Tag Archives: featured

Planning your trip to Disneyland.

You’re finally doing it, you’re taking that trip to Disneyland you’ve been talking about for months or even years now. You are super excited but also overwhelmed because you don’t even know where to start. Here’s a few tips I find helpful when we plan our trips.

When to go

One of the first things we like to do when we plan our trips is check and see the best time to go. Some things we look at are: will any rides be closed, are there other events going on that we will have to pay extra for, and how busy will it be? We wanted to go during Halloween time this year but Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party tickets were already sold out (they usually go on sale some time in June) so we decided to wait. Before and after Halloween time and before and after Christmas time some rides are closed to add or remove decorations so you want to check the dates to make sure you’re not missing anything by going around those times. We missed The Haunted Mansion the last time we went because they were getting it ready for Halloween. If you’re worried about it being insanely busy check out disneylanddaily.com they have a handy little calendar that gives you an idea of what it will be like.

Book the trip

We book our trips through Expedia, they have pretty good deals and you earn points that go towards free flights and hotel stays. Most people fly into LAX but we prefer John Wayne Airport, it’s a lot smaller and a lot quicker to get through. When it comes to hotels they have a lot of great ones, the Disney ones are fantastic from what I hear, we’ve never stayed at one since they are a bit spendy. We like the Peacock Suites, it’s not too expensive and they have a pool and two hot tubs. They also have a common area with a pool table, foos ball and an X box One. Fun fact they have dvds and board games you can check out from the front desk which is fantastic when you need to entertain kids. The also have two grills and a seating area on the roof top where you can also get a partial view of Disney’s fireworks at night.

What are you going to do while you’re there

Will you go to one or both parks? What events will be going on? We’re going for Christmas and they have quite a few things going on such as snow at the castle certain times in the day, Disney ¡Viva Navidad!, the Christmas parade, and much more. Definitely look into getting fast passes so you don’t spend the whole day waiting in lines. Decide if you’re going to eat there or if you’re going to bring food. We typically bring a backpack with snacks and eat at a few places there as well. If you plan to drink water I suggest bringing your own. The water from the drinking fountains doesn’t taste very good and the do sell bottles of water but they are not cheap. Look into renting a locker if you plan to buy things that you don’t want to carry around. If you have small children you can rent a stroller for $15 a day. If you have a smartphone be sure to download the Disneyland app. You can scan your tickets, check ride times, see where characters are in the park, and a lot more.

Have fun

I think the most important thing to do while you’re there is have fun and just take it all in. It really is a feeling like nothing else. One of my husbands favorite things is once you walk through the gates into the park, you don’t hear the outside world anymore. They really do try and make it like nothing else exists. I could go on forever and I’m sure there’s things I forgot to mention, I think I’ve covered all the basics though. Hopefully this is helpful for those who are planning to go and hopefully you love it as much as we do.

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Have you met my kids?

Tomorrow is the day. I will wake up, get ready for work, and drive right passed that little market that screams “energy sold here!” In theory it’s a fantastic idea. I mean energy drinks are bad for you right? Well yes, they are but have you met my kids?

I love my kids more than anything but I’m pretty sure I haven’t slept in 11 years. Some days I’m not even sure how I’m upright. Since I plan to talk about them a lot I thought I should introduce you to them. Let’s start with the oldest.

Dominic is eleven going on teenager. He can’t wait to grow up an make his own rules. He’s a super creative kid who loves reading and making comics. He has autism but he doesn’t let them stop him. He works harder than any kid I know. I’ve learned so much from him. He’s a Grade A pain in the ass but so are the other two. He loves Disneyland and video games and wants to be a vlogger someday.

Ukiah is a four year old ball of energy, seriously I don’t think this kid ever really gets tired. He’s super smart and is constantly surprising me with the things that come out of his mouth. He has a fantastic imagination and is the loviest kid you’ll ever meet. Like his brother he loves Disney and gaming. He wants to grow up to be a doctor someday.

Last but not least is Alice. She just turned one this October is the most fascinating little girl I’ve ever met. She’s also a real spitfire with a fierce attitude. She definitely knows what she wants. She recently started walking which has been an adventure. She is so strange but in a wonderful way and it’s been exciting watching her discover new things. She loves her brothers and they adore her. I have no doubt they will always protect her. I’m excited for our trip to Disneyland in December with her being a bit older. It’s going to be great watching her take it all in.

Being a parent is my favorite thing I’ve ever done. Watching these guys turn into their own person is and will be an amazing and exhausting. Special shout out to Nos energy drinks and coffee. I couldn’t do this without you guys! Thanks for sticking around and reading about my littles, I hope you’ll hit that follow button and be around for my next post.

Flying with small children.

The idea of traveling with small children, especially babies can be stressful. So stressful that you tell yourself “maybe next year, or the year after that”. I get it, I was totally you, there was no way I was going to travel with a baby who wasn’t even one, a four year old with so much energy he can put the energizer bunny to shame, and an eleven year old with asd.

For months my husband tried convincing me to go down to Disneyland but I was afraid of everything that could go wrong. My daughter hates the car so an hour drive to the airport plus a two hour flight was a recipe for disaster. What if she cried the whole way? It would have been miserable. What if my boys fought the whole way, or my four year old got scared, or the noise and crowded space caused my oldest freak out? All the what ifs fed my anxiety and had me convinced it would be horrible experience.

After months of convincing and a trip down there himself my husband finally talked me into going for my birthday and guess what? We made it through the flight without a fit and the kids loved the parks. I even managed to take all three kids to Disneyland for 9 hours by myself when my husband was sick.

Being prepared is a must if you’re going to fly with kids. Here are some things I found useful.

Pick your seats ahead of time

You will have to see if this is available for the airline you choose to fly (We fly Alaska) This comes in handy when there is more than three of you and you want to make sure you all stay close together. For Alaska, I downloaded their app and added our flight to the ‘Trips’ section. From there I selected the trip and tapped on our names which gave me the ability to choose our seats.

Take advantage of early boarding

Passengers traveling with small children are given the option of boarding first. This gives you a chance to get your bags put away and everyone settled without worrying about the people who will soon be seated around you.

Bring something to keep them occupied

Before our trip I loaded the iPad with digital movies. You know those slips that come with your Blu Ray you swear you’ll never use but decide to keep anyway? Those are slips of sanity! I spent a good hour entering codes into the ‘Movies Anywhere’ app. If you do this, make sure you download them for offline use otherwise you will need WiFi to watch them. Also don’t forget the headphones, while you may be thrilled to watch Coco for the millionth time, I guarantee you not everyone on the plane will feel the same. If electronics aren’t your thing, playing cards and coloring books go a long way.

Bring snacks

Food is offered on the plane but if you don’t want to $10 or an assortment of cheese your kids probably won’t eat anyway I suggest bringing easy to eat without making a huge mess snacks. We brought goldfish, fruit snacks, and fruit bars for our kids.

Something for their ears

Pressure changes are uncomfortable for everyone but children may not deal with it as easily as an adult. If your child is old enough I suggest gum. Pacifiers are great option for babies and for nurslings pop them on the boob if you feel comfortable in doing so. I nursed my daughter on take off and she ended up sleeping for half of the flight.

I think the most important thing to remember is to just breathe. Things might not go according to plan, we missed our flight home and sat in the airport for five hours waiting for the next flight but we survived. Your baby may get fussy, I think most people are pretty understanding, pay no mind to the ones who aren’t. There’s a good chance things are going to go a lot smoother than you think and it will be totally worth it.