Disneyland. A place where dreams come true. A place where you can live within the magic. A place where you can walk amongst some of your favourite Disney characters. A place that turns your children in to over excited, hyperactive, irrational, bossy, beasts.
On our first day of Disney we got up early and went down for breakfast with the intention of filling our belly's to avoid having to fork out thousands of euros for snacks at the park. Oliver wouldn't eat a thing. He was too excited. He was jumping from one end of the table to the other. The most I managed to get down him was some icing from the top of an iced bun and half a sip of milk.
After passing rows and rows of Disney shops within the Disney Village and having my ears abused by consistent whinging and whining of "I want this..pleaasssseee" and "look at thiiiiiiisssss" we entered the Disneyland park.
As we walked in we saw a queue of children waiting to meet Pluto and decided to join the line. We stood there for 20 minutes until we saw Goofy on the other side with a much shorter queue and moved over to that line instead (Goofy is way cooler than Pluto!) After standing there in the baking sun for what seemed like an eternity, including waiting for Goofy to "go for a drink" and come back again (I'm presuming the guys shift was over and there was a new Goofy waiting in the wings to take his place as this new one appeared slightly taller!), we finally got to the front of the queue. As we walked forward to an open armed Goofy waiting to embrace us and have a photo taken I turned round to Oliver to usher him forward and was met with a face of dread. "Come on Oliver, say hello to Goofy!"
"I no like Goofy. He's too scary"
So there I stood at the front of a queue that we had been in for almost an hour, with a child who had suddenly decided that he was afraid of one of his favourite Disney characters. I had no choice but to stand there awkwardly, on my own and pose for photos with a guy dressed in a Goofy outfit. Great!
After this unfortunate incident we decided to go on a ride to get us out of the sun. We saw the Pinocchio ride and parked the pram ready to join the queue. Of course the queue was in a dark room and Oliver decided that the Pinocchio ride was far "too scary" to go on.
We managed to get him on the Buzz Lightyear lazer blast, which he cried on and then asked to go on again, much to our disbelief. Which we did, and this time he just covered his eyes throughout the whole ride. We also went on the Alice in Wonderland ride which was pretty cool, until we had been subjected to going on it for the fourth time.
After tea we went to see the Frozen show. We sat ourselves down and got ready for a cheesy sing a long with Anna, Elsa and Olaf. 10 seconds in to the show Oliver decided that it was "too scary" and began to cry, forcing us to leave. I wasn't blind to the looks of sheer puzzlement and mumbles of "really?" because our child had to be escorted out for being too scared of the least threatening Disney show ever. And let's bare in mind that one of Oliver's favourite films is "The Nightmare Before Christmas"
On the second day we ventured in to the Walt Disney Studios, after Oliver had consumed a massive breakfast of 3 grapes. He immediately spotted the Monsters Inc Scare floor and began acting out different scenes from Monsters Inc whilst bossing his Dad and I about as to where we should stand and what we should say. I think he would have been perfectly happy to stay there all day, and there was much tears and tantrums when we finally dragged him away from it.
Our intention that morning was to meet Buzz Lightyear who is Oliver's favourite Disney character. However, when we got there the queue was ridiculously long and I was having flashbacks from the Goofy incident. I could envision us queuing for infinity & beyond (see what I did there?) for me to be left alone at the front of the queue stood with Buzz Lightyear, and being forced to pose. So we figured a way round it. We went round the side of the queue and stood at the exit where children who were meeting him could leave. Here we had a perfect view of Buzz. After he had posed with a child we shouted "BUZZ!!!" Like a bunch of groupies, until he turned round and waved at us. We then snapped a photo and Oliver was ecstatic at the fact that his favourite space ranger had waved at him from a safe distance! We then did this with all the characters we happened to stumble across along our way. "Pluto! Minnie! Tweedle Dee!" We shouted, they turned, we waved and snapped their photo.
That day we also went to see the "Disney Parade". Now this was AMAZING! Oliver was literally shaking with excitement as all the characters came parading past him. There wasn't a "too scary" to be heard, and the experience was made even more fantastic by a giant Mickey Mouse Lollipop that we'd purchased beforehand!
