Walt Disney World – Day 5 (The Extended Post)

Epcot – Round Two!  Yes, we are an odd family, and Epcot is my kids’ favorite park.  Go adores the Kidcot stations, while the older boys like the Agent P missions and the World Showcase.  We had decided to start the day late.  The park didn’t open until 9 am, and we were SO tired from the night before, that we all slept until 7:30 am.  Instead of a fancy breakfast, we had apple juice and pop-tarts in the room, then upon arriving at Epcot we had Starbucks for breakfast.  (YUM!)  No rushing, and we still made it to Epcot at opening and parked on the second row.

 

Good Morning, Epcot!

Good Morning, Epcot!

Our first stop (second, if you count Starbucks) was for B10, CW, and I to meet Mickey, Minnie and Goofy.  The line was non-existent, and it was nice to get pictures with the Head Cheese himself.

 

Goofy

Goofy

Minnie

Minnie

We <3 Mickey!

We ❤ Mickey!

PhotoPass_Visiting_EPCOT_7049042965Pictures were great, and we made a quick run to “The Sea” to ride the Nemo Rides.  After that, the boys remembered in 2010 they did a ride called “The Sum of All Thrills”.  Basically, you create your own rollercoaster, then ride a simulator (that even goes upside down) to “ride” your creation.  GO was too short, so we let B10 and CW play, while we hung our in the Innovations area.  There are lots of areas with hands-on stuff for littles.  This is NOT a short line, because max capacity is only 150 people per hour – and one of their four simulators was down.  BUT – we got it done before the World Showcase opened up.

The next stop was Mexico.  I have never been inside the Mexico Pavilion, and it was really cool!  We rode the Grand Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros, which was cute.  Plus, it was a nice ride for GO and Went.  Rain seemed immanent (we pulled out our ponchos to cover our strollers), and the boys and I ran over to the Baby Station with Went to change him, while Auntie M and GO hung out at the Kidcot Station.  This was one of the times when we realized that you MUST give CW explicit instructions (and make him repeat them back to you).  Luckily, Auntie M and I carry cell phones.  Otherwise we would have been searching for each other for who knows how long.  We had a 12:10 pm lunch reservation at The Coral Reef, which we made with no problem.

Coral Reef  Restaurant

Coral Reef Restaurant

Went was NOT impressed with lunch in any capacity.  He didn’t want to eat, didn’t want to sit still, didn’t want any of Auntie M’s Diet Coke or straw.  He was not the only angry toddler in the restaurant, but I try (especially in nicer places) to not allow my child to be a distraction to others.  When our entrees came, I took Went outside and put him in his stroller to walk around the area.  About ten minutes later, B10 came out (he had finished his lunch), and Went was already asleep.  B10 continued to walk in a circle, while I went back inside to eat my entree.  (I have a super wonderful oldest son!)  Like most restaurants, the menu is posted outside, so I was able to order B10’s dessert, and then trade off with him when it came.

Went continued to nap as we headed back to the World Showcase.  We were on a search for a Duffy Bear and for Duffy clothes.  Between that and Meeting Mulan – that was my only real plan for the day.  The skies were grey, but not pouring rain, so our walk to China was pleasant.  Mulan was out (YAY!) and GO and I quickly got in line.  A quite rude Handler let us know that he didn’t think we would get to see Mulan, as she only had 20 minutes before she was leaving.  There were eight people in front of us…  My bigger problem was that he NEVER came back to let anyone else know anything.  By the time we made it to the front of the line (and three families had left from in front, so we were really only #5), there were over 20 families behind us – all with no idea that Mulan was leaving soon.

MULAN!

MULAN!

Not a great picture of me - but these is my two favorite Princesses!

Not a great picture of me – but these is my two favorite Princesses!

Yes, we got pictures (PhotoPass ones – another bonus to Memory Maker) and headed inside the shops of China.  GO *really* wanted a fan.  A pink fan with purple markings.  She saw on on Monday and by this point is was Thursday and it was the only “thing” she still had her heart set on.  They are relatively inexpensive, so I let her choose the “perfect” one, and she happily skipped over to the China Kidcot Station to colour a Duffy Bear.  B10 and CW were spending the time doing an Agent P mission – and Auntie M and I decided to let them continue, while we headed towards The American Adventure.

Chip and Auntie M

Chip and Auntie M

Characterpalooza!

Characterpalooza!

