We started our very first family vacation by sending Jameson away to Aunt Melissa’s overnight so we could pack the days before; it took us all day (literally) and I’m so glad we were able to do that.
The final packing and getting ready in the morning was also stressful, right up until we were in the car… Actually, right up until the plane landed in Orlando. Jameson did wonderful on the plane. He wanted his headphones on as “earmuffs” like he wears to protect him from loud noises most frequently on the lawn mower with daddy. He also wanted to hold daddy’s hand for about an hour after take off. He wasn’t completely frightened, but certainly not relaxed either. He LOVED watching the Lion King on my iPad.
Coraline had a restless sleep the night before we were supposed to leave, which we speculated due to teething or gas, which didn’t bode well for our trip. Nothing better than a screaming baby in a hotel room all together, or a plane even just for two hours! We were pretty concerned about how the trip was going to go right up to and through the first full day there.
Coraline was a bit more trouble in the plane than Jameson; we were thankful that another passenger moved so we could all sit together so occasionally I could give her to daddy if I needed to get something. She didn’t want to sleep at all. She didn’t cry the entire time or even more than five minutes at a time, but she was restless and cried on and off the entire 2 hour flight.
We made sure to feed both Jameson and Coraline food for take off and landing to get that swallowing motion and protect their ears, which thankfully worked fine. Coraline finally passed out LITERALLY as we were landing, puff crumbs on her face and all.
We were so worried about the rain then the following day because when we arrived Monday evening, not only was it pouring rain, but the forecast had changed and was now showing rain all day Tuesday and Wednesday too! I was swallowing my disappointment and trying to remember that Jameson wouldn’t care a bit, even if it would make the while trip more difficult and less fun for the adults.
As it turns out, Tuesday was a great day with very little rain. We were so excited to have Uncle Tyler there as “tour guide” and Meemaw and Grandpa as an extra set of hands.
After a rough start with Coraline who had a pretty difficult night, we started my itinerary at Kilimanjaro Safari in Animal Kingdom, and the light almost drizzle and (relatively) cooler weather made it perfect for active animals.
We saw rhinoceros right up next to our truck, and a baby giraffe moved toward us through the tall grass as I imagine would occur in the wild. Jameson was thrilled the truck went through some shallow standing water like a pond.
Coraline even fell asleep in Meemaw’s arms holding her tight like a swaddle though we were jostled and bounced around in the truck.
We did the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail nearby afterwards to see a few more animals close up.
Then headed to breakfast with Jameson’s first character experience! He was tired from getting up with Coraline around 6, but was great meeting the characters. He met Daffy first, then Donald and Mickey. I thought he might be afraid, but he quickly got over fear and was just a little shy but happy to give hugs to a couple of the characters.
Mickey was great with Coraline, coming over to give her some extra attention and pose. We got to see Daffy then again, and he even gave her a hug on his own! Last we saw Goofy just before leaving our table to move on to see a show.
Coraline finally fell asleep in her stroller and my parents wheeled off with her for a bit so Jameson, Brian and I could see the Festival of the Lion King, and then we even got to leave Jameson behind and ride Everest. It was great to be able to ride an adult ride with Brian! I screamed like a little girl.
After some time playing in the playground at the Boneyard while Brian and I rode Everest, we went to see Nemo the Musical, which Coraline and Jameson both were fascinated with. Jameson exclaimed over the shark he saw later. Coraline watched the entire show, enjoying the beautiful colors and music.
We headed back into Dino Land and Jameson got to ride the Triceratops Spin then with myself, Meemaw, and Uncle Tyler which was cute.
Then Jameson finally got to relax (however a toddler actually relaxes) with some frozen lemonade while Coraline napped and Brian and I rode a couple more adult rides including Primeval Whirl and Dinosaur.
The day was perfect, even with the humidity since the sun mostly stayed behind the clouds. We ate dinner at Kona Cafe in the Polynesian Resort which was pretty rough after a long day with exhausted children, though the food was great. We had a wonderful service experience there when Grandpa’s food was delayed. Meemaw took Coraline out to walk during dinner but she was pretty beside herself.
We were concerned that the entire trip was going to be rough on Coraline, but thankfully she settled pretty quickly after her second tooth broke through the following day. Magic Kingdom here we come!