Friday Five- Board Games for Preschoolers (That Even Parents Will Enjoy) #FamilyGameNight

If you have a preschooler my guess is you have played enough Candy Land to give you a stomach ache. For today’s Friday Five I am going to share 5 preschool friendly games even parents will like. Ones that we actually enjoy playing with the Goof.

5 Preschol friendly board gamesBefore I share our list, I do want to let you know that the links to these board games on Amazon are my affiliate links.

  1. Don’t Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus – We have only played this game one time at a friend’s house, but it was a lot of fun. It is appropriate for younger preschoolers (the game states age 3+ but some 3 year olds may need help understanding the game).
  2. Bendomino – We actually got a travel version of this game inside a kid’s meal one time. We liked it so much we purchased the full version. Even though the game says ages 6+ the Goof (almost 5) has no problem figuring out the game. It has also helped him with his numbers and matching as well as puzzle solving skills by figuring out which way pieces can and can not fit together. You can keep score or just try and make the most interesting shapes possible.
  3. Sorry – A lot of us have played this game as kids. If not, it is a lot of fun. The game includes decision-making, counting, and following instructions. This version of the game lets you add a twist with fire and ice tokens. The Goof likes to play this game 3-4 nights a week, and we have no problem playing it with him.
  4. Chutes and Ladders – Okay, so this one might not be the favorite of parents, but I will take it over Candy Land any day. Chutes and Ladders was around when I was little, so it brings back memories. It also helps the Goof understand that sometimes we have downfalls, even when we think we are on the top. One more great thing about this game is there are a ton of different versions, from Spiderman, to Mickey and friends, and more so you can choose one that fits your child’s interests.
  5. Battleship– This is another game that will take parents back. This game will take a little help for some preschoolers, but they really enjoy it. It also teaches strategy, counting, using grids, etc. We usually play in teams, one parent on The Goof’s team, and the other on their own team. The best part is teaching our kids the famous tag line from the commercials “You sunk my battleship.”

The Great Name Debate

Naming kids is hard. It is even harder when your husband suggests these names...

Naming kids is hard. I know sometimes we luck out and just have names we love picked out. Still, it is hard. You have to worry about if the name will fit them, if it sounds good with the last name, what nicknames may come from it, is it a name that will grow with the child, and so much more. Maybe I just take it all too seriously, but I worry about messing up and naming my child something I, or he, will regret.

With the Goof, we had 2 girl names we loved and one boy name. That was it. There were no other boy names on our list at all.

We made the mistake of sharing that boy name with someone, and a comment almost ruined the name for me. Pregnancy hormones and all had me upset over the dumbest comment. Thankfully, I got past it and when our son was born the name fit him perfectly.

When we found out we were pregnant in August, we still had our girl names…but one had become very popular with girls. A name that was not even in the top 200 5 years before was now in the 20. To add to it, we had zero boy names. This baby had better be a girl.

End of September we found out we were having twins. They both better be girls.

In my heart I knew Baby B was a boy. Something just told me he was. But I was a bit surprised to learn both babies were boys.

And here we are, 34 weeks with twin boys, and still lost on names. We have a few in mind, but none speak to us the way the Goof’s name did.

So daily we talk names, and Mike rarely makes a serious suggestion. And then, he made a suggestion one day that he just keeps bringing up, recruiting friends to help push for…

Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent….

Yep, my husband wants to name our babies Batman and Superman. I think the idea struck when we ordered some cute Batman and Superman onesies. Either way, he has now recruited our best friends and their five kids to push for these names.

What is kind of sad is, the names sound good with our last name. Still, I can not have my kids named after super heroes because I know their father would actually just call them Batman and Superman.

So secretly, I have a list, and I hope and pray when the babies come, their names will just come to us, or the two top names will fit.

If nothing else, the Goof has suggested we name them Mickey Megamort and Goofy Donald…

(I wrote this article the night before I ended up having the twins and never got a chance to publish it. We did have names we liked, but I did not want to say that was their names for sure until I got a chance to hold them, and see which name fit which child. In the OR during my c-section prep, I told the staff about the name debate, and the names my husband had come up with. So, when I went in to meet the babies, their name plaques actually had the names Bruce and Clark written above their isolates. When they got their official name tags, the nurses put a baby Batman and a baby Superman sticker on them.)

