We got home late, late Friday night…or early, early Saturday morning, depending on whether your a “glass half full” or “glass half empty” kind of person. (Personally, I’m a “if that’s all the water you wanted you should have just stooped down and drunk straight from the tap” kind of guy.)

Our drive time was extended because of a detour caused by the San Bernardino fires and just as we caught in the flood of gamblers returning from their Fabulous Las Vegas™ Weekends on the way down, we got caught in the flood of gamblers heading off on their Fabulous Las Vegas™ Weekends on the way back.

The girls held up remarkably well given all the delays. They are good little travellers. In fact…can I just take a moment to gush about my daughters?

The older they get and the more their personalities emerge, the more I love them. They’re not only great kids, they’re great people. People I would choose to spend time with even if I didn’t have to.

But I was honestly a little worried about this trip. We’d taken plenty of trips as a family of four, but this was our first as a new family of three. I was afraid that, with no real opportunities to take a break from each other, by day two they were going to be sick to death of me, tired, and homesick. Even the best little kids can get out of sorts when they’re out of their element for an extended period of time.

But I underestimated them. They were delightful companions from beginning to end and we had an absolute blast. And even when adults around them were losing their heads, the girls kept their cool.

Late one hot afternoon we were in the stand-by line for Soarin’ Over Calfornia when they started having problems with the whole center section of seats on the ride, cutting their capacity by one third.

Progress in the stand-by line slowed considerably while people with Fast Passes, which have priority, were flowing past us onto the ride. After about half an hour of moving very little, a lot of the adults in the stand-by line started getting surly. The people immediately in front of us and behind us were especially vocal.

After listening to all of the complaining going on around her, Emma looked up at me and said, “The line isn’t moving very fast, is it, Dad?”

“No, Emma. It’s not.”

She thought about it for a moment and then said, “That’s OK. It’ll be worth it.”

“Yeah,” ZoĆ« concurred.

I could have kissed them…and, in fact, I did.