Thursday, April 26, 2018

Disney World Vacation Day 4 - Magic Kingdom

Tuesday was our third day in the parks and it was our favorite day by far – Magic Kingdom!  They opened at 9 AM that day, but since we stayed on the property we had access to the park at 8 AM.  The day started much the same as the others with us waking around 6 AM, leaving for the bus stop around 7 AM, eating Larabars/granola bars/fruit pouches while we were standing in line for security, and then we were ready to go right when they opened at 8 AM. 

As you walk into MK, you walk down Main Street U.S.A. toward the castle, so we went ahead and stopped to have the photographer take our picture in that famous spot before it got too crowded!  Of all the things we did that day, I knew we had to get that picture!  And I wanted to do it early before the sun was too strong because our kids will NOT open their eyes if the sun is out. 

And I also have to go ahead and mention, that for some reason on this trip Olivia decided to adopt this terrible fake smile, and the majority of her pictures remind me of this:


Again, we had three fast passes for the day and the first didn’t start until 11:30 AM so we had 3.5 hours to run around and DO ALL THE THINGS that we didn’t have fast passes for before the lines got too long.  Right after we finished having our picture taken, we headed straight to The Haunted Mansion.  There was basically no wait – we just had to weave through the empty lines and by the time we got to the front it was already time to load into the elevator.  The Haunted Mansion is spooky old-fashioned scary, not gory outrageous scary like some of the “scary” things that kids love today, so we knew that it was age appropriate for Jacob and Olivia. 

Jacob isn’t afraid of anything like that so I knew he would be fine, but Olivia has always been a little timid of certain things and she HATES loud noises/thunder/fireworks so I was a little worried about how she would do but she LOVED it.  Both of them did!  And sidenote, The Haunted Mansion is one of the main things that I have vivid memories of from my seventh grade trip.  I remember bits and pieces of that trip here and there, but The Haunted Mansion has always been one of the parts that sticks out in my mind the most.  It was neat to see how accurate my memory was. 

Once that ride was over, we headed for Pirates of the Caribbean as we didn’t have a fast pass for that one either and it’s really popular.  Again, we didn’t have to wait at all –just the amount of time it took to walk through the whole thing and get to the front of the line where you load – and the kids really enjoyed that one, too.  I wasn’t a huge fan of those movies, so I thought that ride was just okay.  I mean, all of the rides at Disney are good, but this one just wasn’t one of my favorites.

B really wanted to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, so we headed there next and the kids and I waited while he waited in line for that.  We offered to let Jacob go on that one, but he decided he didn’t want to.  I knew it was too extreme for Olivia so the three of us waited while he rode.  By then the lines were already starting to get a little longer, so the wait was probably around 15 minutes.  Not terrible!  And I used the opportunity to go ahead and slather the kids in sunscreen while we waited because the sun was starting to get stronger.

Since the kids had to wait for B to ride a big boy ride, we decided to go in search of something kid-friendly next.  The Magic Carpets of Aladdin were nearby so we headed there.  The wait was less than five minutes so we were on and off pretty quickly.  Everyone loved that ride and Olivia was especially giggly because the camel kept “spitting on us” AKA spraying water out of his mouth.  Every single time we would go around it would always get Olivia and me! 

We knew there were loads of kid-friendly rides in the Fantasyland section of Magic Kingdom, so we headed there next with the hope of knocking out a bunch of rides in one little area while keeping our walking to a minimum.  We knew we were going to be in MK all day and we didn’t want the kids to get tired too early.  We did have the stroller so we utilized it to the fullest!

Anyway, Fantasyland was on the opposite side of the park from where we were, so we got to walk through the castle on the way.  Naturally, we had to stop for some pictures!

The wait for The Barnstormer was around 30 minutes, but for some reason at Disney World, the lines seem to move quickly and our kids somehow behave so it went by faster than we thought it would.  Ah, the magic of Disney!

