Sunday, October 12, 2014

Exhausting. Hot. Magic.

Miss D's birthday weekend at Disney was a rousing success, and we're all in agreement that we want to do another weekend, as soon as it's not so effing hot. I'm thinking January. (No, seriously. I'm thinking January would be perfect.)

It was really effing hot. And crowded! OMG, it was hard to remember it's mid-October; the crowds, heat and humidity all felt like July. That's why there are so few photos of the happy birthday celebrants; I looked, as my son-in-law put it accurately, "Like I'd been pulling weeds all day." He was not being unkind, and I didn't take offense. It was a perfect description! My face was beet red and I had sweat dripping from the ends of my hair, like a lawn sprinkler. I did look like I'd spent the day in manual labor in the sun. I really didn't need to have this immortalized on Facebook. ;-) The birthday girl was a total trouper all weekend, never flagging, never having a meltdown, but her hair was plastered to her head and her face was bright pink. She was still beautiful, of course, but a sweaty sort of adorable.

Last night was moderately cool; mid-70s, with a bit of a breeze and not so humid. We met up at the park around 7, and scrounged some dinner. My first choice for dining was inexplicably closed, so we had to punt, and ended up at a place that promoted itself as all chicken and burgers. Nonetheless, I had a very tasty veggie burger, and my resourceful son-in-law found a wide variety of veggie burger toppings and made himself a free makeshift salad; healthy food was not hard to find.

Then it was time to grab a spot for the Main Street Electrical Parade. Again, my resourceful son-in-law found a nice spot in Frontierland, where Delaney could stand on a wall and see over the crowd, with us behind her for safety. She ADORED it. Please forgive my crappy cell phone photos. I didn't drag the real camera along on this trip, for the "Nobody really needed to be immortalized in our hot sweaty state," reasons. Miss D, of course, was Fabulous. So was her mother. I don't know where she learned to always be camera-ready (definitely not from ME) but she just IS. Bitch. :-)

The MSEP was just as magical as I remembered (repeats crappy cell phone photo disclaimer). It's glorious, and the Birthday Girl was thrilled:

After the parade, we made our way back toward the carousel, and discovered it was closed until after the fireworks. We took a potty break at the restrooms behind the carousel, and the fireworks were starting as we emerged. It turned out to be a really fantastic place to watch them, and it was also a moment of Disney Magic, which I'll save for another post, because I'm exhausted.

Speaking of exhausted, note the thousand yard stare on the birthday girl here, at going on 11 p.m., or, in other words, 12 hours into Day One of her party:

Though they took her back to the hotel in the afternoon, she of course did not nap. This child cannot miss a thing, and fights sleep with remarkable vigor, but even she was giving out by nearly midnight. Her mom (who looks just delicately dewy, not sweating like a pig, and has perfect posture after 12 hours in a theme park, the bitch) and I were on either side of the party girl, lest the motion of the merry-go-round (she corrected us every time we called it a carousel) finally put her to sleep and send her sliding off her horse. It didn't.

Grandma got home from the park after midnight, and after dealing with dogs and what have you, got to sleep at nearly 2 a.m. I was up at 7 this morning for the Actual Birthday Day, which was, again, magical.

Disney knows how to do birthdays. My daughter was charmed that the bus driver taking them to the Magic Kingdom last night had the entire bus sing "Happy Birthday" to Delaney when he learned it was her birthday weekend. They issued her a birthday button to wear on her shirt, and she was inundated with birthday greetings.

This morning was the Character Breakfast at the Grand Floridian. It was, as any kid event will be, noisy, and hardly fine dining, but the buffet was lavish, quantities were endless, and it was all tasty. And the characters, when they learned it was her birthday, made Miss D feel very special indeed:

She is dressed as Alice in Wonderland, which made this Grandma very happy. I've been saying for two years that this child has to be Alice at least once, before she's hopelessly into something trendier.
Her costume got many compliments; one woman asked if someone had made it for her. My daughter said, "Amazon." Weeks back, A Mighty Girl shared a link to fabulous Halloween costumes for girls (think Amelia Earhart, not Barbie) and though many of them were for bigger girls, the link led to this: Toddler Alice Costume The quality is outstanding; it's a real dress, not some cheap (in quality, not price) "Halloween costume" thing that will rip before a day is over. It's real, breathable cotton, not polyester, and she was gushed over everywhere she went, all day. Parade characters came to the sidewalk to greet her and wish her a Happy Birthday. Truly, the Disney Magic was strong this weekend.

Needless to say, Alice spent some time chatting with her at the Character Breakfast, about how confusing it might be, and maybe people will start calling Delaney "Alice," and call Alice "Delaney" - and it was a lengthy and charming interaction.

I'm a lousy blogger, I really am, because when I'm doing these things I'm sharing them with my granddaughter, not focused on taking perfect pictures to share with my vast blog audience (cough, cough). Again, apologies for the lame pictures that don't begin to show the fabulousness; they weren't carefully composed and staged. I was too busy listening to the conversation between Alice and her tiny doppelganger to realize that there was a paper cup of milk with a straw in the frame.

At the end of the day, as we were making our exhausted, dehydrated, sweat-stained exit from the park, a total stranger stopped us again, to tell my daughter how Miss D really does look like a tiny Alice in Wonderland:

Yes. Yes, she does.


Jane said...

What a marvelous description of a wonderful weekend! Thanks for sharing with us!

k said...

I'm a photographer, and I totally forget to take pictures a lot. They're wonderful, especially the last picture. What an amazing birthday party.

Karen said...

There's no place better than Disney for magical moments like these!

Catherine said...

It really was great. If it had been 10 degrees cooler with less humidity, it would have been storybook perfect, but, hey, this is Florida.