The Weekly Peanut, Issue 219
Ian has been earnestly getting D reacquainted with the pool and trying to get her swimming skills up to snuff.
Progress is very slow. We've finally decided it's time to just enroll her in swim lessons at the Y.
Ian's had a few late nights for work, so D and I find ourselves running errands together during the week. The pink ranger love continues. Ian surprised me Friday night by letting me know that we'd be celebrating my birthday with a hotel Saturday and to pack a bag for our planned Hollywood Studios trip. YAY! We made it down to Studios as the park was opening, and I was finally able to get D the Pink Drink at Starbucks she's been asking for forever (It's one of their refreshers with coconut milk).
In case you're wondering, she liked it better than the Unicorn Frapp. We ended up heading to Launch Bay and visiting with the Jawas for a while.
D ended up hanging out with this Jawa for a long time, teaching her how to play Minnie's Home Make-over. They curled up with our friend, Sara, and basically had a cell phone launch bay party, playing puzzles together while we waited for Amanda and Maddie. Our #1 task of the day was to take the girls to meet BB8; the little astromech droid recently made his Launch Bay debut. We got into the ever-growing line and were joined by our friends. I'll say this, the line moves relatively quickly.
D was quite taken with BB8. Ok, I was too. He's honestly so cute. He even leans in to the pictures, and will give attitude. I think it helped that we had Taryn as an attendant in the room, who did an EXCELLENT job of translating BB8's sounds for us. Even his sass, which my kid returned in kind.
BB8 is basically my kid as a droid. I really love how this meet is set up, and the lighting is actually pretty great in the room.
The girls even got to give him a hug goodbye.
We headed over to say hello to our favorite walking carpet after that.
Maddie wanted to go back and visit the jawas, and it turned into another little slumber party of jawas curled up on the floor with my kids, playing cell phone games and even having the occasional cuddle or tickle. At one point, a jawa stole Sara's phone and D showed it how to snap a bunch of selfies. It was one of those surreal disney moments where I realize my kid is sublimely happy doing a rather mundane thing in a very extraordinary situation. Then I, in turn, feel sublimely happy that I get to see it happen.
When it was finally time for us to leave Launch Bay and enjoy some ridees, the girls got a private escort.
We were passing One Man's Dream and noticed there was a new preview playing, so we checked out Dead Men Tell No Tales.
The scene we got to see was pretty promising. We haven't really been fans of any of the movies except the first, and so far this definitely seemed to have a more upbeat and fun vibe like the first one did. So, fingers crossed. D was quite taken with it and kept asking questions about it the rest of the day.
Photo Op Pit Stop.
The weekend of birthday surprises continued with reservations for Mama Melrose's, my first time!
The service was fast and attentive, the ambience was a lovely peaceful break from the hustle and bustle of Studios, and the food was pretty good, too. Not sure if I'd go back, since I'm not sure if it was good enough to reflect the prices, but the whole experience was very enjoyable.
We had time before our FastPasses, and D managed to find a coloring station inside a store. Of course.
Maddie really wanted to do Disney Jr. It had been ages.
Watched a Jedi Training. Summer is looming and we are definitely starting to feel the heat. Still, we'd promised D we would watch a Star Wars Fashion show, direct sunlight and all.
We headed out front to visit with some Disney Pals.
D was acting weird and kept trying to hide her Abu tsumtsum from Aladdin. Didn't stop him from chasing her down.
Bless you, Aladdin, for doing your best Elephant impersonation and making my kid giggle uncontrollably.
After that we FastPassed our way onto Toy Story Midway Mania and Star Tours.
It was around 5 by then, and we were all getting hungry so we said goodbye to make our way to Disney Springs for dinner. D made me stop for a quick photo op on the way out at her new favorite window display. She is SO stoked for this movie, y'all.
Our Disney friends were out front as we were leaving, including Chip and Dale who weren't out when we were there before. So we decided to make a brief stop. I got into the munks' line. Meanwhile, D and her dad were wandering around. D started hollering at Meeko, so he came over.
D and Meeko struck up a rousing game of hide and seek. I honestly missed most of it from where I was in line, thank goodness for Ian and his phone. It was so cute and everybody gathered around was laughing at their antics.
Thank you, Meeko.
At last we were the last group that got to give some love to Chip and Dale. They instantly pulled her into a little group dance.
Finally we made our way to Disney Springs to check out The Polite Pig, the newest offering from The Ravenous Pig. They were already packed, but the counter service line moved quickly and we were even able to wave at James, the owner, through the window to the kitchen.
The place looks great, the food is absolutely incredible while still being the most approachable of any of their restaurants. Although it was counter service, servers still walk around offering to get additional items or refilling your drinks. There's a great sauce bar with different kinds of bbq sauce and hot sauces that you can mix into your own concoction if you want. I just loved it. I can't say enough good things, and for $15 the amount of food I got was downright impressive. There's a kids' menu, and all the items come with carrot sticks with bbq ranch dip. The carrot sticks were actually lightly pickled, and when D finished 2 and declared herself full, Ian and I dove on the rest. After dinner we decided to take a little walk for some digesting time. That's when I remember that one of D's favorite people works at Disney Springs...
Lauren had just finished her shift at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, so the girls ran out into the dance party that was going on with a DJ right outside and got their groove on. Such a nice way to cap off our day.
We headed to our hotel, the Hilton Bonnet Creek. It's one of only a very small handful of hotels on Disney Property that aren't actually Disney hotels. It's very chic and modern, and the view from our room was pretty breathtaking.
We even let D stay up and watch Star Wars Galactic Spectacular, Illuminations, and Wishes (all of which we could see from our window, all of which were happening almost on top of each other).
We woke up pretty early the next morning and headed down to enjoy the breakfast buffet. It was pretty expansive, tasty, and all three of us ate for $20. Not bad. Of course we had to go check out the pool. The Hilton has its own Lazy River AND a slide. Heaven on earth.
She must have done that slide about a billion times. It wasn't that late in the day but we were all feeling pretty tired and over sunlight, so we headed back to the house. Shelley and Aria had been dog-sitting, and they were still around. D promptly joined Aria in the pool.
By the time they left, D was d-o-n-e. We all were. We curled up on the couch together, D watching Power Rangers, Ian on the playstation, and me reading. Staycation wasted.