#mcdanfamloveswdw: Day 4

ICYMI:

Click HERE to see the photos we shared on Instagram from our trip. 

Click Here if you missed Day 1.

Click Here if you missed Day 2.

Click Here for Day 3.

Shew, I’d planned to lump these posts together, 2 days at a time but once I start rambling, I can’t stop and before I know it the post is already too long covering just one day. What is wrong with me? I just love Disney and I want to remember the details!

Saturday, May 9th. We were up and at ’em at 630am in order to make it to our 8am dining reservation at Tusker House, located in the Africa section of Animal Kingdom. We arrived at Animal Kingdom around 730am before being escorted through the completely empty, very cool looking park.

001 {side note}: See how I have my fit bit around my tank top strap? Yeah, that’s because it doesn’t work when pushing a stroller. This was a constant annoyance during our vacation! The main reason I bought the dang thing and it ended up being a hassle. 002 005

I was so excited to try Tusker House – they offer plenty of American breakfast fare with lots of additional African dishes we had fun sampling. The set up and the atmosphere in the restaurant was beautiful.007

First ones in the restaurant!010 011

Jungle Juice was a treat! Orange juice, Guava Juice, and Passionfruit juice – it’s delicious. I don’t know or care how much sugar we consumed during this meal. 012

The bad things about character breakfasts… the kids are so excited for the characters to come to the table that they have a hard time concentrating on eating. Understandable. Buffet style is awesome for value (hello, all you can eat!), convenience, variety, and all taste preferences…but if you are gone from your table to fill up your plate when Mickey comes around, you have to wait til he makes it back (or ask your server to have him make a special trip – they will). Also, the character interactions happen so fast and I am still slow and unsure when it comes to manual settings on my camera so I just turned it on Auto or no flash and there is a lot of blur in many of the pictures. One other note as far as pictures at character breakfasts are concerned – the table are close together and I had to spend a lot of time trying to crop other families out of our special moments. 014 019 021 022All in all, it’s still a super fun experience and just seeing how excited the kids were to have the characters come to us was worth any of the hassle involved. I made the mistake of saying “we’re going to eat breakfast with ___” (fill in any character’s name), which made Dexter think that those sweet, huge stuffed animals were actually going to sit down with us and cram donuts in their furry faces. He was a little disappointed but understood once I explained.

Something that is extra awesome about early character breakfasts waaay in the back of the park is when breakfast is over, you are already in the back of the park. Breakfast ended for us right around 9 (park opening) so we rushed right over to Expedition Everest. We hadn’t made FastPass+ reservations since the boys couldn’t ride it. But wait.

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I went first and walked right onto the ride with no wait. As soon as I returned, Ryan did the same. I was standing outside near the Standby entrance when I noticed the measuring device. I looked at Theo then back at the measuring thingy. Then said “oh my God!!” Theo and Dexter asked “what!?” 20 times as I practically ran, dragging them over. I told Theo to get measured and guess what? He hit that 44″ mark, no problem. You guys, I had a major moment here. I was ecstatic on one hand because he was ecstatic and dying to ride Everest. With me. I was freaking out because I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that my sweet, tiny, innocent, little bitty baby boy was BIG ENOUGH to ride a BIG roller coaster. It doesn’t go upside down and there are far scarier rides at non-Disney parks. But for Disney, for me to have not expected it, for him to be so excited, for me to be riding a big roller coaster with my little (but apparently not so little anymore) son…I had a moment. Proud, sad, excited, and full of adrenaline, all at once. We quickly dragged the strollers into the gift shop so we could greet Ryan as he exited the ride. Theo and I both were blabbing about it before he was even within earshot and Ryan had the same reaction that I did. We rode it and HE LOVED it. He talked about it the entire trip and STILL talks about it every time we talk about our trip (he subsequently rode Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom and loved it as well). 024 025One of our favorite family moments on this trip, for sure. What a great start to our day!

As was the case in every park, the free play/exploration area was a hit. Ryan and I had fun too – I wish this was our backyard!026 030 031

The Tree of Life. My little thrill seekers love adrenaline rushes that come from exciting rides but they did not like It’s Tough to Be a Bug inside of the Tree of Life. Too many unexpected interactive elements combined with darkness. We loved finding animals “carved” into the tree.032

Ryan had a daily date with slushies. Obsessed. 036

Playing the drums. 039 040041 045 048 050 051We loved the Kilimanjaro Safari, as usual.

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The boys adored Animal Kingdom. Dinosaur was a favorite ride – we went on it twice. I think I enjoyed the Finding Nemo show and Ryan enjoyed Flights of Wonder more than the boys. We all got lucky on Kali River Rapids – we were refreshingly splashed but not soaked like the other half of our boat. We shared treats. We were hot and tired and decided to call it a day a couple of hours before the park closed. We missed the Lion King show (but saw it last time) and the Maharajah Jungle Trek (in all the times I’ve been to Animal Kingdom, I’ve never done this). 054 057 058 063More swimming at the hotel on Saturday night to ease into Mother’s Day on Sunday morning!

See, I’ve done it again. Up next – a day off from the parks, a little break from being on the go. We had a nice relaxing Mother’s Day.

xo,

~C~

 

 

 

 

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