Monday, September 23, 2013

Florida - Day 4 - Day of "Rest"

Our fourth day here was pre-planned to be a "rest" day at the resort.  Admittedly, I'm not a great rester while on vacation.  Minus kids I'd probably be happy to take a nap or lay by the pool for a few hours, at least, but particularly with kids, I find it hard to stay in one place for too long.  I feel like if I really wanted to lay around, I could do that at home.  When I'm somewhere cool, I'd rather be doing something cool.  And with kids, it's hard to let them get too idle without them getting into trouble.  So, our rest day was inevitably going to be busy, but without a forced long day at the parks, we figured it'd be a little easier. 

We started the day with a little pool time.  The pool here is really nice and has an awesome waterslide--it's a sandcastle with a Mickey head where the slide heads into the pool. 

It all feels very fancy and tropical with all the palm trees and Key West-ish music (think Jimmy Buffett, steel drums, reggae, etc.), and the pool felt great with all the heat we've had (have I mentioned it's been at least high 80s and humid every day?).  I convinced a very reluctant Jacob to go down the waterslide with me, because I was sure he would love it, but no...no, he did not.  Or at least, at that point he wouldn't admit it.  So, we took turns in the pool to accommodate a sleeping Carter, who woke up during my shift with him.  Check out the cool swim gear I scored on clearance for him at Babies 'R' Us a few weeks ago...
Perfect, eh?
Jacob decided he wanted to play in the sand, so Craig took a shift over there with him...

...and Carter and I headed to the kiddie pool to splash around a bit.  Eventually it was about time for all of us to eat.  We headed back to the room to clean up, and then hopped on a boat from our resort to Downtown Disney.  It seemed like a much simpler process than the buses, where you have to wait for the right one and go to a bunch of stops.  The boat takes a 12 minute trip down a canal, directly to Downtown Disney.  Not too shabby.  The trip goes past a couple other resorts and a golf course before popping out into the lake that Downtown Disney is adjacent to. 
Golf course along the way, with the observation balloon in the distance, just before coming out into the lake
We wandered through the property and shopped a bit.  Jacob was exhausted and fell asleep in the middle of it, so we tried to toss him into the stroller and carry Carter in the Bjorn, which went reasonably well.  The heat has been an issue, and getting Jacob to nap is no picnic...not only because he'll fight going down if you purposely try to make him nap, but because he'll also want to stay up late that night.  Ugh.

Downtown Disney is a pleasant combination of festive and commercial, if that makes any sense.  It's very obviously a cash cow, but I enjoy the ambiance and evenings are pretty cool with live entertainment around every corner. 

The candy store was making special candy apples (seriously, they're about $10), and it was really cool to watch. 
Notice the Mickey ears...marshmallows!  The red is sugar!
The Lego Store sculptures were totally different from our last visit, with the exception of the dragon in the lake.  This time there was a scene from the end of Toy Story, where Buzz and Woody rocket themselves back to Andy's car... 

And two Snow White ones...


...along with a classic Lego knight and dragon...

I've taken a lot of random smiley Carter pics this week when we've been hanging out during bathroom breaks or rides.  Here's a gratuitous happy boy shot...

We're still on the hunt for good souvenirs, so we've done a decent amount of shopping the last few days, starting with a toy store that had a Mr. Potato Head building station.  Jacob was really proud of his boy and girl pirates.

He's also developed a bit of a crush on Cinderella.  Not only did he choose Cinderella 2 as one of our movies to rent, but he's also been eyeing up this rather girly Cinderella doll thing that also has a prince in it.  Jury's still out on how comfortable I feel letting him get it.  But we did totally let him take a picture with Cinderella outside another store...

Craig and Jacob built Lego guys at the Lego store (and I even got to make one!).  Jacob and I also got our picture with Woody and Buzz.  What you can't see here is Carter screaming his head off while we waited our turn.

It ended up being a much later night than anticipated, but it was a gorgeous night and the boatride back was peaceful.  Back on dry land I took this shot of the full moon, which gives you a little idea of the blissful evening that I wanted to remember...

We were still dealing with a lot of Jacob issues, but made the decision to go against doctor's orders and try to go gluten-free while we're here.  His behavior was so bad that we felt like we had to do something.  I guess the good news is that at least we'll see how he does off of it a few days.  They're really great about allergies here, for the most part, so I guess it's a good place for this to happen, but it's definitely hard to manage when options are limited.  Still, it was nice to get out of the resort at our own pace and enjoy a leisurely stroll on a nice night. 

Four days down, four days left...up next, Animal Kingdom!

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