Doing Disney with Three Kids Under Three: Magic Kingdom

I got up a little after 7 this morning and heard the boys just before their usual wakeup time of 7:15. We used a Hatch Rest to sleep train them, with a low orange light and rain or static playing through the night and a green light with tweeting birds that comes on at 7:15 AM. We disabled the wakeup for the trip on the off chance that they’d wake up later, but that hasn’t happened. Anyway, once 7:15 hit I used the app to change the Rest to the wakeup routine and got them up, letting them go wake their mom up pretty soon after I let them get up.

We didn’t rush to get out the door, but we were able to leave sometime a little after 9:00 I think. They hardly ate any breakfast. I did have some time to do my first of the month billing and answer a question that came in about it almost immediately.

We noticed yesterday that our double stroller’s tires were flat, so we stopped at a gas station right down the road from us. I used my card to activate the air pump, and even though it said it was authorized it didn’t do anything. I went to say something to the store clerk and she told me, “Nobody else has complained about it today.”

It was 9:15, 9:20. I said, “Well I’m complaining right now.” She went on to explain that if it didn’t come on it didn’t actually charge it. I told her the reader said it authorized it and she insisted that it didn’t charge it. I just checked my bank account and it did charge it. It was only $3.50 (although it looks like it actually charged $4.00), but I was really irritated about it because of the lady’s attitude. I started off very polite about it.

Fortunately for me, someone else was using the pump as I was walking out (I assume they used cash) and there was plenty of time left on it for me to fill up the stroller tires. After that it was on to the Magic Kingdom, which wasn’t far from our hotel.

We parked in the Simba section in a largish puddle which was just about the only puddle left in the parking lot when we returned later in the day. We loaded Fawkes and Phoenix into the double stroller, Griffin in a smaller stroller we just happened to have brought. Tristen originally thought maybe we’d put him in a carrier, but I’m really glad the little stroller was there under the double stroller. It would have been really tough keeping up with him otherwise.

Park rules stipulated that anyone two and over was supposed to wear a mask, which meant Fawkes and Phoenix had to wear them (we practiced some last week at home), but Griffin did not. Phoenix did great with his; no fuss at all. Fawkes threw a fit. I was still fighting with him over it when Tristen got in line to get our passes, but she swapped with me, which was nice because I was really getting frustrated.

That was the only fit anyone threw the entire day, which is amazing. Fawkes later got used to the mask and even pulled it up a few times when I reminded him to do it.

It took a while to get through the social distanced line, but once we did we quickly loaded ourselves onto a ferry, taking a spot at the front of it so we could let the boys, who mostly stayed in their strollers, see the water in front of them. It was a bit cold on there. I mean, it was a little chilly and overcast anyway, but the sun came out now and then early in the day.

We unloaded and walked up to the park. When I presented the passes a lady said to me, referring to the twins,”They’re not three?” I told her they were two and their birthday was next week. She gave me a skeptical look, but didn’t say anything else. Surely we’re not the only people to bring kids to Disney World right before they turn three to get them the experience before we have to pay for them. Don’t worry, lady. It’s very likely that the next time we come we’ll be paying four times as much in tickets as we did this trip.

I had this image in my head of us walking up to the main street when you first walk into the Magic Kingdom of the boys all just being overcome with wonder. Picture the look on Fawkes’s face on my Halloween entry, but with him in the middle flanked by Phoenix and Griffin, each looking a little in the direction they’re on. Low angle, blue sky behind them… It wasn’t anything like that. They were all in strollers fiddling with maps we’d just picked up for them that were being messed with by the wind.

That’s not to say they weren’t in awe of anything. They were taking everything in as we walked down the street and seemed to be admiring the art on the inside of Cinderella’s castle as we walked through that.

The first ride we went on was the Mad Tea Party (the spinning tea cups). A younger two-year-old named Calvin who was in line behind us made fast friends with Griffin. They were hugging and high-fiving. Anyway, all the boys enjoyed the ride. I didn’t spin it like I normally would have so Tristen wouldn’t throw up, but she did spin it a bit for them.

We went on a good number of rides: Dumbo, Aladdin’s Magic Carpet, Ariel’s Grotto, the Haunted Mansion, a couple others. We did the Magic Tiki Hut, with the talking and singing birds, which they really seemed to enjoy.

