Sunday, September 12, 2010

6th Surprise

The Friday before Ten's birthday started out like any other day: up at 6:15, waffle & yogurt for breakfast, dressed/hair combed and off to school. At 11:15, however, her day took an unexpected detour when she was summoned to the office and told to take all her things. Her classmates told her she was lucky because she got to go home early...they had no idea.

Ten was surprised to see us, and a little miffed that she was about to miss out on chicken-patty-on-a-bun for lunch. So, it was with a hint of skepticism and a healthy dose of resignation that she asked, "Are we going home??" "No." "Then where are we going?" "Hmm. Well, Daddy & I thought maybe we'd go to Disneyland." She couldn't get her backpack off & get in the car fast enough.
Once we arrived and Uncle Kev got us all signed in, our first stop was City Hall to get Ten an It's My Birthday button. I love the birthday buttons: they write the birthday person's name (and sometimes age) on it and all day nice Disney Cast Members will extol birthday wishes...and often give special treatment. Best of all, it's free!

The day began as it usually does in Tomorrowland despite the fact that Star Tours was closed (good- I'm looking forward to almost getting to somewhere besides Endor in 2011) and so was Space Mountain (not good- it's Ten & I's favorite, and they're just "themeing" it for Halloween).

Ten & Jeff started with the Rockets, and while in line for Buzz Lightyear, Jeff overheard someone walking past say that they had just gotten off Space Mountain. I was sent to investigate. Amazingly, it was true, and I jumped right in line. Good thing too, because they closed the line about 15 min after I got in it, and Jeff and Tenley were only allowed to go because I was holding our places!

After scoring our ride on Space Mountain (she got to sit in the front because it was her birthday), we hit the Autopia (where Derek, Shulmia and Jason went to heroic lengths to get Ten the "red Suzy" car because it was her birthday) and Nemo Submarine Voyage. It was then that Ten brought joy to her Dad's heart by saying that she'd like a snack and to "maybe do the lightsaber thing".

Now if you've never seen the Jedi Training Academy, it is waaay cute and the kids love it. Some Jedi come out and choose 20 or so Padawans from the audience who get to wear Jedi robes and wield lightsabers while they teach them a simple sword fight combo...then Darth Vader and Darth Maul show up and they get to fight them. Awesome- the trick is getting picked because there are 20-30ish spots and usually 50+ kids vying for them at each show.

We figured Ten had a reasonable chance: it was the last show of the day, she looked cute....and she had The Birthday Button. She got picked, thereby making all her Geek Dad's dreams come true: his little girl was a Jedi!

...and she was taking on Darth Vader!!

The Force was strong with her- she won, but afterwards said that she thought that "Darth Vader took it easy on me."

Having defeated the Dark Side, we trotted off to Fantasyland where she rode the Matterhorn and got her face painted.

Once painted up, we got on It's a Small World. Ten decided to work on her geography skills by trying to guess each country. Some times she did well...and other times we get this: "Look Ten! Cowboys! Indians! Farmers! Where are we??" "Facebook!!" Both hilarious and sad.
As we were waiting to get off the boat, Jeff announced "Aunt Beth and Uncle Bill are going to meet us at the exit" They had shown up to purchase something for Jeff's Mom, and came and found us to say hi. Tenley promptly talked them into going on the Tea Cups with her.

Aunt Beth and Uncle Bill said good-bye to us after the Tea Cups, and we continued on to Mr. Toad, the Carousel, Big Thunder, Winnie the Pooh, Pirates of the Caribbean and the Jungle Cruise. Somewhere in there, we zipped over to First Aid to get me some Advil before my head exploded, and were then seduced into dinner by the smell of fried chicken from the Plaza Inn.

We made it over to California Adventure with just enough time to ride Soarin' Over California (birthday button = "of course the birthday girl can sit in the top row") before that park closed.
One very very tired little girl dragged herself through the World of Disney store to pick out a souvenir, and then almost passed out on her Dad's shoulder waiting for the parking lot tram. She was actually asleep before we got to the freeway- not surprising since she'd been up and on the go for 16 hrs!
The Dad and I tumbled into bed as soon as we deposited Ten in hers. It was a good Disney Day: not too crowded and not too hot/cold. But more than that, it was a great family day: a good surprise, a happy little girl and no angst from anyone.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Tenley's Fortune

Chinese food for dinner. Read Tenley's fortune to her and she says, "I don't like that fortune. That cookie should mind it's own business."