Epcot * Soarin' to Imagination on out to World Showcase

After we finished our lunch it was time to head on over to The Land. But we had a couple of minutes to waste before our FP return time. I saw the Kidcot Center and took the kiddos over there to work on their first one of the day.

They all seemed to enjoy coloring the ladybug. When they all finished we headed downstairs to ride Soarin’. I let Rob & Evan go on first. The standby wait time said 90 minutes. Holy moly. Glad we had our FPs. I told Rob we’d be over waiting at the exit. So Alec, Brookie, and I went over and found some seats.

All the FP machines were now empty and a bunch of kids were running circles around them. Of course, Alec & Brookie wanted to join in, and I let them. Big mistake. There were so many kids running hysterically around that I just knew that one of them was either going to collide with my kids or slip and fall. I kept trying to get Alec and Brookie back to sit but they wanted nothing to do with sitting and waiting. They had some pent-up energy. So, I sat on the edge of my seat with my heart in my throat anticipating disaster.

There was no disaster. Everything was fine. I was just an overly paranoid mom. I think it took about 20 minutes or more for Rob and Evan to finally exit Soarin’ and Alec and I jumped up and went. I couldn’t believe how long that cue was! And the stinkin’ 90 minute wait. And all the tired annoyed looks that the standby people give you as you are breezing right by them. I made no eye contact. I am most above those standby people.

We finally get to the point where we were at a standstill. A CM calls out to ask if there are any parties of 2. And I raise my hand and go to sneak under the rope when another couple behind us goes right past us. Anyone that was standing next to me could tell I was totally ticked. They shook their heads in sympathy for me.

But it was only a couple more minutes before they started to line us up for the next riders. At this point, I was totally glad that that stupid couple who cut us off went before us as we had the best seats ever - front row smack dab in the middle! Score! I hope that couple had end seats with total feet view. But I’m not bitter.

I got Alec all strapped in and I left my Crocs flops on the floor ... thought again ... then quickly hopped up and stowed them in the pocket by my feet. I don't know why I did that. Maybe I was afraid of the Crocs flops robber.

Then up we went. And there was California right before our eyes. At this point, I started thinking of my grandmother in California. While I had last seen her out here in 2001, my last trip out to California was in 1993, the year before I met Rob. The scenes of California were beautiful. When I started seeing the scenes from Southern California I could feel my eyes welling up. It was absolutely breathtaking. I decided right then and there that I have to do what I could to make a trip out there possible. Not only to see my grandmother and family but to experience a true Southern California vacation. Soarin’ had to be the best attraction for me the whole trip based on the feelings alone.

Alec had a smile on his face the whole time. He really enjoyed “flying”. He asked about Disneyland. I told him we would be going there someday, promise.

After meeting up with Rob, Evan and Brookie, we left The Land and headed over to Honey I Shrunk the Audience.

And it was great timing on our part because we walked right into the preshow and then had great seats for the rest of the show. The kids kinda liked it. This is the time that I debated going to get the kids pictures taken in the Imagination pavillion. If you recall, we wanted to get the kids pictures taken and put into a poster that made it look as though they were flying around Cinderella’s Castle. We decided against it. We had a 6:30 pm ADR for Garden Grill so we knew we’d be back around here later. I’m sure you know where that idea is heading ...

We were ready to start around World Showcase. But Rob didn’t get his chance yet to ride Test Track with the boys. I still had the Child Swap pass from Saturday available and handed it over to him. I told him that I would take Brookie and head over to Norway and get some FPs for Maelstrom and they could meet us over there. We said our “See Ya’s,” and we parted ways ... only I forgot to give him the PhotoPass card. Darn it!

I took my time walking Brookie to Norway. I enjoyed looking out over the lagoon across the World Showcase. It was a picture perfect opportunity. Ah ... Italy. I married an Italian. So, let’s get a picture of Italy.


Panning a little bit over ...


And then here is Germany, where my mother was born in Munich (but she is Russian) ...


