Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Unfolding A Weekend Excursion

Want to know another reason why I love living in Florida?  Disney World is only two hours away (if you don't count Orlando traffic on a Friday afternoon during rush hour).  We made our second trip to WDW this past weekend since we moved here.  Our main purpose for heading to Orlando was for Jacob's Regional First Lego League competition.  They were competing for a bid to the state level, which they didn't win unfortunately.  Since we had to be there at 7:30 a.m., we decided it would just be easier to spend the night in Orlando on Friday.  Of course, then, we just had to make it a Disney weekend.

My original plan was to leave at 2 p.m.. on Friday, but I found out that Cocoa was due for a booster shot on Saturday.  Fearing the kennel would not let her stay the weekend, I made an appointment for her to have that booster at 2:00 on Friday.  That meant I had to leave our co-op as quickly as possible, but that didn't happen because I needed to talk to one of the teachers before heading home.  Instead of being able to wash the dishes in the sink before I left, I just threw them in the dishwasher and closed the DW door.  I don't recommend doing this.  It took quite a while for the stench to go away with a Scentsy burning after I came home and opened the DW door.  Ew!

Cocoa ate food right before we left for the vet, but I didn't have the wherewithal to pick up her food before she ate.  So, she threw up in the car on the way to the vet.  That was just lovely.  She didn't have a fever, so I just chalked it up to having just eaten and my crazy driving so we wouldn't be late for her appointment.  The vet appointment took 15 minutes, but then I had to go to the post office to mail something to my mom.  Nothing ever gets done quickly in St. Augustine.  The traffic was horrible, and the line was long so I used the machine to print out my own postage and pay for it.  I also had to get gas.  By the time I was on I-95, it was 3:00.  We reached Orlando in time for rush hour.  That was not fun.  Cocoa also threw up two more times in the car.  Of course we knew this was from a Nylabone I had given her.  I bought two bones for her a few weeks ago expecting to hold onto the bacon-flavored one for our trip.  This would be a special treat.  I didn't know the bacon-flavored bone was edible, unlike every other Nylabone she had ever had.  She ate half of it and was car sick the whole way there.  I was sure the kennel would be calling us to get her in the middle of the night because she was sick.  Thankfully, she didn't have any other issues all weekend.

After Cocoa was settled and we checked into our room, we had dinner at the counter service restaurant at our resort.  We stayed at Old Key West.  It is the oldest Vacation Club Villa.  It doesn't have amenities as nice as some of the other deluxe resorts, but it is okay for a weekend in January.  There is a pool, but it was too cold for us (Floridians) to use.  :-)

After dinner, we went to Epcot and purchased Disney passes.  This is something I had wanted to do since before we moved down, so I was thrilled to finally have them in my possession.  Our first ride that night was Mission Space.  The kids all rode the more intense version, and John and I rode the less intense one.  We got into the capsule and had a delay which turned into a second delay.  If you know anything about Mission Space, they put you into make-believe hypersleep for your trip to Mars.  I told John I was putting myself into hypersleep and that he could press the buttons in front of me when it was my turn to press them.  Our next ride was Test Track.  They have refurbished it, so it doesn't have the large room when you enter where you see all of the car parts and crash-test dummy areas.  It is a hallway you follow that shows various elements of car design.  There is an area where you can design a car, which then can be in a commercial you create after the ride is over.  Nate's computer crashed, so he couldn't design a car.  The next morning, the computer crashed on John.

We rode Soarin' which worked just fine, but three kids tried to jump almost the entire line while we played games on the large screens in front of us while we waited to get on the ride.  We caught them and stopped them, making it impossible to jump the line any further.  Some people's kids.  :-(    Our last ride that night was Battleship Power Nap...I mean Spaceship Earth.  I cannot ever remember the name of this ride.  It always comes out Battlefield Earth or Battleship Earth.  John calls it Spaceship Power Nap.  So, we have affectionately named it Battleship Power Nap, or is it Battlefield Power Nap.  I may never get that one right.

The next day Jake and I were up at 5:45.  We stopped at McDonald's for breakfast on the way to UCF.  Jake likes French Toast sticks, and I remembered that McD's had them.  I was a bit surprised when his French toast had ham and cheese between the bread slices.  Really?  That doesn't even sound good.  Jake just picked at the bread.  He hates cheese.  My maple and fruit oatmeal was good though.  I highly recommend it.