Show Your Artistic #DisneySide With An Art Party

*I received free product through Mom Select and Disney Parks to help host a #DisneySide @ Home Celebration. All opinions are 100% my own*

Throw an art party to show your #DisneySide

Last year, my family was lucky to be chosen to host a Disney Side at Home Celebration. Our theme last year was a Day in Disneyland and we had a blast! (You can check out that party HERE.) I was super excited to have another party this year. I decided to ask the Goof what he would like to do for a Disney party and he said art! I thought that was a fun and unique party to have, and something that almost anybody could do for any occasion or age so I thought it would be perfect for our multi-generational family.

Well, sadly, this was the winter of illness, so we had to keep putting off and rescheduling our party. We finally got a chance to have it, though not with the big guest list we had hoped. It still was a lot of fun to get together with a few family members and create some fun art.

I am excited to finally share our party with you (I had planned on getting this post live about a month ago, but ended up having babies…) and hope it inspires you to have your own art party.

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Disneyland 101 {Part 2} All About #Disneyland Park

While I finish off my blogging maternity leave, we are finishing our review of our Disneyland 101 series from last year.

Welcome back to our Disneyland 101 series. This is a series for those planning their very first trip to the Disneyland Resort, focusing on guests who are having their first Disney vacation ever. We are breaking down everything you need to know for your vacation. You can check out the first part of our series about everything from a general overview of Disneyland Resort to parking to bag check HERE.

Today we are going to go over what you need to know about the Disneyland Theme Park. If you don’t remember, Disneyland Resort consists of 3 hotels, a shopping district, and two theme parks. The newest theme park is Disney California Adventure, but the original Disney theme park is Disneyland.
There is a lot to know about Disneyland, so this is a very simple overview of the lands and some of the rides and other attractions in each land.

Disneyland Park consists of eight differently themed lands. Each land is very distinct. These lands are Main Street USA, Adventureland, Frontierland, New Orleans Square, Critter Country, Fantasyland, Tomorrowland and Mickey’s Toontown.
We will do a quick over view of each land discussing rides and a few places to eat, etc. We will cover entertainment, and other special events, etc in a future post.

