I got invited to go along on the family vacation with my friends Meghan and Brendon, plus Meg's mother and her two children Katelyn and Benjamin.

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Thursday, May 2

[?] We stayed in this cabin in the Disney Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground.

[?] Once the gang got to the cabin and got unpacked, it was dinnertime, so fourteen-year-old Katelyn had to get five-year-old Benjamin to put on his shoes.

[?] This is Trail's End, the buffet restaurant where we went to relax and eat yummy food.

[?] It was a little rainy outside, but we braved it and waited outside for our reservation.

[?] Brendon tried to entertain Ben with the big checkers board.

[?] The only picture of ALL of us we took all vacation! We've finished eating our yummies here. It was a good Southern meal.

Friday, May 3

[?] Meg and Benjamin on the boat for our first park: EPCOT!

[?] And there's Meg, Benny, and Katie on the boat. All ready for a day of fun.

[?] Sure sign that we're here! EPCOT!

[?] We were hungry upon arriving, so while Meg watched Benny play in a play area, Katelyn and I picked up fish 'n' chips in the UK area of the World Showcase. Great as always.

[?] We decided to try to do some things I hadn't done before, so first stop was Canada. Here's a fake moose in the garden!

[?] The Canada buildings have a cool theme.

[?] We checked out the Canada movie, which was funny, and on the way in we saw this waterfall.

[?]   [?] Ben and I put our faces in these holes. Neither of us was tall enough to fill out the high one.

[?] One of the cool buildings we saw as we walked through the UK area of World Showcase.

[?] We saw the France movie too. It included beautiful music from French composers (including Debussy, yay!) with video of pretty stuff in France.

[?] [?] [?] Groovy buildings in the Morocco area, plus some bally things!

[?] [?] It's the Japan buildings! We didn't get to shop in Japan though. :( We did hear the great drummers as we passed by.

[?] By this point Benny had been asking for ice cream but wouldn't eat it unless it was the Mickey Mouse Ears kind, so we were holding out for finding it for him. In the meantime, we stood in line for snacks, and I caught this one of Ben being cute by the fence.

[?] We tried the Frushi. It was a lot better than you'd expect--really tasty! (Also got to try noodles, and little parfait things, and Meg and Katie tried a Moroccan pancake thing but didn't like it.)

[?] Here's me enjoying Frushi. It was so good Katelyn went back and bought another plate!

[?] We walked through the USA area, but didn't check out this ride or whatever. I still haven't seen it.

[?] Benny was checking out the view. What did he see?

[?] Maybe this pretty sight, huh?

[?] We moseyed through Italy and saw this fab architecture.

[?] This mini village in Germany has a train that runs through it. Ben liked seeing it.

[?] The actual buildings in Germany were neat too.

[?] Benny enjoyed playing with the drums at this kiosk.

[?] China has cool shapes on their buildings. We didn't go shopping here either.

[?] But we did get to see these sculpted pandas in the bushes!

[?] And then, Norway. We rode the Maelstrom ride, which involved floating on a boat through a river and learning about some Norwegian history and people.

[?]  [?]We did not get to hang out in Mexico because we had to head back to the other side of EPCOT for our date with Soarin', for which we had FastPasses.

[?] But we did finally manage to find Benjamin some Mickey ice cream. He was grateful.

[?] On our way back for the ride, we did get to stop at Club Cool for the soda samples!

[?] My cup of the Italian soda Beverly. People don't like it because it's sort of bitter, but I really dig it.

[?] Some girl in the Club Cool was taking selfies with her cell phone so I was inspired to try it too. I got this blurry picture of myself and didn't manage to get the soda in the picture. I suck.

[?] And Soarin' was great as always. We left after that to go rest, intending to come back for the Extra Magic Hours, but it rained, so we napped through it. ::sigh::

Saturday, May 4

[?] First stop on Saturday: Hollywood Studios! Aerosmith Rock 'n' Roller Coaster! (I warned my seat-mate that I scream a lot. I screamed a lot.)

[?] Next was the Tower of Terror. We saw this creepy statue when we were in line.

[?] Yep! We rode the elevator that suddenly drops you so your butt leaves the seat! I sat next to Meggie because she wanted to listen to me scream.

[?] And then we went to see the Muppets! Silly 3-D movie.

[?] One of the best things about the Muppets is that they give you silly things to laugh at if you pay attention.

[?] Here's Meg in line at Pizza Planet, where we got three personal pizzas to share with four people.

[?] And she also got this evil cupcake. It is from the Dark Side in more ways than one.

[?] Katelyn and Meghan eating their yum salads.

[?] We couldn't go to Star Tours right away because they were having technical difficulties, but Brendon tried this goofy thing on in the gift shop.

[?] It was sort of rainy off and on all day, so this was a good indoor ride for us. The Great Movie Ride is kind of boring to me, but the guides are silly.

[?] We also checked out this super awesome presentation on how characters are developed and the stages they go through before being finalized. The presenter was really cool and she told us that Star Tours reopened after being shut down all morning, so we hurried over.

[?] Oh yeah baby. We got on the ride pretty quickly and managed to get sent to the Wookiee planet as well as meet up with Yoda! (The ride is different every time you ride, so we didn't know who we'd see!)

