I have just finished sewing Michaela's and Jenna's Easter dresses (and it's only Thursday!!), I have shopped for their baskets, I am almost caught up with the laundry, I have edited all 300 pictures from our trip, I have a big plate of spaghetti next to me, and Jenna is deeply engrossed in Peter Pan.
I am now ready to tell you about our trip to DisneyWorld.
It's all about the weather. Like I said before, we had a great time. We had awesome weather, which I was most excited about: warm, low humidity, and mostly sunny. A few passing rainstorms dumped some rain on us, but for less than an hour each time. It was glorious to be comfortable and in our flip flops and sandals and shorts.
Sunset at Epcot: and we live in the frigid Northeast because...???
We had a great time checking out new restaurants and had particularly good meals at Tony's on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom and at the Whispering Canyon Cafe in Wilderness Lodge (which is worth going to just to see the resort... holy gorgeous). We had a character lunch at Ackershus in Norway and the food, while Norwegian-inspired, was actually very good. We also ate a quick service meal at Yak and Yeti in Animal Kingdom that was really good and different than the usual fare. But really, each place has it's own charm and I was thrilled to not be cooking and to be able to eat these big meals. Because Momma's eating for two and is huuun-gry.
Meeting Cinderella at Ackershus
Michaela tries the icebergs as Jenna looks on
We went to Magic Kingdom three times and I'd have to say that Animal Kingdom was the girls' least favorite. Though they did get their hair wrapped there, and that was a big hit.
The main activity for Jenna was meeting the characters. We met Mickey, Minne, Pluto, Goofy, Donald (twice), Daisy, Cinderella, Ariel, Belle (twice), Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Pocahontas, Chip and Dale, and The Incredibles (Mr. and Mrs.). The girls both loved getting hugged and posing for pictures. Michaela also went on some big-girl rides with Daddy: Space Mountain, Test Track, and Thunder Mountain Railroad. She and I had an adventure on our own one night while Daddy took a very tired Jenna back to the hotel: we waited in line for an hour and twenty minutes (an hour and twenty minutes of my life I will never get back, I might add) to ride the Toy Story Midway Mania 4D Spectacular. She loved it and I... well, the important thing is that she loved it.
Lots to See at the Resort. We stayed at a value resort because all the Moderates were booked. It was completely fine: clean, fun, utilitarian, and CHEAP. But it did lack some of the small-scale details and amenities of the Moderate resorts. The major downside (and really only downside) to staying there is that it was flooded with high school students taking Senior Trips. 90% of the kids were fine but we heard some language I was not thrilled with and saw LOTS of FLESH. I mean, the girls wore SCRAPS of clothing: tiny little string bikinis and low cut tops and itty bitty cut off jeans. I actually felt bad for the teenage boys by the end of the week, all hormonal and surounded by all this flesh being flaunted. And they were all tanned up and manicured and belly-pierced and sported very carefully done "casual" updo's. The old fart worrying mother of two daughters in me kept looking around for the chaperones and wondering, "Who's SUPERVISING all these kids?? How do you know they are not all fornicating in the rooms?"
And the girls were all attached to their cell phones, texting away, and at least once a day we sat next to some poor girl who was angst-ridden with some kind of drama about a boy. We actually heard one girl say, in a fabulous mock-Valley Girl accent, "ALL I am gonna do today is LAY OUT at Blizzard Beach and SLEEP because I am so SICK of his CRAP!!" and I was suddenly, overwhelming, profoundly happy that I was married, fat and pregnant with my third child.
On our last night, we were riding the bus back to our resort from Magic Kingdom and I said to Dan, "Don'y you think it's more crowded this week than last?" and a Senior Tripper girl, in a very helpful but unbelieveable self-centered way, says, "Well, it's Senior Trip!" And I thought to myself, "WELL, unless you brought about 500,000 students from your high school, I don't think YOUR senior trip is making the difference." But I really just said, "Oh, there were kids here last week on Senior Trip, too." and she seemed somewhat shocked by this nugget. It was really quite precious.
The Wrap Up. We were really sad to leave by Wednesday... if Jenna was not completely exhausted and overstimulated by the whole trip, I would have looked into staying an extra few days. It was a fantasic break from the routine, lots of fun together, and while every night one of the girls was quite cranky at dinner, we made it through and I think the girls really enjoyed it. Dan and I always leave Disney World with utter awe at the level of perfection demonstrated throughout the whole property: it's so clean, so fun, so big, so well-run, so incredibly pleasant, so magical. We plan on going back again when this baby is three or four, and we plan on bringing reinforcements to help us out.
Jenna in front of the gorgeous topiaries- they had every princess- at Epcot
I leave you with my favorite piece of video from the trip: Jenna on the Kilimanjaro Safari ride. We stopped for a moment, the driver was talking to us and Jenna, somewhat hopefully asks...
It just perfectly encapsulates her whole experience: yeah, I'm having fun, but can we go home now?