Saturday, March 4, 2017

A Day Out With Our Granddaughter

Friday is an off day for my daughter so it's usually the day that we go visit with her and our granddaughter. Usually, it's a fun day for all involved since the best place to hang out for the day with lots to do for all of us is either at a Disney or a Universal theme park. Today, the Magic Kingdom is the park selected, so we meet them at their house and off the to Magic Kingdom we go.

We park in Peter Pan on the Heroes side and take the tram to to the monorail - it's the first ride of the day as far as my granddaughter, Brooke is concerned (as always) and she enjoys the rather cool breeze in her face during the trip. She knows what's ahead.

Monorail Teal takes us to the Magic Kingdom entrance where I go through the NO BAGS entrance while the girls go through bag check. For once I am not directed towards the metal detectors, even though I already have the contents of my pocket ready to come out. But I am not complaining and wait by the bag check when I see Iris being approached by security. She's asked if she has someone who can take the stroller (and Brooke!) while she goes through the metal detector - this is a bit of a twist! At first she says no, but then spots me and I take the stroller and her tote-bag while she walks through.

Off through the scanners where I get to use my brand new version 2 Magic Band for the first time.

My daughter, Iris, has made some FastPass+ reservations for us, and the first one of the day is back in New (is it still "New"?) Fantasyland ... Dumbo! This was one of Brooke's first rides at the Magic Kingdom and she really enjoys it. We get there barely in time for our FastPass+ window, and when Brooke sees where we are she gets excited. While we waited for our ride, she spots the Barnstormer and watches it intently! She really doesn't miss a thing! It's clear she wants to ride it, but she will have to grow a few inches yet. For now she will have to settle for the rather calm Dumbo. Of course, on the ride, she has to control the up and down movements ... the rougher the better ... she will definitely be a thrill ride person when she is tall enough!

Iris is very good when it comes to scheduling FastPass+ and as we exit Dumbo, our window for Winnie the Pooh is about to open, so a quick stroll - park the stroller and Hundred Acre Woods here we come.

Our next FastPass+ isn't until after lunch (Aladdin's Flying Carpets) and lunch will be at Skipper Canteen, so we head over in that general direction - possibly considering a stop at Country Bear Jamboree. On the way my wife wants to stop and look at the Trading Post to see what pins she might buy. While there I have a look to see if they have any Memory Keepers, the alternate holders for the puck in the new Magic Bands. (I have mentioned that it is removable?) Happily, they do. They have two styles ... one is a piece which will clip on to a lanyard and the second is a carabiner which can clip onto a belt loop or such. I opt for the carabiner. Since I wear a Garmin fitness device on the wrist where I would otherwise wear my Magic Band, this will relieve me of having to wear something on both wrists!

By now we decided to skip Country Bear Jamboree as it is getting close to our lunch ADR, and head for Skipper Canteen to check-in. We only have to wait a few minutes before we are taken to our table. (If it seems like I was just here, I had been only a few weeks ago with friends.) After we order, I get my new purchase out and proceed to move the puck from the band to the carabiner. When you buy a Magic Keeper, it even comes with the small screwdriver needed to do so. (Warning - be careful when you do it ... those screws are TINY!! Also, you will need to remove the retainer in the Magic Keeper. At first I was a bit tentative so as not to break it, but you will need a bit of force to get it out, so don't be gentle.) It was simple to make the swap and very quickly, my new Magic Band was a Magic Carabiner!

After our meal (a noodle bowl with chicken, a noodle bowl with duck and a "Tastes Like Chicken Because It Is" and a kids mac and cheese) we decided to have a look at the dessert menu. Among the items was this which caught some eyes. (Not the original form, sadly)

It sounded good so I got it ...

Lunch behind us, we now take our ride over Agrabah on a Flying Carpet, completing our three original FastPasses for today, so Iris checks and makes us new ones for Pirates of the Caribbean for just a little bit later.

Since we were right there, we went into another of Brooke's favorite attractions, The Tiki Room. As always, she "sings" and "dances" along with the entire show! I was actually quite surprised that the show was almost completely filled. I haven't seen that in a long time.

Once done, it was just about time for Pirates. Iris mentions how long it had been since she had been on Pirates, and I then realized that I had not ridden it since way back in December, 2015!! There was an issue with the boats taking on water then and my socks and sneakers got squishy. Happily that problem now seems to have been solved. However, this would be Brooke's first ride on Pirates. She fully enjoyed it, taking in all the sights along the way. This won't, however, be her last "first" of today. After we get off the ride, Iris once again hits the My Disney Experience (MDX) app on her phone and we have FP+ for Monsters Incorporated Laugh Floor - so that's our next stop.

A stop at the Carousel is in order of course

Once more Iris checks MDX and voila we are headed to the Tea Cups. This will be another first for my daredevil granddaughter and we have no doubt that she will enjoy it. I will even forego my usual manic spinning of the teacup for this occasion.

By now, however, we should have realized that nothing we could do would bother her. Iris and I spun it slowly at first and then only slightly faster - and yep - she thought it was great! We probably could have gone faster, but as it was we were spinning pretty good.

By this time the sun was going down and it was getting a bit chilly (I knew I should have worn long pants!), so we decided to call it a day for today, but there was still one thing we needed to do. As we passed a stand on the way out of Fantasyland, we had to stop for popcorn for Iris (and Brooke had popcorn for the first time!) and a certain frozen treat for me. Here is a picture for those who are interested ... you know who you are!!!

After a stop at the candy store on Main Street so Iris could buy some treats for her husband - Brooke had her last "first" of the day ... a jelly bean!!

Back to the car - back to Iris's house where a now sound asleep Brooke has a date with her crib ... and we head back to our own home. Another typical day with the granddaughter in the books. (Well - typical for us!)

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