Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Disneyland – It CAN be done with toddlers!

Day #3 in LA – Disneyland!IMG_2774Many people looked at us like we were crazy when I shared that we would be taking my 22 month old son to Disneyland. But, we did many things that made his first trip to the “happiest place on earth”, truly happy.

For starters, we bought 5-day hopper tickets so that we could spend short spurts of time at the park, and not feel like we were wasting money. (of course, another perk is that kids are free until the age of 3, get ‘em in free while you can!)

Our first day, we arrived at about 11 o’clock. These were the first 3 pictures we took:Dland - PlutoDland - fire truck Dland - main street  While Cooper was very overwhelmed, he was ECSTATIC! A second fun perk to bringing your child to Disneyland for the first time is the adorable button we received. We were told to swing by “Newsstand” just to the left of the main entrance once you enter the park. He’s sporting it on the fire truck above.

We went on the carousel for his first ride, we figured that would be a good “transition” ride, not too overwhelming. Dland - carousel Apparently he liked it, when he got off the ride, this is what happened:Dland - after 1st ride He didn’t quite understand that there were more rides to come. He didn’t want to get off the ride. Next up, we were onto Dumbo…Dland - Dumbo Dland - Dumbo2-croppedThen we went on the Storybook Land Canal Boats, the teacups, then met up with some friends for lunch. (It was a much needed break – did I mention it was in the upper 90’s?)

Following lunch, we went on Pirates of the Caribbean, YES, WITH our 22 month old! ;) Once again, many people said we were crazy for trying it, but we did a pirate theme for his birthday last year, and thought it’d be fun to give it a go. I think we ended up going on it around 4-5 times. Cooper was a bit timid, but then wanted to go on again and again! Now, he talks about it all the time. Dland - PiratesWe hit up Peter Pan where Cooper took about a 40 minute nap on Papa’s shoulder while we waited in line. Flexibility was key, and as long as Cooper was having fun, I will definitely willing to be flexible.

Next we scooted over to California Adventure to visit a water feature (again, upper 90’s, yuck!). In the “Bug’s Land”, they have a few little water areas for the kids to play in. Cooper and the boys we went with got rather wet!Dland - water feature Dland - water feature2 Dland - water feature4After, we discovered another of Cooper’s favorite rides,  Francis’ Ladybug Boogie! (similar to the teacups, but slightly less spinning, however, you can’t control it)Dland - ladybug We also went on Flik’s Flyers before getting some ice cream at Bur-r-r Bank and snapping some shots with Lightning McQueen and Mater.Dland - Cars Dland - Mater Dland - McQueen We headed back to the main park to ride the train and hit “It’s a Small World” (which my husband had NEVER been on! How does this happen?!) Of course we stopped by the “C” in California Adventure to take a picture of Cooper.Dland C Publisher Dland - Small World Scott Dland - Its a Small World You think we’re getting tired at this point? You betcha! We checked out Toon Town while some of the older kids went on Thunder Mountain and discovered a fun playground near Goofy’s house, and everything at perfect kid level! Cooper was running around in toddler heaven.Dland - Mickeys car Dland - Goofys house  We grabbed some dinner and finally left the park around 8:45 (for Cooper’s last ride of the day, the tram!). Yes, he was just as excited to ride the tram as he was to ride say, the carousel. He thought the overhead passes were “tunnels or caves”. So many adventures through the eyes of a toddler.

I’ll do a summary of all the things we did with Cooper at Disneyland at the end, however, for just Day #1, here’s what we managed to squeeze in (Disneyland’s Toddler-friendly adventures):

  • Pick up “First Time” Button
  • Carousel
  • Dumbo
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats
  • Teacups
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Peter Pan
  • Pictures with Mater and Lightning McQueen
  • Water park area – Bug’s Life
  • Flik’s Flyers
  • Disneyland Train
  • It’s A Small World
  • Playground at Toon Town
  • The tram 

See? Disneyland can be fun and successful even with a toddler!

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