Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Happiest Place on Earth


Hello, my friends!

When your oldest daughter surprises you with the gift of three unexpected weeks of her dear presence, you take every advantage of that time that you can….


…and that’s just what we’ve been doing!


We thought, what could be more fun than taking a trip to “The Happiest Place on Earth”…all together as a family…a time to be kids again…even old Mom & Dad…


…so that’s just what we did.

From the turn-of-the-century nostalgia of Main Street…



…to a group of singing pirates near the “Pirates of the Caribbean” ride…


…to the hauntingly beautiful southern charm of the Haunted Mansion {my absolute favorite!}

IMG_7878_edited-1 {these were taken on two different days—such different lighting!}


…the wonderfully magical magic of Sleeping Beauty’s castle {my other absolute favorite!}…


…Oh! The vintage pinks & aquas mixed with that lovely stony gray, silver & gold…dreamy!


Fantasyland….aaaaahhhh…..the most childhood bringer-backer of them all…..

DSC08456_edited-1  DSC08450_edited-1

…the sweetly retro, slightly wonky futureness of Tomorrowland…


And how could I not mention the sweetest of all…Small World…oh, joy!



…and the gardens…oh, the gardens!



They have a special gift with gardening here…quite spectacular…


And with a “park-hopper” ticket, that’s just what you can do…


…California Adventure is just waiting next door with more fun in store…


…ferris wheel & roller coasters…(this Mom just can’t do those any more!)


…whimsical roofs & details everywhere you look…


…old Hollywood is the inspiration here…and I was soooo inspired!



…especially by my quiet, restful wait in the lobby of the Grand Californian Hotel.  Arts & Crafts style on display in the most beautiful way…absolute bliss for this Craftsman-loving girl!


This was my refuge for an hour or so while the rest of my family rode the “crazy” rides…{my equilibrium just won’t let me do those anymore!}


DSC08409_edited-1 {my favoritest of all favorite signs here…makes me smile…}

And, oh my goodness!  “The Tower of Terror”…I let them talk me into it.  I did it.  ONCE….


…and it scared me witless!  Don’t think I’ll ever do it again, but I’m actually kind of proud of myself for “surviving” it!

And oh!  Disneyland at night…that’s when the magic really happens!


I was much too much in awe of the amazing fireworks to think of taking any pictures of them…we were all simply entranced…


…and is there anything more magical than a carousel ride at night?  I just don’t think so…………..


The lights, the details, the sights, the sounds…


…the spinning, the giggles, the happy, happy faces…


…all things combined to make you feel like a child again…if only just for a couple of magical days and nights…

And as we left the park on our second and last night, I stopped to take a picture of this spot…a little bit of Disney legend learned while I was there…


On Main Street, just over the Disneyland Fire Department is a single window.  Behind this window was Walt Disney’s apartment—he would stay there occasionally when he was checking on things in the park, and would turn the light on in the window so that his employees would know that he was there that night…

…and on it remains, each and every night…


Quite a legacy left by this man and his partner, the mouse.  A dream began one day as he sat on a bench in a park while his daughters played…there really should be a place where families can come and play together, he thought…


Thank-you, Walt. We played, we smiled, we laughed…together.


But, I still think the “happiest place on earth” is right here, in our very own home, with the family I love…


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  1. Looks like you had a wonderful time! I am bribing my boys to go on California Screamin with me, my favorite coaster ever. But I just can't do that ferris wheel - it scares me to death! I am so excited for our family to go next week!

  2. Oh how fun!! I have been to the Disney in Florida but would love to go to the one in California!!

  3. what a wonderful way to spend a few days with your favorite people! wonderful fun pictures. I think I would be totally overwhelmed there... unsure of where to go or what to do first!
    glad you had a good time!

  4. So glad you had a chance to have everyone with you. This must have been an amazing trip. One that you will capture beautifully in a page for sure. Thank you for sharing your joy with us. Smiles...Renee

  5. What a fun post! I love the words you use... Some personal favorites from today: "bringer-backer", "wonky", and "futureness". :-) Thanks for helping us remember another wonderful memory. I love you, Mom!

