Traveling Circus- First Trip to Disneyland

Discussion in 'Disneyland Trip Reports' started by samheatherwhite, Jun 24, 2018.

  1. RedHotMama

    RedHotMama Mouseketeer

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    I've been looking into the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail. I think we'll spend a lot of time there, too, in September.
    I'm glad you stayed for the parade! So pretty!
     
  2. samheatherwhite

    samheatherwhite Mouseketeer

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    This day was designated as a rest day. We had plans for a character brunch and then spend some time at the pool.
    I'd love to say that we slept in but we didn't really. The kids were too excited to sleep.
    Our original plans from waaaay back when planning began was to go to Ariel's Grotto for the little girls to see some princesses. Since it closed down I added a Surf's up Breakfast as a replacement fun activity. G was especially thrilled because she missed out on Stitch when we had gone to Disneyworld. She and I were in the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique when her Grandad and baby bro accidentally ran into Stitch and got good photo pass pics and everything. She was super jealous in a funny joking type way so I was really happy to get her a meet up with one of our families favorite characters.

    I made our reservation at about 9am. We left our hotel and headed to Paradise Pier hotel at around 8:15. I guarantee that our hotel had a shorter walks to the park than this one had. When we got there the check in area was a hot mess. Kids everywhere, running around, badly behaved chaos! I was afraid that this did not bode well for a nice meal but luckily that was not the case. We were called very quickly and soon getting our picture made with Mickey.
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    Our waitress was really nice and we soon had drinks and were able to go get some yummy food. We were seated in the front room near the buffet and it really seemed like a small restaurant. It was easy to see the characters walking around so we could kind of tell when we should wait so we didn't miss them.
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    Here is G with her plate. It was too busy fro me to go get buffet pics. She got some bacon and sausage, breakfast potatoes, scrambled eggs, a mickey waffle and a mickey pancake, and a cinnamon roll and a cherry danish. Everything was good if pretty basic. She said she loved the mini cinnamon roll and the cherry danish which both tasted fresh. Her second trip included some fresh fruit and another danish. I believe cream cheese the second time.
    Funny story, you can also see G's apple juice which came with a funny straw. All the kid's had fun straws as did I. My sister was definitely why I was cool enough to get a fun straw and she was not.
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    B got a mickey waffle, 2 kinds of mini muffin, a biscuit, some eggs, a bunch of fruit, and bacon. He was very pleased with his food as well. He got seconds on fruit and bacon.
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    I got some banana french toast, a mickey waffle, a chicken nugget, an eggs benedict, breakfast potatoes, bacon, some chiliquiles, some cantelope, and a cream cheese danish.
    I really liked the french toast especially with the syrup that was better than regular syrup..which was also available. The waffles were hot and fresh. I got teh chicken to see if there was anything special about it since it seemed odd to me to have nuggets at breakfast. Nope a plain chicken nugget. I was not a fan of the eggs benedict. It did not seem as fresh, the ham was really tough like it had been sitting under the heat lamp too long. The chiliquiles were unique and very tasty. Uncle J loved those and got a second plate with just them. I love a nice cream cheese danish and this was delicious. Very soft and nice.
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    Daisy was our first visitor. Our character interaction here was not the best but it could definitely be because little B was really grumpy. The characters weren't unfriendly or anything but Daisy didn't hang around long either.
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    Grouchy girl would not let me get a pic.
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    Little C loved all the fruit options and had a really nice time at brunch.
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    Minnie is always so cute.
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    My guys love Stitch. We were so excited to see him. We had been showing the little girls a ton of Disney movies before we left so they would be familiar with as many characters as possible. They loved Lilo and Stitch too.
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    I love Stitch, he is a tiny little guy!
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    He made a big deal about our matching Stitch shirts.
    They also have a character dance party during breakfast. Little C and my B joined in and had fun.
    After breakfast we took some fun pics in the lobby of the hotel and headed back.
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    You can see in this pic that B had bought a Buzz Lightyear bubble machine the day before after having so much fun with the bubbles with the cousins. The chased and popped bubbles all the way back to the hotel.
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    We really enjoyed this meal. I would definitely do it again. The characters were fun, especially Stitch who really played it up with my kids when he realized how pleased they were to see him. He danced with B during the dance party for a long time. The food wasn't boring or overly exciting. Something for everyone and the quality was as good or better than what one would expect from a big buffet.
     
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  4. Jaina

    Jaina Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.

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    So much fun! Stitch is one of my favorites, but I've never met him. :)
     
  5. samheatherwhite

    samheatherwhite Mouseketeer

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    Stitch is so much fun and really very tiny. I'm about 5'6 and was easily taller.
     
  6. samheatherwhite

    samheatherwhite Mouseketeer

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    As you can see in the picture above it was pretty chilly that morning. We were hoping it would warm up for some pool time later.
    After a delicious brunch we headed back through downtown disney and shopped a little on the way back to the hotel. The little girls were going to get in a good nap.

    It was still pretty chilly but my guys decided that they just had to use the pool/waterpark again.
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    It was too cold for me so I just pulled up a lounger and watched them play. They said it was warm enough and played for a really long time. We had the area mostly to ourselves. It was really nice.
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    After a while the kids got hungry so we went back upstairs for a snack and just hung around the room. After a while the little girls finally woke up and wanted to go swim. My kids were pleased by the idea of going again so we did.

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    It was still a bit cool but much warmer so the pool was more crowded. My kids were pleased to hang out with the cousins in the little pool.
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    Little B loved it and played for a long time.
    Little C is apparently not a pool kid so she hung out with me.
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    When everyone was done we went upstairs for showers and to get ready for dinner.
    C and I enjoy checking out all things Disney so I suggested the quick service place at the Grand Californian since we had seen all of the other hotels and I had heard good things about the food here.

