WE’RE GOING TO DISNEY WORLD!

If you know Carlyn, you know her obsession with Disney and the Disney princesses. Well, last year, my mother kept insisting that we take Carlyn to Disney World. Andrew and I fought it at first – we thought she was too young. Then Mom came up with the idea that we could pick my dad up from the cruise he was going on in June, and we could go to Disney World after that. We told Carlyn about it and started semi-planning until we realized my cousin was getting married then. We put the plans on hold. From that day on, I kid you not…Carlyn asked every day if we could go to Disney World. I know that she had no clue what was there, but she still asked. Finally, one day in November, she asked me…and I broke. I called my mom and Andrew and told them that I didn’t care how it happened, but I could not listen to her ask that question anymore – we were GOING to Disney World. I contacted a “Disney consultant” that friends of mine used to book their Disney trips, and we set the plans in motion. We collaborated with Santa, and we ended up using it as the girls’ Christmas present. I stressed and stressed about how to tell them – I just KNEW Carlyn would flip out, and we would be the next big viral sensation! Well, that didn’t happen (you can’t expect anything out of children – they always give you the opposite!).  I – I mean, Santa – had a note attached to a Tinkerbell ornament that was left near the cookie plate. It told the girls to find a present in the pantry, and then that present had a note with a poem on it that told them to look behind the chair, then that present was another poem that told them to look in their tent in the playroom…and in that present were two suitcases and two tickets to Disney World!! Carlyn screamed once and then asked to keep playing with her makeup vanity. :/ However, she still was very excited, and we made a paper chain to count down the days. We left January 21 and returned January 24th. My parents also came along!

We drove all the way to Orlando and checked in the hotel – the All Star Movies resort. It was a value resort on Disney’s property, and we are glad we stayed there! They had lots of fun activities going on all the time. People were swimming while we were there, and Carlyn was so sad because I didn’t bring their swimsuits – with it being January, I wasn’t expecting the weather to be so nice! The last day, Mom let Carlyn swim in her clothes. Oh well. 🙂

We went during a time where the dining plan was FREE, so we had a character meal every day, as well as a “quick service” meal and a snack in the parks! We had every meal provided except for breakfast. We just ate granola bars and snacks in the morning and then hit the road!

The first day, we went to Magic Kingdom. As we walked in, I have to admit – I teared up! I was so excited. We immediately jumped in line for the princess meet-and-greet, and the girls met Cinderella, Belle, and Aurora. We then moved on to FantasyLand and rode pretty much everything there – the carousel, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, Peter Pan’s Flight (AWESOME ride!), Winnie the Pooh, It’s a Small World, Mickey’s PhilHarMagic, and more. We also made our way to Rapunzel’s FairyTale Garden and Carlyn got to spend time with Rapunzel! She didn’t like waiting, but it was worth it – it was wonderful. She said that was her favorite part of the trip. We also watched “Dream Along with Mickey” – a show put on at Cinderella’s Castle – and we watched the parade later on. We rode Pirates of the Caribbean and walked around Adventureland, where Carlyn got to meet Peter Pan! (She told him he was beautiful.) Mom and Daddy watched the girls while Andrew and I rode Space Mountain. We had to leave early that afternoon to get to our first character meal – dinner with Cinderella, the Prince, Lady Tremaine, and Anastasia and Druzilla at 1900 Park Fare! They come to your table, take pictures, and sign your autograph book. Carlyn loved the prince. We then made our way back to the room.

The second day, we went to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here we saw a Disney Jr. puppet show, watched an Ariel play, rode Toy Story Mania, rode the Great Movie Ride, and more. We ate lunch here with several Disney Jr. characters – Oso, Jake from Jake and the Neverland Pirates, June from Little Einsteins, and Handy Manny. Carlyn loved this one – the characters danced and sang, and she had a blast going up there with them! Us adults rode a ride here called Aerosmith’s Rock and Roller Coaster, and that was super fun. It was Andrew’s favorite. Speaking of Andrew…we also went to the Indiana Jones stunt show while at HS, and Andrew was called on stage to be an “extra”. He had to dress up, and then the guy called him out to pretend he was the bad guy and act out his death scene! Andrew was hilarious – of course – but Carlyn SOBBED in the audience! She didn’t like that man shooting her daddy in the belly! It was pretty funny. Blakely and I enjoyed the parade here while Carlyn, Gigi, Papa, and Daddy rode Star Wars. That night we grabbed dinner at the hotel and went to bed early.

The third day was spent at Animal Kingdom. We hopped on the safari as soon as we got there, and loved it! The giraffes went NUTS and tried to charge the bus – it was crazy! The guide said she had never seen that before. We also rode Expedition Everest (the adults, anyway), watched a Nemo musical, traveled on a train to the Conservation Station where the girls got to brush goats and pigs, and more. We left that afternoon before the parade and went back to the hotel. We enjoyed some drinks by the pool while Blakely took a nap, and then we went to our third character meal – Chef Mickey’s! This was super fun and we got to meet Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, and Pluto. Then, we said goodbye to Gigi and Papa – they got up early the next morning to head home.

The last day, we went to Magic Kingdom again. We only stayed a few hours, but it was perfect. We were able to see the characters arrive on the train before they opened the gates, and we headed straight to meet Tinkerbell. After meeting Tinkerbell, we went to meet Jasmine and Aladdin. Carlyn freaked a little around Aladdin, so he hid while she talked to Jasmine. She eventually warmed up and talked to him, too. We rode the magic carpets, the Jungle Cruise, Pirates AGAIN (this was so funny, because this was the one ride I wanted to ride again, but I figured it was too scary – however, Carlyn insisted on riding this again too! Like Mother, like daughter.), the Haunted Mansion, and the Spinning Teacups. The girls also danced in the Move It! Shake It! Street Party, and had a blast. We shopped around a little bit and then left around lunchtime. We drove home that night.

We had SUCH a great time. Everything was perfect, and we are already planning our next trip!

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