We knew that The Barnstormer would be a test for the kids.  It is a junior roller coaster, so it’s smaller than the others, and we knew that if they ended up being scared of The Barnstormer they wouldn’t like The Seven Dwarf’s Mine Train that we had fast passes for later in the day.  Both kids ended up being on the fence about The Barnstormer once it was over.  Neither of them were terribly afraid, but they didn’t love it either.

Dumbo the Flying Elephant is right next door to The Barnstormer, so we headed there next.  The wait for Dumbo was already a little over 30 minutes, so we busted out some of the Dum Dum lollipops that I kept in my bag the whole time so the kids would have something to enjoy while we waited.  Little did we know, that ride has an indoor playground for the kids so they can play in the air conditioning while you wait for your turn.  BRILLIANT, DISNEY!!!! 

The kids finished their Dum Dums quickly and they were able to play happily for a few minutes until they called our letter, and then it was back in the queue to wait the last couple of minutes for our spots on the ride.   That ride is for all ages, so it was a nice, easy ride for everyone. 

Mad Tea Party was right up the way so we headed there next.  I was on the fence about whether or not I wanted to ride that one because I do NOT like spinning, but I told Brian and Jacob as long as they didn’t spin too violently that I would go on it with them.  Lol.  The wait for that one was around 15ish minutes so I was able to prepare myself mentally for it.  Although watching some of the people spin violently almost made me change my mind.  We ended up taking it pretty easy on the spinning and it was 100% okay, so I was glad that I rode in the end.  Thank you, Brian and Jacob, for behaving.  ;o)  

All of the lines for surrounding rides had gotten pretty darn long by that time, so we made our way to Under the Sea – Journey of The Little Mermaid.  Right as we were walking up, I swear, 50 people got in line right in front of us, and a Disney Cast Member came out and told us it was probably going to be around an hour wait from that point.  We debated leaving, but knew that we could use some down time to just rest, so we ultimately decided to stay.  I was SO glad that we did because that line moved super fast and I think we only ended up waiting about 30 minutes.  Plus, for the majority of the time, you wait in Ariel’s grotto, so it was nice and cool in there and it was nice to get a little break from the sun. 

We really, really lucked out with weather on this trip as the temps maxed out in the mid-seventies every day, and the humidity was miraculously low, but that day at MK there were no clouds so the sun was out in full-force all day.

We all loved the ride.  The Little Mermaid came out when I was seven, so it was the first big Disney princess movie to come out in my lifetime, and it has always been one of my favorites.  I even had the movie poster hanging on my door when I was little.  And I’m sure I’ve seen the movie at least 30 times so I know all of the songs and can quote most of it.  It was just really cool to be there at Disney reliving my childhood.  :o)

By the time we exited the ride, it was almost 11:30 AM, so we headed over to The Seven Dwarf’s Mine Train for our first fast pass of the day.  And THANK GOODNESS for those fast passes, y’all!  The wait was almost two hours at that point, but we only had to wait 10 minutes.  #Winning

I was a bit worried about this ride for the kids as well as myself because a) the kids were barely tall enough to ride it so we knew it could be a little extreme for them, b) it was way more intense than The Barnstormer, c) neither of them had been on a real roller coaster aside from the small ones in Panama City and The Barnstormer, d) neither of them wanted to ride it after they watched it go by a couple of times – LOL, and e) I was worried about riding something that big because of my back/pelvis issues that I have.  I hadn’t ridden a roller coaster since before Jacob was born, and I was so scared that it was going to mess up my back.

We ended up all going on the ride, and y’all, I’m here to tell you that is the SMOOTHEST roller coaster I have ever been on!  It doesn’t jerk, it doesn’t bump, it doesn’t bang.  And it was SO MUCH FUN.  Definitely my favorite ride that we rode in Magic Kingdom.  Both of the kids did great… at the beginning when we were going up a hill I told Olivia to put her arms in the air and scream and she actually did it!  Once we went down that first hill and it started really going, she did whimper a little, but she was a BOSS and handled the rest of the ride like a champ.  Both kids did tell us that they did NOT like it when we got off, though.  Lol.  And we have pictures to prove it.  Y’all, look at their little faces.  That is classic!  Haha.

