Sunday, December 16, 2007

Week of A Million Dreams: Sunday (12/9/07)

As those of you who read the blog know, we've been anticipating our trip to the Disneyland Resort for a long time. Some of you have even begun to grow a little weary of it (hi, Tom!). If so, the next week or so will not be your cup of tea. I'll be writing up a pretty extensive trip report on our expedition to Southern California - both for your enjoyment here at aka pastor guy and for the folks over on forums. (In other words, I'll be cross-posting these trip reports at the forums on the Passporter website... but I'll be writing them primarily for the blogging audience.)

We left Fresno around 2 pm on Sunday afternoon - leaving our evening NewLife @ Night worship service in the capable hands of Aaron Kellar, our worship pastor. We also left behind Shari's black shoes & the Christmas presents we were going to exchange with my Aunt Nancy & Uncle Richard, but that's really not important right now.

Snow had fallen on the Grapevine the night before... but Sunday was clear & sunny, so the roads were fine. (For those uneducated in the vagaries of California highways, the Grapevine is a stretch of Interstate 5 that connects the Central Valley with the Los Angeles area while going over a 4000 ft pass. The name comes from a time when it was a winding two-lane road that was infamous both for the twists & turns and for reducing cars to broken-down hunks of metal.)

We stopped for dinner in Santa Clarita & ate at the Wood Ranch BBQ & Grill - an upscale BBQ place that had amazing ribs. (The rib sauce was very sugary & sticky but delicious - Shari described her first bite as "dessert.") We'll definitely stop there again.

The traffic going into L.A. wasn't too bad (it was a Sunday evening) and we made good time to our hotel, the Candy Cane Inn. We had a standard room, which would have been great if we hadn't borrowed a Buzz Lightyear tent & sleeping bag from Braeden's best buddy, Canaan. With the tent set up, the room was a bit tight. On the plus side, the room was clean & comfortable, the hotel towels were actually thick (as opposed to feeling like large baby wash cloths), and we were directly across from the breakfast area & only a few doors down from the shuttle pick-up point.

I'll get into this more in later posts, but the Candy Cane Inn is within walking distance of the parks - about 9-10 minutes. Still, we NEVER made this trip, instead relying on the very nice bus that left for the parks every 1/2 hour. (One of the drivers was particularly attentive of Collin - helping us get him in the bus, asking "where is my little friend?", and generally making him smile when he was sad to leave Disneyland.)

After getting the family settled, I drove down Harbor to Lincoln, took a right & found a Vons, just as the posters on had told me. (Thanks, guys!) I loaded up on milk & some other perishables for our mini-fridge & high-tailed it back to the hotel. The parking spot I ended up with become our spot for the week - two spaces away from the shuttle bus pickup point, making it a perfect "garage" for the stroller.

No surprise here: Braeden had a really tough time going to sleep, what with all the excitement about going to Disneyland the next day. (I had the same problem when I was young... oh, heck, who am I kidding?! I had trouble going to sleep, too!)

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