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Old 10-24-2012, 03:17 PM   #1
luvslikepi
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Trip Report!! Final Update 2/26/2013 - December 7-9 Impulsive Holiday Trip: Day 1

Well, I did it...I booked a trip for baby and me for December 7-December 9. I'll start with some introductions....

I'm Sarah and I am a certified Disney freak-a-zoid. It all started when I was 5 years old and enjoyed my first trip to Disneyland. Then in 2000 my fate was sealed when I went to WDW for my 21st birthday...I fell absolutely in love. The following year I was a member of the WDW College Program and by 2003 I had managed to convince my history capstone professor that I could write an awesome paper on Walt Disney and his "Defense of American Culture." I did...it was a hit...and now I'm on my way to a PhD.

My husband deployed earlier this month and we thought about taking a spur of the moment trip to DL with Lillian (Lilly - whose name my husband liked when I shared it with him but just happened to forget to tell him that it was Walt Disney's wife's name...hee-hee)www, our baby, but opted not to...fast forward 4 weeks and I just felt an urge to take her...horrible urge, like I was being drawn to DL. She will be just over 4 months and is very alert and loves to look at lights and sounds and I think we'll have a great time.

Here's Lilly with Pascal -


On the side you can see a small picture of Mama and Daddy at WDW a few years ago.

We'll be flying into SNA on Delta in the afternoon of December 7. I've booked us for two nights at the Grand Californian because it's closer to the parks and I feel it will be easier on both of us. In all honestly I have no set plans for this trip. I don't think you can do a lot of planning for Disneyland with a baby in tow...so this will be a big wing-it trip. My only goal is to enjoy some Disney time with my baby girl and take lots of pictures.

I'm thinking the best option for travel from the airport to the resort will be a towncar. If anyone can chime in on this one please let me know.

44 Days until our trip. I cannot wait.

Last night I ordered an Ergo. Lilly has two other carriers, one a Peanut Shell sling she hates and another that get's uncomfortable for me after about an hour. We can't have that. I will also be taking her stroller/car seat combo. I'm hesitant to leave the car seat at home because of travel from the airport to the resort and back.

For our transport I am considering getting a town car. We usually do the Super Shuttle but I think a straight trip would be better for Lilly and I after a plane trip - since this will be her first big trip away from home.

Luckily I have a friend who is 30 minutes away from Disneyland and will be joining us on Friday or Sunday - she's done Disney with her child since he was a baby and is going to help me maneuver a bit for my first attempt.

Here is my "Wish List" for Lilly while we are there:

Ride Dumbo
Attempt Pirates and Haunted Mansion
Ride Heimlich's Chew-Chew train
Monsters Inc ride
Meet a princess or two
Introduce her to Mickey
Introduce her to momma's favorite car Mater
Enjoy the sites and sounds of each "land."
The Carousel's in each park.

That's about all I really have planned and even those are contingent on her. I'm not sure how she'd handle the fireworks or parades but we might try dependent on her mood. She loves anything that explodes or sparkles on television (She really loved to watch The Avengers) so she'd probably be ok.

As for meals I'm taking it as it comes too. I've always traveled on the meal plan - it has always worked very well for my family before but I'm not on this trip. I figure it will probably be easier to snack through the parks then plan any sit downs since I'm still nursing her. We will definitely be putting the Baby Care Center's to good use.

If anyone has any tips or tricks for travel with an infant please share them here. At the end of the trip I will be creating an extensive website because I just have not found much on traveling to Disney with an infant. Found pieces here and there but nothing really grand standing out.

Last edited by luvslikepi; 02-26-2013 at 09:33 AM. Reason: Update
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Old 10-26-2012, 09:25 AM   #2
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Update

Yesterday I booked non-stop flights for us on Delta. I was able to get a great deal....$5 on the flight due to my Sky Miles rewards. I know a lot of people don't like Delta but I've always enjoyed their customer service. They were incredibly helpful and Lilly will be flying "in arms" as I want to be able to nurse her if needed during take-off and landing.

