We left for Disney World the day after Christmas…the whole family in a 15 passenger van, 6 parents, 1 uncle, 7 kids, and enough electronics to serve a small town’s needs left at 7 am. My parents, the brains in the group, took their own vehicle a few hours later. They surprised the grandkids on Christmas day with a bag full of Disney parifenalia including t-shirts that said, “I’m going to Disney World!”. I’m sorry for those of you who have not seen the video, which I feel sure will be on YouTube soon, because it was classic! All lined up on the sofa and being made to look at the ceiling as to not get the jump on the cousin next to them, the kids sat as my mom handed out the bags. Once told “go” they tore into them like like a bunch of (well, fill in your own blank) at Wal-mart on Black Friday. Tissue paper flew and I’m quite sure a few small Disney products got lost or tossed, but once they realized what great thing had just transpired- they leapt off the couch (knocking off the lamps on the table behind the couch) with blood curdling screams that even now make me cringe! And at this point, they didn’t realize they were leaving about 12 hours…
Now, I know you are all thinking that we (the parents of said children) would at this point have everything packed and ready, hidden under our bed so that we would be ready to go…ummmm, that would be a big ol’ “HELL NO!! ” After many thanks, hugs, and some tears we all left in a mad dash to get on with our day that consisted of packing and more Christmas. Luckily, I did have the foresight to get the laundry done before Christmas, but I can’t say the same for my siblings. Considering I think my sister wore the clothes she slept in to Disney, I would say not.
Fast forward to the 12:30 am Dec. 26th….
I’m still up trying to get things done including getting the kitchen somewhat in order (get dirty dishes from the past two days in dishwasher), get snacks and drinks together (valium and beer- well, my older brother was getting the beer), and making sure movies and books were downloaded to the many electronic devices that were traveling with us. Finally around 1:30 I think I settle down to sleep.
5 am, December 26th…
First FB status update posted…”We are up and moving.”….I was TOLD we were shooting to leave by 6 am…apparently I was the only one up and moving….
I will abreviate this for all of our sakes because there is no physical way to to a play by play of the whole trip. (No, I didn’t put everything on FB)…
1. My older brother had an amazing traveling play set for us that included “Holiday Road” from The Vacation movies and “Coming to America”- see FB for videos.
2. We made 3 stops before leaving the city limits…yes, I said three.
3. My sister and I got about 1/2 way through our own rendition of the 12 Days of Christmas before we stopped to FINALLY make a game plan about our trip (yep, we waited and mapped it out on the way down- that’s how we ride!) Yes, we have been told by several people since how it was all over the news about how busy Disney was and how they were closing parks daily because of too many people.
4. My older brother took us in the back way, literally we came in through the employee entrance to the park in the van.
5. When we got to the hotel, Baby Girl 1 realized that her NEW laptop had been stepped on in the van and shattered the screen. Not a good start…
6. We woke up at 6 am one morning to get to the Magic Kingdom by 7 to avoid lines- WTH??
7. We lost Baby Boy not once, but three times! On the second time we are in a large restaurant and he wandered from the table only for me to FREAK OUT and have the matrade call and all points all points bulletin out on him, only to find him hiding under the table next to ours taking a dump! I did buy a leash for him and he got upset and said, “Mom! I am not a dog! I am a boy!” What the hell ever! I tied the leash to him and the stroller for the rest of the trip.
8. My favorite times were when all 16 of us were in the van or on the monorail laughing and just being with each other.
9. It was even more fun when we got on the wrong train. You just have to laugh. The funniest was at 11 o’clock at night when people were GOING to the Magic Kingdom when we were on the way home from Epcot….my mom- “What the hell is wrong with these people going to the Magic Kingdom at 11 o’clock at night?!?!”
10. My nephew became a Jedi in training (not sure what they call those) at Hollywood Studios- great show if you’ve never been. And yes, the Force is VERY real.
11. On the way home LOML and I remembered that we never went and threw out the two dirty diapers that we stuck out on our balcony- my deepest apologies and sympathies to the housekeeper and/or next guest.
12. I loved watching my parents as they were watching the rest of us having a great time-I think that was their favorite part.
13. The night before we left I realized my Kindle had been stepped on and the screen was shattered….CRAP!!!!
14. Looking back, the one thing someone said on the trip that made the most sense…”As long as everyone in this van is ok, nothing else matters.”
So, there you have it- a random post about our crazy trip the day after Christmas to Disney. It could have been to the largest ball of twine and it wouldn’t have been any different because as long as we were all together and safe- that’s all that mattered.