Time to Find Out How Old We're Getting - Nov 2018 - TR complete Jan 8th!

Jaina

Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
Joined
Jul 22, 2005
After we got through the scan-in point, the line actually moved pretty quickly, and we were having a hard time figuring out where they were hiding the posted 120 minute standby line. I still have no clue... It was 25 minutes from getting into the FP line to getting into the car. It was a super fun ride, and my sister loved it! :) I like it during the daytime (especially if the air isn't hot) but it's so much cooler at night! I was glad we waited and timed our MaxPass selection for after dark.


On our way out of Carsland, I saw what would become my souvenir of the trip. I didn't plan to buy anything, but this little guy was so adorable, and I knew I could store him with our Christmas decorations and not just add to the general clutter. I love stuffed "animals," but there's really not a good place for them in life, at least not for the Mom. We have our kids keep theirs to less than 8/10, so... but I love him, and he was only $18. :) The line was always too long to get picture with the real thing, but we got one anyway.


It was 6:30, and we headed to use another FP for Guardians. :) We had time to stop and get another couple Photopass pics, even if there weren't any characters. It took us about 15 minutes to get on again, and we got the same side again! My snowman car got to be in our picture this time.





We had grabbed another Incredicoaster FP that we were pretty excited about (I think it must have been a cancellation) and we headed over to use it. Along the way, we got this accidentally awkward picture of my sister pointing at Goofy's bum when he leaned over...



We found another Photopass photographer as we headed across the bridge (the lights were so beautiful!). (Also, I love that little snowglobe!)




Sadly, as we approached the Incredicoaster, we realized it was closed! This was at about 7:15 PM, and with an 8 PM closing, I was pretty sure we weren't going to get to ride again! (I was right) We decided to wait and see if it came back up, and rode the Silly Symphony Swings in the meantime. That was a lot of fun! Those are definitely better at night, too. We considered riding Goofy's Sky School, but it was 7:35, we weren't sure that we could be on and off and still make it to Guardians before closing, which we had decided to use our Multiple Experience Pass on. We watched a little bit of the Elena? celebration, then headed BACK over to Hollywoodland. Seriously, we ran back and forth between there and the Pier so. many. times. We also saw "Santa" for the only time that trip. Haha.


Our last ride on Guardians wasn't quite as good as some of the others, but it was still a fun way to close out CA. We were in line about 15 minutes again, which put us off a few minutes after 8. Our last picture you couldn't really see us, so I didn't bother uploading it. We were kind of sad that we never went on Monsters, Inc., but it will (probably) still be there later, and we were enjoying our 4 trips on Guardians for the day... :) We did walk over that direction so my sister could see that part of the park, since we hadn't been over there. With CA closed, it was time to hop back over to Disneyland to see what else we could accomplish that day! (Even if we were feeling a little old and tired. :) )


 

Jaina

Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
Joined
Jul 22, 2005
It was so magical walking back into Disneyland at night, with everything fully lit. My sister was blown away at how beautiful IASW was! We had a Maxpass for the Matterhorn. It's not my favorite (it's just so rough, and the yeti startles/scares me way too much!) but my sister really liked it when she came a couple years ago. So we did that one, and I graciously let her sit in the very front (my least favorite place, because of the Harold Jr, or Harold-on-Steroids, or whatever his name is) and she got a little more splashed than she expected. It really is a different ride in the dark, and one this particular night, it was quite beautiful, with the lagoon, the castle, and IASW all lit up. :) It was a fun, if chilly ride, and only took us 5-6 minutes to get on!





It was 8:45, and we got a MP for Big Thunder a little later, and headed over towards Splash Mountain because our MP for that was ready about 9 PM. Sadly, it was down. :P But we ended up with another MEP, and my sister went to buy some beignets while I got us a spot to watch the projections and the fireworks by the Rivers of America. Wow. It was so uncrowded. Like very few people. I know it's not the same experience as watching it from the Hub or even Main Street, but it was worth it to not have a crush of people and still get to enjoy a neat show. If my kids and I ever make it that late, we will be watching fireworks from RoA... It was really great, and we could even sit during it. We could have stood at the waterfront and not had anyone in front of us (there wasn't anyone when it started) but we actually kind of enjoyed the silhouette they created. :) We were wishing we had gotten regular beignets though. I didn't enjoy the peppermint as much as the regular. My daughter and I got the mini ones at RB JK Express in Downtown Disney a few months earlier and they were much better.