I also arranged car service from SNA to the Grand and back using Super Shuttle's Execucar's Service - a town car. I chose this option because I felt, again, that it would be the most convenient with an infant. We are required to bring her car seat but since I was planning that anyway since it's part of her stroller it's not a huge deal. The cost was $189 round trip - but the service meets us at baggage claim (again a convenience with a baby) and escorts us directly to the car. Not to mention there will be not other stops as with many other ground transportation options.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:22 PM   #3
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Yay!!

Grandma and Grandpa have decided they want to join us on the trip. They will driving to the Disneyland Resort to meet us on Dec 7. They will also be staying at the Grand Californian. Should make for a much better trip.
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:53 AM   #4
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One day and counting

Grandma and Grandpa are on their way to the Disneyland Resort and by this time tomorrow DisBaby and I will be at the airport. I will be doing live updates as we travel and explore Disneyland with a full trip report when I return....with tons of pictures.

Please stay tuned....
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Old 12-11-2012, 10:49 AM   #5
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Travel and Day 1 - DCA with DisBaby

Our trip was absolutely fantastic. We got home Sunday night and I wish we were still at Disneyland. I will be working on the Trip Report for the next few days. I’m still waiting for our Photopass+ download so that I can complete the trip report with as many pictures as possible.

Travel Day/Day 1 at Disneyland Resort

Lilly and I were up early because our retired military working dog was being picked up at 7AM by his doggy-sitter, Mel. I also had to get our two other dogs to Ruffledales for doggy sitting. Mel got Arek and a half hour after I packed up DisBaby, our golden retriever and shih-tzu and we headed down the road to drop them off. Ruffledales is a great doggy day care/boarding location. The dogs get to play nearly all day with other dogs so it’s a great way for them to burn off energy.

After dropping the pups off we got on the freeway and headed to Salt Lake International – about a 40 minute drive from home. I decided to park in the garage connected to the terminals, which was expensive, but worth not having to wait for any shuttles with an infant. I traveled light since Grandma and Grandpa had left the day before with our stroller and luggage. All I had was DisBaby in her car seat and a diaper bag. If my husband was not deployed I’m sure we would have had a lot more but with no one to help I needed to make sure that travel was as simple as possible. I always arrive to the airport far too early. We had about 3 hours til our flight boarded so DisBaby and I made our way toward our gate, stopped for a diaper change and found a seat near D11. We waited, and waited….and waited. Disbaby had a bottle and took a nap and then it came time to board.



Although I had purchased an economy comfort seat at the front of the plane for extra leg room and boarding time we were able to pre-board without difficulty. Once settled in our seat I arranged some items in my feeding pillow pocket, bottle, travel formula, pacifier, breastfeeding cover, just in case I needed them. DisBaby did so well.

I was so nervous that she was going to have ear issues but she fell asleep before we even took off, slept through nearly the entire flight. By the time we debarked it was time for another diaper change (with a clothes change since she’d decided to have a small blow out). That was ok since I could change her into her Minnie Sleeper. I stopped at a gift shop for a snack since I’d not eaten anything since 6AM that morning…starving. Our towncar driver was waiting for us and after a short walk to the parking area we were heading toward the resort.

On the way I called Grandma and Grandpa to see where they were. They’d beaten us to the Grand Californian and were checking in…it was about 1:30 California time. We arrived at the hotel around 2PM and found a comfortable spot in the lobby to wait until our rooms were ready.







I had to check in with the front to show them my military ID for our discounted rooms and everything was ready to go. They would text us when our room was ready. My room 4218 was ready first at about 3:30 so we all went upstairs to relax. I prepped DisBaby and we had all of the luggage brought up so we would have her stroller. We also had to call housekeeping because there was not a pack and play in our room. Grandma and I decided to head into Californa Adventures because we were starving and wanted to get the most out of our tickets. Grandpa was tired and wanted to take a nap so we split up.

We used the hotel entrance to California Adventure, went through the bag check, where I was complimented on my organized diaper bag. We headed toward Paradise Pier and decided on Cocina Cucamonga Mexican Grill for dinner. I chose the Chicken Tamale platos and grandma go the carne asada and chicken tamale platos. Usually I’m really good about taking picture of my food before I start eating but I was insanely hungry and ate quite a bit before I remembered. The tamales were excellent.



