Tuesday, March 15, 2022

2022 California Trip Bucket List Results

Eliot and I have had about a week to recover from our trip out to California.  I've really enjoyed looking back at our pictures and thinking about all the fun we had!  While Disneyland was the major highlight of the trip, we did a lot of other fun things while we were visiting!  You might recall that I actually had to separate my Disneyland and my non-Disney bucket lists because the list was getting too big.  I already filled you in on how our Disneyland bucket list went, so today I wanted to check in on my other one! 

Here's how we did on my 2022 California Trip Bucket List!

Melissa's 2022 California Trip Bucket List

See the Disney Princess Concert

This was such an incredible experience!  Unfortunately, not everyone else in the small theater shared our adoration of Broadway stars.  Disney Princess: The Concert was supposed to be more geared towards older kids and adults.  Much to our dismay, Elissa, Eliot and I found ourselves right in the middle of a bunch of unruly younger children- who spent most of the performance whining or screaming the lyrics, off tune as loud as they could.  We were also directly behind some Moms who thought this was their weekly wine & chit chat session and they talked through performances.  We really enjoyed the experience, and I got a few things from the merchandise booth... but I was definitely distracted from the show more than I would have cared to be.  (Eliot and I have our eye on tickets for the show in Massachusetts in April... stay tuned!)

See Hamilton

I was so excited to see Hamilton live!  Nori had seen in on Disney+ a few times, and Eliot had seen it once, but they hadn't really followed it very well.  (The music is pretty fast.)  I knew all of the lyrics so I followed along with the story perfectly.  The cast was brilliant and they made the show their own.  The audience really loved it, and it's clear that I wasn't the only one who had the soundtrack memorized.  It was incredible; I absolutely loved it and can't wait to see it again!

See Wicked

This is Eliot's favorite musical.  I had never seen it before, but I've obviously heard wonderful things.  I even knew a few of the songs.  I really enjoyed it.  I loved the musical and the backstory about how The Wizard of Oz went from another point of view.  I hope we can go see it again someday so I can soak in more of the story!

Look for San Jose Sharks Fabric at Joanns

This was a bit of a disappointment.  Rick had a brilliant idea to check the stock online, and none of the stores near us had the fabric I was looking for.  However, we still made our way to a Joann's store since Elissa had to go anyways.  I wish that I'd found what I was looking for, but at least I tried.  I guess I'll keep an eye online!

Look for San Jose Sharks Gear (Target or Local Sports Store)

We did get a chance to check out the Sharks gear at a local sports store.  There wasn't much, but it was fun to see gear somewhere other than the Tank!

Go Shopping at the Shark Tank

Of course, that meant Eliot and I had even more fun shopping at the Shark Tank.  We scouted everything out during the Sharks/Bruins game Saturday, then we bought our merchandise during the Sharks/Kraken game on Sunday.  We bought two Sharkie plushes, a kids Snoopy shirt that was on sale, a Timo Meier All-Star shirt for me, a few pucks, a sign for Eliot's office, a Sharks posters and nail decals and headbands for me.

Get a Mani/Pedi with Elissa

I really enjoyed our sister-in-law bonding time when Elissa and I got to spend a bit of time together.  This is only the 4th time that I've had a manicure and pedicure.  We both got gel manicures so our nails would last... especially with going to Disneyland that week.  I got a shade of bubblegum pink for my fingernails and she got a pretty forest green color.  We both had similar shades of cranberry for our toenails.  Mine was a little more pink and sparkly.  Our nails turned out great and we both had a good time!

See the Sharks and Bruins Play at the Shark Tank

This was our first game back at the Shark Tank since December of 2019.  It was refreshing to be wearing teal in a sea of teal instead of sticking out like a sore thumb wearing teal amongst black and yellow.  There were more Bruins fans at the tank than any other team I've ever seen... and they were loud.  Unfortunately, the Sharks didn't have a great night and they lost 1-3, but at least Timo Meier scored our only goal! 

See the Seattle Kraken (The NHL’s newest team)

We had a lot of fun at this game.  (More on that below.)  It was fun to see the Kraken play for the first time in their inaugural season.  The Sharks played much better this game.  We ended up winning 3-1 and it was a great atmosphere!  We even got to take a photo with our favorite mascot "SJ Sharkie" before the game!

