Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort Tour Family Vacation 2017

Check out a video of our tour of the Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort 2017

 

QUICK TIP:  If it is your first time staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge and you go out to the parks, as you hop onto the Disney Transportation System bus for a ride back – * take note as to where the bus will drop you off.  If you are staying in Jambo House the bus usually stops at Kidani Village first and then Jambo House.

 

Click HERE for my full article review of the Animal Kingdom Lodge

Click HERE for a tour of the Art of Animation Resort 

Click HERE for money saving tips for a Walt Disney World Vacation  $$$$$

Immunity Defenders for Traveling

My Favorite Natural Ways to Prevent Illness Before and During Travel

Also good for use during cold and flu season.

When I am preparing for a big vacation, like Disney World, (or even a small getaway) I always take extra precautions to try to avoid sickness or at least weaken the severity of it.

Here are some of my favorite tips on immunity defense:

Essential Oils

Essential Oils are just so amazing  providing aid in several topics naturally.

When I’m preparing to go away, about 2 weeks prior I start applying Immunity Oils to the feet and sometimes spine of my children, myself and my husband.

My favorite immunity oils are Thieves and Frankincense.  I like to apply these to feet nightly, starting 2 weeks before the vacation and all throughout the duration the vacation.  If we are flying, I definitely apply 2 drops to the soles of our feet and spine before arrival to the airport.  Frankincense is very expensive so I only like to use that for BIG trips and if an unfortunate occurrence of getting sick during the vacation (and of course during extreme illnesses during the winter.)

Frankincense is also very good for anxiety.  My other favorites for anxiety are Peace and Calming and Stress Away.  Both are very good for the stress of a trip and the anxiety beforehand.  You can also put a few drops of Peace and Calming and Stress away onto the soles of the feet before and during vacation.  For flying anxiety apply both to wrists prior to departure.  I like to make a roller with 10 drops Peace and Calming, 10 drops Stress Away and 10 drops Frankincense, filling the rest of the bottle with Fractionated Coconut Oil to stick in my backpack/purse for any unexpected TANTRUMS and MELTDOWNS that can happen to children or adults during trips! 

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For motion sickness, and congestion/allergies drop 1 drop of Peppermint to chest and 1 drop to stomach. Peppermint also has excellent anti-viral qualities and some believe a few drops on the soles of your feet will reduce fever!

For congestion apply 2 drops of Eucalyptus Globulus to the chest.  If I feel a sore throat coming on, I immediately rub Thieves all over my throat when going to bed.

Heaven Forbid you get some traveler’s diarrhea, or virus, put a few drops of Peppermint onto stomach and put 3 drops of Frankincense on your spine and 2 drops of Thieves onto your feet twice a day. ** Also, if you get the full blown stomach virus, any liquids lost you should keep replenishing with Pedialyte / Smart Water / Gatorade – even if it keeps coming back up and out… trust me – it will help you fight it off faster and stop you from becoming severely dehydrated.  We don’t need any trips to the ER when we are away trying to have fun!

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There is a lot of debate on purity and quality when choosing to purchase from Young Living vs Bed Bath Beyond.  Personally when it comes to Thieves and Frankincense I always buy directly from Young Living.  Sometimes for Peppermint I just grab from Harmon’s or Walmart since its so much cheaper and more convenient.  Harmon’s also has a nice brand with Calming and Good Night for sleeping at night – that my kids now cannot go to sleep without.

(BTW – I would never NOT see a DR or ER if it’s necessary – sometimes you need antibiotics to help you get better. These types of things won’t help kill off a bacterial infection – just ease symptoms – so if your gut says to see the DR please do. )

Emergen-C

Another remedy I like to use prior to travel is having a cup of Emergen-C at night each night after dinner, up to a week before departure date.  It has electrolytes and plenty of vitamins to help build you up to fight anything off.  You may want to consider some of this before arriving to an airport.  There also is a children’s version of this you might want to look into. You can find this at any supermarket, drug store, Harmon’s or Walmart or even on Amazon.com.

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Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Raw with the Mother

At the onset of a sore throat, I instantly drink 2 tablespoons mixed into 8 ounce glass of water, and 1 tablespoon of honey.  It is disgusting but I swear it takes the sore throat away and helps you get well faster.  Most people including my husband cannot stomach it.  (Please don’t try this or any of my tips unless you consult with your doctor first.

