A view into the life of a family who encountered a different future than expected, but has become all the richer for it.

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Monday, February 11, 2013

Day 3 - The Most Magical Day Of All!

Today was the most magical day of all ... for many reasons!  First of all, it was the day that we visited Disney's Magic Kingdom!  What isn't magical about that?

Secondly, my brother, Alan Fath, and his daughter, Gracie, were able to spend the entire day with us! And, lastly ... I was able to see some sweet friends that formerly attended University of Mobile who now work at Magic Kingdom.  It was a fun day!
It all started out with us arriving early to see the opening show at Magic Kingdom.  As soon as the gates opened up, we headed over to Town Hall to get a picture with Mickey and Minnie.  That was really fun!  After that, we left and went straight to the new section of Magic Kingdom ... Fantasy Land.
We met up with Colton Brooks at the entrance of Belle's Castle where he escorted us right up to the front of the line to see that cute little interactive show.  (Thanks, Colton!  It was great to see you!) 
Natalie decided to give roller coasters another try today and rode Goofy's Barn Stormer with me.  She did much better on that roller coaster! 

We went through as much of the left-hand side of the park as we could before lunch.  And, of course, we would stop at every character spot for photos and autographs!  Man, it was great being taken right up to the characters for that meet and greet time!  No waiting in long lines!

For lunch, we headed, by boat, to the Wilderness Lodge for lunch with the family at Whispering Canyon.  That was lots of fun and a nice change of pace.
After lunch, we took the boat back to Magic Kingdom to meet a sweet friend from University of Mobile, Caleb Graham.  He is VERY good friends with Prince Eric and arranged a special "meet and greet" time with some characters for us.  He told me to have our group at the Car Barn in the Magic Kingdom by 2:30pm that day.  Someone came to get us and took us to a door located right beside the Car Barn.  As soon as Victoria and I walked through the door I heard a big, "Surprise!!!"  There had to be between 15-20 different characters waiting in the room for us.  It was, by far, the most special memory of our trip!  I had to hold back the tears because that was such a sweet moment.  All of our family got to meet every character, prince/princess in the room.  Even Mickey and Minnie were there!  They all signed our girl's autograph books and then we took several photos with all of them.  I think most of my family was in tears!  This was definitely a memory from our trip that I'll never forget!  Thank you, Caleb, for arranging that special moment for us!
The big "Celebrate" parade that all of the characters were in was to take place at 3pm, right after this meet and greet time.  We had a special area to stand in right at the start of the parade.  Every character that we had just seen gave us big waves and threw kisses our way.  The Fairy Godmother from Cinderella even threw two big handfuls of "fairy dust" on us as she passed by us on her float.  It was totally great!

We finished off as much of the park as we could that afternoon.  We ended our day at the Magic Kingdom by watching the Wishes fireworks show and also watching the Electric Parade.  It was a full, fun day!  Many special memories were made this day!  We feel blessed!
PS - I can't end this post without mentioning that we ran into the person responsible for making this special trip happen for us ... Ronnie Wright!  He was at the Magic Kingdom the same day we were so we were so excited to see him there!  Thanks, Ronnie, for all you did to make this trip a reality!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Day 2 - Magic Moments Are Still Being Made!!

Day two of our Magic Moments vacation was a day to remember!  We started out by going to Epcot where we spent the morning being able to skip all of the "regular folk" in line so we could have photos made with characters and ride attractions without all of that waiting.  It was great!
At lunch time the girls got all dolled up in their princess dresses to have a Princess Storybook Luncheon at Akershus restaurant in the country of Norway in Epcot.
After our special lunch at Akershus, we headed over to Hollywood where we enjoyed all the favorite attractions like Toy Story, the Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast.  I got so tickled at seeing Gaston in the Beauty and the Beast show because Gaston looked just like Mark to me!  It was uncanny!
We had a wonderful second day!  The exhaustion is just starting to set in, but we will push through it to get as much done as we can while we are here!  After all ... that is just a part of what a Disney vacation is all about!

