Day 188- Birthday Fun at Magic Kingdom

Today is a spectacular day! It is a very chilly 67 degrees on this this early morning. We are going to Magic Kingdom and know it will be a hot 89 degrees by this afternoon. The skies are so blue and there are fluffy white clouds in the sky.

We get to the heroes parking lot and can hear they just called for, “No more boarding…” on the tram. The safety message begins as we decide walk to the Transportation and Ticket Center. It is about a 5-minute, fast walk, and not bad at all. If you have little ones, you might want to put them in their stroller and save their excitement for the parks! They can use up a lot of energy dancing all the way to the Monorail. Once they get to the park, 8-10 hours can be a long day for little ones.

The kids have planned a special day for me and gave me a “Happy Birthday!” pin to wear for the day. So, first things first! We arrive at Magic Kingdom and head for our lunch reservation at Be Our Guest. We check in and have pre-ordered our meal, so we are seated in a timely fashion. We sit by the windows in the ballroom and I can watch the snow falling as we wait for our server to hand deliver our special allergy friendly order.

Be Our Guest is a beautiful place to celebrate everything. If it is your first time to Disney, an anniversary, wedding, engagement, birthday, or have any other reason to celebrate, this is one of my favorite places. As you walk across the bridge to the Beast’s castle, it is fabulous! Notice all of the details of the lamps as you cross the bridge, and the lion-creatures that guard the front doors. It is incredibly beautiful. As the doors open, there are wonderful archways before you enter the ballroom.

We are so excited that they have a gluten free roasted beef sandwich with French fries; we also have a gluten/corn free sandwich served with green beans, and order French onion soup as well. The food here is delicious!

After lunch, our next stop is the Main Street Bakery for our Starbucks drinks. They are setting up for the Festival of Fantasy parade as we enter. As we are leaving, the parade is coming down Main Street USA. I love seeing all of the floats, the beautiful dancers, and all of the Disney characters.

We stop for a moment in the shade and wait for Twinkie’s tea to brew. We meet a couple from Pennsylvania and they are talking about how difficult it is to make the weather change from very cold to this 89-degree day with 82% humidity. I sympathized and listened. Then, I remember that I need to get my cooling towels out since it is getting hot enough to need them.

Now, my favorite ride is next. So, we head toward Fantasyland. The kids went to look at Sir Mickey’s and I went to see if Gaston was out greeting his loyal fans. He was not, so I walked back up to go to Peter Pan’s Flight. In the meantime, Twinkie met some of the Royal Majesty Makers and was having quite a fun chat with them. As I approached Peter Pan’s Flight, I saw the kids chatting and quickly Twinkie introduced me as, “The Queen” and I asked if I could get a picture with the Royal Majesty Makers! They are such a delight; do take the time to chat with them if you happen to see them out!

Our FastPass+ time is here, so we are off to ride Peter Pan. I love this ride.

Now, the kids and I walk down to see Gaston and watch the girls swoon over him. It is so fun to see him interact and talk with the ladies. He looks across the way, to where buff guy was standing. Gaston left the girls and told the guy that he would “help him” with his sleeves and rolled the buff guy’s t-shirt sleeves back down to cover his arms. The crowd laughs and Gaston picks on him once again. It is just fun watching all of the interactions and pictures.

Next, we have the Under the Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid ride. I love this one too! I cannot wait, they have added some more fishes and it is so fun to feel like you are in the movie. The kids loved this movie when they were little, so we saw it many times. I take in a moment of dreamy fishes enjoying the music, then listen to “Under the Sea.” I love this large cave full of so many fish.

We decide to grab another iced drink at Starbucks. It is so hot today and staying hydrated is very important. We drink so much water during the day. I love having a glass to refill in between rides. When we get to Starbucks, they are preparing for the second Festival of Fantasy parade of the day. There seem to be several High School Bands passing as we are waiting for our drinks to be crafted. They are really fun to hear and to see passing by the windows of Starbucks.

As we are walking to a ride or from a ride, there are characters everywhere, or a play, or a parade – there is something always going on when you are at Magic Kingdom.

Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin is our next ride and we get checked in with the FastPass+ on our MagicBands. The cast member greets me with, “Happy 21st Birthday! Oh, and I see that your brought your younger sisters!” He totally caught me off guard, and all I could do was to laugh and thank him! The line is fairly long, but soon we were on the ride. There is a score that I have not attained yet. That score is 999,999 also known as Galactic Hero. My kids have gotten it a few times, but I’m still working on it! Me? My highest score was today: 339,800!!! Oh, yes! I am happy with this new high score! We stop and get the Galactic Hero celebration pin for the kids!

Well, I have had a blast. It has been a lot of fun celebrating my birthday with my kids at Magic Kingdom. I have had tons of, “Happy Birthday!” greetings all day long! I think I am done for the day! We walk back through Tomorrowland to the new hub where there is a parade in process, so we take our time as we are heading for the front entrance. It gets crowded with people stopping to take pictures. The cast members encourage those taking pictures to go under the rope into the safe zones for those who want to stand and watch the parades. It makes it easier for the people coming up and down the sidewalks and aids in traffic flow. I like days that people are kind and thoughtful toward those around them.

As we are exiting, the cast member waving good-bye says, “Happy Birthday!” The cast member at the monorail hollers, “Happy Birthday!” As I am exiting the Monorail another cast member says, “Happy Birthday!” These are some of the wonderful things that happen all day long when you are celebrating! Be sure to get your special pin! It was a very happy birthday!

Day 48- Magic Kingdom’s Jungle Cruise

Florida is a very windy 64 degrees today, so we get to pull out our leggings, sweat shirts, and jackets to head for Disney! We had the first cold front blow into the Orlando area last night.

We get to the Transportation and Ticket Center and the parking lot is not as full as it usually is by this time. We parked close, so we decided to walk to the Monorail on this brisk afternoon. We get Monorail Black, with the black and red stripes!

Magic Kingdom is perfectly busy. We get our bags checked quickly, scan our MagicBands at the gate, and now we are ready to walk down Main Street USA. We make our way towards Cinderella’s Castle! As we near Cinderella’s Castle, the Dream Along With Mickey stage show begins. It is a really good show.

Our first FastPass+ is for Peter Pan’s Flight in Fantasyland. If you are unable to go through Cinderella’s Castle during a show, you can go around the Castle. There is a walkway to the left, as you walk toward Liberty Square, if you turn right at Sleepy Hollow Refreshments, there is a path that goes up and around Cinderella’s Castle. It is a very pretty walk with the trees on the left and you can still see Mickey and his friends on stage! Oh, now they are changing groups! The princes and princesses are taking the stage!

We arrive at Peter Pan’s Flight and soon we are on our flying ship!

Next, we are going to the Jungle Cruise. I love this ride. It is so fun to interact with the skipper of the boat!

I know it is really chilly with the sun just beginning to set, but I must have a Dole Whip Float! I said to the kids, “I am getting a Dole Whip if you’d care to join me!” We will have three! We were off and enjoying our Dole Whips on the way to the front gates.

We turn down Main Street USA and I can hear the music! Oh, I just missed the Flag Retreat Ceremony, but they are walking down the street, and pause just before their final turn; I step into the street and take a moment to see the Veteran they are honoring. He has the American Flag that has flown over Magic Kingdom today, and he is surrounded by fellow patriots. As they turn, their steps are in perfect sync, and our Veteran’s face is so full of emotion. I am so touched that Disney does this for our men and women that have served our great country.

Yes, it is beautifully cool and sunny and time to head home. I enjoy watching a little family on the Monorail. The dad is sitting the little dude on the seat by the window and then, he slides over, picks him up, and sits him on his lap so the little boy can see out the windows. Their interaction is so sweet. I love seeing so many families having fun with their little ones.

What a beautiful fun day!

Day 30- Afternoon Tea at the Grand Floridian & Magic Kingdom

Today is a celebration day! We have completed 29 days, and today is our 30th day! Now, where to celebrate? DISNEY WORLD! Yes, and today, we should celebrate with high tea! So, off we go to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa to celebrate.

We noticed it is monsoon-like outside; I think Valet is a great choice as I am dressed to the nines and need to look nice for tea. As we are walking in, we see Richard, who is often greeting guests at the resort. We first saw him back in March during our visit on Dapper Day. He is dressed to the nines as well and is so very kind and happy.

There are a few minutes to spare and that will be a wonderful time to browse the stores upstairs around the Grand Room. There is piano music playing in the lobby; it is so relaxing and wonderfully dreamy.