After that ride, it was time for lunch, so we headed to Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café which was nearby.  Our travel agent had told us that out of all of the parks, Magic Kingdom is the least great for quick service meals, and she was definitely right.  Everything was perfectly good at that restaurant, but it was nothing exciting.  B and I grabbed cheeseburgers and fries, Jacob had chicken fingers (even though he ended up eating half of my burger since that’s what he had really wanted) and he was in heaven because we had let him get a souvenir BB-8 cup, and Olivia grabbed a “pocket peanut and jelly” AKA a Smuckers Uncrustable.  Lol.  I just love that she calls it that.  But she was in heaven because that is probably her favorite food on the planet and they actually had them there at Disney World. 

Of course they did.  Haha.

The place was packed, y’all.  PACKED.  But somehow I managed to luck out and grab one of the best tables in the house because it was right by the windows and it overlooked the lake and the castle.  We ate and then hung around a little longer because we wanted to make sure that the kids got enough rest, and then we took potty breaks and headed back out for more fun!

After lunchtime, the lines for the rides were pretty outrageous so we headed to the Tomorrowland section of MK and did a little walking around and browsing.  I found the #purplewall and grabbed a quick wall mural picture all in the name of Instagram (hehe) and then we let the kids flatten a couple of pennies for souvenirs.

The penny squisher was right near the entrance for The People Mover, so we headed there next as the line for that is always pretty fast moving.  We only had to wait about 15 minutes to get on, and Olivia and I snapped a quick OOTD pic while we waited.  The People Mover is up in the air and it takes you around Tomorrowland so you can see all the sights.  It also takes you inside Space Mountain, but you can’t see anything because it’s pitch black in there.  It was a nice and relaxing ride, though, and it gave us another chance to sit and rest for a bit.

When we hopped off of that, we noticed that the line to meet Buzz Lightyear was pretty short, so we headed that way.  I think we only waited about 15-20 minutes to meet him and the kids were really excited!  Buzz had been stamping everyone else’s autograph books with a Buzz Lightyear stamp, but for some reason when his handler went to hand him the stamp for our kids’ books he asked for a marker so he could sign with his real signature.  Not sure why he did that, but we felt special.  Haha!

Once we were done with that, our fast pass had just opened for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, and again, we were really thankful for the fast passes because the wait was over two hours.  We only had to wait about 10 minutes.  Woo hoo!

That ride was so much fun because it’s interactive.  You get to shoot at targets the whole time so we all loved it.  And I had to take a picture of my score because I got the highest score out of our whole family.  I even beat Brian.  ;o)

We were all in need of a little snack after that, so we headed to a little snack cart just near the castle, and we all grabbed Mickey ice cream bars and sandwiches.  We didn’t even plan it, but the parade was just starting and we were right there for it.  We didn’t have the best view in the house, but sheesh, our timing was just impeccable as it had been on our entire trip!  We all ate our Mickey ice creams and watched as the elaborate Disney floats paraded by, and it was just magical!  It really was! 

While the parade was still going, I checked my Disney app and noticed that the line to see Tinkerbell was only a 10 minute wait as everyone was out watching the parade, so we walked alongside the parade to the Town Square Theater to see if we could get in quickly.  Olivia had been begging to see Tinkerbell all day, but the line had been at least 45 minutes every time I looked, so we were excited about the opportunity to see her without having to wait for so long. 

Just as we were heading inside to see her, Mickey and Minnie were coming down the parade route, and we stopped so we could see them and wave. 

We ended up waiting a little less than 15 minutes to see Tink and we got lots of great photos with her.  Olivia was so excited! 

We stopped inside the Tinkerbell gift shop on the way out because Olivia wanted to get her souvenir from there.  She chose a pair of Tinkerbell jelly shoes with little white pom poms on the ends and, of course, she wanted to wear them immediately.  I was worried about them giving her blisters because they were pretty hard, but hey, it’s DISNEY, and I wasn’t about to deprive her of wearing her beloved new princess shoes in the ultimate princess place!

