Last spring, Loo-loo started asking to go to Disneyland. We were surprised, because she has never asked to go on a vacation before. We would go on family trips when she was little, but as she got older it became harder and harder to deal with her short window of patience. Just a half hour car ride is hard for her- she is the queen of "are we there yet?"
It took us a while to make a plan that would work for everyone- we wanted it to be a family trip, but it just didn't work out, so my mom and I finally decided to take her in the fall, so it wasn't so hot and busy, and so that we could just focus on her- it was her trip, after all.
Loo-loo hadn't been to Disneyland since she was 2, so she really didn't have any memories, just what she sees in movies, t.v., and what her friends tell her. She was convinced that when we arrived in California, that Mickey and Minnie would be waiting for us with a sign that said "Lindsay" Haha! High expectations, that one. Also, she had never flown before.
I was convinced that she would be able to handle the plane and the trip very well. She is always so well behaved when I have her- I have forgotten that it's taken a lot of practice and hard work on my mom's behalf to get to her well behaved state. I haven't seen her ill behaved side for so many years, I forgot what it's like to wrangle her in public. Besides the fact that now she is a fully grown adult- with the temper and patience of a 2 year old, (at her worst) needless to say, it was hard on all of us. I realized on this trip that I baby the hell out of her- I need to step up and treat her like the respectable adult that she is.
The plane ride was okay- she rocked in her seat to keep calm and we had her ipod so she could listen to music- but she just didn't have any patience. When she gets frustrated, she says things like "Whats going on here?" "We're LOST!" and "Fine! Just forget it!" followed by punching, scratching, stomping. They switched our plane to a smaller one- so it was really hard for her to get in and out of the seat and up and down the aisles. We had to wait for almost an hour for our shuttle to our hotel, then the shuttle took an hour and a half to get to the hotel. She finally fell asleep on my mom's shoulder in the shuttle.
Well rested, we went to check out the pool- Loo-loo really wanted to swim. But it was outside, and kinda cold. She thought that a hotel that fancy should have an indoor pool as well.
We got our tickets and walked in the gate- and it started to rain. Sheets of water, pouring from the sky. We had brought ponchos- so we ducked into the nearest dry spot and unwillingly pulled them on. We had really hoped to not see rain that quickly in the day- we were disappointed, Loo-loo was beyond frustrated, and we had just gotten there. It was going to be a long day.
Loo-loo may have retreated to some bad behavior, but it was only because she was soooo excited, it was her dream come true. And because she was frustrated with the rain- we all were. Seeing her that excited to be at Disneyland was neat- it took me back to when I was little and saw the magic at Disneyland. So even though I had a plastic hood scrunched over my face for a good part of the day, I still saw magic in that castle, and a little hope that I actually might pull the sword from the stone.
We went to the Tiki Room first, then to Pirates, then we ran for the next nearest indoor ride- the Haunted Mansion. Nightmare Before Christmas style. We knew Loo-loo would hate it, but we had to get out of the rain.
To get on the ride you have to get on a moving walkway- with Loo-loo's depth perception problems, it was not fun. I had to pick her up and put her in the ride. And with the speaker in the back of the car- it kept freaking her out- so I had to cover her mouth to keep her screams in. People were looking at us like we were torturing her.
Do you see that my pants are soaked right up to my knees? And Loo-loo loves splashing in puddles- so every other step our shoes got a bath. Thankfully, the rain stopped at this point. Disneyland workers were out sweeping water away from the paths- no more puddles.
Actually, right after we pulled on our ponchos, we saw Goofy and Donald- Loo-loo ran, full speed, arms out, screaming "Donald! Donald!" It scared the dude so bad that he ran to Goofy for safety, and wouldn't look at her. We had to tell her not to scare them- or they would kick us out.
Mickey was so cute with her. Poor Loo-loo and her soaking wet hair! But look just how happy she is, to get to meet Mickey Mouse!
In Toontown the sun actually came out for like 10 minutes. We got some water and took a break at a table.
On the Smallworld ride, we learned that Loo-loo does not like boats. But she did enjoy singing "It's a small world after all" for the whole ride.
Tinkerbell was so nice! She asked Loo-loo for a hug, after we told Loo-loo not to hug the characters anymore, she was squeezing them so tightly. But she gave her a nice hug.
We ventured towards Tomorrowland, when it began to pour again. We went on the Buzz Lightyear ride- then we were done. We wanted to get some shopping in before we got kicked out. (They closed the park at 6- for the Halloween party)
We loved all the Halloween decorations- they had lots of neat carved pumpkins- but the rain didn't allow me any good shots.
Our ponchos were grey- my mom kept saying how she felt like she looked like a Dementor. And since I just read Harry Potter 3, I now know what she meant.
We ordered Buca di Beppo for dinner- so delicious and it really hit the spot for all of us, especially the chocolate cake. (That we mostly ate for breakfast the next morning.)
On the plane ride home- a bigger plane. And they gave us almost front row seats- so the ride home was much calmer and less stressful than the on the way there.
All in all, Loo-loo had the wonderful Disneyland vacation that she had been begging for all summer. And we are so happy that we got to give it to her- her memories will last a lifetime. Next time, we won't go in the rain. But the next time won't be for awhile- it took so much out of us, especially Loo-loo. I think we'll stick to what we know works and what she loves here, at home.