Thursday, May 23, 2013

Disneyland Wrapup

Finally, I have a chance to finish up the Disneyland post.  I can't promise this will be the last time I reference the vacation trip of a lifetime, but this will be the last post devoted to capturing the adventures.

Face paintings were $17 each.  I couldn't believe my ears when the lady quoted that so I looked at Kendra for clarification after clearing my ears with my fingers.  Kendra said, "Just pay it...  they really want painted faces and this is Disneyland."  I reluctantly forced the cash from my wallet.  Ouma jumped in and paid for one of the two.  The anguish on my face must not have been hidden very well.  You'd think after leaking money for the past week like the BP oil spill that $17 wouldn't phase me, but it did.  They were happy and therefore I was happy.  Here you have Marie the kitty and snake.

Uncle Logan is a hero Easton and Layla look up to.  Aunt Bree will be officially part of the family this August when they get married, but as far as the 4 Webbs are concerned she's already family.  Anyway, Logan gladly entertained the twins as we waited to talk with Crush the turtle.

Nutrition went out the window for us.  We ate amusement park food like ice cream and pretzels dipped in caramel dipped in chocolate dipped in M&Ms...  and BBQ ribs.  Tasty good times, but my body misses the consistency of meals and meal times...

The Redwood Creek Challenge Trail included a very short zipline for kids.  Easton and Layla attempted and succeeded.  I measured success by whether they hung on when they hit the end of the line and it jerked them around.  Just so you know, this zipline test of strength was a foreshadowing of BIG things to come.

The rock climbing area was well suited for kids.  Layla said, "I can climb to the top of those rocks easily!"  We had to explain to her that the objective is bouldering where you climb across, not up the rock wall.  Once she figured this out she jumped on the wall and bouldered like the strong girl we know she is.

Autotopia was a success for Layla and Kendra, but a fail for Easton.  The two girl drivers easily navigated the turns and accepted the course correction from the metal rail between the tires.  Easton didn't like the way the steering wheel would lurch out of his hands when he missed turns.  He eventually gave up and sat back in his chair.  I don't think he'll be as excited to get his driver's license as Layla will be.

The Storybook Land ride was mediocre, but fun for all of us.  Anything in a boat is almost guaranteed to be at least tolerable.  Our guide lacked emotion or passion on our tour, but the scenes were intricately designed and the foliage very well maintained.  

Toontown contained age-appropriate rides and sights for Easton and Layla.  We waited by the gates for early entry as soon as it opened.

After hanging out with Mickey in his house we rode the Gadget's Go Coaster.  very short, but the twins were able to ride in their own separate car.  And so the independence begins...

We saw park-goers walking around with whole turkey legs.  We found them in Frontierland and enjoyed one ourselves.  I held it and we gnawed on it like cavemen.

I felt like a bird bringing home a worm to share with my babies who have their mouths open.

Another ride we wanted to hit before leaving town was the Jungle Cruise.  By this time on Saturday the park was packed and lines were painfully long.  We hit a threshold here where we had to make a judgement call whether the ride was worth the wait or not.  We decided it was worth it.  The twins weren't scared, but they weren't overly impressed either.  Being the fourth day in Disneyland may have had something to do with it.  Had we ridden this ride on the first day they may have reacted differently.

I waited in line with Layla to meet Merida while the rest of the family rode Small World.  One of Layla's highlights was meeting Merida and getting her autograph.  I don't mind missing the ride because my desire was to spend quality time with our family even if that means just standing together in line.

As we wandered through the park I saw a man sitting on a park bench.  He looked so much like our friend from church I did a double take.  I noticed it really was him!  We swapped stories and captured a picture of the serendipitous meeting.  We live in a small world even though I didn't ride the ride.  

Star Tours rocks!  Kendra bailed because rides like this make her sick.  The rest of us enjoyed the entertaining and action packed ride.  Layla knew we weren't really going to fly or go anywhere but the floor just moves.  Once she digested that she was fine for the duration of the ride.

Riding the Monorail was high up on Easton's list of Disneyland highlights.  Even though it isn't a ride he was excited to experience the train ride every day.

Easton's love for Space Mountain is understandable considering his interest in all things related to space.  He did his best to convince Layla to join us.  If he doesn't end up being an astronaut I'll be surprised.  

I avoided attempting to sum up our Disneyland experience in a single paragraph because what made the vacation so special was the little things.  one experience and one ride at a time.  one character and one stepping stone of bravery at a time.

In some ways this trip was an extreme example of what I want to be known for as a parent.  It's not about giving the twins material things or even buying them experiences.  It's about being a part of what they enjoy and sharing the moment with them.  I don't want them to think they are the center of the universe, but I do want them to know I'm interested in them and want to be a part of their life in the most entrenched way possible.  More than just having them know I love them and I care about them, I want them to know I like spending time with them doing what they want and being involved in it.

We could have chosen, selfishly, to go to Disneyland anytime during our 10 years of marriage, but we chose this time because we wanted to share the quality and quantity time with Easton and Layla.  Mission accomplished!

See you soon!

P.S. here is a list of rides we rode in case you're curious how productive four days in Disneyland can really be:

Cars race
Tower of Terror
Space Mountain
Orbiter rocket ride
Small World
Pirates of the Caribbean
Winnie the Pooh

Disney parade
Star Tour
Peter Pan
Jedi training
Mickey Ferris wheel
World of Color

Character breakfast
California screaming
Goofy sky school
jumping jellyfish
Ariel ride
PT Flea bumper cars
Heimlich's chew chew train
Ladybug ride
Cars tractor
Aladdin show
Turtle Crush
Pixar parade
redwood creek challenge trail
Grizzly river

Buzz lightyear
Space mountain
storybook land
Mickeys house to meet him
Gadget coaster
jungle cruise
Train tour

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