Road Trip 2013: Day 8, September 6, 2013

(click here for today's pictures)
A true California Adventure!

Oh the morning seems so long ago as I type this. This morning the parks opened at 9 so we woke at 7 to be ready to eat breakfast by 7:45. Tomorrow will be the same times but we will throw in packing up and loading up the van before breakfast just to spice things up. The boys were up as soon as we were but the girls were a bit slower to wake (as usual). Pops and Nonna took the big 4 to breakfast and the rest of us were soon on our way over there.

I spent most of my morning doing Reagan's hair. She has become quite the mess lately-wonder if she could be spoiled? She has
decided that she wants Campbell's purple hat instead of the pink one that is hers. Sweet Campbell usually lets her have it-Campbell can be loud and talks constantly-but she has a huge heart. Remember Keaton took over her Christmas baby doll and now Reagan has taken over her hat. Anyway, Reagan was upset while I was doing her hair because she didn't have the hat she wanted. So of course her hair never looked right in the other hat and I had to do it at least 4 times. I just smiled since we are across the street from the happiest place on earth but I really wanted to smack that hat off of her head! It is probably a bit tough being the oldest sometimes since we probably expect quite a bit from her.

Breakfast was very crowded this morning. We were barely able to find seats and no I did not have sausage, eggs or bacon but opted for a blander bagel and cream cheese. I was about to say that when we return home I will need to start eating healthier but after a day at a theme park I feel pretty confident in how I look. Seriously, I could set on a bench and watch people all day long.  

Now today was interesting at the parks since it was Dapper Days. We didn't know why there were so many folks in dressy vintage clothing everywhere you looked but later found out more. Apparently, they have these days every once in a while and people dress up. It reminded me of the 20s and was neat to see. But since it was crazy hot again today, probably wearing heels, full makeup, fancy hair, pantyhose or a top coat was probably not the thing to do.

After breakfast, we walked right to California Adventure and waited at the front of the rope drop. Robby found a line to wait in for fast passes and the rest of us headed to Cars Land when the park opened. Let me tell you, that area is the cutest ever. I really do like the Cars movie and all that route 66 stuff so this was really neat. The kids couldn't have been more excited to see it all.

We rode a Mater ride first and then walked to a tire/bumper car ride. I sat out with Whitman on this one and enjoyed watching everyone try to move their tire. Robby returned with his fast passes just as the others were finishing and he went on it again with them. After that we stopped to take our picture with Mater and walked back to the other side of the park.

The next ride was Soarin'. We took turns riding it so everyone could go once even though everyone but Campbell has been on it. She didn't really know what to expect but I think she enjoyed it. Now when the fireworks popped at the end of the movie, she quickly decided that maybe this wasn't for her. Campbell was the only one that rode with Robby and me and she was such a big girl while waiting in line. You would have thought she was 6 and not 3.

After Soaring' was the rapid ride for everyone but Keaton, Whitman, me and Nonna. Keaton and I watched diligently waiting for the others to come down the hill. It took forever but we eventually saw them splash by us. Robby said that Campbell is exactly 42 inches so it took forever for them to measure her and she was measured by 3 different people on her way up to the ride. I think that Reagan had the most fun on that ride because she kept talking about how wet she got.

Then it was back to Radiator Springs for the new Lightening McQueen ride. It was really, really good-in my mind it showcases a true "Disney" ride-lots of theming, a familiar story and a bit of thrill. The boys went first and I could tell they had a good time when they got off. Robby took a picture on his phone of the picture that the ride takes and you could see the delight on their faces.

Next up was the girls turn. We also had fun and Reagan was so excited that we were in the car that won the race. Now on our picture, my hair and Nonna's hair is flapping in the wind and Campbell has a pretty terrified look on her face but I think she really enjoyed that ride anyway.

That ride was so good that Robby pulled out a fast pass that had been given to him by folks on the rapid rides. The folks worked at Disney and had a pass to hand out. Robby said that they enjoyed the kids so they pulled out that pass. We decided to use it then so the big 4 could ride the Lightening ride again. Nonna and Pops set this one out and had a drink and a snack while waiting on us.

This time during the ride, we were all in one car. When our car won the race again, Anderson grabbed his hat off of his head waving it around and pumping his fists. He was so excited about winning. We could have gone on it again too-that is how good of a ride it is. Then the others headed to the bakery for a free slice of bread while I found an ornament for the tree.

When we all met up at the bakery, we soon departed each other again. Robby took the big 3 to ride the rapids again since he had a fast pass and everyone else went to find lunch. We found a table and Keaton and Campbell helped themselves to Robby's candy stash while waiting. Nonna and Pops went to get food and they were gone forever! I was about to send out the troops looking for them but they emerged just as Robby and the others came back.

We all had lunch-Nonna and Pops had a sandwich and we had Mexican. Tamales for Robby and I and chicken and cheese wraps for the kids. They were all pretty hungry but the hit of their plates was the applesauce. It was getting hot by now but we pressed on after lunch and walked across the boardwalk area to the other side of the park.

