Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Disney World

In mid-September, we took a family vacation to Disney World with Lolo and Lola. Gabi still talks about this trip and how fun it was. Bella then mentions riding on a boat (and perhaps Donald Duck).

Princess Gabi with Daddy in front of Cinderella's Castle

Bella on the Mickey ears at the Contemporary hotel

Our first day, we went to Epcot and ate dinner at the Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway. This was perhaps the best meal of the trip, although I had a stomach bug. Disney was running a promotion with a free dining plan, so we had a scheduled sit-down character meal once a day. It was fantastic! The additional quick-service meal each day turned out to be plenty of food for the rest of our meals, even with Bella not old enough to have a dining plan and just eating off our plates. An extra benefit of eating at Cinderella's Castle: showing off for Cinderella was great motivation for Gabi to start walking on her cast!

Cinderella at the Akershus Royal Banquet Hall

Troll of Norway

Bella banging on the drums

Honey I Shrunk the Kids playground at Hollywood Studios

On day three, I came down with the flu (probably swine flu). Bella also caught it. Given that it has about a two-day incubation before symptoms hit, I'm guessing we caught it on the plane. Boo! The flu was miserable, but at least I had lots of help caring for the kids. The little market in our hotel even had children's medicine for Bella, which helped her sleep better at night, only waking up coughing about four times a night instead of every 20-30 minutes like she did before I gave her Benadryl. The flu lasted over a week for both of us, well after we had returned home.

Prince Charming visited us at dinner at 1900 Park Fare

Sleeping Beauty came to breakfast at Cinderella's Castle
Gabi says, "No more pictures! You promised: just one picture!"

Bella running around Toon Town playground

Gabi's "birthday" cupcake
(We celebrated Bella's 2nd birthday while at Disney World,
so we had to celebrate Gabi's "birthday" as well.)

Lolo and Bella investigating a warthog skull at Animal Kingdom

Bella up close to a live crane!

"Minnie Mouse" Gabi with Mickey

Seeing double!

Bella with her favorite Mickey bush at our hotel

On the last day, Gabi got up early to go to the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique inside Cinderella's Castle, where a fairy godmother turned her into a beautiful princess! Just today she proudly told me that she still has a little of the bluish "Cinderella's slippers" nail polish on her fingers from the boutique at Disney. Gabi requested that the hair extension match her own color hair, which I thought was an excellent choice. She looked quite glamorous! She even wore a butterfly jewel on her cheek. As you can see from the pictures, we brought all of Gabi's princess dresses from home to wear while at Disney World.

Chasing bubbles at the Magic Kingdom: a definite highlight

Princess Gabi in the bubbles

Gabi flying on Dumbo with Lola

Tigger signing Gabi's cast

Piglet hugging Gabi

Bella kissing Piglet
(Don't give him your swine flu!)

Gabi on a ferry between hotels

Bella exploring Wilderness Lodge

Michael rode "It's a Small World" with Gabi seven times over the course of our trip. Gabi also enjoyed the teacups and Figment/Imagination and even Peter Pan once she got over her fear of trying it. She watched the Dream Come True parade three times because the characters came up to interact with her.

Besides the boat rides, I think Bella's favorite part was running in the rain (which was on-and-off in the afternoon our first two days) and splashing in the puddles. Once Bella got sick, her favorite part was definitely going back to the hotel for a nap, poor baby. I guess that's why two-year-olds are free!