Just returned from our family vacation at what they're now calling The Disneyland Resort. I used to go to Disneyland all the time when I was growing up in San Diego but I hadn't been but once since they added the new California Adventure park and the Downtown Disney outdoor mall. Both are awesome. We stayed at the also-new Paradise Pier hotel (I would love to stay the Grand Californian mission-style hotel but it would have almost doubled our trip cost). Our package included a 4 day "Park Hopper" pass so we could go in to both parks anytime we wanted, which is the way to go if you visit the Resort. Being able to go in the morning right when they open and take advantage of no lines and then go back to the hotel and sleep and go back in the evening is infinitely easier than trying to do everything in one day like we used to when I was little.

The only bad part was that they're still getting ready for the 50th Bithday of the park so it seemed like half the things we wanted to do were closed. No Space Mountain, no Splash Mountain, no Playhouse Disney show Allison wanted to see, etc. I wish they would have told us that up front.

One of my favorite moments was the teenagers behind me filming their ride on Big Thunder Mountain (formerly my favorite coaster at the park). They held their video camera and commented the whole time, which was fun to listen to. Then at the end I hear the kid go 'AAAHHHHH!' and 'AAAAAHHHHHH!' out of nowhere and he tells his friend "I did two aaahhhs there at the end so we could edit them in if we want." Beautiful. I love that these guys are making movies at home like that. I wish I could find it if they put it up on the net.

My other favorite moment was my new favorite coaster, Screaming, in California Adventure. It's all done with electromagnets so it's totally silent. It's got huge drops, a loop, and background music. My only complaint is that the restraint kept me from putting my arms all the way up. Still, no hands the whole time. Yee-hah.

All my pics from the adventure will soon be up on Flickr in my 'Disneyland 2005' set.