Monday, June 19, 2017

Disney Day 5 - Heading Home / Animal Kingdom / Hollywood Studios

On Saturday, my family (minus Jake) and Lindsey's family were heading home. My parents & Jake were staying to go to Animal Kingdom and Billy's family was staying to go to Hollywood Studios one more day. 

Mine & Lindsey's day....

We were waiting for the Magical Express bus to come pick us up. I was praying that one of these two did not fall into the fountain. Hollon kept leaning further and further over trying to touch the water. The more I told her to stop, the more she thought it was a fun game. 

 To try to get away from the water, we moved our party outside

 We then proceeded to block the walkway with a game of Ring-Around-the-Rosie

Finally, our bus came and we loaded up and headed to the airport. Here we are about to board. Jake wasn't with us, and it kind of threw off our good seating arrangement we had when we flew down.
It certainly wasn't the best flight, but we made it back to Atlanta and no passengers tried to jump out of the plane due to our kids. So I consider it a success. Hollon fell asleep on our way to baggage claim. She slept through baggage claim, slept on the shuttle ride to our car, slept while I changed her diaper in the floor of the car. And then woke up when I put her in her car seat. And stayed awake the entire ride home. (Hollon is not a very good car rider when awake.) But we made it home and all was well.

 That night, she was looking at all of our pictures from Disney on the iPad

And then, no joke, she fell asleep like this in her chair. It was the sweetest thing and a perfect ending to a near perfect trip.

While Lindsey & I were at the plane circus, Jake was living it up with my parents at Animal Kingdom. I was excited for him, because he doesn't often get just one-on-one time with Nana & Gran. Either the cousins are there or sister is there. This was just a chance for him with them. It made him feel so special. (And no, he wasn't specially picked for this! It just sort of happened accidentally, and we just rolled with it.) They rode the new Pandora ride and said it was AWESOME. They did the safari and river rapids. They went back to the hotel and swam and rested and then headed back to the park that night. They got to ride Pandora again and do a few things and then decided as much fun as everything was, they were tired and wet (it rained all afternoon) and ready to head back. 

On Sunday, Jake rode back with my parents to Prattville and then they brought him up to Birmingham on Monday. I loved hearing him talk about the trip and the special memories he made with Nana & Gran.

So this wraps up my Disney recaps. It was an amazing trip. I was worried about the trip. 4 families. 7 kids. That is a lot of different schedules. Different personalities. A lot of little kids. There is a lot that could go wrong. But it didn't. Traveling with a group that large, my advice is to try to plan a few things to do together, but know that most of the time you will be split up. But try to change up the groups each time you split up. We were constantly changing up the groups, so even though all 15 of us were not together the entire time, I still felt like I shared the vacation with everyone. I did some things with my sister and her kids. Some things with Leigh Ann and Marrell. Some things with Robbie & Jake. Some things with my parents. Some things with just Jake. And sometimes it was just Hollon & I. We stayed flexible and that helped a lot. I do hate that Lindsey got sick, but I'm glad we were all there to help out.

Growing up, I got to go to Disney 3 times (ages 4, 8 & 12). They were amazing memories and some of my very favorite vacations. I love taking my kids to Disney, and hope they have just as fond of memories. A humongous thank you to my parents, for this precious gift. Words could never properly express just how much this trip meant to me and our family and how grateful I am to my parents. Hopefully all of the fun memories we will talk about for years to come, the laughter from their grandchildren, the twinkle in their eyes from the wonder of Disney, is just a glimpse of our sincere appreciation. It was an amazing trip with 14 of the people I love most in this world. 

It was simply magical.  

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