Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Panama City Beach & Disney Day One

We are finally home from vacation! It has been a long time since we've all gone on a vacation longer than a long weekend as a family, so we really did this one up big! We spent one night in Panama City Beach going and coming and 7 nights in Disney. We've only been back since Sunday night and I'm ready to go again! I'm not sure my family agrees, though. We are all still somewhat tired. We were very impressed with the condo we stayed in the first night in Panama City Beach, but on the return trip the condo left a little to be desired. They put us in a smaller room than we'd reserved, but they did correct that problem. I seriously doubt we'd stay there again.

Our view was awesome.

The beautiful pool.

Pineapple Willy's deck.

The kids had a good time swimming in the cold pool! I couldn't handle the chill.

Then Disney! The most magical place on Earth! I have never had a vacation I have enjoyed as much as this one. We stayed at Port Orleans Riverside and it was beautiful! We were in Alligator Bayou. We saw a bunny hopping across the sidewalk several evenings. I had a frog land on my foot while we were out walking after dark one night. There were lots of squirrels and cranes around. We loved it.

We started the morning of our first full day with breakfast at Cinderella's Royal Table in the castle. Ernie wanted to take the bus provided by Disney and I wanted to drive. It has been 12 years since I'd been there and I'd forgotten that you have to park way out and wait for a tram at Magic Kingdom. Our reservation was at 9:45 and we weren't ready to leave the resort until 9:00. A big mistake to wait that long to leave. Ernie insisted I go ask for directions, thank goodness! So, I went to the bell services and asked for directions, trying to get out of there in a hurry. One of the workers gave me a map and highlighted the route and said we could easily make it. Another worker looked at her and said "not today, she won't". My heart sunk. I didn't want to start the vacation by missing our first meal with the princesses! She said there was a triathlon going on and all of the main roads were closed. She sent me to the concierge for directions. After waiting in line, I finally got to a concierge and was told that our only hope was to ride the bus. She said that using the back roads and waiting for a tram would take a minimum of 1.5 hours. At this time it was 9:15. Just 30 minutes til our reservation. She said they would hold the table for 15 minutes. We finally made it to a bus and were on the way. My stomach was in knots and I just knew that we were going to miss it. We made it to Magic Kingdom at 10:10. I told the kids that we'd probably lost our table, but we were going to try to make it there and at least find out. We made it to the castle around 10:17 and they still had our table. That was seriously the worst part of the trip(other than the drive). We really enjoyed the breakfast and the atmosphere once everyone calmed down.

Bella loved the stars on the table.

Bella's plate. I loved that they brought her food!

Snow White and my sweet girls.

Michael even enjoyed this meal.

Bella wasn't too sure of Jasmine.

Our first ride.

The older two were thrilled to meet Mickey and Minnie. Bella, not so much!

That was it from day one! A day full of tons of memories.


Amber said...

What a great vacation!!!

We are wanting to do the whole Disney thing, and all your pictures make me want to go TODAY!

Anonymous said...

This looks like the best trip ever!

My kids have never been to Disney. I hope we get to go next year! If we do, I may be bugging you for tips!

Anonymous said...

I probably enjoyed your vacation in the wrong direction, but I love all the pictures! It looked like ya'll had a great time. I hope in a couple of years we can take the boys! All your kiddos are getting so big!