As fireworks finished we noticed that Splash was open again, and it said a 10 minute wait. Pssh. Only if it meant it might take that long to walk all the way through the line. Between it being a winter evening and it being recently closed, it was completely walk on. Even with our ponchos though, I was feeling nervous. Somehow the party in front of us sent us ahead of them, and I again graciously gave my sister the front seat in the log... I was tucking my poncho like crazy, trying to cover every avenue, but I still got a portion of one leg pretty darn wet. Thankfully my shoes stayed dry, since I hadn't taken the time to change into my flip flops. (And because I didn't want to lug my tennis shoes around). Anyway, my sister got a face FULL of water on one or two of the smaller drops. "What can I say, except you're welcome?" Hahaha. We had a fun ride, but didn't feel like pushing our luck on a second ride even though there was no line.


Now is when the craziness began. When we got off Splash it was 9:57 PM. The park closed at 11 PM. We walked with purpose over to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad to use our MP for it, and somehow we rode it twice in 20 minutes. I'm not sure if we had 2 Multiple Experience Passes, or if the line was pretty reasonable. I'm kind of thinking the MEP. I wish I would have documented. I just have pictures at 10:08 and at 10:26 that I took when we got on. Then we had to decide if we wanted to use our last MEP on Indiana Jones or go do a couple Fantasyland rides before using on the Matterhorn again. I pushed for Fantasyland, because I love it at night, and IJ is ever-so-slightly creepy at night (same with pirate for some reason). So we genuinely jogged all the way from BTMR over to Fantasyland, and were on the Carousel by 10:34 (one of my favorites, and we ran up just as it was cycling in!), on the teacups by 10:43 (I think we had to wait like half a cycle for those), and on the Matterhorn with our MEP by 10:54. We were hooooping we could ride it, get off, and run into Alice's line before 11 PM, but we didn't really think it would happen. But WE MADE IT! We got in line at 10:59, and it took us all of 12 minutes to get through the line and the ride. That line had been like 30 minutes plus all day, so we hadn't attempted it. I was so glad that we did, and it was such a rush hitting 5 rides in the last hour of the day!

(haha, love this picture! We were so tired but hyped up!)





And then I got to do something I've never done before.
We stayed. We didn't have any kids to get home, we didn't have to be anywhere early the next morning, it wasn't -too- cold and we weren't completely wiped out just yet. Seriously, my sister kind of dragged me all over the parks all day. That was unexpected, and fun. My DH would have been wiped out by closing after chasing me around all day... We stayed in the park for over an hour after it closed. We shopped a little, but mostly we enjoyed the beautiful lights and decorations, and we loved seeing it all without the busy-ness of the crowd, and had fun taking a bunch of pictures. It was magical. I was sad to not have a DSLR with me in such an empty park, but my iphone got some shots to remember it at least.










And THIS couple was living the life. The just laid down together on Main St. about 10 minutes to midnight and were soaking it all in. I actually asked them if I could take some pictures for them with their phone, because I would want pictures to remember a moment like that. Then when I was further away I grabbed one so I could remember it too. So lovely, all of it.



We exited an hour and 10 minutes after official closing, and it's always a little hard to say "goodbye." Even when I already had another trip pretty planned for May. But coming back with 5 kids in tow isn't nearly the same as enjoying it for myself, and at Christmastime.



But my were we tired! No lines for the tram was a plus, but that chilly wind on the way back to the (empty) parking garage kept us awake, haha. I was annoyed when I realized my fitbit started its count over at midnight, because we still did some walking after that. But still, new record for sure!





Definitely a trip for the books! Especially when we got back to the Budget Inn or whatever (It's late and I'm too lazy to look it up if it's something else) and our keys didn't work! We had to go knock on the window and wake up the owner? at 12:45-ish so he could tell us that the card that said it went through did not actually, and we still needed to pay. That was a little exciting... It all worked out though, and we did get into our room. And slept! The drive home was long, but nothing untoward happened, and it actually seemed so much shorter riding together and chatting for much of it.

I love my sister, and I loved our trip. It's not something I ever thought would happen, but it was sure fun, and I'm so glad we did it and made it work out!
 

theluckyrabbit

Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Jul 23, 2012
How fun! Closing out the park is one of our favorite things to do, especially during the holidays! Everything is just so much more magical when the crowds have gone! So glad you and your sister got to experience that together. :)
 
  • Jaina

    Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
    Joined
    Jul 22, 2005
    How fun! Closing out the park is one of our favorite things to do, especially during the holidays! Everything is just so much more magical when the crowds have gone! So glad you and your sister got to experience that together. :)
    Thanks! It was so great! I'm gearing up mentally for a very different (and much more expensive, but magical in its own way) trip with my family the end of April!
     

