing By the Fountain

After Toon Town we were all feeling a bit grouchy and in need of nourishment and cold, we still had a few more things we wanted to see at California Adventure. So we headed over there and popped in for a quick show at MuppetVision 3D. Jeff and I are both big Muppets fans so we were looking forward to it...Amanda was a bit more reluctant but she really enjoyed the show. She hasn't seen too many 3D things (I remember going to a Christmas movie at IMAX once, but that's about it) so she was really intrigued by things flying out of the screen at her! There were a lot of inside jokes for people who know about the Muppets, but it was fun for everyone. And air-conditioned!!

By this point we were really hungry, so we had lunch at Pizza Oom Mow Mow (interesting name?!?), which had quite a few choices other than pizza and a nice cool inside to sit in! That got us all feeling better, and so we headed over to Toy Story Mania, one of the newest rides at the park. I think overall this was Jeff's and my favourite ride! You sit in a car that travels through the ride, and you have a toy gun that you use to shoot targets on the screens as you go by. There were lots of fun effects too – like on the screen that had water balloons as targets, you got sprayed by little jets of water whenever you popped a balloon. Once again, Jeff beat Amanda and me by a long shot, but fun was had by all!
Amanda in her 3D glasses:
Cool Girl!

After this we were starting to run out of steam, especially because it was sooo hot! Jeff really wanted to fit in a ride on the California Screamin' coaster, so we grabbed some Mickey ice cream sandwiches and relaxed while we waited for him to finish his ride.
Pre Ice Cream

Finally, we bid farewell to California Adventure and headed back to Disneyland for a few last hours. Sam needed a food break, so I fed him while Jeff and Amanda visited the Astro Orbitor (which Amanda desperately wanted to ride for some reason!) and then Star Tours. I was a bit disappointed as I would have liked to ride Star Tours as well!

It was starting to get late and we knew we needed to find a good spot in order to see the fireworks at 9:25 pm, so we decided to try for one last ride first. Walking past the Haunted Mansion we saw that there was no line-up, so Amanda and I headed in. I wasn't sure whether she would be OK with it, and I could tell a few parts were getting kind of scary for her. So I had to talk throughout the ride about how silly everything was so she wouldn't get too freaked out (or keep us up all night with nightmares!). She enjoyed it though, and ever since we returned from our trip, she uses the "this room has no windows and no doors" line at random intervals and in completely non-applicable situations (the other day she told me "this pasta has no windows and no doors", then burst into giggles).

We had decided to save the fireworks show for the last evening we were there – somehow it seemed like an appropriate way to round out a magical Disney vacation! But we also knew we needed to find spots early for the fireworks. This was OK as it turned out we were all pretty tired and happy to sit for awhile and rest. Amanda and Sam both napped, and Jeff went and brought us back food to eat while we waited. Overall we waited about 2 hours before the fireworks, but it was worth it. It was also fun soaking up the ambience, with people walking by and families enjoying being together.
Fireworks are Coming!

Our spot for the fireworks was excellent – right by the Disney/Mickey statue in the middle. We were absolutely blown away by the show...Disneyland definitely never fails to amaze when it comes to fireworks! There were fiery cannons, laser beams shooting all around us, and even Tinkerbell flying through the sky to light off fireworks (Amanda saw the cables she was on, but told us they were there to keep her from flying away in the wind!).

After the fireworks we walked around for a little while longer, enjoying the atmosphere and taking a few more pictures. Then it was one last walk through the magical castle before heading home to our beds! What an end to our Disney adventures! We can hardly wait to go back!

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