Archive from July, 2015
29 Jul
2015
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Walt Disney World: Epcot

Close-up view of Spaceship Earth at Walt Disney World Epcot

My feelings on Walt Disney World’s Epcot are complicated.

Spaceship Earth at night in Walt Disney World Epcot

It’s the park geared toward adults with smaller crowds and more free space to wander. The pace was less frantic giving the illusion of being a tourist in a different country taking in architecture and food instead of a typical theme park. I didn’t feel pressured to hurry from place-to-place, which was a welcome break from other parks in Disney World, mainly Magic Kingdom.

Monorail line at Epcot in Walt Disney World

BUT, I would have enjoyed Epcot more had we not had to weave our way through smalls groups of people who had clearly been drinking too much alcohol on their way through the countries in World Showcase. I was not interested in the bar-hopping scene, especially in the middle of the day. My idea of the happiest place on Earth didn’t include inebriated 20-somethings. The saving grace was that the size of the crowd was manageable.

Mickey Mouse ears in Germany at Walt Disney World Epcot

We spent most of the day split into a boys group and a girls group. Epcot was much easier for visiting princesses than at Magic Kingdom. Craig and the boys spent much of the afternoon in Future World while our little princess and I country-hopped in World Showcase to add more royalty autographs to our book.

Exterior of Mission: Space at Walt Disney World Epcot

Future World, at the front of Epcot, is where the rides are located. Mission: SPACE simulates a space launch offering your choice between a mild or intense version. The boys chose the mild ride due to a warning about frequent motion sickness on this ride. The mission includes interactive roles for participants like commander and engineer. The roles gave the kids ownership of what was happening around them, and they had to push buttons on the control panel at certain times during the ride.

The Sum of All Thrills attraction in Walt Disney World Epcot

Test Track and The Sum of All Thrills were also a hit with the boys. In Test Track, you design your own vehicle and test it on a circuit. It was a nice break from simply boarding a thrill ride with the boys’ required to engage their brains before enjoying the ride. The Sum of All Thrills also required engineering, but this attraction is designing your own roller coaster before testing it. After designing the ride, visitors board small capsules on robotic arms to take a ride on what they designed. It was interesting to watch the capsules go through the motions from the viewing area. No two were alike.

French server street show in Walt Disney World Epcot

Craig and I enjoyed walking through the back of Epcot where World Showcase is located. There are 11 countries to visit with restaurants, gift shops and small street shows. While I could have visited each country in depth, the kids were only interested in brief glimpses. There was an acrobatic theme to our favorite shows in World Showcase. France’s Serveur Amusant, who specializes in balance acrobatics, was a hit with the kids. I spent his show praying he wouldn’t fall. The Jeweled Dragon Acrobats in China are known for balance and strength. We’re lucky none of the children attempted any crazy stunts after watching both of those shows.

Moroccan food in Epcot - Walt Disney World

My favorite food in Disney World came from Tangierine Cafe in Morocco. The wonderful Mediterranean dishes were a refreshing change from burgers and fries. The couscous salad and hummus made my taste buds extremely happy.


Boys riding the Nemo attraction at Walt Disney World EpcotManta ray swimming at Nemo aquarium - Walt Disney World Epcot

The biggest surprise find at Epcot was The Seas with Nemo and Friends. The ride portion of this attraction didn’t hold the attention of our boys. They repeatedly looked at us from their seashell and made faces that clearly meant, “will this ride ever end.” In contrast, we had to drag them out of the multi-floor aquarium we toured after the ride. They bounced from window-to-window looking at all the sea creatures.

Soda dispenser at Club Cool in Walt Disney World Epcot

Visiting Epcot proved that my children are ridiculously easy to please. We stopped at Club Cool in Future World West to sample Coca-Cola soft drinks from around the world. Our kids rarely drink carbonated beverages, so letting them loose to dispense their own soda and encouraging tasting several varieties left them giddy. Some flavors are much more tasty than others, while one should be avoided. I’m not telling which one. You’ll have to taste for yourself.

 

Follow our 6,025-mile adventure.
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Planning for Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World: Visiting Magic Kingdom
Walt Disney World: Star Wars Weekend
Walt Disney World: Animal Kingdom

 


 
Walt Disney World: Animal Kingdom
By     |    Jul 24, 2015
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Walt Disney World: Animal Kingdom

I didn’t think the humidity could get much worse than we had endured until the morning we walked into Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World. The sky was void of color, replaced with gray haze. I stepped off the bus and my glasses instantly fogged while dew collected on every service, including us. I feared the humidity would lead to a rough day in Animal Kingdom, but the kids were impervious to the weather once we were immersed in the... [Read More]

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Walt Disney World: Star Wars Weekend
By     |    Jul 23, 2015
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Walt Disney World: Star Wars Weekend

A few years back, it came to my attention that Walt Disney World holds Star Wars Weekends annually in May and June. Our boys were obsessed with Star Wars at the time. I took Jedis to the grocery store with me and forced Stormtroopers to remove their helmets for lunch. Their book choices and LEGO sets revolved around Star Wars. I watched YouTube videos from Star Wars Weekends and knew if we were ever to visit Walt Disney World, it... [Read More]

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Home from Summer Camp
By     |    Jul 18, 2015
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Home from Summer Camp

I answered the phone this afternoon and was greeted with, “Hi Mom. I missed you.” It was the first time in six days we had any communication from our oldest who was at Boy Scout summer camp, and he had missed me. He missed all of us, but let’s focus on the part where he missed ME. I had to keep myself from crying tears of joy and relief. I’m such an emotional sap. He was full of stories from... [Read More]

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Summer Camp Blues (Again)
By     |    Jul 15, 2015
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Summer Camp Blues (Again)

I remember that last month of my first pregnancy 13 years ago. I checked and double-checked the lists of tasks to complete and items to buy. I told everyone who asked that I was ready to welcome that baby boy. I was a fool. I’ve thought about how unprepared I was for motherhood many times over the years. It’s apparent after this week, that my biggest hurdle to overcome is my inability to let go. Letting go is one of... [Read More]

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Visiting the Magic Kingdom
By     |    Jul 10, 2015
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Visiting the Magic Kingdom

The magic at Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom begins before you enter the park. The promise of Disney magic can drag even the most reluctant child from bed. There are many benefits to arriving before the gates open at the parks in Disney World. We were greeted by the mayor and several characters made an appearance by train at the Main Street, U.S.A depot 20 minutes before the official gate opening of Magic Kingdom. There were thousands of people, even... [Read More]

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Planning for Walt Disney World
By     |    Jul 8, 2015
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Planning for Walt Disney World

I have two words for potential visitors to Walt Disney World: be prepared. Seriously, don’t arrive in Orlando thinking everything will be magical without planning beforehand. There is a lot happening at Walt Disney World. It’s important to know your options and fit those with your family. Everyone’s trip to Disney World looks a little different, much like a fingerprint. Our visit was fast and furious. We’ve visited Disneyland in California twice and felt our experiences there would be helpful.... [Read More]

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Universal Studios Florida
By     |    Jul 1, 2015
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Universal Studios Florida

Walking through the brick wall into Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida is magical in a way I didn’t know existed. Looking up the crooked narrow street leading to Gringotts Bank and the massive stone dragon perched on its roof stopped us in our tracks. It was the Diagon Alley I had envisioned all those years ago when I read the Harry Potter series the first time. Harry Potter and Ron Weasley could walk out of the Leaky Cauldron any minute. The air... [Read More]

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