Thursday, December 9, 2010

NCTE, Disney, & a Hair Net

I've had some haters on my blog recently.  I admit, I deserve it.  Thanks for being loyal, even when I'm not. No good excuses... Just life.  BUT, I'm coming back!  Tomorrow, I'm going to participate in Kelly's Korner "Show Us Your Christmas Tree" and on Monday, I'll be linking up to The Nester's Christmas Tour of Homes.

Slowly but surely...

Anyways, today, I thought I'd recap my trip to Disney, oh, several weeks ago. (I still don't have many pictures, but the one I really wanted is at the bottom.  Just wait.)

Here I am with my two co-presenters.  Mona (left) and Courtney (right).  Courtney and I went to Clemson together, and she and Mona both teach in Columbia, South Carolina now.  They are pretty much my teaching inspirations!  Courtney, seriously, got me through my first years.  Most of my "good" ideas come from her.  They are both so passionate and creative -- I'd give anything to have my kids in their classes one day!!  (Maybe Jeff and I should consider Columbia as our next location?)

The purpose of our trip to Orlando - as you may know - was the present at the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention.  But, not to worry, we squeezed in plenty of fun too!!

We stayed here - at the Disney Coronado Springs Resort:

I'm going to be honest, it didn't really look like this in person... But, it was still pretty.  And, either way, this was where the convention was based, so it was a perfect fit for us.  Plus, we got all the perks of Disney - discounted park rates, free transportation, etc. etc.

On Thursday night, right when we first arrived, we did a quick tour of Epcot.  I LOVED it!  Honestly, I was so fascinated by how much detail went into designing each "country" in the park.  We ate dinner at a Moroccan restaurant, watched belly dancers, and sat under a pagoda to see the closing fireworks presentation.  Breathtaking!

On Friday, after an eventful morning of conference sessions -- where I got to hear Erin Gruwell from "Freedom Writers" speak and meet Lois Lowry of The Giver -- we ventured over to Magic Kingdom.  It was magical all right!   I LOVED it!  (The above picture is in front of Cinderella's palace after the "Christmas Lighting Ceremony.")  It was beautiful and so full of energy!  I can't wait to go back with my family one day!

Then, on Saturday, we stayed at our resort to attend conference sessions and prepare for our own presentation.  Our session was titled: "Beyond the Musical Hook: Using Lyrics and Language to Promote Literacy in the Reluctant Learner." We had a small crowd but, if I do say so myself,  it was a big success.

Finally, Saturday night, we planned a celebration dinner out in Downtown Disney.  We made reservations at the restaurant Bongos because - duh - it is owned by Gloria Estefan.  When we got there, everything was PERFECT.  The rhythm totally got us! ;) The restaurant was hopping, and we had the perfect seats outside overlooking the water.  It felt just like Miami! We were SO excited and SO hungry!  Just as we were finishing up perusing the menu to make our selections, the waitress delivered a warm basket of Cuban bread.  We dug right in.  BUT, to my surprise, when I went for a second slice... I found... A HAIR NET!!!
This picture can't even do it was SO disgusting.  I have never seen anything so repulsive.  (And, Gloria - if you are reading - I'm sorry to humiliate you this way... But, really, a hair net?)

Needless to say our celebratory dinner was moved to a new location for a slightly less exciting Italian feast. :)

Either way, at the end of the day (weekend), hair net and all, we had a wonderful time; AND, I can now officially cross off two more items on my 30 Before 30 List.
15. Present at a national teaching conference (NCTE 11/20/10) 
20. Go to Disney World (I’ve never been) (11/18/ 2010 & 11/19/2010)


  1. how exciting (minus the hair net) did you see any other really good presentation!
    don't hoard the teaching secrets!

  2. Cinderella's castle looks amazing!


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