Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Family Vacation 2016

We recently returned from our much-anticipated winter vacation to Florida.  I have blogged about our annual trips to Florida in the past but this time I am just going to share my favourite photos from this year's family vacation.

We traveled the last two weeks of January; we drive from wintery eastern Ontario to sunny central Florida.  This year's trip consisted of some unplanned events such as our van breaking down in Virginia (we spent a lovely day and a half near Richmond while we waited for a tow truck, waited for our van's prognosis and then waited to hear if it could be fixed quickly or not... we then rented a van to take us the rest of the way while our own van was fixed up for our return back to Canada) and then we also experienced cold temperatures and too much rain while we were in Florida.  Despite these challenges we had a blast! Time with our own little family is very meaningful to us and I look forward to our winter vacation all year long.

We are always on a mission to find the cleanest and nicest convenience stores long the way.
We keep track of all of them in our Florida notebook.

At 9 years of age, Alex has discovered an interest in sports cars.
He wanted his photo taken with this beauty!

This is where our adventures takes a turn...
 I was not happy but the kids certainly thought is was fun!
This was their first ride in a tow truck.

It was also our Toyota's first ride in a tow tuck!

The most exciting part of our road trip is finding a hotel for the night with a pool and if we
 are really lucky, we might also get a hot tub.

Getting the chance to play in a pool is a great way to burn off
energy after 10 or more hours of driving.
We drive 23-28 hours all the way to our destinations in Florida each year.

This year Jean couldn't wait to see palm trees.  Our little tree-huggers found this one in  Savannah Georgia.

Some years we stop at the Florida Welcome Centre to enjoy a cup of orange or grapefruit juice.
This year we also bumped into a couple from Arnprior that we know... a few years ago we met this same couple at the resort in Florida we were staying at.  It's a small world!

Finally... our destination at Walt Disney World.

Here are my favourite photos from Walt Disney World:

 Note:  Our kids (especially our oldest daughter, Grace) loved meeting the characters.  Honestly they know each one is an actor but they are soooo good at being in character!

One of our favourite things was just "happening" across a show... this happened quite often.

Jean is a big Minnie Mouse fan!

This photo was taken at Epcot, which was a fantastic day!  I love Epcot.
Just like the previous time we went, it is a much slower pace than Magic Kingdom
which is a welcome change.  This time we knew about Kidcot, a special hunt for the kids
to discover something new in each country in the World Showcase area. 
While searching, we roamed around all of the countries enjoying ice cream, music shows,
 demonstrations, and even beer. 
We also found a few Disney characters including Mary Poppins. 
The kids are each holding their collection of diagrams of the flags from each country. 

This is a picture of the kids with a character from the Hoop Dee Hoo Dinner Show.

It was a chilly morning at Magic Kingdom so it was nice to get a cuddle from Marie (Aristocats).
This might be my favourite photo from our Disney trip... it shows happy faces, the magical castle in the background and I just remember feeling very relaxed and content that day.  We visited Magic Kingdom twice because we wanted to see all of it without feeling overly rushed.
This is a view from part of the the ride "It's a Small World" which the kids totally loved.  This is a display of the Netherlands.

Grace was chosen to learn to be a pirate!

Another favourite ride:  Jean got to drive this time!

We saw a few Disney parades which do not disappoint!

This photo does not do this show justice!  The Lion King show at Animal Kingdom was AMAZING!

Jean (7 years old) took this photo of us.

We made a trip to the Lego Store (3rd time); notice the shopping bags!

Our Disney resort (Art of Animation) had a beautiful pool with music you could hear under the water. 
I found it much too cold to swim but there were kids in the pool most of the time.

The kids loved relaxing in our suite especially after they purchased their lego kits.

Mickey Pretzels

Jean lost a tooth (the second top one, no doubt) so a special Disney Tooth Fairy came for
a visit and brought her a charm bracelet (which she had been wishing for).

Most of our photos show us wearing warm clothing: scarves, sweatshirts, coats, pants... I was disappointed in the weather but it honestly didn't stop us from having fun.  We just bundled up and away we went. 

Next stop was Grandma and Grandpa's, just a two hour drive south of Disney.


  1. Looks like you had a great trip despite the weather, loved seeing the pictures you posted while you were away!

    1. Looking at these photos while writing this post was so nice... Makes me happy! Thanks for visiting!

  2. Cute pics! Glad you guys had fun!

  3. Looks like you had a great vacation.