Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Orlando Vacation - Days 1 & 2

If you follow me on Instagram (@ashleyp2) you've seen that we took a little trip last week! We just got home Sunday evening and I think we are all still recuperating. It was a lot of work with an 8 month old, but probably my best vacation yet.

Benj and I had planned to take LK to the beach later in the summer after all the young kiddos were back in school. Benjie's work eased up last week so we decided to take an impromptu (that's how we usually roll) family trip. After we really talked about it, LK would probably only be able to stay at the beach for half an hour at a time (while eating sand), we just visited the outlet mall down there a few months ago, and you can't really go see a movie or ride the go-karts and all that jazz with an 8 month old... So basically the whole trip would be in the (non-baby-proof) condo.

So we did the unthinkable and made the decision to drive an extra 6.5 hours to Orlando (10 hours total). We invited my mom and she was SO much help. I don't think the trip would have been nearly as enjoyable if she hadn't been there. 

My next few posts will be documenting our trip. I have the memory of a goldfish so I want to get all of this down before I forget! If you aren't interested in hearing all the details, you may want to skip the next few posts! :)

- - - - - - - - -

DAY 1: The "drive"

My mom came down Saturday afternoon. We made a quick Wal-mart trip for a few snacks and baby things and she watched LK while I finished packing that night. I promise, when you have a baby, it will take an ENTIRE day to pack for a week-long trip! You have to think of everything! I am also the type of person that likes to come home from vacation to a spotless house so I cleaned all day Saturday as well. We were all in bed early and pulled out of the driveway at 6:30am Sunday morning. After driving about 3 hours, we met my grandparents along the way for some breakfast at Cracker Barrel.

(Little HAM.)

(She also got her toes painted for the first time... and I didn't have to fight her!)

I had been wanting some new Chacos (for the trip and my old ones have almost bit the dust) and  local places were sold out so I did a little research of places that had them in stock en route. It was great because I ended up getting them on sale AND had a $10 coupon! 

Z/2 Yampa Sandal

I'll go ahead and say that these are the best sandals if you want a tennis shoe alternative. I have a horrible back and these are AWESOME -- especially since we did A LOT of walking on this trip. I had problems breaking my old ones in (different style) but I only had one area on my left foot that was a problem (because one foot is 1/2 size larger than the other). I just made sure to stick a band-aid there that morning. Problem solved.

The rest of the drive there was great. LK hardly ever fussed. (Shocking to us all!) I downloaded plenty of Mickey Mouse on the iPad before we left and between cartoons, naps, bottles, and "Granny entertainment", she remained content and we were there in no time.

We stayed at a hotel in Orlando. If we had planned like most people do, it would have been nice to stay inside Disney and take advantage of the meal-plan... but it was nice to get away from all the chaos and "magic" at the end of the day.

(Little Spider Monkey)

We got to the hotel and unpacked everything. As we were freshening up and killing time until supper, Benjie surprised me and LK with sweet unexpected 'happies'. 

Lily Kate got a beautiful little diamond heart necklace! They have a special daddy/daughter bond and it was so sweet that he thought of her too. 

I got a DY ring and bracelet. I had been wanting a bracelet for a while but he totally surprised me with the ring. It was actually all a big surprise!!! We read The Five Love Languages a few years ago and one of Benjie's ways of showing love is definitely gift giving. I don't want to mislead everyone that it's materialism or just outright being spoiled. I wasn't raised that way! However Benjie has always been a very generous person when it comes to giving to other people -- and not just me. There's things that he wants (and I try my best to make sure that he gets them) but he'd rather buy someone a gift or treat them to dinner than buy things for himself. And to me, 'random acts of kindness' (a gift, a letter, whatever...) mean a whole lot more than a gift celebrating a special occasion. Let me also add that my husband CANNOT keep a surprise! He can't get my birthday/Christmas gifts extra early because he always gives them to me before he plans. I was shocked he actually kept this one a surprise!

Anyway - back to the trip! We ate dinner at a Hibachi restaurant across the parking lot and turned in early. I think we were all asleep by 9!

- - - - - - - - - 

DAY 2: Sea World

None of us had ever been to Sea World, so we decided to do it first since you get an extra "free day" to use (within 7 days) in case we didn't finish the park. I wasn't "blown away" by the park, but there were also things that we didn't (or couldn't) do with an infant. I think it'll be a lot more fun when our kids are older. 

(We didn't get either of these, but we like to play dress up.)

(She LOVED the fish!)

(I though this was funny - but if I played with dolphins all day, I'd probably "work until the day" too.)

(Her hair is super greasy from sunblock since we forgot her hat... and yes, Benjie toted her around in this carrier the majority of the trip. She never cried the first time when she was in it during the entire trip -- even 9:00 at night when she couldn't keep her eyes open!)

We saw a dolphin show, saw all of the turtles and fish, and even took advantage of their Baby Care center while it rained for about 20 minutes. We left the park about 4:00 and headed back to the hotel to change for supper. We ended up eating at Carrabbas down the road and made a Walmart run for some band-aids and sinus medicine. While we were there I also found LK some infant mouse ears (funny, I NEVER saw any baby mouse ears in the park!), a little Minnie, and a photo album book. (Definitely doing this in the future... it was half the price of the park shops!)

Yes, she kept her ears on! I was surprised! 

I also took this picture that morning and didn't realize what I had took until later that day! Hilarious! At the hotel we stayed at, they give you chocolate chip cookies at check in and obviously her Daddy had been sneaking her some. This face is priceless!

"What cookies? Mama, I have no idea what you are talking about."

I  will post soon with more of our trip! Day 3 was Animal Kingdom!


  1. Looks like you had an amazing time!!! Can't wait to hear more. Don't know if you've heard about it, but Band-Aid has a friction block that is supposed to work wonders for breaking in shoes and protect the feet!

  2. I have never heard of this friction block, but it definitely sounds like something I need! Thanks for telling me about it! :) And yes, we had a GREAT time! :)