Raising a Disney Baby - Reviewing our way around the resorts (and hopefully the parks too!) - Update 10/24 - Of mice and men

SnowWhiteOz

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2015
Note: The picture of DD from our introduction is the only time I will be showing her face. We have a no social media policy for her as we want her to determine her own internet presence when she can understand the consequences so while I will be sharing photos of her here she will have a sticker covering her face for her privacy.

Our trip (if you can call it that) begins with the 90 minute drive from Grandma’s house in Daytona Beach to Orlando.

It’s an uneventful route but a 10 month old in the car for that long is always a mixed bag. Thankfully after a short screaming fit she fell asleep and we made our way to Disney.

This was my first time ever driving my own vehicle onto Disney property (well DH was driving but still) and it was the weirdest feeling ever. The welcome sign was as magical as ever although DH thinks Disney should invest in making it double sided so all those babes in rear facing car seats can experience it to.

We turned off to our resort for the evening - The Grand Floridian. I wanted to stay somewhere new and we had a small travel splurge budget from our house sale so I knew DD’s first stay had to be there.

But it wasn’t at the Grand itself. You know your girl loves a deal and loves renting DVC points so I secured a last minute dedicated DVC reservation and got a 1 bedroom villa at the Villas at the Grand Floridian. Same grandiosity as the main building just a little smaller and off to the side next to the wedding pavilion.

As has become commonplace since we began this adventure direct to room check in never seems to work for us so I had to run in and sort out some issues before we could get our room keys and thankfully we could get into our room early around 12:30.


615289

Once that was sorted we headed past the amazing chocolate statues and penguin fountain and made our way up to our room on the fifth floor.
615292

We had standard view but in this instance that meant a view of the monorail which to me is still a fun view!


615285

We headed over to the main building to grab some lunch at Gasparilla Grill. I had the chicken and Brie sandwich - nothing to write home about, and we split the 50th celebration cupcake which was lemon and blueberry flavored and quite good. We also picked up our souvenir refillable mugs because we are both big Diet Coke drinkers!

615286

We made our way back to the room because it was time for DDs nap. After she woke up a little more refreshed we headed down to the pool - DD is definitely a water baby but is still getting used to crowded pools. She hated the buckets that tipped water in the splash area but was fascinated with the other kids - one thing pandemic babies have missed is the chance to socialize so she’s slowing gaining confidence around others.

615287


615290

After her last nap of the day we got dressed and headed back over to the main lobby - we did a little souvenir shopping and then headed up to the Enchanted Rose balcony for some light dinner. We had flatbread, sliders and truffle fries - all were good but I think the fries were my favorites.

615514

615291

We had been discussing whether to go to the parks that afternoon but I had gotten some not so great news about I job that I had being going through the interview process for (6 weeks, writing samples and four stages of interviews and I still didn’t get it) so I didn’t want DDs first time in a Disney Park to be when I was not in the best mood.

We made our way back to villas (via a quick stop at Gasparillas for drink refills and dessert) and got DD into the bath to begin her wind down routine and then got her settled into bed. DH and I watched a little TV, ate our hocus pocus cupcakes and enjoyed watching the monorail go by before retiring ourselves. It had been a long day and everyone was tired - plus we needed energy if we were going to try and take DD into her first park the next day!

615294

Next up - cats and mice and everything not so nice.
 
Last edited:

CruellaNY

It’s Good to Be Bad
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
The Grand Floridian. I wanted to stay somewhere new and we had a small travel splurge budget from our house sale so I new DD’s first stay had to be there.
This is my 2nd favorite resort and I think the perfect "1st" resort for baby! Doesn't matter to me if it's the GF or VGF - it's still the GF :)
I had a celebration cupcake at WL earlier this month and it was delicious! Dark chocolate ganache with dark chocolate frosting and a birthday cake center and filling; Mm-MM! I like how the different resorts have different ones.
 

Woth2982

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
What a wonderful "Standard" view! The little splash area over there is so cute! I totally agree about the lack of socialization for the pandemic babies. S LOVES being near other kids her age, she was so isolated her first year of life. Several of our friends have kids about her age and they just dont get to hang out the way we all dreamed about. But thankfully that is starting to change!

Sounds like a great first day, and it probably helped her get used to her surroundings verses the overstimulation of the park. Cannot wait to see how she liked her first park!
 

SnowWhiteOz

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2015
This is my 2nd favorite resort and I think the perfect "1st" resort for baby! Doesn't matter to me if it's the GF or VGF - it's still the GF :)
I had a celebration cupcake at WL earlier this month and it was delicious! Dark chocolate ganache with dark chocolate frosting and a birthday cake center and filling; Mm-MM! I like how the different resorts have different ones.
Ooh the WL one sounds delicious! This will spoil where our last stay was but they had a dole whip pineapple one at the Poly and it was incredible!
 