Immunity Defenders for Traveling
Immunity Defenders for Traveling

Airborne

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Airborne would be smart to use before your arrive to the airport for depatures in addition to the other methods mentioned above.  If you take with Emergen-C I would NOT take at the same time – but maybe 12 hours apart.

HONEY

Honey has so many anti-viral, feel-good properties.  It has been known to help with allergies and to help fight off viruses and just improve moods. Why not start taking it a week prior to vacation and throughout the duration?

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Staying Hydrated

Simply being fully hydrated can help you fend just about anything off 3x’s more than not being adequately hydrated.  Drink water, Smart Water is great to drink while on vacation because of having electrolytes and CALORIE FREE.  I have seen Smart Water around all of the Disney Parks, so its definitely available at your finger tips.  So start drinking in plenty of time before your trip and always!

HAND-WASHING 

Last but not least, how about good, old-fashioned hand-washing?! Wash your hands before every single time you go to eat.

Sometimes there’s just no stopping in catching some sort of cold or illness – but we can use all of the above methods to definitely try and surely lessen the severity of it, so we can still enjoy what we have worked so hard all year for!

Please don’t try any of the above tips unless you consult with your doctor first to make sure its OK for you, personally, to try.

When is your next Disney World Vacation?

Want to know more about Essential Oils – comment below.

Click here for my last article on Talking Mickey at Magic Kingdom

Check out my review of the Animal Kingdom Lodge by clicking HERE

Art of Animation – Resort Tour Video

Walt Disney World’s Art of Animation🌟

Click on the video below for a fun tour of Art of Animation from our 2016 Trip!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfBRKTIy9Vc&t=186s

 

Check out my full review of Walt Disney World’s Art of Animation Resort by clicking HERE! 

Talking Mickey at Magic Kingdom: Rumors Talking Mickey will be discontinued.

If you are heading to Walt Disney World within the next month or two make sure you get in a visit with Talking Mickey before his voice is discontinued!

With the rumors that Magic Kingdom will be retiring the “Talking Mickey” that you can meet and greet inside of Town Square Theater, we are so sad!  Being able to talk to Mickey and have him answer was such a fun experience! We are so saddened to hear this news but so happy to have had the experience!

If you click below, here is a video of our experience with meeting Talking Mickey Mouse from our August 2016 trip!

Turn the volume up!

https://instagram.com/p/BJTyv81jZ5t/

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Town Square Theater is located directly next door to Tony’s Town Square Restaurant – there is actually an entrance way attached. 

Talking Mickey will end soon: Picture 2013 Tony's Town Square Restaurant
Talking Mickey will end soon: Picture 2013 Tony’s Town Square Restaurant
Talking Mickey will end soon: Picture 2013 Tony's Town Square Restaurant
Talking Mickey will end soon: Picture 2013 Tony’s Town Square Restaurant

Just for the sole purpose of all these amazing character meet and greets you definitely want to have purchased Memory Maker for easy amazing photos.  Click HERE to read about Memory Maker!

If you are considering dining reservations but need some help – click HERE for an easy guide on How To Do Disney Dining! 

Need some tips on SAVING $$ Money $$ for your next Disney World vacation in addition to asking for DISNEY GIFT cards for all upcoming special occasions? – click HERE!

For some amazing pictures of the ANIMAL KINGDOM LODGE and my full review – click HERE!

When is your next Disney World Vacation?

 

Living with Childhood Anxiety and the Unspoken.

When our oldest was about 3, we discovered that our son was suffering with anxiety. When it first started happening, we really didn’t know what it was, or what was going on.

Our oldest was born a super bright baby with his eyes wide open.  He wasn’t much of a sleeper and was pretty colicky.  From about 3 months old he loved to look at books – he was always so aware of his surroundings.  When he was about 6 months and able to open books on his own, he loved looking through books and reading every single day.  He really was super smart and very observant.  For the most part, he grew into this very sweet, fun-loving, laughable happy child – he really has the best laugh.

