Day 3- Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (Magic Kingdom)
After about 11 hours of sleep... everyone woke up pretty happy (sorry Ryan for the unfortunate pic, but the kids look cute, right?)
Tinkerbell left them more surprises that correlated with that day's activities.... Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (or MNSSHP), which Burke also knew nothing about... basically this whole trip was full of fun surprises!
They found some treats in their very appropriate trick-or-treat buckets (found at Walgreens a few weeks prior!).
Only in Disney do you get ring pops before 8am! :)
We took our time that morning at our hotel's breakfast (and sat through a time share soliciation, yuck! I did mention our stay and any meal at the hotel was free, right? So we pushed through this small unfortunate presentation) and the kids did great in the playroom that they had while we talked. We ate lunch and got in a little nap for sister before it was time to get ready for the Halloween Party!
And boy did we participate. ;)
Ryan was such a sport in going along with the theme I wanted. :) I mean, not many men where there sporting their green tights!
Meet Peter Pan, Tink, and Captain Hook!
The party started at 7pm, but if you have tickets to the special event, you could arrive at 4pm, and even get fast passes until 7! So I was able to snag Peter Pan's Flight again (so fitting, right?!) and one more I can't seem to remember. :)
We then headed to our character meal... at Cinderella's Royal Table!
AHHHMAZING story here.... somehow my Disney app glitched and didn't alert me when it turned time for us to be able to book reservations MONTHS in advance. I literally sat straight up in bed one night and realized it was a day or two past our time to make reservations. I called the next morning, only for the cast member to tell me that there was nothing available and to just continue to call back repeatedly. She told me sometimes people cancel, and you just never know! She and I both knew this was unlikely for this coveted reservation of the castle.... but I listened to her advise and decided to make it a habit to call on my walk to bring Burke to school each morning.... well....
the THIRD day I called, they had an opening for Friday at 5:30.
However, I was half way to school when I got this stellar news, and was not prepared! You have to pay in full upon reserving here... so the sweet cast member stayed on the phone with me the entire time I hauled it back to my house... all the while I was making sure my cheek wouldn't hit the end call button. (I would have died!)
They called our name and we got to hang out with Cindy!
I intended on being Wendy, but upon realizing Burke would be the only "bad guy" in the group, I thought I would side with him. Plus.... I wasn't so excited about wearing a long blue nightgown all night long. :)
And explored the room we were in before we climbed the castle stairs.
Each of the Princess came around and spent as much time as you wanted with them!
My fav- Aurora
And HM's look alike the day before. :)
I will say, I was DYING to dress Hylan Marie in a princess costume, but my sweet friend Misty, allowed us to borrow her family costumes from a year prior when they did the MNSSHP. So it was hard to pass up cute costumes, plus the price tag of FREE. I justified it by letting her wear her Snow White dress the day before and then she had a Cinderella smocked dress for the next day. :) Plus, she made a cute Tinker Bell and Burke was adorable in his Captain Hook attire (hat lasted maybe 10 minutes. :)
The food was so so tasty. They provided a divine appetizer for adults and a separate (kid friendly one- grapes and cheese cubes) for the kids. We basically licked our plates clean at the main course, and Ryan officially got the best dessert- (go for the cheesecake. every. time.)
Plus, the perks of the castle, meeting all the princesses (without ANY line!), the cute added touches (i.e. wishing stars, wand for HM, and sword for B), and delectable food made this five stars. I hope to always get this reservation (that is in quite a few years from now... haha).
After a fabulous dinner.... we headed out into the park to trick or treat and ride some more rides before the Boo To You Parade at 8:15, but not before checking out the "doll-dolls" in the castle giftshop.
We then found a really good spot to watch the parade! Castle in the background, and all!
Then more trick or treating commenced in TomorrowLand.
Honestly, I only intended on visiting Tommorrowland to let Burke ride the Toy Story ride once more (it's one of his favorites!) and go to the dance party (you will see soon), but we hung out here the rest of the night! This trip was ALL about easy, flexible, and going with the flow... and while I did have an itinerary (sorry. I can't help myself), it did not rule our days which made for a super fun time!
While Burke and Ryan rode the "Buzz ride," sister and I hung out for about 10 minutes and took pics. :)
But of course, she spotted a character from a mile away, and as soon as Burke and Ryan appeared.... "BUTH" was up next. :) (You really need to hear her say it.)
He was hilarious. I could have watched him interact with people for hours.
So, if you ask the kids their favorite character... they are bound to say Buzz... I mean "Buth." ;)
The only way HM could be dragged away was to be enticed by another character....
plus their was music...
everything my girl loves. :)
Sister is not afraid of anything!... even the monsters!
We rode the astro orbiter (doing it at night was super cool and HM squealed or said "weeeeee!" the whole time. :) and then ... Burke talked us into the People Mover. Why not?
And I have to say... the "boring people mover" was pretty awesome. lol It's like a glorified train ride. The kids loved it and it was super relaxing and entertaining because you got to see a ton of the park on one little ride.
We then decided to head out and watch the Wishes fireworks show as we exited because everyone was getting droopy and slightly cranky. :)
However, on our way out I saw the Tinkerbell line was only 5 minutes... and well.... HOW can you pass that up when your child is dressed as Tinkerbell??? Really, you can't.
