Disneyland Paris

We had to take Aimee to Disneyland Paris and since it was four years since our last trip, I had to buy tickets. I am not exaggerating when I say I made the stupidest mistake ever by thinking we could take a bus from Paris to Disneyland. Let me say, Google maps totally mislead me. We waited for a bus forever and got frustrated and finally asked another bus driver where the hell the bus was. He told me that bus only runs at night. Since we wasted an hour waiting for the non-existing bus and many of the metro lines were stopped due to a strike I used a last resort of calling Uber. We ended paying $95 for a 40 minute ride. Well, the good news was, it was a beautiful day and Disneyland was a ghost town! We knew there was World Cup game that afternoon but we didn’t know it was the final game so literally all of France was watching the game as we rode every ride three or four times in a row! It is so nice to experience Disneyland without the crowds and tickets that are a little less than $100. Isn’t it like $250 bucks and a kidney in California?

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The park was so empty! We had this police car to ourselves and Liv even got to go behind the wheel.

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Fun fact: You remember that hat box I brought with all our luggage from Los Angeles? Well, I packed a few of my Disneyland Mickey ears in it. I even brought my souvenir Disney pins but I didn’t want to wear them on my neck all day. Aimee bought Liv a new set of Mad Hatter ears.

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She’s actually a good driver in real life. I let her drive my car at Mom’s private roads in the desert.

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We were bummed to find the Alice in Wonderland Mad Hatter Teacups ride was closed for maintenance. Oh well, I could ride It’s a Small World all day!

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I couldn’t believe that our favorite ride Le Phantom Manor (The Haunted Mansion) was also closed for maintenance. We had to promise Liv to bring her back when it re-opens in the spring.

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We made up for our disappointment by riding Pirates of the Caribbean and Hyperspace Mountain with a FIVE minute wait! That is like impossible in California, even if you have Fast Passes.

Pirates

We figured out how to take the RER train back home and our Metro passes worked. We were lucky to get seats because the station after Disneyland was packed.

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Little did we know that Paris was having the biggest celebration in twenty years. Les Bleus/ The French soccer team won the 2018 FIFA World Cup! It was their first World Cup in twenty years. When we left the metro every single Parisian was celebrating. We sang along even though we didn’t know the words!

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It was exhilarating and a little scary seeing the French celebrate all over Paris. We were so used to seeing them angry because of some protest but this was incredible to witness. This is what we saw when we arrived at our station in Republique which is the center of Paris.

I love my adopted country!! Allez Les Bleus and Vive la France!

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California Adventure

It’s been awhile (three and a half years to be exact) since we visited Disney’s California Adventure park. It was a rad day, not too crowded or hot but about half the rides were closed for refurbishment.

 

This was our first time meeting Oswald

 

It was also our first time going to Cars Land

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fun Wheel was unexpectantly terrifying!

 

 

 

Oh hey Micks!
We met Woody and then…
Buzz joined us!
My unintentional boob shot of my Disney pin collection

 

 

 

This guy’s tie wins!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Frozen Snow Zone was super fun!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Olivia added Marie to her animal menagerie

 

 

 

Cars Land looked amazing at dusk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ultimate photo bomb, Ant had no idea these guys where there
Such incredible neon signage

 

 

 

Radiator Springs Racers is totally my most favorite ride!

 

 

Liv must have collected 30 Mickey stickers

 

 

 

 

Such a fun day!

 

Olivia’s 4th Birthday at Disneyland Paris

We had a small birthday party for Liv at our apartment and then surprised her with a trip to Disneyland Paris. I booked it through Viator so we were picked up in a coach and driven right to Disneyland’s front entrance. Since we were getting picked up by the company, we spent twelve hours at Disneyland. It wasn’t even close to dark when we left! I think it’s safe to say she enjoyed her fourth birthday in Paris.

