Memorial Day weekend is kind of a big deal. It reminds us of people who gave their lives to serve our country- which is too huge for words. It’s also right around my Husband and my birthday, but this weekend wasn’t a big year 31 for me, 29 for him. It’s the weekend that pools and beaches open for business. Every year we go to Ocean City, MD to visit my parents and celebrate birthdays and the start of beach season. This year was also our first long-ish car trip with 3 kiddos (one who was only 9 weeks). I have to say trying to calm a baby in a car when you are waiting for a place to safely pull over to feed/change/cuddle is not fun! But aside from some normal beach traffic and normal fussiness it was still a normal trip. Nothing like THIS ONE!
I hope your Memorial weekend was filled with fun and reflection too!
Also known as the post about how to pack for 5 people over 5 days in a Mazda 5. There are plenty of people I l know who have traveled with tiny humans in a VW Jetta or a Ford Taurus.
In the trunk we have the beach bag, some food, the potty (which we will be leaving at the beach), and the picnic blanket.
I was able to fit the remaining items on the floor of the car where the other seat should be. It’s a perfect fit, and there was enough room for both boys to climb in on their own and step around the bags to get to their seats.
Ever since Maggie was born we have been driving the 5 with one of the captain’s chairs removed from its place. I asked the moms of 4 and 5 from Jack’s preschool and they RAVED about how easy things were when a seat was removed.
They are not wrong!!
We had such a blast in Disney World! ::doing the happy dance::
Thanks in large part to my neighbor who is a Disney expert. I want to do a vlog interview of her so she can share all her insane tips with you, but I don’t know if she’ll go for it- she can barely use facebook.
More to the point, here were her best tips that we agreed were super useful:
1. Don’t try to see and do everything. The Magic Kingdom has a million parks and attractions, if you try to do it all it’s too much, you’re going to hate it.
2. If you can swing the cost, stay in one of the hotels on the monorail. It’s pricy, but the ease of getting in and out of the park and to other activities is worth it, especially with small children.
3. Get the meal plan. The price of meals is high in the parks and at the other Kingdom restaurants, but with the meal plan you save on price. (Also- if you pay for a child’s meal plan they don’t care if you are buying a child’s lunch or an adult lunch, so you can get extra food, which you will need because you will walk A LOT!)
4. Make dinner reservations (or lunch reservations) especially if you want character dining. Make your reservations WAAAAAY in advance, otherwise you will have hour waits and you’ll be eating at 4pm or 9pm.
5. However many days you are there, DO NOT GO TO PARKS EVERYDAY. Remember about the walking? It’s exhausting! For us, we were there for 3 days so we planned to spend 1 day in the park, 1 day by the pool and the final day back in the parks again. We were so glad we followed my expert friend’s advice, because it rained on the 3rd day and would have been a miserable day to try to enjoy the park so at the last-minute we flip-flopped our plans and did the first 2 days in the park and the third day wandering around exploring the other hotels on the Monorail.
As an aside- by not trying to do everything we ended our trip not feeling burnt out, which is always nice, but we also felt like the Magic Kingdom has so much to offer we will have to go back to explore more. Since we had such a good time, we wouldn’t mind it if we had to go back!
There were plenty of rides that Henry was able to ride, sometimes he sat on the bench (like here riding “it’s a small world”) but for other rides, like Pirates of the Caribbean, he sat on someone’s lap so he could see.
We enjoyed catching a glimpse of Cinderella’s castle. When we sat down near the castle to enjoy our funnel cakes we heard the parade start, so we decided to go check it out. The park was so empty that morning, all the rides had 5 or 10 minute wait times and when we watched the parade there wasn’t anyone crowding near us to get a peek. We walked right up to the curb, claimed our little piece of real estate and enjoyed the show. Fantastic!
After Cape Canaveral we drove down to Vero Beach where we spent some quality time with my dad’s parents BoBo and Pops. We hung out on the beach.
Next up: Disney World!
When you have a kid as obsessed with space as Jack, it would be practically negligent to drive past Kennedy and not stop.
Rockets from various space missions. (For the Apollo moon missions they used a rocket called the Saturn V. They also used it for Skylab. Does your family have a big backyard drinking party to commemorate Skylab? Or is that just mine?)
There was even a Mars exploration display, which included the new Mars Curiosity rover. Which was featured in the Washington Post over Thanksgiving. (We had a hard time getting Jack to let go of the article.)
We drove to Florida last week. We visited my dad’s parents, BoBo and Pops. We saw Uncle Tom and Aunt Alba. We went to Kennedy Space Center. Then we rounded things off with a stop in Disney World.
I can’t wait to tell you about the fun we had and I’m going to have my Nerdy Husband geek-out about the technology we used to enhance our 2,000 mile road trip experience. Baltimore to Orlando and back was quite the journey!
I’m taking a vacation from blogging. We have a lot going on the next 2 weeks and we are going to be spending time with family so in the interest of sanity and getting enough rest I’m going to say goodbye until mid-January.
If anything really unbelievably huge happens (I cant imagine what on Earth that could be) I might be able to make an exception.