    It was a quick walk and the hotel is really beautiful.
    I had seen the nachos on the disboards and they looked really good so G and I got those to share. B wanted a grilled cheese.
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    These nachos were huge, that pic is after we had been eating for a while. There is a ton of food there. After so much swimming B was starving, he ate his whole grilled cheese and french fries and decided that he wanted some just cheese nachos too. He ate most of those! C and J got nachos as well and the little guys got a grilled cheese and chicken strips. All of the food was prepared fresh and tasted so good. The meat on the nachos was tender and so flavorful. We would definitely eat here again and the price was also really good for such huge servings.

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    We strolled out after supper enjoying the beautiful area and headed back to dd.
     
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  7. RedHotMama

    RedHotMama Mouseketeer

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    Very cool that you guys got to play in an almost-empty pool area! And that lunch looks like a great value!
     
  8. samheatherwhite

    samheatherwhite Mouseketeer

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    On the way back to the room we stopped at Jazz Kitchen and get some beignets. They were delicious. Soft and doughy and warm with tons of super messy powdered sugar.
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    Even miss Picky really liked these.
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    There was some live music playing and the little girls stopped to have a dance party of their own.
    We rested up and went to bed early in preparation for another day in California Adventure.

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    The next morning we split up. I was taking my kids to ride soaring at rope drop and the littles wanted to go to Carsland.
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    The let us in the park quite early and all the way into the actual que for Soaring. It was a little chilly again this morning. We were glad for the sweatshirts.
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    None of us had ever ridden this ride before. We had almost ridden it in Florida when we were there when G was 5 but the fast pass line we were in was long and we had a meal reservation so we had to get out of line. I was really looking forward to it though I was a bit worried that B would hate it. He wanted to go so I certainly let him.

    He loved it, once he realized that he could sit with his feet tucked under him so they wouldn't dangle. He loved announcing the different areas we were plying over. The man next to him was really kind and when he didn't know one area he leaned over and told him it was Fiji. I am glad he didn't seem to i=mind a very excited 6 year old narrating his ride.

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    Bad pic here, but next we met back up with our friends and did a few Bug rides with the littles.
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    The little girls really wanted to meet Anna and Elsa so we headed that way with a quick stop off to ride Monsters Inc. It was a cute little ride that we all liked.

    I don't know how we got so lucky but we managed to walk into the Animation Academy and get behind 2 other families to see the Frozen characters. we waited like 5 minutes.
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    We did this meet and greet in 2 groups so the little ones could have their own pics. My kids weren't overly excited for this one but I was and they humored me nicely. Little B and C loved this and it was pure joy to watch.
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    B had a nice chat and then was done. It was hard to get sweet C out of there. Friendly girl would have hung out in Arrendale all week!
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    The Princesses were super funny with my big kids. They liked Brant's avengers shirt.
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    The lighting in there is awful though. I didn't mention to anyone else that there was usually an extra meet after the princesses just in case it didn't work out. Boy were they surprised when they got to bonus meet Olaf.
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    The ice cubes to keep him cold were so cute!
     
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  9. samheatherwhite

    samheatherwhite Mouseketeer

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    AFter our visit to Arendale we decided to watch the Turtle Talk with Crush show. It was cute.
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    We were getting a bit hungry at this point and my kids were really interested in the Cozy Cone Motel area so we headed that way.
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    There were only 2 open before lunch. The churro cone and the chili cone. It seemed really odd to me to have chili available before lunch and not the ice cream or the popcorn

    We went with a churro.
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    This place was a bit of a zoo. There was only one worker in the cone to both take your order and then make it. I thought that they had different colored churros here but on this day it was just the regular one and it came with caramel sauce. We also got the pear-a-dice soda. It was really a pretty color and fun though not my very favorite taste.
    The churro was excellent and fresh and the caramel sauce was also very good.

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    We hung around in Cars land for a while and I think that we had fast passes for the racers again during this time.

    It was nearing lunch time and we soon decided to try something from the Boardwalk Pizza and pasta area.
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    G and I shared the chicken pasta. It was delicious. We ate almost all of it.
    B wanted a salad.
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    He just wanted a side salad because he wanted dessert. This was a nice little salad, nothing special but he ate every bite. I don't have pics but the little girls got spaghetti that they loved and the other adults got pizza and they said it was fine too.
    Overall we were pleased with this reataurant and would not hesitate to eat there again. We got there just before the crowds which worked out very nicely.
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    The kids had seen the yellow and blue treats from the ABominable Snowman treat stand and wanted one of those until we saw the line of at least 50 people. The then opted for a piece of the special Pixar cake.
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    This was so cute and really tasty.
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    The blue layer was vanilla, the red was red velevt, and the yellow was a lemon flavor. The icing was a nice cream cheese. It was good and we enjoyed it. I would definitely recommend sharing as that is a massive amount of rich cake. In a funny turn of events G liked the yellow, I liked the blue, and B preferred the red layer. It was all good and did not last long.

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    We took some pictures in the area while we waited for the little girls to finish lunch.

    Next on the agenda was the Disney Junior Dance Party. I think that we hit the Little Mermaid ride on the way there.
    Little B and C love Sophia and Doc McStuffins and B still enjoys the Lion Guard.
    G was a good sport.
    This was a fun show and the littles jumped and danced and really had a great time in here. It is definitely for the smaller guys but a nice break for the rest of us.
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    The 3 littler guys all loved it when stuff fell out of the sky.
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