  6. Julie, it was always my dream as a child to one day visit Disney Land. I still have not realized that dream. But I live in hope. I have loved visiting it through your eyes here this morning. How very wonderful! How very wonderful too, that you were able to do this as a family! Sweet! Love and hugs from sunny and warmer UK! xxoo

  7. How fun Julie!!
    I totally enjoyed our recent family vacation to Disney World...having us all together was truly magical!
    Love your photos!!

  8. Looks like it was such a happy and joyful time..
    Loved your photos.😃

  9. What a precious post. I want to take the GRANDS to Disneyland!!!! We were hoping this year but, I think it will be next! :( Thanks for sharing your fun adventure. I LOVED the little bit of history about the apartment above the Fire Station. I wonder how often he came? Have a great week. HUGS!

  10. Hi Julie, I have to tell you that your post about disneyland entertained two of my granddaughters just now, ages 3 1/2 and almost two. I am babysitting this morning and they have been to Disneyland and Evelyn knew what everything was! I have not been there since 2006. I would love to go with my grandkids!

  11. I have never been anywhere Disney so it is a treat for me to share your visit.
    I do agree that anywhere is better with family - as long as all are having a wonderful time.

  12. oh, i love disney world! what fun to see your photos and lovely smiling faces making wonderful memories together!!!

    sigh ... :)


  13. Sounds like you had a great time together at one of the most magical places. So glad you all got to do it together.

    Our family trip to Disney World and then on the Disney Cruise is one of the best memories.

    Have a great day, sweet friend.

  14. Oh you lucky people....

    DisneyLand is THE happiest place on earth (besides home) and even though I've been there over 30 times, I still, to this day wish to live there! It's the only other place in the whole world where I can escape being me, OR should I say....be the real me! I haven't been there in about 10 years, so I'm suffering major withdrawl.


  15. Now this is what I call a great post! I loooove Disney. I really miss it. I've been to Disney World too many times to count, but not for the past few years... although my family has been.

    I haven't yet found the courage to ride Tower of Terror, although I've definitely thought about it. The trouble there is no one ever wanted to ride it with me. (Or maybe that's a good thing? Lol!)


  16. One of my favorite places on earth! Have fun with your daughter. Mimi

  17. Oh Julie, sounds like a wonderful time. I've never been so I'm glad you shared it with us. I need to put it on my to do list!
    Hugs~~~ Daphne

  18. What a fun time that must have been for all of you. Gosh, I haven't been to Disneyland since I was pregnant with my FIRST child....and he is 39.
    Maybe it is time for another visit eh.

  19. Oh, it looks like you all had such a wonderful time! Beautiful photos Julie.

  20. It is the happiest place on earth!!! We love it there..our favourite place to have a family holiday. So glad you were able to enjoy having your daughter home...pure JOY!
    I LOVE your new look over here...hugs for a great day my friend. xoxox

  21. Thanks for your post! I LOVE Disneyland! When I lived in California, as a little girl, my Grandma took me and my siblings to "The Happiest Place On Earth" every summer. I remember when we used to get a book with A,B,C,D & E tickets and we had to choose wisely what rides we REALLY wanted to go on!! Thanks for bringing back memories - would like to go back and visit someday!

  22. Hi Julie - those are fantastic DL photos!!! I just went there recently, now I want to go back again after seeing your photos...xo

    -pamela :)

  23. Lovely photos! Have been to Orlando but never California:)

  24. I have yet to have this pleasure. Any who I love that you have had such a wonderful time together and quality time is the best, at home or abroad.

    Love Dawn xx

  25. Oh Julie what a fun day you all had at Disneyland! My favorite place too! Your pictures, color etc. is so pretty. Looking forward to seeing some scrapbooking pieces from a sweet day spent with loved ones!

    Love ya,

  26. I am so glad you got to spend that time with your girls! What a treat!! All of your pictures are just wonderful!
    Happy weekending,

  27. I'm happy you went with your wonderful family.
    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the pictures of C & A on the carousel. What beautiful girls. (S too)!
    Love to you all....especially the new side kick. :)

  28. Wow, looks like you had fun, I have to agree WDW is my favourite place on earth to be with family, hope to visit Disneyland one day!