Isn't it funny how the magic of parades seem to continually decrease over the years? Don't get me wrong...they're still fun, but not quite what they once were...
That evening, we went to the Stadium of Fire! Very awesome! Definitely something worthwhile and something we would do again. However, us being there was kind of unintentional. When the tickets first became available, Jason bought six with the idea of selling them later at a higher price. So...needless to say, Jonas Brothers didn't quite pull through for us. We ended up giving the tickets to Jason's parents and older brother. Hopefully Jason learned his lesson this time :)
Also in July, we were lucky enough to go to California and Disneyland with my family! Jason and I LOVE Disneyland and we were so happy that my family decided to go! Unlike parades, Disneyland has a magic that does not go away with age!
One rather funny memory was just the drive to California itself. We left in the evening and drove all through the night and into the morning. That means eight of us riding in our Suburban for hours and hours. By the time we drive through Vegas, it is somewhere between two and three in the morning. However, my parents didn't want to just "drive through" Vegas, for some crazy reason they thought it would be a "fun family activity" to walk the strip in the wee hours of the morning! I thought they were joking when they brought it up, but to my disbelief, they were completely serious. We spent the next hour walking the Las Vegas strip in our pajamas. Jason likes to add to the story his disturbing awakening. As soon as we pulled up to Vegas, my dad started blasting Michael Jackson music (in memory of his recent death)! Apparently that is the last thing Jason wants to have wake him up from a much needed sleep. We made it to California just in time to go to church with my Great Aunt Deanne. All I remember after that is sprawling on her floor with shaggy carpet in my face, desperately taking a nap.
The first two days in California we spent at Huntington Beach. It felt like forever since I had been to the beach. We spent the days relaxing, laying out, reading, playing in the water, and body boarding.
The last night before leaving to Anaheim, we ate at the famous Jolly Roger.
My family got a two-day "hopper" pass, so we spent most of the first day at Disneyland.
This is me on Splash Mountain...I have never gotten so wet on a ride in my life! I was completely drenched!
Ok, funny story about this picture...every time a ride would take a picture, my little brother, Bryan, would be covered up! I'm not exaggerating! EVERY SINGLE TIME! He started getting really frustrated because he said he would come up with these funny faces he wanted to show, but he would always be covered up. The more it kept happening, the more I couldn't help but laugh at it, and the more he kept getting emotional about it! Poor guy! If you can't tell from this picture, Bryan is sitting right behind Jason and right in front of my dad in the back. You can see his arms extended...as I said...completely covered!
...and to our complete surprise, we ended up eating at The Blue Bayou that afternoon (that's the cute little restaurant inside Pirates of the Caribbean). My family never eats anywhere like that when we go to Disneyland, or on vacation in general. So it was quite the treat!
The whole day, we tried to convince Bryan to go on the Maliboomer at California Adventure. The Maliboomer is like the Rocket at Lagoon. He refused to go! It looked like something that would be too scary for him. To our shock, he finally gained some courage and said he would go on it. We ran over to California Adventure, and here is the video Jason filmed while sitting next to him:
He's trying so hard to be brave, but it sucks the breath right out of him...can't even keep his eyes open. There's a moment there where he looks like he might start to cry...but he pulls through!
To give you a little taste of how my family "does" Disneyland and California Adventure, our day includes getting up at 7:00 am in order to get ready in time for the free continental breakfast at the hotel (which is always pathetic and awful). We have to get to the park before it opens so we can wait in line and be among the first people inside. As my dad says with a smile, "We have to get our money's worth!" And of course we don't leave until after the park is closed. It may be exhausting and a little crazy, but I wouldn't want it any other way! We have also become quite the experts at Fast Passes. I don't remember waiting in a single normal line for any of the big rides. If you don't use Fast Passes...you are insane!!
It was such a fun trip! I'm so glad my family was able to go and I hope we can go again soon! Jason and I are so blessed to have two amazing families!