Friday, February 28, 2014

Granny and Granddaddy live at Disney World

We live about 600 miles away from Amy's family.  Which means we are 600 miles from our two granddaughters.  It seems we either see them at their house or we get together with them at Walt Disney World. We were with them there last this past November.  And of course, since we normally stay in a 2 bedroom unit at Disney's Old Key West Resort, our house always looks the same to the girls.  To them Old Key West IS Granny and Granddaddy's house. growing up disney
Disney's Old Key West Resort - Granny and Granddaddy's house
 As the Fourth Generation of our Disney family, even though Tink and Minnie have not quite turned 5 and 3 yet have already been to Walt Disney World several times.

 Tink, the oldest, has been 7 times and Minnie has been 5 times.  The girls do not know how lucky they are to have been to WDW so many times.  Both girls love all the Disney Princesses.  And when at home you can find them dressed in one of their many Princess dresses. growing up disney
Tink and Minnie dressed as Snow White - November 2013

Tink has started recording videos on Amy's iPhone and Amy has sent some this week.  The one that prompted this post came Thursday.  She said she wanted to live at Disney World forever with Granny and Granddaddy.  The girl is making plans.  She even said what she wanted to wear.  Amy asked her who would she live with.  "Granny and Granddaddy" came the response.  Amy told me she guessed Tink thought that is where we live. growing up disney
Video Capture of Tink asking to come to see us at Disney World

While we don't live there, we are there about twice a year.  Of course if Mom ever wins the lottery, there is always Golden Oak.  Then Tink and Minnie could come stay with Granny and Granddaddy at their home in Golden Oak.  I've got a floor plan picked out all ready. growing up disney
Tink and Minnie with Granny and Granddaddy
The picture above was from November 2013.  Tink and Minnie with us at our Home at Walt Disney World.

I'm ready to go back.  How about you?
Girls, we're home!


The first Generation of our Disney Family.  Amy's Grandparents - the original Granny and Granddaddy. They are both gone, but never forgotten.
Amy's Granddaddy - 1997

Amy's Granny - 1997

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Photo Flashback! 1973 Magic Kingdom Parade

I love posting some of our old Walt Disney World pictures.  These are a few of a set of slides we received from my wife's aunt.  These were taken by her uncle in June 1973.  Back then only The Magic Kingdom was open and crowds were not near what they are today.  
Growing up Disney
Uncle Scrooge - 1973
I do not remember seeing Pluto and Goofy driving around in Herbie the Love Bug.  Herbie made his big screen debut in 1968 so he was still brand new to Disney when these were taken.

Growing up Disney
Pluto and Goofy - 1973
And of course it amazes me at the OPEN SPACES they had to drive around in Herbie.

Growing up Disney
I didn't know they could drive!!
I think Walt Disney World has always had a parade and this Mine Train float is a far cry from what you see in the Magic Kingdom today.

Growing up Disney
1973 Parade Float
Four more of the Seven Dwarfs in Fantasy Land.  It looks like a few more people are watching here.

Growing up Disney
1973 some of the Seven Dwarfs in a Parade
I have been going to Walt Disney World since it opened in 1971 and have shared a lot of our old photos here on Growing Up Disney.  I hope you enjoy looking at these from 1973.


Focused on the Magic

Friday, February 21, 2014

Minnie Moms: I Can't Wait for My Child to...

I asked our Minnie Moms to share Walt Disney World experiences that they look forward to sharing with their children.  As always, they responded with some terrific ideas!

Corby:  I've always wanted to stay at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort with my kids. Well, truth be told, maybe it's been more of a dream for ME, but regardless, it's been on my wish list for a long time. I finally got a quick trip booked (only way I could afford it) before sailing out on a cruise soon. I'm really looking forward to it. I wanted to do My Disney Girl's Perfectly Princess Tea Party (well, not me for my 3 year old daughter) but since we are so restricted on time, and this trip is already over budget, we decided to do the afternoon tea at Grand Floridian's Grand View Tea Room instead. I'm sure it will be a treat with the whole family but the Princess Tea is still on my list! I know my daughter would absolutely love it and seeing the look on her face would be worth it all!

Another thing I have on my wish list that my son and I talk about quite often is doing an Adventures by Disney tour to Europe. My husband has no desire to travel abroad but it's been a dream of mine since college. My hope is when my son is a little bit older, we'll make it a mother-son trip. I will make it happen one day!

Danielle:  The topic for this month is what I would like for my kids to do/see in Walt Disney World. Both of my children are young so, of course, there is plenty that they have yet to experience. We are actually headed to the World next week, and both kids have both hit a height milestone! New rides like Tower of Terror, Space Mountain, and Soarin' are in store, and I can't wait! It will be so nice for the four of us to board one of Disney's finest thrill rides together!

However, what I most want my kids to see during future visits to the World is the magic that surrounds them. Our Disney trips now are wonderful. My kids light up when they greet their "friends" (characters), dance along to the parades, and get excited dining at a restaurant where they believe Mickey is their chef! I hope their amazement lasts forever, and that our family vacations will always be as magical. But, kids grow up. I'm sure we will be bound to endure a sort of "too cool" stage where hanging out on a buddy's couch seems more appealing to them than does a trip to Disney with their parents. My hope is, though, that somewhere in between all that growing, my kids will still be willing to take time out of their budding social lives to remember the magic, whether it be a little bit of awe upon seeing Cinderella Castle for the first time that vacation, having our matured family photo taken with our old friends at Character Spot, or just waving their napkins with us at Chef Mickey's. That's what I want for my family in the future: for my kids to continue to want to share and make memories with us in Walt Disney World...At least every once in awhile.

