Well, I did it. I survived another trip to Disneyland. Every time we go I think to myself, "self, why do you keep doing this?", but every time we go I also have at least one moment where the looks on my kids' faces remind me why.
I don't know if you follow the weather in Anaheim CA, but let me just update you a little bit. There has been an extreme heat advisory for the past three days (I do believe it ends tomorrow), which means that we were in the parks in over one hundred degree weather. Now, I live in an area where "hot" is one hundred and ten degrees, so that triple digit heat wasn't the worst part. It was the humidity. It was miserable. Fun, but miserable. When Patience and I rode on the Under the Sea Carousel thing I was literally sliding off my goldfish because I was so incredibly sweaty, and I seriously considered just laying down in the water feature for a while.
When I last wrote, I said that I was going to talk about places that we enjoy eating and drinking while we are at Disneyland (the entire resort area), and that works out perfectly since this last trip we did involved a lot of eating (ok and some drinking). Previously, I talked a little bit about the Ramada Maingate at the Parks, but what I didn't mention was that it is super duper close to the Garden Walk. I think it took us longer to load everyone into the car and then find parking than it would have taken to just walk over. I really wanted to visit the Lush store and load up on bath bombs and bubble bars and whatever else they sell, but since my family is eternally running behind I didn't have time to meander and shop, and we went straight to dinner at Cheesecake Factory. Cheesecake Factory is like old reliable, and this one in particular is so close to the Disneyland Resort that it was full of families with small children so I wasn't super worried about mine being the crazy kids that create havoc.
My number one restaurant requirement for the kids is that there be a lot of other kids there! There is safety in numbers! If there is a bunch of tables with families no one is going to side eye me when Charlie throws her food on the wall and I give the twins their iPads to keep them happy during the second half of the meal.
On Tuesday we had an early lunch at Tortilla Joe's in the Downtown Disney District. I'm an absolute sucker for table side guacamole so this is one of my favorite places when we have a full on sit down lunch. I also am fond of Tortilla Joe's because it is where we all ate and got hammered the night before our wedding. They have great (pricey like everything at Disney) drinks, but we skipped those this time. My husband always orders the Steak Ranchera plate and just about licks it clean, and I recommend the Spicy Mamacita Margarita if you like jalepeños.
Tuesday night a good friend of mine came and hung out with the kids at the hotel so that Chad and I could take my mom out for her birthday! Even though the weather was super swampy we still went to our absolute favorite place in DT Disney, the Uva Bar right smack in the middle of the action. If you are wondering, yes Uva Bar is child friendly... in fact, my kids actually know it by name. They do have a kid's menu and high chairs readily available, and it is outside so if your kids are a little loud no one will even notice. This time though, it was nice to go adults only! I highly recommend the Uva Street Fries with an egg. So yummy! They also make an excellent signature mojito as well as sangria.
After Uva Bar we walked to Trader Sam's at the Disneyland Hotel. If you haven't visted for a long time, Trader Sam's is where the Lost Bar used to be and the entire pool area is re-done. Our beloved Rose Garden is still there though, so we like to take a quick pic in the gazebo every time we are there. I have never been to Trader Sam's without the kids before! I have always sat in the area by the fire place with the big cushioned benches (which is an awesome area), and sort of moved the furniture around to corral the kids. This time I still didn't get to sit inside the bar since it was so crowded, but I graduated to the actual patio where the music is played! Huzzah! I ordered a Mai Tai and only drank half because it was strong. If you know me, you know what that means.
We made it back to our hotel around eleven but stayed up pillow fighting with the kids until just after midnight. It was magical because the slept in late and I had time to make myself presentable for breakfast at Goofy's Kitchen the next day.
Is there any place more magical than Disneyland? Personally, I haven't seen one!
**I did not take these photos. If you are near the OC area and would like more information about the photog please email me or leave a comment with contact info. Thank you.