I’m going old-school and recounting our Disney trip with recap after monstrous recap. You can read about our trip here: Day 1, Day 2 and Day 3. Our photos from the trip can be found on my flickr page.
Prepare yourself, I’m about to take you back. Back to the days when this blog was nothing but a steady stream of updates about what we were up to. Remember those days, before I started throwing in sponsored content and stuff about my feelings? Yes, I’m going to post a recap of Disney. So many of you have asked about our trip, so I thought I would oblige. And seeing as how I never quite finished the Disney scrapbook from our last trip … five years ago … this seemed like a more realistic way for me to preserve those memories. Bear with me – or don’t. I’ll spread these posts out over a few days and include “Disney Recap” in the title so that you can feel free to skip them and wait for something more exciting to come along. With the crew I live with, it’s a good chance that won’t take long.
We started our trip in Tampa. My Tita Hortensia and Uncle Bill live there, as do several of my cousins. We flew into Orlando late Friday night, drove to Tampa, and went straight to bed. Saturday morning we woke up and had breakfast with my cousin, Rachel, and her family. After breakfast Rachel and her family drove us out to Honeymoon Island. Although the water was too chilly for swimming, the kids enjoyed wading in the water and collecting sea shells. And then we took what just might be my favorite family photo to date:
We spent the rest of the day with family. Later that evening I took the kids for a walk around my aunt’s neighborhood. They loved looking at all the different kinds of flowers and trees, and I’m kicking myself that I didn’t take a picture of my aunt’s lemon tree that was loaded with fruit. We found a pond the kids wanted to explore. It looked nice enough, except for this sign.
As if that wasn’t enough to freak a mom out, we witnessed the weirdest wildlife phenomena I’ve ever experienced. Shortly after we approached the edge of the pond, every single bird in or around the pond flew right at us. That Alfred Hitchcock fellow was right about birds. Soon after, turtle after turtle started surfacing near the edge. They would climb out of the pond and start slowly ambling toward us. We didn’t linger for long – I was afraid the gators were next.
The next morning we drove to the other side of Tampa to visit my friend Lisa B. Lisa lived right around the corner from us in Nashville and was the founding member of the OP (Original Playgroup). Lisa and I get to see each other once a year on our annual Girls’ Trip, but the kids haven’t seen each other in years. As toddlers, Elena drove Lisa’s son, Kyle, batty. He always had an impeccable sense for rules and order, and she? Well, she liked to wreak havoc on rules and order. I’m happy to report that they got along smashingly this time around. Still, Kyle was giving himself some space just in case.
After lunch we made the drive to Orlando. We checked into our hotel, All-Star Sports. It’s at this point I realize that there isn’t a single photo of the hotel from our entire trip. Just imagine bright, gaudy colors and enormous statues of sports equipment. Unfortunately, the size of the props was not proportionate to the size of our hotel room. We had 290 square feet of space to share for five nights. If you’re going to stay in a Disney property, be prepared to shell out at least $75 more a night if you’d like a little more personal space.
We spent the rest of the evening wandering around Downtown Disney before heading back to the hotel for an early bedtime. Next up? We kick off Disney with an epic 14-hour day spread out between Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom. Good Lord, I’m tired again just thinking about it!