It's Thursday and normally we'd be at home celebrating Thanksgiving with the family. And while some of the family is here, there's a few more that are still in transit.
Our cousin Avery is here and she's never been to Disneyland before, so everyone was excited to take her for her first visit. There were two options, either go on Thanksgiving Day or go on Sunday. Thursday would definitely be less busy and Sunday would be more crowded. As is got closer to the actual date, the forecast called for rain. Eh... that'll make it even less busy, though not ideal. We're still going to go for it.
Well we came prepared. Ponchos and plastic to come the strollers.
You did just watch the Hunchback on Disney+ didn't you Patrick?
Because of the hassle to get the plastic on not just this stroller but also Ian and Alli's, the trams were not happening. I wasn't going to fold everything up again and try to reinstall it in the rain once we got off the tram. Thank goodness we have umbrellas and ponchos for ourselves.
How's the weather? You know. A little dark, a little gloomy.
After a wet walk through Downtown Disney, we're at the entry gates. Last chance to back out. No? Alright then, let's do it.
Avery! Welcome to Disneyland!
It's rainy and coming down pretty good. There aren't many people here though, so that's a plus.
There's Ian and Alli. Hi guys!
You've got to get a castle photo. Nice and reflective.
But tell me how you really feel. Cold and wet? Yeah, that's understandable.
Take a walk through the center of the castle.
What's going to be Avery's very first ride? Nothing too scary, nothing too fast. She remembers that I sang her "it's a small world" when she was little, and even calls it Uncle Joe's song. Sounds like a win to me.
There was no line. Before boarding we were warned by the cast member who was loading us that "The seats are wet and there are a couple inches of standing water at the bottom of the boat. If you're okay with that, go ahead and board."
He wasn't kidding either. Theresa did bring towels to wipe down the seats, but the standing water couldn't be helped. If our shoes and socks weren't already wet, they were about to be.
Once we got inside the show building things were a lot better. We sang along to the songs, enjoyed the smells, and pointed out the different Disney characters.
Ian pointed out the sign as we floated by the exit tunnel. A couple weeks ago it was true. Today it's ironic.
Amid ponchos and umbrellas, we made our way over to the other side of the park. Mansion is showing a 25 minute standby wait. I think instead we'll get fastpasses and ride some other things.
Thankfully Pirates is a people-eater and only a 10 minute wait.
While the drops weren't that fun, and the darkness wasn't fun, we survived it.
Winnie the Pooh is fun one! I know Theresa and the kids enjoyed it years ago.
Once again we're greeted with wet seats and standing water. And it's inevitable that the lower 12" of everyone's jeans were soaked.
Are we sure this isn't outside? The rain rain rain came down down down.
Looks as if the rain has washed away Pooh! Normally he'd be in the middle of this giant wall of honey. Today we can hear his voice, but he's nowhere to be found. I know for the past few weeks at least he's been frozen. Perhaps he's off getting fixed.
I was really hoping that the rain would be in patches, but it's been constant. You go into the show building and it's a light rain, then come out the other side and get poured on.
Perhaps sugar will help things.
They're making some tasty treats.
The top hat Mickey looks adorable. Who is that just outside the window?
It's Santa! He's on the porch of Pooh Corner out of the rain, and there's no line to see him!
Santa to Ian - What would you like for Christmas?
Ian - I don't know yet.
Santa - Well it's only Thanksgiving. There's still time to figure it out.
Santa to Alli - What would you like for Christmas?
Alli - A pink sleigh that flies!
Santa - A sleigh that flies?
Alli - Yes. A pink one.
I'm not so sure Santa will be able to bring her that, but he might bring her something for transportation. And I guess because Santa hasn't been too busy, they got extra candy canes.
How about those snacks? Let's dig in! Avery got a rainbow Mickey cookie.
Alli loved that Minnie gingerbread looking rice krispy treat that they were making and wanted one of those. Ian wanted the man-eating wreath from the Haunted Mansion but refused to take any bites. He wanted to save it to eat while we rode.
Along with those, these Peppermint coated chocolate caramel marshmallow wands are delicious, but so sticky on your teeth.
Here we go Ian. Now you can eat it. That's a pretty good looking wreath. It even has a hidden Mickey on it.
Despite the rain and the holiday, enough people showed up that it's not a ghost town. Popular rides still have half hour waits. The pirates queue extended out of the entrance and to the bridge.
I was happy to have a fastpass to skip the standby line of Haunted Mansion. Avery wasn't too sure about the queue. Ian told her that he was very proud of her for being brave in the stretching room.
There were quite a few stops and starts as we moved through the mansion. Cast member came on the PA telling people to make sure there isn't anything sticking out or dragging along outside their doom buggy. I guess the ponchos are having an impact on operations too.
As luck would have it, Ian and I got stopped right in front of the gingerbread house. I was finally able to get a decent photo of it, though I wish the railing wasn't there in front.
With such a long time in one place, Avery was able to get more comfortable and enjoy it.
Hi Alli! Enjoying your Minnie treat I see.
It's still coming down. Thanks for helping hold the umbrella.
Waiting for everyone while they change out of wet clothes in an attempt to extend the day. It's only 11:20am and we're pretty soaked.
Alright, give me a smile for the camera.
Okay, now show me how you're really feeling.
Alli and I are still doing alright. Theresa and Ian have had enough and are ready to go home.
For now Avery is sticking it out.
Looking for another dry attraction. Tiki room?
We timed it well and joined the crowd as they entered.
We all sang like the Birdies Sing and Ian was even able to join in on the whistling portion. He's been practicing nonstop.
Everyone enjoyed the lack of rain and Theresa broke out a bunch of snacks for everyone to enjoy. Avery liked the birds so much that she watched it a second time!.
Megan is big into Christmas and so a stop at the Frontierland Mercantile was in order. Their whole shop has Christmas merchandise, including a wall of ornaments. There's so many great ones, but I wish they weren't so expensive! They're very detailed, but still range from $21-$26 each. Disney does have signs up though that if you buy 3 you can have them for $20 each. Add in my AP discount and that gets it down to $52 for 3 ornaments, a savings of about 33%.
Someone has found a baby Minnie.
When we have visitors, I always want to get a group picture of everyone in front of the castle. The rain was particularly heavy though and you can barely see the castle through all the umbrellas.
Ian, are you enjoying the weather?
Alright, time to make some decisions. The weather hasn't cooperated and everyone is wet and cold.
The group decided that everyone would have a better time if we headed home.
The ducks don't mind the weather. They can almost swim in all that pooling water by the curbs.
Just like before, we skipped the trams and opted to walk back to the parking garage. The kids were bundled up with the shades down, so it was nice and dark. Too much for Ian and he fall asleep on the walk to the car.
Well it was a memorable day to be sure. Avery enjoyed the rides we thought she would, it's a small world and the Tiki Room.
If I had to choose again, I'd probably take the crowds and the better weather versus the low crowds and poor weather. Especially with little kids. I might be able to deal with the inconveniences, but it's definitely a bit more stressing to the littles.