Golden State of Mind

I was super quiet on this blog for a while recently, but that's because I was in California! My husband and I flew out to the Golden State for a little over a week to experience some of the things we've heard so much about.

Pixar Pier and Pixar Pal-A-Roundl
Our first stop was 4 days at Disneyland. As a former cast member, I love all things Disney, but had never made it out to the original park. We stayed at the Paradise Pier hotel on property, and had park hopper tickets to both Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure. I was pretty amazed at how much they have crammed into such a small space here. They have multiple attractions that WDW doesn't have that I really enjoyed, like an Alice in Wonderland ride and a Monsters, Inc. ride. The Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout ride is my new favorite Disney ride by far. It was so much fun! I wasn't sure how I would feel about it since I love the original Tower of Terror, but I was pleasantly surprised. I finally got to see World of Color, which I have been hearing about for ages, and it really was as beautiful as everyone says.

I absolutely loved the Pixar Pier area and was super impressed by Cars Land. I do think a few areas of the parks were underutilized, but I find that to be pretty true with most theme parks. I was pretty disappointed because Sleeping Beauty Castle was still undergoing refurbishment. This had been going on since January and I had really been hoping the walls would be down by the time we got there, but no such luck. Overall we had a fantastic time, but I still have to say I think I like Walt Disney World better than Disneyland! #sorrynotsorry

The Queen Mary
After Disneyland, we spent a night aboard the haunted Queen Mary ocean liner docked in Long Beach. I was actually a little disappointed by this piece of the trip unfortunately. The ship was cool, and there were some areas where I definitely felt wrong and super spooked, like the isolation ward and the engine room, but I had hoped for more than what it ended up being. Also, the walls between rooms are super thin, and people were moving furniture in the restaurant above our room all night long. There wasn't much to do, and a lot of areas were closed off for a conference happening on board.

The gorgeous Hollywood Roosevelt
Finally, we headed to LA for a few days, where we stayed at The Hollywood Roosevelt. This hotel was everything old Hollywood glamour should be. The pool area was absolutely gorgeous, and we had a room with a balcony overlooking it. There was surprisingly less to do in LA than we realized, and actually flew through our list of must-dos pretty quickly! We did the Santa Monica Pier, Rodeo Drive, Griffith Observatory/The Hollywood Sign, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and saw Marilyn Monroe's grave. We also went to two amazing themed bars: Scum and Villainy Cantina (a Star Wars bar) and Beetle House (a Tim Burton bar) which were some of my favorite parts of the trip. On our last night, the cast of Criminal Minds actually had their series wrap party at our hotel, so it was fun getting to watch all of that happening from our balcony.

Mr. Mayor inside Beetle House
We also ate a lot of incredible food on our trip (yes, I did throw Keto out the window while we were away, but I'm back on it now!) and had a really amazing time. It was so nice to get away from real life for a while, even if we had to adjust to a new time zone to do it! Now we're looking forward to our next upcoming adventures, and I can't wait to share them with you here! Any guesses where we're going next?

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