Thursday, October 6, 2016


I'm not sure how exactly we kept the Disney trip a secret from our very observant 3 year old- but for about 6 months we managed to make plans and talk in code without her picking up on it! 
We started planning the trip (well, Steve & Whitney did the majority of the work for us), and asked my parents to join us. They drove a few days ahead of us to see my Dad's family in Atlanta and rest up on the beach before the chaos that is their grandchildren arrived. 

Tuesday morning we woke Ainsley up and told her we had a really big surprise for her. We told her we were getting on an airplane. and heading to Disney World! (we did video tape it but at 6am it wasn't as exciting as you might think it would be). her response was "oh! I need to get a princess dress!" 
We embarked on our journey with no baggage to check (thanks mom and dad!) and our carry-ons loaded down with diapers, snacks and tons of activities for the kids. Ainsley and Philip boarded first and she got to go inside the cockpit, meet the pilot, and get a pair of wings:) Parker and I waited until last call so he wasn't sitting on the plane for 30 minutes longer than he had to be. 
who doesn't like covering their entire leg with bandaids while on an airplane?
The flight went smoothly, no one got sick or screamed so I consider that a win. Mom and Dad were waiting at the airport to pick us up. Mom snuck up to Ainsley outside and while she was very excited to see her nanny, i don't think it really registered that Nanny and Pop were in FLORIDA with her. 

We met up with Steve and Whitney for a quick lunch and then checked into our resort. From there we took the shuttle to Epcot and saw Nemo, met Mickey, Minnie and Goofy, and walked through the food and wine festival. Whitney enlightened me to the autograph books and said Ainsley had to have one. Thank goodness for Aunt Whitney- because Ainsley quickly became obsessed with getting her autographs from the princesses and characters. 
Wednesday we went to Magic Kingdom where she got to ride a roller coaster, Ariel's ride, Dumbo, the carousel and meet many other princesses. This park was HER PARK. she loved it. And Parker got to ride several rides with too which he thought was so fun. That night we had dinner at Cinderella's Royal Table. When we booked this months ago, we had no idea it would be the highlight of our trip. We let Ainsley pick out a princess dress and shoes to wear to dinner (thank you for discount whitney!) and as new princesses came to her table to talk to her she could hardly sit still and exclaimed "this is the best day of my life!". Jasmine flirted with Parker, kissing his cheek and playing peek a boo. He was smitten and tracked her around the room the rest of the night. 
covered in Princess kisses=one happy little man

Thursday morning we went to Animal Kingdom where we did a safari and tons of cool animals. The adults rode Everest and Steve made fun of me for screaming the WHOLE TIME.  We took the kids back to the hotel to nap, then took the shuttles to Hollywood Studios that night where we saw Star Wars, did the Toy Story ride, the boys rode Tower of Terror and we did a Frozen sing a long show. 
This is mine and Whitney's Roller Coster Faces...we freak out and Philip is stone cold...

Photobomb Whitney!!!

Friday morning we had brunch at Chef Mickeys and the kids got to see several more characters. and eat good food. From there Dad and Parker went back to resort to nap.  Whitney, mom and I took Ainsley to the Bippity Boppity Boutique, and Philip and Steve took off for some rides. This boutique was my second favorite thing we did. It was just so sweet and so fun, and Ainsley felt like such a princess, you could tell. She changed into her Elsa dress, got to sit in a salon chair, pick our her hair style, then have her hair done, nails painted, lip gloss and stickers on her face, and fairy dust sprinkled in her hair. She of course chose to add pink and purple hair:) We let her meet some more Princesses and ride some rides while we were at MK, then we headed back to the resort to meet up with Dad and Parker for dinner. We went to House of Blues and had a yummy dinner with Steve and Whitney and called it a night. 

Saturday was a pool/resort day. We hung out at the pools, splash pads, and water slides at our resort. Ainsley loved the water slide (at first she refused to go down it, then was obsessed with it!). and there was even a little slide for Parker go down. We all took naps that day, and that evening Mom and Dad watched the kids while we went to an arcade bar and the Yachtsman with Steve and Whitney. We could only get reservations at 8:30 and Philip and I were like "man that is so late" and they laughed at us because that's early for them. so we napped to prepare:) 

Sunday morning we walked over to Disney Springs where we did some shopping (Ainsley has been asking for a princess watch, so we let her pick one out), and Parker scored a Chewbacca stuffed animal. We had lunch and then went back to the resort to hang out and let the kids nap. Then we headed back to Epcot to meet the 3 remaining princesses (she was on a mission) and have dinner at a german restaurant. Ainsley finished her Princess Quest by meeting and getting autographs from Ariel, Snow White, Princess Aurora, Jasmine, Cinderella, Rapunzel, Princess Tiana, Belle and of course Anna and Elsa.  Parker just wanted to see Jasmine one more time :)   We said goodbye to Steve and Whitney (tears were shed- i won't say by whom). 
Loves Chewy!!! 
The boys top right, Tower of Terror
longest Princess hug ever---she would not let go of Anna :)
these two RAN across Epcot to make it in time to meet the last Princess of the trip, Belle
princesses- COMPLETE! 
cheers! to surviving Disney with a 3.5 and 1 year old 
Monday mom and dad got going pretty early, but our flight wasn't unil 1:20, so we had time to relax and meander to the shuttle to the airport. The flight home could not have gone better- I got Parker to sleep in the carrier before we boarded the plane (last again), so I walked on, sat down with him, and he slept the entire flight. Ainsley played on the iPad and colored...once again she was invited into the cockpit for pictures and souvenirs.
With Hurricane Matthew hitting Disney tonight, we are so thankful for the great weather we had while we were there. It rained several times, but it never altered our plans or was at a time we had things planned outside. Steve put together our itinerary for us months before we got there. He booked our rooms for us, pick up and dropped of our rental stroller.  Him and Whitney booked us fast passes. They loaded the kids up on all kinds of awesome Disney stuff. They went to the parks with us, every day, so we could use their guest passes. They were seriously the best host/hostess we could have asked for and we are so appreciative of all the time and effort they put into making our trip so MAGICAL. 

We really did have a magical time. We thought this trip would mostly be for Ainsley, but Parker loved it too. He was just so HAPPY and mesmerized by the fireworks, lights, music and attention. Ainsley was in princess heaven and went back and forth over who her favorite princess was every hour. She squealed and laughed and watched in awe at so many things- and those memories are forever etched in my heart. It truly was magical and the happiest place on earth!