We all had fun at the Lego competition, but it was sad when they didn't get a bid.  It all worked out the way it should have though.  The coach found out two weeks ago that she has breast cancer, and she starts chemotherapy on Friday.  Please pray for her.  Her name is Karyn.  Thanks!!

That night we went to the Magic Kingdom.  I was eager to see the new Fantasyland.  I am not impressed yet.  They aren't finished.  Right now, there is a very expensive restaurant, a counter service restaurant, a character greeting spot and a ride with a very long wait time.  I looked at the menu for the restaurant.  We peeked our heads in the counter service restaurant, Gaston's Tavern, and saw Gaston's great big chair, and then decided Ariel's water ride wasn't worth the 40-minute wait at 9 p.m.  Nate wanted to ride Space Mountain, but the wait was too long.  When we went back later, it was shut down for "technical difficulties." (I'd be avoiding this even if it was rideable.) There was definitely a theme running through the weekend.

Sunday was great.  I woke up around 7:30 and went to the gift shop to buy cereal.  We had breakfast in our room and then went to visit Cocoa.  We did this twice a day, so it made it a bit easier for all of us having her in a kennel.  Best Friends Kennel is right on Disney property.  I recommend this kennel if you are looking to board a pet while you visit WDW.  The prices are pretty reasonable, especially if you are staying on property.  They really take care of the animals there, and the facilities are great!  You can pop in any time you want to see your pet.

In the dog park - Cocoa and Jake

Cocoa mid run

Playing with Nate
Hulk at the Lego store

Jake wanted to eat lunch to celebrate his birthday at T-Rex in Downtown Disney.  We had just enough time to get to Hollywood Studios and maybe ride one ride and get Fast Passes for Toy Story Mania.  We got the FPs and then went to lunch.  John and the kids wanted to ride Rock 'n Roller Coaster, but the wait was 40 minutes or 60; I can't remember.  I myself have been advised to avoid the harder, more intense rides at Disney because of issues with my neck, so I have to forego most of the roller coasters from now on.  The other ride we could have gone on was the Tower of Terror, but the wait for that was 30 minutes; either one would have made us late for lunch.  Even though we were early for our reservation, they seated us.  The kids played at the Lego store while we waited for our food.  We ate in the Ice Cave where there were meteor showers every 20-30 minutes.  The walls of the cave turned from blue to red and back to blue.  It is very, very loud in this restaurant, but it is a lot of fun as well.

T-Rex skeleton in the Ice Cave
 After lunch, we headed back to Hollywood Studios to use our Toy Story Mania fast passes.  Totally worth it!!  John and the kids headed to Rock 'n Roller Coaster while I rode the Tower of Terror by myself.  This is my all-time favorite ride.  The wait was only 10 minutes.  So that was a bonus!

John and Paige in the back/Nate and Jake in the front totally enjoying their ride
Jake in a silly hat.  Doesn't everybody have a least one family-member-in-a-silly-hat picture?

Jake, Paige, and I rode this.  We enjoy this every time, especially when they open a new line right when we get there.
Once we finished up at Hollywood Studios, we spent the rest of Sunday at Epcot.  We spent some time in Club Cool.  Why not spend time drinking free Coke from around the world?  We've been there enough to know the two flavors that are worth drinking.  Half of the experience of Club Cool is sticking to the floor because of all of the Coke that gets spilled throughout the day.  ;-)

I forced the family to head to World Showcase.  All I kept hearing was, "Why are we here?  What is there to do here?"  I can't explain it, but I just loving walking around back there.  The theming here is excellent.  There is so much to see and hear and smell.  We ate dinner in Paris and had dessert in Paris, America, and Germany.  

Hand-carved $8,000 elephant.  Nate said it didn't look like it was worth more than $7,000.

A Corner of Paris taken from our outdoor table during dinner.
John and the boys rode Test Track again.  I think this time it worked out for everyone.  Paige and I stayed off and bought jackets at Mouse Gear.  It was downright chilly, and we were not dressed for cold weather.  Once we finished riding and eating and shopping, it was off to pick up Cocoa.  She was so happy to see us and finally get to leave via the front door.  She made it the whole way home without any issues at all.  We arrived safely home around 11:00 and slept until almost 11 the next day.  It was totally worth it!!!!!

I hope you enjoyed my weekend getaway journal.  Thanks for reading.

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