This picture ^^^ cracks me up! I wanted just the "good people" in the picture, but in actuality, it didn't come off how I had planned. #superawkward hahaha
And Burke was done and wanted no part in picture taking at 10pm :)
We made it to the hotel and they were OUT in no time.
Day 4- Hollywood Studios
Saturday I had written in for our "rest day".... well.... Ryan was game with another park day (Auburn's off weekend!), and we had free passes to one of our choice, so we went with Hollywood Studios. I had another character dinner reservation for us at 1900 Park Fare, which was another princess meal, so their morning goodies reflected that.
On our way to Hollywood Studios, I checked the MyDisneyExperience app ... to make some fast pass reservations and just to see if Hollywood and Vine (a restaurant that we didn't get to eat at on our last visit), was available. Sure enough... there was a 1:00 lunch availability! So I did what anyone would do- and booked it! Well.... when I went to cancel the other Park Fare reservation they told me it was too close to time (has to be canceled the day before) and if I indeed wanted to cancel, it would be 10$ a person. I did not know this! So, I assume I would have to cancel that one or the one I had just reserved ... so it would be 40$ either way you look at it. I went with booking the Disney Jr. gang at Hollywood and Vine and dumping the other. Since we had already done a princess meal and would be in the same park as Hollywood and Vine, I woefully canceled the other princess meal. Burke would be appreciative I'm sure. hahaha
We saw lots of characters that morning and in the Disney Jr. Live show, which I could definitely do without, but the kids were totally into it the whole time. lol
Her sweet interaction with the characters was priceless.
Burke saw Pluto while HM waited in her girly line. :)
The Star Wars simulation ride was a favorite. :)
And this giftshop toy had us laughing. lol
And you can't really tell in the video, but this little toy had her shaking because of it's force. lol Plus, the mother at the end of the video rushing to her son in fear of whacking Hylan Marie in the face is priceless.
Next up, lunch at Hollywood and Vine!
Burke's face... ahahaha
Look at sisters pose! I die!
I think they had the most fun with Handy Manny.
I was trying to get them to look at me (and I guess was holding up one finger and waving it in the air) and sister copied, then B copied and the Handy Manny copied- which made for lots of laughter.
After lunch we decided to head back and rest (a.k.a. watch football).
We headed back to the park around 5 with a new outfit (which was planned to match the dinner at Park Fare with Cinderella and her gang! I even made the shirts with my silhouette! #beginnerprojects)
So cute, right?!
Ryan had been telling Burke about the Tower of Terror since he rode (and LOVED) Splash Mountain and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. Ryan said he wanted to know Burke's limits, since everything he was tall enough for had not scared him at all. :)
So Burke was begging to ride "the drop ride" by the time we were on our way back to Hollywood Studios. I couldn't believe it.
So while Burke conquered the Tower of Terror, we played outside with a cast member and bubbles. :)
Ignore the smushed crown... it hardly made it in the suitcase.
But doesn't she look darling?!
I mean... living a dream, dressing my own princess....
We got a rider fast pass for me to ride Tower of Terror with Burke once he got off with Ryan, but Burke was good with one time on that ride. hahaha Limits found. :)
His expression on the camera they have inside the ride was hilarious. He looked ticked off that he was on it, instead of petrified. lol
While waiting on them, I scored a FP to Toy Story Mania! The only other ride in the park we REALLY wanted and had been unable to get. Whoohoo!
It was awesome.
We then decided to go to the Little Mermaid performance, but the show wasn't for 30 more minutes, so we found a cool opportunity to meet Chewbacca!
I was hesitant to hug this scary looking thing... and I promise Hylan Marie went to him with open arms. WHAT?!
(^^ Do you sense my discomfort and sister's enthusiasm?!)
We then decided to head to Fantasmic (Disney light and water show) instead of The Little Mermaid, and I'm so glad we did. It was amazing!
Treats for the crew and we headed out.
We caught the fireworks while exiting. We aren't huge firework people I guess.
Baths for everyone and then it was bed!
DAY 5- our exit
We all slept in and ate a late breakfast at the hotel (by late, I mean 8... you don't actually sleep in with kids-FYI ;) and took in the last bit of vacation before we had to hit the road.
(Why yes, that's a terrible picture... but it's always good to have threatening pictures that will embarrass them at a young age.) It was supposed to capture his Mickey waffle excitement. :)
Festive hotel lobby!
Then we got dressed and ready and jumped on beds... procrastinating the drive ahead...
It was beyond fun. Ryan and I both noticed these two get so much closer by the end of the trip. I pray they always have this closeness rooted deep inside because, lets be real... it doesn't always look like this...
There is screaming and gnashing of teeth fairly often, but for the most part these two love each other so and are super protective of one another (maybe Burke more than Hylan Marie at this point).
Taking the family vacation time was much needed and it made me realize how awesome age four and one really are, and makes me mediate on this...
"You will never have this day with your children again. Tomorrow they'll be a little older than they were today. This day is a GIFT! Breathe and notice. Smell and touch them, study their faces and little feet and PAY ATTENTION. Relish the charms of the present. Enjoy TODAY. It will be over before you know it. ~Jen Hatmaker
God is so good to have blessed us with this special family time.