Unfortunately, Friday was my day to feel under the weather. I was trying my hardest to fight an oppressive headache the night before at the Hoe-Down, but suspected when I got into bed that I was losing the battle. Sure enough, I woke up thinking I could make it to "Typhoon Lagoon" and made it about half way there, before I asked John to turn around the vehicle so I could return to bed and safely fight it out with a mattress and ice packs - (vs. hot sun and lounge chairs).
Meanwhile, the Schillings got an early start to their day with a run to Animal Kingdom so they could fly through the "Everest" ride as many times as they could before the water park opened at 10:00. Talk about not taking any time for granted.
Across the expanse of Disney's property, the Whites ventured back to Hollywood Studios for Whitley to visit with the characters from "Disney Junior". "Sophia the First", "Jake from Neverland", and "Doc McStuffins" are all characters/tv shows that she frequently watches on the Disney Channel. Knowing how shy she was with the earlier princess interaction, Travis and Steph were a little concerned she wouldn't be that enthusiastic about meeting these characters (that might even be more scary as they are in head to toe costume).
Steph was posing for some silly pics, letting us all know the joy they were experiencing watching the show while seated on the floor!
Then came the character dining lunch. It was even more of a hit than they could have anticipated. Prepare for "Precious Overload"...
Given those last hugs with "Jake", Travis and Steph couldn't bear to let her leave without a little souvenir of her experience. That's how Jake - "the stuffed version" - became a part of their family.
Clearly, Whitley was smitten.
The Whites then ventured over to to Magic Kingdom for some "Whitley friendly" rides.
Around 10am, this was the sights the Schilling family and Riley family (except me) got to experience at Typhoon Lagoon.
Don't feel too bad for me. It wasn't an absolutely miserable headache experience as long as I stayed still with ice in bed. Mom and Dad had spent the morning back at Fort Wilderness doing a Segway Tour of the area. I'm wishing they would have got some pictures of the experience, but at least I got a first hand account when Mom returned around noon to work on me in my room. (Maybe she can write this whole trip off as she got work on a client while there?) ;)
It took a while, but she nudged my head back to where it was supposed to be and by the time the family had returned and rested up a bit, I was good-to-go to join them at Hollywood Studios for our dining reservations at the "Sci Fi Diner". This was my favorite dining experience from 2010, so it was a "must do" this time around, even it meant a 4pm reservation to accommodate our whole crew.
We made good use of our wait outside for them to come up with a table that would have us in car seats side by side.
I just love this place. How could you not?!
Nice photobomb, Michele!
Lots of efforts to get some family smiles...
Once our bellies were satiated, we rushed over to "Tower of Terror" for the Fast Passes we had secured there. Based on that smile on my face, I think this one happened to be one of my favorite runs. =)
After that, we cruised over to the "Endor" for "Star Tours".
And, then we hung out a bit - trying to make a decision on how to spend our time before the "Fantasmic" show, and eventually saying good-bye to the Whites who opted to end their very full day a little early. Whitley wasn't happy about that.
Since we had so much time, we opted to stand in line at "Toy Story Mania". It really did take us 55 minutes to get through the line - which was just about perfect timing for us to get over to the "Fantasmic" theater when our Fast Passes told us we needed too.
Michele and I rode together.
My score was on the right. =)
The last time we'd seen "Fantasmic" was in Disneyland in California, so the idea of watching it from a giant amphitheater was a new concept for us. There were a LOT of people congregated in this one space, which was overwhelming, to say the least, but we eventually found a good place to sit, got our restroom and concession visits taken care of - and were good to go to start the show with the opening music that is actually the present ring-tone on my phone. I think I teared up when the lights went off and it began...
These pics just don't do justice to the visual delight of this show...but, you can't help but try to capture it.
I'll conclude this post with an account of the adventure Mom went on while we were at Hollywood Studios. It's something that I WOULD LOVE TO TRY! She and Dad went to "I-Fly" and she went airborne. Through the use of a giant wind turbine, you have the sensation of flying. INCREDIBLE! I'm so proud of Mom for doing this (Dad's shoulder injury prevented him from participating). She loved it, but warned me that the neck position required would probably not be beneficial for my headaches scenario - so flying might be just something I wait for Heaven to experience (and in the meantime, savor every weightless moment I get on "Tower of Terror").
Literally - my mom is "SuperMOM"! =)
DAY EIGHT PRICELESS MEMORIES:
- Having my mom bring me back to "the land of the living" - (Not necessarily an "aaaawwww" moment, but priceless in terms of letting me experience those "aaaawwww" moments!)
- Getting those pics of Whitley giving hugs and kisses to "Jake" the pirate (and then recognizing the uncanny resemblance between Jake and Traig....put a red bandana on that boy and you'd have his doppelganger!) No wonder Jake got a lot of love from Whitley!
- Sitting amongst my family while the opening notes of "Fantasmic" began.
- Watching my Mom literally fly. (Or, at least seeing pictures and hearing all about it).