Sunday, January 13, 2008

Chanukah and Disney World

After our whirlwind month of action-packed weekends, we started December off with a trip to see Dave's relatives in New York for Chanukah, followed immediately by a trip to Disney World with Dave's immediate family. We flew into New York City on Friday night, and stayed over at his aunt and uncle's near the city. We then headed to Walden (a small town where Dave's grandparents live) to meet up with the rest of Dave's extended family on Saturday, and had a Chanukah party that evening with various relatives.
Chanukah gathering on Saturday night at Dave's grandparents.

Sunday morning was mainly spent packing and getting ready to head off to Florida, but we managed to fit in a bit of time for Natasha to try on Dave's grandmother's wedding dress.
Natasha got changed back into a more travel-friendly outfit, and we all headed off to catch our flight to Orlando. After spending the evening getting settled into our new home – the French Quarter district of the Port Orleans resort – it was time to start exploring Disney World!
Natasha, Lily and Dave in front of the Magic Kingdom castle.

The first day was spent at the Magic Kingdom, doing lots of “must-do” Disney things – posing with characters, going on rides like “It's a Small World” and the Mad Hatter's Teacups, and seeing the various parades on Main Street, USA.
Dave's dad and Lily with Cinderella's less popular relatives!
The Irish part of "It's a Small World"
Dave's parents bought us appropriate wedding headgear!

We finished the day with a spectacular night-time Spectro-magic parade, followed by fireworks over the castle.

The next day we headed off to EPCOT.
The main event was a Princess Lunch where Dave's niece (and the rest of us, of course) got to meet various Disney princesses, such as Belle and Cinderella.
Natasha was almost as excited about Cinderella as Lily was!

Dave and Natasha spent most of the rest of the afternoon waiting on line for a hang-glider simulation ride (but we're not bitter), and also got to check out some of the agricultural research projects going on at EPCOT, which was a highlight for Natasha. We spent the evening wandering around the various countries of EPCOT and we got to meet some characters from Winnie the Pooh. We finished off the evening with a movie about Canada hosted by Martin Short.
Natasha gets friendly with Eyeore.
Dave gets tough with Tigger.

Our last day was more low-key – we spent the morning back at the Magic Kingdom going on a few more rides (Thunder Mountain, Pirates of the Carribean), and Natasha and Dave got their picture taken with Mickey himself.
That afternoon, while Dave's family took a quick trip to the MGM Studios theme park, Dave and Natasha spent a relaxing afternoon hanging out by the pool back at the resort – reading, swimming, watching lizards chase each other, etc.
Dave's mom and Lily hang out with us for a bit.

The next “morning”, we got up at 2:45 am so we could get on a shuttle bus back to the airport, and catch our 6 am flight back to Edmonton. Fortunately, our flights went smoothly, we made our connection, and our car even started after a week of sitting in the Edmonton airport parking lot.

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