Main Street USA
As you enter Disneyland Park, and go through the entrance tunnels, you will find yourself on Main Street USA. This land is themed after Walt’s memory of his hometown at the turn of the century (not the latest turn of the century- think 1900s). If you stand in the middle of the Main Street Plaza (near the flag pole) facing the castle, you will find City Hall to your left. This is where you will find Disneyland Park’s Guest Relations. If you are in need of a DAS (Dissability Access System) you will head in there. This is also the place to go to get First Visit buttons, Birthday buttons, and other special occasion buttons.
Next to City Hall are a set of restrooms. On the other side of the restrooms is the Main Street Fire House.
Standing in the same spot, behind you will be the Disneyland Railroad’s Main Street Station. This is one of four stops for the Disneyland railroad.
To your right you will find the Hall of Presidents and Great Moments with Mr Lincoln attraction.
As you walk down Main Street you will find shops, restaurants, and more. The Main Street Cinema shows Steam Boat Willie and is a great air conditioned escape.
As you come to the end of Main Street you will enter the hub of Disneyland. This is where you find the Walt and Mickey Statue. From here, you can enter the four major lands.
The first land you will see on the left of the hub is Adventureland. Before you even go under the sign (pictured above) you will find the Enchanted Tiki Room. This is where you can purchase a Dole Whip. The Tiki Room is a fun little show that you sit and listen to “birds sing words and the flowers croon” while enjoying the air conditioning. Be aware that there is a part where the room goes dark and there is thunder. This may scare some little kids.
As you continue into adventure land you will find Aladdin’s Oasis. This is where you can meet Princess Jasmine and Aladdin. You will also find the World Famous Jungle Cruise in this area. The Jungle Cruise is great, and filled with corny jokes.
You will find a few souvenir shops in this area as well. They have some great Adventureland themed items. As you continue through adventure land you will find the Indiana Jones ride. This is a fun, thrill ride. It is quite jerky and has one drop and blows puffs of air, etc on you.
Finally, you will find Tarzan’s Tree House. While the stairs may detour you, if you have children, this is a great way to get out some energy. You also get some great views of the park from up there. Keep an eye open for Mrs Potts from Beauty and the Beast as well.
Next to Adventureland is Frontierland. Frontierland is themed to remind you of the old west. As you enter Frontierland from either the Main Street Hub or from the walkway between Adventureland and Frontierland (just after you pass the Adventureland sign), you will first come to shops, restaurants and games. Be aware the shooting games cost extra.
The Golden Horseshoe is located here, as is the Rancho del Zocalo Restaurante (Mexican). There is actually a nice restroom behind the Mexican Restaurant that is usually pretty empty.
The Rivers of America are in front of you with Tom Sawyer’s Island in the middle. Here you can set sail on the Sailing Ship Columbia or the Mark Twain Riverboat.
If you head to the right you will find the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. This is a thrill ride. It has gone under a major refurbishment, and should be reopening early in 2014. It used to be jerky, but when I attended the Disney Social Media Moms On The Road event last year, they hinted it would be made smoother.
You can also find the Big Thunder Ranch BBQ and the Big Thunder Ranch (petting zoo).
If you choose to head left instead, you will pass several restaurants, and end up meeting the edge of Adventureland where it becomes New Orleans Square.
New Orleans Square
I am sure you can guess where this land is themed after.  Welcome to New Orleans. The first thing you pass as you enter this land is Disneyland’s classic ride Pirates of the Caribbean. You will also find lots of little shops and some restaurants. The Blue Bayou is located in New Orleans Square as well. This is the restaurant that is “inside Pirates of the Caribbean.” If you want to eat there, be sure to make a reservation. Standby wait time is often 30-60 minutes.
As you continue down the main path on New Orleans Square, on the right you will find the loading area to head over to the Pirate’s lair on Tom Sawyer’s Island. This is a great stop if you have children with a lot of energy. They can run around and explore on the island.
Between Pirates of the Caribbean and the shops and restaurants, and The Haunted Mansion, you will find the New Orleans Train Station. You can hop on the Disneyland Railroad here.
The Haunted Mansion is your last major attraction in New Orleans. This is another classic Disneyland ride. It really isn’t super scary, but there is a few parts that might scare some children.
Photo courtesy of Disneyland Resort
Critter Country

Walking past New Orleans Square you will arrive in Critter Country. This is where you will find Splash Mountain, the Davy Crockett Canoes, and every toddler’s favorite ride (or at least The Goof’s) The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. This is also where you will find Pooh’s corner. A great place to meet Pooh, Eeyore and Tigger. If you are hungry be sure to grab a bite to eat at The Hungry Bear. Head downstairs and sit along the Rivers of America to eat. There is also a good bathroom down there to dry off after Splash Mountain.

Let’s head back out to the Main Street Hub and stand at the Walt and Mickey Statue. Look straight at the castle and you will see a walkway to Fantasyland.

