Ty got to hug and pose with Dr Seuss characters!
From there we went over to the ride one fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish. It's one of the very few rides Allison was allowed on. She was pretty indifferent to it, but hey, she got to try it.
Mike's family had planned on paying for express passes that day, so the original plan had been to meet up with them at lunch time and to have Oscar take the kids and mom back to the hotel whenever mom decided her knees were done for the day. While we were playing I got a text from Mike saying dad had decided not to get an express pass and mom had decided not to come into the park at all. Since that was the case I figured it'd be best to take the kids back to the hotel so that Allison could have a nap in a crib, Tyler could have his down time, and he and Oscar could come back to join us as soon as possible.
The first thing I wanted to do after the kids left was Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. As you can see from these crowds, it was always busy. Anytime we looked at it on the Universal app it said the line was around 2 hours long, which was why we hadn't gotten around to it yet. I noticed on the website, though, that it had a single rider line, so I figured I'd get through it much more quickly that way. Dad didn't think he'd be able to go on it since he'd been unable to fit in the seats on the same ride in California, so I really had no reason to get in the regular line anyway.
Dad tested himself in the sample seats they had available before we got in line, but he couldn't close the overhead bars enough to get the green light. He went through the line with me, though, since he figured it'd be better to stay with me than get separated in the big crowds. He sat down on the ride and was pleasantly surprised to find he fit in without a problem! Those test seats must be extra conservative.
What a ride! It really is everything you could want in a Harry Potter attraction. I was so mesmerized I didn't want to blink. It's incredibly well done, and even the line is awesome since it takes you on a tour through the castle. I would have liked to take more pictures from the inside, but the single rider line moved too quickly.
Speaking of moving quickly, it only took dad and I ten minutes to do Forbidden Journey in single rider, including the ride. It actually took longer for us to get through the crowds to put our stuff in the lockers. You can see from the top middle picture that the day was no less crowded than the other days we visited, so the line was still plenty long but it moved incredibly fast. This is a constant loader ride where the seats never come to a full stop and you just walk in as they glide by (like Haunted Mansion, Ariel's Undersea Adventure, or Buzz Lightyear at Disneyland). I have a hard time believing even the regular line was ever two hours long since constant loader lines always move so quickly.
Dad did decide to accompany me on "Popeye and Bluto's Bilge-Rat Barges," the ride Oscar and the kids had accidentally done on our first day. Turns out that was the wettest of all the rides, and we got completely soaked. At least we both had fun!
Oscar and Tyler met up with us then, so we took him on the nearb Shrek 4D. I don't remember clearly the Shrek ride in Hollywood, but this seemed better to me, and Mike agreed that it did have more special effects. The ride exited right into the parade, so we stayed and watched it. The vehicles had stopped to dance and entertain, and we were right in front of the Spongebob float. Oscar held Tyler in his arms until I found a little place for him up front near a man in a wheelchair.
He loved watching the parade and of course, giving the blue fish big hugs and high fives. He really is he best hugger! I hope whoever was in that suit enoyed it just as much.
Ty needed to move after all that standing, so we took him over to the Curious George play area. I'd put him in his Curious George shoes that morning so he could get a kick out of wearing them in the Curious George play area, but that was a poorly thought out idea since it's an enormous splash park. We wouldn't have wanted him in dripping wet socks anyway. Every one of those rooms and windows is just filled with ways to get you completely soaked and ways for others to shoot water at you.
But if you're willing to brave the water, you can get through to this awesome ball room. There were hundreds of balls everywhere, vacuums, guns, you name it. Tyler could have stayed in there happily all day, and he threw a fit when I told him it was time to move on.
He cheered up though once we got over to the character cutouts. He still loves posing for these.
Allison had stayed the night at Mike's hotel, so it was just us and Tyler in he morning. I decided to take him to the playground by cutting across the pool area, but he pulled an Allison and walked right on into the pool. He went much deeper than Allison, so of course, I had to follow him in. We both swam and sat in the hot tub in our pants and shirts.
After dryng off we picked up Allison and met the family for lunch at Uno's pizzeria. We were actually supposed to meet for breakfast but both of the breakfast places we went to were super crowded, and Unos was just opening, so we knew it'd be empty. Allison was so active and fussy I had to take her out for a walk until food had arrived.
Later on we went swimming (in swimsuits this time) before giving the kids a double bath in Mike's HUGE tub. The kids went to bed fairly early so I hung out in Mike's room talking to mom and dad while mom helped me finish up the laundry. Allison woke up fussy after a couple hours when we realized we'd forgotten to feed her dinner and had assumed she'd eaten at the poolside gril with the family. We fed her some late night yogurt before putting her back to bed. This made me feel much less like a terrible parent.