Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Every year the California Dental Association holds a convention right across the street from Disneyland.  Usually the Dental Residents at Nellis will be sent to a Convention somewhere to give a presentation.  This year, with the national budget cuts, all military spending for travel of this sort was suspended.  Nathan, however, convinced his commander that the residents were all willing to travel and stay at their own expense if they could attend the CDA's convention in Anaheim.  Frankly the worst part of this residency is that they do not let us use any leave.  So any chance at some time off is awesome.  We wanted so badly to go to Disneyland one more time before we move overseas but just couldn't make it work without a few days off.  So thanks to Nate's petitioning, they let the residents go to the convention for a couple days, and thus our Disneyland opportunity was born. :)  We took off on Wednesday afternoon and then spent the next 3 days at the parks.  Nate had to attend the convention for a few hours here and there, but because it was so close to the park he really didn't miss too much.  And last minute we decided to invite Grandma and Grandpa to come along!  We knew how much Grandma was dying to go and we thought it would be nice to have a little vacation with them before we leave.  It was also super nice to have some extra hands...especially during those times that Nate had to go work!  We are glad they decided to come along and we definitely made some great memories while we were there.  How can you not?!  Its the happiest place on earth!

Violet is, of course, not showing much excitement here...funny girl
This was actually taken at the end of 3rd day there...we were all a little tired (and cold!)

Thursday (our first day at the parks) was also Violet's 2nd birthday!  The week before Sawyer and I kept telling her that we would be going to Disneyland on her birthday.  She was so cute and talked about it for days straight, constantly saying "Disneywand fo my burfday".  So Thursday morning she woke up to a little party in our hotel room!  I could have just blown up some balloons and the girl would have been satisfied.  That's the first thing she went for.  But she did enjoy her other gifts as well.

Sawyer was such a sweet brother that morning.  He helped Violet with all of her presents and was excited for her.  We got him a 'Cars' shirt to unwrap so that he would have some fun too.

Daddy and Sawyer unwrapping her Tangled doll for her.  She was pretty excited about that gift.
I'm kinda mad at myself for not taking a better picture of this.  I think we got a video though.  Embassy Suites had an awesome 'made to order' breakfast every morning.  She picked out a sprinkle donut and we stuck a candle in it and sang Happy Birthday...she loved it!
Showing off her 'Happy Birthday' button that we got at City Hall...everyone that worked there would tell her Happy Birthday when they saw it.  So fun.  I was also very proud of myself for finding that Birthday Girl shirt at the Children's Place.  Saved me some time making one, which was my original plan

This girl constantly has a finger in her nose these days.  I'm gonna blame it on allergies ;)

Both kids actually did really well at the park.  They stuck around for the most part (was worried about chasing Violet everywhere).  They just had fun climbing on walls and hanging out in the stroller between rides.  I was surprised at how much easier everything was than I thought it would be. (Also we were able to get a 'stroller pass' because I was 34 wks pregnant...basically a guest assistance or handicap pass.  It allowed us to either take our stroller through the lines or in many cases, enter the ride through the exit and bypass the line.  Pretty awesome.  Definitely made a difference for all of us!)

Tarzan's Treehouse.  The kids love that movie so this was fun for them.

The kids LOVE the train.  So funny because it's not super exciting.  But I enjoyed sitting down and relaxing anytime I could!

We rode Dumbo together.  Love my little Birthday girl!
She wasn't a fan of wearing her Minnie ears.  Basically left them on long enough for a picture :)
My cute boy is looking so old lately!  He's never been a huge 'hat wearer' but he pretty much kept this one on the entire three days!  I guess he appreciated the shade it provided.  
One of my favorite pictures from the trip!
The Birthday Girl did manage to konk out for a nap every day in her stroller.  I just love when they get worn out from having so much fun!
I was worried about my body handling walking around for 3 days, being 34 wks preggo.  But it was actually not as bad as I anticipated.  I had a lot of help from my inlaws.  Ned pretty much pushed the stroller the entire time, and the stroller pass made a huge difference too!  I was definitely tired at the end of each day but I think everyone was!

Nate and I got to ride Grizzly River Run with Sawyer.  He LOVED it and was so cute the whole time. It was such a fun experience that I will never forget.  We got some great camera footage of it too with Nathan's new GoPro.  Sawyer then went back and rode it with Grandma and Grandpa afterwards.  Apparently he narrated the entire ride for the other people on the raft, since he'd 'done it before', haha.  Poor Violet wanted to ride so bad.  I guess we'll have to go back sometime!
These two are pretty good at entertaining each other (and teasing each other...but ya win some ya lose some, i guess).

Watching the Pixar Parade

CAR's LAND!!!!  Such an awesome place and JUST like the movie.  I even rode Radiator Springs Racers with my pregnant belly.  I didn't want to miss out on that one!  And I had heard it was a really smooth ride, which it was.  Glad I did it!  Sawyer overcame his fear of fast rides this year and pretty much went on everything we took him on.  Splash Mountain, Grizzly River Run, and Radiator Springs Racers seemed to make the favorites list.

Grandma LOVED taking Sawyer on rides as much as possible!!
Sawyer stood near this jet thingy for 5 minutes waiting for it to 'blow'.  He was so excited when it finally went off!

Eating at Flo's Diner in Car's Land

It was a super fun trip.  3 days is definitely a lot of theme parking, though!  We were all pretty pooped and sleep deprived when it was over.  But it was worth it for sure.  I'm glad we did it.  Now we are looking forward to taking our kids to Europa Park!  Germany here we come!


Sydney Marné said...

Okay I've seriously been laughing out loud for real the whole time I was reading this. The thing that made me laugh the most was probably Nathan narrating the Grizzly ride..........SO typical and hilarious and I can totally imagine how it went down. I just loved every bit of it and there are so many awesome/hilarious/adorable pictures!!!!! I can't believe how OLD Sawyer looks and that he went on so many rides including Splash Mountain! I am so impressed. I remember last year he would only go on Dumbo hahaha. So awesome. I'm glad you guys got to have this last Disneyland trip before the move and so great that Ned and Julianne could go with. I'm also glad you didn't go into labor from all that walking! Thank goodness for your stroller/preggo pass too....whew! Europa Park will be awesome too....I love that place!

Kristie said...

Great recap! I feel like youre in better shape than me--I don't know if I'm gonna survive 3 days of disney while pregnant next week, wish me luck!!

Sabine Schindler said...

Yay!! I'm so glad you got to go again, before you go to Germany. And especially that Grandma and Grandpa Larson had a turn to go with you guys! It's amazing to look at Sawyer and Violet, a year older, enjoying all the rides even more. How fun it must have been, to go with Sawyer on all those wild rides!!
I love Violet's birthday shirt and Mickey Mouse ears, even though she kept them only on for one picture. Ha!
And yay for that stroller pass. How much easier that made it for you! So glad you had a good time!!

The Thelins said...

SO FUN!! I'm really glad you were able to do it. Good job, Nathan (with the persuasion).