the podie people: Happiest Place On Earth

Happiest Place On Earth

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

We just got back from Disneyland and I'm pretty sure our whole family feels like we have a happy and sugar hang over. We had SO MUCH FUN. Though it was exhausting it was one of our favorite trips. We just love California. Every time we've visited I always wish we could live there one day.  Now that we're back home and getting back into our routine its so nice to sleep in our own beds, eat our normal food and see our friends. Summer is just around the corner and we are more than ready.

One thing I love about Disney is how you truly feel like you're in another world. From the time you go through security and line up at the gates, there's a whole other feel to the atmosphere. People are happy and nice. Music is always playing, and you can't see anything but Disney once you're in. You completely forget that you are in the middle of Anaheim, California and feel like you've gone into another world. It's incredibly magical. 

I've tried deciding on my favorite foods and rides and I'm not sure I can. Every "land" has it's own feel and theme and makes it so special and different from the others that I don't think I could compare them. I think most people can agree though New Orleans Square has one of the best vibes and food in the park.

 A few days we were there the park was at capacity, which was totally BONKERS. The days were long and hot and it took us all day to get anything done but by the end of the week the weather and the crowds cooled off. By our last night, we were just walking straight onto rides. BUT it was super late so the kids were tired and that didn't last long. 

We took a day off in the middle of the week to just relax. We slept in and took our time and went and visited Laguna Beach and Huntington Beach. We had a rental car which I think is a must with kids. Dash napped in the car in between drives and we got to play on the beach and had dinner at Laguna where Dylan and I ate on our honeymoon last year. We had the same waitress and we remembered each other! I think it will become a tradition for our family for sure.


1. PACK A COOLER: and take it with you into the park. We went through at least 12 water bottles a day and packed the kids snacks and lunch. Don't get me wrong we still spent plenty on treats and dinner but I can't imagine doing a full day without on hand snacks and water for the kids in between rides, meals, and in lines. We bought a soft cooler and kept it in our double stroller because you can't "roll" your cooler around the park. Plus that would be a huge pain. You can also use a locker but mama ain't got time for that.  (PS water is almost $4 a bottle...)

2. GET THERE EARLY// OR STAY LATE: the best way to get onto rides with short times is be there  first thing when the park opens and head straight to fantasy land or toon town before it gets busy. The family//small rides don't have fast passes and will be extremely long lines for the kids no matter what so get those done early. One of the days we were there we went straight to toon town where all the characters live and it was basically empty. It was so perfect and we got to meet Mickey, walk onto rides and play for a little while before the crowds came. If you know anything about toon town you know it gets PACKED and you can wait to see Mickey for an hour if you're late.
**ALSO: have someone in your group take all your tickets and go get your fast passes in for your favorite rides first thing when you get into the park. Then you can make sure you get to ride them that day and then can plan your day based on your fast pass times.

STAYING LATE: if you spend the morning at home or the hotel and your kids get a good nap in, I recommend staying late in the park. The rides really free up and the park is so fun at night. Everything is lit up and the parade and fireworks are so worth it to be there late. Sometimes when you get to the park early the kids can't make it to the late night fun.

3. CHILD SWAP PASSES: for all the rides that Dash couldn't get on ( KREW is tall enough to ride everything now) we would use our fast passes for the rest of the group and I would sit with Dash and feed him a snack or let him run around a bit. The group would get a child swap pass and get off the ride and bring it to me. The pass is good for 3 so I would be able to go plus 2 other people ( usually Krew and Dylan) and depending on the ride you could walk straight up to the ride and get on (Space Mountain) or get straight back into the fast pass line which is usually really quick.

4. HOLD A SPOT FOR THE PARADE: there's not much worse than missing the parade or not having a spot and it gets so full you actually can't see it. The parade was one of the kids' favorite parts of Disney and is so special. People start holding spots hours before the parade begins so I recommend using a blanket and taking turns holding the spot. The best place is where the parade begins near "Small World" ride and toon town entrance. People get crazy and it's totally worth it to have a comfortable spot to sit and watch the parade. We took turns getting dinner and bringing it back to the spot to eat. It's also really hard to navigate around the park during this time because they shut down certain areas so unless you're in an area riding rides and skipping the parade, you should have your spot nailed down.

5. DOWNLOAD THE APP: check the Disneyland app for ride wait times, and to see how full the park is. One of the days we were there they stop letting people in at NOON because the park was at capacity. It's good to know what to expect and you can navigate your day based on how busy it is and what the wait times are for each ride.

6. FOLLOW @MAGIC_KINGDOM_MAMAS: their Instagram and blog are seriously the best ever for moms going to Disneyland. Anything and everything you need to know is on their site including, where to nurse your baby, charge your phone, what to wear, and what to bring. I just love them!

7. WATCH THE SHOWS! Shows are an awesome opportunity to take a break from running around and being in the sun all day. Our kids loved going and it was so nice to relax and sit down for a bit. If you get a pamphlet when entering the park it will tell you all the show times, parade times, fire work times, character meet ups and more. The shows are either indoors and air conditioned or in a large outdoor covered theater and are so entertaining and worth it. We watched frozen in California Adventure and it was an exact reenactment of the movie, I was SO impressed. The kids went to the brand new show in California Adventure that had Mickey and the Roadster Racers and they were jumping up and down and dancing, it was so awesome! The shows range in time but check ahead of time so you know how long you'll be sitting there.

8. BRING KIDS CHANGE OF CLOTHES : kids are just messy and it totally sucks to not have a change of clothes when they dump their whole dole whip down their shirt and you have nothing to put them in or you have to go buy a $25 tee shirt. Dash had to have two extra shirts and a new pair of shorts everyday because he either got wet, sweaty, or dirty everyday. We bought the boys matching Disney sweatshirts  the first day and kept them in the stroller during the day and they would put them on at night when it cooled off.

9. PACK SUNSCREEN + HATS: especially if you will be there more than one day you don't want sunburnt babies. It will ruin their trip and you won't want them to be outside at all the next day. We used babyganics SPF 50 all over, both boys wore hats and neither of them were sunburnt after 7 days in California. Dash would nap in the stroller and we would pull his cover over him and that also helped a lot too.

10. GO WITH THE FLOW : you can have your entire day planned out and try to do everything in one day but its just NOT possible. We were there 5 days and couldn't get everything done between the 2 parks. One of the best parts of Disneyland is just being there, so enjoy it and just relax. Your kids will cry and throw fits and there will be moments where you feel so stressed but it is all so worth it. Know your kids' limits and don't stretch them too thin or it will not be a fun experience for either of you. We would have plans and sometimes they just didn't work out and thats totally OK!

I hope some of these tips help and that you get the chance to experience the Disney magic!