And slowly Brookie and I walked to Norway to get our Maelstrom fast passes ...

Epcot * Coral Reef * Desserts

And now, let’s get on with the desserts!

The kids, again, got the make-your-own sundaes which they still loved! I think kids just love making their own desserts! Yummo!


Rob ordered the Bailey’s and Jack Daniel’s mousse. Since I was too excited about my dessert, I forgot to take a picture of his.

I had noted on our reservation that it was our 11th anniversary and this is the only thing they did for us ... I ordered the Chocolate Wave. I accidentally broke the chocolate "Best Wishes" before I took the picture.


It was scrumptious! I loved this dessert. It was so worth the crappy mahi-mahi.

When our server came around to collect, he suggested that we use one of the boys TS credits for Brookie. We were a bit shocked and asked if we could really do that as we had intended on paying out of pocket for her. He said no problem. Since we knew this was an expensive meal place, we opted to use the child TS credit. We knew we would have to figure out our missing child credit somewhere else in our plans but it really made sense to use it here. Our lunch came to $123.02 total for the 5 of us.

All-in-all, I would have to say that this place was so-so. I enjoyed the lobster soup and the dessert, just not the crab claws or mahi-mahi. I don't base a restaurant on the appetizers, so I'll leave that one out. But the entree is another story. It was yuck. However, maybe another dish may have been better. So, if the kids really want to go back to the Coral Reef, I will go back. But only for them. And I would order a steak, maybe ... just not the mahi-mahi.

Epcot * Coral Reef * Entrees

Moving right along to the entrees ...

Evan ordered the mac and cheese. He said he liked it and ate it almost all up. Hey! I just noticed Brookie's face in that picture!


Because we were in a seafood dining establishment, Alec ordered the pizza! Yes, I make no sense here. Just trying to liven up the food porn. He liked it and ate it all up. But that's not saying much because he is not too picky with his pizza. Case and point ... he likes the yucky square slices of school pizza!


Brookie really likes chicken. So we ordered her the mahi-mahi. Does that make sense? We figured it would look like chicken and she could try something new. When I went to take the picture, I caught this ...


Now you are probably thinking. Wow! She must love broccoli. Actually, she did take a bite out of it and then placed it on Rob’s plate. My next picture was this ... mahi-mahi with mashed potatoes.


Rob and I both ordered the mahi-mahi with Israeli couscous.


I’ll have to say that we both were not impressed. It really lacked any flavor. I really love seafood and this definitely was not good in my opinion. I ate just over half of it. That was fine with me. I did have Alec’s lobster soup and my own crab claws. And there still was dessert to order!

Speaking of desserts, let’s browse the menu, shall we?


Epcot * Coral Reef * Appetizers

Since everyone was hungry, we all got full meals this time. But first things first. Gimme some of that yummy bread and butter! Or should I say butter and bread?


We loved this bread and butter. It was nice and crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Plus it tasted very good. That or else we were just very hungry.

Both the boys ordered the lobster soup. I take that back. Evan wanted to try the lobster soup. Alec didn’t want any appetizer, so I told him we would order him the lobster soup. That way yours truly could try it.


This lobster soup was delicious. It was in a tiny cup, and I think I ate almost all of Alec’s. Evan tried it and did not care for it. Rob thought it was good too!

Next up, Brookie got the celery and carrots with ranch dip. And now is your chance to see what carrots, celery, and ranch dip look like Disney style ...


It was quite remarkable, eh?

Rob and I both ordered the crab claws. They were served cold, and we liked them fine. They weren’t spectacular -- just fine. Would we get them again? No. They just were not as good as we were expecting them to be. The lobster soup, now that is what I would get.


Okay ... enough with the appetizers ... bring on the main courses! ... just not in this update ... hee hee.

Epcot * The Living Seas and Coral Reef

This time we skipped Nemo and Friends. We wanted to get to the other stuff. We went in and stood there.


