Again, we aimed to grab the early bus so we could be at rope drop when the park opened. Like almost all of the Disney resorts, Shades of Green's buses first stop at Animal Kingdom before heading over to Blizzard Beach. Well, Animal Kingdom was a VERY popular place on this particular morning and we barely squeezed ourselves onto the bus. Luckily, I bumped into some friendly faces. Remember those cute little girls I squeezed up front for the "Frozen" parade???? Well, their Mamas paid back our favor of letting their little darlings see the parade and managed to squeeze us onto a very crowded bus! #kharma
As soon as we got to Blizzard Beach, we grabbed some towels (just like Typhoon Lagoon, you can rent a towel for $2/day or bring your own) and some seats and headed up the chair lift to hit the water slides! Poor Mimi waved bye to us and didn't see us again for a few hours. We were all over the place hitting up all the raft slides and regular slides while there were no lines.
Mini-tip --- Just like the regular parks, the best time to miss long lines at the water parks is first thing in the AM!
Overall, we thought Blizzard Beach's water slides were far superior to Typhoon Lagoon!
Mini-tip --- If you have sensitive feet, wear your water shoes. There was a LOT of climbing again and again and again to get to the top of the water slides.
We forced Georgia to take a mid-morning break for a snack, drink of water and a re-application of sunscreen before heading over to the check out the Ski Patrol Training Camp. G had a blast pretending to cross giant icebergs! Again, the Disney "theme" of being at a ski resort that is melting is amazing and so well done.
Our little fish was right at home in the water.
And then she spotted "Fahrenheit Drop!" The Disney website advertises this attraction as "drop in on the t-bar, a zip line that ends with a splash in 8.5 foot deep water (for guests 5 feet and under)." Yes, this was a KID attraction! The number of dads being kicked out of line was hysterical! I missed the cut-off by 3 inches and was horrified that my child was going to go on this thing as I saw kid after kid go FLYING off the zip line. I think my mother had a mild heart attack while Georgia was in line.
Minutes later, I was PUSHING my daughter off a cliff...
Look at that determination!
STILL GOING (when lots of much bigger kids had fallen off!)...
ALMOST to the end...
Approaching the end, where the t-bar hits an end point and the children go flying off!
Just when I breathed a sigh of relief, she wanted to do it AGAIN!!!
We had to drag Georgia back to the chairs for lunch. Again, we packed her a sandwich since we weren't sure what would be safe for her to eat at the park. We wanted to head back to the resort for naptime before dinner reservations, so we finished off our day at the water park by spending some time in the wave pool (Melt Away Bay) and then taking a lap in the lazy river.
When comparing the water parks, the wave pools were very different. Blizzard Beach had a much smaller pool filled with constant small waves while Typhoon Lagoon had a gigantic wave pool with one massive wave every few minutes. We couldn't decide which one we liked better since each had its perks.
Mini-tip --- Watch your toes in the wave pools. Within a matter of minutes, Georgia was bleeding from scraping her foot, Nick jammed his foot, etc.
Again, if you are headed to Disney in the summer months, don't ignore these parks! It's an awesome way to spend a day (or just a few hours).
We grabbed the bus back to Shades of Green and relaxed for a few hours before beginning our next adventure... heading to dinner at the Hoop Dee Doo Revue at Fort Wilderness. I hadn't been to the show in years and was excited to introduce Nick and Georgia to the fun. Some googling told us the fastest way to get there would be to ride the monorail to Magic Kingdom and then take the boat to Ft. Wilderness. Luckily for us the afternoon thunderstorms cleared just as we headed out for the night.
**A note about weather --- Yes, it rained every single day that we were in Florida. We expected it. We were told it would happen. We brought ponchos and umbrellas with us everywhere. The good news is that the weather was BEAUTIFUL in the morning and we always got a lot done before the afternoon clouds would roll in and force us to take a break!
|Nick and I had to be separated due to our unfortunate matching color palate|
Georgia was treated like a queen during the dinner show. Chef TJ showed up and immediately told us that her food allergies would not be a problem. She could eat the fried chicken and ribs, but he would bring her a separate salad, bread, corn, potatoes and dessert! Chef TJ is one of those "celeb Disney chefs" that food allergy parents talk about online and he didn't disappoint...
|The girl loves some lettuce and red onion!|
When I mentioned that Georgia LOVES her carbs and wouldn't be able to eat the amazing cornbread on the table, Chef TJ ran back to toast her a roll, which she inhaled... with a side of dairy-free butter splashed all over her face.
When we booked the show, I wasn't sure if Georgia would enjoy the humor/singing/dancing that accompanied dinner. That wasn't a problem. She was all in and loved watching the shenanigans happening all around her!
I thought the food at Hoop Dee Doo was fabulous and it was the only night that I stuffed myself silly! And then the giant strawberry shortcake dessert was brought to the table. Chef TJ didn't forget Georgia either and sent her out a special Mickey sundae...
Overall, we loved the show and the food and it was a perfect break from eating in the parks for the night. Plus, it's all you can eat and all you can drink (I may have indulged in a few glasses of sangria!).
Instead of heading right back on the boat, we decided to take a few minutes to explore Ft. Wilderness. We found lots of horses, including a giant (and open) stable where we walked around and visited all the Disney ponies! We decided to jump aboard one of the Disney shuttles to check out the main resort hotel, the Fort Wilderness Lodge, which was breathtakingly beautiful. I truly felt like I walked into the Pacific Northwest as soon as I entered into the massive lobby.
|Mimi and G grabbing a rocking chair by the fire|
After visiting Ft. Wilderness, we took a bus back to the Magic Kingdom and then jumped on the monorail back to the Polynesian. As we started our walk back to Shades of Green, the fireworks from Magic Kingdom's nightly show started and we had a great view!
Mini-tip --- If you don't want to go to a park (or don't have a ticket to get back into the park), head to one of the monorail resorts to watch the nightly fireworks and boat parade! I highly recommend the Polynesian since there is a beautiful beach, dole whips, drinks in pineapples, and a perfect view of the fireworks.