After eating we headed to the Baby Care center to make DisBaby a bottle. We were there for about 20 minutes when grandma got a text saying their room 4220 was ready. Grandpa also called a few minutes after saying he was ready. Because the parade was about to start we told him to use the main entrance and we would meet him at the front gate, since I had to go to the Photopass center to get my Photopass + card. He didn’t listen so we ended up waiting about a half hour for him out in front of Mortimer’s as he maneuvered through the parade route. That was ok. Grandma and I were enjoying the people watching. DisBaby was enjoying the lights and I got her giggling like mad when I got excited about the light up Mickey balloons. I’ve got a video of us the next day in Adventureland with her giggling like crazy that I’ll post later. Grandpa wasn’t hungry so we decided to head into BugsLand and DisBaby’s first ride Heimlich’s Chew Chew train. We walked right on and even though it was dark DisBaby was quite enthralled.



After we went into Carsland and looked around the shops, watched Radiator Springs Racers and I decided DisBaby and I needed to go back to the hotel and rest. If you look closely at the below picture you'll notice the flag is at half staff, it was the anniversary of Pearl Harbor and I was extremely happy that Sarge's Surplus Hut had followed this tradition.



It was about 7:30PM and we were both tired. Grandma and Grandpa looked around Carsland some more, took some photopass pictures and ended up eating dinner at Storytellers. DisBaby and I went back to the hotel…and I was pretty disappointed with the hotel pack and play. The one I have at home is much easier to use as it has an adjustable height bed area. This one was not only hard to get to lock into place, it looked old and I just wasn’t happy with it…so I ended up doing something I’d never done before…co-sleeping with DisBaby. It turned out ok though and I actually got some of the best sleep I’ve had since hubs went out of country.

The first day was pretty rushed. We didn’t do a lot but we were all pretty tired from travelling. Stay tuned for more from Day 2 when we go to Disneyland Park for DisBaby’s first visit to the Happiest Place on Earth.

All of the pictures from the trip can be viewed here:

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...2178656&type=3
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:20 AM   #6
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How fun! I have a Lilly too *she's 9! And we live very close to HAFB. I can't see the pictures here *at work* I'll check them later
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:21 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DisneyMomma81 View Post
How fun! I have a Lilly too *she's 9! And we live very close to HAFB *did you drive or fly to S CA? We've driven for our last few visits to DLR. I can't see the pictures here *at work* I'll check them later
We flew but grandma and grandpa drove. I don't have much leave left after taking maternity so that was the best option for us.
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Old 12-11-2012, 12:16 PM   #8
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I'm in! So fun that Grandma and Grandpa could join you on the trip. I might add that DisBaby's Day 1 outfit is ADORABLE! Just right for a comfortable day in the parks.

I'm curious if you felt the Photopass + was worth it. (I hope you did as I have one for our upcoming trip to WDW).

Thanks for sharing!

TK
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Old 12-11-2012, 12:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tksbaskets View Post

I'm curious if you felt the Photopass + was worth it. (I hope you did as I have one for our upcoming trip to WDW).

TK
I thought it was worth it but we had over 100 pictures taken with it....we're kind of photo freaks when it comes to Disney. I think anything less than 50 pictures taken it starts to lose it's value monetarily....but for me those memories being preserved is priceless. I had also pre-ordered it so it was significantly less than what it was advertised as.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:22 AM   #10
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Day 2

Day 2

We decided to meet at my room at 6:30AM in order to “wander” toward the main gates of Disneyland for early morning. We didn’t want to spend a lot of time waiting in line to get into the parks with DisBaby. This morning DisBaby wore an adorable Minnie Mouse outfit.


We entered the park and stopped for Photopass pics



We took a leisurely stroll down Main Street and entered Fantasyland. Our first stop was Bibbity Boppity Boutique to see if they had baby socks…Momma completely forgot to pack them so lil DisBaby’s feet were cold. They didn’t have any so we made sure she was all wrapped up in her blanket to keep her warmer.

We decided to give Pinocchio’s Daring Journey a try. It was so hard for me to enjoy the rides because I was watching DisBaby the whole time trying to gauge her reaction. I’m not sure she enjoyed Pinocchio…it seemed really loud to me…but there were no tears so on exiting we headed toward It’s a Small World.

