Pirates, Sea Creatures, the Beach, and of course, Disney

February 28, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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It seems that whenever we have friends and family to stay with us during their vacations, we eat and spend like we’re on vacation, too. But that’s ok – I can’t even remember the last time James and I took a real vacation, anyway. (Actually, I can. San Francisco in April 2008. Four years ago, sigh.) Another perk of living in a vacation destination. Our friend Travis came to stay for a long weekend. Liam calls him “Un-tle Travis” because as friends go, he’s like a brother to James.

We kicked off Friday with a trip to Sea World. We couldn’t leave without seeing the Dolphin Show and the underwater dolphin viewing, at Liam’s insistence. We had a great lunch at Shark’s Underwater Grill, this time not sitting quite so close to the shark tank as we had before, but enjoying the views nonetheless. We pooped out before the 4:30 Shamu show. Maybe next time.

After an afternoon of rest (in which Liam actually requested to come to the Y with me. Though he still cried a little when I left him at the day care), we had an entertaining dinner at Pirate’s Dinner Adventure — as you probably guessed it, a pirate-themed dinner theater. At the entrance we posed for a photo. Liam, of course, refused to wear a pirate hat. And he wasn’t sure what to make of the pre-dinner theatrics, which were held in an open area where parents could purchase pirate swag for their kids and, non-coincidentally, purchase alcoholic drinks for themselves at the bar. Once the pretense for the show was set up – the island governor’s daughter kidnapped by a pirate and his haughty crew – we all filed in to sit in our color-coded sections. Each section was led by a “pirate in-training” and throughout the show they would be put through pirate challenges in which we’d root for our own pirate to win. As we cheered for our blue pirate (who had a name, I’m sure), it looked more and more apparent that he was falling for the governor’s daughter. Sure enough he leads a mutiny, recues the girl, and they live happily ever after. There were lots of sword fights, cannon-fire, and swinging from ropes, all while we dined on decently good pirate-themed fare. Liam did better than I’d feared, only wanting to leave about 10 minutes from the end, and mostly because he was getting sleepy. We’re thinking this might make a good fourth birthday activity for him, something he’d probably prefer to a party. With people.

 

On Sunday we headed to Cocoa Beach to enjoy some sand and surf (but no swimming, brrr!), and seafood. Travis hadn’t seen the beach since he was a kid, and I think he enjoyed it much more than he thought he would. It started to drizzle, so James and Liam waited in the car while Travis and I waded up to our knees. Befitting, since Liam thinks he’s melting every time it rains on him, and James doesn’t like getting the “outside” on him. Travis wants to come back to the beach when he visits again, and he seems to think he can convince James to come with us. At least I know Liam loves the beach when he can play in the sand. The seafood joint I found was decent, though I think we’ll try another one next time. Liam sure liked playing outside while we waited for our table!

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Monday Travis and James spent a day at Hollywood Studios geeking out at the Star Wars store (getting their heads superimposed on Han Solo and Luke Skywalker, lol), and Liam did his own geeking out when we met up with them at the Cars meet and greet. Usually Liam could care less about getting his picture taken with Winnie the Pooh or a Disney princess, but when we pulled up to Mater and Lightning McQueen, Liam went bananas. He got a little shy when it was his turn to pose, but he talked about it all afternoon. Afterward we went to the car stunt show, and he was again star-struck as Lightning McQueen chased a spy car around the set. It was a short segment of the show, and Liam kept asking where Lightning McQueen had gone. Then, with a little three-year-old logic, he concluded that he’d gone to get ice cream, and we needed to get ice cream with him when this was over. Aye-aye, Liam!

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Liam happily enjoyed his ice cream dinner (yes, I know, bad parents!) while James and Travis enjoyed their revoltingly sweet dino-themed drinks at the T-Rex Café at Downtown Disney. This place is always a hit with Liam.

When we weren’t out sight seeing and running poor Travis ragged (I think he’ll need a vacation from this vacation), Liam followed Uncle Travis around the house like a lost little puppy. Getting him to brush his teeth in the morning is always a battle, but when Uncle Travis brushed, Liam happily volunteered to follow suit. They played trains, cars, took a walk to see Liam’s favorite parts of the subdivision (the cul-de-sacs have usurped the gate for that title), and they even stayed up late on Monday watching Cars 2.

In a couple short weeks we’ll be hosting more vacationers, this time my in-laws. We can’t wait!

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