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This post is about a month late (hence all the halloween-themed photos) and is bursting at the seams with photos... consider this your fair warning. It was important to me to write about it simply because I wanted to document the memories-- no matter how late I'm getting around to doing so. This trip meant so much to me for so many reasons and it will forever hold an extra-special place in my heart.

We used our third anniversary and Billie's first birthday as one big, really good reason to take off and spend some time in the happiest place on earth. AND IT WAS SO MUCH FUN! Taylor and I tend to get a little antsy if we stay put for too long-- it had been a second since our last trip so this Disney adventure seemed to have come right when we were needing it the most (I know, I know, I say that about every trip). I know a lot of people don't really see what the big deal about Disney is, but let me tell you, when you let yourself slip into a love of Disney, it becomes an obsession real quick. I'm obsessed, I'm obsessed, and I don't care who knows it!!

I took a whole bunch of photos on my camera during this trip but I ended up deciding to only share the photos I took on my phone in this post (partially because I'm too lazy to edit all of the ones I took on my camera but also partially because this post is already jam-packed full of photos and so far I've only added the ones from my phone...) so enjoy.

We spent a total of four days in the park and we could have probably been there for another four days and felt like we still had things we wanted to do. This was our first time visiting during the "haunting season" so it was extra-fun for us to go and see all of the cute halloween decor and eat allllll the halloween-themed treats. We're a little sad that some of the treats were seasonal, but I guess that will just give us more of a reason to go next year with our fingers crossed that they'll bring it back just for us!

We spent our first day there with two of my very best friends from high school, Jenn and Jillian. It was a rainy, gloomy day and, surprisingly enough, it ended up being the busiest day out of all the days that we were there. When we were heading to the parks we were thinking, "Oh! Good thing it's raining, that means it probably won't be very busy today!" BUT, alas, I think everyone else had that exact same thought and it was packed. But we utilized our max passes and the rider swap well and made sure we got to ride all of the rides we wanted to ride (and we even rode a few that weren't on our radar to begin with). We also consumed most of the foods we had on our "must eat" list. I've got to say, though, I've never EVER seen the parks as packed as they were on that gloomy, rainy October day.

Billie got exceptionally good at hijacking our snacks. We couldn't even be mad about it either because she's so darn cute. She'd get real sassy if she saw us eating anything without sharing (she must get that from me haha). I mean, I get it, I do-- especially considering the fact that it was basically her birthday trip so she had every right to act like a total princess. All joking aside, however, it's so fun now that she's getting older and we get to share experiences like eating delicious foods and going on cool rides with her. We took her on a bunch of rides when she was three months old but she obviously didn't have much of an opinion back then. This time around was really cool just because she was actually interacting with the rides and the disney experience (when she wasn't sleeping, that is). 

We've had people ask us why we even bother taking Billie to Disneyland when she won't even be able to remember the experiences she had there and our answer to that question is this: we take her because we will always be able to remember the experiences we shared there. And it's moments like this, when it was just Billie and I sitting and saving a table near the cozy cones while we waited for Tay to bring us food, that I want to wrap up in the prettiest wrapping paper and tuck away in the safest place in my mind so I'll be able to remember and revisit that moment for years and years to come. She was so happy, so giggly, and so content just sitting there with me and I couldn't help but to be overwhelmed by the simplest kind of happiness. I can't wait to tell her all about the adventures we shared together before the time that she can remember.

One of my favorite, favorite halloween treats was the slow-burn mac and cheese from the cozy cones! Holy heavens above was it delicious. It definitely had a little kick to it but in the best kind of way. Plus, it was one of the cutest little snacks we ate while we were there roaming the parks. Disney does SUCH a good job with it's theming and presentation. 

Another favorite treat were the memory refreshers from Bing Bong's! There were so many different flavor choices that it was almost a little overwhelming, so Tay and I each got one and we shared between the two of us (we would have shared with Billie too if she hadn't of fallen asleep haha).

We were so proud of how well Billie did! She adapted so well to the crazy Disneyland schedule and napped in her stroller throughout the day. She remained happy and content for the majority of the time too... as long as we shared all of the fun snacks we got. We are so lucky to have such a good, good kid. She makes it possible for us to still adventure, even as parents.

