Tuesday, September 24, 2013

D'World: Downtown Disney, Pop Century Resort & Animal Kingdom

The journey continued on and on past swamps, Crackerbarrels, scary rest stops, bridges, me saying- "I don't want to go to the restroom there at that place!" and then we finally arrived....  John drove the whole trip himself, 'cus you know I'm all gimp-eyed and stuff of that nature...

We stayed at the Pop Century Resort. Now, we didn't arrange these plans on our own. As a kid, my family and I didn't go to the Smithsonian or the Grand Canyon, no, no, we just went to 2 places: Disneyworld or Lake City, CO. That was it. So I do know my way around Disney fairly well.

HOWEVER, I am new to this whole meal plan and there are a whole lot more resorts than when I stayed. So we went with a professional agency to hook us up with all the reservations: hotel and meals. I feel like I'm not talking enough here about the food on this trip.

Sweet, gracious mercy.

The Food. 

(Outside the blog conversation b/w imaginary concerned friends: Hey guys, someone's gotta tell Gillian to stop talking about food in every single blog post. I know right? It's getting... weird... Maybe we can just bring it up to her or tell John or something. No way, that guy's nuts! He has that crazy look in his eye. I hear he is all into Sci-Fi and stuff. Oh okay, well let's just pray about it. Agreed!) 

Jim Gaffigan, comedian and truth speaker, does a funny bit about Disney and how you walk 1,100 miles in 976degree heat and STILL gain weight simply because that D' Food is so spanking good. We got waaaaaaay spoiled on it. Way. As in, where's the dessert? Where's my snacky? Pot roast for lunch in the West Wing of Belle's castle, well isn't that what everyone does for lunch these days? No. No, they don't. I don't. On a special day I eat leftovers for lunch in front of a computer. So magical.

HIGHLY recommend getting the meal plan. Because all you gotta do is make those reservations (or hire a pro- Family Fun Travels in Mississippi was our choice thanks for the referral from our buddies!) and then budget for tip and eat like a food eating competition rock star. We definitely recommend Family Fun Travel's services 8:)- Mickey Mouse face.We are budget conscious and we didn't have to pay for their amazing service in planning our vacay AND we were able to break up the trip into payments which be budgeted for. More to come on how to save some cashola in future posts this week...

You know what, to heck with it. Food will get it's own proper posting. Separate from all this foolishness. Just you wait and see!

The resort was great. I will have to say that there was a leeetle more walking than I expected, but I just counted that mess as pure joy that I was exercising from eating what I will post about later....

So after we dropped of the 'gage at the resort, we got lost- I mean to say- drove to Downtown Disney.

You know that scene in Minority Report where Tom Cruise straight up loses his kid at the pool because it was so crowded? And you are watching it all like, why am I scared and sad I thought this was a sheer action/sci-fi film and now I'm disturbed!?!?! Well, Downtown Disney was THAT CROWDED.

For the love of Benji, we about lost our crap in that place. Pardon, but it was alarming. John about drove back home over it. He doesn't "do crowds." Ikea to him is kyrptonite. 

But we had a promise. A surprise promise. Our kid just had had her bday and she is ALL ABOUT dinosaurs, y'all. So we did the dang thang and went to:

It's like Rainforest Cafe on acid. Whatever that means.
 Leelah made this face the entire time. Because her mind=blown.
Then for the next 20 minutes she did a robotic dinosaur reenactment. It was funny.
I was too busy trying to not lose my kid to take more pics of this place. This was just one of the 5 landscapes- the water one. It was amazing. In the true since of the word. 

Our kid is clinically obsessed with animals. For real. SO we began the plan at Animal Kingdom. And we did it right by scaring the absolute pants off of her for her very first ride at Disney...

 After the traumatization was over, she got silly with a dinosaur and I was happy because I went to the bathroom and heard: "Everybody walk the dinosaur!" 
Yeah, that ride is scary. 

Our sweet travel agent DID warn us!!! Sorry Terri we didn't heed your pleas.

Oh well! On we went to the safari. Now look y'all, you know we are never going to go on an actual live safari in our lives. But at Animal Kingdom, you do. Please to see the pictures.... Leelah had fits of joy.

Leelah as a flamingo.

 Did you know a group of hippos is called a "Bloat?" Now you do and that is power.

 This was actually at the Animal Kingdom Lodge restaurant- SOGOODOHMY...

Hold that phone call, I'll be right there!
We got to hear this tiger make sounds. Yeah, that was a highlight. All reverb and such!!

This is Leelah watching that tiger. Can you see and feel the intensity?
I mixed up these pics by the way. We were never allowed off of the safari ride. Some of them are just the walking around a looking at animals parts. It's like a zoo, but way more awesomer. 

The best ride: Expedition Everest- well, after the safari! Leelah LOVED that ride, but not Dinosaur. Go fig. 

Thank you Lord for animals and kids that love them so.

Tomorrow, we talk Magic Kingdom!

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