Friday started off with everyone in great spirits. We once again ate in our room and then headed out for an (relatively) early start. We rode the monorail in and decided to go on Nemo's Submarine ride. It was not a hit... Megan really, really doesn't like thinking she is under the sea... Karen didn't like the loud noises (but really enjoyed the Nemo, Marlin, Dori sightings along the way). To make things up to the girls, we headed from there to a Small World and smiles abounded!!
Afterward, we took a peak at some of the wait times and headed over towards Splash Mountain and Pooh's ride. While Carl, Tina, and I "enjoyed" the thrill of Splash Mountain, Papa once more came to the rescue and bought the girls twirling Minnie Mouse dolls (which the girls call their Minnie fans).
We split up at this point. Papa stayed with a sleeping Lauren; Carl, his Mom, my Mom, and Tina got back in line for Splash Mountain; I took Karen and Megan on the Pooh ride. They enjoyed floating through Pooh's dream. Megan kept asking to ride the train, so while we were waiting to join back up with everyone we headed back towards Frontier land and the French Quarter/Orleans Square. Everyone joined us except Cotton who stayed with a still sleeping Lauren and we caught the train. The girls enjoyed the ride, except the trek past the dinosaurs... maybe when they are a year or two older they'll enjoy that!
We headed for lunch at the the Golden Horseshoe Review and enjoyed the show. The girls had a great time and loved the fiddles!
After lunch we headed for the Tiki Room and listened to the talking birds. That was interesting... All three girls enjoyed it, but at this point Megan and Lauren were starting to get tired and a little squirrely. Luckily, my arm works for Lauren to get a little "rest" time on ...
Megan perked up after going through Tarzan's Treehouse. She and Karen must have gone through it at least five times and would spend as much time as we would let them on the wooden bridge between the two trees.
We decided to head back to Main Street to stake out our spots for Mickey's Soundsational Parade. All I have to say is - why did we wait all week to do this?! We had fun as we waited... Granny and Papa continued to spoil the girls with cookies and ice cream cones (ok, I got spoiled too... it was yummy!). We attempted to get some cute family shots with the Princess Castle in the background. As you can see the girls were less than cooperative!
But the parade itself?? MAGICAL! Just look at their little faces!
Afterward we headed back over to California Adventure and spent some more time in a Bugs Life. The kids enjoyed riding on the Lady Bug and Flik's Flier one last time. It was getting close to dinner time and we knew the kids were all worn out after a long (but fun) day out. We decided to try the bread bowls on Paradise Pier - very, very good and we were lucky to hit it just before the rush!
Carl and I headed back to the hotel with the girls to pack up and get them into bed. His folks and my Mom and Tina stayed out to ride a couple more rides and do a little souvenir shopping! From the stairwell in our hotel you could just see Disneyland and California Adventure, so we went out with the girls to say good bye one last time!
With perfect timing, my Mom and Tina got back to their adjoining room just after the kids had all drifted off and we were all packed up! They stayed to do their own packing while Carl and I went back out to enjoy the evening (the park was open until midnight) with his folks! We were just in time to slip in for the World of Color show at California Adventure after doing a little souvenir shopping of our own. They let us into a fast pass area since it wasn't full.
It was a great show, maybe a little long, but definitely very well done! We were hoping to ride California Screamin' but it had been closed for the show and by the time we got there after it reopened, we weren't willing to stand that long in line. So after saying good night to Carl's folks we wandered out of California Adventure and into World of Disney to finish our souvenir shopping.
By the time we got back to our room and into bed it was almost 1am... a late night for an early start since we were catching the shuttle at 6am!
I think both Lauren and I look amazingly perky considering it is 5:52 am and our shuttle had just pulled away for the airport...
yep, you read that right!! We walked off the elevator at 5:50 because I had been told that we needed to be in the lobby at 5:50 to catch the shuttle that leaves at 6:00 (and I distinctly remember double checking that it was be in the lobby at 5:50 and it left at 6:00...). Well, we needed our behinds in the seat on the shuttle bus by 5:50... we were more than a little upset to say the least. Luckily we had opted to to catch an earlier shuttle (our flight was at 8:30 so either the 6am or 7am would work, but thought we might feel to short on time if we caught the 7:00 shuttle). So we still had time to get to the airport - just not real impressed to hang out in the lobby for an hour and that time of morning with three little ones who could have used the extra sleep!!
Fortunately, the rest of the trip home went smoothly. I got all three kids in a row with me for the first segment, and then pawned Karen and Megan off on Carl for the second segment!
And that, my friends, is a wrap of our first ever family vacation!! (outside of visiting family or Priest Lake)!
Disneyland 2013 ... we'll be back! :)