Monday, June 26, 2006

Disney Report - Day 5

Back to Magic Kingdom!

We got a bit of a late start today for various reasons so we stayed moving the whole time while trying to do everything.

We tried finding more characters today but evidently the afternoon is not a good time! We missed some of the key players, but maybe next time! We did see all the princessed in the Cinderellabration show. It portrayed the crowning of Cinderella. It was very pretty and I got some great detail shots of the castle.

Jessica and Courtney rode Splash Mountain. It scared Courtney a little bit but I think she still enjoyed it. The girls played in Ariel's Grotto and got all wet, everyone (but me) rode Dumbo, the girls and I rode The Flight of Peter Pan. Then it was time for the fireworks again and the nighttime parade. Kirsten got this cute Mickey shaped ice cream cone which she really enjoyed!

More MGM pics

Disney Report - Day 4

MGM Studios!

Another hot, long day! Again, the highlights of the day included seeing the characters and the parade. I think Courtney's favorite was the Honey, I shrunk the kids playground. We also saw the Playhouse Disney show, the Little Mermaid show and the Beauty and the Beast show. They were all very entertaining and fun. The Mermaid show was a bit short but the effects were good. Mark and Jessica rode the Rockin' Roller Coster and the Tower Of Terror. They thought they were both pretty fun.

I think this day was the hottest and just about our breaking point! We should have taken a break back at the hotel in the middle of the day but we didn't!

The last show of the day was Fantasmic! And it was fantastic! The effects were very cool with a combination of water, lasers and fireworks. There were a couple of scary moments but it had a Disney, happy ending! We all enjoyed it very much!

Disney Report - Day 3

Animal Kingdom!

It was a bit easier getting to this park than Magic Kingdom so the day seemed to start on a less hectic pace. It didn't seem to be as hot either. Mark and Jessica headed to Mount Everest to get their fast passes while the girls and I headed to find some characters. We were at the front of the line for Donald and he was very funny! The girls got a kick out of seeing him perform. Then we watched the Pocahontas show. It was very good!

While Mark and Jessica went to ride Everest. The girls and I went on one of the animal walking trails. We saw various birds, some HUGE bats, a member of the ape family, some members of the deer family and tigers. I was surprised that we actually got to see any of them considering the heat and time of day. Then we went on the safari as a family. This was really neat. We rode in a jeep like vehicle and got really good views of various animals. Hippos, rinos, giraffas, a lion and some others I don't remember! After the safari, we saw the gorillas then came the one rain shower of the week. I really expected it to rain more and this shower lasted about an hour. It was not very pleasant after the rain stopped so I'm glad it didn't rain anymore!

Again, the highlight of the day was the parade. Disney really knows how to put on a show!

Disney Report - Day 2

Magic Kingdom.

We started the day with breakfast at Cinderella's castle. It was a wonderful way to start the day. It was a little hectic getting there, but that's another story! Anyway, we were announced as the Royal Webb Family and escorted into the dining room. We were served fresh fruit, assorted pastries, and fresh orange juice. Then we had eggs, french toast, bacon, sausage, potato casserole and some kind of pastry with cream cheese and blueberries. It was very good! I was nervous that the food wouldn't be that great but I was pleasently surprised! We met Cinderella, the Fairy Godmother, Mary Poppins, Wendy and Belle.

After breakfast, it was a hectic pace from one thing to another. First, we headed to Toontown and saw more characters, Minnie's house and Mickey's house and rode the train around the park. Then we headed back to the room for some down time. Mark and Kirsten took a nap. Jessica, Courtney and I spent some time at the pool. Then we went back to Magic Kingdom for the evening. We missed the afternoon parade but got to see the nighttime Spectromagic parade and then the Wishes fireworks show. My night photos are not that great. But I got a few good shots. I have to say the parades and fireworks are the best part of these parks.

Magic Kingdom was my favorite park of the three we visited. It felt very much like Opryland with the landscaping and music playing in the background. I wish we had spent more time here.

Disney Report - Day 1

WOW!! That pretty much sums up our trip! It was fun, exhausting, exciting, HOT, etc! There is probably more to tell than I could here, but I'm going to give it a try!

We left home at about 11:30 pm on Sunday night. And drove, and drove and drove! There was a point where I actually thought, "We are never going to get there!". It was like we were stuck in some twilight zone. But approximately 13 hours after beginning, we finally got there! We found our hotel, unpacked the car and sat down for a few minutes. We headed to Downtown Disney to check it out and find something for dinner. DD is the shopping district for all things Disney. It has the world's largest Disney Store, a Lego store, a toy store, a Pooh store, a candy store, a pin store, a Christmas store and a scrapbook store (very disappointing, BTW!). The Lego creations were very impressive. This picture is of a Lego dragon that was in the water. After browsing for a while we headed back to the hotel to get some rest for the next day.

