Friday, March 26, 2010

How Can 2 Kids Make Such a HUGE Mess?

That's the question I ask myself thrice daily when the kids are done eating. It's a massive re-con job to get their eating area un-filthy.

Enjoying the Spring Breeze

Thursday was a perfectly lovely 72 degree day, and it was the first time that I was able to open the windows this spring. Michael decided to curl up by the window to do some drawing on his Magna-doodle.

Katie-Silly

Katie is becoming quite the silly girl. She loves to do funny things to get a laugh, which is often.

The Best Part of Baking

Michael got to skip rest time today and got to help me bake. He had fun adding ingredients, but had a MUCH better time licking the beaters and the spatula.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Disney's Hollywood Studios

On Sunday, we headed out to Disney's Hollywood Studios. We enjoyed shows and exhibits and all manner of Toy Story mania.
Michael wears Mickey's big hat.

Before we left the hotel, though, Katie was sure to grab her shades. Little did she know that we would NOT be needing them...

The first place we headed was to a crazy-popular ride called Toy Story Mania. We grabbed a Fast Pass (which gives you a time later in the day to come and not have to wait in line), and I was amazed that there were no open spots until 5:40 in the evening. Thanks for the tip to get that one first, Brandy! So we checked out the Toy Story gift shops, and enjoyed all manner of Toy Story paraphernalia.

We did eventually get to ride Toy Story Mania as the last event of our trip. It was definitely a fun ride, and Michael had a blast!

Katie snuggles Jessie, the Cowgirl.

For lunch, we ate at THE Pizza Planet. Yes, the one from Toy Story. Michael was looking forward to this for so long!

Oooooo, pizza (said like the aliens).

Winking like Jessie.
We saw quite a few exhibits & films on how the animators get from the drawing board to the actual movie. We also watched the story of Walt Disney and how he took a few ideas and a little animated mouse to create the Disney empire.

In the afternoon, it started raining. Not just sprinkling, but down-right pouring. We called it an adventure, bought some ponchos, and enjoyed the minimal lines for the shows. A little rain can't put a damper on Disney fun!

Jon looks annoyed, but I think he's eating a snack. He started out wondering if this trip would be worth his time, but half way through, he was having a blast. By the end, he was saying how great it was that we took this trip! Mommy knows best! :-)

In Buzz Lightyear's space ship.

The claw- you have been chosen!

Michael with Stinky Pete

Michael wanted Daddy to lift him up so he could touch Mr Spell.

We saw a few shows while waiting for the rain to pass (which it did, typically of Florida). This was a Beauty & the Beast musical, which we really enjoyed. We went to see the Indiana Jones show, but it got canceled half-way through because of near-by lightning. We did get to see a very cool version of The Little Mermaid, which really made you feel like you were underwater. Katie caught a nap during one of the shows and was refueled for more adventure afterward.

Before we left, we HAD to get Mickey Mouse ice cream.

Overpriced, but part of the Disney experience.

Katie needed a little help with hers, and I was kind enough to help.

Michael devoured his!
We hit to road on Sunday evening, and made the 5hr trip to Savannah, where we stayed the night. We searched high and low and finally found our craving- Chick-Fil-A! Then we remembered it was Sunday! We settled (some settled more than others!) for McDonalds. We finished our journey on Monday with 8 1/2 hrs from Savannah to home with an uneventful trip.
Thanks so much to Brandy Scantlin for her expertise in planning our Disney trip. It was a wonderful time filled with fantastic memories!

Disney Characters

We got to see many Disney characters during our 2 days at Disney. I tried to get pictures of them (at least when got over the kids' excitement, and I remembered to take pictures!)
Katie loved meeting the princesses. Here she is with Princess Aurora from Sleeping Beauty.

She puckered up for all the princesses and gave them big smooches on their cheeks.

Belle got a kiss from Katie, too...

...and Katie got a big lipstick-y kiss back from Belle.
I don't know what Michael's deal was, though. He would not go NEAR the princesses. He was kinda shy with all the characters- all except his favorites, Buzz and Woody.

We stopped to see some toy soldiers from Toy Story at Hollywood Studio's Pixar Place.

I forgot that Little Einsteins was now Disney. They got to meet Quincy and June, and Michael finally warmed up a little and gave them high fives.

Disney's "Up"
No, we don't know those people, but we didn't want to wait in line when the kids were just as happy to see them from a few feet away.

Did you know that the next Disney movie (after Toy Story 3, which we are SO excited about!) will be Rapunzel? I think it's coming out in December 2010.

Mickey Mouse
Katie was so happy to see Minnie Mouse at Playhouse Disney, Live on Stage. They had a Minnie Mouse birthday party, and Katie was in Minnie heaven!

The Incredibles

AND... (drum roll)... we capped off our trip with a personal visit with Buzz and Woody. Michael was so exited when he saw the "real" Buzz and Woody, and he wanted to stay forever. As we left, he said, "Mom, that was my most FAVORITE part."

Disney's Magic Kingdom

On Saturday, we spent the day at Magic Kingdom. We were able to get there pretty soon after the park opened at 9, and we stayed until ~9:30pm. We wanted to stay for the fireworks at 10, but I think the kids were well past their point of utter fatigue (especially considering we had one more fun-filled day the next morning).
First visit to Disney World! It was more than they could have imagined!
I ask Michael what his favorite part was, and ever day he gives me a long list of everything that was his favorite.

We rode Dumbo's Flying Circus. I rode with Kate, and didn't realize that the little lever was to move your elephant up and down, so I thought we just had a dud car. Jon laughed at me (as he was soaring up and down).

Of course, we couldn't miss "It's a small world" (even though it now reminds me of Shrek.)

Winnie the Pooh ride. The kids are at such a fun age for this! We also rode Peter Pan's flight, which Michael just LOVED, but it was too dark in there to get any good pictures.

Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin

Waiting in line for the Monsters, Inc Laugh Floor. I think Jon and I enjoyed the corny humor more than the kids did. :-)


We rode the Mad Hatter's Teacups (video in post below).

And we saw Mickey's PhilharMagic show, which was a 3-D show. Michael especially loved this one, as he was just amazed at the images coming right at him. He was bouncing all over the seat as things would "fly" at him. Very cool show!

I think Katie was more excited to wear the glasses than she was for the show.

With the magic of Disney's Fast Pass, we didn't have to wait in too many long lines, even though the park was pretty crowded with spring break.

Katie got tired late in the afternoon and finally gave up to her impending nap. She slept for about an hour while Jon and Michael went on the go-karts and had an encore teacup ride. I rested my weary pregnant-lady feet.

Michael got to "drive" the go-karts, and he LOVED it! What is it with men and driving?!

After the nap, Katie was refreshed enough that we took a tour on the Disney Railroad and ended up at Frontier Land.

Ready for more adventures!

We headed to Tom Sawyer's Island via Tom's raft, and we did some exploring.

Michael especially loved exploring the island.

After dark, we decided to ride Aladdin's Magic Carpets.

I used the magic lever this time to move us up and down. :-)

See, I DID really go.

Cinderella's castle at night is beautiful!

Our hotel was the Ramada Gateway, which was 1.5 miles from Magic Kingdom. I was able to get the hotel (which had 2 king-sized beds and a kitchenette) for $36/night!
The kids were SO tired, but happy-exhausted. We wanted to get an early start the next morning to head to Hollywood Studios. Disney World is one of few valid reasons to enjoy getting up early in the morning!