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Where Memories are Made?

February 28, 2012 - Steve Schulwitz
Walt Disney World's slogan is "Where Memories are Made," and after spending nearly a week visiting the world famous "wonderland," I have to admit the slogan couldn't be more accurate. The only problem is it doesn't tell you what kind of memories you will take home with you. For me it was a mixed bag.

My wife and I, along with our two children, my parents, and my sister and her two kids planned the trip for almost a year, and for the most part things went fairly well. There were many good memories made, but it seems there are just as many memories that could have stayed in Florida due to stress and sore feet.

It was the first time any of us had ever been to Disney, and we had done our appropriate fact finding to help us be as efficient and economical as possible. For some things it works, for others it didn't. The main problem was none of the kids were on the same meal schedule. Some preferred to eat breakfast, while others didn't. So each day, like clockwork, you could count on hearing an "I'm hungry" almost immediately after being allowed to enter the park when it opened. Because we were trying to stay together as a family, we would find a seat and wait for the food and keep our fingers crossed that the meal served would be adequate enough for the children in our group who are finicky, to say the least. More often than not, it wasn't.

The service was amazing, and it was the cleanest place I have ever seen. I think we covered the parks well and took in everything we hoped. We used the express passes to shorten our wait in lines for popular attractions, and because my father was disabled and utilizing a scooter, we were often ushered to the front. We had the best seats for the shows as well because of this.

By the third day there, however, my feet were ready to fall off and as a result my patience dwindled and trivial things seemed to become dire issues. I think it is safe to say we all were equally as cranky, but we battled through it and the kids survived Steve's wrath. All except my niece, who was scolded and whose attitude improved afterward because of it.

For the last several days we broke our days up. We would go to one of the parks in the early morning and then in the early afternoon return to the resort for a swim or a quick nap. Feeling somewhat refreshed we would hop the bus and finish our park visit. I think this helped calm some of the tension, which was beginning to boil to the surface.

I have many more stories I could share that would scare anyone thinking about taking their children to Disney into changing their minds, but the experience was worth every penny when all is said and done. To be able to see my mother's face light up with seeing Cinderella's Castle for the first time, to going on roller coasters with my step-daughter Jade, there were special memories made that will be talked about forever.

So all in all the experience was something every family should do at least once, and do your best to only bring home the good memories and not those created because the chicken nuggets taste funny.


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