A Video Tour of Our Room

I took video of our room which turned out to be pretty poorly lit, I’m afraid! I did a bit of editing, added a few flash photos and some music… it turned out ok. Definitely not an “art film,” but it will give you an idea of the accommodations we had at the Grand Californian Resort.
To view the video, click HERE.

Disney Store, Downtown Disney, Anaheim

Looking out from our balcony

Looking towards Disneyland

Can you see Space Mountain?


Heading Home

carpet in our room at Disney's Grand California

Can you spot the hidden Mickey on the carpet in our room?

Our flight was not until 6 pm and, with Don once again in meetings (continuing education, actually), I was left to my own devices until 3:30ish when we’d have to catch our bus to the John Wayne International Airport. I went on the power walk through Disney California and found myself accompanied by one of Don’s colleagues at Harborview in Seattle. Teresa was on her own due to a mix up in registration (for the meeting) so I offered to leave her my Disney Guidebook so she could plan out some time at the parks. It was a chilly morning – our breath was clearly visible – but one of the women was from Ohio and in shorts. It’s all a matter of perspective, isn’t it? An interesting note about being in the park before it opens: the Grizzly Rapids Run is completely emptied of water every night. Who knew?!?
I had decided that my last breakfast would be at Catal – they had a brioche French toast that sounded delightful. It was good, but not as good as the Mickey Waffle – sad to say! After breakfast, I went back to the room to pack up before the late check out (noon). The Bell Captain kept our bags for me in their holding room until we were ready to leave – most convenient! I had used up my 3-day Park Hopper ticket (sigh), so my day would be spent Christmas shopping in Downtown Disney.
I managed (somehow…) to accumulate several purchases and still had time before I needed to meet Don back at the resort, so I approached the Disney Vacation Club booth to find out more about the program. We had looked into it a bit previously and – of all the time share possibilities out there – I was interested in learning more. I whisked away on a tram (bliss! my feet were so tired!) to the offices and chatted with Bruce who discussed scenarios, answered questions and gave me a tour of the model units from the Grand Californian. I would dearly love to someday have a family reunion or do Christmas at Disney World (specifically, Disney’s Animal Kingdom with a view of the “Savannah!”) and buying into the Vacation Club would help bring that dream to fruition. Plus, it’s Disney and I can count on them to do it right. The prices seemed reasonable to me and the program is fairly flexible regarding destinations and “point accumulation.” Perhaps, someday…
I was once again whisked away in the tram and back to the Grand Californian to collect our luggage and Don so we could hop the bus to the airport. I had just enough time to dash back into Downtown and buy some huge soft pretzels for our plane ride home before the bus was to arrive. Don returned to the resort just ahead of the Disneyland Express bus. Our airport experience was uneventful – no pat downs or body cavity searches – and our plane was fully loaded before our scheduled departure time. I believe we actually took off a few minutes early. The charming toddler behind me didn’t kick my seat the entire time, so the flight seemed quick and we were once again in rain swept Seattle. Home again, home again – jiggety-jig!

Weee’re Heeeeere!

After staying up way too late, we got up way too early and caught the 7:05 ferry so we could catch our 10:30 Alaska Air flight to the HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH! Our flight was uneventful – which is a good thing in my book. I had a window seat and got a great view of Mt. Rainier as we flew past. (picture below)
We checked into the Disney Grand Californian and- with a little maneuvering by the desk clerk – we got a room with a partial view of Downtown Disney and Disneyland (without paying for an upgrade). We can see all three peaks from our balcony – Matterhorn, Space Mountain and Thunder Mountain. we also determined we could have a view of the Disneyland Christmas Fireworks! (turned out to be an obstructed view, but still could see enough to “ooo!” and “aaah!”)
Don had to go to a meeting almost immediately, so I went to the spa for a pedicure (purple toenails!) It cost about twice as much as I pay at home, but what the heck! I’m on vacation! Later, I explored Downtown Disney – it was crowded on a Friday night. Go fig! after scoping out all my options for dinner, I decided to eat at the Catal UVA Bar and had an amazing hamburger. The fact that I hadn’t eaten since breakfast could have been part of it, but I don’t think so!
When I returned to our room, I discovered the downside to our Downtown view – a musician was playing a keyboard very loudly outside until around 10:30!