Aloha from another day in paradise. We all woke up early this morning, very excited for Grace's character breakfast. That was one of her favorite parts of our trip to Walt Disney World, so we wanted to make sure we did that while we were in Hawaii too!
|All ready to meet some of our favorite characters at breakfast!|
It started with a special photo shoot with Mickey, and of course we had to buy the photos because they were so cute. There's one of just Mickey and Grace that might be my favorite from the whole trip. The characters are just so attentive and really work hard to interact with her. Mickey even got a few smiles this morning.
|This was one of my favorite photos in our package - I just love it!|
We definitely enjoyed the breakfast buffet too, especially all the fresh island fruit. Grace even got to try papaya for the first time. And Kyle, being the most adventurous one, tried things like Polynesian sausage. What we like about the character breakfasts is that characters stop by the table for greetings and photos, so Grace got to visit up close with Minnie and Goofy during the meal. She was less sure of Goofy, but Minnie definitely got some smiles.
|Checking out Goofy!|
|Visiting with Minnie too!|
After breakfast, we had a few minutes before her next scheduled activity, so we wandered down by the ocean. We took a walk down there on our first night, but didn't have a chance to put our toes in. So, we took this few minutes to walk down to the shore. I put Grace on my lap, and we let the waves roll in over our toes, and she giggled and giggled. I managed to get my entire butt wet, but the smile on Grace's face was definitely worth it. We plan to go back down and build a sand castle and let her sit in the ocean, but she had to be mostly dry for her next event.
|Grace's very first time in the ocean!|
Grace was scheduled for another activity "Fish are our Friends" at Aunty's Beach House. Since Aunty's Beach House is really just for kids only, it was also set up for just one parent to help her, and since I went to the first one, Kyle joined Grace this time around.
|I think it's safe to say the ocean is one of our new favorite places!|
Which is where I (Kyle) take over the blog for the first time in Hawaii. I was truly excited to get this opportunity to take Grace to the "Fish" program. I knew going in that she wouldn't be able to do a lot of the activities, but the most exciting part was getting to spend some quality one on one time with the Grace Monster.
|Grace got a new fish bag!|
Cy, the program's leader, spoke about the different types of marine life to start off the program as the kids learned about herbivores, omnivores and carnivores. Each child also got to mix up some fish food, which included some seaweed, vitamins and the little flakes like you would put in your own fish bowl.
|Grace and her daddy had fun at the fishy program!|
Grace did awesome helping me stir up our fish food and we had a good time at lunch watching Finding Nemo. After that it was time for a field trip to Rainbow Reef, where we would get to feed the fish. The food looked a little different than before because they add additional nutrients to it, which turns it a brownish color. It kinda looked like dog food, and smelled just as good, but the fish seemed to like it.
|They liked feeding the fish, even if the fish food was yucky!|
Despite it being pretty hot outside, the fish feeding was Grace's favorite part, kind of like when we feed the carp at Glenn Shoals Lake. Cy was nice enough to hold an umbrella over Grace and I and another Make-A-Wish family that is here from California. With her eyes shaded, Grace was able to enjoy the experience a lot more. If you want to see a little of it, there is a video at www.twitter.com/glhjourney.
After the fish feeding, we viewed some of the fish at the underwater windows and headed back for some apple sauce. Before we left, we received a DVD of Disney Nature's Oceans and a "Fish Are Friends, Not Food" bag.
Grace handed out a lot of smiles to the staff as we left, all of whom should be nominated for sainthood. They were so kind and helpful to us and they did their best to make sure that Grace was included, even though she can't participate as much as some of the other kids. The best part of the whole program though was that I got to spend three hours by myself with the Princess. It was definitely one of my favorite parts of the trip.
|Family selfie on the lazy river.|
After several days without a nap, we finally talked Grace into one today. I think all the fun finally caught up with her. But it worked out great, because we could do some late afternoon swimming.
|Daddy's sweet girls in paradise.|
She slept her usual hour and half, and then we got all suited up to try out the lazy river at the resort. Kyle helped us get situated in our inner tube, and then walked us around, lap after lap. We figure we made five or six passes through. It was a little overcast, which was just perfect so Grace could enjoy it. She even got to see Chip and Dale, who were greeting young fans on one of the bridges, and Dale waved to her!
|Grace liked the water in her face more than mommy did . . .|
Her favorite part seemed to be anytime we went underneath a waterfall, and all of us got soaking wet. She would just giggle and giggle. We stayed until our fingers were pruney and our tummies were hungry. We ordered room service and enjoyed some quality time together before it was time to go to bed once again. Just a few days left in paradise, so we want to be well rested to enjoy them!