So it goes a little something like this. We’re having out usual Friday night – G&Ts at the newest hip bar in town, watching a really cool up and coming band. Not believable? Ok, fine. We’re at opposite ends of the couch in our pjs, eating too much, watching The Walking Dead and my phone rings. It’s my friend. I have a bit of a phobia of talking on the actual telephone since the advent of texting. So I confess I did take a wee moment to decide if I should answer. Upon thinking something bad must have happened I decide I should. Imagine the guilt of ignoring it to continue stuffing popcorn down my throat and she needed my help? She greets me with the bad news that disaster has struck her upcoming trip to Disneyland Paris with her husband and two sons. Son number 2 has chicken pox. There’s an issue with their travel insurance and it’s going to cost a fortune to switch the dates so unless I go along with Tom in place of husband and son 2, she will be going to Disneyland with son 1 alone. I should note before you read on that son 2 is fine, and was fine at the time – neither up nor down, just unable to travel. Just fine.
They leave Monday. In 2 days!
What a dilemma! What a quandary! What is one to do? I mean, I want to help a friend in need of course, but to not go to work for a couple of days and go on a paid for trip instead? It really is a lot to ask! But I sucked it up and took one for the team and Tom and I dragged ourselves along for the ride (pun very much intended).
Check out some of the fun we had. Obviously I haven’t shared any pictures of our friends but they were there, promise. I didn’t just go ‘cheers for the free trip, we’ll catch you for the shuttle bus home on Wednesday’. Honestly!
We had such a blast, I honestly couldn’t fault it. Except maybe the temperature, but I won’t hold that against my friend. Other than that though everything about it was amazing. We were there at the coldest time of year so of course we needed a few extra layers, but it meant no queues for anything. The staff were great, the food was great, and seeing how excited the kids were about literally everything was just amazing!
I also realised that the actual travelling aspect was a lot easier than it has been for us as a family in the past, when it was basically all about tactics – divide and conquer being the most recently tried (and often failed). Tom’s at an age where he is able to entertain himself and can happily sit on the plane or a bus for some time before getting antsy. So, luxury number one of the trip was sitting and READING on the plane while Tom watched a movie. An actual book (sigh). If they’d turned the plane around there and headed back after an hour I’d have been a happy girl. So it’s made me feel a lot more confident about our family holiday this summer knowing that Tom will be a doddle travelling and we can focus our energy on protecting everyone’s eardrums from Lois. Also knowing that our trips are only going to get easier is quite a nice thought (not that I’m wishing time away – you kind of stop doing that once you realise how fast they’re growing).
So back to the trip. What can I say. We went, we tried just about every ride or experience suitable for a 4-year-old. Which was a fair whack. We didn’t manage to stay up late enough to watch the fireworks – 10pm each night – come on Disneyland! But the kids, and us grown ups had so much fun during the day nobody actually wanted to stay up too late as we were so tired.
Apart from the free trip, my super organised friend had also paid a tad more to be in the closest hotel so we didn’t have to get the shuttle bus each morning, and ensured that we had a load of vouchers for meals in the various restaurants in the resort. I’d say if you’re thinking of going that’s such a good idea if you’re able to afford it as it means when you’re actually there you don’t have to pay for anything, except the toys – and be warned, the toy shops are strategically placed so there’s literally no getting by them.
In saying that they did have some good budget friendly options. For example in the Lego Store there’s a pick ‘n’ mix type area where you can fill a cup up with bricks and just pay for that. So much cheaper than buying any of the boxed sets. Also, thankfully Tom is still very interested in the cheap light up toys. All of which were broken by the time we came home, but hey, they kept him happy!
Oh, it also happened to be my birthday whilst away so as if she wasn’t awesome enough my friend organised a wee cake, got Minnie and the gang to sing Happy Birthday and managed to capture my embarrassed, spotty, make up free face on camera too. Thanks L!
We spent a great couple of days together the four of us, and it was great to have a bit of quality time with my wee guy too. So a huge thank you once again to L! And to son 2 😉
For anyone thinking of going to Disneyland I say do it. It’s definitely on my list of places to visit again. This time with the whole family. I might even pay for it.