    Jaina

    Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
    Joined
    Jul 22, 2005
    My sister was interested in a breakdown of our trip, so I made this fun little list. I like it, and I think I'll make it for future trips!

    Monday, Nov 26th, 2018 - 2 Adults - Park Hoppers with MaxPass - 26 Attractions - 35,000 steps - 15-16 hours

    7:32 AM Entered Parking Garage
    7:42 AM Parked
    CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE
    8ish AM At the gate
    *9:11 AM Soarin
    *9:27 AM Toy Story Midway Mania
    *9:50 AM Incredicoaster
    *10:32 AM Guardians of the Galaxy
    *10:57 AM Guardians of the Galaxy
    *11:22 AM Incredicoaster
    *11:49 AM Ariel's Undersea Adventure
    DISNEYLAND
    *12:25 PM Disneyland Railroad full circle
    *1:04 PM Roger Rabbit's Cartoon Spin
    *2:04 PM Pirates of the Caribbean
    *3:00 PM Space Mountain
    *3:22 PM It's a Small World Holiday
    3:52 PM Sleeping Beauty Castle Walk-through
    4:21 PM Seated for 4:30 Reservation at Cafe Orleans
    4:45 PM Finished with Meal
    CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE
    *5:16 PM Mater's Jingle Jamboree
    *5:45 PM Luigi's Joy to the Whirl
    *6:14 PM Radiator Springs Racers
    *6:57 PM Guardians of the Galaxy
    *7:29 PM Silly Symphony Swings
    *7:59 PM Guardians of the Galaxy
    8:00 PM California Adventure Closed
    DISNEYLAND
    *8:37 PM Matterhorn
    9:30 PM Beignets, Fireworks at Rivers of America
    *9:55 PM Splash Mountain
    *10:08 PM Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    *10:26 PM Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    *10:34 PM King Arthur Carrousel
    *10:42 PM Mad Tea Party
    *10:55 PM Matterhorn
    11:00 PM Disneyland closed
    *11:08 PM Alice in Wonderland
    12:08 AM Exited the Park
     

    DLfan4

    Cant wait for another trip to DLR
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2013
    Wow. I didn't know you could stay in the park after official closing. What a great time to take pictures. Your pictures are great.
     
  • RedHotMama

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 5, 2016
    I love it!!! I haven't really been on the boards since fall, so I just found your trip report. It looks like it was a perfect day! I'm so happy for you and your sister!!
     

    momtohms

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 16, 2012
    What an AWESOME trip! You guys look like you had an absolute blast! I love the matching shirts and ears :) Is the lady sitting in front of you guys in the Space Mountain pic wearing the same shirt as you guys? Haha! That’s a funny coincidence!

    And way to go on getting all of those rides in! DH and I went kid free in 2016 for a long weekend trip, and our first day we did as much as we could, walked TONS and went from open to close. So fun, but SO tiring. Haha! I’m planning to do another day like that on my solo trip this summer. It might not be as fun alone, but we’ll see!

    Off to watch the video you posted, but had to leave a comment first ;)
     

    Jaina

    Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
    Joined
    Jul 22, 2005
    I love it!!! I haven't really been on the boards since fall, so I just found your trip report. It looks like it was a perfect day! I'm so happy for you and your sister!!
    Thanks! And I'm glad you enjoyed it! It really was an amazing day! My sister rekindled her love for Disneyland, too, I think. :)

    What an AWESOME trip! You guys look like you had an absolute blast! I love the matching shirts and ears :) Is the lady sitting in front of you guys in the Space Mountain pic wearing the same shirt as you guys? Haha! That’s a funny coincidence!

    And way to go on getting all of those rides in! DH and I went kid free in 2016 for a long weekend trip, and our first day we did as much as we could, walked TONS and went from open to close. So fun, but SO tiring. Haha! I’m planning to do another day like that on my solo trip this summer. It might not be as fun alone, but we’ll see!

    Off to watch the video you posted, but had to leave a comment first ;)
    Yes! She did, which was hilarious! They were $5 shirts from Wal-mart, so I thought we would see them a lot, but that was the only one we saw, and she happened to be in our Space Mountain car! And yes, it was a very tiring day! I know we'll have to take it a lot easier on our trip next week, both since we have 5 kids to keep track of and try to herd, and also because we have 3 days to get it all in, and we don't want to wear ourselves out. But when we're paying nearly $200 for a one-day ticket, we are -going- to get our money's worth, haha! And we can recover the next day. :)
     

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