Disney Memories

We are off to Forida in a couple of months and I am very excited! I have been to the Sunshine State twice previously and have been looking forward to going back. The first time I went as a teen to Orlando with my family and it was all about the Disney and Universal theme parks and cheap shopping. The second time I went with now hubby and we travelled around visiting Miami Beach, the Everglades, Disney and Kennedy Space Station. On this holiday it will be mostly all about J and what he wants to do, but I am determined to make a trip over to the Gulf Coast while we are there too (which J will love too). As we have been ensuring we are all prepared for our holiday I have been thinking back to my previous trips and I thought I would share my favourite Disney memories from my previous trips.

Donald Duck

I love Disney! On our last visit, it took a fair amount of persuasion to get hubby to visit The Magic Kingdom. He wanted to go to Universal but I’m not a big ride girl and besides he had never been to Disney and needed to be introduced to the magic. Once he was in he was under the spell and loved every minute of it. Hubby enjoyed the rides, the shows, the shops and he even had a strong desire to meet his childhood favourite character, Donald Duck.
We kept an eye out for him all day, but he was proving elusive. So when hubby went to the toilet I called Customer Services from a free payphone that happened to be nearby and begged them to tell me where Donald could be found. They wouldn’t at first but then relented and told me to go to the mystery character line but they warned me that we only had 20 minutes and Donald would be gone. I rushed hubby past several rides and points of interest much to his confusion. When we got to our destination, the named characters were Chip and Dale but the queue was massive so it wasn’t too hard to persuade hubby to join the mystery guest line (a little tricky as he was quite a fan of the cheeky chipmunks too). What happened next I definitely I wasn’t prepared for. Poor Donald didn’t know what hit him – literally! Hubby saw Donald, screamed with excitement, threw down his rucksack and ran at full speed to engulf Donald in a bear hug. Yep, my Disney reluctant hubby had a child inside him after all.

 

Donald clearly didn’t get greeted like that very often as later in the day when we were watching a parade, Donald was merrily waving to the crowds and then spotted us and he clearly recognised my husband as Donald blew him kisses, jumped up and down (as much as a duck can) and waved like mad at us. Everybody nearby starred, probably thinking that we were great friends or family with Donald. I think this made the whole encounter even better. Even to this day, some 11 years later, the photo of hubby hugging Donald takes pride of place in our home.
A very happy Hubby with Donald Duck

 

Disney Water Parks

I can’t remember exactly how old I was when I went to Orlando as a teen, but I think about 14. I remember visiting the Magic Kingdom and Epcot (where I had sun stroke) and what was then called MGM Studios, but because I have visited Magic Kingdom and MGM as an adult those memories are hazier. What really stands out from when I was a teen are the water parks.

 

Typhoon Lagoon

I always loved water parks as a child and so I was very excited about coming to outdoor ones. I went for a quick wander around while the rest of the family were faffing around at the sun loungers to see what it was like and I stumbled onto quite a discovery. Remember this was in the age before the Internet, so I didn’t know what these parks entailed. In front of me was a lagoon filled with people snorkelling with stingrays, tropical fish AND sharks!  I was so excited! I loved snorkelling and marine animals and sharks. I rushed back to my family and told them that they had to come with me straight away to swim with sharks. They didn’t believe me! It seemed so far fetched to them at the time. I remember it took me a few minutes to convince them and even then until they saw it for themselves I don’t think they believed me. Snorkelling with the sharks was a definite highlight on my holiday and probably why I suggested (much to hubby’s shock) snorkelling with tiger sharks for my 26th birthday in Hawaii.

