Last weekend, I did something crazy.
(if you follow me on Instagram, you already know what it was, but go with me here)
I hopped outta town on a flight from the Shenandoah airport down to Orlando to hang out with my friend Morgan for St. Patrick’s Day + a day of Disney parks on Monday. At 4:30 AM Tuesday morning, I was waiting at the front of Saratoga Springs Resort (SSR) for a ride back to the airport – and made it back to work in VA for a half-day.
Whew! So, let’s go and relive that quick trip, eh?
The flight left at 10 AM, so I arrived in Orlando right around noon. After riding the airport monorail, I was headed down to the ground transportation level (just had a small duffle bag) and onto my Magical Express bus to Walt Disney World 🙂
By the time we reached SSR, I was bouncing off the walls excited! In no time, Morgan and I met up, then we walked over to the room, charged up our phones real quick, decked out our outfits with some green flair, then headed to Downtown Disney to start the celebration!
Green...had to take this pic! Rocked my green Team Sparkle, plus had my light up wand, tiara, ring and bracelet!!
We had gotten our $10 wristbands for Raglan Road (RR) access later, but we weren’t quite ready for dinner yet, so we headed over to Goofy’s Candy Company for a sweet treat! I had a Mickey-shaped krispie treat covered in chocolate and M&Ms…and as much as I love chocolate, I was only able to eat the ears before I reached max sugar overload! I saved the rest for the next day!
Next, it was time for some face paint!
Morgan and I had joked that we HAD to get face paint when we had read about the St. Paddy’s Day festivities…but once we saw the designs in action, we definitely had to make it happen! I picked a design called “Irish Eyes” and she had a custom one made based on the makeup artist’s personal creation!
After wandering around DTD a little more (and a stop at Little MissMatched) we headed back to RR for dinner. When we first approached the podium, we were told it could be an hour (or more wait)…but about 20 seconds later, the hostess looked back up at us and said, “or we could get you a hightop table now.” Now? That sounded great to us!
We were led to our table which was literally in the middle of the room, around the dancing stage and the music stage. Score!
Dinner was great (I had the burger – sooo good, and Morgan had risotto) and we enjoyed the atmosphere for a while, before deciding that it was probably a good time to skedaddle before it got too rowdy! So we boated back to SSR to drop off some of our gear then head to the Magic Kingdom!
Stepping into the park that night just felt surreal for some reason – I couldn’t believe that I was in a skirt, bare legs and just a jean jacket after leaving snowy VA that morning. FABULOUS! We made a beeline to meet Mickey Mouse and the Princesses first, then just wandered the park, gleefully!
We hit just one ride that evening – the Peoplemover! It’s not that the lines for attractions were long (because surprisingly, they were not) but we were just having a ball basking in the MK glow. I did, however, request a visit to one of my most favorite new places in the park: Storybook Circus, where we met Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck!
After that, I saw the new Castle projection show, Celebrate the Magic – that was spectacular!! I tried to take a few pictures but it just didn’t do the spectacle justice so I put the phone down and just enjoyed. Feeling magically rejuvenated, we headed back toward the new Fantasyland expansion to take in a sort of 360 degree viewing of Wishes!
The park was going to be open for another hour (+) longer, but we decided to head back (after a quick stop at the Contemporary to pick up that Pineapple Rum cupcake from Contempo Cafe) so we’d have an early start the next morning…sure enough, I slept like a rock before rising at 6 AM for a pre-park day run to DTD (see my post about that on Outrunning the Monorail) and then jumping on the bus to make it to MK to see the morning show…
…then grab breakfast at Kona Cafe!
Now, that Tonga Toast gets all the attention (and rightfully so) but I was in the mood for something savory that morning, and this was it: Poached Eggs with Hollandaise served over Smoked Pulled Pork Hash. Soo good!
Then, it was off to Epcot! We were on a mission to get the stamps in the new Flower and Garden Festival passports AND participate in the Easter Egg hunt. After we picked up the special maps and stickers at World Traveler, we started around, counter clockwise and wandered from country to country.
I absolutely love the World Showcase, so this was just a dream come true…not only was the weather beautiful, but it was a Monday and instead of being in the office, I was traveling from country to country, snapping pictures and search for Easter eggs. What a life.
Now, I took pictures in nearly every country, but in an effort to keep this post flowing, I’ll skip to Mexico because I was FINALLY able to achieve a bucket list experience…trying the Avocado Margarita (back story here). YAHOO! It was worth the wait!
After a little more meandering and a ride on Spaceship Earth (and completing the hunt, and our passports) we were ready to head to Disney’s Hollywood Studios to continue the fun…and who did we see out there, but Tinkerbell! What a surprise 🙂
We enjoyed the walk over to the park – we had to real objectives, other than to take some photos of Gertie for Theresa, see Fantasmic and have another cupcake (we weren’t sure if the seasonal cupcake would have switched over to the Easter one or would still be the St. Paddy’s Day one). We did enjoy two attractions as well: The Great Movie Ride (side note: I have STILL not seen the Bandit version!) and Star Tours.
Turns out, the St. Paddy’s Day Cupcake (chocolate cupcake with green peppermint buttercream) was the winner – we picked it up at the Backlot Express (we had NO idea that Starring Rolls closed so early – 4 PM!) and thoroughly enjoyed it after our pseudo sugar-detox dinner there (veggie sandwich for me, salad for M).
We rounded out our evening with Fantasmic and I enjoyed it immensely, having not seen it in YEARS (yet another item I had planned to do during Marathon Weekend, but didn’t get around to doing that trip). It really was wonderful, and now I am even more excited about potentially seeing it at Disneyland in September!
But like all good things, this trip was coming to an end quickly…we were pretty tired from an action-packed day and my wake up call for 3:45 AM was looking rather grim…so back to SSR it was!
Before we hit the sack, my BFF Matthew popped over to say hi – which really was the icing on the cake for this trip 🙂
In hours, I was back on that bus…and hours later, back to my desk at work…and although it was just 44 hours, it was a fantastic escape from reality. I know that it’s not possible for everyone to do, but I’d highly recommend this – wherever your happy place is – to clear your mind and just be happy.
You’ll thank yourself for it!
If you could escape to anywhere for 44 hours, where would it be?