Tea Time! We are seated by the windows, which is perfect because I love watching the people going by outside. Our waitress is wonderful and our tea is perfectly hot as we begin our teatime. We chose the “Buckingham Tea”. The chef made us the most amazing gluten-free tea sandwiches for the first course. Our second course was special breads from Babycakes with lemon curd, Devonshire cream and a jam. Finally, our last course had amazing chocolate mousse and coconut macaroons. It was a delightful time!

Now, we are off to the parks. Tonight we are going to Magic Kingdom, and the rains are pouring down once again as we head to the Monorail. Then, as we are exiting at the Magic Kingdom stop, I realized that with Florida life, you just get used to the flood of water pouring from the sky. So many kids were having a blast kicking up their heels and wading through the ankle-deep water. Did I say that we usually have shoes that work with the water and rain? Today, we only have our tennis shoes, so our feet are soaked. No problem, a little rain can’t stop us, nor can a monsoon! (Monsoon is Texan for tons of rain!)

I stopped in to get a Band-Aid at the First Aid Station, when a lady came in and asked a question I had never heard. She asked the staff, “When do they determine that it is time to shut down the park?” The attendant said, “This is Florida life, we don’t ever shut down the park for rain.” She was amazed that the park would allow people to stand under the awnings until the rain stopped. It was a funny thing to hear as we headed out in the pouring rain with our umbrellas, wet shoes, soppy purses, and dripping dresses to ride our first ride of the day! It’s a rainy day in Florida, good thing Mickey has a raincoat!…

First ride is Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin! It is one of our favorite rides and we love the challenge of hitting the Zurg targets with the cool laser shooters.

Next, we head for the People Mover! It ended up pausing twice for a couple of minutes inside of Space Mountain. Instead of darkness like usual, the lights were on and we got to see what the track and structure actually look like! It was pretty amazing to see.

Then, we have a FastPass+ for Peter Pan’s Flight, my favorite ride! Ok, one of my favorite rides at Magic Kingdom!

Now off to get a Dole Whip for Twinkie, this is her first day back with us after being sick. We are tickled pink that she is back up to speed for day 30!

Time to head home. We get on the monorail with a great young family! They were so fun to talk to! We were so glad to meet them and their son. As we get off the Monorail we look to see if it’s still raining, make that monsoon-ing, as we head home…

Day 7- Beignets at Port Orleans French Quarter & Magic Kingdom

Today we headed for a snack at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter.  They have the best Gluten-Free Beignets!  What’s a beignet?  It is like a square, fried donut hole with powdered sugar sifted on top.  Best things ever!  Got to meet the chefs, including the one who created the original recipe to make these!  Too fun!

Next, we went to Magic Kingdom.  It is always new!  As we walked into the park, we were greeted with happy music as we watched the last of the Festival of Fantasy Parade.  Then, we headed off to ride my favorite ride, Peter Pan’s Flight.  It feels like you are in the movie. We three are sitting in a ship and fly over the story being told in a most unique way.  It is truly magical.

Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin: it is always a must do for fun!  See how many points you can rack up as you are shooting targets and turning your space cruiser to get optimal aim to defeat Emperor Zurg!  Nope, I am not the winner this time; Tooti and Twinkie totally know which targets gain you the most points.  I am in training.  Twinkie was helping me today, but she won today!  😀

The PeopleMover is right outside of Buzz Lightyear’s.  It is a great way to see many rides on that side of the park.  Love!

Getting hungry… what shall we do?  Oh, I think we will grab a bite at Tony’s Town Square; it is near the entrance/exit and it is a fantastic place to eat.  I love this time of the year.  We could walk up and a table was available.  (During the busier seasons, you almost always have to have a reservation.)  Right after we were seated, before our waiter could even take our drink order, the Chef was already there!  Totally surprised me!  He is a great Chef and in no time we were served GF bread.  Then, our food came and it was superb.  The waiter?  Superb.  Needed that nice dinner.

Also, the little girl next to us was named Mae.  Tooti met her and her mom.  Pretty cool since we three have May in our name too!  A nice treat to meet a Mae!

Then we were off to the Monorail and headed home!  On the road home, we were nearing the Contemporary Resort, two deer were galloping across the grassy hills near the monorail track.  We slowed to see if they were going to cross the road.  The oncoming traffic slowed too and we got to enjoy seeing them enjoy the cool evening!  Nice little treasures.

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