When we finally got to the hotel we were greeted with a room filled with balloons, cookies, gifts, and Disney facts. It was really fun and the kids were so excited. No one fell asleep until about midnight, and we all woke up at 4:30 am the next morning. The hotel let us keep our car there for a couple of weeks (for free!), so we took the earliest shuttle over to the airport. We were greeted by our Make-A-Wish coordinators, Jamie and Allison. I can't believe they got up that early. They had tiaras for the girls, and breakfast for all of us. They escorted us through security, carrying bags and sometimes children. Jamie even followed us all the way onto the plane to bring me coffee and the girls orange juice. Wow!
Amazingly, we all survived the flights and arrived in Orlando where we were greeted by someone from Give Kids the World (GKTW). He helped up get our bags and then walked us over to the rental car place to get our car. The girls grabbed some brochures and immediately started planning our trip.
We had our pick of minivans (rental provided by GKTW) and then made the drive to Give Kids the World Village. All the kids fell asleep on the way there and Laurel just about lost her mind when we had to wake her up to check in. Madeleine was given a stuffed Mickey Mouse, and Laurel and Claire both got Shamus. We were given a quick tour of our villa -- Wow! I had looked up information about where we were going to be staying, but I wasn't expecting anything so big, or so nice. We have a two bedroom, two bath villa with a full kitchen and large living room. It comes with just about everything we need to live here comfortably for the week.
We spent the afternoon exploring the village. We were all so tired that it's hard to remember exactly what we saw and did that afternoon. We definitely found the ice cream shop! Ice cream is served (everything in the village is free) from 7:30 am to 9:30 pm, and getting ice cream for breakfast at least once is mandatory.
This tree (Elmer), snores. It's pretty hilarious - especially if you are five!
Mayor Clayton is the mascot for Give Kids the World. We saw a lot of him during our stay.
Visiting the salon. Kids can get tattoos, painted nails or face painting.