When I was pregnant with my oldest daughter, Krista, I always dreamed of the day I would take her to Disneyland with me. I thought, if I have this much fun as an adult, I can only imagine how much fun she would have. As soon as she turned one, I took her on her first visit (I would have probably taken her sooner but my husband wouldn't let me). From the moment she set foot in that magical place she became a Disney fan just like mommy, but I soon realized that visiting the park with a little one was different. I had some figuring out to do! I know some people might feel overwhelmed with the idea of taking a small child to Disneyland but trust me, once you overcome the fear and see that light in their eyes, you will not regret it.
Disney California Adventure has become my favorite park to visit with the little ones. Since it’s smaller, I can cover the whole park in one day and it has more rides and attractions for kids than I expected. I recently visited with my daughters, Krista and Sabina who are 5 and 2, my nephew Eduardo who is 22 months old and my mom, the #QueenSuperMama for a “Pre-K Family Day”. I found some really great gems!
We started our day with Disney Jr Live on Stage where they clapped and sang along. I was so happy to see how much all three enjoyed it and stayed entertained during the whole show while watching Mickey and his friends. We then visited Bugs Land, which is Krista’s favorite area. We always have to ride every single ride or else she won’t let us leave. From Francis’ Ladybug Boogie (my personal favorite) to Tuck and Roll’s Drive ‘Em Buggies, she can be there all day!
We then headed to Cars Land, since Eduardo is a HUGE fan. He got to say hello to Mater and Lighting McQueen at the Cozy Cone Motel and then rode Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters and Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree. He couldn’t stop smiling, it was really cute. But his favorite moment was definitely meeting Nick Wilde from Zootopia.. He ran to him and kept telling him, “I love you buddy!" That moment made our whole day!
Sabina loves her babies and princesses so she loved visiting Boo at the Monster’s Inc ride, Ariel’s Undersea Adventure with the little Mermaid, and was delighted to meet Elsa and Ana in-person while visiting the Animation Academy. This is a must see on your visit to Disney's California Adventure! This place teaches children (and adults) how Disney movies are made through drawing and animation workshops. Sabina and Krista had their creative juices flowing.
One of my personal favorite things about visiting Disney are all the delicious treats. My favorites are the churros, popcorn and the corn dogs. They're my must-haves every visit. For the kids, I opt for the carts with fresh fruit and the kid-friendly options on all the restaurant menus.
" You might still be telling yourself, 'they are too young to remember' maybe, but YOU will remember! That memory will live forever in your heart "
We closed our visit with the new Frozen Live Show at the Hyperion. It's the best way to introduce your kids to theater and musicals. All three kids were mesmerized by everything that was going on on stage and around them. They sang, danced and laughed out loud! It was definitely Krista's favorite of the day- she has not stopped talking about it!
A trip to Disneyland can be exhausting! So if you need to take a break during middle of the day to nurse, feed your child or you just want to relax for a bit, visit the Baby Care Center. It's complimentary and they offer nursing rooms, changing rooms, a feeding area and they also offer different baby-need products for sale. Trust me, this place has saved me from breakdowns a few times.
You might still be telling yourself, "they are too young to remember," maybe, but YOU will remember! That memory will live forever in your heart. For me, every visit has been so special, always fun, and always different. Living the magic through their little eyes, seeing their smiles and now seeing them having fun together creating memories that I will be able to share with them in the future makes it all worth it.
Don’t be scared Mama! If we survived with three small children, you can too!
Love ~ Paulina
Additional Super Mama Tips:
- Children under 3 years old are free at the parks, and Southern California Residents are eligible for a great offer now- A 3 day ticket for $149.00, less than $50 a day. Get your tickets soon!
-Mark Your Stroller : There are tons of strollers at any given time at Disney, make sure yours is recognizable as sometimes the cast members re arrange them to make more space for others.
-Snacks, Snacks , Snacks! : Make sure you pack enough snacks for the day, these will keep your little ones entertained during wait times. I usually take fruit, crackers, yogurt and popcorn, sounds like a lot but they have helped me avoid meltdowns and tantrums.
-Stay hydrated: Pushing a stroller and keeping track of children is no joke! So make sure you stay hydrated through out the day, take a big bottle of water for yourself to refill as needed and take some for your children as well.
-Wear comfortable shoes: Please! It's a day to have fun not to torture yourself.
-Map out the nearest restroom: I mean, do you want to be running around trying to find the nearest bathroom with a crying child? Just be aware of your surroundings at all times to avoid any accidents
- Have Fun! Just enjoy the day, become that kid you have inside, enjoy with your child just as much as they will, this will make your experience so much better! After all, Disney is the happiest place on earth.