Fantasyland is probably what comes to mind when most people think about Disneyland. This is where you are going to find rides like Peter Pan, the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party (aka Tea Cups), Dumbo, Alice in Wonderland and more.
A few rides to take note of are Pinocchio’s Daring Adventure, Snow White’s Scary Adventure, and Mr Toad’s Wild Ride. While these are all great, iconic rides, they are all a tad scary, so just be prepared before taking your little ones on them.
A few other rides in Fantasyland that are fun for kids are Casey Junior (train), Storybook Canal, and of course, It’s a Small World. The Matterhorn also resides in Fantasyland (as well as in Tomorrowland).
When you are looking at the castle, you will see the main path through the castle, a smaller path to the right. This goes by Snow White’s Grotto and her Wishing Well. You can often find Snow White here. Next to that is the entrance to Pixie Hollow. These are all BEFORE you cross through the drawbridge into the castle.
If you look at the path on the left this is where you will go to get to the Princess Fantasy Faire. Here you can meet all your favorite Disney Princesses and also have story time with one of them. A fun little hint, this path on the left is a great place to get the shot at the very top of this post with Sleeping Beauty’s Castle and the Matterhorn.
Some people are confused on how to get to Small World. If you are at the Tea Cups and Storybook Canal Boats, look towards the Matterhorn and then turn left. Follow that walkway to get to Small World.
If you are looking at Small World, then you are ready to head to our next land
Mickey’s Toontown
If you turn right when you are in front of Small World, and follow that path, you will make your way to Mickey’s Toon Town. Before you cross under the bridge, look to the left. This is where you will find the theater for Mickey and the Magical Map. Just past that is the Toontown Train Station. The third stop on the Disneyland Railroad.
Cross under the bridge and you are in every child’s happy place. Toontown is a great place to go with kids. they can explore Goofy’s backyard, which is a play area. They can climb around in Donald’s Boat, explore Chip and Dale’s Tree House. There are lots of fun surprises. Of course, the best things are that this is where Mickey and his friends tend to be out for pictures. Mickey and Minnie have houses here. Minnie is often times at her house for meet n greets. Mickey Mouse is always in his house filming his next big movie. You can go get his autograph and have your picture taken with him there.
Toontown has a few gift shops and places to eat. It also has two rides. Both are a bit on the scarier side. Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin is not too bad, but the queue is slightly scary for some kids. The other ride is Gadget’s Go Coaster. This is a small roller coaster. The Goof went on it several times this last trip, until we put him in the front. Then he didn’t want to go anymore.
Let’s head back out to the Mainstreet Hub and head over to our final land…
If you are looking at the Castle, standing by the Walt and Mickey statue, to your right you will see the Astro Orbiters at the entrance to Tomorrowland. Tomorrowland is undergoing a bit of a transformation lately. Not the rides, but some of the other attractions. You will notice a presence of Marvel and Star Wars in this area.
The rides in this area are all pretty popular. Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, Star Tours, Space Mountain, Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, and Autopia are all quite popular. You will also find the Monorail Station and the final stop of the Disneyland Railroad in Tomorrowland. This is also where you can learn to be a Jedi, see the house of tomorrow (stop in for story time in the themed kids bedroom it is great), and build your own light saber. There is also an arcade in here.
Both Star Tours and Space Mountain are for a bit older kids and have height limits (we will have a separate post regarding height limits). Autopia has a height limit for being a passenger, and a separate height limit to drive your own car.  Finally, the Matterhorn also has a line in Tomorrowland. The Matterhorn is the only ride that is in two lands at the same time.
We have covered all of the lands in the Disneyland Theme Park. Next up…Entertainment and other things to look for in Disneyland.

Don’t forget about our current giveaway for a $100 Disney Gift Card. You can enter HERE.

Want to know more? Finish reading this article on our site!

Disneyland 101 {Part 3} Entertainment and Shows in Disneyland

When we left off, we had covered a basic overview of everything you will encounter before entering the parks (including parking lots, bag check, and more) and we had done an overview of the lands of Disneyland Park. Before we leave Disneyland and head over to Disney California Adventure, we need to cover all of the entertainment and little extras over at Disneyland.

Even if you are not a ride person, there is still a lot to do at Disneyland Park. From character dining, to shows, parades, and more, you could easily fill a day with non-ride attractions and events. I am going to try and cover everything, but Disneyland is constantly changing and adding new things, so be sure to check the Disneyland site for a current schedule of entertainment and events.
Since there is so much to do, I will try and break it up by category. Some things fit into two categories, so don’t be upset if another site has it under Shows and I have it under Events.

Fantasmic- Fantasmic is a show that takes place on Tom Sawyer’s Island and the Rivers of America. In this show you journey with Mickey into his imagination. The show includes music, pyrotechnics, hydrotechnics, animation and more. This show has some parts that may seem scary for some young children as Mickey has to battle villains, and even a dragon. The Goof loves it, but I know it is scary for some young children. Fantasmic only shows on the weekends during the “off-season” so if you really want to see it, be sure to check the park schedule and be there a night it is running.
UPDATE: Starting December 12, 2014 Fantasmic now has Fastpass viewing and Dining Packages similar to World of Color. Learn more HERE.Mickey and the Magical Map- This show just opened in 2013. It takes place in the Fantasyland Theater near It’s a Small World. In this musical experience, we go with Apprentice Mickey on a journey into a Magic Map as he tries to prove to Sorcerer Yen Sid that he is ready to be a mapmaker. You will experience lots of song and dance, and see some well-beloved Disney characters. We really enjoyed this show and I definitely think it is a must do. Be sure to check the park schedule for show times.