We first noticed it the summer he was 3, we had gone away for an ocean vacation and when we returned I had placed him in swim lessons at the YMCA.  Even with having our own pool he was hesitant to learn to swim on his own, or go under the water.  My husband never learning to swim, which didn’t help at all and I feel that was the cause – but his Mother was terrified so the fear was passed on.  So, this week after this wonderful vacation where we all stayed comfortably together in one room was over, and we attended swim lessons.  This instructor proceeded to dunk him under the water as he jumped to her and she was pretty aggressive.  I cannot begin to tell you how my heart sank after that…. The very next day he cried the ENTIRE day – begging us to go back on vacation.  Our normally-happy little boy couldn’t even distract himself with playing.  He was so stuck on how scared he felt the previous day, he was in despair.  This never happened to me before and my Mother had never seen a child act this way, so we were all up in arms.  He kept crying to go back on vacation and he couldn’t understand why we couldn’t and how he loved us all staying in 1 bedroom.  When I say he cried the ENTIRE day I mean the ENTIRE DAY!  My poor sweet baby cried until he eventually fell asleep in his bed.  Luckily the next day, thankfully, he did better.

I should have noticed this during the Spring and all the lose poops was from being nervous… but I had no idea.

There was a time during that same summer where we rented a “clay-mation” DVD from the library, I think it may have been called Shawn the Sheep? Anyway, something in this DVD terrified him to the point where we shut it off and he became hysterical, unable to play or focus on something else. It usually was always something visual that would bring on panic attacks.

Then, in late August I realized he was almost 3 and a half, so it was time to potty train.  Mike wanted no part of it, but I thought he should start preschool for socializing and I wanted him potty-trained for it.  He mastered urinating in the toilet right away, but the pooping part took about a month and a half – to about 2 months, I want to say.  During this time, I started him in a preschool where he didn’t have a good experience and I had to pull him out because I wasn’t happy with the way the teacher treated him and the children there. I made the mistake of trying to switch him instantly into another school and on his first day there he pooped in his pants at school, leading to a weekend full of anxiety about returning to school.  So I pulled him out and figured I would just have him attend another preschool after he turned 4 years old.

During the years, he would be extremely nervous about traveling places or trying new things – sometimes suffering from the runs from his nervous stomach.  It never stopped him from making friends thank goodness, because friends seem to help so much.

In trying to make this long story short, through the years certain things would set him off – and normally it would be something visual – for instance trying to walk into any loud, dark room that he had never entered before.  One day my Mother and I tried to take the kids to the Circus which happened to be at our fair that year, and as we walked inside the tent to find a seat, it was extremely dark with flashing lights and the entire atmosphere cause him to have a panic attack.  He was crawling up my Mother, screaming and crying.  An elderly couple seating behind us tried to help – but once he is in panic mode, there is nothing that can get through.

Another one of many experiences, was the first time we brought the kids to Disney World, when he had just turned 5 and our youngest was still only 2 years old –  anything that had any type of 4-D special effects would set him into panic mode, and it would cause his brother to become scared.  To see that was so disheartening to my husband and I since we are both huge Disney lovers.  We couldn’t believe he could go sit on a roller coast but was terrified and screamed through Mickey’s Philharmagic!   Its been a few years and to this day, it is a fight to get him into any attraction that is 4-D and he isn’t thrilled over 3-D either – but at least we aren’t experiencing panic attacks over this sort of stuff anymore.

When our eldest entered 1st grade, is when it escalated to a point where we had never seen it go before.  (What we didn’t know then and what we know now: apparently there was a child in his class that had a severe behavior disorder, and a teacher who was known as a “screamer” who was retiring, and pretty much “done” with teaching.)

First, during Thanksgiving of his 1st grade year, he had a panic attack over a dog – which scared him to death of dogs for about 2 years. (I think this was some sort of warning / foreshadowing of what was going to come.) We spent the entire Thanksgiving weekend trying to console him because the anxiety stayed strong the entire time.  We didn’t even get to stay at the family member’s home for Thanksgiving dinner because he was too terrified to go inside the house.  That year on New Year’s Eve, we were invited to a friends house to celebrate who happened to have a dog.  Mike spent the entire evening on top of the back of a chair leaning against the wall, scared to death of the dog. There was no amount of talking that would get through to him.

