Saturday, April 26, 2008

disneyland 2008 "year of a million dreams"

a well deserved vacation for our family. i was a bit concerned that 5 days at Walt's would burn me out, but it did only the reverse and reeled me in. for those planning to do the same type of vacation, check into costco for great deals, we did the 5 for 3 days park hopper pass and stayed at a "good neighbor" hotel (within a 5 min shuttle ride to the resorts). i was very impressed with what Anaheim is pumping, after not having been there for about 15+ years my memory was this magical kingdom stuck inside a run-down town...but thats all changed. the surrounding areas of disneyland have done a great deal of improvements and they now have an awesome shuttle system called ART (Anaheim resort transit) that goes to and from your hotel and resort every 20 mins. so make sure you're staying at a "good neighbor" and you're hooked up.
we had intended to take things very slow and leave plenty of slack in the schedule to freely come and go to the i said we intended to do that, but instead we found ourselves putting in 12 hour days at the resort. i am no disney junky but there was plenty to see and do such as parades, live shows, characters, dining, and of course junky, but we will return in a couple of years for our second babe.
my daughter Alanna (4 yrs old) had a wonderful time. she loved seeing the princesses and was star struck. (more advise, if you have a lil' girl and you have the opportunity to do a character meal...go for "Ariel's breakfast", the food is rockin and the kids are in awe.) some other highlights were the parades and the MIckey Mouse club house show (also featuring handy mandy, little einstein's and such.) she didn't care too much for the indoor theme rides (classics) as they were typically dark, loud, and always something haunting...why is that? was walt tortured as a kid? her favorite rides were the outdoor open and airy old school fair type rides. she was granted to make a wish in the wishing pond and receieved several prizes (word of advise, never tell your kid "make a wish and it will come true"...she used that to her advantage, "i wish for a doll, i wish for a dress, i wish for...." and how can you back down after telling her that?!)
i had a blast. some things in my memory were just as magical when revisited and others where better left to be unvisited again (pirates of the caribbean! bore!!!)
our lil' 10 month old measured how our day went, she was the boss and we stuck to what she had to say.
my wife, having just recently been diagnosed with a rare disease called takayasu, also had a wonderful time. it is because of her condition that we chose to keep it slow and go for the 5 day pass...but we didn't keep it slow and by the end of the trip she suffered from it. upon our return her feet swelled and became very painful, and she felt systems of heart failure (water in the lungs, limited breathing etc.) so we took her to a doctor, they did the routine tests and found she now needs to be on constant high blood pressure meds, had to take diuretics, and closely monitored...and she is still struggling to find her ground. i love that woman! her willingness to fight against the odds, to put up with life's daily challenges, and all for the betterment of her family, i truly admire, respect and love her.
all in all we had a blast. a wonderful exhausting blast that we are still paying the price for (health), but it is a trip put into our dreams and we look forward to our return.

and p.s. doesn't that last shot just "crack" you up? - love it! (not the cheesy pun, but the photo)


Leisha said...

I'm sorry to hear that about your wife. It sounds like a fun trip and yes, that last photo. I totally cracked up :-)

Kim said...

Loving that last photo. So sad about your wife...sending her lots of love and prayers. She is a rawkstar. We were planning a trip to Disneyland this year...not sure if it is going to happen tho. Looks like you guys had TONS of fun.

Beck said...

We sure so miss you guys here in Midvale. Glad you had a good time in D-land. We'll keep all of you in our prayers. And I agree, Kate is one amazing woman! She helped me out during a rough patch in my life, all while struggling with her own health. You are a lucky man to have her in your corner!

Matich & Amber said...

hey duston..long time no blog. Just passing through! So happy to hear your fam had such a great time, gotta love disney and co.! We send our best to your cute wife. cheers.
- the matich family

duston todd said...

thanks to everyone for the sweet comments about my lady. she's doing better. it took her a solid week to recoup, but she's doing great now.
my best to you all!

Mckay Fair said...

Duston! Thank you so much, that's so kind of you to say, it means the world to hear it. I hope that disneyland was fun for you and your family, we miss you already in the neighborhood, things just aren't as fun without you coming to call my dad sexy in the middle of church :) And my mom said something about an open house? You'll have to give us details so that we can come! And, you'd better believe I'll work for ya, that sounds absolutely fantastic, and I'm so excited. Hopefully I'll get my car to start one of these days... haha, have an amazing weekend!
-Hillaree Hilleraa

P.S. Hope you feel better Kate!

Kim said...

LOVE the new header...and I think I almost ended my marriage today when I told my husband how much it cost to frame our 30x30...he just gave me THIS LOOK! GAH...anyway...totally framed ALL of the prints from your session today...and hung them up and they are BREATHTAKING...only took me six months! ;) Thanks again DOOD!

Jeff and Whitney said...

Hey! Im sorry to hear about your sweet wife. Im glad she is doing better. I love your Disneyland shots! I have never been there, but hopefully one day :-)