It’s finally happening! After three very long years, we’re finally going to “Return to Disney!” Planning a second Disney vacation is very different from planning our first trip. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be posting about some of the things that have changed, and some of the things I’m doing differently this time around.

Fresh from our resort and ready to go to Magic Kingdom

Fresh from our resort and ready to go to Magic Kingdom – they were so young!

I’ve planned this trip in so many different ways, and now that it’s real I’m so ready to toss the kids in the car and head to Florida. I’m a little worried that this next trip can’t possibly live up to my memories and my expectations. After all, most people don’t get so obsessed over a vacation that they start blogging about it. This trip will be different. I won’t be able to step onto the Walt Disney World Resort and suddenly take up right where I left off the afternoon we left back in 2010.

The kids are older this time. In 2010, we had a potty-training 2 year old who needed to be carried by the end of the day. We only really ended up with half a day in each park because we went back to the resort to nap every afternoon and didn’t get up until dinnertime. I’m hoping this time around we’ll be able to stay all day and do some of the things we missed.

When we ran away to Disney last time around, two of our kids had just been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. We were in shock and a little bit of panic. Now, I’m the one giving advice to new autism moms, talking them off the ledge. And the progress the kids have made! (Ok, I get to brag a little here….) Three years ago, I knew that Disney offered in-room childcare, but we didn’t really look into it. Leaving our kids with someone who didn’t know them and their quirks, who didn’t have specialized training, just didn’t seem like an option. This time around, we’re going to go for it! A real date night, with babysitting for the kids. Because they can handle it now. (YES!)

There will be dozens of other details, but for now, I just wanted to pop in and share the big news with you. And let you know that life is finally settling down a bit, so I can get back to regular blogging here. (YAY!) I’ve missed my Disney friends while I’ve been hiding out. How’ve you been? Did I miss much?