Janine:  One thing I still really want to do with Tink is see Wishes. Tink is an early riser and even though she's been to WDW twice now, we've never made it out late enough in Magic Kingdom to see the show. I know she would love it as she does enjoy fireworks and Wishes is my favourite night time experience at Disney by far. As we don't have any plans to return now until she is a little older, it'll be top of my To-Do list, and we might even make it extra special by booking something like the Wishes Dessert Party.

Natalie:  If you have older children, you may be looking for something special to dowith that child. Recently, I found out that Disney does something quite special for children ages 4-12 called the WDW Pirate Adventure Cruises for Kids! Children who are signed up head to the appropriate resort to board a Pirate Ship. Kids are given bandanas and temporary tattoos to help them become a pirate for the day! While on the boat, the children are required to wear a life vest. Once onboard, the children take a pirate oath and take sail for their adventure.

There are 4 adventures to choose from as follows:

1. Disney's Pirate Adventure - Sailing in the Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon. On this adventure, children read "The Legend of Gasparilla"-a real Florida pirate. This adventure departs from the Marina at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.

2. Islands of the Caribbean Pirate Cruise - Sailing the Ports of the Caribbean waters. Children will hear stories of Old Port Royale and its pirate-laden past. Sail away on this adventure from Barefoot Bay Marina at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort.

3. Albatross Treasure Cruise - Sailing across Cresent Lake and EPCOT's World Showcase Lagoon, children hear "The Legend of the Albatross" and search for pirate booty. Adventures sail from Bayside Marina at Disney's Yacht Club Resort and Disney's Beach Club Resort.

4. Bayou Pirate Adventure - Sailing down the Sassagoula River, the young pirates listen to legends of Captain Jean Lafitte-one of the most infamous pirates ever to sail in the waters of New Orleans. Adventures depart from the Fishin' Hole on Ol' Man Island at Disney's Port Orleans Resort-Riverside.

The times for the adventures are daily from 9:30 - 11:30. The children must be dropped off and picked up on time by their care provider. Once the children are on their adventure, they will hunt for treasures! They are asked to wear comfortable shoes so they can help in the search of the treasure. Once the treasure has been found, the treasure is split up among those on the adventure. Then the children will be given a snack of goldfish and apple juice.

I just booked my son to take one of these adventures! The cost is $39.41 and must be guaranteed with a credit card. You can cancel the reservation one day ahead of time, if needed. If you want to book your own adventure too, call 407 WDW PLAY!

Amy:  There are many Disney experiences I am looking forward to sharing with my children as they grow up.  One that I've been waiting for since the ultrasound techs said "It's a girl!" is afternoon tea at the Grand Floridian.  This is one of my favorite things to do at Walt Disney World.  I love to escape the midday heat and crowds of the Magic Kingdom by popping over to the Grand with its cool, calm lobby.  My mom and I have decided the girls can each have her first tea with Granny at the age of 5.  Tink will reach this magic age in April so I'll be able to make reservations the Garden View Tea Room on our next vacation.  By the way, the tea room doesn't have an age requirement but we set this age for us.  It would be a shame to have to hurry through tea because your toddler got antsy.  And as regular guests, it's nice to spread out the activities and special events so that we always have something to look forward to.  

Many thanks to Corby, Danielle, Janine and Natalie for sharing their stories!   Please check out our Minnie Moms page for past articles and more information about this terrific team. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Photo Flashback! The Letter T

Tiki Room and Tower of Terror are two of my favorite Ts at Walt Disney World. However as I prepared this post, I pulled photos from a trip my girls and I took in January 2013 with my best friend. I hope you enjoy these Disney Ts.

Traveling like champs
T-shirts customized for the trip
Traditional shot
Total mess
Tough girl who had to visit the ER on vacation
Tired kiddos
Tiara & the custom Tees
Teddy bear
Trying something new
Terrific Uncle Chris
Twinkling lights, with Shelley Caran's cutie pie daughter
TV while waiting for Magical Express
Tiny…I can't believe how much they have grown this past year

Focused on the Magic

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Photo Flashback! Disney Love

For Valentine's Day I don't have to think any further than my wife of 40 years to find my Disney Love.

Mom and DisneyDad 1973
We went to Walt Disney World on our honeymoon in December 1973 and have made many trips back since then.  We celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary by having dinner at Cinderella's Royal Table inside of Cinderella Castle.

Of course when I think Love after our wedding I think of Amy's.  She has shared many photos of her wedding here on Growing Up Disney. (enter Wedding in the search box to find all her posts or click <here to see her Five Photo post.)

Mom and DisneyDad in 2005
Above is Mom and I at Amy's wedding.  This photo was taken at the Grand Floridian before her wedding at the Wedding Pavilion at Walt Disney World in 2005. 

Mom and DisneyDad with the girls 2013

November 2013 was our most recent trip to Walt Disney World.  Above is Mom and I with Tink and Minnie at Old Key West.  

Fourty years of Love and Magic.

Happy Valentine's Day

Disney Love
Focused on the Magic

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Photo Flashback! Love Gone Wrong

Haunted Mansion, black widow bride

Deb at Focused on the Magic suggested "February Calendar Shot" for today's post.  Since Valentine's Day is this month, love was my first thought.  Or in this case, love gone wrong.  The attic scene in the Haunted Mansion is filled with portraits and wedding gifts from Constance's many weddings.  Somehow men kept losing their heads over her.  

Focused on the Magic