While in the shop, I saw some gorgeous Tinkerbell Christmas ornaments, so I bought one for Olivia to save for later this year.  We always buy each child a new ornament each year and I always try to find something symbolic for whatever was going on in our lives that year.  So this Christmas she’ll be getting an ornament from our best vacation ever!

Jacob had seen fake snakes in the Pirates of the Caribbean gift shop earlier in the day, and he had begged us to let him get one.  At that point we had only seen such a small section of MK that we told him it would probably be best to wait and see what else they had before making his decision just in case he found something better later.  Well, he was still dead set on the snake – LOL – so we made our way back over there to let him get one.  Olivia and I waited outside so we could take a little sitting break, and Brian and Jacob came out a few minutes later with a fake snake and two pirate hooks, one for Jacob, and one for Olivia.  They also said that they had seen one of Jacob’s friends from school in the gift shop.  Such a small world again!

I knew that I wanted to find an ornament for Jacob for Christmas since I had gotten one for Olivia, so we headed over to Ye Olde Christmas Shop in Liberty Square next.  I want to surprise the kids with their ornaments, so I didn’t want them to know what I was buying, so B and the kids stayed outside while I ran in.  I found a cute little Buzz Lightyear car for Jacob since he had loved Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin so much, so now both of the kids will have a little piece of their first Disney trip to treasure for years to come every time we decorate our tree.  <3

Our dinner reservation was at 5:25 at… wait for it… BE OUR GUEST, y’all!!!!  If there was one thing that I wanted to do on this entire trip, this was it!!!!  When our travel agent asked us if there was anywhere in particular we wanted to eat, I just told her to get us the best places in each park, but that we HAD to eat at Be Our Guest.  Beauty and the Beast came out when I was nine years old, and man oh man, Belle has been my very favorite princess ever since.  I can remember listening to Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson singing Beauty and the Beast over and over as a child and it’s still one of my favorite songs of all-time to this day.  That scene where they dance in the ballroom and Belle is wearing that iconic dress!!  Sigh.  It’s just so dreamy.

Since we had a reservation we only waited about five minutes, and before I knew it, they were whisking us into the building.  Y’all, I teared up when we entered that ballroom.  It looks just like the movie – from the paintings on the ceiling, to the chandeliers, to the huge floor-to-ceiling windows on the far end.  The “windows” even looked out over a nighttime scene and you could see “snow” falling outside.  We were seated right smack in the middle of the ballroom and I could not have been more satisfied just sitting there and taking it all in. 

The cloth napkins were folded into roses and they had, by far, the most sumptuous of selections on the menu at any of the restaurants in which we had eaten so far.  A fancy dinner to accompany the fancy location.  :o)  B and I both selected a cabernet to drink and the Grilled Strip Steak with garlic-herb butter and pommes frites (French fries) to eat.  The kids both selected the Grilled Cheese and Turkey Noodle Soup even though we all knew they were just in it for the grilled cheese.  That soup didn’t even get touched.  Haha.

When dinner was over, our waiter rolled dessert carts out to our table that looked just like the carts that are rolled out to Belle in the movie during the song Be Our Guest.  They had Lemon Meringue Cupcakes, Triple Chocolate Cupcakes, Strawberry Cream Cheese Cupcakes, Lemon-Raspberry Cream Puffs, Chocolate Cream Puffs, and wait for it… The “Grey Stuff.”  Y’ALL!!!!  I am a details kind of girl, and Disney just gets me.  They don’t skimp on anything. 

(And in case you don’t know what I’m talking about, the “grey stuff” is mentioned in the song Be Our Guest in the movie… “Try the grey stuff, it’s delicious!”)

And indeed, it was. 

Olivia and I each selected the Strawberry Cream Cheese Cupcake, B selected The “Grey Stuff” even though the waiter wouldn’t disclose what exactly the “grey stuff” was, and Jacob selected the Triple Chocolate Cupcake.  We shared everything so we could each get a taste, and The “Grey Stuff” was delicious!  Spoiler alert – it was grey frosting.  But you didn’t hear that from me.  ;o)  And the grey frosting was on top of a chocolate shell with cookie crème.  (And I totally just had to look that up on the menu on Disney’s website because we had no clue what was underneath the frosting at the time… we just knew that it was GOOD.) 

