We woke up on day two to Jesse telling us about his fantastic turkey leg dream…sigh… He said thinking about it the next day was just as good, if not better, than the actual experience itself. The House of Hearts called us first thing to see how everything was going and asked if we needed anything at all to make our stay more comfortable. We said we were doing just awesome and didn’t need anything. They also told us that there were some Disney character’s here doing a meet and greet with the kiddos. We decided to stop by before leaving for Disney Hollywood Studios. The Disney characters were first rate. Belle was there, as were Mickey and Pluto. The kids got their pictures taken and spent a bit of time with the characters. I was totally infatuated with Belle who was amazingly authentic and charming. It was all quite lovely and special.
We ended up running out of there to catch our bus. We plopped onto the bus and waited…and waited…and waited. I think the bus driver couldn’t get his wheelchair ramp to close or something. Finally, after about an hour I went out and asked what was going on. I was wondering if maybe we should call a cab or something. “Oh”, he said – looking surprised to see me, “I don’t know…I’ll call to see if a replacement bus is coming”…anyways…to make a long story short a replacement bus was called, but I had lost faith in our transportation system at this point (I had spent a long time on hold the day before to reschedule our pickup, which was a bit frustrating). I called a LYFT…a cab service used in Florida to take us to the park. We ended up enjoying our LYFT to the Hollywood Studios so much that we permanently fired the bus after that day. It was only about $20 US to get to the parks…better than sitting on a bus and being late all the time I think.
Anyways, we got to Hollywood Studios just before noon. We still hadn’t eaten breakfast because we had chosen to go see the Disney characters instead. More importantly I hadn’t had my coffee yet. Jesse and I were a bit off that morning….he was barking orders and I was yipping back. We were both hungry, caffeine deprived, and a bit frustrated. Anyways, we walked down the main street at Hollywood Studios and suddenly all the music changed. Oh my God….a bunch of Storm Troopers were walking down the street and it was so exciting! Holy Crap! Darth Vader was with them!!!!! (side note: I find Darth Vader a totally awesome villain….I think that new young, wimpy looking Darth Kylo Ren – who killed Harrison Ford…sob… – just a spoiled villain kid with daddy issues.) Anyways, there was a big announcement in the streets basically saying ‘get to the sides you lazy, damn civilians – Vader is coming through’! We totally stepped to the side and watched. It was so military and impressive. And then….they walked directly in front of us and stopped….OMG!!! AND CAME OVER TO US…OMGGGGG! Darth (we’re on a first name basis now) walked up to the kids and said something like ‘you’d better not be sharing secrets with the resistance’. And they were like all….no way! Then he walked up to Jesse and told him the same thing….Jesse also denied the possibility of such traitorship. (I was going to point out that Jesse would definitely trade a secret with anybody if there was a smoked turkey leg involved, but I kept my mouth shut this one time, which shows that I probably wouldn’t share secrets with the resistance because I have a tremendous amount of inner strength…) Anyways, after that bit of excitement, we were all quite excited! Finally though….hunger and caffeine deprivation set in and Jesse and I started yapping at each other again. I wanted to go across the street and grab a coffee…then it was a thing…then he wanted a giant hot dog for breakfast….then I was all “I don’t want a damn giant hot dog for breakfast”…then we did something that solved neither one of our problems. We went to the Frozen Sing-along show….yeah I know…poor timing. I know what you’re thinking….”Let it Go”, but it was hard. There was a Dark Force getting on my nerves and I was putting up a great deal of resistance. At this point I should mention that I, like so many moms, am a bit of a Super Hero at time – especially on vacations. I make amazing things happen on a daily basis. However, like many superheroes, I require a necessity. Ironman has his suit, Thor has his hammer, Captain America has his shield, Hawkeye has his bow, Wonder Woman has her little bracelet things and whip….and I have my caffeine (wine after 4:00 p.m.) Nobody should be expected to superhero their way through a busy theme park on a scorching hot day after sitting on a bus for over an hour WITHOUT CAFFEINE! Right! (Jesse says this analogy is insane and I should use one about a crack addict on the streets…bah!!!) Anyways, we gritted our teeth through the Frozen Sing-a-long and left looking for caffeine/lunch. I first went to sign the kids up for Jedi training camp later in the day (don’t tell Darth). Then Jesse was super hangry, so we just went to the stupid 18” hot dog stand or whatever it was. (I should note here that I LOVE small, pretty food….Jesse on the other hand is a volume eater…and he has the palate of a goat. I put the hot dogs on the table and went to find a Starbucks. Things did get better after that. We regrouped and all went on the Star Tours 3D ride, which was super awesome – even moreso because the Disney cast member who let us in was so kind and fun. They (once again) treated us like Royalty and told us to come back as many times as we wanted. After that we walked around for a bit then went to see the Indiana Jones stunt show, which was super-duper awesome and exciting. After Indiana, we took the kiddos to the new Toyland. The kids and Jesse went on the Slinky Dog roller coaster and then we went on a fun, little Alien ride followed by Toy Story Mania.
I stopped at one point to ask someone about the fireworks shows. I knew there was a Fantasmic show and a Star Wars show, but I didn’t know if they were at the same time or same place. Anyways, the lovely lady I spoke to told me they were in two separate places and she explained what to expect. She then told me to hold on for a moment. She spoke with her supervisor and told me she would put our family on the VIP list for tonight’s Star Wars show. I got the details from her and thanked her profusely for her kindness. We then went to the Tower of Terror. This was another ride that had a back warning on it, so Ben and I went shopping for a bit. One of my friends had given him $20 to spend, so I told him he could spend that. He ended up finding a Millenium Falcon that cost a bit more that the $20, so I chipped in a little. He was beyond excited, and I felt happy treating him because he never complained once when he wasn’t allowed on rides.
After we all met up again, we had to drop the kids off for Jedi training, which was pretty spectacular. The kids all suited up in their little Jedi Costumes and were taught the basics for fighting bad guys…and then THEY HAD TO FIGHT A BAD GUY! Darth Vader showed up and ended up kicking their trainers butt, which was a bit intimidating, but he left and then Kylo Ren showed up. Each Jedi trainee had to fight him, and they had some pretty impressive moves for the under 12 crowd. It was going ok, but he was pretty strong, and to be honest despite their moves, those little Jedis were losing big time. However, they then remembered that they could use ‘the force’, so things improved tremendously for them (not for Kylo). They each had a little battle with him and did some pretty impressive moves for an under 12 crowd. It was the force/light saber group combo that got him in the end. The kids had a great time, and I was glad we did it. We ran back to the other side and Jesse and Hannah went on the Aerosmith Rock’n’Roller Coaster while Ben and I hung out and chatted with strangers.
When we all met up again, we decided to go the Brown Derby (modeled after a famous Hollywood Restaurant) for dinner. We had some good food and wine. I had the Cobb Salad, which they are famous for because I was starting to feel scurvy coming on after a fairly produce free couple of days. All was right with the world again. During dinner we all made an executive decision to stay at the resort the next day. We knew that by deciding this, we would be sacrificing something down the road (probably Seaworld), but we felt that we needed a down day to just chill out a bit and check out our resort. After a great dinner, we went to our amazing seats for the Star Wars show, which was breathtakingly Disney….amazing! It was a rough start, but turned into an amazing day. Once again the kids got to bed around midnight!