Upon arriving “in America”, a most coincidentally awesome thing happened.  B10’s favorite character is Stitch (with Angel – Stitch’s girlfriend – being a close second).  He was in line at Hollywood Studios and missed meeting Stitch by 2 people (they switched him out for Pluto).  So as Auntie M and I are coming up to American Adventure, we stumbled upon the Epcot Characterpolooza!  AND STITCH WAS THERE!  Auntie M, being the heroine she is, took two photos with the Chipmunks then RAN back towards B10 and CW to get them, so B10 could meet Stitch.  BEST AUNTIE M EVER!  (She got a cold Diet Coke as a Thank You!)

B10 and Stitch

B10 and Stitch

B10's Favorite Character

B10’s Favorite Character

I love this kid!

I love this kid!

Meeting Stitch

Meeting Stitch

Once Stitch was met, we went inside The American Adventure and had one of the most incredible experiences I have ever had at Walt Disney World.  I have heard the Voices of Liberty before, and enjoy them very much – but this was September 11th.  Sitting on the floor, with GO in my lap, listening to them sing the songs of each branch of the military – it brought tears to my eyes.  They had anyone who had served/was serving stand as their branch’s song was played.  Then at the end, they asked all military to stand, and sang “God Bless America”, asking any First Responders (Fire, Police, EMT) to also stand.  Quite possibly one of the most moving September 11th tributes I have been able to witness.  The fact that all my Caterpillars sat quietly and listened, that simply adds to just how powerful the moment was.

Our dinner reservation and Soarin’ FastPass times were approaching, so we finished the 1.2 mile loop (yes, that’s how long the World Showcase walk is), checking out stores as we went.  Auntie M found her perfect Christmas Ornament (in Italy), taking weird photos (in the United Kingdom), having fun at more Agent P missions (mostly B10 and CW), and NOT finding any Duffy Bear stuff.  (Disney, you are missing a huge market to not AT THE VERY LEAST have one Duffy costume per county, two (female/male) would be even better.)  Stopping only along the way to get our Disney Visa perk photos.

DSC_0043

Our Soarin’ FastPass was from 5-6pm.  We arrived about 5:30pm, and Auntie M took the first shift with the older boys (we got a child swap pass in addition to the FastPass), and I decided to take the Littles on the Living with the Land ride.  This turned out to be a GREAT idea for GO (Went kept trying to leap out of the boat).  She loves salad, and was SO BEYOND EXCITED to see “baby salad” growing!  When I told her we would be eating that “baby salad” for dinner, I think it made her day!  (Well, that and the pink/purple fan from earlier!)

She asked Auntie M and CW to take her back on the ride, while B10 and I were riding Soarin’.  I love that crazy girl!  (I have no photos – Went SERIOUSLY was trying to leave the boat headfirst.)  At this point, B10 and CW watched “The Circle of Life” (Conservation video starring Timon and Pumbaa), while Auntie M rode UP and DOWN the escalator with Went, and GO and I sat and hung out.  The boys got out right as we needed to check in for our Garden Grill dinner.  (Which we ended up waiting 20 minutes to get in to…)

Someone is SO not sure about Farmer Mickey...

Someone is SO not sure about Farmer Mickey…

Farmer Mickey!  (The Garden Grill)

Farmer Mickey! (The Garden Grill)

After dinner, it was back to searching for Duffy Bear (finally found in the big Mouse Gear store at the front), a quick ride on Test Track (no line!), then a few photos, before we headed out for the night.  We did stop at the Photo store, where each of the adults received two free 5×7 photos (printed out VERY quickly and put in pretty folders for us).  Normally you get one – but we had our coupons from Monday, and no problem using both (they could see we also had Monday photos on our Memory Maker package).

B10 helped her make a "pink" car

B10 helped her make a “pink” car

GO's car she designed

GO’s car she designed

Little Girl's Favorite Ride

Little Girl’s Favorite Ride

Disney Visa

Disney Visa

I wanted to get back to the resort with time to pack tonight, since we were checking out VERY early in the morning.  I also had to do package pickup (of our Hollywood Studio purchases) at the Resort Gift Shop.  As a surprise, we gave B10 and CW each a coupon for 100 free tokens, plus $7 to use in the arcade – AND $15 for the gift shop (with the rule – they couldn’t use the gift shop money for the arcade).  They did so well this week, really being helpful, and this was their final “gift”.  I managed to get everything packed up and ready to go (to load in the morning), and both littles bathed and in bed by the time they came back.  B10 was just not tired, so while CW took a bath and fell into bed, B10 went out to the sandy beach and looked for animals for a little while longer.

Our Guardian Frog

Our Guardian Frog

This was about the most perfect last night I could imagine.

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

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