We celebrated with a sparkler candle I bought from Urbanic and tart au fraise from the local patisserie
Antz made a brilliant wrapping paper solution
I am sure this is going to be a birthday she never forgets. *I won’t let her!*
These crazy eyes are super excited
I always head to City Hall to get a badge before we begin
She spoke very little English but I understood Joyeux anniversaire, Olivia
She got a special birthday call from Mickey in French
If I had more room in our luggage, I would have bought this Snow White doll
Olivia is so thrilled to get this Blanche-Neige dress
Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant
Liv would not let go of the sides of her dress. She transformed into a princess
Who’s the Fairest of them all?
The Snow White ride was much scarier than the California version, the French really enjoy scaring kids
Liv was accidentally mistaken for Snow White
Alice’s Curious Labyrinth
This way Daddy!
OFF WITH HER HEAD!
Liv finally got us out of that Shining-like maze
She told every single cast member it was her birthday
This was worth everything to see her face light up!
Tweddledum was trying to freak me!
This was Liv during the entire ride. The Phantom Manor is much more scarier than the tame California one
Gorgeous shot Antz
We finally found a place to eat that wasn’t a buffet. Who goes to an all-you-can eat buffet at an amusement park?
Okay, last time I saw Captian EO was the late eighties, I couldn’t believe they had it here
Olivia was so excited when she saw the poster, but sadly the ride has been closed for years, BOO!
Since she told the crew it was her birthday, she got VIP front of the line treatment
Every single ride was a five minute wait, except to see the Mouse

 

Waiting for the parade
The long sought after Elsa plush. I should have bought ten and sold them on the Frozen black market!
All the kids went ape shit for this float
Happy birthday kiddo! We love you!!

Disneyland / Olivia’s 3rd Birthday

We spent 9 hours at Disneyland which is a new record for us. It was a perfect day, not too hot but sunny and bright. *Antz is absolutely miserable in hot weather* It was crowded with summer tourists but the lines were all less than 20 minutes wait. This is Liv’s 4th visit so we focused on finding her favorite characters more than rides. We found Tinkerbell and her friends, the Fairy Godmother, Snow White, Aurora, Ariel, Cindy and Mickey. I grabbed a corn dog *they are the best!* and got us fast passes for the newly vamped Star Tours ride *well, new to us* while Antz and Liv waited in line to meet Tinkerbell for 45 minutes! We rode all of Liv’s favorites and even rode the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters twice *she loves shooting the robots* Since she was all dressed up in her new Cinderella gown, she had tons of folks saying hello and saying how adorable she was. Even though technically it wasn’t her birthday, we had to get her a birthday badge. Sorry it’s taken me an entire week to sort out the photos and upload them.

Her dad put fairy dust in her hair
I love this sign, it makes me all giddy with excitement

Riding the fire truck was cool since we had it all to ourselves

Her jumps crack me up, she always looks like she’s levitating
So did you know that Tink has an entourage of fairy friends? This one had a southern accent. *Rosetta, I think*
This was the first time I ever saw the Fairy Godmother, she asked how old Liv was.
They sang Bibbity-bobbity-boo
Maybe I’m used to seeing Aurora asleep but she looked, different awake
Liv has only seen the Little Mermaid once so she was feeling pretty shy with Ariel
Ariel saw Liv’s outfit and grabbed her and took off down the hall *Antz and I were like, …okay?*
 Liv went nuts when she met Cinderella. They had a long chat.
Liv was like, I couldn’t wear my glass slippers so Cindy showed Liv her shoes
Twirling
Curtsy-ing

Seeing the big guy!
Sometimes I want to buy a season pass just for the corn dogs!

She had a magical 3rd birthday. I’m putting together her 3rd Birthday time capsule tonight.

Birthday Planning Part Two

I have had a busy week. I took Olivia to The Coop. This is the place we were going to have her 3rd birthday but we decided to take her to Disneyland instead. Antz thinks she should be at least 4 or 5 for her first real birthday party so she remembers it. I think we have had such a fun time on her birthday with just the 3 of us, we enjoy our family mini vacations. I’m really excited to finally check out Cars Land. We might stay at the Grand Californian and make a weekend of it, we’ll see. So, I really like The Coop but Liv, she LOVED IT! There was many tears shed when it was time to go.

She’s making sad face cause she didn’t want to take off her shoes
This is where they serve cake during birthday parties, CUTE!

Here’s a video on my vine. I love that dancefloor. There’s an outdoor patio with benches but I ran out of room on my iphone to take pictures. It’s the perfect place for a party. We just think this year isn’t best for our plans. I want to take her back to play soon because she was heartbroken when we had to leave. The Coop is only open for play during the week since weekends its closed for private birthday parties. 

So really exciting news happened yesterday. My BFF Aimee bought her new car!!!

Look at that enormous smile!

I am so happy happy and proud of her. She literally drove a rickshaw for years and this is her dream car. I love the minty green color, it’s really fun to ride in it *even though I’m a giant in her little car* Now I’m off the hook for driving on all our dates. Liv has a movie date with Godmommy next Thursday.

Disneyland!!

