Doing Disney with Three Kids Under Three: Animal Kingdom

Our day started when Phoenix walked into our room at about a quarter past 7 this morning. I’d stayed up last night to write this and watch WandaVision, but I wasn’t too tired. It was pretty chilly yesterday. It was even chillier today, but we bundled the boys up and walked around the resort a bit with Nonnie. We went to a gazebo and then the little playground. As we were walking around Fawkes stopped almost constantly to pick up sticks from the sidewalk. He threw them into the pond at the gazebo, prompting his brothers to do the same.

We decided to go after putting Griffin down for a nap. Fawkes was pretty crabby, so we put the twins down too a little later. After looking at the weather we’d decided to go to the Animal Kingdom after nap time anyway, figuring it would be warmer and there’s less for the littles to do anyway. We definitely wanted to go to Animal Kingdom for the safari though.

While they were napping Laura and I went to an outlet mall to get a few things to get through the cold. I ended up buying a few things for me and Tristen from a couple Columbia stores, including a vest which, despite how light and thin it is, really does a great job of keeping warm. I also picked up some churros, because Tristen has been wanting some since she saw some at Magic Kingdom yesterday.

Tristen told us the kids were up while we were there, but it turned out that only Phoenix was actually awake. The others were up soon though, and we all got ready and headed out, getting there around 2:00.

To save on parking, Laura agreed to drop us off and pick us up, but it turned out that since we went as late as we did they were no longer charging for parking.

Fawkes complained about the mask again, but also got over it pretty quick again. That was, once again, the only real issue we had during our visit to Animal Kingdom.

Going late on a cold day (though we did over-bundle and ended up shedding some warmth pretty early) was a great choice. We waited in line for literally nothing until the very end.

The safari ride was awesome. I’ve been on it twice before, but never had the animals as close as they were during this trip. I could almost have reached out and touched a rhino and an ostrich. Several giraffes walked right in front of our vehicle. The only hiccup with it was that all the boys, particularly Fawkes and Phoenix, kept wanting to go from one side of the thing to another to see the animals, and the ride was a very bumpy one so Tristen and I were struggling to keep them contained. It was a really great experience though.

We also did the Bug’s Life thing; a 3D interactive thing where they the movie has things like bugs blowing and spitting, with blasts of air and water spraying the audience members. Phoenix freaked out at the second thing (the bug spitting) and I ended up taking him out. He cried for a while and I finally got him calmed down, but he started up again a few minutes later when everyone else came back out to join us. Fawkes was really sweet with him. He kept hugging him and telling him “No bugs,” and trying to tell him to be happy. After we tried to distract him saying we were going to see dinosaurs next Fakes kept talking about dinosaurs and roaring at him.

The park was pretty empty, but Dinosaur Land was absolutely dead. I mean it was a ghost town. It looked like pictures I’ve seen of abandoned amusement parks. The only people there were going on a ride that is basically the Dumbo/Aladdin ride, but you sit in a triceratops. Why a flying triceratops and not a pterodactyl or something? I don’t know. But the park was getting ready to close and there were no people in line, so we ended up riding it three times. Fawkes was getting over it by then.

We didn’t realize the park was closing at 5:00 and we were bummed that we hadn’t gone to see the Avatar-themed Pandora section, so we decided to walk by it. While there we saw that people were still going to a ride, so we decided to jump in line even though the park should have been closing in about two minutes. That’s the only time we had to wait for anything, but we still didn’t have to wait long. The ride was something where you go through Pandora, just a little drifting river ride kind of thing, but it was really cool to see and experience.

We headed right for the exit after that. Fawkes started getting upset once he realized we were going through the exit, but he calmed down soon enough.

Back at the resort we fed the kids some homemade naan pizza, which they ate up yesterday but picked at tonight. Well, Griffin ate all we gave him and then a bit. Phoenix eventually ate most of it, Fawkes ate more once we told him it was time to go to bed. We grown-ups got some Mexican takeout.

That was our day. It felt a little more rushed, but it was still a really good time and the kids did great.