For the second part of our day we headed over to Epcot again because we wanted to catch the Taiko Drummers in Japan and the Chinese Acrobats in China and this was the one chance we had with them performing back to back.
These performers were awesome. We have videos of both that I need edit together and will make a separate post. After the acrobats we stopped to see if the Nine Dragons restaurant had any open tables because we ate there 12 years ago and I remembered it being yummy. It was fantastic this time too! The girl who waited on us has been in America for 3 years now and said she really enjoys being here. We had leftovers and I was excited that we had a fridge in our room because I could have that for breakfast the next day.
Nadia had a blast playing a game with Mike and her straw while we waited for our food. It was really cute how much fun she had.
Then she drew us a map to get back to our hotel room. It included the monorail and the elevators.
We arrived back in our room in time to get ready for bed and watch the fireworks. As I feel asleep I was gearing up for our attack plan for Hollywood Studios Thursday morning – I was determined to get us on Toy Story Mania without waiting for 90 minutes or more.
Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Green Army Men and a bucket full of Little Green Men. Need I say more about this day?
Nadia could have been totally content with our Disney experience after this day. She met the Toy Story gang and we bought her a bucket full of Little Green Men. Look at this happy girl right before her nap.
We started our day at Hollywood Studios (formally MGM) and headed back to the Toy Story area “thinking” we could ride the Toy Story Midway Mania and take some photos. Ummmm, we didn’t have a clue. I had read that it was the most popular ride in all 4 parks right now, but that clearly did not compute with me. It wasn’t working when we arrived at 10 am and when I looked over at the Fast Pass Machine, the next available return time was 5:30 pm. So we decided to get in the line to meet Buzz Lightyear and Woody instead. We could still see the Fast Pass sign and wait time through the windows while waiting to see Buzz and Woody, and not long after being in that line the fast passes were gone. By the time we were done with Buzz and Woody the wait time was for the ride was at 90 minutes because it had just opened. So no Toy Story ride for us.
They had the cutest waiting/staging area to keep you busy while in the long line to see Buzz and Woody.
I love how serious she seems in the photo below. Maybe she is wondering why Buzz is holding my hand.
When we came out of the photo area there were two Green Army Men out in the middle of all the people. Nadia immediately wanted to see and talk to them and Mike got some great photos. What amazed me was that people didn’t really seem to notice them – either because they were in a rush or they just didn’t think about them being in the movies. They were one of my favorite parts of the first movie. The second soldier Nadia interacted with seemed to be having so much fun with her that it was adorable.
Nadia was so excited through all of this and I was just enjoying her being so excited that I totally failed in my mom job to get out the autograph book for Buzz and Woody! So we went back to the exit door right by them and I snuck in when another family was coming out and asked if they would please sign her book so we didn’t have to wait in line again. Whew!
The whole area called Pixar Place was so well done that I enjoyed just looking at the decorations.
After a little shopping for Toy Story goodies we headed over to see the “Muppet 3D” show. Mike and I saw it years ago and it’s just really cute. We had shown Nadia some muppet videos on YouTube a while back so at least she was familiar with them before we went in. We came out of there and started walking when Nadia saw “Frosty” in front of the Christmas store and she had to stop and asked Mike to please take some photos. She was on a kick a while back where she wanted to dress up as Frosty all the time so this was extra fun for her.
We were very hungry at that point and were able to walk in to Mama Melrose and it was fantastic!!! Wonderful Italian food tucked away in the back corner of Hollywood studios. Their Caesar salad was amazing! On our way out of the park we got some more pressed pennies and saw the “Beauty and the Beast” show. It was wonderful and the costumes were fantastic! Mike had so many good shots that I uploaded them as their own album.
And I made one little video.
After all of that we headed back to the hotel for a nap. I will continue this day in the next post.
Tuesday we woke up early to catch the bus to the Animal Kingdom, quite possibly the hottest and most humid place on the face of the earth that day. We had breakfast reservations for “Donald’s Safari Breakfast”. The food was very good and I enjoyed the Mickey Shaped waffles because they were so cute! Love this group shot of us!
During breakfast Mickey, Goofy and Daisy Duck came by to pose for photos and sign autographs. This place was MANIA!! It was a lot of fun to see the characters dressed up in the safari gear and we had the most fun with Goofy because he played around with the kids more.
After breakfast we headed out to get in line for the safari ride which has a pretty silly story, but the animals are neat. Nadia wore her “fari” hat for the ride.
