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Short Vacation Update

July 18th, 2014 at 07:39 am

A sure way to vacation success is to go in with low expectations. Big Grin

Background: In-laws invited us to So Cal for a week. We were wary about the heat and crowds and spending all that time with them, but in the end it turned out pretty well. Unfortunately FIL had an injury and they didn't end up really doing anything with us. ??? So it was kind of weird (to go on vacation with someone and then never see them), but WE certainly had fun.

Disneyland: Glad we didn't spend our own money to confirm that the kids are over it.

My parents took me to Disney once. I always kind of appreciated the magic of vacations like that because they were so rare. Living a 6-hour drive from Disney I certainly know many people who go many times a year and seem to enjoy it. But, dh and I are just so bored with it, and our kids even moreso. (I think they have both been 6-8 times? The older one a couple of times more?). As dh said, "We don't care enough about anything to actually wait in line for it". We saved that for Wednesday and the day started out pretty well but it was so crowded in the afternoon and evening. We gave up and left early. For the most part it was way better than expected and we did all the "long wait" stuff early on before there were any lines. Phew.

The kids still LOVE Legoland and the in-laws did join us for a few hours.

For BM's birthday we went to Six Flags. Best day of our week. We could not believe how not-crowded it was. There was only one ride BM could not get into (didn't want to wait 45 minutes and the ride shut down when he decided to do it last even if the wait was long), was the new one. We told him we will come back in 5 years and everyone will be bored of it. It was surprising how short the lines were on everything else.

So, we decided that he did 11 mega coasters for his 11th birthday.

Oh, and the Six Flags by us is just awful. They won't let you carry fanny packs on the baby rides or set your drink down while you ride. Ridiculous $1 lockers by every ride where you have to put your hat and sunglasses. Rolleyes Dh and I both worked at an amusement park in high school and we were just kind of annoyed about everything last time we went to that Six Flags, in comparison. Looking at the website this one seemed to be about the same so I Was resigned to being the "stuff holder" all day. In the end, they had very few rides that requested lockers (BM saw one or two) and they still let you set your hat and drinks to the side for the ride. It's a small thing but it makes a big difference in enjoyment.

Compared to the other crowded parks, Six Flags was heaven. Big Grin LM and I had a surprisingly enjoyable time though we didn't do many rides. Dh was a sport and rode most the BIG rides with BM. I am just getting too old for that stuff. Dh feels the same way, but he is a trooper. Next time we need to find a friend who is brave enough or tall enough. We could not for this trip. (His best friend is way too short to ride anything!)

I am guessing we spent $500 for the entire trip. Will see where we end up. Six Flags was entirely paid for by credit card rewards. In-laws paid for our other park tickets. We treated MIL to a $100 meal for her birthday dinner but she got us $100 Disney dollars (going to a timeshare talk). So I think we made out pretty well. We could have made the Disney day free, with the disney dollars, but decided to splurge on a ridiculously expensive lunch. $90 for four. IT was okay. If we had spent real money we would have been pretty disappointed.

Dh and I also made it to one show. A podcast one of his favorite comedians does. There were some other $10 shows but the timing didn't work and these are all shows that come to San Francisco at times. So, those will have to wait for another time.

I can't believe we were gone for 5 nights. I can get pretty cranky when we are away from home too long, but I think I am mellowing with age. I seem to travel better. But still very happy to be home! LM too seemed to have a surprisingly good attitude but this morning he told me he was happy to be home and he was going to hug the floor all day. That is usually how I am. Big Grin

Edited to add: $500 in expected costs is for food and fuel.

3 Responses to “Short Vacation Update”

  1. CB in the City Says:

    I have only been to Disney World once, but my kids have gone numerous times with my ex's family members. I always took my kids to Six Flags instead. They really liked it a lot better -- they were all about the rides and couldn't have cared less about the entertainment venues and all the Disney hoopla. Add to that lower prices, shorter lines, less distance to travel -- no brainer.

  2. MonkeyMama Says:

    Yeah, my oldest child is completely bored with the Disney rides (he is the thrill seeker) and the younger one seems to be quickly following suit. I am like a 5-year-old at heart and so I enjoy it on some level. But, having been about 15-20 times, I think it does get boring.

    I have no idea what my kids love so much about Legoland... I had originally predicted, the first time we went, that they would outgrow that place at age 5. But they have certainly been there far less times, so maybe that is some of it.

    I personally think Disney prices have gotten *ridiculous* over the years. But people go and it's crowded. Supply and demand. I get it. But I think that plays a lot into our feelings about it.

  3. Marie @ The Money Template Says:

    I really want to take my daughter to Disneyland hopefully by next year. For now, we are still saving for our next vacation trip.

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