Friday, June 16, 2006

3 More Days

Only 3?!! Well, I have gotten a whole lot of nothing done today! I've done some laundry and some organizing. The only thing fun I accomplished was this cute little altered clipboard. It is the small size clipboard. I have cut 4 x 6 pieces of cardstock and this is what we are going to use for the character autographs. Just hand them this and a pen! When we get home, I'll cut the cardstock into a tag shape to go on the page with the picture of them with that character. I'm so excited! This is the funnest thing I've done to prepare for this trip so far.
Minnie is on the front and Mickey is on the back. I haven't decided if I'm going to put ribbon all along the clip or not.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The countdown

Only 5 more days! Excitement is mounting here. Actually the girls are staying pretty calm, considering. We are using our refrigerator magnets to countdown the days. They love changing the number every morning. I think this is actually keeping their anticipation at bay.

I've done laundry today. I have gone throught their books and toys and pulled out all the Disney related items to take with us. I'm thinking a Disney barbie might be a good choice for Courtney as her souvenir. Out of her 20 (yikes) Barbies, only one of them is a Disney Princess. How can that be?

I have a thing about souvenirs. I'm not a fan of a lot of little things. We'll probably get postcards and pressed pennies. But I think one special souvenir is better than a bunch of little ones. I'm thinking of looking for a new purse/bag for myself. Jessica needs a new watch so that would be a good thing to look for.

Anyway, time to cook supper!

One step closer

Thursday we drove to Chattanooga for Jessica's college orientation. We left late because for a couple of different reasons and arrived there at about 12:30 am (they are an hour ahead of us)! We spent the night in one of the dorms there which was an experience! They (Jessica and her roommate) had to get up early in order to take some placement tests. If I had to do it over again, I would probably have stayed home, gone to bed early in order to get up early to drive down there. But that wouldn't have worked with Courtney and Kirsten, so I guess this was the best route! Man, I was exhausted Friday morning! I slept maybe two hours!

So we get up Friday morning, get them to the area for their test and then part company for the rest of the day. The students attended different orientation sessions from the parents. We finished up at about 4:00. All I have to say is - TOO MUCH INFORMATION!! This was all so new to me and Mark and Cindy (Jessica's friends mom) because none of us were traditional college students. Our parents didn't attend orientation. I don't even think our colleges had orientation. I will say that it helped me feel more comfortable with the school and the staff. It is a beautiful campus and just the right size.

The dorm situation is unique there in that all of their dorms are apartment style. They range from two to four bedrooms with a full kitchen/living room area. The ones that Jessica and Jamie are staying in are the newest and VERY nice! The security seems to be top notch and well staffed. They have their own certified police force on campus.

We all felt very overwhelmed and numb from the day on the way home. The girls were really excited on the trip down but coming home they seemed more stunned and thoughtful. They were able to register for classes while we were there and get their student IDs. It seems so official now! We are definately one more step closer to them starting this new stage of their lives. Move in date - August 16!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

11 days!

I have started going through drawers, closets and cabinets to see what we have and what we will need. Yesterday I went through the medicines and first aid items. Throw out a bunch of stuff that had expired and made a list of things we need to buy. Not too much, fortunatly!

I have inventoried my clothing situation. Not good! I have zero shorts that fit. I don't usually weart shorts. In fact I don't think I even tried any on last summer. I guess that's why I didn't know the ones I have don't fit! I feel like the heat is going to be so bad that I'm going to want shorts. I'm still thinking on this one! I'm also trying to decide about the best shoes for all of us to wear. Any suggestions?

I cleaned out a drawer in my dresser (from all those shorts and t-shirts that don't fit) and have started filling it with "surprises" for the trip. Courtney and Kirsten each have a new bag and I have been picking up little things here and there. Books, movies, activities, etc. Hopefully for the drive down, I won't need to entertain them much. We'll be driving over night. I'm hoping they will sleep most of the way. But the drive home will be during the day, so I need to be prepared. I have also picked up some Disney themed t-shirts to save us from buying any there. I need to find one for me and Mark.

I've been studying the park maps this morning, trying to come up with a good plan! At least a good plan for us! I need to take a shower and go out to run some errands. Not feeling like it though!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Let the countdown begin!

Only 13 more days until we leave for Walt Disney World. Sometimes when I think about it I can't believe we are actually going. At other times, I start panicking! I am a planner and I feel a bit out of control with planning this trip! We are going to be there for 5 days and I know there is no way we are going to be able to do/see everything. The girls are beyond excited. I kind of wish I had kept it a secret until we got there. Not because they are bugging me but just to see their face when we got there.

So we have our accomodations set. A character breakfast scheduled. I have my packing list started. I bought and read a guide book. I visit several websites almost daily. My brain is on overload! The bad part is that I have just touched the tip of all the info on this magical place. I'm counting on that magic to make this a great trip in spite of my lack of knowledge!

Here's hoping for a fun, fun trip!