Monday Antz took the day off. He woke Liv and I up at 8am and told us, “We are going to Disneyland!” We only stayed until 2pm because Liv had Discovery program at school at 3:30. Antz took her so he could meet her amazing teacher and I didn’t want Liv to be distracted with both of us there *like she used to when we took her to dance class together* They had a blast and when they returned, Antz took a short nap and back to Disneyland we went. We rode a few rides but Liv was amped up to watch the fireworks show. We stayed until 11 and as our tradition, we rode It’s a Small World for our last ride.
It wasn’t that crowded for a warm summer day but school has started for most of the kids in LA and I think a lot of folks were over at California Adventures checking out the new Cars World. Thanks for the fun and spontaneous day my love!!

$178 for 2 adults seems reasonable

Liv was fascinated by the Evil Queen peeking out of Snow White’s castle

This is what happens when you ask the wrong person to take your picture, can you even see us?

The Haunted Mansion broke down right after we left the room that stretches, we had to exit the ride. We ended up going back on when we came back later that night. My favorite ride in the park.
Nap before school

Youtube is being a brat with my videos so here’s one of Liv on my flickr.

Our Disneyland Photo Shoot

YAY! YAY! YAY!!! Sarah just finished the Disneyland pics. I am literally jumping up and down with excitement. This is always my favorite part of working with her, seeing the magic she creates for the first time. She gave me a few previews at the park but it’s so much different to see the bright color *seriously, these look like a postcard* of the actual photos. I definitely will be booking her again and again and again and again!!!

REE-DIC!! Sarah I heart you so much girl. I am supercalifragalisticexpialidously happy right now.
I made this video of the photo shoot.

Disneyland Photo Shoot

Tragedy struck our lovely Disneyland trip. I got sick. REAL sick! I got a bad case of germies, sneezing, coughing, achy, stuffy all those Nyquil symptons yet I can’t take any meds until I talk to Dr. Wang. I bought some Cold Eaze and drank tea but this cold is here to stay.

We met Sarah at 11:30. I made a reservation at Ariel’s Grotto for a character lunch but we were trying to get as many Disneyland shots in 2 hours that we had to skip going to California Adventures. It was a nice day and surprisingly not crowded *I’m talking 5-10 minute waiting in lines* We got some awesome shots but I couldn’t find any balloon vendors so I was lacking them in my jump shots. But man, my jump shots were freaking stellar!! I jumped off of a bench in front of the Enchanted Castle and I got some major air. Sarah had to leave around 2 but we stayed until 6pm. I finally found the one balloon vendor at the park and she let me take pics with all the balloons.

We bought a Minnie one for Liv.

Antz made this fantastic sign for me and we used our moustaches.
We were able to go on a ton of rides, Haunted Mansion, It’s a Small World, Mad Hatter Teacups, Pinocchio, Snow White, and Jungle Cruise

This is my iphone, we look weird, like we’re made of clay

We scored a pic with the big Kahuna on Main Street but we had to ask the woman in line behind us to take our pic and of course the pics came out crappy. Antz is going to work his magic and try to lighten the shots before I post them. I took some shots with Goofy that came out okay.

I took this one
Thanks lady….sheesh!
Antz brightened this picture in Photoshop, unfortunately Liv wasn’t looking

My camera always manages to fail me when it comes to night shots. If I use the auto setting, the flash makes everything dark as seen here;

Auto with flash

No Flash, this was taken at dusk

No flash, see how blurry

With flash, Boo!

We had a yummy lunch at the French Market. Usually we get a corn dog but the food was super yum!! I had 3 cheese pasta and veggies and Antz had the garlic herb chicken. We shared cheesecake and listening to a jazz band *why was I the only one that knew all the songs, NERD!!*

I knew I was sick on the drive home, I had to pull over and let Antz drive. Friday we had our tax appt. with Gail and she made us very happy indeed again this year. *happy, happy, joy, joy dance*

She gave us some peas from her amazing organic garden. Antz and I really want to make a raised garden in the backyard but I am apprehensive from several past garden attempts *spinach, strawberries, herbs, chili peppers and greens, all sadly no longer with us*

This was our best spring garden, we used manure and the daisies were my favorite.

Aww, I love my gnomie, he’s all faded from the sun now.

This is how the garden looked the week we moved in.

I really liked the flowers this year 2008 but it always looks awesome in early spring but by summer it’s dead from the sun exposure.

The spinach was doing great but eventually it died.

The current state of our garden. We threw some random wildflower seeds out there that are starting to bloom but I would like it to fill out in the middle.

I would like to have something like this.

