*This experience first appeared in the Weekly Peanut & Princess Aurora Petition, I'm also chronicling it here for those who strictly want Disney character meeting write-ups*
So I spent a lot of time humming to myself "I've got a golden ticket" once I managed to snag the most covetable Anna & Elsa FastPass. My secret?
You look for single FastPass instead of multiple then diligently KEEP CHECKING.
Before our FastPass window opened, we had to have an Anna/Elsa appropriate outfit change.
Finally the hour was upon us, I told D we were going to meet Anna & Elsa. I don't think she fully grasped what was going on as we headed to Princess Fairytale Hall. I was worried, I'd heard horror stories about the wait even with FastPass being pretty hefty, but we walked right up and were ushered almost immediately into our private room behind about 4 other groups. Finally, D got a look at the ladies and figured out what was going on. Her jaw about hit the floor. Seriously, she was dumbstruck. "Who is that Daphne?" GAPE GAPE GAPE. "Is that Elsa??" More gaping. It probably took a good ten minutes to get through the line. D was getting a little antsy, trying to charge the rope. "No, Peanut, we have to wait our turn. These other people get a chance to meet Anna & Elsa first, then you." Then this adorable little girl in line in front of us all princess'd to the nines turned around and told D, "Don't worry, they make sure everybody has a turn, you'll get to see them. Right after me." That little girl was a trip. I talked to her about her other experiences with princesses and how many she'd met, she was quite the old pro.
While waiting our turn, (and still trying to keep D from bumrushing the rope), I watched group after group leave the embraces of Anna & Elsa, only to completely shut out poor Aurora. Most of them wouldn't go near her, barely standing next to her for the obligatory photo op. Most of the kids had no idea who she was. Watching her just made me get sadder and sadder. I think my favorite part of starting to do these princess greetings has been to see how much FUN it is for the Princesses, seeing the joy on kids' faces meeting their heroes and being enthusiastically embraced and engaged in conversation. Aurora was getting NONE of that. Ouch. When our line was halfway gone, D finally got over a little bit of the dumbstruck awe she had on first seeing Anna & Elsa and noticed that there was another Princess in the room. She eyeballed Aurora (who was already getting major pity stares from me) then pointed and asked me "Who dat?" I crouched down next to Daphne, "That's Aurora. Aurora was one of Mommy's favorite Princesses when I was a little girl like you. Do you see how these other kids are ignoring her or not being nice?" She nodded. "That's pretty sad, huh? It must be tough for Aurora, watching how excited everybody is to see Anna & Elsa, and then getting no love herself." D continued to look at Aurora thoughtfully.
Finally, D got her turn with Anna & Elsa. It was the most quiet I've ever seen D during a character meeting, she was totally awestruck. She couldn't even rip her eyes off Elsa for the first minute or so. I sensed this Elsa awe is a common theme, when Anna plaintively asked toward the end "Any chance I can have a hug, too?" Poor Anna, no magic, always in her sister's shadow. At least some of the kids in line were sporting her shirt, though. Aurora? Not so much. After clinging desperately to their hands, talking about her dress, and getting hugs, it was time to say goodbye to Anna & Elsa and move on.
As I walked D over to Aurora, she was still staring back at Anna & Elsa. She took Aurora's hand and Aurora tried to engage her in conversation. Suddenly, D found her voice. "ELSAAA! ELSA ELSA ELSA!" she pointed enthusiastically. Aurora, bless her heart, clearly she's used to this. "Oh did you just meet Queen Elsa and Princess Anna? Aren't they sweet?" D still didn't look away from Elsa. At that point I engaged Aurora in some chit chat. I told her she was my favorite Princess growing up, and that it must be tough getting roomed with the popular girls while most of these little kids haven't had a chance to see her movie. Aurora did not miss a beat, "Oh, well, I think that, with Maleficent's movie coming out, this will all turn around for me soon!" Bless your heart, Aurora, I hope so.
D was still totally basking in Elsa. Aurora was not to be deterred, "Who's that on your dress? Is that Anna & Elsa?" Ohhh compliment D on her clothing? Clever girl. That finally got her attention.
D finally granted Aurora some eye contact and she ran with it. Mostly they talked about Elsa, but at least Daphne was looking at Aurora while they talked. Then D really surprised Aurora: she tackled her.
LOOK AT AURORA'S FACE! Tell me that poor Princess wasn't in need of a hug! It was the first one I'd seen her get since we'd been in the room, especially a hug that wasn't prompted by a parent's encouragement.
Maybe D sensed that, because after posing for some more pictures, she gave Aurora another hug, even bigger than the first. You could have knocked that princess over with a feather at that point.