[?] But then we were early for our reservations at the Sci-Fi Dine-In theater, so we waited outside. I didn't get any pictures of our cool car-themed table, but it was super cool and I had a veggie shepherd's pie. They show silly old movie clips inside and it's like a drive-in.

[?] Way cool Toy Story ride that lets you play little virtual carnival games and actually gives you a score! I didn't do well though. Haha.

[?] Sadly, this picture of me with Maleficent is pretty much unrecognizable because of the glare. But that's her in the window! Her finger looks like she's touching me on the shoulder.

[?] [?] Here are the villain-themed shopping places we checked out. I didn't find anything to buy, though. Waaah.

Sunday, May 5

[?] MAGIC KINGDOM DAY! Benjamin and I are on the boat. (We got chilly when the wind started blowing!)

[?] Meghan and Brendon were in front of us on the boat.

[?] Yay! Magic Kingdom sign!

[?] Ooooh. The lovely castle. I wonder how many millions of times this thing has been photographed?

[?] We ran on into Tomorrowland to get snacks and line up our FastPasses.

[?] We got pretzels at this snacky place.

[?] Here's Meg's family trying to decide what to do after pretzels.

[?] We ended up going on Stitch's Great Escape, which I didn't really care for because mostly you just sit in a seat all strapped in and nothing happens except they try to simulate Stitch being loose in the building, possibly up to mischief. It scared Benny because sometimes it was dark.

[?] This was part of the ride. Teleport center!

[?] Also in Tomorrowland we got to play Space Ranger Spin with Buzz Lightyear, which is another shooting game thing.

[?] And then we checked out the Monsters Inc. laugh floor! It's a little comedy presentation where the monsters try to make you laugh (and supposedly our laughter powers their monster city).

[?] Here's one of the very funny comedians. The whole thing was actually interactive--they talked to the audience, bounced off their answers, totally did improv. It might have been my favorite thing all day.

[?] Katie wanted to do the Haunted Mansion and we didn't think Benjamin would be able to take it, so we left him here at the Speedway with his dad.

[?] But he wasn't tall enough to drive his own car, so Daddy had to drive.

[?] We passed this tower on the way to the Haunted Mansion. I think it might be where Rapunzel lived.

[?] [?] While in line for the Haunted Mansion, Meggie and Katelyn and I played with the creepy things.

[?] Then we took a little boat ride past Tom Sawyer Island.

[?] Now we're into Adventureland, where some things are Old West themed or Pirate themed, and all very exciting.

[?] After meeting up with Bren and Ben again, we ate here at Pecos Bill Café. I had some tasty fries and some corn!

[?] Ooh, next we had to ride the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. I remember riding this when I was ten.

[?] Benjamin was super jazzed to get on the ride. He also demanded to ride next to me, and when it was over he was screaming to go on again. (We couldn't of course.)

[?] We had FastPasses for Big Thunder Mountain so we headed back over that way. We had to chill a while to wait for it to be time, but sitting down was nice.

[?] And there it is! The fun roller coaster. Benjamin loved it and was again yelling out to go again.

[?] But it was ice cream time. We'd been looking forward to this all day! Here's Katelyn and Meghan with their great confections.

[?] And I got a cookie sandwich with Tofutti ice cream. (It took a really long time to get it because they scoop it differently in case of people having dairy allergies. I'm just lactose intolerant.)

[?] We did a little shopping in this network of stores. I didn't buy anything but we wandered a long time.

[?] And here are Katelyn, Meghan, and Benjamin on the slightly chilly after-dark beach, where we headed immediately after leaving Magic Kingdom so we could watch some fireworks. (Katelyn even went back to the cabin on the bus to get that blanket for Meg and came back! She's the best daughter ever.)

[?] [?] [?] [?] [?] [?] [?] [?]
My pictures weren't very good, but those were the fireworks--far away across the water in the Magic Kingdom.

Monday, May 6

[?] Now for our last day: Ben and Grandma waiting for the Animal Kingdom bus!

[?] Ben at Animal Kingdom. The last park I hadn't been to!

[?] Looming in our future: Everest, the roller coaster. We got some FastPasses.

[?] This altar thing was super cool.

[?] [?] [?] There were monkeys climbing around!

[?] Bradley Falls, which is where I got noodles. The entire kiosk is vegetarian food.

[?] And here's Expedition Everest! A roller coaster similar to Big Thunder Mountain, so we thought Benny would like it. We didn't count on him getting spooked by the monster effects and going backwards in the dark.

[?] Ben hid under a cart later. He gave the above ride two thumbs down.

[?] At this "Tough to Be a Bug" presentation, we got "honorary bug" glasses and learned about how humans are always causing trouble for bugs, but there was a scary part with dry ice and hornets threatening us, so Ben got scared again.

[?] So we headed to Dinoland U.S.A., leaving Ben with his grandma so he could play in a play area.

[?] We went on to the Dinoland Institute.

[?] Benjamin wouldn't have liked the Dinosaur ride. There was roaring and some darkness. But we had fun! I liked the "sent-back-in-time" storyline.

[?] That dinosaur looks almost too happy. We sat around in Dinoland for a while while Meg took Ben to play some carnival type games.

[?] And Katelyn finally got to get a turkey leg!

[?] Meggie's treat was a chocolate-covered banana.

[?] [?] And Benjamin got Dibs. He's playing with the dinosaur he won at one of the games.

And that was it! After that Meg's mom took me home and I went back to my ordinary life. :)