So maybe we’ll put something together in the next month but my priority project is our bathroom. I want new tile floors, plaster the tub and shower wall in white, paint and new storage.
I still need to get quotes and work on the budget. We picked up the shoes from the Pump Station and bought the hat which were on sale *sweet*

Sneeze, sniff, sniff, cough! I hope I’m not so miserable tomorrow at Leslie & Stephen’s Valentines Brunch. I’m making blueberry muffins in the morning *while wearing a medicinal mask, of course*.  
AH-CHOO!!

Dizzzneeeland & Cali Adventchaaas!

We didn’t leave the house until 2pm *way to procrastinate Liz!!* However, it was sort of worth the late start because I straightened my hair so I wouldn’t look too embarrassing

My ‘fro last weekend at the Hollywood farmers market

Now although everyone keeps telling me my hair looks full and lush, they don’t understand how devastated I’ve been for the last 2 months because what they do not tell you in breastfeeding class is your hair starts to fall the fuck out!!! What kind of twisted sense of humor does nature have by rewarding the booby-feeding Mommy’s with bald patches?! I was crying in the shower when I saw how much hair was in the hair trap. I’ve even tried to camouflage it with headbands
 and wearing hats all the time.

Me & Mummy 
Well, we hit the road just before the 3pm traffic so it only took about 40 minutes to get to Anaheim. I was so surprised how many folks were still arriving at 3 *the park closed at 6* but it turned out that the reason the park was closing at 6pm was because the staff was having their company party that night. Grr!
The plan was to track down Mickey so we could get a pic for our Christmas card but that didn’t happen. We did get a few in front of the huge Christmas Tree that were great, but Liv’s collar from her coat was blocking her face so we will probably take a pic at home and use that. When we got in the park everyone was lining up for a parade so most of the park was roped off so we couldn’t find Mickey. We spent almost 20 minutes in line just to get a corn dog *so yummy*. Then we hurried over to Fantasyland to ride Dumbo, Casey Circus Train ride and It’s a Small World. I tried to get Fast Pass tickets for Haunted Mansion but it was already 5pm so they weren’t giving them out *BOO* We bought the only hat that *almost* fit Liv’s tiny head and I got some new ears. We didn’t find any ears that we liked for Antz so he just stuck with his beanie. We didn’t have any trouble getting people to take our pic since we would offer to take their picture, then they would take ours *and luckily noone cut our heads off* Liv seemed to not care at all about being at Disneyland but she did enjoy It’s a Small World *which has been totally redone for Christmas* Speaking of It’s a Small World, can you believe Antz & I made a new friend while waiting in line!! We were taking pics and I kept complaining that I couldn’t get all of us with the Nikon *I was using the big lens that couldn’t take close up photos* so this chick behind us offered to take our pic. She was saying how she understands when you get home and there’s all these pictures of just the 2 of you. We started talking and she told us she was preggo and due in 2 weeks!! She had a 3 year old daughter with her and she was speaking Finnish to her. OMG!! I almost died, I told her how much I love Europe and how mega rad it was that her daughter spoke Finnish. She ended up riding with us on It’s a Small World because we were so engrossed in conversation. I barely remembered to take pics/video. She was sooo awesome, I added her to my facebook and got her phone number. She invited us to her daughter’s birthday in January and if she hasn’t delivered yet, we are planning to meet at the Long Beach Aquarium during Christmas week. By the time the Small World ride was over, the park had closed so we walked over to California Adventures. We hugged and said goodbye, it was crazy, like I knew this chick my entire life. My new friend, Aura told me that just last week someone stole her Bugaboo stroller with her diaperbag and her camara in the bottom basket, MAJOR LAME!! The entire time Antz kept telling me someone is going to steal our stroller but I kept telling him, who comes to Disneyland to steal strollers? Apparently some assholes are that evil to take a baby’s stroller! We know for sure when we come back in February, we won’t bring the stroller. Liv stayed in the BabyHawk most of the time anyway.

Antz and I picked up our pre-paid World of Color show picnics *super gross, I threw mine away* but it included VIP seating for the show so we were right in the front *although we had to stand and waited for almost an hour* The show was really incredible. It was a mix of a water show *like the Belliagio in Las Vegas* and a Disney concert. Liv’s eyes looked like they were about to pop out of her head watching the show. She really loved the water effects and we danced to the music. We stopped by a gift shop on the way out and bought a new frame for Antz desk.