At night we ate in the Rainforest Cafe. The whole restaurant was set out like a jungle with monkeys swinging above our heads, giant lizards on the walls next to us, giraffes, giant butterfly's and elephants. It was like you were actually sat having a meal in the middle of the rainforest. Everything was going swimmingly....until there was a thunderstorm. Ok, it was a fake one, but it was pretty scary and a bit of a shock when you're tucking in to your steak and it suddenly starts thundering and lightning. The elephant that Oliver had been so taken with came alive. His ears started waving up and down, he became very vocal and his trunk was going everywhere. Suddenly the funny elephant that was stood behind us was now the deadly, evil elephant that was about to rip our heads off. Or so it seemed to Oliver. He insisted on sitting on my knee for the rest of the meal with one eye on his food and the other on the elephant who had now calmed down. Every so often, the thunder storm would happen again. It was like eating a meal in the middle of a scene similar to that of Mary Poppins when the cannons go off and all the house shakes! The steak was pretty good though! The beer was even better.
The last day we decided to go toy & souvenir shopping. We had seen most of the attractions and had finally given in to Oliver's demands for every toy from every Disney Movie that was ever made. He had an Eyeore, a Bullseye from Toy Story, a Buzz Lightyear lazer gun, a Toy Story figure set and a Buzz Lightyear cup, which to be quite frank, I'm rather jealous of. We also picked up a few birthday presents for him when his back was turned. I got a Nightmare Before Christmas keyring and a fridge magnet. Daddy got a Tshirt and a Star Wars Keyring.
We ventured in to Adventure Island where there is a huge Pirate Ship from The Pirates of The Caribbean. Under the ship was a play area where kids could climb ropes, walk across planks, and slide down tunnels. Oliver decided to climb up a rope ladder and get stuck. I had no option but to climb up and get him. It may be worth mentioning that I was wearing a dress. And I'm terrified of heights. I climbed up the rope ladder with my knickers on show, and a man stood underneath me, because I'm really classy & not an embarrassing mum at all! I managed to claw my way to the top and grab hold of Oliver. With beads of sweat dripping in to my eyes we walked along a plank that seemed to be about a million metres up in the sky! Much to my horror kids were walking across it in the opposite direction ! They were walking right towards us! There was not enough room and I began manically screaming at them to "Back up! For the love of God Back up!!" When we got to the other side we realised it was actually US that had been walking the wrong way across the plank. I realised this when we were stood on a wooden ledge with nothing but a deadly drop below us. There were footholds in the wall of the deadly drop to which you were supposed to climb up. There was no way I was facing that plank again so I decided to climb down it with Oliver hanging round my neck for dear life. We'd come this far, there was pretty much nothing we couldn't face now! Needless to say we survived. But I think some people may have been scarred for life at the image of my massive white arse hovering in front of their eyes.
After the trauma of the pirate seas we decided that we should go and meet Mickey Mouse in his dressing room, considering he is the star of Disney!
We queued up for around 30 minutes and were then invited through to the backstage of the theatre where Mickey was waiting for us in his dressing room. And right on queue came those words "I no like Mickey! Mickey is scary!" However this time I insisted he stand with me and have a picture taken. Which he did, but with much reluctance! We should have stuck with the shout, wave and snap system!
On the last night I let Oliver and his Daddy go back to our hotel room whilst I stayed to watch the Disney Dreams Light Show. Oliver was tired and said he didn't want to watch it. I wish I'd made him stay. It was the best thing about the whole trip. The show was spectacular and took you on a visual and musical trip through all the Disney movies, hosted by Peter Pans shadow climbing around the castle. If you go to Disney you MUST go & see this. I did video it so Oliver could see what he'd missed out on but in fairness it didn't start until 11pm and after 3 days in Disneyland it's a bit late for a 3 year old to stay up and appreciate just how wonderful it is.
So there you have it! Our Disney holiday! And despite the unfortunate events of certain things being "too scary", there was far more things that were just plain AWESOME!! I still have a very excited 3 year old from our trip and the quality family time was fabulous in itself. Top holiday!!!
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