Right before Christmas he would come home after school and tell me how his teacher would yell all day and the child with the behavior issues would get into trouble.  I should have switched his class right then and there – if I had known what was about to come.  One afternoon in February, he threw up on his desk at school, from spiking a fever which I think ended up being strep-throat.  (Every time he got sick his anxiety would spike, and it still stays true to this day.) After that is when it just got so bad… he couldn’t handle going to school anymore.  He would come home from school, be ok for about a half hour and then go into panic-mode – pacing the floors, crying that he doesn’t want to go to school.  He couldn’t barely eat dinner and stopped eating his favorite dessert.  The mornings became unbearable, where he would vomit several times, crying HYSTERICALLY, unable to reason with him, while he would pace the floors while I tried to make lunches and get his brother to eat.  When we would arrive at school, teachers there and the guidance counselor, sometimes the principal, would come out and have to pull him forcing him to go inside. It was heart wrenching leaving him there that way! When I would reach out to his teacher, she would constantly insist he was fine.  Day after day we would go through this same horrifying routine and let me say – it would linger into the weekends.  His 7th birthday that year, he wanted to go to the Lego Discovery Center and I remember him there telling me his “tummy hurt” the whole time we having fun, the ride there and ride home.  When he would tell me his tummy hurt, you could see on his face he was becoming nervous, and his palms would be sweaty.  Anytime he thought about school, it was miserable.

Since his pediatrician knew of his past and knew him well, I had them involved the entire time trying to help me out.  We tested him for EVERYTHING thinking that maybe it was Lyme, or the flu, or maybe his “tummy hurting” was a parasite that he picked up at the lake. But he was negative for everything.  We eventually started having him see his school guidance counselor and she was so nice in trying to help.  We also started paying out of pocket for a Child Therapist to see if we could figure out what was really wrong or what was really going on – since our insurance did not cover mental health.  We really weren’t sure if it was the teacher or if something happened to him inside of school.  I started having a Yoga teacher come to the house and started researching on everything that we could possibly do to help him…. as a parent it is so hard to watch your child suffer and be so unhappy.

Finally, over that summer, after school was out, he was able to start to recover. He started to bounce back to that happy, fun little boy that he was prior to this awful year.  From that point on, I would make sure that he would NEVER have a teacher that screamed at children again, and that every teacher would be aware of what he struggled with.  He started 2nd grade with a wonderful teacher and what a wonderful year he had!

Any trips we took that Spring and Summer would have him throwing up with anxiety on the way there, and he would be throwing up with panic usually the day before we were due to come home.

That Spring, we had pulled them out of school for 8 days to go down to Disney.  That was one of the best things we did that year. We all had such a good time and us being together – he was able to be free and happy!  But the day before we were due to return home, he was throwing up in the morning worried about having to travel home the next day. It took a few hours but then we were able to get out and enjoy our last day at Hollywood Studios.

Ever since this year, when we are due to take a long exciting day trip, or leaving for a vacation he will throw up en-route, and sometimes in the middle of vacation he will get nervous and usually throw up just thinking about returning home.  This past August, in the middle of our vacation, when it got close to returning home and it was only 2 weeks away from starting school he had an anxiety attack one morning on our way to Epcot.  Sometimes you just want to be “normal” and go have fun going about your day, and you have to pull back and just deal with whats going on, without being mad or upset and try to help him out as much as we can – that can be hard.  I remember our waiter at breakfast that morning at the Garden Grill felt so bad for us that he gave us Fast Passes to see Turtle Talk with Crush.

I am sharing this with you today, because if this is happening to your family, you aren’t alone. It isn’t embarrassing – it is a disorder and communicating can help so much! Communicate with your family members, doctors and school staff.  And it DOES get better! Yes, it gets better!  It has gotten better for us with age and a lot of time and love and devotion!

In my next article I’m going to talk about some of the things we learned along the way that have helped out tremendously with our son’s anxiety concerns and what really worked for us.

 

Animal Kingdom Lodge Pool and Slide

Check out our video of the Animal Kingdom Lodge Slide and Pool!

As we sit here freezing with this ultra cold blast traveling up the East Coast, lets enjoy some pics and videos from summer!

 

Animal Kingdom Lodge
Animal Kingdom Lodge – Pool Slide

Please bare with me as we learn to create and edit Videos!

