Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
D, Toni, M, and I at the Songwriter's Dinner
Sadly, the evening had to end. We blissfully returned to our hotel to pack and dream sweet dreams of being serenaded by one brilliant Aussie!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Translation Phones - they have phones with two headsets. The doctor picks up one, the parent picks up the other. They press a button and within minutes, a translator is on the phone. That way the two can communicate face-to-face. Our tourguide said that there is a patient from a small country in Africa and they were able to communicate with the parents through the phone.
Patient Rooms - most of their patients are out-patient. However, when a patient needs hospital care, they obviously have the beds for it. Each room is a suite with a parent room and a child's room. Every child has a Wii. The parents have internet and a bed. The new Chili's Care Center has trash shoots, so that the trash can be picked up in the hall and the child isn't disturbed. These are just a few examples.
School - they have tutors on-site. The teachers get the work from the child's home school, so that they stay on-track. They have a Kindergarten graduation and a Senior Prom.
Child-Life Specialists - these great people make sure that the children understand what is happening to them. They also work with the siblings of the patients.
Kay Kafe - this BEAUTIFUL cafeteria has multiple areas. The children are often picky as they are going through Chemo. All the options allow them to hopefully find something they can stomach... make your own pizzas, ice creams, International foods, salads, soups, and sandwiches. Doctors, nurses, ALSAC, researchers, patients... everyone eats in there.
EVERYTHING is paid for.... housing, transportation, meals/groceries, treatment.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
I did not spend last night catching up on my blog and reading other blogs, while I was working. Nope, not me! I did not eat a muffin once I got off work at 5am, right before going to bed this morning. I did not oversleep because I use my phone as an alarm clock and the battery went dead! I most certainly did not spend the rest of the day in my pajamas! That would be lazy of me on my "day off." I also did not spend the day on the couch catching up on the TV that I missed in December. 3 episodes of 'Desperate Housewives', 3 of 'Brothers and Sisters', and 2 of 'Cold Case' were not my agenda for the day. That would be just plain ludicrous! I did not call the station Hotline and talk to J about 'Brothers and Sisters' and other station gossip for 30 minutes, while she was on the air! I did not cross my fingers that my walking buddies would not want to walk tonight because then I would have had to get dressed. Nope.... not me, because I haven't spent the last two holiday weeks eating way too much and I didn't need the exercise! I haven't waited with baited breath all day for the premiere of 'The Bachelor.' I did not completely fall for Jason last season and hope that he'd be the new Bachelor when DeAnna broke his heart.
We got there about 3pm and stayed until about 11pm. It was CROWDED. Here's a little secret.... Native Floridians aren't used to waiting in lines at Disney. Those of us with passes go when no one else is there, so we can ride Splash Mountain, Thunder Mountain, Rockin' Rollercoaster, etc in like 30 minutes. Yeah, well not this day, lol. It was TWO HOUR waits for the big rides. Rides that usually have like a 5-10 minute wait time were an hour long. Plus, just walking was like swimming through a sea of people... it was INSANE. Again... not used to it.
Haigen's absolute favorite ride is Splash Mountain. When we first arrived, the Holiday Parade was just starting. Once that was over, we went to Splash Mountain. However, once we saw the wait, we decided to get FastPasses. Keep in mind, it was like 4pm and the FP was for 8:30-9:30!!!!Poor Haigen was like, "Why do we have to wait so long?"
Despite the crowds, we did manage to have fun. We rode The Haunted Mansion, the Riverboat (something we never do, but there was no wait, so it seemed like a good idea, lol), Mickey's PhilharMagic 3D show, Cinderella's Carousal, Mad Hatter Tea Cups, and the RaceTrack. We ate dinner right before the fireworks. I think I was more excited about the fireworks than Haigen, because they were the special Holiday Fireworks, lol.
Then, it was time for us to ride Splash Mountain. Only, at this point, it was FREEZING. The regular wait was down to 20 minutes, while Thunder Mountain next door was still at 100, lol. That's how cold it was, lol. We went on it, still, because the poor kid had been waiting 5 hours, lol.
He tried to convince me to go a second time since the line was so short, but I put my foot down. I was shivering, at that point, lol. Instead, we headed over to Adventureland and rode Pirates of the Carribean. FUN ride, with little appearances by Captain Jack Sparrow. The flying carpets had a 5 minute wait, so we rode that twice. By that point, even Haigen was getting cold, so we decided to pack it up. We went to get a treat from the bakery... watched the Light Parade from the window and then headed home!
We'd wanted to go look at all the decorations the night we went to Hollywood Studios and The Grand Floridian, but there just wasn't enough time, so I was really glad to get to see everything.
(I forgot my camera, so I borrowed these pics from my friend Ellen. Thanks, Ellen!)
The view on Main Street.... so pretty. You can't quite see it, but the tree at the end of the street is HUGE.
The insane crowds were worth seeing Cinderella's Castle like this... all glittering and dripping with lights. It was so gorgeous.