I have waited to write this post because I wanted to have time to do it justice, but I am accepting that there is never enough time…
…so I’m just going to do a quick intro, then caption a bunch of photos and say,
“We played hookie for a week and went to Disney!”
It was a fantastic, last-minute, unexpected (but always hoped-for!) event. Grammy and Grandpa came with us (thank you; we loved being with you!). We pulled all the kids out of school to go. The timing just worked…T was free because he’s not yet 3; H was easy because he is still very content to sit in a lap or ride in a stroller; the girls are young enough that being out of school is fine (allowing us to go when the crowds were very minimal); and although there was rain (and rain, and more rain!), the reality is that we do fine in the rain. It’s the lines and heat that get us, and both of those were driven away by the drizzle.
First, a few memories that I don’t have photos for…
(1) The hailstorm on the way down. Holy moly! Kudos to my husband for driving safely through that! And kudos to the kids for rolling with it. It was so loud they couldn’t even hear us explain what was happening. Side note: the manufacturer of our sound machine should add a “hailstorm” setting next to “whale call” and “ocean sounds”, because it put T and H to sleep in seconds!
(2) The hotel we stayed in en route. We entered the lobby during “happy hour” and descended on the buffet like a herd of locusts. The manager came over and played with the kids, brought them cookies from the vending machine (“since the fresh baked ones we’re making aren’t ready yet”, she told us), and upgraded us to a suite with no extra charge. The kids were so excited about having a bed in the same room as a TV they went a little bonkers and were jumping on the mattress. T was so excited at all the hoopla, he exclaimed between happy bounces, “This is awesome! I love Disneyworld!” . . . Ha! I loved hearing that! We could have just driven to the local Marriott and he would have been totally thrilled. : )
(3) The rides at the parks. There were too many kids to juggle to get the camera out during most of the rides, but oh how we loved those roller coasters. E did space mountain with her dad. Both girls did thunder mountain and splash mountain with dad and me (while Grammy and Grandpa took the boys on a train ride). And T loved the kiddie roller coaster. He would have gone on the bigger ones if he had a few extra inches. Oh well. Next time! (Note to future travelers: they insisted that each child have an adult with them on the rides because E is not 7 yet…thank you for braving the roller coaster with us Grammy and Grandpa! Also, ask us for details on the fast pass and baby friendly “rider swap” program if you’re planning a trip…)
(4) The video I accidentally made, but will never share, on the way home. I tried to film a short clip of the kids at a mall food court, but accidentally neglected to turn the camera off. So what I actually have is a 40 minute audio tape of the 6 trips to the mall bathroom we made with the older 3 kids. (Heaven help me, it was one of those “I have to go again” days and the lines were long and…anyway…it’s an awesome audio of the conversations we had about “what was your favorite part of the trip” and “I loved this” and other priceless memories from the week, interspersed with lots of horrific bathroom sounds. What are the chances?!
And, of course, the photos:
Hard to choose which ones to share…The kids LOVED meeting the characters. And we all just loved being together. Here’s a random scattering:
I’ll post a few more photos in a future post so you can see T as the cutest beast ever (cast in a short skit with princess Belle…here’s a preview..).