Disneyland at Christmastime is so magical! We were lucky recently to take a mini vacay there to kick off our Christmas season. This year also marked my first time to California Adventure Park. In all the years it has been open, I’d actually never been. We have been going so seldom to Magic Kingdom that, when we go, I always choose the old-school, classic Disneyland for the day. We’re set now on buying season passes, though, because the kiddos are at the age when they just really, truly love it and can experience most rides!

The day before we left, I came down with the kiddos’ stomach bug from Thanksgiving week. Packing for three people for three days of clothes in between waves of queasiness was not the easiest venture I’ve ever undertaken, but the job got done. Fortunately I had no fever and was otherwise not too badly off, though my intestines never quite straightened out until a couple of days after we got home. This actually worked in my favor, because I wasn’t too hungry and not even tempted (as I had feared I might be) to overeat caloric park food, so the timing was good as far as that goes. Ever the optimist, I just decided to ignore the stomach bug as best I could and to have an excellent time. And we did!

We stayed in The Grand Californian, which is quite possibly our favorite of the hotels during this time of the year. So cozy! Over the days we were there, the rainy and grey weather made for a relatively uncrowded space, and we had hardly any waiting at either park with walk-ons to several rides that usually have long lines (like Pirates, Space Mountain, and Haunted Mansion). At Disneyland alone, we fit in fifteen rides and met six characters. Fortunately the drizzle still allowed for the showing of World of Color, the Christmas parade, the fireworks, and the snow. Last year, the storminess prohibited the fireworks, so we were lucky to see them this time.

When it was time to go, even I did not want to leave!



Eric loved the Monorail: “Me ride Monorail. Monorail take me somewhere.” Oh, he was as pleased as punch.



Katie was so excited to meet Jack and Sally—she loves them!




And she dove into Merida!



Our annual picture with the kiddos on Snow White’s bridge…it is a tradition. I happened to have a pic taken there when I was newly pregnant with Katie. Now we take one every time we go, which has been once a year up until now.



Enjoying the Christmas parade… I also had the kiddos’ silhouettes cut this time. My parents have silhouettes of my brother and me; my Nana has silhouettes of all of her children. Disneyland: traditions and memories.



Meeting Winnie the Pooh!



The first night, we had dinner at Ariel’s Grotto. We met Ariel, Snow White, Belle, Cinderella, and Aurora. I think I was as excited as Katie and Eric!



Eric outside of Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree. He was tall enough for this ride in Cars Land, and we were all thrilled that he was. Big boy! During lunch, we saw the real Mater drive by…



Happy Christmas!