OK, so you could definitely say we’re seasoned WDW travelers.  We’ve breezed through security (with a stroller, I might add), skipped through terminals, swung around poles in air buses and boarded first on our way to the World, but I have to say…I was a little nervous on this particular “day one.”  On every other trip, my mom’s always been my right hand with the kids.  There was always someone to take Stitchy-Poo to the bathroom, grab a snack or wait with the kids while I picked up this or that.  Well, my darling mother wasn’t joining us until the middle of our trip, leaving me to traipse through three airports with the kids on my own!  I was a little worried.  However, with mom’s homemade breakfast in hand, we made it through security rather uneventfully and down to our gate almost half an hour before boarding.  It was a very full flight, but half of the passengers were uniformed military, and that put this always partially anxious flier at ease.  I don’t know why…I mean, probably not much they can do if the plane is going down, but growing up in a USMC family, a military presence is just reassuring.

Both flights were rather uneventful, thank goodness.  We arrived at MCO, and once we were there and Disney took over, I knew we were fine.  Well, until we got halfway to the airbus and realized HBelle had left her mouse ears on the plane.  I could have melted into the floor.  I had specifically asked both kids to look everywhere for their things.  Somehow they missed a neon pink zebra striped Mickey hat.  So, after that 20 minute detour, we were somewhat back on track.

Now, I guess we’d just been lucky in years past, but we got down to the DME lines, and it was horrific!!  Disney is king of winding lines, and this was no different.  It was already hot and humid, and of course I had my hair down (and straightened!).  Wouldn’t you know, though, we were on the second bus outta there.  Not too bad.

I will say, I’m a sucker for the welcome video they play on the way to WDW.  It really gets me pumped up for the trip.  On the other hand, the back to the airport movie is just about the most depressing thing ever.  Anyway, back to the trip.  For the first two nights, we were trying out the Wilderness Lodge for the first time.  I was really excited to try a new place, but the first DME stop was the Polynesian, and I got a slight twinge of jealousy as a family deboarded and walked into Disney paradise.  I comforted myself with the thoughts of our castle view in a few days.  Spoiled?  Maybe, but I love my Poly!!

One more stop at the Grand, and then we were on our way to the Lodge!!  I love that feeling when you’re almost there.  I relished the slight panic to “gather all your belongings” as I fumbled in my almost too small WDW Dooney for a couple singles to tip the driver.  We were met downstairs by a cute Australian boy who escorted us to the seventh floor for club level check-in.  Unfortunately, our room wasn’t ready yet, but we did arrive in time for afternoon snacks in the lounge.  The kids loaded up on Goldfish (after not eating any that I had actually paid for on the plane) and gummy bears and we plopped in front of the huge window overlooking the courtyard, pool and lake.  I breathed a sigh of relief.  We made it!!  All by ourselves!  I know, I know, nothing huge, but it still felt good!

Up next: Wilderness Lodge!
Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start!