Sunday, January 15, 2012

Disney World, Day 5, January 6th

I sit here reminiscing about this entire day, and the accomplishments that Kathleen and I have made to get here. We were able to run 5K, that's 3.1 miles, friends. That's pretty awesome! So it deserves it's own Blog entry.
To sum up, We did it! We survived the Family Fiesta Fun Run 5K.

And then we were really Crazy.

Then we spent an entire day at Epcot.

Christopher picked this first ride when he made his list days before. At the time, few wanted to ride it, but when the time came, Everyone was excited to go on Spaceship Earth, aka The Epcot Ball!

Even Sam!

Afterwards, the guys ran for Fastpasses for Test Track, and we played games under Spaceship Earth. The kids all got a big kick out of this modern magnetic shuffleboard.

When we all hooked up again, we headed to the World Showcase. Our first stop was to meet Duffy bear. If you're unfamiliar with Duffy, his story just came about in 2010, when Minnie made a stuffie for Mickey to travel with on a boat ride and take pictures on their travels. Then all their friends wanted their own Duffies, so Minnie made it so everyone can get one. We cashed in some Disney Movie Rewards points to get our own My First Duffie bear. They sell outfits for him all over the parks, and there are hidden mickeys all stitched into his patterning, like around his eyes, on his pawprints. We wanted to see how the kids responded to Duffy before investing in bears and clothes for all. We lucked out one evening, and got to watch the Duffy Story book read on tv at bedtime. He was a Big Hit!

In person he was even sweeter. We took our Duffy to meet Duffy, and Duffy got a big kick out of our little duffy doll, he rocked it like a baby, and insisted that little Duffy be in the picture with Big Duffy.

Our first stop was to the Kim Possible mission station. The big kids were all given phones, and given a mission in China. These missions are great, even the littles wanted in on the action. But you can take the cell phone to the designated area, and something will happen, like a statue will rise out of the water of a decorative pond, or a hologram appears on a statue.

This Mission sent Chris and Emily to the Temple in China, where we were saving the world from evil monkeys or something like that.

We stopped for snacks in China, and we came up with the idea to eat and drink ourselves around the world. However, we only made it through three countries: China, Norway, and Mexico, before we needed to get back to Test Track for our FastPass times. I may have to blog about our scrumptious food and drinks separately too. ;)

So Good!

I had never spent any time in Mexico, and now I'm completely shocked as to why not. First of all, we found Donald!

Hooray for Donald! He was the first stuffed character that Kristin would go for. It was his 15th anniversary for the half marathon, that Eric was going to be running on Saturday. He helped sponser our race. Really, he was quite enchanting to all of us on this day. Last visit I went crazy for Minnie Mouse, this year it was all about Donald! Mickey Mouse. DONALD DUCK!

Inside Mexico, we found an adorable bazaar full of great shopping. I could've spent half the day in there. Imagine my Joy at finding a ride in the belly of that aztec temple. It's was like It's a Small World meets Mexico starring Donald Duck. Heavenly!

We loved visiting Mexico, but had to get back to serious matters, like Rides! I did learn, that my child has no fear. I didn't really have any desire to go on Test Track, but Emily did, and Kathleen was talking it up. OK, Fine. So we fast passed and riderswapped, while the menfolk took the big kids, we curled up in the Baby Station changing diapers and watching cartoons. By the time they found us, Emily wanted rather to watch tv, so Chris and Kathleen and I took to the Test Track.

Did I mention my child has no fear? He was simply screaming, "THIS IS AWESOME!!!!!!"

The one and only time we had trouble with any Castmembers was right after Test Track. As we were leaving that ride, we encountered our crew just off the Gift shop surrounded by half a dozen new cars. Apparently, GM has set up a show room for cars, just as the ride ends. Free advertising, I guess. We learned later that the kids had been playing happily amongst the new cars. They were being Followed by a Castmember. At one point, all 4 of them were happy and quiet inside one of the big ones, they even closed themselves inside, happily sitting on the seats pretending to drive. Grateful for a moment's quiet, one of the Dad's joked with the Castmember, well, good thing they don't hurt anything. The Castmember rather rudely told him to get the kids out of the car, they weren't allowed to touch them. Seriously? It's a RIDE!?! In DISNEY WORLD?!! What kind of ride at Disney World doesn't allow kids to climb on stuff. And if you don't want kids on your stuff, don't bring it to bloody Disney World! Heck, if you don't like kids, don't come anywhere near Disney World, that one is for the curmudgeon on the bus that got shitty with Eric when we weren't moving fast enough on the bus. However, we got even in both instances. As the curmudgeon had to stand, and had to spend the ride getting kicked by Sarah who was having a full bodied tantrum from being separated from her mother. And the employee? Well, with all 5 kids out of the cars, he had to mad dash all over the place to observe them all. Ha!
It was actually better when they were contained and quiet, huh smarta$$?!

