I love the kind of travel experience that shatters all your expectations and prejudices. Sometimes Iâ€™m unaware Iâ€™ve had them until they disappear.
I had learned about two months in advance that on my trip to Florida with Experience Kissimmee and Global Resort Homes I would be travelling with a handful of mommy bloggers/family travel experts. I considered pulling out of the trip for awhile. I didnâ€™t know how Iâ€™d relate to the others, and it appeared that the ladies were already acquainted with one another.
But damn, Iâ€™m a sucker for warm weather and new experiences. When I expressed my concerns to Joanne, my best friend with a two-year-old, she looked at me like I was an idiot. â€œCandice,â€ she said. â€œTheyâ€™re going to be away from their kids for four days. What do you think is going to happen?â€
This was confirmed when Tara, our amazing social media specialist from Global Resort Homes, uploaded a photo of our well-stocked vacation home.
The others were all coming from Ontario: Candace of Life in Pleasantville from Ottawa, Jen of Urban Moms from Toronto, and Nadine of Child Mode from northern Ontario. Also on the trip were our trusty guides: Tara, Nori, and Rochelle.
We spent the first evening getting to know each other while our in-house cook served up a gourmet barbecue and we admired an unreal fiery sunset as it lit up our private pool and sauna. I grabbed a beer and immediately went for a swim. With seven ladies under one roof, I had expected a Big Brother situationâ€¦but the possibility of being stressed out or distracted was pretty slim to none.
Hilariously, I was the first person in bed that evening. I blamed my bodyâ€™s inability to cope with the changes in time zones after leaving Iceland.
But then I was the first person to hit the sack the next nightâ€¦and the night after that. It wasnâ€™t even that the house was filled with party raging moms, I was just passing out all over the place and the moms were all way more hardcore than me.
These ladies, however? Badass to the max.
I was tired of being the â€˜fraidy cat in the group, so when our Saturday morning sunrise hot air balloon excursion rolled around, I manned up.
And by manned up I mean I sat in the bottom of the basket while we launched a thousand feet into the sky. I slipped an Ativan and managed to stand up and even enjoy myself, eventually. Alright, I was high as a kite. Iâ€™ve been quoting as saying, â€œI love everythingâ€ as I leaned over the basket trying to snap a good photo.
And yet I still kept passing out all over the place.
The truth about mommy bloggers? Theyâ€™re a great deal more than mommy bloggers. Theyâ€™re talented writers and loving women, and brave as hell, and they know how to have a good time.
Even more shocking: thereâ€™s a great deal to do in the Kissimmee area other than the major theme parks. Who knew?! Iâ€™ll be rolling out those posts over the next few weeks. But for now, cheers to my #KissCanada ladies, and hereâ€™s hoping we meet again!