The Orlando Experience – Off We Go….

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So we begin the process of recapping the past week – I suppose that should say that I begin since there is no we involved…but I’d like to think whoever reads this becomes the we that is involved. Either way, here we go….off to Neverland! Or something like that…

We counted down to this trip for months and months; it seems wild to think it has already come and gone, I don’t know where the time went but I know it passed in a rush of thrill rides, Disney magic, chocolate covered Mickey ears and numerous refrains of “Let it Go”. Seriously – Disney is making a killing on anything and everything Frozen related…alas, I get ahead of myself. Backing up….

Our luggage tags – because Disney took our bags from the airport & brought them to the hotel!

Ready to fly through the air to Florida!

Saying adios to DC for a week!

Not only did we have special luggage tags that marked our bags so that we didn’t have to worry about them once they were dropped at the airport, we also got picked up at the airport by Disney’s Magical Express. Can you imagine the excitement level of being put on a bus with about 45 other people who are all Disney bound? The whole end of the Orlando airport was devoted to lines of people waiting to board the Disney Magical Express – and yes, you had to wait in line for that too. Ha-ha! They played cartoons, showed video segments from the Disney Parks Blog and general park information all the way to the hotel – it was neat!

Disney’s Magical Express – with service to the front doors of the Wilderness Lodge!

Aaaaahhhh – we have arrived! We are five year olds all over again!

So this is the most delightful sign ever – right?

The Wilderness Lodge has always been a favorite spot for my family – I remember the first time we visited the Lodge after it opened, just to check it out and see what it was like. We all decided that one day we would have to stay at the Lodge when we came to Disney…and this time happened to be that chance to stay there! We arrived a little before our room was ready but that wasn’t a problem; Lindsey and I explored the Lodge from bottom to top (or as close to the top as you could get – you couldn’t go past the sixth floor without scanning your Magic Band for special clearance…) and around all the corners and hallways. We stopped on each floor to sit for a little while and after a bit – our room was ready!

The Wilderness Lodge – our home away from home for one week!

Magic Bands! Also – how is my Dad so tan?!?

I love it. I miss it already.

Looking down from the sixth floor – as high as we could go without “special clearance”…

Our first towel creation – Mickey ears of course! Even if they are a little small as mouse ears go…

The bed posts – carved into different animals!

The back of the shower wall – complete with a “Hidden Mickey”

On the balcony of our fifth floor room!

We spent Saturday afternoon and night just hanging out, having supper at the Whispering Canyon Cafe in the Lodge, cruising across Bay Lake on the boats and taking a ride on the monorail. As we were headed back to the Lodge at the end of the night, the fireworks at the Magic Kingdom started going off, so we watched those as we rode toward the dock for the end of day one!

Hello delicious – chicken, vegetables, corn on the cob, ribs, brisket, mashed potatoes & baked beans! Oh yeah, there was cornbread too!

The ribs were delicious – Ging was definitely a fan!

Riding toward the Contemporary on the boats…

Catching a nice breeze blowing off of Bay Lake!

Let the picture taking craziness commence! 

Gotta love Sorcerer Mickey! I mean, you gotta love Mickey period.

The Yellow Monorail – our ride around the resorts for the evening.

A magical end to the first day at Disney!

So – that’s how the week began. There will be more to come later, so get ready! I’ll re-cap each day because if you’ve been on Facebook then you should know I have way too many pictures for just one post. And if you haven’t been on Facebook then trust me…too many pictures and too much to tell for one post! Until tomorrow – adios!

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