Buzz' line was too long so we rode on the swinging ferris wheel. Nonna and Pops skipped out on that line and sat on a bench and watched. All 8 of us squeezed in the ferris wheel and had a blast. This is my favorite ride just because of its novelty. It is pretty fun and I wish that we had a video of Keaton and Anderson as we took off for our first bit of swinging. Even Whitman's arms popped up and then he held on tightly to my fingers.

After the ferris wheel, Robby offered us to do the carousel but I told him no. It was hot-almost pass out hot-and I knew that we still had a ways to go back to the room. We traced our steps and rode on the Little Mermaid ride before walking to the room. Keaton and Campbell loved this ride-dancing, music, fish-what more could you ask for. Well, maybe fried fish!

Back in the room, the kids had a bit of down time while Robby and I went to the car to start repacking it. Our main priority this afternoon was laundry and we were able to accomplish that. Then the big kids went downstairs to swim with Pops. Robby was already there waiting on the laundry and doing some work. I eventually came down with Keaton and even got in the pool myself. Even though I was crazy hot during the day, the pool was still cold to me. Maybe I am getting "thin blood" already-I sure hope not. Not ready to get much older (or pick any more grey hairs out of my head) My folks were telling me today that they were old and that Disney proved it. Hopefully, for all of us, the next few days can be a bit more relaxing. I am sure that traveling in the car with 6 kids for a few hours will be calming.

After swimming, laundry, getting ready again, and our picnic supper, it was birthday time. Tonight we celebrated Reagan's 8th birthday a few days early. We wanted to be able to celebrate with Nonna and Pops. Though we will celebrate on her real birthday too on the trip and then later with a real birthday party. We had cupcakes, candles, a banner and even a birthday hat. Nonna had a little present for her-a mickey necklace made out of her birthstone.  

We got a button for Reagan at City Hall the other day that said it was her birthday. The nice lady wrote her name on it so Reagan has been wished Happy Birthday at least 50 times-by her count. And all of these wishes have stuck with Graham. He wants to wear her button and after we sang Happy Birthday to Reagan today, he said "I think that you look bigger already."

It wasn't too much longer before the sun was down and we headed back across the street to the park. Now, yesterday the homeless man was there and even this morning he was there. The kids were so upset that I didn't have the bag for him so this afternoon, I made sure that I brought one upstairs. And sure enough that little man wasn't back to this afternoon or tonight. Robby said he probably only works weekends and I think Robby was doubting the man's true need.

Our plan tonight was to go to Disneyland and leave the California Adventure leftovers for the morning. But you would not believe the line to get into Disneyland so we quickly changed plans. Our plan changing worked last night so we would gamble that it would work tonight and it did.  We walked across to California Adventure and walked right in.  

We rode the Monster's Inc ride and walked through a big concert like deal with lots of music. Graham and Campbell could not stop dancing and had a great time. Then it was on to the Bug's Life area. The had a spiny ride and then the bumper cars. I have never been able to do this ride and usually Robby has had to ride it 2 or 3 times in a row so each of the kids could get on. But tonight, Nonna, Pops and Robby each rode with a kid and Reagan was old enough to ride alone. That left me with Keaton who really enjoyed watching the cars bump.

Then it was on to the caterpillar ride followed by spinning lady bugs. We had pretty much completed that side of the park and so we went back across the street to Disneyland. We didn't do as well there but were able to ride the submarine ride.

Robby stayed back with Whitman who was sleeping and when we climbed off of the submarine and found Robby, Campbell said "you should have come with us, a shark ate us." I don't remember getting eaten by a shark in there but I do remember the kids jumping back when a shark popped up and Keaton loving it until the pretend explosion and then she put her hands on her ears and fell asleep.

The kids really wanted to do another ride before we left but alas the lines were too long and we couldn't get to Toontown because of the upcoming fireworks. So we did the next best thing-found icees and watched the fireworks from ours spot-Reagan, Anderson and Graham just sat in the middle of the walkway and watched. Keaton wasn't too pleased with the fireworks nor was Graham. Neither one of them like loud noises. But we were all pretty excited to see Tinkerbell and then Dumbo playing through the sky. It only we had been on the front side of the castle but our spot was probably better since no one was really around us. And watching the fireworks through the trees, brought back memories of watching fireworks at riverfest on the nlr side. We started going there when the trees were tiny but eventually they blocked out view from the fireworks.

After the fireworks, we shuffled down Main Street with everyone else leaving the park and Robby found me a treat-a churro. Actually, we had 3 but it takes that many to give all of us a bite. Then we took a Flat Stanley picture and even had time to trade their pins on the way out of the park. I hope my last few paragraphs make sense-I am exhausted and am having to type every other word a few times before I can get it right-even my fingers are tired!

Tomorrow is something or another. What ever it is I know we will have fun. Back to the parks for a bit and then depart on our ride to the National Parks.

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