So we went and drowned our sorrows sampling in the Coke cool room, it's a Coke gift shop, with some sample of international coca cola flavors. All the kids went bonkers, trying every flavor.

From our soda buzz to the Land, where we got to ride through the Biotech garden. It's an entire hydroponic garden, some veggies growing upside down, or through hanging tubes, and no dirt. One cool one was the garden built on top of an aquarium: the fish nibble the roots, and get their nutrition through the plants, and the plants get water and 'fertilizers' from the fish. This is one of the coolest rides for me, as I used to work doing this sort of thing. I wonder if I could get a job there? I must say though it was a little above Christopher.

However, we hammed it up, by saying see all these fruits and vegetables that are growing here? We're going to go eat them upstairs for dinner! So we did! We had a bit of a wait for dinner, but the kids made the best of it.

We had dinner at the Garden Grill, a rotating restaurant over the land ride, served Family style (aka all you can eat) with visits from Mickey, Pluto, Chip and Dale.

The Chipmunks definitely stole the show! Chip is the one with the little black nose, the more serious one, and Dale is the goofy one. My boys were thrilled to see both of them.

Pluto doesn't ever have to say a word, and he's always a hit. All he has to do is show up and he makes Christopher laugh. Getting him to once again sign our books on his nose cracks them up. Last time Chris kept wanting to tough the whiskers, this time it was the ears. We love Pluto.

It's Farmer Mickey! Don't you just LOVE the suspenders?! Since it's the Garden grill, and the farm from the land ride is right there, it's a whole farming theme we got going on. Mickey spent a lot of time bumping noses with the littles to get them smiling. So this was our last shot before we hit the road.

We realized that the rides were going to close down before we were done with dinner. Both boys had been requesting the Nemo ride for a couple days, they love all things Nemo. So our little group of four made a Mad dash to Nemo and Friends, formerly known as The Seas ride. Just in time for them to shut it down right behind us. Whew! And we got a little photo session in with the Nemo statues in the evening.

Please ignore the fact that Sam is covered in macaroni. "RONI" was his favorite meal, anywhere we ate he wanted Roni. And Roni ended up Everywhere. Since Eric was going to have an early morning for his race the next day, the half marathons started at 5:30, but he had to be on a bus at 4, at least. So he wanted to go to bed early. So he took the Roni child back to the villa for an early night.
Meanwhile, the rest of us all got separated for a bit because everyone needed to go to the restroom. After coming back from changing Chris (his flushes weren't 100% effective, we blame the water and a failed new catheter brand) I realized that I had sent Eric back with the backpack with Chris's fancy pass in it. The Julius's and I had been thinking of Hopping over to Magic Kingdom and riding Buzz Lightyear, Chris really wanted to do that one. I thought we might need our Special Pass. When I realized I'd sent it on, I went up to the nearest castmember and told them, a. that I had the special pass but sent it on with the hubs and baby, b. could I get another one here?, c. where do I go? When he told me where Guest Services was, I guess my poker face revealed I was less than enthusiastic about that walk. I was thinking OK, I'll just head there, when he said, Hang On, let me talk to someone. Sweet! He comes back and says, OK, go to the lady XXX downstairs at the fastpass desk for Soarin' she'll give you a pass to get on that ride. Huh? Soarin'? I wasn't planning on doing that. But... Chris is now 40 inches, and he can ride it. We had discussed doing that, but decided we didn't have time. Now I was getting a free ride in for just Chris and I. OK. So we went in, and we rode Soarin'! And surprise surprise, Chris thought IT WAS AWESOME!! He started to get a little nervous when we buckled in, but once we really were soaring, he couldn't tell the difference between ride and reality. What a Blessing for me to be able to share it with him.

When I found the Julius Family, they'd been shopping, and thinking, and we thought we might try the IllumiNations Fireworks show a go. Emily had been very nervous about fireworks, but we'd seen partial the night before from our hotel, and all the kids had these awesome headphones that Mike picked out, so we figured, what the hey, let's try it! So Mike scoped out a great view for us to watch the fireworks, and we camped out for about 20 minutes before it started, just long enough to snag some desserts. ;)

What a neat show! I thought the kids might get scared with the fire and light, but they did great, and handled everything very well.

And IlluminNations was Beautiful!

Next time we'll really go around the world.

And then we went home and Crashed. But it was this night, when our bodies started to give out, and our minds started going that we realized it might have been a good idea to take a day off somewhere in the middle. Oh well, too late. Eric's big races were to come, and tomorrow was to be our last day in the parks.