June 16, 2009
We started out today a bit later than we had originally planned. Before leaving Columbus, Andy was fighting a wicked cold that he sadly passed on to me. Being the awesome and caring hubby he is (and knowing that we had a light day planned), he let me sleep in until nearly 9am. Heavenly.
But once up, it was time to get ready and go to the Animal Kingdom. This was the first park we were going to that was new to us both. In previous visits to Disney, we'd seen the other 3. We were excited to be going, but also had a pretty good plan in mind on what we wanted to do and what we didn't want to do.
Animal Kingdom has more rides geared at older kids and adults. There were several attractions we were skipping because on 1 or 2 of us could do it. This gave us more time to just explore and we were excited to do that.
Arriving at the park at around 10:30am, we were a bit surprised at how many people were just getting there like us. Of course, the incredible heat of the day could have been a factor in that. It was in the 90s again with a heat index in the 100s. We were soaked before we even hit the turnstiles. YUCK!
Still, that didn't hamper our intended fun, although it did make the kids a little slow going. Thankfully, our condo came complete with a pink camo umbrella stroller as Hannah
announced yesterday that she was done "sharing" the stroller and wanted her own. LOL
We took our time walking through the park heading towards the Kilimanjaro Safari. The kids found a couple of Cast Members to Pin Trade with and we got our picture taken in front of the Tree of Life. Finally, we made it to the incredibly hot and crowded Africa section. The kids and I hung out in the shade while Andy went and got our Fast Passes. Then it was off to the train to Rafiki's Planet Watch to satisfy Micah's desire to ride a train and mine to get out of the crowds.
The train ride was cute, albeit short, and there wasn't a ton to see. But the kids enjoyed it, they got to trade some more pins and we got to hang out in some AC for a little while. They all got to touch a snake (Micah thought it was weird) and they looked a different exhibits on animal care and conservation. There was also a mini-scavenger hunt for fake bugs they did with the help if a couple Cast Members. Honestly, I think we are spoiled by the Columbus Zoo. It's so awesome, that other wildlife exhibits pale in comparison. Still, it was cool to see the Disney version of a petting zoo. The goats even had a mini-playset like my kids see at the park. None of the animals wanted to be petted though since it was so hot. Andy kept making comments about the cow saying it was "being braised" and "a few more hours and we'd all have some roast beef."
Finally, it was time to head to our safari. (How cool that they park your stroller for you on the walk to the trucks.) We boarded our truck, got every one seated (the kids were bummed they had to sit on the inside) and off we went. Our driver really liked to hit the gas and the kids just squealed with delight when they did. All the "oohs" and "ahs" and squeals of delight made the heat and crowds worth it. Jason really got into the story and was happy we "saved" the baby elephant at the end from the poachers. Very, very fun.
It was lunch time now so we headed across the park to Restaurantasaurus for some food. The food wasn't bad for counter service burgers and fries and I LOVE the Disney offers healthy sides like grapes and carrot for kids and it's extra for fries. Granted we still got the fries, but as the kids weren't eating much with the heat, we were hedging our bets that some comfort food might do the trick. And it did, for the boys. Hannah still didn't eat much, but did snack on her grapes and have a couple of bites of burger.
It was here that I decided to pullout my Blackberry for the first time in 2 days and check the time. I saw Jenny had both called and emailed about Olivia the turtle at home so I gave her a quick call. Olivia is fine and is enjoying raiding the Shaws strawberry bed. Although I have been warned that she now looks a bit vicious with her red stained beak.
We had 2 more things we wanted to do today so we finished up lunch, reapplied the sun screen and headed off to It's Tough to See a Bug. I've heard this can be pretty intense, but my kids seem to be loving stuff like this and with no wait, we went for it. It's another interactive 3-D show. We were shot at, spit at and "attacked" by something that poked us the back. Then, to top if off. Just when you though it was over, they said the humans had to wait and allow the bugs to leave first. Suddenly it felt like thousands of bugs were crawling under you. It's was awesome. So far, the best of the day. Micah sat in my lap so he could see, and although he covered his mouth, he kept saying "I NOT scared!"
Now it was off to Finding Nemo the Musical. This was really, really GOOD! The kids (and adults) were enthralled. Hannah and Jason spent the time waiting watching the little Nemo swim across the stage and pointing him out to their brother. Throughout the show itself, they just sat their in awe. Between each act, Hannah would clap and Micah would tell Andy "Daddy, I like this TV."
All too soon, it was time to head home. We decided to just let the kids relax and have an easy dinner at home then go swimming. About the time we would have headed back to the condo anyway, a storm rolled in and we left the pool for baths and bed.
It was another great day overall and I'm really looking forward to tomorrow when we get
to celebrate our son's 10th birthday at Disney World!