And the Triple Chocolate Cupcakes, y’all!  Holy moly, so rich!  Chocolate Sponge Cake, Chocolate Mousse Filling, and Chocolate Ganache.  Yum.

I thought they were going to have to roll me out of there.

Anyway, Be Our Guest is a character dining experience, but the only character there is Beast as it is his castle.  If you go there looking for Belle you will be disappointed.  We were fine with it, though, because we had already met her. 

I only had eyes for Beast anyway.  ;o)

The character dining at Be Our Guest is a little different in that Beast doesn’t come around to the tables like the other characters do at all of the other restaurants. Instead, once you’re done eating, you go visit him in his study.  I actually liked that better because we didn’t have to be interrupted and distracted during dinner, and we also felt less rushed when we met him.

Before heading to see Beast, our waiter had told us to be sure to look around the castle some more, and I’m SO glad that we did.  We headed into the room next to ours and it ended up being “The West Wing” where the enchanted rose was in the movie.  And sure enough, there was the enchanted rose, with magic dust falling off of it the whole time.  These little details, y’all!!!!  It looked so real!  I took a video of it on my Instagram Stories and it’s still in my Instagram highlights if you want to see it for yourself!  Just go follow me here.

We stopped in one more room after that, and then it was to Beast’s study to meet him.  I wanted a picture alone with him – LOL – and then we let the kids jump in for a picture as well. 

On the way out, we had to stop by the infamous stained glass window, and then it was back out into the bright Florida sun to continue our evening.  What a dinner, y’all!

We had a fast pass for Peter Pan’s Flight shortly after dinner, so we headed there next, and the kids both loved that one as well. 

After that, we did a little bit of shopping because I was in search of a souvenir frame to add to our travel gallery wall, and they really didn’t have that much to choose from.  The only two I could find in the entire park were these, so I grabbed the Mickey Mouse one, even though I was a little disappointed as I had wanted one with the castle on it.

By this time it was 7:30 PM and we knew that the fireworks started around 9, so we had enough time to squeeze in one more thing.  We had heard that Monster’s, Inc. Laugh Floor was hilarious, so we headed there next.  We had to wait a good 15 minutes and then we were ushered into the auditorium for the show.  It lasted for about 20 minutes and we all loved it!  It was really funny.  They have comedians doing the voiceovers and it’s total improv because they use people from the audience and come up with jokes on the spot.  It was a good way to spend the last few minutes as we waited for parade time.

Once that was over we headed straight out to get a spot for the fireworks.  It was NUTS, y’all.  I can’t even tell you how many people were out there waiting, but it was thousands upon thousands upon thousands.  We got a great spot centered right in front of the castle, and it was a little further back which was good since Olivia doesn’t like fireworks.  We did have one annoying teenage girl in front of us who had a giant balloon that kept blocking our view, but fortunately when the show started they held the balloon down.

The fireworks show lasted 18 minutes and it was just spectacular, you guys.  Spectacular.  Everything is set to music and they project all of the beloved characters and scenes from movies onto the castle during the show, and at the end, Tinkerbell (a real person) “flies” down (on a super long zipline) from the very tip-top of the castle.  Pure magic.  I feel like I’m overusing that word in all of these posts, but I just can’t think of a better way to describe this whole trip.  I teared up repeatedly during the fireworks show because it was just so special.  To be able to experience all of those wonderful things with the three people with whom I love most was such an amazing gift, and I just felt extra grateful that evening.

Both of the kids loved the show so much, even Olivia, who is normally terrified of fireworks. 

By the time it was over it was nearing 9:30 PM, so we decided to call it a day.  It was slow-moving because so many people were crammed into that area, but the whole town square was lit up like Christmastime and it was beautiful.  On the way out, we did stop for one last photo op even though Olivia was exhausted.  You can see it all over her face.

