Monday, June 24, 2013

The 36 things project: Item #10 - Mom's Last Wish Trip

This year I set a goal of 36 things to do for my 36th year.  Some are meaningful, some are mundane, some are silly.  Follow along as I check things off my list. 

10.  Take my "Mom's Final Wish" Trip
My mom had a final request and that was for my brothers and my dad to take her grandkids to Disneyland soon after she passed.  We haven't done it yet and it makes me feel guilty.  I know that wasn't her intent, but I can see her shaking her head in heaven and saying, "Make it happen...  there will always be a reason or excuse, that right now isn't the ideal time."  My brother and I feel strongly that we need to honor her request, so this year we will set a date and go.

The back story:   My mom was nervous about traveling overseas when we were little kids, so she made a cassette tape of her words of wisdom, in case something happened.  She stumbled upon the tape 10 years ago, and thought it was still worthwhile.  She added to it then and one of the last things she said, was that her final wish was that we use the "fun money" she had in an account and go to Disneyland as a family.  She always wanted to go to Disneyland with her grandkids and see this magical place through their eyes.   After a year of trying to coordinate schedules, my brother and I decided, we needed to make it a priority.  I wish my dad and other brother could have been there and I know my mom was with us in spirit.  My mom knew what she was doing, my family needed this time together, and for me I needed this time with my brother.
My brother and I toasted my mom over a Dole Whip and when we sat singing along in the Enchanted Tiki Room, I couldn't help but think, "Mom, would have LOVED this."   It was my favorite part of the trip
Here is the crazy thing about Disneyland, we have been there over 60 times, and yet we did things on this trip we have never done.   Such as the Enchanted Tiki Room, and shooting at the shooting range. 
I loved that AK helped Mr. Man navigate and told him, "I'm a Disneyland Professional Dad, here's where we go." 
AK got to meet some more princesses on this trip and I love that she asked, "Princess Tiana, What are you cooking for dinner tonight?" 
We went on Splash Mountain, which I have only been on once, but never completed the ride.   I am technically, banned for life from this ride due to my stint in the Disneyland Jail. 
AK and I slipped away from the group to meet up with some princesses.  We have never met Ariel, she has been our elusive Princess.   (FYI, the new "Princess Pavillion" or whatever it is called, has THE WORST lighting for photographs.) 
We made a special request while standing in line to see if Ariel could come and meet us.   AK was in shock when she saw Ariel.  
AK told her that we have a beautiful saltwater pool that she can come and swim in anytime.  They parted ways after taking a "Fishy Face" photo.  
We went into the nearly vacant giftshop where two Disneyland employees doted on AK and helped her pick out the perfect souvenir.
I couldn't resist a photo in our favorite spot. 
Then we met up with the group and went to a fancy dinner.  My mom would have insisted on the fancy dinner, and I'm sure she was checking out our manners from up in heaven.   We talked about the best part of our days and then talked about my mom.   We talked about how there was nothing more important to my mom than her family, and how she wants us to spend time together.  She wants us to be friends. We toasted her memory and then ordered 2 desserts each.... because that's what mom would have wanted.
After dinner we watched the fireworks show and squeezed in a few more rides.  It was so fun to spend quality time with my sweet husband and darling kiddos.  I couldn't resist taking this selfie of us at the park.
At the end of the day my little ones zonked out, Mouse Ears and all at the hotel. Best Day Ever.   The best thing is that we woke up the next day and did it all over again.
Thank you mom!


Tammy said...

i think i would have loved your momma! thanks for sharing! :)

Brooke said...

Good for you!!! Love the two dessert part - and of course, the visit to the Tiki Room (my boys loved that as toddlers ;)