Monday, April 25, 2011

Day 3 at Epcot... all about SOARIN!

We got to Epcot before the gates opened at 8 and Addie had HUGE amounts of energy on our 4th day of vacation at Disney! She ran sprints for about 10 minutes and then talked daddy into flipping her! Our 2 little men were Buzz Light Year today!
Our first stop was the Test Track and we got to see what it felt like to test out cars in all kinds of extreme conditions!
While we went on Test Track, YaYa and Addie went and took some pictures around all the gorgeous plants. Notice Addie's picture where she insisted on making her shirt into a mini skirt by hiding her shorts...
Some have said Epcot is for adults mostly and not a good park for kids. I disagree 100%, I think there is a full day's activites for kids and was shocked with the amount of live characters everywhere. We must had seen 4 out of teh 5 main Disney princesses signing autographs while we were walking through the countries. The had fun, random activities set up on the sides of the walk ways, like hoola hoops!
After Test Track, most people went to MISSION SPACE, but our family decided to go find the Nemo and Friends Ride and then TURTLE TALK with CRUSH. It was so much fun as Nemo has a very special place in our family's heart with it being the VERY FIRST movie Carter was obsessed over when he was 2! The short amount of time, overall, we had in lines was spent having fun. At this age, Addie is VERY affectionate and gave us HUNDREDS of BIG SMOOCHES while waiting. It made the time fly!!!
Everyone went to the biggest ride at Disney right now - SOARIN', while Addie and I went next door and rode JOURNEY INTO MY IMAGINATION, a super cute ride for younger kids about using your imagination. Afterwards we explored all the IMAGINATION attractions and Addie loved jumping on all the SOUND SQUARES.
After Blake got to come with me real quick and ride SOARIN', the kids got to meet ALL the main Disney Characters. (This will be a separate upcoming post.)
We walked through half the countries of the world to Italy and had reservations at a nice restaurant.
We were lucky to be at EPCOT during the FLOWER AND GARDEN FESTIVAL and there were AMAZING characters ALL AROUND the park made of live bushes and flowers. Our favorites were Beauty and the Beast and Lady and the Tramp.
Carter and I trying to "hold" the big Epcot ball!
Beauty and The Beast.
Aunt Carol and the boys infront of Peter Pan and Captain Hook!
The 5 SEXY SENIORS!
Carter, Ya Ya and I had fun in the LIVE BUTTERFLY ATTRACTION. It was a very well done exhibit filled with butterlies during ALL THE STAGES of their life from catapillar to cocoon to butterfly. Carter was one of the only people all day that had been able to get a butterfly to stay on him, an employee had told him. It was so neat to be able to see a handful of butterflies actually in the live process of breaking out of their cocoons. Carter didn't want to leave!

What fun day, Addie fell asleep around 2 and around 3, we headed to the monorial to get home and relax before a BIG LONG night at Hollywood Studios!
Logistics:
  • We left the hotel at 7:30 for the Early Mickey Hour.
  • Blake and Sean went straight to Soarin' to get Fast Passes for everyone as we went straight back to the TEST TRACK.
  • 1/2 the group went and rode MISSION SPACE, a ride too intense for Addie and Carter. Let's just say that both Blake and I were okay with passing it up as we SO CLEARLY remembered the experience 5 years ago to the day! We noticed that they have added a less intense level since we were there.
  • Blake, the kids and I went to ride Seas With Nemo and Friends, a perfect adorable ride for toddlers and kids who love that movie. This was a special movie for us as it was Carter's VERY FIRST movie he ever watched around 2 years old and we had it memorized the amount of times we had heard it.
  • We then went straight into TURTLE TALK, where Crush the turtle, from Nemo actually talks to the kids in the room. It is facinating the technology that Disney has mastered for a show like this. The kids were able to ask him any random question and he would interact with the kids and answer anything he asked.
  • We met everyone back at SOARIN' to use our FP, which is the #1 ride at all of Disney World right now. Soarin' was my favorite ride so far of the trip. So different than anything I have ever experienced. It is so very relaxing and breathtaking. Carter loved it and unfortunately it was one of the very few great rides that Addie was too short for. Otherwise, there is no doubt in our mind it would have been her favorite ride at her age.
  • While everyone else rode SOARIN', Addie and I went next door and rode JOURNEY INTO MY IMAGINATION, a super cute ride for younger kids about using your imagination. Afterwards we explored all the IMAGINATION attractions and Addie loved jumping on all the SOUND SQUARES.
  • We stood in line to meet all the characters. Many people had told me that EPCOT is the best place to meet and greet all the characters and they are 100% right. It was the only place I saw of the 4 parks, where you stand in 1 air conditioned line including TV's filled with classic cartoons to keep the young ones attention and get to meet MICKEY, MINNIE, GOOFY, PLUTO & DONALD with the professional photographers there in full force to capture all the pictures.
  • We had done all the above by noon, so we were off to walk 1/2 way around all the countries to Italy where we had sit down reservations at Tuto Italia. It is a newer restaurant and the food was pretty good. Although it was nice to sit down in an air conditioned restaurant for an hour and a half to rest, next time, we will check out the next door counter service restaurant that had lines the entire lunch hour and seemed to be very popular or get reservations at THE CORAL REEF, our initial reservation spot that we had to give up due to schedule change of days we were at Epcot.
  • We were lucky to be at EPCOT during the FLOWER AND GARDEN FESTIVAL and there were AMAZING characters ALL AROUND the park made of live bushes and flowers. Our favorites were Beauty and the Beast and Lady and the Tramp.
  • After lunch, we walked the 2nd half of the nations and got to see the real SNOW WHITE, SLEEPING BEAUTY, BELLE and THE BEAST, but we told all of them we were having breakfast with them on Thursday and since it was getting really hot out that afternoon, we kept on trucking! We had fun getting the MAGIC pictures along the way and didn't ask what they were going to be of instead opting to wait until we saw them. Addie fell asleep in the stroller around 2 and slept for an hour.
  • Carter, Ya Ya and I had fun in the LIVE BUTTERFLY ATTRACTION. It was a very well done exhibit filled with butterlies and ALL THE STAGES of their life from catapillar to cocun to butterfly.
  • We slowly made our way to the front and even went through a couple of stores before leaving around 3PM.
Our Favorite Memories Of The Day:
  • While posing with all the characters, Addie bent over and "shook her tail feather" for Donald Duck!
  • Very first formal picture with Mickey Mouse, Addie sticks her finger in her nose!
  • First ride of the morning, riding TEST TRACK with Carter and I thought he was going to be frightened of how fast we were going at the end, however, he wasn't at all!
  • Carter holding the Monarch butterfly and not wanting to leave at all.
  • Marshall and Carter stopping along the side of the walkway to Hula Hoop!
For Next Time:
  • Honey I Shrunk The Audience
  • Beauty and The Beast Show
  • Illuminations night time show
  • Fairy Land!! (Addie will LOVE next time!)
  • The Seas - main large fish tanks
  • Spaceship Earth
  • Try new foods when we are there - Maybe Japanese Stew?
  • Make reservations at Coral Reef to eat dinner or lunch.
  • Ride Maelstrom at Norway

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