Holiday Officially Starts Today!!

Work is done, we have collected little miss so the holiday can officially begin today…. and this is what I’m doing all day… I guess you could say this is my happy dance…

We leave for the airport in 2 hours and while Paul is having a kip, I am doing sat watching Beauty and the Beast for the 3rd time in 2 days!! I am so excited to see the stage show of this. I would imagine there will be tears…

 

4 Parks in One Day – The Disney Challenge

Since this holiday was booked – and more so in the last few months – I’ve been watching loads of videos on YouTube about Disney, Universal and Orlando in general. Paul thinks it’s weird but watching other people enjoying their holiday and wandering around the places that are all so familiar to me just gets me even more excited. I know exactly how they’re feeling when they get that first glimpse of the Castle in Magic Kingdom, the amazement at the size of Spaceship Earth and the emotions when you walk into Hogsmeade and see the actual Hogwarts!! It just puts me straight back there and keeps the holiday memories alive for a little big longer until the next visit. Plus when you’re watching people who’ve visited on numerous occasions you always see something new that you may not know was there so gives you idea for future trips and an excuse to book them…. ‘but I HAVE to go again, I didn’t see that last time….’

One of the videos I watched last week was about doing 4 Disney parks in 1 day. Now, I’ve quite easily done 2 – Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios you can easily do in 1 day if you have fastpasses etc for the rides you want to do – but 4? Now that’s a challenge I want to try.

I actually didn’t know before watching that video that you can get a boat from Epcot to Hollywood Studios I just knew about the buses! So I’ve been travelling the long way for years!

Having the benefit of extra magic hours will make it a lot easier to do this I think and it’s a cool way to see things by using the monorail and the boats. Maybe stopping by Beaches and Cream between Hollywood Studios and Epcot for one of the world famous ‘Kitchen Sinks’

Kitchen

Having that much sugar should clearly give us energy for walking round 2 other parks surely!! I’ve just got to convince Paul it’s a good idea 🙂

I shall let you how we get on 🙂

It’s NEXT WEEK!!

Excuse me while I squeal a little!! I can now finally say we go next week!! The excitement is getting a bit much now to be honest I may well burst at any moment!

I get asked loads why I love Florida so much and how there are ‘loads of other places in the world’ but you know what? Apart from Italy (and maybe Germany after watching a Vlog about Europa Park) there isn’t really anywhere else I’m that bothered about visiting and I don’t think they’ll live up to my expectations after being to Disney.  I’m not a sit by the pool and drink type so a package holiday being stuck in a resort is my idea of hell I need things to do!!

I get asked why I don’t get bored being that I’ve been before – this will be trip number 6 – I don’t get bored because there’s always something new to see. In the space of 17 years I’ve seen loads of things come and go.  Rides like Snow Whites Scary Adventures and Mr Toads Wild Ride and Toon Town where you could visit the houses of Minnie and Mickey Mouse have gone and are missed and then there are things like Alien which scarred me for life and I’m not sorry to see the back of.

Of course the big new thing is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter which has now stretched over 2 parks instead of just the one that there was on my last trip.

Even in 3 years there has been loads of development and new stuff to check out this time. Aside from the WWOHP extension there’s also the New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom, the new Frozen show and new parades at Disney. As well as the developments at Downtown Disney.   Jurassic Park at Islands of Adventure now has a Raptor encounter and Universal Studios has Transformers and Springfield USA is open.

Seaworld has opened Empire of the Penguin and opened some new shows as well, not to mention the big opening of I-Drive 360 which comprises of the Orlando Eye, Madame Tussauds and Sealife Orlando.

With more changes and new rides/parks opening over the next few years – Avatarland at Animal Kingdom, the Star Wars expansion at Hollywood Studios (or whatever it will be called then…) and Universals Volcano Bay as well as the much talked about Nintendo Partnership at Universal.  And then there’s the King Kong ride that I totally forgot about – I remember the original one!! You can never get bored of Orlando there’s always something new opening!

The other thing I love is how accessible it is and how completely suitable it is for anyone with a disability. Be it a mobility issue like me or more complex needs no matter where you go in Orlando they will do whatever they can to help you and have policies in place for everything you could think of. Nothing is a hassle to them and unlike some other holiday destinations – I’ve been put in upstairs rooms in hotels with no lift and been felt like I’m causing the problem when I’m unable to walk up the stairs!! Here any sort of Disability isn’t seen as a major problem and rather than make a fuss they just figure out how to help you rather than huffing about it!!

