Adventures with Uncle Deej - Christmas with Bug

The ability to spoil our niece and nephew when the opportunity presents itself is one of the most rewarding things in life for an aunt and uncle whose own children both have four paws. If Old Sport asked to go to the golf course during a freak Florida snowstorm, I'd probably go buy some winter clothes and take him. Likewise, if our niece, Bug, asked to go to Disney over the most mind-bogglingly busy time of year, we'd probably have her flight booked within the hour.

In this case, it was more like 12 minutes.

Because really, what self-respecting aunt and uncle is going to have the willpower required to say no to this Christmas list?...


The challenge with this particular adventure was one of timing... It all came together with just two weeks notice. That may not seem like much of an issue, but this is Disney... At Christmas... I didn't hold out much hope for a Fast Pass, let alone hotel and restaurant reservations. 

And yet, as he always does... The Mickster came through.

I managed to snag what may have been the last remaining room at Saratoga Springs for what I call "Chrstmas-Eve Eve." Not ideal, but who was I to complain.. It was a room, and if nothing else we'd have easy access to Disney Springs if Bug wanted to do some shopping. More on the shopping later...

But since I'd rather stay just about anywhere else than Saratoga, I kept checking.. and checking.. and checking. And then, there it was... Like a golden ticket in the Willy Wonka bar. The day before we were supposed to check-in, availability at Wilderness Lodge. 

While many will default and say the Grand Floridian is the most beautiful of the Disney resorts at Christmas time, Wilderness Lodge is, at worst, a very close second. It also made the logistics of the next two days exponentially easier...

That's because the mega-resort upgrade was really just score #4 on the string of good luck Mickey tossed our way. The next was a last-minute dinner reservation at Chef Mickey's... And instead of battling the Disney traffic, all we had to do was hop on a boat.

After giving our regards to the Chef, we walked over to Bay Lake Tower and paid a visit to the Top of the World Lounge. Yes, Aunt MJ and Uncle Deej needed an adult beverage after all of the Chef Mickey's hysteria, but it was the view of Wishes that we were really after...

The next morning - Christmas Eve - we made an early start of it. Not that we had much choice.. All 3 of us were awake at an ungodly hour recreating the famous "I'm too excited to sleep" commercial. 

This was my first time visiting the Magic Kingdom on Christmas Eve, and I'll fully admit that I was dreading the anticipated crowds. Being there early, however, gave us roughly an hour with a relatively empty park before the masses descended in full. We used the time to have a rather confusing discussion with Alice and the Mad Hatter. 

Next up... Breakfast with the gang from the Hundred-Acre Wood. Another last-minute score on this 36-hour Disney adventure. 

On our way to Frontierland, where we got soaked on Splash Mountain, we stopped and said hello to Chip & Dale. Naturally, they were quite enamored with Bug's old-school Polaroid camera, and couldn't resist the opportunity to connect with their inner Andre 3000.
"Shake it like a Polaroid picture."

As if scoring last-minute reservations at Wilderness Lodge, Chef Mickey's and Crystal Palace wasn't enough, we tossed in one more for good measure... Lunch at Be Our Guest. We all split a Grey Stuff cupcake, and yes, it is delicious..

After lunch, the crowds had officially reached the you-have-to-be-out-of-your-mind-to-get-in-that-line status. Thankfully, we had one last Fast Pass to burn...

Earlier in the day, Bug said she wanted to ride Haunted Mansion, so we navigated our way that direction only to discover a 90 minute wait. And yet, she was undeterred. I could feel my soul sinking with every step we took toward the back of the line - which was no where near the 90 minute sign - and decided it was time to make a deal...

"Bug, I know you really want to ride Haunted Mansion, but I will add $50 to your souvenir budget to spend on anything you want if you don't make me get in this line."

Worked like a charm. Let's go shopping....

Finally, the sun was setting on both Disney and this adventure, but there was still one thing I promised Bug we would do...
Ride a boat over a road.

Back home, as I swiped through the photos from the day, I felt like a 12 year old kid - anxious to plan Bug's next trip so we could do it all over again. And while this adventure may have come to an end, the memories still kept on coming...

Enjoy Your Stay