We left on a Tuesday afternoon, so we spent some quality time at the airport trying to run Audra down to give her a better chance of tolerating the next several hours of being in transit.
I had been a bit worried about the weather forecast for Wednesday, since that was our "big" day at Magic Kingdom and it was calling for severe thunderstorms. Ryan's parents brought ponchos though, so we headed out to the park anyway to see how bad it would get.... and it actually worked out beautifully. The main part of the storm system passed just south of us, so it poured for portions of the day, was sunny for other parts, no thunder, and less crowds than normal :)
Audra and Ryan didn't go to the park on Wednesday, instead hanging out at the hotel and then going to Disney Springs to play at the Lego store and eat at Rainforest Cafe... only getting a little bit wet in the process and bypassing the normal crowds there too.
[Before Josie and I departed the hotel]
[Playing with shadows in line]
We went right across to It's a Small World after that, with only a short wait for that ride too. And then we went over to Pirates of the Caribbean, which had a posted 10 minute wait, which seemed absurd enough... but then we walked right onto it. After that, we went to Country Bear Jamboree... also without a wait. Given the pattern that seemed to be emerging, I thought I'd try to get us onto Peter Pan again. So while Josie was entranced with the singing bears, I managed to get FastPasses for Peter Pan within the next hour... and then was able to get FastPasses for Ryan's parents for the same time.
Thursday's agenda was for Ryan's mom and I to take both girls to Magic Kingdom for half a day, while Ryan and his dad handled checking out of the resort and picking up our rental car. I thought Audra would be pretty excited about all the things to see, but I wasn't sure just how well she'd handle waiting in line... or really, any of the rides. So after our super productive first day at the park, we significantly reduced expectations of what we'd be able to see the second day and I tried to pick rides more age-appropriate for her and minimize wait-times however possible. Step one of that strategy involved getting to the park as early as possible, which the girls weren't quite prepared for.
[They actually (mostly) did just fine sitting in such close quarters]
Audra particularly likes Tinker Bell, so our first stop was to meet her. I rather foolishly got a FastPass for this, and I'm pretty sure the workers (sorry, "castmembers" ;)) had to brush the cobwebs away to open the FastPass line for us... and we got to jump ahead of maybe 4 people in the non-FastPass line. Ah well. Josie was excited to meet Tinker Bell, and Audra was just dumbfounded. She just kind of stood there staring at her for a bit before turning to me with a look of glee on her face as she exclaimed "Tinker Bell?!"
[First glimpse of the castle]
We then headed over to the Winnie the Pooh ride, also selected because the girls like Winnie the Pooh so much. We had a FastPass for this one, so at least the wait wasn't as long... but I didn't realize that the ride would be just a little bit scarier than poor Audra was ready for. She was a little unsure almost right from the start, but when it went through the "storm" and it got dark and Tigger started popping up all over, well... she didn't know what to make of it. So she laughed, cried, clung to me, pushed me away, and finally settled on whimpering through the rest of the ride while holding desperately to my arm. I felt terrible for her, and yet we got out of the car and she immediately cried "Again!" and I was like, are you kidding?! I need more time to recover from that! Also, there was a long line, so no, we didn't ride that one again :)
[Before she knew what she was getting into]
Next up was Dumbo, our third and final FastPass for the day, and so really all we were actually planning on getting to. Audra liked this one very much (even though the control wasn't working so we weren't able to make our car go up and down - but perhaps that was for the best, given my motion sickness!), and she tried to make a break for it when we were leaving it to sneak back on. We had time for one more thing before our lunch reservations, so we went over to the Tiki Room because it had a short line and we thought the girls would like it... and we were right. Josie was transfixed by the singing birds, and Audra danced, sang, and clapped all through the show, and then adorably said good-bye to all of the birds and totem poles as we were leaving.
[Not the most effective way of gathering sand that I've seen]
[Audra was not impressed with Ryan's sunblock application]
Then she finally recovered, we went back to the table, and she calmly and happily ate all her food like nothing had happened. Sigh. Two year olds.