Tuesday, January 7

Animal Kingdom

We spent our 2nd full day at Animal Kingdom. On our last trip, we didn’t do Animal Kingdom. We had planned on it, but it just didn’t work out. We wanted to make sure that we made it this time. We woke up bright and early and were at the park by 8am. I had heard to do the safari first thing in the morning so that the animals were really active. Great decision!!

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I loved seeing all the Christmas trees at every park!

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The kids signed up to be Wilderness Explorers (like in UP) for the day and had to complete small missions and earn badges. They had a ball doing it! Great idea, Disney!

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Tree of Life!

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The safari was amazing!!! All of the animals were out roaming around and we saw SO many different animals!

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It was also fun to different characters out at this park! Like Louis! LOVE him!!

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I have to admit that my heart burst wide open when this happened! The entire time were were there, Gray kept asking to see Donald. As soon as he saw him, he ran straight for him, arms wide open! Gray has my grandfather’s wild, sweet spirit and Donald was always his favorite Disney character. I knew that this whole trip, Pop was right beside him having just as much fun. It was heart-warming and heart-wrenching all at the same time. He would have SO loved to experience this trip with his great-grandbabies. #DavisandDavidloveDonald

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Gray LOVED DinoLand USA!! He ran wild and free for over an hour!! Sand, slides, and stairs to climb.. he was HAPPY!

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Can’t pass up a good photo op with Minnie and Mickey!

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We had lunch at Tusker House. Gray slept through his Donald visit this time, unfortunately.

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After riding some of the larger rides, like Kali River Rapids and Mt. Everest (which was absolutely terrifying, I might add!! AND, my 6yr old rode it TWICE! I’m honestly surprised he didn’t come home with a broken arm after riding it with me b/c I had a death grip on his arm the ENTIRE time.. I was more than convinced he was going to fly right out of that seat!!! Terrifying.. absolutely terrifying!! Ethan LOVED it!), we caught a quick parade.

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The animal people were AMAZING!!!

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If you’ve ever seen The Lion King on Broadway, they were very similar to those animals. I was quite impressed!

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We LOVED Animal Kingdom! It was by far the most relaxed park of the 4. We had such a fun, slow-paced day! Just what we needed after all the excited and hustle-bustle of Christmas Day and Magic Kingdom the day before. Spending Christmas in Disney was the BEST decision we’ve ever made. We got to thoroughly enjoy the holidays with our children. It was amazing! Not to mention, the 80 degree weather in December was a nice bonus! We are seriously considering making this an annual tradition!