Jedi Training Academy- Head to Tomorrowland and learn how to become a Jedi. In this show, audience members are chosen to train to become a Jedi and fight the dark side. The show takes place several times a day, so check the park schedule, and plan on staking out a seat about 20-30 minutes before the show starts, longer if you are going during peak season.

Captain EO- Rumor has it this 3D show will not be around much longer. It is located in Tomorrowland and features Michael Jackson. You will find it back by the exit for Space Mountain.
UPDATE: Captain EO has closed. Currently the theater is used for sneak peeks of movies. It will be interesting to see what they put here next.

Parades and Fireworks
Disneyland fireworks are spectacular. You can best view the fireworks from Main Street USA and the surrounding areas. If you want to sit, you can stake out a table at either the Plaza Inn or the Jolly Holiday Bakery before hand. Just like Fantasmic, the fireworks do not happen every night during the off-season. Times also vary depending on time of year and other entertainment’s schedule. If the Fantasmic is going, the fireworks will almost always be immediately after the first showing of Fantasmic and before the second showing.
Disneyland has some great parades. Parades change themes often, but the last few years it has been Mickey’s Soundsational Parade (except during the Holiday Season). The parade USUALLY runs daily, sometimes 2 times a day, but this can vary depending on season and refurbishment and maintenance schedules. Be sure to check the park schedule to verify parade times. The parade travels down Main Street USA back It’s a Small World. Our family likes to sit at the Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe and either have ice cream or another snack while we watch the parade.

Diamond Anniversary Shows and More (UPDATE)

This summer (2015) Disneyland celebrates their 60th anniversary. They have a lot of great new fireworks and shows to help celebrate. I am currently adjusting to life with twins, so I am linking my friend Dawn’s article over on I Am A Mommy Nerd. You can check out all the magical happenings HERE. I hope to make it down this summer to check everything out myself.
Character Dining
There is currently only one character dining experience inside of Disneyland Park. This is the Minnie and Friends Breakfast at the Plaza Inn. My family has done this breakfast two times now and we really enjoy it. The food was good and there was a good mix of characters. Some that you can see other places in the park, and some rarely seen characters. I loved that we were able to get filled up on a ton of food, and get most of our autographs all in one morning. I love that you have more interaction with the characters as well.
Other Entertainment
You will find a lot of other entertainment around the parks. From the Dapper Dans, to the Disneyland Marching Band, and more, you will see lots of fun little entertainment around the park. Stop and enjoy it. The rides aren’t going anywhere. Unless your fastpass is about to expire, take a moment to enjoy the show.
Magical Extras
Did you know you can add a little extra magic to some of the attractions? Well you can.
Ask a Cast Member as you board the Mark Twain Riverboat if you can steer the ship. Not only will they let you (don’t worry, it is on a track) but you  get a certificate after.
First thing in the morning, head to the Main Street Station and ask if the Lily Belle is running. If so, you can see about reserving a time slot to ride on it. This is the special car named after Walt’s wife that was used for VIP guests. If you miss out on the Lily Belle, you can also ask for a tender ride which puts you right behind the engine.
If you ride Winnie the Pooh at night, when there is little to no line, tell the cast member as you load the car that you want to get Sticky Stuck. When it is time to get off the ride, your lap bars will stay down and they will send you through again. Just don’t let your toddler know that you can ask them to do this, or you will end up going 10 times in a row (I learned this one the hard way).
I have heard (but not tested it) that as you leave the Jungle Cruise you can ask for a map of the ride. This would make a great souvenir.
If it is not too hot, Disneyland still allows you to ride in the front of the monorail. When you get to the loading area, ask a Cast Member where to go to ride in the front. You may have to wait for the next train, but it is worth it.
Those vehicles on Main Street USA- yes, you can ride them.
If your daughter is really into Princesses, check out Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. They can get a Princess makeover from a Fairy Godmother in Training. (This one does cost extra.)

There is so much to do at the Disneyland Resort, you could easily spend a full week there, but most people find 2-3 days to be a good amount. No matter how many days you spend there, you will be able to find something for everyone in your group.

Next we will head over to Disney California Adventure. (After DCA we will talk things like fastpasses, and more) Stay tuned….

Want to know more? Finish reading this article on our site!

