Sunny Weather Sends us to Typhon Lagoon!

OK, so Roxy and I had a long conversation late at night about weather vs. our planned days at WDW. I did not get to sleep immediately but was comforted by both Roxy and Bean’s gentle snoring in the room 😀

The next morning I got up early and when Roxy woke up I said we had to make the change and if we lost our chance at Coral Reef we’d live with it. But Roxy picked up my planning binder and got the Disney Reservations number and gave them a call. Dinner was booked, but she was able to
swing lunch ressies at Coral Reef for Monday.

Did I mention that my wife totally ROCKS!!!

So with that set we let everyone else sleep in a bit more as we’re not expecting crowds to be unmanageable at Typhoon Lagoon in early January. We still have ourselves together and are able to get to TL right after it opened.

It was Roxy, the girls, my mom, Nana, and me of course. Nana decided not to swim as her back was still bugging her, but she had a good time just watching us frolic around out there. My mom skipped crush-n-gusher, but enjoyed the wave pool until a rogue wave got her and then had a good relaxing ride on the lazy river :-]

The bigger pics you will see including the one above were taken with one of those disposable water-proof cameras so the shot’s aren’t so clear. The real bummer was that none of the pics from the big wave pool turned out at all except for a blurry one of Bean underwater coming up in a bit. We had shots of waves bearing down on Kyra and of me holding Gillian above the wave while I was swallowed up by it.

The smaller pics are from the PhotoPass website. Nice that they had some custom borders to add to them.

The girls ran up to the overlook to take it all in and I take a quick shot.

From the overlook we did a quick bathroom break and coated everyone with sunscreen. After that it was off to Crush n Gusher!

At first Roxy and Kyra went on one raft and Bean and I went on the other. But within a ride or two Kyra wanted to go solo, so we switched out 2 or 3 person rides with either Bean and I or Roxy, Bean, and I.

BTW, there was a line of about 20 people at the longest for the 2-person rafts and no wait at all for the 3-person rafts 😀

We probably did it for a bit over an hour before moving on. We grabbed a quick snack and then hit the wave pool. Pumpkin got all the way out there with the body surfers and Bean and I got pretty close to her. We got past the point where the wave crests, which was much easier to deal with than eating the big wave while holding on to her. DW tried it for a while, but was more than happy to turn her back over to me after a few waves ;-]

Here’s the one and only pic from there as mentioned above

Once we had our fill of that we hit the bathrooms, got some ice cream, and then headed towards the mountain and its assorted tube rides n such.

We started with Gang Plank Falls, which I took a couple of shots on

Then we took on Mayday Falls

And then Keelhaul Falls …I didn’t get a shot of that one, but got another pic of the boat on the way up to it

We finished up by taking on the Storm Slides and Humunga Kowabunga …or as everyone seems to refer to it, the wedgie express 😀 😛 😀

The girls would have liked to stay a bit longer, but I had plans for catching Spectro and Wishes that evening since we wouldn’t be doing it on Monday. I knew we would be cutting it close, but I knew we could make it in time!

We headed out of Typhoon Lagoon just before closing. It had been a great day and I was trying to keep a mellow pace. But I wanted us to make it to Spectro, which meant making it back to the resort and showering/changing, getting food, and driving to the TTC to catch the monorail to MK …all within a couple of hours!

We made it back to the resort without issue and the girls jumped in the shower. My parents decided to sit this one out and Roxy and I decided to wait until we got back for showers.

Sooo, the girls, Roxy, Nana and I piled into the van and headed out – planning on making a quick stop at a McDonalds just across the freeway (or so said our GPS). We crossed under the highway and there wasn’t one where the GPS said there was supposed to be one. But we saw one a bit further down on the other side of the street so no worries, right?

Well I’m starting to sweat the time a bit and traffic is not cooperating, but we finally make it to it, get our food ordered, and start eating as I drive towards MK.

We make it to the TTC In decent time and get a pretty good parking spot, and then headed for the gates. By the time we get through I’m getting a bit panicked about time and Nana’s electric wheelchair starts giving out.

We have 15 minutes to go and I grab the handles on the back and start trucking up the ramp with her with the girls and Roxy right behind us. We make it up in time and get on the monorail, and just as the doors are closing….


It was only my second time to the TTC and I didn’t pay attention, soooooo …OFF WE WENT TO EPCOT!

I was exhausted and knew I had pushed us all and then didn’t look up at the entrance sign and BAM! I was in a funk Roxy had seen the sign to EPCOT and had just assumed I knew where I was going. I had said Magic Kingdom, but it was in the middle of all our haste driving there so I understand her not catching it …we were just so hurried.

So I was fuming AND felt like a jerk for making everyone rush and then blowing it.

It is amazing how long the ride to EPCOT and back is when you meant to go somewhere else. We eventually made it back with my wife talking me down and me trying to to let my bad mood rub off on the girls..

We of course had to then go down the EPCOT ramp and up the MK ramp. There was a monorail there which I got myself and Nana to …but the girls had to go to the bathroom and couldn’t wait so we missed it 😐

We took the next one and hustled down the ramp and towards the turnstiles. Bag check, ticket swipe, and I can hear the music playing! We make it through the tunnel and come out just as Mickey is rolling around in front of us!

Now one might consider this a triumph, but I knew this was the only night we’d see the parade so I wanted to get some good pictures. Here’s where my next big goof comes into play.

I had been very good about charging all batteries each night but had neglected to do so the prior evening ….because we were going to use the waterproof cameras today, right?????

Needless to say I pulled out my dSLR and bing! dead battery. The parade is wheeling on by as I struggle with my camera bag. This is the one time that I lost sight of the real deal …of making sure the girls were having a good time. No Daddy of the Year award for me 🙁

Roxy got some help from a kind dad who helped the girls up onto the wall of the tree planter to the right after you go through the archway on the right. I looked up and they were set (I didn’t know at the time that Roxy had to get help from someone else).

So I went back to my camera bag grumbling about the battery. I even played the “grumble at Roxy” card because that was the one purchase she said “no” to before our trip …having an extra battery for the camera.

Grumble grumble grumble – are we all enjoying my pity party? 

I pulled out our video camera, which had been giving us fits lately and not wanting to start up. After 3 tries it finally spun up and was ready to record. I was gathering up my bag and attaching the monopod when Nana waved me up onto the porch of Tony’s Town Square Restaurant.

I caught the parade about half way through an pulled these wee screen grabs from it:

And here is the video itself

We followed the end of the parade up the street and picked a spot on the sidewalk just up from the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor for Wishes. We were at the back of the tape so at least nobody could crowd in behind us.

Roxy braved the line in the ice cream parlor to get the girls some treats while I tried to keep people from standing right in front of my Nana in her wheelchair. The show finally started and I tried the amazing feat of filming with a tired 8yr old on my shoulders.

Here’s a few caps from that

And here is the video itself

Afterwards we took our time, looking through shops and continuing the search for bells to add to Kyra’s bell collection as Gillian continued to to amass snow globes for her collection 😀

I went out and bought each girl a balloon and was happy to realize that they had been too tired to notice how grumpy I had gotten earlier. We eventually made our way out of the park and back home. Roxy and I finally got our showers and we all hit the sack. And yes, we had a talk after everyone went to bed and I promised to not let life’s little oops’es get to me like that again ;-]

Whew! Another long day down with over a week of fun to go! We had MGM or Disney Hollywood Studios, whichever you prefer, set for tomorrow. Would it be fun in the sun or are there more clouds on the horizon?  Click below to see!