  • SnowWhiteOz

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2015
    What a wonderful "Standard" view! The little splash area over there is so cute! I totally agree about the lack of socialization for the pandemic babies. S LOVES being near other kids her age, she was so isolated her first year of life. Several of our friends have kids about her age and they just dont get to hang out the way we all dreamed about. But thankfully that is starting to change!

    Sounds like a great first day, and it probably helped her get used to her surroundings verses the overstimulation of the park. Cannot wait to see how she liked her first park!
    I’m hoping moving down here will expose DD to more kids her age - back in Denver DH and I had been working from home since the start of her pandemic so she never got to go to day care or anything to meet babies her own age.

    She’s definitely fascinated by them but right now we’re trying to teach her she doesn’t have to touch everyone she sees! :cutie:
     

    StarWarsMomofGirls!

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 16, 2015
    DD is definitely a water baby but is still getting used to crowded pools. She hated the buckets that tipped water in the splash area but was fascinated with the other kids - one thing pandemic babies have missed is the chance to socialize so she’s slowing gaining confidence around others.
    My sister has a pandemic baby and it took a long time for her little girl to really get used to us! We saw her but not as much as we would have and it was hard. But they will all get there!

    Sounded like a nice relaxing time.
     

    SnowWhiteOz

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2015
    My sister has a pandemic baby and it took a long time for her little girl to really get used to us! We saw her but not as much as we would have and it was hard. But they will all get there!

    Sounded like a nice relaxing time.
    I’m hoping DD gets better with experience - so far she’s only managed to see her grandparents on one side in person so each new experience is getting her a little more used to it.
     
  • SnowWhiteOz

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2015
    Of mice and men

    Or men dressed up as mice. One benefit of not sleeping well in over two years (thanks pregnancy and baby sleep) is that I am up awake at random hours so during one early morning wake period I was randomly searching restaurant availability for that day and happened to find what must have been a last minute cancellation for Chef Mickeys. I thought this would be a fabulous way to see how DD would react to characters and I’d never been either so I snatched it up.

    But of course DD didn’t want to make it too easy for me. She woke up an hour early which meant breakfast would be awful close to nap time and prime meltdown territory. I didn’t want a cranky DH too so I got DD dressed and we went for a sunrise walk over to the poly to fill in some time.


    615895

    When we got there DD saw a Minnie statue in a window display and squealed so I hoped that was a positive sign.


    615896

    After filling in an hour with our adventure we headed back to get ready. When we were set we headed walked over to the main building and DD got to go on her first ever monorail. Fittingly it was the Peach one as that is the name of one of our cats.

    We made it to the contemporary and checked in for our reservation. This is one thing I don’t like about Disney and even less so now with a baby - if I have a reservation I should be seated very close to that time. Having to entertain a tired baby for another 20 mins is no fun!

    But eventually we made it in - dining has changed from buffet to family style all you care to eat. Everything was decent but the cheesy hash browns were incredible. Paying $50 for breakfast is definitely hard to swallow but for a one off way to introduce DD to characters I’d say it was just worth it.

    Social distancing meant characters stayed about 6 feet away from the table for pictures and there were no autographs or hugs. This was probably for the best because DD was terrified! She did not enjoy the characters and goofy was the most scary apparently.


    615897

    615898

    615900

    615899

    By the end we managed not to cry for Minnie Mouse who is our favorite but even then we had to cling on super tight to mommy and daddy.

    We did manage to get some good photos by distracting her but overall it was a lesson that she is not quite there yet when it comes to scary larger than life characters. But Mickey did give us a laugh as we were leaving by sneaking up on her!

    615901

    After we left we walked back to the grand and even at that time of day the heat was oppressive.

    DD actually fell asleep in the stroller for the first time ever and when we made it back we left her in there to to finish her snooze before we would head off into the parks and home.


    615903

    She napped right up until check out time so we quickly packed and chucked our bags in the car before heading back to the monorail to head over to the Magic Kingdom.

    Coming up - A whole new world
     

    StarWarsMomofGirls!

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 16, 2015
    It was good to learn how she liked or rather didn't like the characters. I am sure to her they are HUGE! I am sure over time she will learn to love them.

    Chef Mickey's was a one and done for us. We did it on our first trip and it was fine but there are so many other options out there.
     

    SnowWhiteOz

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2015
    It was good to learn how she liked or rather didn't like the characters. I am sure to her they are HUGE! I am sure over time she will learn to love them.

    Chef Mickey's was a one and done for us. We did it on our first trip and it was fine but there are so many other options out there.
    I definitely wouldn’t be racing back to Chef Mickeys either. Honestly most sit down places at Disney are just far too expensive now with really limited menus so unless that changes will be doing quick service more often that not when we visit!
     

    CruellaNY

    It’s Good to Be Bad
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2020
    I had one that loved characters right from the beginning and then one who was terrified until he was about 4! We haven't been to Chef Mickey's in probably 10 years but I did hear the breakfast has improved post-COVID
     


    Connect

    TODAY'S HEADLINES


















    Top