Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Tradition of Happiness

If there is one thing us Knochs are known for, it's our dedication to annual traditions. At my grandparents house, we weren't allowed to touch the presents until after dinner (they called it tradition, the cousins and I called it torture). Every Thanksgiving at Pep's, the turkey I made in second grade is propped in the middle of the table. And every year for the past 21 years, between Halloween and Christmas, we go to Disneyland. 

So that's what we did this past Friday. I know what you're thinking, 'September 28 is not between Halloween and Christmas, Kate. Don't try to pull a fast one on us!' but what I mean is Disneyland's Halloween and Christmas season, which begins on September 19 and runs all the way through New Years.

This year was extra special though and not just because our annual tradition finally turned old enough to drink but because my Aunt Karen was kind enough to share her Disney Travel perks with us by gifting us some nights at the Grand Californian. Now being from Vegas, I've seen my fair share of the insides of hotels but let me tell you - this place fell in the top three. The architecture was absolutely stunning. Apparently I'm a big fan of the 'Craftsman' era - and thanks to the company of Pep, an avid HGTV watcher and Lisa, an interior design student, I had lots of detail pointed out that I would have never noticed. I felt like a queen (or in this case, a Disney princess).

Another perk of staying 'on property'? Early access to the park. That's right folks, by 8 a.m. we were in and on our way to Cars Land (the newest addition to California Adventure) and by noon, had knocked out more than half our rides for the day. Sadly, Indian Jones was closed but Cars' Radiator Springs Racer, Soarin' over California, Pirates and Space Mountain made up for it.

We packed the day full, making sure to keep the traditions alive within the tradition with a beer at lunch, an ice cream cone in the afternoon and of course, a reading from Esmerelda (post to come). We always wrap with a wine-filled dinner at Naples on the patio and topped the the evening of with a viewing of 'The World of Color' where I rediscovered my top three Disney movies (Little Mermaid, Lion King and Beauty and the Beast).

I realize that when I get older, the experience will become less for me and more for my own kids but in the meantime, it's all for us and I couldn't ask for a better tradition. Ears and all.


Lynnette Jones said...

I love your blogs they make me smile!What a wonderful tradition:)

Pep said...

It truly is my favorite thing to do with you.....