Saturday, July 5, 2014

Lesson 309: Magical

Happy Fourth of July!
I hope you are having a magical weekend, Readers!

Eloise has just returned from a family vacation in Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
It really was a magical experience.

If there is one thing I believe about magic, it is this:

Gotta make your own magic!

My sister Kenyan's family came along with the Fab Five,
and we worked together to make the magic happen.

My brother in law made, who works in the manufacturing business and travels often,
made the flight arrangements and planned and efficient trip.

It was Sam's first flight.

As soon as we left Pittsburgh and rose above the cloud cover,
Sam whispered, "I see Heaven."

He was just as excited on our return trip on the Fourth of July.
Sam, a fearless flyer, was hoping to see fireworks, but we had a day flight.
Instead he played chess against Mickey.

Florida sure was hot for the northerners.
Our hottest was 95, and the highest humidity reading was 88% during our stay.
Too humid for the cactus, but this one seemed to be thriving in the Animal Kingdom.

Look what I found hiding in this one!

The hubby was a bit of a prickly cactus himself a few times.
The Old Boy doesn't take the heat too well.
Here he is cooling off in the shuttle bus.  

He acclimated to the heat after a day, 
and enjoyed the food more than anything.

Here we are at our $32 a plate character lunch.

....and here's Sam's plate.

Here was Ellen's reaction after she peeked at the bill.

She just had to see again at the Crystal Palace, also.

 Our girl got a little lesson on savings accounts and vacation planning. 

Here we are, our party of 10,
upon entry into the Magic Kingdom.
Our first photo and we get photo bombed!

Sam was frowning because Jack, my 14 year old nephew told him we were
headed to meet the princesses.  Cinderella did not top Sam' list of
Must Sees.

My trio really enjoyed their experience.
Photos were easy as they were all smiles.

 Sam loved his autograph book and meeting the characters best of all.

Ellen anticipated the trip the most, 
as she had some memories of our first trip to Disney in 2006.

However, she became a player in her own Anxiety Game, 
and began to worry about all the possible disasters.
Been there.
Done that.

She faced her uncertainty with bravery and grace.
Ellen was able to calm her stomach and eat in the airport prior to the flight,
despite being surrounded by fear.

She even conquered Everest with Aunt Kenyan!

With a Disney coaster under her belt, she was a big shot
on the carousel.  She even rode no-handed!

 Natalie and Erik love carousels.

The entire party rode with them.

 The experience was extra good for Natalie and Erik.
Our entire family has the warm fuzzies because they were so successful.

Part of the magical formula was this pass.  

It gave them an instant Fast Pass at most rides and attractions.  It was not an automatic "Cut to the Head of the Line Because You are Disabled Pass."  They had to wait, too, but not as long, and not in a long, tight line.  They could wait comfortably under the shade of a tree, and we came back to the attraction at a scheduled time.

Here they are enjoying It's A Small World.

Here is Natalie with the Minnie she asked for distinctly and purchased with her own money.
She has not put it down in 3 days.  I just checked on her, and she's sleeping with it.

Given Erik's level of need, Kenyan took along a helper.
Erik would not have been able to get through the trip without Miss Candace.

She never left his side and seemed to put up with my family well.

I told her right before the plane took off on Day #1,
"I hope we are still friends on Friday, but I completely understand if we aren't."

 Jack gets the Brother of the Year Award for pushing his brother around day after day.

Even Sam took Erik for a spin,
albeit a bit jerky and fast.

With planning, accommodations, and a helper,
this vacation left our families with permanent smiles.

What did Eloise like best?

This ride for sure.

Other than that, it really was ALL GOOD!
My time spent with them is always my favorite.

 What did I take with me to read on the airplane?

These books.
They are my top summer book picks for chicks.

 What did I immediately download onto my kindle after the trip?

This one.
Eloise was flabbergasted at the attention to detail and had to learn more.

What did I leaf through at the airport news stand?

I tried to get my hubby to buy it, because there were a couple of articles I was very interested in.  I'll let you decide which ones were of the most interest to Eloise.  Message me your guesses, and I may or may not use them on a future blog depending on the content of your responses.  

So now that I've become a Seasoned Traveler,
(being in five airports in less than two weeks qualifies me),
I ask myself,

I've already decided when I'm returning to Disney World.
You're all invited.
I mean it.
I hate leaving anyone out.  

In seven years, Eloise will be turning 50, 
and so will Disney!

The park opened on October 1, 1971, seven months after my birth.

 I think that's a great way to celebrate my half a century, don't you?
Disney is always building new things.

"Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world." - Walt Disney

These were being constructed and we caught a glimpse of them while on the ferry.
They are right along the water.
Perhaps this will be the place I stay next time.
I have seven whole years to think about it.

To summarize, it was a trip best described as Magical (with a capital M).

Now that we've been home for six hours, some of that magic is beginning to fade.
I believe the other half of my personality said to my clan,
I'm sick of your sour breath (Hubby),
your gunky teeth (Daughter #1),
your smelly pits (Daughter #2),
and your bad gas (One and Only Son).

Go to BED!

Speaking of bed, it is time for me to go there, too.  It's late, but I was still too wound up from all the excitement to sleep.  The impending post vacation crash is coming tomorrow.  I can feel it.

Enjoy some more shots on this week's photo video.  You will see some nature shots and a parade of lamp posts!

Have a magical weekend,

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