What I Love About Disney World – Anticipation

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I think our anticipation took my husband by surprise. After all, he told us, “I’ve been to Disney before”. HA! Yeah, so have I buddy.:)He went to Disney, years earlier and had what he thought was a fun vacation. The problem was that he thought since he had already been to Disney he didn’t have any reason to go back. He thought it was a one time thing. Been there, done that. Um. No. Like any good Disney fan, we all know how the motto really goes – Been there, done that, GOING BACK!!! It’s obviously a real thing – I have a Disney World magnet and a license plate holder that tell me this.

So approximately a year or so in advance we (I) started planning. I mean, how else is a person expected to pass the time while they wait for their dream trip to Disney to happen? Extensive planning helps pass the time. I don’t think he believed me when I told him I was going to pull the trigger on a hotel reservation. He certainly thought me buying airline tickets was a joke. He probably didn’t believe me that there were calendars to work on, price comparisons to be be done,  reservations to be made, spreadsheets to be created, deals to be found, height restrictions to note – you get the idea. 

THEN the magic day hits – the day you’ve been waiting for! NO, it’s not the day you leave for vacation! It’s the 180 days out mark. You can now wake up at the butt-crack of dawn (or better yet, email your personal concierge cast member and ask them to do it for you) to get on the phone with Disney and start calling in for your dining reservations. This may have been the moment when my husband thought for sure I had flipped my Disney lid. To explain to a non-Disney freak that yes, you are actually making a dinner reservation for a meal you will not eat for another 180+ days takes some fortitude. There may have been some eye-rolling from both of us. From him because he couldn’t believe this was a real conversation he was having and from me because I’m having to explain why this is so important.

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Back in the day, you’d arrive at the Magic Kingdom, walk to King Stefan’s Banquet Hall, ask for a lunch or dinner reservation and skip happily away a few minutes later with a cute little reservation card. That day is looooooong gone. Every now and then you might get lucky and have a last-minute, same-day reservation at the Castle  (and many other full-service restaurants) fall into your lap, but it is pretty much a rare occurrence. These days you are happy if you call on 180 days out and actually get through on the first try, much less hang up with your desired restaurant/date/time.

I love everysingleminute of this type of planning. I have also saved much of my past plannings from old trips. Old calendars, with days loosely planned. Restaurant receipts so I can look up the menu to see if my favorite meal is still offered. I’ve always said that planning a Disney vacation is (at least) half the fun of the actual vacation.  I love pouring over guidebooks with my villagers. I love to see their excitement as we watch the Disney vacation planning video showing them a little taste of the Magic we’ll be experiencing.

I love the anticipation.

What I Love About Disney World – The Contemporary Resort

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I know I’ve already mentioned that my true resort love is the Polynesian, BUT I love to visit the Contemporary. I love that it, along with the Poly, was one of the original hotels on the property – there is history here baby!

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I love that it was a vision of the future and now that that future is here, it’s still really cool. I love the feeling of shopping below in the Grand Canyon Concourse while the monorail whooshes in overhead. I could sit in the GCC for hours and just people watch – some are excited to be boarding the monorail, headed for the parks, others are leisurely strolling thru the shops, while some are headed up to the top floor to enjoy a meal at the California Grill. I don’t have any strong desire to stay here – maybe if my beloved were booked up – but it’s just got such a neat futuristic, yet vintage-y vibe going on that I just love being there.

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What I Love About Disney World – Winnie the Pooh Ride

Ok, so actually the ride The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh doesn’t do all that much for me, BUT I love it because it’s always COMPLETELY PACKED with people. Only once have I been unfortunate enough to experience this sleeper.

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I figure it deserves my love because it’s holding hundreds of people hostage in a snaking line and they are not in line ahead of me on a ride I actually like! It’s the little things.

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What I Love About Disney World – Rain

Do I love it or do I just decide to embrace it because it comes every day whether I like it or not?

I live in AZ. The hot, cracked, scorched, dry, barely ever rains, desert. So I guess it’s not all that unusual that rain is a novelty for me. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE bright, sunny, warm, hot days more than anything. It’s no accident I live in AZ. I used to live in the Chicago suburbs. Cold, gray, COLD, snowy, one nice day in May or June, blah, blah, blah. I moved to AZ for the weather. Period. I live in shorts, t-shirts and bare feet almost year round and that works for me.

But every now and then a rainy day is a nice break from the big, hot, flaming sunball in the sky.

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At Disney I enjoy a rainy break every now and then because it’s refreshing and washes everything off. I love how the walkways are all steamy right after an August afternoon shower. The best thing about a Disney downpour? It clears out the parks nicely. The masses grab their ponchos and run out of the park thinking their park time is over for a bit. Right about the time they are boarding the bus back to their resort, the rain magically stops and the sun comes out again.

You learn quick at Disney that an afternoon shower doesn’t last all afternoon. It might be over in 15 minutes. Grab a bite to eat, go on an indoor ride or do a little shopping. It’s all win-win if you wait it out. As soon as it stops – go hit some of the popular rides that temporarily shut down during the rain – you’ll probably be able to walk right on.:)

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