It all started as a plan to take the kiddos to visit Dan's Grandma and Grandpa Olive down in southern California -- Dan didn't think he could get away from work and I knew I couldn't drive out there by myself, so when my cousin Kiki invited us to a baby shower in Vegas for my other cousin Sarah and my mom asked if I wanted to go, it seemed like the perfect opportunity. Mom and I would drive down to California on Sunday, visit for a couple days and take the kids to Disneyland, then head back up and hit the baby shower on the way home. Perfect! It sounded so fun, in fact, that my dad decided to come along, then my sisters Ange and Crystal. Then my dad reminded Dan things were behind at work and he actually has more vacation time than he thought, so Dan ended up being able to come, anyway! By the time we actually got going last Sunday, we had a whole van-full of fun. The kids had had colds the few days before, but they seemed to be getting better. (And given that we were supposed to go to Disneyland back in October but were foiled by swine flu, they'd have had to have bubonic plague for me to cancel again.) We started out by driving down to Fillmore and going to the baby blessings of Roxanna and Ellie Jo (daughters of my cousins Sandy and Joe, respectively), and then hit the road. We pulled into the hotel around 11 p.m. and headed straight to bed so we'd be ready for a nice visit with Grandpa and Grandma in the morning. A good night's rest was just not meant to be -- Sammy's congestion from his cold had, thanks to the pressure changes from going through the mountains, suddenly developed into a whopping middle ear infection that kept him up with intense pain for most of the night. At about 4 in the morning we called Bapa to come and help give him a blessing, and thankfully he was able to go to sleep shortly thereafter. In the morning we headed over to G&G Olive's, and Dan and Eliza and Josh played while I took Sammy to a nearby urgent care. Eliza had fun playing dollies with Grandma!
After G&G had to leave for Grandpa's dialysis, we headed back to the apartment for lunch and then to California Adventure. We had only planned to go for one day, but we found 2-for-1 passes at the grocery store and couldn't resist going for an extra day. The weather was lovely and the lines were short -- perfect!
The next day was going to be our Disneyland day. We woke up early to a sky full of heavy grey clouds but thought, "Hey, what's a little rain?" We stopped at the grocery store for a few more umbrellas and away we went! The first couple of hours at Disneyland were great -- not more than a drip here and there and the longest line we stood in was about 5 minutes. Shortly after lunch, though, the rain began in earnest. The kids were troopers and we hustled from ride to ride for a few more hours until everyone was soaked and the wind started up. At that point, it was definitely time to go -- the streets of Disney were actually flooding! All the kids' teeth were chattering and Josh was in full meltdown mode, so we hustled to the trams (actually the only real line we stood in all day!). So we didn't get in as much Disneyland as we'd hoped, but with no lines we still got to ride plenty of rides, and we still got to meet Mickey and Minnie and Goofy and Tinkerbell, so it was all good. And I mean no lines literally -- on several rides we just walked right up and got into the waiting empty cars. Good times!
All in all, it was quite the adventure! We had a really great time despite all the unexpected detours and bumps in the road. We were so glad we got to spend those few days having fun as a family and with Mom and Dad and Ange and Crystal. We will definitely remember this one forever!
If you'd like to see more pictures of our fun adventures, visit the Facebook album here.