Looking for a review of the Animal Kingdom Lodge? Click here!

Need some tricks for saving for a Walt Disney World Vacation? Click Here!

When is your next Walt Disney World Vacation?

LISTEN TO WDW TODAY ON THE APP OR YOUTUBE!

You can watch and listen to the Walt Disney Resort WDW Resort TV Channel on YouTube?!

Oh my word! How exciting!

For those of us that live far and aren’t able to travel to Disney as often as we would love, we can listen to recorded versions of the Walt Disney World Resort Channel ( WDW Resort TV) that is played in your hotel room during your stay.IMG_6665

When you are staying at a Walt Disney World Resort and you wake up and put the TV on, it automatically goes to this channel.  This channel is super helpful in not just playing awesome Disney music but it gives you times for all the parks and Disney Springs for that day!

How super nifty is this?

I didn’t realize that you could also find Walt Disney World or Disneyland music “loops” on YouTube as well. All kinds to search through!

 

Also if you feel like watching “Disney World Must Do’s with Stacey”, its on YouTube too!

I hope I’m not the last to know – and if I am – I apologize! 🙂  But as for  now, I’m so super excited to find these and be able to listen to the magic whenever I want and feel a little closer to the magic!

Sometimes it’s the little things in life.

When is your next Disney World Vacation?

Want to know more about Animal Kingdom Lodge!? Click here!

Click here to read my review on Hollywood Studio’s Star Wars Galactic Desert Party!

Click here to read about Disney World’s Memory Maker!

Click here to read one of my Disney World Tips!

Click here to read about HOW TO DO Disney World Dining!

<a href=”http://now <a href=http://Amazon FreeTime Unlimited Free Trial” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Check out Amazon’s Free Time Unlimited Access to 13,000 child-friendly books, movies, TV shows, educational apps and games by clicking here! 

We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!

A MUST for those Star Wars Fans!

We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!

Back during our Walt Disney World Resort stay in August of 2016, our children decided to try the Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple in Hollywood Studios.  I must say how amazing it was and my youngest who is now 7, keeps asking when he will get to do it again!  Who doesn’t want to fight against the amazing Sith Lord Darth Vader?

To be a part of the action:

  1. On the day you are attending Hollywood Studios, get to the park before opening, so once it does open you can head towards the sign ups for Jedi Training which is behind the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular.  At this area where you sign up, and as long as it isn’t sold out, THEY will give you a time to show up for it.  So you go about your morning, keeping in mind the time you need to return. I believe only children ages 4-12 can register.
  2. When you show up at your designated time, they will have all the children sit in a shaded area going over the rules and whats about to come.  They will be handed their Jedi training robes and a complimentary bottle of water.
  3. When it’s time the children will be escorted in a parade
  4. carrying a sign in the front, over to the staging area next to the Star Tours attraction.
  5. Then the children are escorted up on stage where they begin their Jedi training and eventually get to battle Darth Vader and there is a special surprise appearance from Kylo Ren.IMG_6812I was handed a nifty card for all the Photopass pictures – but I cannot remember if it was included in Memory Maker or if I had to go to where the card directed – so definitely check your card so you don’t miss any pictures! STUDIO_JTA1_20160820_389250288160 - CopySTUDIO_JTA1_20160820_389250288235

The kids do look hot and sweaty because this was taken in mid-August of 2016.  I remember sweat dripping down my forehead and off my face as I watched the show. LOL 🙂

But we were having such a great time – it didn’t bother us.  We always have dining reservations inside air conditioning for breaks as well. 

This is a great time for some ice water, cooling towels and some neck fans!

As with everything inside Disney World – Simply Amazing – is how to describe the feeling you have as you watch your child battle Darth Vader. Every child gets a turn, so no worries.

We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!
We loved Jedi Training at Hollywood Studios!

There are so many exciting and amazing things to do inside of Hollywood Studios especially Star Wars related!

We are really looking forward to the opening of Galaxy’s Edge!

What are you most excited about for your next Walt Disney World Vacation??

Review of the Star Wars Galactic Desert Party – Read all about it here!

Do you need some product reviews for your next trip? Click Here!

Check out my recent Travel Tip Here!