edited to add photos:
The title of this post is what every mom MUST HAVE, to survive taking four kids to the various Disney parks for a week. I have oodles of photos plus all the images professionally taken by the Disney Photographers at Photo Pass, tons of stories and advice, but I am totally backlogged and buried under a mountain of things to get caught up after being in Florida for seven days. The blog is so back burner. I am just digging out folks. Hang on.
I got up early every day in order to decorate and feed our little people, load them into the van and haul them through the parking lots and to the turn styles of the parks. In order to arrive for the opening and avoid crazy lines, I was up at 6:00 and we were out the door by 8:00. See why I can't begin to even try to call this a vacation? Each day was long, hot and action packed. By the time I got the kids into bed, I was completely wiped out and in need of a long hot bath and a glass (or two or three) of red wine. I could not relax and enjoy the change of scenery because I was too damn busy. This was not an easy, lay around and veg out kind of journey, it was simply exhausting. Sadly, the week flew by and I barely got a chance to look at the photos that document how much activity we crammed into a single week.
Let's start with the sunscreen. It was hot. Bionic heat and humidity with record breaking temperatures above normal for May in Florida. We got into the van after spending the morning at Epcot and the outside thermometer on my van said it was 102 degrees. My van was in the shade at the time. Oy, can you feel the sweat pouring down the back of my shirt, because it was that nasty and disgusting. The sun was hot and the rays were the bad kind. As in sunburns = skin cancer, so each morning the kids were coated in SPF waterproof 50, with 70 on their ears and faces, and we all wore sunglasses and hats. Even with the after lunch re-application of 50 SPF we all managed to get some color. ACKKKKK, my dermatologist is gonna kill me. I followed all the rules and yet I still have signs of having been in the sun. Not good. Not good at all.
I have a new system for charting the stress level at any given point- I call it the grey hair scale, and on a scale of one to ten, ten being the highest ranking, our Disney Days were up there. I came home with a hundred new grey hairs and I am now pondering coloring my hair. It was too hot for my wig, so now my real hair is grey and chlorine/sun damaged. I can either dye what I have left or invest in more wigs. Perhaps I could order a new shaitel and lovingly refer to it as my souvenir from Disney? Do you think Jeff would mind another expense related to the trip? As if. Grrrrr!
As for Gluten Free dining at Disney, the various restaurants offer an unbelievably awesome gluten free menu. There are kids meals and nice certified GF substitutions for bread like items. The execution is sorely disappointing. The restaurant lines are long. You wait your turn. Finally, when you reach the order taking cashier, you order the regular menu items and are then asked to step aside so the manager can come out and take the allergen portion of the order. Tick Tock, Tick Tock, as you wait for the manager to appear. Meanwhile, the rest of your family members, who ordered in a different line, are already eating their regular food. There needs to be another solution in the ordering process. The gluten free menu was totally worth the wait, because the options rocked our world. There was even a gluten free bun available, as well as gluten free cookies for the kids meal.This grin says how much fun it was for CJ to eat like the rest of the children at our table.
My kids learned some valuable life lessons on this trip. They are now experts at waiting patiently in long lines, closing their mouths and eyes during sunscreen applications, and they understand that gift shops are for decoration. At least that is what I said each and every time we exited a ride or show and had to walk past all the stuff for sale. "Just look with your eyes, those are all for decoration!" So far, so good, but all bets are off on the next adventure, I am sure.
We went into the Gulf of Mexico while at Cocoa Beach. My children got sand in every possible crevice of their bodies and then brought some additional sand into their carseats and onto the floor of the van. Good times, Good times.
We dodged crowds of motorized scooters at the theme parks, and witnessed some of the most GAWD AWFUL displays of fashion, including a man in Capri Pants. No trip would be complete without someone sporting a Kate Gosselin hairstyle
and or a mullet or two. The mullet sightings were everywhere and you all know how much I do love me some mullets.
I am trying to get somewhat up to speed on the blog. Somewhat is better than nothing I guess. I know these Disney posts are a little bit discumbobulated and out of sorts. Duh. Hold on while I go open a bottle of Pinot Noir.
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