My favorite thing we went on was the Barnstormer, which is a small (but legit) rollercoaster. I had to have Fawkes and Phoenix stand next to the height thing, and Fawkes, who is a little bit smaller than Phoenix, just barely made it (which puts him at 35 or 36 inches tall). They told us that each kid their age had to have an adult with them, so I couldn’t take both of the twins myself, but they have something similar to a fast pass (which they’re not doing right now with the Covid restrictions) where a parent can go, get off, and then take the fast pass line with the other kid. So I went with Fawkes (who was the first to jump out of the stroller when I asked who wanted to go) and Tristen took Phoenix.

As we climbed the first hill I said, “Up, up, up!” the same way I read that in Are You My Mother, and he repeated it. He looked a little worried at first when we went down and around the curves, but then he started laughing really loud, so he definitely enjoyed it.

We got some large soft pretzels (along with a hot dog and a slushie) to eat, but they didn’t want any of it. The little plaza we ate in was inundated with ibises.

The last ride we went on was a Winnie the Pooh ride. I was disappointed that we didn’t go on It’s a Small World and Pirate of the Caribbean, and we didn’t even make it to Tomorrow Land. But it was getting towards 4:00 and while the boys were all good, they were getting really restless in the Winnie the Pooh line, which wasn’t a terribly long one, and those other rides had longer waits. On top of that, it had been cloudy for a while and it was getting pretty cold.

Because of Covid, the characters weren’t out and about, but one employee I asked about that said they have little pop-up appearances here and there. As we were walking towards the exit we saw a parade going on and missed that, but Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto, and other characters were up on a balcony at one of the buildings near the entrance/exit, so they did get to see them.

We left on the monorail, partly because I thought it would be cool to let the boys ride on that (the twins rode one in DFW almost a year ago during our Cozumel trip), but also because it was cold and the ferries are very open and on the water, so that would probably not have beeb very pleasant.

We got back and loaded the boys in the van. I think Griffin was out before we were all the way out of the park. Fawkes followed shortly after and Phoenix wasn’t far behind him. It was about 4:00 by then and we didn’t want to wake them up moving them to their beds, so I went to a Starbucks with a sign that said they were open, thought they were not, as we only found out after driving all the way around the building and seeing a sign that they were closed by the drive-thru. I was going because Tristen likes to collect the location specific coffee mugs they have.

We went to Target after that to pick up a few things. Tristen went in and I stayed in the car with the sleeping boys. They woke up in the order they fell asleep just before Tristen got back to the car, except for Phoenix.

It was about 5:00 when we got back to the resort. Laura came out to help us unload and we ordered food from a nearby place.

The boys took a bath in the garden tub in our room. They weren’t huge fans of the jets being on, but they enjoyed the bubbles created by them with the bubble stuff their mom poured in.

Duke was playing Miami, so I watched that. Despite playing really well against Clemson a few days ago and looking like they’d turned a corner, Duke lost to a really bad Miami team, which makes it really questionable as to whether they’ll even get to be in the NCAA tournament this year. I expect Carolina to whoop them this weekend. It’s all very disappointing.

I FaceTimed with Milly towards the end of the game, around 8:40. Not much to report other than she’s back at school with her crutches and her knee is feeling a bit better, but not 100% by any means. She sent me a really good picture she created recently. I know I’ve said it before, but I sincerely think she’s very talented with the characters she draws.

Tristen and I discussed tomorrow’s trip to Animal Kingdom. We were at the Magic Kingdom for a total of about five hours, so we figure that’s more than enough time to Animal Kingdom. We want to go later in the day because it’ll be even colder tomorrow (though hopefully with less of the biting wind), so we might not go until the afternoon, and we might have Laura drop us off and pick us up.

I have to say I was very impressed with the boys at the Magic Kingdom today. Having three kids under three at a theme park with only two adults can be a daunting thing, but they really did great after Fawkes resigned himself to keeping his mask on. Griffin wanted to mess with just about everything, but there was so much new stuff to see and experience that it was understandable, and he wasn’t being bad. None of them were bad at all (aside from Fawkes’s initial mask aversion. I was very proud of them.