Day 2 was the most unbelievably gorgeous, and it's a little sad we weren't already at the parks for that reason.
But before I bore you with the weather, let's talk about the waking. Oh the waking. Basically, Mitchell, Jordan, Beckett, Riley and Mason were all flying in from Utah - through the night - and getting in at around 5am. They took the Magical Express shuttle from the airport, but the magical express took them to Animal Kingdom Lodge (where we'd be checking in later in the afternoon), so Dad had to go pick them up in his car and bring them back to us, at Pop Century-- at around 5:30 in the morning.
Warning: Long explanation Below (only proceed if you give a hoot)
Brannings do not do mornings. Not realizing the gravity of this has resulted in casualties.
So at 6am, since the exhausted 'through the night-ers' needed room in the inn, and my mother and McIntyre gave up their beds and their room so that they could all crash. But now, it was early for Mom and Mack, having gone to bed VERY late (like 1am) and they wanted more sleep as well. So at 6am, our door opened, and Mack and Mom snuck into the empty bed in our room. Oh, but nothing is sneaky enough for Catcher's ears. The boy immediately got up from his pack 'n play and started oohing and cooing. It was time, at least in his mind, to be up for the day. Tom tried to fight it, we pretended it wasn't happening, we put him in our bed, between us and tried to keep him asleep. But as the old Disney World commercial states, "[He was] too excited to sleep." Which has now gone from sickeningly cute to sickening.
With everyone in their beds, and in the pitch blackness of our room, Catcher commences with the WEIRDEST excited breathing routine that anyone has ever heard. We try to ignore it and keep sleeping, but no one can now. In fact, now we're all cracking up. Tom throws a pillow at him. It's over.
Tom reluctantly gets out of bed, puts clothes on him and the baby, tells everyone else to go back to sleep, and that he will walk him around. Of course I had to go, too; there would be no sleeping for me now.
So we set about walking the empty, themed grounds of our hotel. It was a GORGEOUS morning though. I already said that.
Tom expressing the general sentiment.
But when we came out of our room, we could hear that Beckett was also not even close to going to sleep, since he knew there was stuff going on, even though he hadn't slept more than like 2 hours the whole night.
So Mitchell and Jordan, in their unbelievable exhaustion, said, "Fine, we'll walk, too." and we walked and walked and walked, strolling the two little baby turds throughout the property.
Finally grandaddy emerged and said, let's get to breakfast everyone. It was probably around 7 now.
When we got to the cool commissary and got our breakfast platters, Catcher was the most elated among us, because they were playing Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on all of the big screens while we dined.
Watching MMC with Grandaddy.
After this, we found that Mitchell and Jordan and Beckett were all ready to get back to sleep, so the rest of us walked, and walked, and walked some more, because where else would we go with all of these sleeping people in our rooms.
I actually had that walkman.
Basically the 90s really gave us some stupid words, and yet, so functional.
When Ashley arrived a few hours later, it was time to take a big family ride to our actual resort for the whole rest of the week.
This place is pretty breathtaking.
The view from one of our rooms.
The view from the other (our room.
These guys were out there the whole time it seemed.
Dad. In his element.
Walking the bridge between rooms. Everyone's pretty excited, and comically jet-lagged.
When I went to check in, Tom and I decided that we might as well start the shameless vying for free stuff and attention for Catcher, and got him one of these babies at the front desk. More on the results of that later.
Catcher was just learning to walk like 3 days before, so it was tear inducing to watch him walk those slick floors.
And then there was the drumming. Sweet mercy, so much drumming.
Beckett was having a similarly awesome time. For those boys, anything is better than being on an airplane or a confined space of any sort, even a hotel room.
After we were all checked in and settled and happy with our arrangements, we got ready to get spend the rest of the evening at Downtown Disney.
Bus ride to Downtown Disney.
Catcher fell asleep on the bus ride. Aunt Riley did the honors.
It was a super gorgeous night at Downtown Disney.
Catcher was very content, but poor Beckett. It was his only hard night, and it was understandable, I mean, he was running on a day and night of about 4 hours of sleep (at the most), so considering that he was pretty stellar.
And how cute is he looking like The Karate Kid, even though it's actually his favorite ever, "J-J-J" or Jake from Jake and the Neverland Pirates.
What I look like in my head: A towering, long-legged, gentle giant...
And Mason would have child-bearing hips.
This is pretty.
Catcher loves water, but gets super crazy when he's around it. Like mental.
Jordan basically should have been Maleficent (she looks awesome) and Beckett was only, OK with it. Catcher, surpassingly, ate it up.
One of our 'must-do's' this night (besides 13 people at Earl of Sandwich at some point), was to get Catcher's Mickey ears in advance of the parks. I felt like this was a very important rite of passage for him, and made probably a very ridiculous deal out of it all, but it was the best money I've spent in some ways. I had ears similar to this as a toddler, and it was awesome to see him in his. Plus, he wasn't completely opposed to wearing them once he saw us being ridiculous in them.
Speaking of ridiculous things we were doing with hats....ugh.
Everybody Wang Chunging that night...
And then there were the bubbles. Some street vendor had the right idea. Catcher was enraptured. We kept saying, "If this is how happy bubbles at downtown disney make him, what is tomorrow at Magic Kingdom going to be like?" I pictured him having a baby heart attack.
Beckett and Catcher were basically as spent as could be at the end of this frenzied day, and it was very necessary to get them home and have everyone get a decent night's sleep. Catcher, I swear, knew what was coming, because he was WIRED.