 

Davey Crocket

I am not actually sure if this is the correct name as this water park no longer exists, but we had a lot of fun there and so for the purpose of this post is what it will be referred to. We headed to Davey Crocket straight from Epcot one lunchtime. My brother had spent the previous day in bed with sunstroke and I had just been sick so my parents decided we needed to cool down. Submerging myself fully in a cold pool did wonders for making me feel  better so I set off to explore the park. Here I found a water flume unlike any I had seen before. The flume stopped mid air and the person free falls for a few meters into the water. Now, I am not someone who you would typically describe as brave, so this would not normally be something that would appeal to me, but as the tiger shark experience above hints I do have a streak in me which likes to push me out of my comfort zone and this was one of those days. So after watching and debating for some time, I queued up, reached the top, took a very deep breath and got on the flume. As I fell through the air I felt exhilarated and incredibly proud of myself (I still do just thinking about it). As I hit the water though my bikini top fell off which at 14ish was incredibly embarrassing. Luckily the water was deep and no one was too close to notice so I hurriedly readjusted and with pride and glee rushed to tell my parents. The excitement came crashing down though as they didn’t believe me! My husband laughed when I told him how outraged I had been. He said he found it hard to believe too – the cheek! I am absolutely not one to be seen as dishonest though as I pride myself on honesty (although I am probably a little bit too honest quite a lot of the time) so I insisted that they all come to watch me. My brother and I queued up to ride, but while we were waiting they closed the park due to a thunderstorm. We had to leave and I never got my chance to show them just how brave I was. I’m still not sure my family ever did believe me!

 

 

Taking J to Disney

As soon as J was born, we knew that he would be taken to Disney World as it is a place that is very special to us and full of wonderful memories. We weren’t planning on taking him so young, but an opportunity arose that was simply too good to be true and so we will soon be giving J his first taste of the Disney magic. I have no idea if he will love the rides and the character meets and greets or quite simply hate them. He has been to Peppa Pig World and happily kept away from anything too fast or too high, but he is older now so we will wait and see. What I do know though is that Animal Kingdom and the water parks will be huge hits with J and I can’t wait to take him on the Kilimanjaro safari!

 

Have you been to Disney World? What are your favourite memories?

  Disney World Magic Kingdom castle at night

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23 comments

  1. I love this post – it brought back so many memories for me! I visited Disney twice, once when I was 10, and again when I was 16, and both times were incredible. I absolutely cannot wait to take my boys when they’re a bit older. I love the Donald Duck story – my husband has never been to Disney either and doesn’t really get it, but I love how everyone gets won round in the end. And I loved the water parks too – Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach were amazing (and I’m sure we went to that Davey Crockett one first time too) Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

  2. there is so much to do in that area, I absolutely love it. I’ve been going to Orlando almost every year for at least a long weekend for going on 20 years now. I may not make it this year, but I’m ready to head back #fortheloveofblog

  3. Love the Donald Duck story! I went to Disney for the first time at the tender age of 28 – but I still found it really exciting and magical! Mu husband’s dad and stepmum live in Florida, so we definitely plan to take the wee one once she’s a bit older. #fortheloveofBLOG

  4. I’ve been to Disney world twice and we’ve agreed that once the boys are old enough we’ll be going again. I cannot wait and I know they’re gonna love it aswell as me of course! It really is such a magical place! #sharingthebloglove

  5. You have such lovely memories I can see why you want to take the kids. I have never been but I have always dreamt of going and I am adamant that we will take our daughters in the next few years once they are both old enough to remember it and to get the most out of it.

  6. I went to Disney when I was about 10 and absolutely loved it! I can’t wait to take my girls there too! #fortheloveofblog

  7. I am a Disney addict, we have booked Disney land Paris for Jasmine at 10 months and Florida next year when she will be just under two! You will have an amazing time! I was 25 when I first saw the castle in Florida and cried like a baby!!

  8. I have never been to Disney World/Land – I can never remember which one is in California and which one is in Florida. I have heard it is amazing and a lot of fun.

  9. We’ve only ever been to Disneyland Paris and that was before we had my son. I remember being quite unbothered by the prospect but since we were in Paris we decided to go for the day. As soon as I saw that castle I totally switched and the magic grabbed me. When I saw the little mermaid during the parade (my favourite Disney film) I even found myself welling up a little. Hope to take my son one day x

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