We saw this when we walked in and, since Rob is a certified scuba diver, I had to take a photo. I’ve asked him multiple times if he wanted to do the Dive Quest here at The Seas but he doesn’t want to spend the money. His loss.

We thought about watching Crush, again, but we decided against it. We wanted to check out all the cool fishies and stuff. I loved this section with Bruce. Hey!


I told Alec that I couldn’t see his head squished in there, but he said he liked it that way. So, that’s the way I took the picture.

How many of you have this picture?


I think it’s so cute. I love walking through The Seas. The kids really enjoyed looking at everything too. I kinda like the way this picture came out with the boys shadow heads ...


And here was another one of my picture mistakes with the flash on. So, you can’t even tell that they are standing right beside the huge tank. Oh well ...


After we viewed just about every viewing tank, it was getting close to our lunch time at Coral Reef. We had an 11:30 am ADR. It was just about 11:10 am, so we headed on over to check in.

And after a short wait we were seated in a booth on the first level near the tanks. I was hoping for one of those booths so I was especially pleased. Now it was time for family pictures. I took this of Rob, Brookie, Evan, and Alec. I thought it came out fine ... well, except for Alec!


... and then it was Rob’s turn to take a picture of me with the kids. Isn’t this the worst picture of me? I should not have even posted it but the kids looking so silly, I just had to ... At least Alec looks the best in this one.


It was time for our meal and that will be in the next update! Oh yes, another very very very quickie I know. But it's all about grouping things right here. I have to save the next update for the food porn!!!

Port Orleans Riverside to Epcot * Thursday

This was our 2nd day at Epcot, and we were planning on doing anything that we really missed out on plus a few more things. We planned on taking this day slow and steady.

I remember sleeping lightly in the morning. We had no real wakeup call. We planned on sleeping in just a bit and going from there. Then I heard Rob say, “The power is out.” My eyes popped open. I looked around. No a/c, no clock. Yup, power was out. Now, even though it was still early, I was beginning to panic. I had to take a shower and get ready. That included needing the power. Please, please power come on. Sure enough, it came back on. I don’t know how long it was even out, but it really made no difference in our getting ready. Had Rob not even mentioned it, I would never have had to panic. So darn that Rob!

We still were able to get ready and be out the door by 8:30ish. Not a problem in my book. When we arrived, we headed to get our double stroller when I noticed the Photopass CM.

Well, I was gonna give PhotoPass another shot. I figured today’s pictures had to come out better than yesterday’s at MGM. The CM took 3 different poses. The first with Spaceship Earth totally in our background ...


... then another one just a bit closer up ...


... and finally a horizontal picture.


It wasn’t until I ordered the PhotoPass CD and loaded them on my computer that I thought that there was just something off about these pictures. Then I realized that all of us, except Brookie, had our sunglasses on. So, being the Supremo Photo Pizzazzer that I am, I put some sunglasses on Brookie.


And all was well with the World again. The End.

Oops! I guess I should go on. You would probably want more than that for an update, right? Okey dokey.

But first, a classic photo ...


We went and picked up our double stroller and headed straight away to The Land to get some Soarin’ fast passes. No way, no how was I going to miss that attraction again. We all hiked it up the most steep incline that Disney has on this property and went inside. Rob’s job was to get the Soarin’ FPs and mine was to take Alec and Brookie to the restroom. Yes indeedy. It was already time for a potty break. Downstairs, Rob and Evan went, and I went to the restroom near the Garden Grill. I found the biggest stall available at the way end and we all went in. I had Brookie go first, then Alec. Then, I made Alec turn around and face the corner while I went. He’s a good kid. He listens, at least for that. Then we all washed up and went over to the escalator to meet up with Rob and Evan and then we were on our way to The Seas.

But not before stopping at a cart to buy some most healthy chips and water. The kids were hungry. Apparently, their parents didn’t feed them well enough before they left for Epcot. They shared a couple bags of chips and we were finally on our way to The Seas ...