Saturday, December 8, 2012

Universal Studios - Orlando


Homeschooling is such a blessing...I'll admit that one thing that I love most about it is the fact that we can pick up and go on vacation whenever we want!  Last month we had an opportunity to pack up our suitcases and run off to Orlando with my parents.  James had to stay behind, which was a bummer, but we did manage to have a wonderful time anyway!  For the first time we went to Universal Studios.  I wasn't sure what to expect but I knew that we were all super excited to check it out!
 

A large portion of the park is Dr. Seuss...  We had fun riding the Caro-Seuss-al Carousel.   Playing the the Lorax's House and riding the Red-Fish-Blue-Fish!

 

Careful thought, you may get sick and barf over the side of a boat.








 We also met the Cat in the Hat!

Maggie impressed me this trip with some of the things she would ride...  She rode this Pterodactyl ride with  me in the Jurrassic park...  It was 80 secs of downhill sliding hanging in a little swing.  One of the coolest rides ever...but the wait was SUPER long...  
 

 I also discoverd that Maggie is getting too big for the stroller....darn.  Her feet would drag if we weren't careful!







The best part of the park was the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  Kayley was unfamiliar with Harry Potter so we quickly read the first book, Harry Potter and the Sorcorers Stone before going and watching the movie so a few things would be more meaningful.  I'm glad we did.  It was really, really cool...and looked like we were walking on the movie set!   We have no plans to read the rest of the Harry Potter books but it was really neat.

Here is Kayley in front of Hagrids house.  It was part of the queue line for the Hypogriff's Flight mini-roller coaster...
 
 
Both girls rode this little roller coaster over and over again.
Again, I was so surprised by what Maggie was willing to do!

As you walk through Diagon Alley you can look in all the shops windows and see some pretty interesting things...  The Quidditch balls were trying to escape and were bouncing around...  You could buy "Mandrakes" and they were squealing in the windows...the book store had pictures of the authors and they would move in the pictures...oHHH...and Moaning Myrtle talked your ear off in the bathroom!

 You could buy robes of course (they are 100 bucks!!!), and wands (cheap plastic trinkets) at Ollivanders.  My Dad makes WAY better wands that you will find in the Harry Potter park so we skipped trying to get in to Ollivanders.

 Couldn't resist an opportunity to try Butter Beer though...it was yummy.  It is pretty much a butterscotch type Cream Soda with crumbled up sugar cookies on top...  You can buy them regular (like a soda) or frozen (like a slushie)....


It was really neat and the girls really wanted to go back.  Alas, only 1 day at Universal...but 4 days at Disney!  I'll post about that later!

The Hogwarts train is there for you to take photos with, but you totally cannot get on, nor can you get up on the platform!  Kind of a bummer....


 Not that I needed to....I visited the REAL Platform 9 and 3/4 in England several years ago...and it didn't let me in....  I've got too much Muggle in me I guess....

So, we had a great day at Universal....  I would LOVE to go back!

Thanks Mom n' Dad for letting us tag along!



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