Snowbird Sabbatical-Volunteering at the Marathon and Lynx bus travel to MCO

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by szymcl, Oct 7, 2018.

  1. NH-to-FL

    NH-to-FL DIS Veteran

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    Ah, yes, isn't that a great feeling! Enjoy!
     
  2. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Yes, thanks!
     
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  4. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Food and Wine Festival is winding down, it has been fun and I will miss you outside kitchens!

    My husband flew in for a few days, we enjoyed the “piggy wings” and the skirt steak at the Fire BBQ stand outside of innoventions.

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    We had a few beers as well.

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    And had a nice quiet time in the DVC Member Lounge

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    But...the most fun this week was my volunteer stint at the Food and Wine Mini Marathon! It was my first time as a volunteer, so my first time to see the Volunteer pick up at the ESPN Wide World of Sports! The Expo was there as well, and a separate pick up for the race bibs. I had never seen ESPN, so that in itself was amazing!

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    My shift started with check in at ESPN at 4 a.m., I got my shirt and snack, then got on bus #13 and headed to Animal Kingdom where I was a Course Monitor. I got to watch all the runners go by and cheer them on and direct them to stay on the course. It was great! I have run in some mini marathons, but never volunteered! I also enjoyed the people cheering runners on, so to be the spectator was different. Did I have runner’s envy? No, not really!!!!!

    I didn’t take any photos of the actual race, it just didn’t seem like I should, I was working! Next time I think I will. The costumes were so great!

    I was done by 9 a.m. I met a lot of nice people who volunteer for every event. I am signed up for more shifts at the Marathon in January and I hope to get signed up for the Princess, I have some friends running in that!
     
    NH-to-FL likes this.
  5. HollanZoo

    HollanZoo Earning My Ears

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    please tell your Daughter and Son-in-Law not to fret or fear!! I'm going on 15 years post ENTIRE colon removal surgery and have had a great and full life!! i do not have an ostomy bag but an internal J-Pouch that gives me the ability to hold things until I find a restroom (something i'd lost the ability to do before having surgery)... having my entire colon removed was the best decision! it isn't for everyone but for me - it definitely gave me my life back! When I first received my diagnosis I did not understand! neither my parents nor I had ever heard of ulcerative colitis and crohn's disease.. that was in 2000... I know their road is tough right now!! Will keep them in my thoughts n prayers until they get their understanding and things level out!! It is a frustrating and embarrassing disease!!

    enjoy your new winter home!! my boss likes to spend his summers in Michigan (as we are from southern Louisiana and it gets HOT and miserable).. I think you will enjoy your winters in the warm Florida!

    Best,
    Heather
     
  6. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Thank you so much for your kind words and prayers! They are coping as best as they can, I think it has made them a bit closer, sometimes what doesn't tear you apart, makes you stronger! My prayers to you and yours as well!
     
  7. MooseBucks

    MooseBucks Living the Dream

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    Great posts and ideas for us who dream of one day being snowbirds.

    Did you have an AP before splitting your time there? My worry is getting too tired of Disney so I think we’ll end up on a coast and use our DVC points for our Disney trips.
     
  8. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Yes, I have had an annual pass for about 7 years or so. I let it expire and just buy a new one, never really renew. I have the same feeling, I would like to be on a beach someday, but I can't afford that right now, so this is a good compromise. I plan on some beach trips to see some properties around Cocoa area. But I also like being here, where there is a lot to do. I met a lot of very active volunteers when I helped at the mini marathon this weekend. Plenty of part time jobs, volunteer gigs, lots to keep me busy! If I retire and I still have my health, I will want to be busy in Indiana and Florida I think!
    Ha, I don't have any grandchildren yet, so if that happens, all these plans change immediately!
     
  9. sanapp

    sanapp DIS Veteran

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    I loved reading this! I would love to do something similar someday. I think it would be wonderful to snowbird to Orlando and work at Disney and then go home in the spring and summer. I also believe in staying as active as possible when retirement becomes a possibility. Unfortunately I have probably another 15 years or so. My vacations will have to hold me over until then.
     
  10. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Thanks! I am enjoying my time here and don't have to push myself. I work most of the day, but try to add a magical something every week.
     
  11. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Coming home from my volunteer stint at the mini marathon, I saw this!!! I'm not sure who the people on the train were in that first car after the engine? Family of the day, employees?
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  12. shannie102

    shannie102 Mouseketeer

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    Love this! You are living my dream for retirement! Can't wait to hear more adventures!
     
  13. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Thanks! So far, while I have some moments of "What am I doing?" I am pretty excited!
     
  14. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    I’m having lots of company! So far, my alone time has consisted of 2 nights! I have had visits from 2 cousins, a daughter and my husband. So, again, my mantra is, there will be plenty of time for that....

