Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Day 2

On Day 2, I woke up early. I was just so excited. It was about 5:30, and I made a fresh cup of coffee, and sat enjoying my quiet-time. Rick soon woke up, followed by Josh. There was a Walmart about 1/2 a mile up the rode, and we needed new coffee, so Josh and I set out for the Walmart. How funny to discover that there was a whole Disney section inside of it. This was good to know, because lots of the apparel found in Disney could be found at this Walmart much cheaper.

The kids woke up, and we went for our first breakfast in the Gingerbread house. Delicious! Buffet style, anything you could want for breakfast, and again, all-you-can-eat.

Our plan for day 2 was Sea World. This was Andrew's main wish, and the first thing that he wanted to do. But, because the kids got off to a late start, we decided to save Sea World for the next day so that we could be there when it opened. I was really emotional about this. I just felt that because of it being Andrew's main wish, we should spend as much time there as needed. We made the decision to start with Universal Studio's Islands of Adventure. What we didn't know at the time, that we know now, was that Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure would be two of our favorite parks. These parks for us were better than Disney. I wish that we had spent a full day a piece at these two parks, but we just didn't know. We have decided though, that for our next Fla. vacation, we will invest in visiting these 2 parks.

So my big regret of day 2 was not taking enough pictures.

Straight off the bat we started with excitement. While our kids made all the height requirements at the Disney parks, This wasn't the case for Islands of Adventure. There were a couple of roller coaster's that the boys and Rainia couldn't ride. Kyley didn't want to try it, so I stayed with them, while Rick and the 3 other kids rode this:

They all loved it except for Andrew. He decided that roller coaster's weren't his thing. We had an amazing pass that was the golden ticket. I wore it around my neck, and when we showed it to the ride workers, they back-doored us straight to the ride. Usually it was through some back alley, up an elevator, and right onto the ride. Amazing!

From there, we went to The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman. On Marvel Super Hero Isloand. This ended up being one of our favorite rides of the whole trip. It was a 4-D adventure that was so thrilling. All of us could ride this one, and it was AWESOME. 4-D is like 3-D, in that you wear the glasses, and the visuals jump out at you. The difference between 3 and 4 D is the added senses. When you see the fire, you can feel the heat. If something is wet in the visual, you get wet. On this ride, it was done perfectly. On day 6 I will describe how 4-D can go tragically wrong. (I'll just give you a little hint. It involves the sense of smell.)

We headed over to Toon Lagoon, where we met Betty Boop:

After meeting Betty, we decided to head back over to Super-hero island to try to meet some characters there. The first one was Spiderman, and we went right to the front of the line with our make-a-wish pins. Our Spiderman picture came out blurry, but we did get the professional one. We got 1 picture free of charge, and decided to use our coupon on this one.

I had no idea, but apparently I have a thing for Spiderman. I didn't even realize it until Spiderman said "What are YOU giggling about Mom? Get over here." This is what Rick and the kids picked on me about for the rest of the trip. Yes people, I giggled like a little school girl when I met Spidey. Anyway, I got over my awe enough to shake his hand and pose for the picture. Spiderman then told us to head across the street, and up an alley for a special meet and greet with a bunch of the characters.

We met another Make-A-Wish family there who were also staying at the village, and we met plenty of characters. None of them, though, had the effect on me that Spidey did. I think it had something to do with the costumes. When I could actually see their faces, it wasn't so great. Capt. America did comment on my "rocks" though while we were posing for the pics. My reply? "Yeah, yeah." What is that? Yeah, Yeah? I don't know why I said that, but it made Capt. America laugh.

Mine and Jake's favorite guy:

Next, it was back to toon lagoon, where the kids rode a few rides. We then headed over to Jurassic Park, where we came face to face with so many dinosaurs. We also took the Jurassic Park River Adventure, and flew on some pteradactons.

We then headed over to The Lost Continent, where there was a talking water fountain. Not a drinking fountain, but a large water fountain that talked to the crowd. There was also another large roller coaster, but this time only Brooke and I rode it. There was also a show that we started to watch, which ended up broken, but that wasn't such a bad thing, because Josh was actually crying he was so scared.

The talking water fountain:

The roller coaster "Dueling Dragons"

Poseidon's Fury. This is what made made Joshua cry.

Finally, the last island was Seuss Landing. A magical place. We truly felt as if we had entered a Dr. Seuss book. It was really cool.

Back to the Spiderman ride for one more before heading over to Universal Studios. (We had park hopper tickets to the Universal and Disney Parks, meaning that we could hop from park to park on the same day.)

First up, watching Shrek in 4-D!

Next, the only ride that I remembered from visiting Universal in my childhood, ET. Here, Jake left his beloved CP3O. He did ask to go back to ET a few times, and we had to explain to him that CP3O and ET were now good buddies. Next was Men In Black. This ride was way too hyped for what it actually was. The cool thing about it though was that there were no bags aloud, not because it went upside down or anything. I think they wanted to make sure no photography got in there. Anyway, they had these lockers to put your bags in, and they were fingerprint operated. I totally felt like James Bond opening that thing.

It was late, and we were tired, but we had time for one more ride. The Simpson's in 4-D. This ended up one of our favorite rides of the whole trip! Everyone loved it.

When we got to the park in the morning, we had rented a wheel-chair for Andrew. He didn't use it for the first half of the day, but the boys did. By the end of the day, We were so glad that we had it, because Andrew ended up needing it.

Another thing I'm glad I did was take this picture, of our parking area:

We missed dinner in the Gingerbread house back at the village, so we went to Friendly's.

We were exhausted, but happy and content after such an exciting day.

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