California Dreamin'

Ah, California Adventure. It's been so neat to see the evolution of this park over the years. I love the changes that have been made and what the park now represents: Walt Disney's arrival in Los Angeles and the start of it all. 

This year Freddy's family drove down from Palm Springs to hang out with us in LA which was super fun! His brother and sister ran around DCA with us, which was great so that I didn't have to go on California Screamin' alone (but if I had to, single rider line is totally worth it for that ride!). 

To start off our day, we took a tour of the Carthay Circle Restaurant. I first learned about this tour by browsing through the Disney Parks YouTube channel. I stumbled upon this video and immediately decided this was something we HAD to do on our next trip. Our cast member guided us through the restaurant, telling us about the history of the original Carthay Circle Theatre in Los Angeles where Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs first premiered, and showing us dozens of black and white photographs from Walt's early career days. The theatre was torn down in the 1960's, so it was neat hearing about how they had researched so many aspects of the theatre to ensure all the details were just right, like how the restaurant's interior was modeled after the original theatre with an Art Deco aesthetic. It amazes me how many little details Disney puts into everything that they do, making it all even more magical. This was my absolute favorite part of the day, and I highly recommend taking this tour on your next trip to California Adventure!

Photo of Walt with Shirley Temple.

Photo of Walt with Shirley Temple.

They keep lilies in the center vase to honor Walt's wife, Lillian.

They keep lilies in the center vase to honor Walt's wife, Lillian.

Once we finished that, we headed straight for Cars Land! When you walk in, it feels like you're Lightning McQueen and you've just entered Radiator Springs. Ka Chow! Freddy always has 2 motives when we are in Cars Land: 1. Go on Radiator Springs Racers (his fave ride); and 2. go to the Cozy Cone Motel to get some churro bites. If you haven't had these before, you're missing out. They are bite sized churros drizzled in a liquid chocolate sauce...aka better than a regular churro!

After our pit stop in Ornament Valley, we headed off to Paradise Pier to tackle Toy Story Mania and California Screamin' before we made our way to Goofy's Sky School and Ariel's Undersea Adventure. 

For lunch, Boudin Bakery is always on the menu. I first encountered their sourdough bread bowls in San Diego when I was young, and the rest is history! I'm overjoyed that they have a location inside DCA, and I'm obsessed with their clam chowder; I order it every single time.

When we're full from lunch and feeling a bit run down, it's usually a good time to get in line for the musical production of Aladdin! It's a tradition that we look forward to each time we go, and it's a great opportunity to sit down and relax as the talented cast takes you on a journey through Agrabah!

Another one of my favorite spots to explore is the Animation Academy and the Sorcerer's Workshop in Hollywood Land. It's a place where I find so much inspiration and joy. If you haven't checked it out, give it a shot! You can try your hand at animation, take a tour of the Beast's library, or even have a conversation with Crush! Sweeeeet. Totalllyyy. 

As evening settled on Paradise Pier, it was time for the World of Color show to begin! If you have seen this show before, you may be familiar with a pre-show game that involves guests as a way to pass the time. It's basically a game of "simon says". Here's how it works: Keep your eye on Mickey's Fun Wheel, and memorize the color sequence and match it as quickly as you can. You earn points for being speedy and memorizing the sequence correctly each round. At the end of the game, it tallies up your points and determines the winner of that game (remember: you're playing with all the other people waiting for the show to start, too). The winner gets to control the lights on the ferris wheel for 30 seconds. Pretty cool, right? Freddy and I played this game last year with our friends and none of us won. This year, Freddy and I battled each other, and guess what...I have the "fastest thumbs in the west!" I won the game! Here's the video of me controlling the lights, and believe me, it was 'wheely fun'!

World of Color is one of my favorite shows, and it's always first priority to get fast passes right when the park opens to ensure we get a good viewing section. For the Diamond Celebration, they paid a special tribute to Walt Disney and all of his accomplishments. It was a beautiful, honorary performance featuring many of his beloved characters, most importantly, Mickey Mouse!

It was a fun-filled day with family and I can't wait until our next trip to the Disneyland Resort!

Next week I'll be showing you all the merchandise I picked up on our trip. Until then, have a great weekend!