Disney & Universal Trip. Warning: Mammoth Post

What a great week! Last Wednesday I flew to Florida (Daytona Beach)  for a work conference where I moderated and talked and did other things and then also did lots of partying like I was 25. I think I got 3 hours sleep each night if I was lucky, but it was worth it. I shared a room with a good friend of mine and we caught up and had such a good laugh that it was worth the bags under the eyes. One night, about 4am after we got done socialising, we laid down in the pitch black bedroom and chatted and had a laugh. I really needed that - good girly times. And I got to see some good friends from England that I only ever see at this conference.

On Saturday my English friends drove me back to Orlando and I checked into this place .....

At 7pm Craig and the boys arrived! I was so excited. I stood outside and met their shuttle bus and both lads raced out and ran into my arms for kisses and hugs. There's nothing better in this world than that.

It was warm enough to use the outdoor pool!

Dinner at a pizza place and then we bought them new t-shirts (they picked their own) - Mickey Mouse soccer for Jack, Perry the Platypus for Danny.

This picture of Craig was taken at a big gift shop next to our hotel (where we bought the t-shirts) and it was owned by an Indian man who was raised in Liverpool and he wanted to talk with us but by this time it was 10pm and the boys were doing that thing where they fall on the floor, crawl through your legs and headbutt your stomach.

Sorry love, you are stuck with me

Sunday morning we went to Disney World's Magic Kingdom. It took us 1.5 hours to get there from the hotel even though we were only about 1 mile away (Rule number 1 learned: stay at Disney resort or get a cab).
Jack love it ALL. Every ride, every character, every single thing he saw. Daniel liked the parade and hanging out with me and his dad. He is not a kid that likes loud things and lots of attention.
So anyway, here's a few pictures of Magic Kingdom ...

Princess Castle


Did NOT like the Tea-Cup ride

Pirate Mickey Ears


Taking a call from Mickey (been doing it even when he got home today)

Beyond Excited

Jack & Pooh & Tigger (Danny had no desire to meet these guys)

Last ride of the night : Big Thunder Mountain!

Our fabulous neighbours gave them gift cards. Jack bought Stitch hands, Daniel bought his Mickey phone.
We watched the 8pm fireworks over the princess castle then we got back to the hotel at 10pm and we all went to bed exhausted! We had been out for 12 hours! (Rule number 2: wear comfy shoes so you don't have to wear 5 band aids and take 3 painkillers).

On Sunday we got an early start again and went to Universal Islands of Adventure. I was a little bit more savvy on this trip so we basically speed-walked it straight to Harry Potters Hogwarts and then got in line for the big ride there.  And  it was FANTASTIC. Best ride I have ever done in my entire life because when we stood in line for 40 minutes we were actually inside Hogwarts being entertained by paintings and talking hats and the characters. During the ride I screamed my head off and laughed (but not much, more screaming) with Jack as we held hands and then Craig got to go on with him too (LOVE Universals child swap program). If there is a score of best rides ever (and I can't be arsed to look), I would hope this made the top 10 at least. 

Hogwarts: The Forbidden Journey Ride (I nearly peed my pants when the dragon breathed on me)

Hogwarts: Daniel loved it like a wet fish across the chops

Jack lapping it all up

I took Jack into Ollivanders next and he got his wand of choice, made of dragon's blood and the feather from a phoenix. He used it all day and got rather perplexed why his spells didn't work (help here please fellow parents if you have tips!)

Butter Beer & Spells

Next we went to Dr. Seuss Land. Danny's favourite. He wanted to stay all day and cried when we left (after 3 hours mind!)

Then it was on to Marvel Superhero Land where the Spiderman ride was the best. It was fantastically scary and fun and exciting but Danny was horrified so we left after the first ride.  Jack and his dad went on twice.

Jack & Wolverine

Jurassic Park Land


Today we flew back to Columbus and met by our friend Maureen who drove us home.
Florida was sunny and warm, Columbus is sunny and frigid. But I don't care. I love my home and would probably consider myself a homebody. Plus the crowds and the line-jumpers at the parks just about drove me insane.  Last night at a shuttle bus depot a small aggressive woman pushed Daniel (he's THREE) to get in front of him and I had to give her a sharp elbow in the boob and a loud "Excuse me!" to make her back off.  So it's great to be home and when Jack and I went to the vet to get Ben and Coco this afternoon it was heart-warming. Ben saw us and peed with excitement and both dogs have just love being home. So it was a fab visit, but there's no place like home - right? 


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