Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Disney Day 1--Travel Day and runDisney Expo

In preparation for driving down to Orlando with my mom and sister, I left Virginia on Wednesday and drove to North Carolina.  We had an early night so that we could wake up SUPER early and hit the road {and hopefully miss most of the traffic}.  Little did we know that we would all be so excited about going to Disney that we would end up leaving over an hour earlier than we thought!

The drive down was pretty uneventful--due to leaving so early, we missed all of the traffic that we had anticipated and as far as I'm concerned any road trip that is uneventful is fine by me!'

As soon as we got near Orlando, the traffic picked up which is always the case!  Our excitement was palpable in the car--we could not wait to be in Disney World!

Mattie was so excited when we started seeing the signs around Disney--she was just looking out the window and waving at everyone.  Disney should have paid her to be the welcoming committee!

We finally arrived!!!

We stayed on property {at the Caribbean Beach Resort} and with their new-ish Magic Band system, they e-mail you when your room is ready and you can go straight to your room.  We had let them know beforehand that we would like to check in early, if possible.  Luckily, mom received an email when we were about an hour away that our room was ready!  We drove straight to the room and unloaded the car.  We freshened up and headed over to the runDisney expo.

I am not sure what I expected the expo to be, but it far exceeded what I thought.  There were SO MANY booths and people.  I'm glad we went on the first day to do packet pickup and look around the expo, because we went back the next day and it was SLAMMED.

We first walked around the expo before picking up our packets.  We bought some new running belts to test out {I really liked mine!} and Mattie waited for her number to be called for the New Balance booth.  Every year, New Balance and Disney team up and release a few different Disney designs specifically for runDisney.  Thank goodness Mattie did her research and signed up on the waitlist for the queue the night before we left--it quickly filled up and was closed for the first day of the expo.  With her entrance, mom and I were able to tag along and pick out a pair, too.  We did go back on the last day of the expo and they were no longer running on the queue system and Mattie and I were able to grab another pair of shoes. Just so you know!

After checking out the booths, we saw a line to meet Jeff Galloway.  My sister is a huge fan of his and mom has read several of his books on running.  That was a pretty neat experience for us!

We left the expo area and headed to pick up our packets at another building.  That was so quick and easy!  Disney definitely knows what they are doing--everything was ready to go!

We walked back over to the expo to exchange our race shirts for different sizes and to make sure that we didn't miss anything.

We drove back over to our hotel and tried to decide what we wanted to do for dinner that night.  For the rest of the week, we had reservations at the different parks for dinner, but the first night we really had no plans.  We unanimously decided to drive into Orlando and try out Shake Shack.  When Tom and I were in Washington, D.C. this past summer, I grabbed a milkshake from Shake Shack but had never eaten at one {and we don't have one any nearer to us than D.C.}.  Oh my goodness--it was so incredibly tasty!!  We all got the regular cheeseburger and split an order of fries.  After dinner, we all got a different milkshake/cement for desert and oh man were they good!  I can't wait until Tom and I are back in D.C. this summer to get another one!

We drove by the outlets and walked around for a little bit, but we were all too exhausted to really want to do much shopping.

When we got back to the resort, we went by guest services to try to figure out the best way to get to our breakfast reservations at Chef Mickey's for the next morning.  We then went by Port Royale to grab our refillable mugs and see what all was over there.  We then headed back to the room to shower and head to bed to get ready for our early morning to go to Chef Mickeys and Magic Kingdom!

I have joked with Tom about this before--I only wake up early to go to Disney!  Not even kidding, this was one of the most exhausting trips that I have ever been on, but we kept on going because it was DISNEY!!

Coming up tomorrow: Day 2: Magic Kingdom!

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