California Dreaming

I don’t know about you, but we’ve had a pretty busy few weeks at our home. It just feels like that since February we have had more to do than we can fit into each day. Usually I spend quite a bit of time in the weeks before March break getting ready for our spring trip, doing research and making plans, but I’ve just realized that we’re heading out in less than 72 hours and there’s still a lot to get done.

I guess part of the reason I can be a little more relaxed about planning this trip is that we’re not really going anywhere new this time. We’ll be spending a week in one of our favourite destinations, San Diego, and then five days at Disneyland. It will be a near repeat of one of our first family trips in fall 2012. The kids were two and three at the time and we had a wonderful time in California. It was pretty much the perfect trip for kids that age, but no matter how well things go with kids that age, there’s a good chance they won’t remember it. And sure enough, even though they had a wonderful time, when I ask them what they remember about Legoland or the San Diego Zoo they come up with nothing.

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So in a few more days we’ll be packing up to sunny California for take two. The great thing about travelling with kids is that you can never go on the same trip twice, even if you return to the same location. California with a five and a six year old will be a very different experience. My son has gone from being merely interested in Lego to being completely and totally obsessed with Lego and my daughter is already making a list of the animals she wants to see at the zoo. We’ve gone from viewing the carousel as a thrill ride and believing they’ve met the real Cinderella to riding Big Thunder Mountain and Star Tours. But I don’t care how old my kids get; we’re still waiting in line to meet Winnie the Pooh!

We will be trying a few new things this time. We’ll be staying our first night in California at the Legoland Hotel in Carlsbad as a special treat for our son for his 5th birthday. It was still under construction when we visited back in 2012 and it looks like it will be a lot of fun. The rooms come in Pirate, Adventure or Kingdom theme and have a separate sleeping area with bunks for the kids. My son chose the Pirate theme and he reminds his sister at least once a day that since it’s his birthday treat, he will be the one sleeping in the top bunk. I’ve heard great things about the hotel and we’re really looking forward to it.

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In Anaheim we’ll be trying out a new hotel, the Homewood Suites Anaheim Maingate. We love the Homewood Suites chain in general and we hope this one won’t disappoint. We’ve previously stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn which is in a perfect location just across the street from the entrance to Disneyland. It’s a perfectly adequate hotel and we loved being close enough to take an afternoon break every day, but we wanted a bit more comfort and space since we were there for six nights. It’s about a mile from the entrance so we’ll have to rely on a shuttle for transportation, but since we don’t have to worry about nap breaks these days it should work out fine.

So now it’s one more day of work, one day to pack and prepare and then we’re off! And as an added bonus, we will hopefully leave behind the crazy allergens we have around British Columbia these days and my husband will be able to breath again for a couple of weeks. Hopefully we’ll have a great chance to rest up, enjoy some warm weather, re-experience some familiar favourites and hopefully find a few new ones. Bring on California, we can hardly wait!

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