Grandma and I rode with DisBaby and from the look on her face she was a bit tired and pouty.



But once we entered the ride she brightened up a bit.

http://youtu.be/T_SHRn3cByw

After we got off It’s a Small World, DisBaby decided it was time for a nap….she passed out for about an hour and we headed toward Tomorrowland Terrace for breakfast burritos and coffee. While Grandma and Grandpa ordered and watched DisBaby I ran to Star Tours to grab fastpasses for Grandpa and I. This was the first chance to see the new Star Tours and as I’m a big Star Wars fan I was very excited. I was also excited to see Fastpass Gonk Droids. I don’t remember them from previous trips:



Our return time was for 8:50-9:50 AM and it was only 8AM so I went back to Grandma and Grandpa where we sat for awhile, listening to Star Wars music and munching on breakfast.



After we ate it was about 8:30 and DisBaby was ready for a diaper change and feeding. I headed off to the Baby Care Center on Main Street for warm water and comfortable changing tables.



By the time we finished it was Star Tours fast pass time. Grandma took DisBaby and sat on the bench near the Disney Vacation Club booth across from Star Traders. I think I’ve almost worn her down on purchasing for her grand babies.

Grandpa and I went to Star Tours with a five minute wait with Fastpass. I was so excited to ride and was impressed with the 3D effects and the sequences we saw. Millennium Falcon, Kayshhk (The Wookiee Planet) and Naboo. I really wish I could have taken a few more spins but it was difficult with an infant and the wait times were insane this weekend without a fastpass.

We exited, browsed the shops a bit as I had vowed to buy some items to “geek out” my office at work. I would return the next day to complete my shopping.

DisBaby needed another diaper change so we headed toward the Space Mountain bathrooms, Grandma changed the diaper while I went to get fastpasses for Space Mountain for grandpa and I. Our fastpass time was only a few minutes away so we hung out on a few of the benches outside of Space Mountain until our time arrived.



I get really annoyed by hands in front of faces on rides. I got them back later by photobombing them as they took pictures outside.

We decided to head into Frontierland, where DisBaby transferred from her stroller into her Ergobaby carrier. She was starting to get fussy from sitting down and enjoys being up to look at everything around her.



We tried to ride Pirates but it was closed, there was a problem with too much water so they were draining a little bit out. I stopped for Haunted Mansion fastpasses then we decided to head toward Hungry Bear to get some more water to make DisBaby another bottle. She ate quickly and since Pooh had no wait we walked right on. I tried to get a video of DisBaby but if she sees my phone she get’s enthralled by it…so we’ve got short ride video:

http://youtu.be/qnZXeds_n04

By the time we’d finished feeding DisBaby and riding Pooh it was time for Haunted Mansion. Even with fastpasses I think we waited about 15 minutes to get inside. Again, I think DisBaby was a little overwhelmed with Haunted Mansion but no tears.

We were ready for lunch and went to The French Market, which used to be one of my favorites but I wasn’t impressed this time. I had the Jambalaya and grandma and grandpa had Beef Stew in a breadbowl.








After lunch we wandered through the shops in Adventureland on our way back to the hotel for an afternoon nap. Where DisBaby decided to have a laughing fit…when I was showing her some baby stuffed animals and then I started saying “balloooooons!”

http://youtu.be/uaiURjN-tXI

Grandma bought a baby Lady for DisBaby (she loves her Lady stuffed animals) and a baby Dumbo for her newest grandbaby.



Nap time!!



After nap time!!



This is where things got a little nutty. We decided to go back into DCA instead of into DL. So we entered through the hotel entrance and again wandered into Carsland where we took a lot of Photopass pics. I’m not going to post them all because there are a lot but you can view them at the photo link I’ll post at the end of the TR for the day.

