I would definitely recommend scheduling at least one character meal. The lines for characters in the parks can be super long. It was so nice to know that we'd have a guaranteed chance to get up close and personal with Mickey and we had no need to wait in any lines in the actual parks. Do this! So fun, and you will be glad you did!
All things Mickey on our table.
Mary Ella and Charlie man. Best buds.
Sam enjoying the breakfast spread.
I want a Mickey waffle iron.
He spies a certain character making his way to our table.
"I love Goofy!" (Actually she's just excited about the waffles.)
But Chad really did love Goofy.
And so did Mimi.
Sam took refuge in Ann Marie's arms. No thanks, I'll just watch these characters from a distance.
Our sweet cousins
EK and Charlie
Chef Mickey's includes the original Disney characters - Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Pluto, and Donald. Daisy may have been there too, I can't remember.
Mary Ella was in hog heaven. Here she is nearly tackling Mickey with her hugs.
Sam loved the characters from a distance but was not a fan of getting close.
Here he is reeaaaching to give Minnie a far away high five.
I don't know what it was about Minnie, but she was the only one who was able to capture Sam's heart.
Donald Duck came over next. Here he is with Mimi and Poppa.
I swear I have never in my life seen this little girl smile so big as she did when meeting Disney characters. The grins were ear-to-ear every single time. It never got old.
Hahaha... Poor Sambo.
After breakfast we headed to Magic Kingdom (a quick trip on the monorail). I knew we wanted to do Enchanted Tales with Belle first because the day before, the line was 60+ minutes long and there is no FastPass for this attraction. We got there shortly after the park opened and the wait was already 50 minutes. I feel like it was more like 35-40 minutes though. Sam kept up with the time via Mimi's watch that she let him borrow. Every few minutes he'd check it and say, "Mimi. It's seven o'cwock."
This is Beast's castle (you don't actually go in this castle; but it's neat because the way they built it makes it look like it is off in the distance. The restaurant is actually inside the rock mountain.)
If you are a fan of Beauty and the Beast or have a little girl who loves Belle, I'd definitely recommend this attraction; it's nothing spectacular (and would probably bore older children and most men, haha), but they've done a great job recreating the movie scenes and the Belle-lover in me was secretly ecstatic. When you first enter, you are in Belle's childhood home; then you move into Maurice's work shop and a magical mirror opens and leads you into another room where you get to meet the big talking wardrobe. A cast member gives parts to anyone who wants a part in the story. Mary Ella raised her hand and she got to be the salt shaker in the "Be Our Guest" portion of the story.
After parts are handed out, you are led into another room where the cast member tells you that Belle is coming to help tell the story! Then she enters the room, looking as beautiful as ever in her yellow ball gown, and from there she helps Lumiere the candlestick re-tell the story of Beauty and the Beast while the kids act out the parts with their props. Mary Ella loved this. (You'll have to excuse the photo quality - no flash photography allowed.)
Afterwards all the children get to have their picture made with Belle. Cue gigantic smile. :)
After this we joined the rest of the gang and rode the carousel again and also went to Mickey's Philharmagic, which is an awesome 3D show that we all loved. Then we headed to Frontier Land again and rode Thunder Mountain railroad several times and then Pirates of the Caribbean. Then we went to Tomorrow Land and did Space Mountain (my all time favorite ride) a few times. (Mary Ella did not ride either of these roller coasters. Not a fan of the roller coasters at all.)
Chad and I ate a quick service meal at Sleepy Hollow, a place we'd read about online before our trip. Located in the Liberty Square area of MK (close to the Haunted Mansion ride), they are a quick service eatery with specialty sandwiches and funnel cakes. And their sandwiches are waffle sandwiches - yum. We tried both the sweet and spicy chicken sandwich and the fresh fruit and Nutella sandwich. Both were divine. They also have a ham, prosciutto and Swiss as well as a breakfast sandwich with eggs and bacon and tomato. I'm sure they are all good. The fruit and Nutella was our favorite. These are not listed as snack credits but you can get them as a quick service meal and they will come with chips, fruit and a drink. Score.
At some point everyone also rode the Little Mermaid ride this day - except for me, Mary Ella and Chad. Mary Ella was exhausted by early afternoon and desperately needed a nap. She had to skip this ride for that reason.
Note: Make time for naps. MAKE TIME FOR NAPS. MAKE TIME FOR NAPS.
This little dude, however, proved to be the MVP of Disney World. Being my best napper (he takes a 3+ hour nap on most days), I expected him to be the most difficult at nap time. But this guy could go all day long at 100% and ride, ride, ride, never acknowledging that he was the slightest bit tired. He LOVED it. Loved it all. (He did take naps most days in the stroller, but even when he was tired he was in a good mood; just glad to be at Disney wuh-wuhld I guess!)
While in Tomorrow Land, we ran into Stitch. Mary Ella of course was excited...
... and Sam quickly ran the other way.
This little one preferred Poppa to anyone else all week long. She loved the scooter rides too.
(She is pant-less here due to some hot temperatures that afternoon!)
We left early that day (around 6 or so?) and headed back to the resort.
We managed to snap a few pictures right outside the park gates while waiting on Mimi.
That night, Hollywood Studios was open until 10pm so my parents stayed with the kids in the room while Chad and I met up with Amanda, Chad and the kids at HS and rode the Rockin Roller coaster, Tower of Terror and of course Toy Story Mania. It was a fun way to end the day although I think I paid for it the next day because I was extra tired and pretty sore from all the walking! Either way it was a fun memory! (I think those roller coasters made me realize that I'm definitely not a kid anymore.)
Day 4 at Hollywood Studios coming up next!
See all things Disney here!