6. A HUGE Surprise

Monday 3rd December – Bad Day

I’d felt a bit sad over the weekend as it was the first one of December and I would usually be doing something cosy and festive with Matt. I know it’s a first world problem but I was also sad I didn’t have an advent calendar, especially as a lot of my friends had been sent ones from home. I spent the morning by the pool reading (it certainly didn’t feel like December today!) and spoke to mum who said she had sent me an advent calendar… little did I know!!! Carry on reading if this doesn’t make sense…

I went off to work and had a rubbish shift where lots of things went wrong, including cutting my leg on a chair and whipping myself in the eye with my bag. It was ridiculously busy as Neil Patrick Harris was narrating the Candlelight Processional show in Epcot and I just wasn’t in a very good mood. Weirdly, everyone kept telling me my shift would get better… this will make sense in the next part…

Tuesday 4th December – SURPRISE!!!

I had planned to go to the Outlets with Liv this morning. As I was brushing my teeth, Elin came in to tell me there was someone at the door for me. I was expecting my new Kindle to be delivered so I didn’t think anything of it…

I wish I had put my toothbrush down… because MY MUM AND BROTHER WERE STANDING AT MY FRONT DOOR. I had absolutely no idea… as you can see from the videos:

After I had calmed down, I learned that they were supposed to come to work to surprise me the night before (now everyone telling me my shift was going to get better makes sense!) but their flight was delayed due to the storm. My mum had been planning with Elin and had even been in contact with my manager who was going to let them into the park so they could surprise me there. She’d even arranged for me to have the day off. I can’t believe so many people were in on the surprise and went to so much effort to make it happen! I’m so so grateful to everyone. As you can probably tell, I’ve never been so surprised in my life!!!

After I tried to process everything and finished cleaning my teeth, we were off to Magic Kingdom! The whole morning was a blur and I kept metaphorically pinching myself to check whether this was really happening. We had the best day, did most of the rides then went to the Christmas party in the evening. Like me, Mum had always wanted to see Disney World at Christmas so it was amazing to see them experience that for the first time.

Wednesday 5th December – Work work work

Mum and Thomas picked me up the next morning to go to Epcot. I was going to spend a couple of hours with them in the park then I had work. It was great having access to a car after 2 months of relying on buses.

It was very strange knowing they were in Epcot while I was at work… I even served Thomas a pint at the beer cart! They had lunch in the Rose and Crown then came back a bit later in the evening to watch the fireworks. It was a freezing day so it was pretty quiet in the evening; I got to chat to them as they sat at an empty table and everyone was so kind and accommodating! I was assigned to do Magic Moment, where I choose a child to start the fireworks, but as it was quiet there were no children around… so I did it with Thomas instead! It was so funny and I loved that I got to make his 21st birthday a bit more special, complete with a Mickey sticker sash and a crown!

That evening was the Disney Programs Winter Formal. Mum and Thomas went back to their hotel and I got ready after work and went with some friends. We were only there for a couple of hours as we didn’t finish work until late but we got free food which is always a win! Most of our arrival group was there so it was lovely to spend time all together.

Thursday 6th December – Hollywood Studios

Another great day- the weather was beautiful and I managed to book some Fastpasses which meant we did pretty much everything, rides and shows-wise! They loved seeing the new Toy Story Land and Thomas had a birthday dance with Buzz! We also Facetimed my other brother to let him know he was really missed. It was strange him not being there with us but we will make up for it in April when he comes to visit with my dad.


We finished off the day with Fantasmic! of course, as they both love it, too. On our way out we watched the end of the Christmas fireworks, Jingle Bell Jingle Bam. I had the next two days off so I stayed at the hotel with Mum and Thomas. I felt like I was on holiday!

Friday 7th December – Universal Studios

We were up early to get a full day in the park. We entertained ourselves in the queues with finger snap (great game) but it was fairly quiet. Again, we did pretty much everything we wanted to do, including getting soaked on the three water rides, the new Harry Potter ride and watched the Macy’s Christmas parade. We nearly wet ourselves laughing on Rip Ride Rock-It… my face got stuck from the G-Force and it was all captured on video!


We had dinner at Perkins on the way back and I got the Peanut Butter Silk Pie for dessert. I remember having this several years ago and it was as good as I remember. Much to Thomas’ delight, we then spent a couple of hours late-night shopping at the outlets! The discounts in some of the shops are insane… I may have treated myself in Kate Spade…

Saturday 8th December – Animal Kingdom

We got to Animal Kingdom before it was due to open to try to get on the very popular Avatar ride. Unfortunately, I forgot that there were Extra Magic Hours on so it had already been open a couple of hours and was so busy! Much like last time, the queue for the ride was already two and a half hours at 8:30am.

We did the other rides (Thomas actually screamed on Dinosaur), watched Nemo the Musical and Festival of the Lion King, met Mickey and Minnie Mouse and by a stroke of luck (and patience), I managed to get us Fastpasses for Avatar: Flight of Passage! It was AMAZING and I can now see why it’s so popular.

We left quite early and went to Disney Springs. It was absolutely rammed and I’m not sure what else I expected on a Saturday night. Needless to say, we weren’t there for very long and, delirious from hunger and tiredness, had a quick McDonald’s on the way back as we couldn’t decide where to eat!

Sunday 9th December – Hometime

After a last breakfast at the hotel, we were all packed up and went back to the outlets. Mum hadn’t quite had enough from the other night… plus it was raining hard so it was a welcome rainy day activity. Thomas disagrees. I got quite a bit of my Christmas shopping done though.

Mum and Thomas dropped me off at work on their way to the airport. I felt really sad as I walked in but luckily found Roma in the changing room so I didn’t dwell on things too much. I still can’t believe they went to all that trouble to surprise me with a visit but of course it went far too quickly. It was also great to experience all the parks as a guest  again rather than a Cast Member from backstage. I’m very lucky to have had an extra week with my family!

L x

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