I Didn’t Disappear! I promise

Hey friends,

I know, I know. I redo the site, talk about a new series, say I will post more and then suddenly go quiet. Well, we had a little surprise recently. Our twins decided they needed to come early. So our twin boys were born at 34 weeks and 1 day and are currently in the NICU. Between delivering, recovering, and trying to split my time between the NICU and home (with the Goof) blogging is taking a bit of a back seat right now.

I hope to get back on here soon, and hope you understand. Until then, I will try to revisit some old posts that may interest you every now and then.

Have a Magical Day!


Friday Five- Spring Break Day Trips

I want to try something new on the blog. Friday Five. Just a list of five items with different topics each week. Then everyone else can leave comments adding to the list. I hope you like it.

5 day trips for Spring break or summer vacationSpring break is only a couple of weeks away for our area, and since it is probably the last time for a few months I will be feeling up to getting out and about before the twins come, I decided to try to come up with some different things to do with The Goof. I thought it might be fun to put together a list of day trips. Most of these are places you can find in most cities, or if not in your city, probably one close by.Continue Reading

Welcome To Our New Home!

Welcome to my new blogging home. Love Our Disney is now Love Our Crazy Life!

Love Our Disney is now Love Our Crazy Life

I am excited (and a bit nervous) to be able to share more adventures with you, and talk about more than just Disney. As I sad before, Disney will still be a huge part of this site, but I am excited to share other travel locations, tips and more.

While I get used to blogging on a different platform, I hope you will still come visit the site. If you happen upon my site via a pinned Love Our Disney post, or you find old Love Our Disney links that are broken, please use the contact tab to message me or get my email address. Let me know the title of the post so I can get it fixed. Moving after three years of blogging, there are a lot of posts for me to check and I want to make sure you are able to find the posts you are looking for.

I hope that you enjoy our new look, and that you will stick around as we share our crazy life. I also look forward to learning more about you, your life, and how you embrace the crazy!

Ch-ch-ch-Changes! (They are coming!)

Hey everybody! Remember shortly after Christmas when I wrote about if we still Love Our Disney? (If not you can read what I wrote HERE.) Well, the time has come for me to make some changes. Love Our Disney is going to be moving to a new site. Yikes! After 3 years of focusing on Disney, I need to feel like I can write about more, and as much as I have tried to expand, it did not feel right doing it under the domain and under that blog title. So, in the next week, you will see changes as we move to a new domain, and as I switch from blogger to wordpress.

If that last part confused you, don’t worry. Basically, for three years I have hosted this site on blogger- a blogging platform through Google. Now, there are people who bash blogger and say serious bloggers need to be on WordPress, but honestly, I have loved my relationship with blogger, and it was seriously the cheap option for me, as I did not have to pay for hosting, just for my domain. However, when researching the domain switch, I found the smoothest way to move the domain, and not lose all my old links, was to move to wordpress. So, I put on my big girl panties, and decided it was time to make the change. On top of that, wordpress has a lot more I can do with my site to make your experience unique.

So why the change? Continue Reading

Disneyland 101 {Part 4} Disney California Adventure

Hi friends! We have some changes coming to the blog this week, so in preparation, I am not doing any new posts this week, but I want to continue reviewing our Disneyland 101 series. I have also updated descriptions of each of the lands as there have been some changes in the last year. Enjoy and be sure to check out the entire Disneyland 101 series HERE.

Hey friends! We have been going over all the things you need to know for your very first Disneyland vacation. I could probably go on for years about Disneyland and find new stuff to talk about (well, heck, I have been blogging about it for 2 years almost), but we have been going over the things a newbie would want to know.

We already talked about things you will encounter before entering the park, an overview of Disneyland, and entertainment in Disneyland. Now we are going to head over to Disney California Adventure and help you know a little more about the different areas there.

Disney California Adventure opened in 2001. We honeymooned in Disneyland and visited it in October of that year. Boy has it come a long way. (Seriously, back then it was not even a full day park.) Now I could easily spend a few days in DCA without heading over to Disneyland. With additions of Cars Land, Buena Vista Street, and so much more, DCA is a full fledged, multi-day theme park all on its own.

Today we will cover the lands/areas of the park. Kind of how we did the first day we talked about Disneyland.Continue Reading