Friday, November 30, 2012

Disney Day Three: Magic Kingdom

Our third day in Orlando was a big one; it was finally time to do the flagship park, Magic Kingdom. I was most excited about going to MK because it contains lots of things I knew Riley would love. We even got to go on a cool ride before we actually entered the park: per LPb’s advice, we parked at Epcot and took the monorail into MK. Riley thought the monorail ride was awesome and asked to do it again many more times throughout the week.



The plaza in front of the main entrance into MK was pretty crowded, but we managed to take a few family photos before heading into the park. It was an absolutely beautiful day!



Once we were in, all twelve of us gathered together on Main Street with Cinderella’s castle behind us for a special group photo. We were wearing our specially made “Geauxing to See Dat Mouse” shirts, which elicited many compliments from strangers all day. Thanks for the super cute shirts, Grandma!


Photo obligations completed, we split up, most going to Tomorrowland and Space Mountain. However, Grandma, Kenny, Riley, and I decided to go back to the very front of the park and the Town Square Theater. Why, you may ask? Well, because Mickey was there, of course! To make it even better, a random lady stopped us as we were walking in and handed us three FastPasses that got us to the very front of the line. I’m pretty sure I did not sufficiently thank her, so, whoever you were, thank you so much kind lady!



We got some really cute pictures of Riley greeting Mickey. My boy is completely taken with the Mouse, and it was so obvious at these meet and greets. The smiles that appeared on his face will stay in my memory for a long, long time.




After leaving Mickey, the four of us walked back to Fantasyland. We waited in a fairly long line for Peter Pan and got on It’s a Small World right after. Then we went over to Liberty Square to meet everyone else for a delicious and nutritious al fresco lunch of hot dogs and chips.

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We all decided to take an afternoon break at this point, but the others wanted to do just one more ride. So Kenny, Riley, and I waved goodbye and started the hour-long journey back to the house. Riley and I both got decent naps, and all of us were ready to head back out to the park for some evening fun around 6pm. Once back on Main Street, we were captivated by the castle all lit up. Simply gorgeous.


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While Grandpa and Kenny unsuccessfully attempted to ride Space Mountain (the parks were crowded and lines were long all week), Grandma and I took Riley to Winnie the Pooh. I completely forgot how crazy psychedelic part of Pooh’s story was, but the ride was fun and Riley seemed to enjoy it. Riley also had a blast in line; there were so many things for him to do while waiting, which is so smart on Disney’s part. They need to upgrade more of their kiddie rides to include things like Pooh had.

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After Pooh, everyone came together in Liberty Square to ride the Haunted Mansion. When we emerged unscathed, some of us decided we were hungry, so Grandpa, Jaimi, Kenny, and I ducked into Columbia Harbor House for a late dinner while the rest of the crew went over to Adventureland to climb the Swiss Family Robinson Tree House, which Riley apparently loved.


We met back up again after and headed over to Tomorrowland. Kenny and Steve got lucky and were able to do Space Mountain while Paul, Jaimi, Nicholas, James, Zac, Riley, and I rode the Astro Orbiter and Grandma and Debbie rode the PeopleMover. Then we went over to the Speedway, and Kenny took Riley for a ride in a racecar, which he also loved.


At this point it was around 11pm, and the Wishes nighttime spectacular show was starting. We stood in the middle of the path outside the Speedway entrance and watched a very impressive display of fireworks.


One quick group pic in front of the gorgeous castle and a boat ride back to the parking lot, and we were finally back home. It was a long day but a really fun one. Riley got into his bed at 12:30am but he handled the super late night just fine. I may have been more tired than he was!


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Our next day was much more laid back, a change which I welcomed. We did have to do a bit of driving, but our day involved meeting a very special dolphin.

More Disney recap posts coming next week, but there will be something up tomorrow. Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Disney Day Two: Hollywood Studios

After a fun first day at Epcot, we spent our second day at Hollywood Studios. Grandpa, Kenny, Riley, and I hung out together most of the morning. We spotted Woody and Buzz, played in the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids playground, and, most special of all, we met Mickey for the very first time.


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However, the rest of our group went to get in line really early: all three older boys really wanted to be part of a Jedi Training show, and only 45 kids can participate each day. Their early rising paid off, though: Nicholas, James, and Zac got to be Padawans in the 11am show and fight Darth Vader on stage.







I think it’s safe to say they all had the time of their lives.

After conquering Darth Vader, we rushed over to the 50’s Prime Time Cafe for a special lunch. Debbie turned 40 on November 19, and we feasted in honor of her. Still no one has owned up to arranging the birthday cupcake our waiter presented to her at the end of our meal, though…..I suppose it shall remain a mystery. Happy birthday, Deb!

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Once sufficiently stuffed (I ended with LPb’s recommended PB&J milkshake…sounds weird but actually very tasty), we hightailed it to the back of the park and the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show. This was one of Kenny’s and Steve’s favorite things we saw the whole week, and I have to concur. It was pretty awesome. And Lightning McQueen even made a guest appearance!


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We split up again after the stunt show. While most went off to find more thrilling rides, Grandma, Kenny, Riley, and I did one more thing: the Disney Junior Live show. Riley started to fall asleep on our mad dash across the park to make it to the theater in time for the next show, but he perked up when he realized he would get to see some familiar {puppet} faces.


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We all came together again back at the house for Debbie’s homemade birthday dinner of steak, roasted potatoes and veggies, and polenta cakes. Kudos to Kenny for doing most of the work. Everything was a big hit, and I think the birthday girl enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere with her family surrounding her. Second day: done.



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The big one is up next: Magic Kingdom. We went there on Tuesday, and it was the first day we took a break and went back to the house to rest in the afternoon. However, this was also the day we were out the latest: the boy didn’t get into bed until after midnight!

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