The one thing I haven’t done properly in Orlando is a water park – I did Aquatica last time but all I did was bob along in the lazy river – I’m curious to see how they are geared up for someone like me.  There’s quite a few things I’m doing for the first time on this trip, Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon which I’m really looking forward to. Discovery Cove which is something I’ve heard nothing but good things about (and that’s not just because all the food and drink is free), We’re doing a Penguin Encounter at Seaworld where we actually get to meet a real penguin – I’m a BIG fan of anywhere where I can cuddle any sort of animal, not sure the penguin will want me to cuddle it but I will give it a try.  We have an Airboat ride as well which I won’t lie, I’m a little bit scared of. I don’t really like boats at the best of times – unless it’s a cruise ship – so being on something that doesn’t look that steady and surrounded by gators isn’t exactly filling me with excitement. I panic in a kayak so goodness knows what I’m going to be like on this.  Also I’m finally getting to do a character breakfast – the bonus of taking kids – we’re doing both Chef Mickeys and Universals Superstar Breakfast (if the tickets get sorted in time) and also the Pirates Adventure Dinner Show. Last time I went to a dinner show I was ill with sunstroke and it wasn’t a pleasant experience so fingers crossed this one will be better.

The only thing that could make this trip even more perfect is that elusive booking at ‘Be Our Guest’…..

11 Days, Restaurant vouchers and my last ‘what I must eat’….

This week is dragging! Not long to go now and the only things that I need to do are hair and my Disney nails 🙂

I’ve mentioned before on this blog about how to save money on eating when in Orlando (look at my Places to eat page).  So this week I’ve been signing up to loads of mailing lists and getting some money off vouchers. It’s a really good way to save a few pennies when you’re over there. Some of them only have a 2 week validity so it’s best to do them a week before you go.  They love their coupons in Orlando so you’ll always find some great ones in a lot of the restaurants and also gift shops when you’re there. Look out for the booklets on the way out of shops etc and pick up as many as you can find! Groupon is another great place to look for offers and deals on restaurants in the area.

One place I cannot wait to eat in again and the last thing on my list of ‘Things I must eat’ is this; bloomin-onion-289x208

The infamous ‘Bloomin Onion’ from Outback Steakhouse. To be honest I’ve not had a bad fried onion of any description in Florida but this is just amazing.  I have NO idea what they put in the batter but there’s definitely cinnamon in it and the dip is amazing as well. Everytime I look at a picture of these my mouth waters and I can taste it!! I’ve raved about it since I came back last time and it’s the one thing I’m looking forward to eating the most! They also do amazing steaks 🙂 But the Bloomin Onion is worth the visit on its own!!

Nearly ready to go!!!

17 days now and the very last bits have been purchased that we needed, cases are all packed 🙂 Just have to weigh them now – they’re FAR too heavy for me to lift them which can’t be good… Best purchase of the day goes to this:

NOW-DISNEY-2014-v1

Currently on while I’m sitting in my office ready to start work and will be all I’m listening for the next 17 days, if you’re booking attraction tickets today and hear Disney music in the background it’s probably me you’re talking to – a good way to get customers even more excited for their jollys no? It even came with a bonus disc of Christmas songs which includes the 12 days of christmas with Mickey, Minnie, Donald etc and the single best version of it I’ve ever heard… There’s no proper video of it on YouTube but have a listen to this, always makes me giggle…

Paul is FINALLY getting into the holiday spirit and modeled his Pinocchio outfit (complete with the fab hat for me today) and now I’m jealous because it’s so much better than mine 😦

paulpinoch

It’s THIS Month – Now I’m allowed to be excited!!

Ok, so we all know I’ve been bursting with excitement about this trip since I started writing this – and since it was booked last year – but now with only 18 days to go I’m officially allowed to be excited 🙂

Cases are now packed – mostly – with a few little bits that we need to get. That’s the excuse for packing early ladies by the way, it’s so you have plenty of time to buy things if you realise you’ve forgotten when you’re packing. In my case it was pants for my other half, I don’t think he would’ve been best pleased if we got there and he had 6 pairs to last him 2 weeks.  I managed to con him into Disneybounding so he now has a VERY cool Pinocchio outfit complete with an amazing ‘Real Boy’ hat from www.cakeworthystore.com – who I highly recommend for bounding stuff its really good and shipping is really fast. and seriously how cool is this hat…

realboySo now we have Dopey, Pinocchio and Minnie Mouse 🙂 Glad to see everyone is getting into the spirit of it now 🙂

ESTAs and Insurance were done today as well so we are all pretty much ready to go.

I’ve also conned my other half into doing the Universal Superstar Breakfast, I’ve heard mixed reviews on this one but I think the chance to have breakfast with a Minion should outweigh anything else!!