We didn't get any cute photos of the three of us in our cliche matching family shirts at the park because it was so cold and rainy the whole first day we were there (so we never took off our sweatshirts), but we managed to snag a couple of last-second photos together in the mirror of our hotel once we'd returned for the night. They're certainly not the most "aesthetically pleasing" family portraits, but they sure do make me happy (thanks to that little cheese-ball baby of ours).

We spent our remaining three days in the park with our BFF's, the Hansens (Blake, Ariauna, and Charlie girl)! It was so much fun to be there together. It actually worked out really nicely to be in Disney with friends who also had a baby. We would take turns watching each other's kids when we went on the bigger rides and then our babies entertained each other while we waited in line for the baby-friendly rides.

The Halloween decorations adorning the parks were so fun to see-- especially because I'm such a Halloween lover. They do such an incredible job decking out for the various holidays they celebrate at Disney. And all of the Halloween festivities certainly did not disappoint.

One of my all-time favorite rides during this time of the year is (easy to guess) the Haunted Mansion! Taylor had never before ridden on it with the holiday overlay (the Nightmare before Christmas) that they put up from Halloween until Christmas but he was certainly pleasantly surprised by it. He never understood why I loved that ride until he saw it all decked out for himself. It's SO GOOD during this time of the year!

If you have kids (or one kid, or any kids) who aren't tall enough to ride on the rides with a height requirement, you should definitely utilize the rider-swap opportunity at Disneyland. That's what we did when we went with the Hansen's and it made it possible for us to go on all of the big rides even though we had a couple of babies with us. You basically get a fast-pass to swap places as you go on the ride and it works like a charm. Tay and I got a couple of fun "couple" moments because of this (thanks Yauna and Blake for hanging out with the babies sometimes so that we could go on rides together).

I'm running out of words already but I'm definitely not running out of photos yet. But it really was such a big blessing to get to spend a few days in the parks with my very favorite people in the whole world. There's never a bad moment when you're immersed in the magic of Disney.

Billie really was such a trooper. Each night when we'd get back to the hotel she'd be fast asleep in her stroller, worn out from the day's adventures. She's so delicious when she's sleeping. Her perfectly round cheeks framing her slightly puckered little lips and the way her tiny limbs rest sprawled out in every direction... she is an actual angel and everything about her melts me.

Our last day in the parks just so happened to also be our third wedding anniversary. I guess you could say we celebrated all of the "major events" this year inside Disneyland (I'm not mad about it one bit). We took things pretty easy that day, too (other than starting off the morning soaking wet thanks to Grizzly River Run). One of my favorite moments was when Tay and I were sitting on a bench outside of the Soarin' ride with the two babies while Yauna and Blake were riding it. Taylor was laying in my lap, the babies were cooing and staring up at us in contentment, the sun was shining, and all was right with the world. Those are the kinds of moments that make life oh-so-sweet, if you ask me.

Our special way of celebrating our anniversary (other than the entire trip haha) was making a dining reservation at the Blue Bayou-- a place I'd daydreamed about eating at since the first time I rode the Pirates' ride back when I was sixteen. Little Billie kept herself busy while we waited to be seated by roaming around the waiting area and waltzing up and down the stairs repeatedly.

The meal itself was a little chaotic due to the fact that we had to desperately try to keep everything out of Billie's reach to avoid her throwing everything on the floor... but aside from that, it was a really lovely experience (lol). The "vibe" inside the restaurant is just really cool. It's crazy to see boat after boat filled with people lazily float on by as you're eating your meal-- they'd go entirely unnoticed if I wasn't looking for them, too. It was especially neat to cross something off my bucket list that has been there since the first time I visited Disneyland. Taylor makes all my dreams come true! (Sorry for the extra cheese hahaha.)

At this point I've had about enough of my own words. So just enjoy the rest of the photos I wanted to share sans-words because trying to come up with enough words to share along with all of these photos is actually very exhausting and I'm over it. 

This was such a perfect trip. It brought with it lots of smiles, lots of laughs, lots of really delicious foods, and memories that we will cherish for a lifetime. Maybe Disney seems a little overrated, but the magic within its walls is something I don't even have the words to describe. Maybe we're "extra" for being so in love with Disneyland... but so be it. I freakin' love that place.

Until next time, Mickey.


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