DisBaby was very tired and spent most of the evening napping in her stroller…we definitely wore her out. Grandma and Grandpa took DisBaby for the evening so I could do some shopping and wandering myself. I wanted to head over to DL too see if I could get a glimpse of Edward James Olmos at the Processional…I didn’t even make it past the bridge into Main Street. It was an absolute madhouse. So I went back into DCA and asked Grandma and Grandpa where they were….across from Award Weiners getting some dinner. DisBaby was very unhappy by the time I got there and I didn’t realize I was out of travel formula in our bag. Thankfully I’d packed my breastfeeding cover and nursed her for a while to calm her back down but she was pretty fussy. Grandma and grandpa headed back to the hotel with her and of course she calmed right down and started cooing 5 minutes later.

I went to Carsland to try Cozy Cones. I decided on Chicken Verde and a Coke Zero in one of the orange collectible cups…cost about $20 but I really wanted one of those orange cones. At this point I was tired and cranky so I went back to the hotel, picked up DisBaby from grandma and grandpa’s room and we went to bed.

Coming next….DisBaby meets some Disney Princesses!!!

View all my photos here: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...2178656&type=3
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:20 PM   #11
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I think it's great that grandma and grandpa shared this trip with you. The picture in front of the DL railroad is just top notch! DISbaby will love it when she's older and can show her kids pictures from her first trip to Disneyland.

Great trip report. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:07 AM   #12
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Hi there!

I had to see your pics- Lilly loks SOOOOO happy in DL! How wonderful this trip must have been! Did you like the GC? We are staying there this summer- our first visit to DL,just like Lilly- how exciting!

Hope to hear more....
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:13 AM   #13
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You kido is SO cute!
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:31 AM   #14
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I just realized I have not finished this TR ...shame on me. Life took over.

The Grand is beautiful! I've stayed there before and I can't say enough good about the hotel and its staff. They are wonderful. Plus you can't beat your own entrance to California Adventures.

podsnel, I grew up in Disneyland since we live on the West coast and it's got a special place in my heart. The vibe is very different from WDW because it's smaller, it's the original. Walt walked those streets all the time. You're going to have a blast and if you have any Disneyland questions let me know.
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:32 AM   #15
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Final Day....sorry for the long delay

Life took over after this trip. I am in my final semester of actual coursework for my PhD and in addition to taking care of DISbaby I'm also working full time. Again you can see all the pictures from this trip at:

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...2178656&type=3

I probably won't be putting many of the pics into this section just so I can get the TR finished but they are wonderful pics.

It was our final morning and we had early entry to DCA. Today was the day DISbaby was going to meet the princesses so I had to dress her in this outfit:



After getting dressed we made our way to the main gate to waste some time before opening. On entering the park we headed directly toward Radiator Springs. Grandma and Grandpa took DISBaby and headed to Flo's Cafe for breakfast while I made a beeline for the single rider line of Radiator Springs Racers.....thank God for single rider lines. I was on in less than 10 minutes. What a fabulous ride. So well themed throughout and so much fun. Our car won the race.



I then headed to Flo's for my breakfast. I heard so many good things about this I had to get it:



I am not a big sweet breakfast fan but this was absolutely amazing. Must eat with dark coffee for sure.

DISbaby was fast asleep so after breakfast we wandered up to Carthay Circle and took tons of photopass pics.

After DL park opened we strolled over. Grandma and Grandpa made some stops on Main Street for character pics while DISbaby and I headed straight back to Fantasyland to meet the Princesses.

It was a hit....DISbaby especially loved Aurora:



That picture and the smile on her face made it all worth it.

We also met Cinderella, Snow White and Merida. We didn't have time to make it to Rapunzel since we had to leave the parks fairly early in the day. After meeting the princesses we went to ride Pirates....which DISbaby did not seem to appreciate all that much (she tensed on each dip) but no crying so that was a plus.

We wandered down Main Street, getting some snacks and shopping our way out of the park. I bought a cute Alice in Wonderland Red Queen top hat for Lilly's first birthday party (we're planning on a "One"derland themed tea party).

After our shopping we went back to the Grand to check out. We sat in the lobby enjoying coffee and company waiting for my ride to the airport. It was crazy at checkout and in the pick up area and really warm. Eventually the towncar showed up and we were headed back home. The airport was not busy which made it simple to get through security with an infant and then we settled down for the short trip home.

The trip was amazing though I would have like to have stayed a few more days to slow down even more with an infant. But I would have done it again in a heartbeat.
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