    I am getting a work routine going, and to my delight, a work out routine! I found out that my apartment includes a personal trainer, so I am getting workouts from him! I am mostly plugged in to work from 7-5 with some breaks for breakfast, lunch, walks or jogs. Occasionally I take a shopping break, but so far, no daytime park breaks. Eventually when I get caught up, I hope to explore the idea of taking my computer to a beautiful location and working from there.

    Last night though, I met my cousin at Disney Springs for a Whiskey flight at Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin Restaurant. It included 3 types of whisky, we chose the Jameson's cask, Tulleamore Dew, and a local one, another local whisky from a local distillery and a beer chaser, Funky Buddha!

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    Also had yummy Chicken biscuit sliders.

    Stopped in Edison’s, a cool Speakeasy,

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    And watched a mother daughter dance complete with neon hula hoops!

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    I wish my photos were better from this, it was super entertaining! Ha I was home in bed by 9 though...my cousin was tired and so was I!
     
    shannie102, NH-to-FL and scrappydew like this.
  15. MooseBucks

    MooseBucks Living the Dream

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    Any new updates?
     
  16. KailaH

    KailaH Earning My Ears

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    This is awesome! I can't wait to read more.
     
  17. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    Thanks!

    Due to some extra meetings at my home office, followed by a fun, family filled Thanksgiving...[​IMG]

    I have been out of touch a bit, but before I left Florida for the cold north for a few weeks, I spent my last afternoon wandering the Magic Kingdom looking at some decorations and saying goodbye to some happy haunts!

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    [​IMG][​IMG]And my very favorite…The Jingle Cruise!

    [​IMG]Then I sat down in this empty portion of Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn and Cafe to catch up with my brother on the phone (AT least I think is was Pecos Bill! Honestly this restaurant seating area goes on and on and on. It was a super busy day, I love finding a spot of quiet in the middle of the magic!


    [​IMG]I have another week of work, then I am heading back to the Sabbatical for a while! More photos next week! I am going to be looking for gingerbread houses and chocolate carousels!
     
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  18. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    I am back!

    I left on a cold snowy morning from Indianapolis at 6:50 am and arrived at 9:15 am to this nice sight![​IMG]

    The fun of the Orlando airport has not worn off yet…

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    Or this sight, leaving the terminal and heading to get by bags~

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    I had learned the joys of Lyft, so as I picked up my 50 pound bag, I pushed the button on my phone and Jose picked me up at Entrance 14 in literally 7 minutes. I was in my apartment by 10:30 am! Why did I have a 50 pound bag you ask? Don’t I have all my clothes in my apartment? Well, yes, but I am still trying to stick to that $1000 decorating budget, and I had some tables at home that would look nice as a coffee table in my living room, I needed extra blankets and sheets, Christmas decorations….you know.

    Well, on my last visits, I was a little frantic at making sure I was working enough, justifying my time out of the office, so I didn’t do as much as I should, so for this short visit, I am going to make it count! At 5 each day, I will be heading to a park, beach, hotel, something to get some flavor of the Christmas season!

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    So...Magic Kingdom awaited me on my first night home!

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    This castle is beautiful, there is a little Frozen Show where Elsa turns the castle to Ice!
    [​IMG]On this night, Magic Kingdom closed at 10, then had an extra hours Annual Pass holder event that you could pay extra for. I just stayed for a Country Bear Jamboree,
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    a Jingle Cruise in the rain, and headed back home to get a good night’s sleep! [​IMG]It was very crowded![​IMG]
     
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  19. szymcl

    szymcl Mouseketeer

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    I have given myself a challenge this week to do a Christmas activity every night! First up, see all the parks in their holiday glory, spending a few hours in one of the parks each night without spending any money and, most importantly, getting in a lot of walking miles in the evening after a day at my desk. After the parks tours, I hope to spend my evenings at some resorts, getting photos of gingerbread houses, chocolate carousels, christmas trees and poinsettias!

    Animal Kingdom was lit up [​IMG]with a beautiful Christmas Tree at the entrance. I am also trying to hit something new at each park, so here, it was the Na’vi River Journey. I snagged a fast pass and took the beautiful ride through Pandora.


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    The whole area is just beautiful at night. I also stopped by the Lion King Show. It had been quite a few years since I saw the show!

    It is still just spectacular!

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    [​IMG]To end my evening, I have been experimenting with tram versus walking to my car. So far, my walking beats the tram every time!

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    I am a fast walker though, and full disclosure, I have been wearing good hiking shoes! I’ll be checking out Hollywood Studios tomorrow!
     
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  20. KsGiGi

    KsGiGi Earning My Ears

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    I am enjoying your photos. I hope one day to be able to visit WDW at Christmas time.
     
  21. heaven2dc

    heaven2dc DIS Veteran

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    This has been so much fun! I lived shortly in Kissimmee for about 5 months during the warmer months and the humidity was too much. Maybe I should become a snowbird!
     

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