Visit the Funko Hollywood Store

This was definitely a highlight of our trip.  I wasn't 100% sure what to expect and it completely blew my mind!  There were tons of giant Funko figures that you could take pictures with.  (I'll have to write up a separate post with all of the photos I took.)  Eliot and I went with Elissa and Nori before we went to see Hamilton and everyone had a great time exploring and taking photos.  I enjoyed seeing a bunch of Loungefly bags in person.  I also loved seeing the Stitch Shoppe merchandise!  Eliot and I behaved for the most part, and only ended up buying a few cute t-shirts and a few Funko Pops.

Visit the Disney Studio Store

This was about a mile down the road from the Funko Store and where we were seeing Hamilton.  We only had about an hour before we could enter the theater, and it would have taken us about 20 minutes to walk down and 20 minutes to walk back.  We thought about Ubering, but the one we ordered was 17 minutes away.  In the end, we ran out of time and it just wasn't going to be worth going all the way down to it.

Get an Ice Cream at the Disney Studio Store

Obviously, we didn't get an ice cream since we didn't make it to the Disney Studio Store.  Instead, Eliot and I got milkshakes at Shake Shack (which was next to the Funko Store) and Elissa and Nori got drinks from the Starbucks about a block away.

Check out S. Preston Art at the GardenWalk Anaheim

I don't really want to talk too much about this... Eliot and I tried really hard to make it work, and we failed.  The hours were pretty much opposite of our free time... the timing just didn't work out, and we did our best. 

Things We Didn't Expect to Experience

Meeting Elissa's Four New Rats

We didn't have time to experience extra things on this part of our trip since our days were pretty planned out.  However, there we had a few experiences that we weren't planning to!  The first was meeting Elissa's four new pet rats.  She had been hoping to get them, but she wasn't sure if she'd have someone who could watch them while we were at Disneyland.  She was able to work something out so she was able to adopt them a few days before we arrived!  Eliot and I enjoyed meeting Parmesan, Gouda, Romano and Provolone.  Parmesan was the only one who really liked being handled, so she and I got acquainted Saturday night after the Sharks game!

Visiting Happy Hollow Zoo

Something else we weren't expecting to do was to visit the zoo where Elissa is going to be working!  She had just gotten hired as a part time zookeeper at the small, local zoo in San Jose. We were only there for about 45 minutes before it closed one night, but we were able to visit all of the animals and get a feel for it.  (Side note: After our visit, she had a Zoom interview for a full time zookeeper position there while we were at Disneyland and she got that job the other day!  We're SO proud of her!!!)

Sharks Club Level

Another thing we didn't expect to do this trip was go to the Sharks Club Level.  Rick's season ticket holder representative hooked us up and gave us a pass to go down to the exclusive Club Level.  There, we got to explore all of the places to get food that you couldn't get upstairs.  We also enjoyed looking at all of the photos and memorabilia displayed.  The best part... the Cookie Nachos that Elissa and I decided to try.  They were enormous (we probably should have shared one)... but so delicious and worth it.

Visiting with Bella

Eliot, Elissa and I were hoping that the stars would align so we could see Bella for a few minutes during our trip.  (Bella is the family dog.)  She used to live with Rick and Elissa in San Jose, but now she lives down in Southern California with Nori.  Bella was going to be at Doggy Camp while we were at Disneyland, but Nori brought her up after we got to Anaheim Monday afternoon so we could see her for a few minutes first.  We cuddled and played with her while Nori and Rick unloaded all of the groceries and stuff from the car.  She also got a little walk in, and we had her drink a bit of water from the Starbucks inside since it was so hot that day.  It wasn't a long visit, but we were so happy to see her and she was over the moon to see all of us!

A California Sunset

On our ride from Wicked down to San Diego to catch our flight home to Boston, we got to witness the most beautiful California sunset.  I tried to take a few photos but they weren't the greatest.  Nori ended up stopping at a pull off so Eliot and I could take a few photos.  I actually video taped the sun falling below the ocean line and it was a beautiful moment and perfect way to end our time in California.

And there you have it!  All in all, I think we did pretty good with this list!  I won't lie, Eliot and I were both a bit disappointed that we weren't able to get to the Disney Studio Store or S. Preston's Art Gallery.  However, I am hoping we'll be able to do both of those things during our September trip out to California for the D23 Expo!  

I'm sure we'll also have a lot of other fun things on that bucket list... stay tuned!!!  °o°

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