Though just a short weekend trip, we had a blast...
Friday morning DH and I dropped Em off at school. We then went to Panara where DH worked on his novel and I did some school work. (Both of us were determined to have NO MORE work this weekend!)
Then I dropped DH off at work. I did some errands, checked some blogs, and loaded the car. I then picked Em up just after naptime at her school. We headed to pick DH up at work. Then we were Orlando bound.
We checked into our hotel and then walked around the grounds a little.
Em chillin' in a hammock near one of the hotel's lakes.
One of the best features of staying at Disney hotels is that they offer free transportation to all of the Disney parks.
DH and Em on the bus. Friday night we went to Downtown Disney to eat dinner and check out the shops. (Em spent her birthday money from Nana and Papa on a cute "Baby Minnie Mouse" plush toy.)
Saturday morning we were at the Magic Kingdom when it opened. At 8:50, there is always a short song/dance show as Mickey and other characters ride in on a train and "welcome" visitors to the park. The show ends with a countdown to the park opening. Em loved this!
We were able to ride Peter Pan, Snow White, and The Haunted Mansion without waiting! Then we headed to Splash Mountain. DH and I have ridden the ride many times and have never gotten too wet. Unfortunately, Emma and I were DRENCHED! She was crying and upset at first, because she was soaked and uncomfortable. Luckily it was a 90-degree day and sunny, so we dried out in time. But you'll see we both have flat hair in all our pics. Bummer!
For me, one of the highlights of the trip was our Saturday afternoon lunch in Cinderella's Castle. Em and I had never eaten inside the castle before. DH hadn't dined there since high school. I made the reservation back on Father's Day, because reservations fill up quickly, as you can book the date up to 3 months in advance. The lunch is called "Cinderella's Royal Table." It's wonderful because there are a variety of princesses that visit each table during the meal. Each of them took time to autograph Emma's book and pose for a photo with her. Every diner is also entitled to a photo package of photos of the diner with Cinderella. Em LOVED the excitement of eating inside the castle, and was tickled pink to see many princesses there.
Em with Belle
(Emma thought it was funny when Belle saw her shirt and said, "Oh! I should have a picture of YOU on my shirt!")
Em and Sleeping Beauty (A.K.A. Aurora)
Em and Princess Jasmine (1st time she "met" this princess)
Em and Snow White
Ceiling view from our table
Em at lunch. Note the Mickey shaped kid's plate.
DH at lunch
Em and Cinderella.
(Emmaism of the weekend: Em to Cinnderlla "Your castle is lovely." Awww!)
After our awesome lunch, we headed to some more rides...
DH and Em check out the loot after riding Pirates of the Caribbean
I don't know what we'll do when she gets too big for the stroller. We haven't had a Disney visit yet, where we haven't convinced Em to take a mid-day nap so that she can stay up late for the evening parade and fireworks. It's worked every time!
Close-up of Em's hand. She fell asleep holding the "Wishing Star" that was given to all diners in the castle.
See the gold ribbon on the carousel horse? On our way to the Magic Kingdom, the bus driver was giving park trivia. He informed us that there is only one horse on Cinderella's Carousel that has a gold ribbon on her tail. This horse is named "Cindy" and is Cinderella's personal horse.
Of course, Em immediately wanted to ride on Cindy. We explained that with 50 horses on the carousel and numerous people waiting in line, there was no guarantee that Em would be able to ride Cindy. Fortunately, Emma seemed content to at least "find" her.
However, as luck would have it when we were waiting in line to ride the carousel, we ended up being FIRST in line to enter for our group of riders. Thus, Em WAS able to ride Cindy. She was thrilled!
Em on Cindy and Daddy on an anonymous horse
Em was fond of the purple roses that adorned Cindy
We were able to ride many rides. Though the forecast predicted rain, we had a lovely sunny day. We watched the evening Spectralight parade and saw some fireworks before riding a few last rides. Em thought it was hilarious when we sat behind DH and rode Thunder Mountain during the ending of the fireworks show. DH would point at the sky as though he were creating the fireworks. Quite humorous.
We left the park 15 minutes before it closed, caught the bus back to our hotel...and fell asleep easily!
This morning we were able to have some time at the lovely Coronado Springs Resort where we stayed. The hotel had many lovely features.
The decor of the hotel is Spanish themed. Below you can see the view of the restaurant, conference center, and gift shop buildings. They were located across/around the lake from the room we stayed in. (It looks far, but was easily walkable.)
Em and the Minnie Mouse doll she bought pose by the lake.
Awesome waterfall at the hotel swimming pool.
Em and Minnie at the hotel playground. (It was super hot, so we didn't play much. Though we did enjoy the lovely heated pool this morning. Awesome!)
Em took this photo of DH and I just before we left the hotel.
Lovely, lovely weekend! And I'm feeling much less stressed...let's hope it lasts! :)
9 hours ago