We headed over to see the “Festival of the Lion King” show while the others went to ride the coasters. We ended up with really good seats because Nadia was on the end where the actors went in and out and they were saying hi to her and giving her high 5’s, which was really cute! The show itself was very well done and Nadia got a big kick out of it.
After that, Mike saw that the line to see Goofy was short so we headed over there. Nadia loves Goofy and really had fun with him.
Then a man with a guitar and microphone came up and asked Nadia some questions and then made up a song about her and her Silly Bandz. It was adorable!
After that we found some penny press machine for Nadia’s collection and then went to see the 4D show, “It’s Tough Being a Bug.” It was very cute, and the end was really funny for the adults and had quite a few kids screaming (or maybe that was some adult women). At that point we were done with the oppressive heat and humidity so we got on a bus to head back to our room for lunch and a nap. After our nap we met the rest of our group at the Polynesian resort for the “Spirit of Aloha Dinner”. The food was very good, especially the pineapple coconut bread and the chicken. YUM! The dinner and show takes about 2 hours and I went ahead and brought stuff for Nadia to do because I wasn’t sure what she would think. I was right and she didn’t really get interested until the end with a lot of the dancing and the fire dancer.
We headed back to the room for fireworks and Mike got some cool photos.
I asked Nadia what she liked best about the day and she said, “Goofy.”
How did this day start? With the Princess breakfast at Cinderella’s Castle. Using tips from those who have gone before we booked it for before the park opened so we got some great shots on main street in front of the castle with no people. (but the family ones are on the Disney Disc that we haven’t ordered yet – I will do a separate post when we get those). Here is one Mike took.
The first thing you do is have your photo done and meet Cinderella. We went upstairs to have breakfast and were able to meet Snow White (she had a scary voice exactly like Snow White in the movie), Sleeping Beauty (didn’t really attract much attention from the crowd), Ariel (she was cute) and Belle. Belle was SO SWEET with Nadia. She gave her lots of special attention about wearing “her” dress and then they danced together which was so adorable.
Then she wanted to give Nadia a hug and we just thought she was so genuine.I thought this was a great photo Mike captured.
Since we were in the park before it opened I changed Nadia into regular clothes and we went right for the kiddie type rides. Eddie, Kim and the big kids headed for the real roller coasters. Mike and Nadia on Dumbo.
Nadia and I on Prince Charming’s Carousel.
We followed Tour Guide Mike’s website advice and were able to do all the Fantasyland rides plus Mickey’s Toontown roller coaster in just under 2 hours. Here is what we did: Dumbo (I got fast passes for Peter Pan while they waited in line), Winnie the Pooh twice, Mickey’s Philharmagic (totally AWESOME 3D show), Peter Pan, It’s a Small World, Goofy’s Barnstormer. Then we got on the Magic Kingdom train and rode it all the way around to FrontierLand. Here we are singing “Train Is A Comin” during the ride.
At that point it was time for lunch so we decided on a quick service meal at Columbia Harbour House. I got the tuna sandwhich based on reviews I had read and it was wonderful, but Mike doesn’t like tuna so he and Nadia split chicken tenders and fries and they were only so-so. Nadia liked her yogurt best, but by the end said she “needed to brush her teeth”, so she did – with the yogurt.
We headed back to our room for naps and a change of clothes then it was off to Epcot in the evening. Nadia started on her Passport and her mask. At Epcot they have little stations in the World Showcase called “KidCot” stops. Each country has one and the kids get a charm for their mask. The charms represent something about the country – so China’s was a kite and France had an Eifel Tower. If you buy the Disney passport (which looks and feels like a real American passport) you can get a stamp and note written to you in each country. The employee’s are young adults from the actual countries that Disney brings in for a year – they write a message, stamp the passport and put the date and time. It was so cool when it was finished and I set aside the stickers that came with the passport for us to do now that we are home. I didn’t want to chance her covering up the messages. Here we are in Japan.
We ate dinner with Eddie, Kim and the kids at a place called “Chefs de France” and it was AWESOME!!!! Nadia fell in love with the baguettes and asked if she could take some home to our hotel. Our waiter was really nice and he told us that he had been in America for 4 months and was really enjoying it. We saw the Beatles cover band in the UK and Nadia really wanted to ask them to play “Come Together” but they weren’t really set up to take requests. Waiting at the KidCot stop there we were surprised to see Pooh and Tigger there so I got in line for photos.
After all that it was time to go to bed. I asked Nadia what she liked best about the day and she said, “Riding the train and singing ‘Train is a Comin'” with Daddy.