Monday, April 22, 2013

Epcot- aka the day we met Ariel

my adorable princess!!!

The second day at Disney World also happened to be Mom's birthday! So we headed to Epcot to celebrate. They are currently doing the Flower and Garden Festival, which made everything absolutely beautiful, and there were so many amazing topiaries!
 Lion King!!!
 Snow White...
and the dwarves!

We got there right after rope drop, and headed straight in to Soarin'. We grabbed FPs and then decided to go ahead and ride it once as the standby line was only about 15 minutes. It was so much fun! Thanks to reading ahead, I had a golf ball waiting in my pocket that I "caught" when it flew towards us on the screen- Maddie thought it was so cool! 
quick stop for a picture!

After that we had some time to kill before our Soarin' FPs, so we explored the rest of "the land." First we saw The Circle of Life, which I had read was super boring but hosted by Timon and Pumbaa. Maddie LOVED it, lol.  She wanted to watch it again, but instead we moved onto Living with the Land, which I knew my mom would like and I actually thought it was very interesting too. After that we were back to Soarin' one more time- loved it again! 

On our way to the World Showcase, we stopped by Club Cool, where you can sample Cokes from around the world (kind of a mini version of the World of Coke). Maddie got to try her very first sip of Coke- she tried one from Costa Rica and one from Germany- and it was a highlight of her trip, lol!

Then it was off to tour the world! First stop- Mexico, which still has a corny ride, lots of skulls, giant sombreros and tiny leather purses. 
obligatory sombrero picture

Next up was Norway, and we spent quite a while there. First we rode Maelstrom, which Maddie loved, so we rode Maelstrom again while Dad went back to Future World to grab FPs for Test Track later in the afternoon. 

When he got back it was time to line up at Akershus for a special princess lunch!!! First up was Belle, who was the official greeter. Then we sat down and loaded up our plates from the Norwegian cold buffet. Yeah, not a lot of stuff I liked there, lol. Dad got some fish and Maddie got some brown cheese that she thought was chocolate. Fortunately, after that we ordered some very yummy (not so Norwegian) entrees from the lunch menu. 

As we ate our lunch, Aurora, Snow White, Cinderella and finally...dun dun dun...ARIEL came to our table! Maddie was excited to see all of the princesses, but she was nothing short of giddy when Ariel got there. She sang some of her "aah ah aaaah" song to Ariel, gave lots of hugs and even got a kiss! After Ariel was gone, Mads just kept staring at her signature in her autograph and smiling- definitely one of her favorite moments of our trip and mine too! 

MomMom got a birthday treat and a card signed by all of the princesses!

It was hard to leave Norway after such a fun time, but we had to explore the rest of the "world." We strolled through the countries, stopping in Japan for Pick a Pearl. Maddie got to pick out an oyster and she put the pearl inside her Cinderella necklace. Because it was just a princess kind of day!

Next stop was France- my fave! I was looking forward to France because I'd heard rumors of a Grey Goose citrus slush- um, yum! It lived up to the hype...delicious and refreshing! Before that though, I waited in line for Belle (in her regular blue dress) while Maddie played in a cute little playground.

telling Belle all about Simba, of course!

After France, we picked up the pace through the rest of the world to get back over to Test Track to use our FPs. We did stop in the UK to see and extra special topiary though!

We also stopped for a water play break- it was H-O-T sweaty mess hot at Epcot that day! I was extra glad that Mads had an all cotton princess dress after she got it soaking wet, lol.

Next up was Test Track, which immediately became Maddie's favorite ride yet. She was bummed that we couldn't ride it twice, but the stand-by line was over an hour and she has yet to experience a line over 15 minutes! So we moved along, but Test Track was a lot of fun. We played around in Innoventions for a little while, and used our Disney Visa to access a special meet and greet with Mickey and Pluto! Meeting characters without standing in line is the way to go.

Next we rode Spaceship Earth. Some of the old rides that we rode were a little corny or boring, but I actually still really liked this one. And the little game that you play in your tram when you're coming back down was really cute and funny! I'm glad we did this one. Finally, we ended the day in The Seas, with the Seas with Nemo (just ok in my opinion, although having the cartoon fish in a real tank at the end was pretty cool!) and Turtle Talk with Crush, which I loved. I can't imagine having to think on my feet like that! 

After a long, HOT day, it was time for Mads and I to head back to the hotel. We grabbed some dinner at the food court, Landscape of Flavors, and then went to BED! Mom and Dad stayed at Epcot for a little longer, enjoying the gardens some more before a birthday dinner at Chefs de France. Between Soarin', Test Track and the princess lunch at Akershus, it was a fantastic day!!!

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