Stay tuned ...


Saturday, February 9, 2013

"Give Kids The World" Gives Us A Fun First Day!

The Messicks have arrived in Orlando!!  We are ready to take on the city and have a blast!  We have moved into our "home away from home" and wanted you to see our cute welcome sign at our villa!

Our first day was fantastic!  It started out with a fun family visit at Give Kids The World.

My brother, Alan, his sweet wife (Mandy) and my niece (Gracie), came to visit us and view the wonderful place in which we are staying.  Have I mentioned that GKTW is awesome??  They have so many fun things for the kids to do here.  And, the workers and volunteers are so sweet!  From Victoria giving her magic star to the star fairy to knocking on a magical tree and magic pillows being made for all of our girls ... it was all a really fun experience.

The girls really loved their morning here at GKTW.  In fact, it was hard to convince them to leave after lunch to spend the rest of the day at Islands of Adventure!  They finally gave in and took our word that they would, indeed have a fun time at the theme park!

We had a great remainder of the day at Islands of Adventure.  Elyssa and Natalie rode their first kiddie roller coaster!  Elyssa loved it and well, Natalie did not.  Let's just say that Natalie will probably not get on a roller coaster for a while.  It was a lot faster than she expected.  But, she was brave to want to try it.

On the way back home from Islands of Adventure we had a little surprise in the van.  Elyssa pulled a tooth that was loose!  So, the tooth fairy is visiting our villa tonight at GKTW!

The cutest thing EVER happened tonight at our villa around bedtime!  Mrs. Merry from GKTW (the Village's Mayor's bunny wife), visited our girls!

She was all dressed in her night clothes and tucked our girls into bed.  Victoria didn't know what to think of Mrs. Merry but she did shake her hand at least once during the visit.  Mrs. Merry was great with the girls and they were laughing at her while she bounced on their beds and tossed pillows on their heads.  She kissed all of their pillows and kissed them on the foreheads before she left.  It was such a fun little visit for them.  What a great way to end a great day!

Check back tomorrow for more fun memories from our wonderful Magic Moments family vacation!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Magical Moments

Our family is beyond excited!  Victoria and our family was granted a wish through a wonderful foundation called Magic Moments.  Because Victoria had a life-threatening and life-altering illness as an infant (major heart defects that almost took her life), she was granted a wish for our entire family to visit none other than the most magical place on earth ... Walt Disney World!

We have been counting down the days and are so thrilled to be leaving on our fun adventure soon!  We will be sure to post videos and photos of the trip so we can share Victoria's first impressions of the Magic Kingdom with you!  She has never been to a place like this before so we are anxious to see how she takes to it all.

Magic Moments will be flying our family to Orlando and once in Orlando we will stay at a place called Give Kids The World.  We have heard it is wonderful!  You can find out all about GKTW at http://www.gktw.org/.  It looks like such a fun place with all sorts of great activities for all of the kids!

GKTW is providing us with three days worth of passes to the Disney Parks; we will have two days worth of passes to Universal Parks and a day at Sea World!  Can we say ... "AWESOME?!?"  And, the most wonderful part of it all is that it is completely free for our family to enjoy this fantastic vacation!  What a huge blessing!

We are so very thankful that the Lord blessed us with a great friend (Ronnie), who told us about Magic Moments and encouraged us to fill out an application for a wish.  Ronnie was so kind to come over and tell our girls the surprising news of our Walt Disney World trip recently.  Our girls were totally excited!

"Thanks Ronnie" for walking us through this process and "Thank You Magic Moments Contributors" for making this trip possible for our family!  We will never forget this experience!  And most of all, "Thank You, Lord" for once again blessing our family beyond our wildest dreams!

PS - Here is the letter that Ronnie brought our girls to read out loud the day he visited them.  It was a fun way for them to be surprised with their trip!