A trip to Disney would not be complete without a rainy day. For Matt and I it seems the bad weather day always corresponds with Animal Kingdom day. On our honeymoon it rained the day we were there, last year it was cold and windy, this year…rain again! Despite the weather, we managed to see and do everything that we wanted that day, other than the parade which got cancelled.
This is how we looked as we entered the park. Underneath the plastic wrapped stroller is Eli and Brady (by the way, you can request free rain covers when you rent through Magic Strollers) and I’m covered in my Dollar-Store poncho that didn’t fit my big head.
First on our list was to walk straight back through the park to Asia and get a fast pass for the Jungle Safari. When we got there, there was absolutely no line, so we took advantage and walked on. I was truly worried about my car-sick girl on this one. Allie did great though and we had some very close encounters with some amazing animals. And yes, unlike many Disney attractions, the animals on this one are all real!
Don’t look too fast at this next one, you might miss the baby elephant walking in front of his momma.
After the safari we decided to squeeze in the Festival of the Lion King show before our lunch reservation. Last year we saw the Nemo show at Animal Kingdom and didn’t get a chance to see the Lion King one. They both are amazing! The best part of this spectacle was that the big kids were chosen to be in the animal parade! I was so impressed that they weren’t scared to go with the performers who were a little intimidating. They marched all the way around the area, quite far from where we were sitting!
Outside of the show there are several character meet and greet areas. We got to once again meet Minnie and Mickey, but this time they were in their safari gear…adorable:)
We started a tradition last year, and for the sake of my mom who has a thing for their lettuce-cups, we had to once again go to lunch at Yak and Yeti’s. What a name, huh? Although they messed up our reservation this year and last year, we still love this place because they food is different and good. Plus, it is just hilarious to hear Allie say Yak and Yeti over and over again!
Cara loved the won ton soup!
Can you just hear her saying, “Yeti!”
One area we didn’t get to see last year was Dinoland. This is a really cute section of Animal Kingdom that is great for toddlers. The rollercoaster was closed, but the kids had fun on the Triceratops Spin, once again meeting Pluto, and playing in the Boneyard playground.
It was early afternoon and Allie decided she needed a snooze.
Matt and I took a break from the group for a few minutes and went on Dinosaur which is a really cool attraction (definitely not for little ones though). By the time we walked out of the ride, it was starting to rain. We caught up with everyone back in Dinoland and took cover at Restaurantosaurus. They have a really nice covered patio area that is quiet and secluded. We sat out there for quite a long time and just hoped that the rain would pass. Eli was fast asleep, we had a snack, some coffee, and just relaxed. Unexpected moments like this are part of my favorite memories of the week. Every 20 minutes we got to see Goofy and Pluto walk by for a 3 minute break from their meet and greet. They carried umbrellas and stayed in character until they got behind the restaurant out of sight. The kids thought it was so funny to see them with umbrellas!
The rain let up just a bit after about an hour or so. The parade had been cancelled and we decided to head back to the resort. On our way out we stopped at one of my favorite shops and I got Eli his souvenir for the trip….a Peter Pan play set. He was so sweet and thankful!
While we were shopping, both Brady and Cara fell asleep. All 4 kids had dozed off on this our 4th day of vacation, I think they were starting to feel the way the rest of us were!
Our day at Animal Kingdom was over. It was a great day, but it represented much more than a day of rides and memories at Disney. That day was January 21st, 2011. It had been exactly two years since Brady’s cancer diagnosis. On our bus ride home, as Brady slept, I whispered to Matt, “Two years ago we knew he had cancer and were waiting for them to take him into surgery.” Nothing else had to be said as we exchanged looks of sadness, but then thankfulness. Being at Disney World for the anniversary made it much easier to forget about the pain of that day. Seeing sweet Brady living his life without the worry of being sick was so priceless.
We love you Brady Andrew. We have held each day of the last two years so much closer to our hearts than we ever did before. May you always know the true miracle that you are:)