So basically our entire month of December revolved around our road trip down to Disneyland with some extended family. I apologize in advance the the amount of photos in this blog post…I’m sure it breaks some sort of blogging etiquette rules. Let’s just say it makes up for the months that I didn’t get enough.
Before we left we picked up a 1/4 grass-fed cow from a local(ish) hobby farm and filled our little deep freeze full of meat for the next year. This was our first year purchasing meat like this, and the kids loved spending a bit of time exploring the farm (seriously our dream to have a little farm like this).
The following week we left for Seattle on the Wednesday evening (we thought it would be nice to just make a 2.5 hour head start for the following day). We took 3 nights to drive down to Anaheim, and didn’t take the scenic route or make any great stops along the way apart from food, bathrooms and gas. We had a goal in mind (also not sure how we did this trip in a tiny SUV in 2016….so much stuff!!). I made the kids jump on beds and swim at every hotel to get some of their energy out.
We arrived on the 8th, hung out until our house was available, then grabbed groceries (and went to Target of course). The 9th we relaxed and went to Downtown Disney that evening for dinner.
The 10th was our first day at Disney! We hired Sarah Sido to photograph only us 5 for the first 6 hours of the day starting at the house at 7am (the rest of our extended family joined us for a bit at the end of our time with her). We haven’t gotten our photos back yet, but when we do, I will share! I so sadly lost a chunk of photos and all my video footage from that day, which really sucks (I THINK I lost one of my memory cards, and I’m still hoping it turns up somewhere). We stayed for fireworks that night and then went to California Adventure the following day (we didn’t last quite as long that day, two in a row really wears you out).
On Wednesday we did a bit of shopping, and swimming! I was excited to try out my dad’s new Go Pro Hero 7 and try my hand at underwater photography.
Thursday was Disneyland again. We went for magic morning and left our house at 6am (the kids were not impressed at being woken up so early…even though they wake us up at 6am every day). We did the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique and Character dining that morning as well, which was pretty awesome. The boys got to make their own light sabers that day…so there were many battles throughout the park. We stayed until probably 8:30pm, our earliest Disney night, but we were pretty done!
Friday was our last day at California Adventure, and we had lots of fun hitting as many rides as we could. I may have overdone it on Guardians of the Galaxy, haha.
Saturday was beach day and then Sunday was our last day at Disney. We stayed for Fantasmic and Fireworks on our last day. It was shockingly not super busy that day and we were able to get on a ton of rides. We also decided to get max pass that day, so save ourselves some time on the rides.
Monday was a packing/relaxing day, then Tuesday morning we started the trek home! We first stopped in Sacremento and stayed the night there, as we have some family who lives there. Then we split up, my aunt and uncle decided to stick with us up the Oregon coast, and my dad headed straight home with my nephew. We took a short drive to San Francisco (where my 5 year old lost his first tooth!) and spend half a day and a night there. The next morning we headed to Gold Beach in Oregon, which was super sweet. We stayed at the Pacific Reef Hotel and ate at a really awesome little restaurant called The Barnacle Bistro.
The following day we made lots of fun stops (not including bathroom breaks and gas, haha). We first stopped at the sand dunes, then the Sea Lion Docks in Newport. Then we headed up to the Tillamook Cheese Creamery before the last hour to our hotel in Seaside, right by Cannon Beach.
Before we started the 6 hour drive home, we spent a little over an hour at Cannon beach with the kids exploring. So thankful it wasn’t raining pretty much our whole drive home and at all our stops! The kids did amazing on the whole trip and the Oregon Coast is so beautiful and so worth the drive!
When we got home, it was December 22 and almost CHRISTMAS. So we tried to quickly get into the Christmas spirit and enjoyed even more family time and lots of turkey and games. On the last day of the year, my mother-in-law arrived to stay for a week visit (she’s the best)! Such a fun end of the year. I am so excited for 2019. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
(And YES I’m continuing my 365 project this year, I’m sure much to my family’s dismay 😅 )
Alyssa Kellert is newborn, birth, documentary family photographer + film maker as well as a birth doula, and is located in Greater Vancouver, BC Canada. Head over to her Facebook page to see more of her most recent work at facebook.com/alyssakellert, or follow her on Instagram @alyssakellertphoto. You are welcome to email at firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact page on this site for more information!