I forgot to get pins but we got Liv a bunch of buttons and a light-up Mickey toy. I really needed to find some gloves for her but I couldn’t find any in her size. We left at 9 and drove around forever because we couldn’t make up our mind for what to eat for dinner. We ended up going to a dive hamburger place in Alhambra that was too expensive *$18 for an avocado burger and 4 tacos!* I’m so glad Liv enjoyed her 1st trip to Disneyland because we are going again in February with Sarah to take pics and we should get some amazing photos.

I LOVE how the wide lens pictures turn out but it’s annoying that you can’t take any close ups. We used the Canon Powershot for close ups but they didn’t come out as nice as the Nikon.

We made the major mistake of not bringing her warm hat because I thought she would be wearing her ears most of the time, but I should know better, it was pretty windy and cold.

This one was taken by a cast member, I like it, but I want one with Liv wearing her ears for the Christmas Card

Not liking any of these hats, is it me or do they look like they are from Big Lots or Kmart?

Love the guy who took these for us, they came out perfect…

If only Liv’s coat wasn’t blocking her face!!

This tree was ree-dic-u-lous!!!

Liv wasn’t so impressed

Boo, I don’t like overcast skies, Antz thinks it’s great because it wasn’t hot but I’m not down with dreary weather!

I’ve been to Disneyland maybe 20 times and never have seen a line for corn dogs!

Worth $13??

What a huge weiner! *that’s what she said*

Making Liv laugh

Time to buy Liv’s 1st ears

I wanted the retro black ears, but they were much too big

So we got the pink smaller ears and had her name embroidered in the fancy Script font

I am loving this picture *a possible contender for our Christmas Card*

I am dying over her smush face!! In line for Dumbo

Even though I wanted pics of the 3 of us, Antz rode in a car ahead of us to get better shots

Case in point: This was as far as Antz could zoom out to get Dumbo in the shot *lesson learned* use our smaller lens.

I made the car fly up and down but Liv was pretty mellow yellow about the ride. She looks sad but she was like, meh!

Smile for the camera!

The good thing about the large lens is this feature, I love the still shot of us and the blurred background. I don’t know how to do that with the smaller lens.

Antz took about 20 pics of me and Liv before we finally found someone to take a pic of all 3 of us. I can’t wait for Sarah to go to Disneyland with us, I know she will take some amazing shots

While Mommy & Papa feasted on churros….

Liv had Tahitian squash, she chugged it down!

I tried *in vain* to get some shot of New Orleans Square while I was trying to get Fast Pass tickets for Haunted Mansion.

I really believe my camera has epilepsy because these shots are having a seizure! I tried every setting to get the teacups lanterns and this was the best one.

Same with the night setting. I always have trouble with taking pictures of lights. I should take a photography class.

I took these with the Canon and it obviously looks better than the Nikon *BOO*

Our new friend Aura took this shot!

She was conked out at the begining of the ride

I love the ominous path of It’s a Small World as the park shuts down.

Testing out the different night settings *no flash*
Night setting came out better but it’s still blurry *throws hands up, I give up!!*

The best one, I stood on a bench to get this shot.

I breastfed while standing hands-free *well, I was wearing the BabyHawk*

Watching the World of Color Show *Liv was mesmerized*

So, what did I learn? Always pack warm clothes/hat for Liv *even though the diaper bag is full to the max and when ever I do pack extra, I never use it*. We don’t need the stroller, there is a risk it could get stolen and it’s a bitch to fold it up on the tram ride. Plan out our route so we don’t waste time zigzagging around the park. We walked in circles so by the time we got to Cali Adventures I was tired. If I pick up the Fast Pass as soon as we get there we can start in Fantasyland and by the time we ride 4 or 5 rides, it will be time to head over to New Orleans Square. I was never a big fan of Tomorrowland or Frontierland *with the exception of the Jungle Cruise and Pirates* We totally forgot to take Liv to the Finding Nemo Submarine ride. Make sure Liv has a nap before we go, she totally fell asleep at the beginning of It’s a Small World but luckily she woke up midway through. Wait until the end of the day to buy souvenirs, so I won’t have to lug them around. As we were waiting in line for the World of Color show, Antz brought something to my attention that I need to prepare for when we go back in February. He said please think about when you get home and edit all the photos we take so you won’t say to me that you aren’t happy with how the pictures came out. I realize I either end up with too many pics of me & Liv or Antz & Liv. I also take photos of buildings and later I have a what was I thinking moment. So I need to think of the shots I want beforehand. I think the shots we took were okay but they look a bit too posed and predictable. I would like more candid and pictures that show off our personality, not just the same old all 3 of us smiling in front of something pose. I really don’t have to worry, I keep forgetting that I am in good hands with Sarah.