It was just the best day with my favorite people.  One for the books, for sure!

Now for the day’s summary and schedule:

Hours spent in park – 14 (8 AM – 10 PM)
Rides – 13
Characters met – 3
Disney Photo Pass pictures and videos taken – 45


Arrive 8 AM
Pictures in front of castle (everyone)
The Haunted Mansion (everyone)
Pirates of the Caribbean (everyone)
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (Brian)
The Magic Carpets of Aladdin (everyone)
Pictures in front of castle and walk through it (everyone)
The Barnstormer (everyone)
Dumbo the Flying Elephant (everyone)
Mad Tea Party (everyone)
Under the Sea – Journey of The Little Mermaid (everyone)
Fast Pass – The Seven Dwarf’s Mine Train (everyone)
Lunch – Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café (everyone)
Browsing/picture taking in Tomorrowland (everyone)
The People Mover (everyone)
Met Buzz Lightyear (everyone)
Fast Pass – Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin (everyone)
Snacks while watching the parade (everyone)
Met Tinkerbell (everyone)
Shopping for souvenirs (everyone)
Dinner Reservation – Be Our Guest (everyone)
Met Beast (everyone)
Fast Pass – Peter Pan’s Flight (everyone)
Shopping for souvenirs (everyone)
Monster’s, Inc. Laugh Floor (everyone)
Fireworks show (everyone)
Left park 10 PM

If you’re still here, congratulations!  You have officially made it through my longest post ever.  Seriously.  4,827 words and 83 pictures.  And if you are still here, thank you for indulging me.  This was just the most magical trip and I want to remember every single tiny detail.  This is the reason I love blogging so much! 

In case you missed any of it, I have nearly 100 Instagram Stories saved on my Instagram highlights from our entire Disney trip, so go follow me here to get an inside look at our trip!

The next Disney post will be all about our day in Hollywood Studios, and if you missed any of my other recaps, you can see them below! 

Animal Kingdom

*Linking up with Home of Malones for Thoughts for Thursday.


  1. Your making me want to plan a trip to Disney! What a magical trip! We loved "Be our Guest" Belle is ella's FAVORITE princess!
    Awesome memories were made!

  2. Wow! Amazing trip report. You got some great fireworks pictures! The Mine Train is the best roller coaster ever. The Barnstormer is much more rough even though it is smaller! Very smart to start with the Haunted Mansion. We usually start in Fantasyland!

  3. Wow. Soooo much fun. I love the photo where the kids were scared on the rollercoaster. So funny. I am obsessed with the castle and love all the ornaments and things you got there. Makes me excited for our trip.

  4. What a wonderful day!!!! I am sad you didn't get a castle frame. I got one from a trip in high school and was OBSESSED with it. I wonder if I still have it, or if I finally got rid of it. The Magic Kingdom sounds like pure magic for you all!

  5. This post had me smiling the entire time!! You guys packed so much fun in!!! I am SO sad we didn't do Be Our Guest last time, but you better believe it we will go next time!! I'm so glad you guys had the best day at MK!! I cried on our first trip just seeing the castle! It really is pure magic!

  6. Such sweet memories to look back on! You all did a TON! I loved "following" you to Disney!


    1. We definitely squeezed a ton in! And I'm so glad that you enjoyed it! I always love "following" along on people's trips, too!

  7. You are giving me all the Disney feels right now! The last time I was there, they were building the area where The Little Mermaid and the Beast's castle is. The Little Mermaid is my all time fave, and I have a movie poster too, with lots of Scotch tape on it. Magic Kingdom is always so wonderful. Looks like y'all had the best time!

  8. What a great day that was! I love the castle pics and the fireworks there are some of the best I've ever seen. Haha you just reminded me about the Barnstormer that we were so surprised A loved it and he made us go back on it 4 other times. It's true, I don't think we waiting over 30 minutes in a line expect for the Toy Story ride when we were in Hollywood Studios but it was so worth it. Sierra~Beautifully Candid


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