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April 28, 2014

Spring Break Retrospective

(Well nigh a month ago) We surprised the kids (and treated ourselves) with a Spring Break trip to California! With Joel and I as their guides, Adelaide and Henry hopped aboard their first airplane flight, crossed the country, and found that travel suited them.


We stayed with our beloved family who live just a stone's throw from the great Pacific Ocean, so naturally, the evening of our arrival, we had to stroll down and meet the salty sea.


We discovered some fantastic bits and bobs from the sea and were bathed in its waters before we headed home, revived and refreshed from our travels.


We simply loved every minute we shared together, with Kathleen, Lisa, Claire and Jonas, made more special after such a long drought in visiting. Being together, in that familiar, cozy bungalow with the generous warmth of these fantastic people, was my best souvenir.


Sweet Jonas showed us all the best local spots to play ...


... especially at the beach! (Be certain to give the red flags and the surfers a wide berth.)


We also spent an afternoon getting trounced by Mame in a ladies-only Scrabble game!


And, of course, we went over to Anaheim to see The Mouse. We splurged and stayed at the beautiful on-site hotels and were hugely rewarded with a lot of magic. It was Joel's very first time at Disneyland with little kids, and I think their suspension of disbelief finally worked out all the kinks from Residency.


The park was filled to capacity both days we visited, so lines for attractions were very, very long (e.g., Space Mountain = 2 hours, Matterhorn Bobsleds = 90 minutes, Storybookland Canal Boats = 60 minutes). Our spirits could not be trampled by the thousands of feet, and our smiles, traditional Mickey Mouse ears, and cheerful attitudes won us a big present! We making our way from Fantasyland to the Jungle Cruise when we were stopped by Jeff, the Head Maintenance Man for Disneyland, who chatted us up, told us some great corny jokes, and walked us to the Jungle Cruise and put us on the first available boat in front of a sign that said "The Wait for the Jungle Cruise is 120 minutes"! He sent us off on our cruise with a grin and an additional treat: an official Disneyland "jump the line" pass, good to budge in line for any additional ride of our choosing! After the Jungle Cruise, we booked it back to Fantasyland used our ticket to take one more spin on the kids' favorite ride, "Peter Pan's Flight" (Wait without the voucher? 2 hours.).


With the sun on our skin, the wind in our hair, the salt on the air, and the wide, rolling ocean before us, we were charmed by our wonderful vacation.