Worms in Dirt

Thursday, March 4th

We all had a rough night (including Elise in our bed with what we can only presume were nightmares), so we didn’t set an alarm. Not that we had needed one most days anyway, but we were hoping to sleep until at least 7. That was about as late as we got.
The high was only going to be 57, and with continued winds of 10-20mph steadily throughout the day. Again. (Seriously, we’re thinking at this point, we can’t catch a break with the weather! This trip we’re 25 degrees BELOW average. Still, we’ll take this over the heat any day!) We knew it was finally time to venture off property (duh duh duh (I know only, like, one of you will understand this sentiment!) because we HAD to get long-sleeve shirts for the girls, and hopefully some tights. While it was disappointing enough that they hadn’t been able to wear any of the shorts and skirts I had brought (bought for the trip), I had had enough of jeans and the same jackets in every. single. picture. At least during the warmest part of the day, perhaps layers would work instead. πŸ™‚
Of course, I forgot that it was allegedly spring in Florida. The lady at the store thought it was funny that I was looking for long sleeves and tights at this time of year. Oh yes, I forgot that you only need coats one week out of the year many years. Thankfully our girls are still such peanuts (relatively speaking) and the 9-12 month basic Carters onesies (pack of 5 for $9) were plenty large even without anything to extend them, and we were at least partially in business. We still made it to Animal Kingdom by 9:05, too, which was pretty awesome.
Because no time of day is too early for some of the treats at WDW (as you’ve seen), our first stop was the Jalapeno-Cheddar Pretzel stand. Then we went through Pangani Forest Exploration Trail with the girls, who were too crabby to so much as try and participate.
We calmed them down by riding the choo choo (to Rafiki’s Planet Watch). They were thrilled to run around once we got there, and we were thrilled to (ultimately) be in a heated building.
We said hello to Jiminy Cricket (love him… and so does Avery!) and Rafiki, and then it was time to hit the Affection Section (petting zoo). In a reversal of roles, Avery was confident and thrilled with the animals, and Elise was a bit more apprehensive. I should say a reversal of roles on this trip (with regards to apprehension)… I suppose it’s always been true that Avery was more the animal lover.
After we made it back to Africa, we grabbed some lunch for the girls (we were holding out for something better) and started out to the car, saying goodbye to Animal Kingdom for some yet-to-be-determined length of time. (Still yet to be determined, even today! Boo!) Next stop for the day was Epcot. We put the girls down for a nap and strolled around. We grabbed fish & chips in the UK, and went back to one of my favorite spots – especially when it’s crowded. If you don’t know it already, there’s this great little garden and hedge maze in the back of the UK pavilion. At times, a super fun Beatles cover band called British Invasion plays, and it’s a blast. But when they’re aren’t there, it is one of the most relaxing places to sit and enjoy the day. Even the cold day. Especially with Harry Ramsden fish & chips.
Avery was awake (but content), Elise was sleeping… so we decided to walk around a bit more. It seemed the perfect time to try out the Kim Possible World Showcase Adventure attraction that had been introduced only a year or so earlier. While it probably would have been a bit cooler for the 12-year-old set, it was a fun diversion and something new. And hey, we saved the world from Senor Senor, Sr and his procrastinator ray. Hmm… maybe a good thing I never watched Kim Possible? πŸ™‚

When Elise woke up (after just 30 minutes or so), both girls were fairly crabby. We decided to try a change of scenery, so we headed over to the playground for a little while…
… until it was time for the Chase Meet & Greet. Of course, when Avery and Elise were only excited to see Mickey, this is the first time (in YEARS) that he wasn’t one of the “secret” characters there. *sigh* At this point Avery was utterly hysterical, so we knew she just had to sleep for more than zero minutes. Period. Kyle pushed her around for a loooong time, as she was having a meltdown that almost certainly was going to end with vomiting, she was so worked up. Since Elise had “slept” already, she wasn’t having another nap. I decided to take her to another Weevos play set. This one (in future world) was only the smaller portion (intended for children under 5) and parents don’t know how to (or don’t care to) control their children, so it was somewhat frustrating as my almost-2-year-old daughter was nearly trampled by 7 and 8 year olds running amuk, but whatever. She was content for about 20 minutes (at which point I was less than content with other families!), and then Kyle and I switched. He took her to the butterfly house while I sat with Avery, who had finally fallen asleep. After she had been sleeping soundly for about 15 or 20 minutes, we felt like we could walk around again and let Elise play elsewhere.
We were wrong. As soon as we tried to move Avery, she was awake. I hurried to a quieter area to try to get her back to sleep, but with no luck. Well, we thought, here’s hoping a catnap gets us through the evening!
Since we had two awake children who were beginning to wreak havoc on the Mouse Gears store πŸ™‚ –
– we headed over to Nemo and played in the Seas pavilion for nearly an hour. The girls (still) love fishies… I just HAVE to get them to the aquarium! We saw Mignent again and played another 20 minutes in the Imagination Pavilion, and just truly enjoyed one another’s company. This is, among other reasons, why we can do Disney all the time. Some of our favorite memories are in these “down” times there. Priceless.
Just before dinner, we decided to ride Living with the Land again. The girls really enjoy it (as do Kyle and I), and it was our last day in Epcot. Finally it was time to check in for dinner at Garden Grill, just upstairs. Let me just say, this is one of our new favorite restaurants. The character interaction was kind of middle-of-the-road — not as great as Chef Mickey’s is (consistently), but good. And super fun characters, since it’s one of the only places to dine with Chip & Dale now that they’ve left CM… and who doesn’t love Mickey & Pluto?
But beyond all that, the food was fantastic, the scenery fun (in one of my favorite pavilions – what can I say, I’m a nerd), and the girls even got their own meal – served family style just like ours, but kid-friendly favorites like Mickey mac & cheese and chicken nuggets. And worms in dirt, for dessert! So cute.

As we were leaving the restaurant, Avery made sure to say “Bye bye” and “See ya” to every person we passed. Hopefully nobody minded πŸ˜‰ Finally we were done, after a somewhat long but ultimately enjoyable afternoon. We picked up a few pins, our free photopass picture from the meet & greet, and headed back to Bay Lake Tower.
We played in the room a little while while I began packing a few things, and around 7:40 settled in for our bedtime routine. The next day would be the last park day (as our Annual Passes expired), and – unbeknownst to us – would be one of the longest days/nights we’ve had in a long time. For the night though, it was time to sleep… and sleep we did. Well, or some of us did. I spent the night mostly awake on the loveseat next to Elise as she talked through her vivid, crazy dreams all night, but whatever. Three-fourths of us slept πŸ™‚