Margarit and I just returned from a trip to Disneyland with our girls. This was the first opportunity for me to take any time off work in three years. We booked it over the Family Day Long Weekend, so I only had to miss four days of work. We pulled Hailey out of grade 3 and Annelise from Kindergarten for the four days in order to make it happen. This gave us eight days down in the Magic Kingdom. The girls loved it... so it was time and money well spent!!! We left Edmonton very early on Saturday morning and flew to Anaheim by way of Seattle.
We arrived in California in the early afternoon. We decided not to bother using up one of our Disneyland day passes on the first day. It was tough to keep the kids busy that first afternoon, with Disneyland right across the street from our hotel. The next morning we got up bright and early, had breakfast, and headed over to the Magic Kingdom. We got rained on the first afternoon we were there, but after that the weather was pretty good. When we left Edmonton it was -30C. The entire time we were in California it was a mix of sun and clouds, with only a couple showers, and temperatures between 53F and 63F. We were quite happy to see flowers blooming, green grass and palm trees in February!!! We had a five day pass to Disneyland and were here for the kids to have fun...
We soon learned that Disneyland was all about standing in line. We stood in line to get into the park through the security check, and then again to get our passes scanned. After that it was all about standing in line agian... to see any of the characters, to buy food, or to go on a ride. The kids didn't seem to mind... but it got pretty tiring for the adults.
I was really surprised at how FAT americans have become. By my casual census, approximately 40% of Americans are noticeably overweight. Of those, approximately 10% would be considered obese. It's no wonder given the food that they eat. We had the pleasure [???] of living on restaurant meals for the entire time that we were there. We soon learned that we could not handle more than two meals per day and even at that we could not finish the portions that were served to us. It's very sad to see young children with multiple chins and numerous spare tires. This does not bode well for the next generation. It made us thankful that our kids, despite their poor eating habits, are slim and active. This wake up call will help us to maintain that.
The latest craze at Disneyland is Pin Trading. We were encouraged to buy lanyards and collect souvenir pins. These are available for sale at prices ranging from about $6 to $12 each. After spending enough money in one of the stores you are able to purchase a starter kit with a few pins, or a $1 mystery pin. Once started you are encouraged to trade with resort staff. Our girls each came home with around 25 pins. Do the math... although this is fun, it is not free!!!
We also made a couple of side trips. We took a day trip down to San Diego to visit SeaWorld. And then, we rented a car for a day and took at trip over to the beach. This was the first time for all three of our girls to experience the ocean. More information and some pictures of these side trips will be included in seperate posts.
When we arrived home it was around 1:00PM in the afternoon. It was -12C, with the forecast for the upcoming week calling for daytime highs around -20C. There was fresh snow and the wind was brisk. A real wake up call from what we left behind in California. We had to get the girls up at 2:00AM to get packed up and ready. We caught a shuttle to the airport at 3:05AM. Then we sat around and waited some more to finally board our flight at 6:10AM. After a brief layover in Seattle we boarded another plane for the short hop back to Edmonton. Being Canadians, we weren't really surprised by the weather but it was a bit of a shock to the system. It felt good to finally get home by around 1:00 in the afternoon. We will spend the rest of the day relaxing, doing laundry, unpacking, and getting ready to return to the routine.