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Happy Birthday! (with photos)

Monday, November 12, 2012

After a less than dazzling senior year in high school, a slow start in college, and a good bit of mother-daughter tension between us over the years, my daughter has finally hit her stride, excelling at everything, working her brains out, and reaching the point where she thinks I might have gotten a little smarter. When she asked me if I could come up to Massachusetts for her 27th birthday, Bill instead suggested that I fly her down to Orlando and that we girls do Disney as a special treat for her birthday. Did I marry a great guy, or what?! And Delia really appreciated it.

We stayed directly across the street from Downtown Disney Marketplace, the free-access Disney shopping and dining area. So, our first stop was dinner at the Fulton Crab House. Doesn't she look grown up?

Afterward, we were very wicked indeed at Goofy's Candy Company. Did you know how much those tiny baggies full of bulk candy cost? Would you believe $22 for candy that we hardly made a dent in? (Just as well, just as well.)

Then we returned to our hotel room, where we shared a free bottle of wine that came with the room, and Delia chose a perfectly awful pay movie that she wouldn't have seen otherwise (and I wouldn't have seen EVER): Sacha Baron Cohen in "The Dictator." Somehow I managed to fall asleep with it on, and not have nightmares. Perhaps the wine helped.

We spent the entire next day at her park of choice, Magic Kingdom. You're never too old to visit Mickey, or to be Minnie. One of the first things we did was to purchase ears to wear. Because hers said "It's My Birthday!" hordes of strangers ended up wishing her a happy birthday, which made her feel really special. An ulterior motive, of course, was the hope of obtaining free stuff as well. This didn't happen immediately.

Besides lunch and about 2 hours of waiting in line, we did 7 things in our 8 hours at the park, which I thought was a remarkable accomplishment. Even the waiting in line was fun, because we could reconnoiter our next stops and generally goof around (a very appropriate Disney activity).

We did the Hall of Presidents, in which I thought they'd hired guys to play the parts, but Delia reminded me that, even though they actually STOOD UP, they were animatronics! (I thought they could've at least done a better Obama robot, but never mind.)

Also, a flight over London and Neverland with Peter Pan, Stitch's Great Escape, photo opp with Mickey, Haunted Mansion (a great ride, in which we saw our heads disappear in puffs of smoke):

It's a Small World was surprisingly retro fun that takes you right back to 1970. But Delia says that, sadly, they've had to rebuild the boats for this ride because people are getting so much more oversized than when Disney World first opened. It's not such a small world after all.

And of course the spinning teacups of the Mad Tea Party. I kept wondering why our teacup was so much tamer than everyone else's, until I discovered, two seconds before the end of the ride, that you could spin it yourself using a wheel in the middle of the teacup! (At this point you've probably come to the conclusion that my daughter is much smarter about things than I am, and you'd be right.)

That night, tired but happy, we returned to a free dinner at the hotel. The waiter spotted Delia's "Happy Birthday" Disney button, and she scored her free stuff: a massive piece of wonderful cheesecake with a candle on top! (I had some, too.)

It was worth every penny. But taking your kid to Disney World for her 27th birthday and seeing that magic light come on in her eyes? Priceless!

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  • SILLYHP1953
    It's a small world ride was my favorite last year, because as I'm older now, and hopefully wiser, I fully understood the meaning of all the world's people dressing in white at the end of the ride, instead of their individual country colors.

    That had to be really cool taking your 27 year old to Disney World. My 27 year old son lives in Tampa now and my dh talks about retiring to Florida....
    1756 days ago
    Never to old for Disney World, and I'm glad it was a great bonding time for you and your daughter. Bless Bill for his generous spirit and his wisdom.

    You have great memories now to overshadow some of the bad.
    It truly is sad that the boats/rides had to be made bigger because so many people are heavier.

    Nice pics Sue.

    emoticon emoticon
    1889 days ago
    How wonderfully sweet!!
    1890 days ago
    The Haunted Mansion is one of my favorite childhood memories. My mom and I were in one car and my dad and little brother were in the one behind us. We laughed so hard! It was such fun.

    I'm so glad you got to spend her birthday together. I love being with my mom!

    Thanks for sharing the pictures. I loved them.

    1891 days ago
    Sounds like a wonderful time. You will have so many
    wonderful memories of the quality fun time together.
    You sure have a nice husband. Love the cheesecake!
    Wish her a Happy Birthday from me emoticon too.
    1891 days ago
    What a wonderful thing that she chose to spend this birthday with you!!!! You look fabulous!! She barely looks 17, let alone 27!! She is adorable!! So glad things are better and so happy that she's doing so well!!! Bill is a great husband (mine is too!) Aren't we lucky?
    1891 days ago
    This may be my favorite blog that you have ever written.

    I'm really pleased that your daughter chose to spend her birthday with you. And so pleased that Bill came up with the Disney theme. He really is wonderful. Your daughter is beautiful just like you.

    I want to go to the Fulton Crab House and to Goofy's Candy company too. LOL.

    I love the Magic Kingdom!! The ears are definitely you! LOL. I love The Hall of Presidents and was really impressed with it. Another favorite of mine is It's A Small World.

    It looks like you both made a lot of wonderful memories. I hope that someday you can do this with your son!
    1892 days ago
    What a wonderful day! Love the pictures, thanks for sharing! Can't believe the size of that cheesecake. It's one of my weaknesses! You guys look like you're having so much fun! Proving, you're never too old for Disney! WooHoo!!
    1892 days ago
    It sounds (and looks) like a fantastic day! Tell Delia happy birthday from me too...even though I don't have any free stuff for her. emoticon
    1892 days ago
  • JANEDOE12345
    This made me feel bittersweet and miss my own daughter so much. Glad someone out there has a loving relationship with grown daughter. Delia is growing into a lovely young woman and it's great that you two have had a healing.

    1892 days ago
  • GABY1948
    What a wonderful treat for both of you! I'm so glad that you had that time together and you dh is truly a wonderful man (I have one just like him!) Great pictures and thanks for sharing the whole trip with us!
    1892 days ago
    What a wonderful time together! Building great memories too. Thank you for sharing this.

    Unbelievable about The Small World ride. Just another example of our new world.
    1892 days ago
    So glad you had a wonderful time with your daughter. A person is never too old for Disneyland or Disney World.
    1892 days ago
  • GEORGE815
    I have sons ages 26 and 28. One lives at home and goes to school. The other moved out some 10 years ago. In our setup, I couldn't see going to Disneyworld at the moment. But I am impressed your daughter is coming around. My college bound son is working on it, but doesn't have it yet. Congratulations on a great trip. We took our sons to both Disneyland and Disneyworld. Adults can become kids again. Evidently, so can 27 year olds. Thanks for sharing.
    1892 days ago
    What a nice vacation!
    1892 days ago
    Thinking back a year or so, I find this wonderful time you spent together to be even more special....time has a way of healing some things and of course when young people grow up they often (thankfully) see their parents in a different light. The comment about the boats needing to be enlarged is so sad...not all things change for the better!
    1892 days ago
  • DMF2012
    Sounds like you two had a great time. What a wonderful birthday gift to give your daughter at any age. I love the pics of the two of you, and I'm glad you have such a great relationship. Safe travels home to both of you.
    1892 days ago
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