On the 18th we woke up refreshed and bright-eyed—at 3:30 AM Hawaii time, which is actually 8:30 AM NJ time. I wish I was kidding, but the three of us were ready to start the day—only the rest of the island was sleeping.
Uncle Carlo proceeded to shower, dress and walk around—cray! I proceeded to lay in bed with JD and watch cartoons. The character breakfast at Makahiki opened at 7 AM and you better believe we were there and the first people to get a pic with Mickey. We dined on a buffet loaded with family-friendly breakfast food including JD’s favorite: Mickey waffles. I enjoyed lots of Greek yogurt and tropical fruit—and coffee! Mickey, Minnie and Goofy visited the tables and Aunty got all of the kids up for a parade. JD and his fellow tiny vacationers marched around banging coconut shells together. It was so cute and a treat for parents, who got to relax with their coffee and breakfast, since the parade took place at our viewpoint and was well supervised by Disney cast members.
After breakfast I took JD to Aunty’s Beach House and Uncle Carlo, Mr. Early Riser, went to the room to rest. On our way to Aunty’s we discovered a beautiful fishpond—JD counted all of the fish and kept saying, “They’re moving and I’m losing count!” When we got to Aunty’s Beach House, JD’s eyes lit up! Designed for ages 3 to 12—Aunty's Beach House is a kids club where younger guests explore Hawaiian culture, art and music through complimentary activities that capture the essence of Hawaii. (There's a cool screening room that loops Disney movies and shows, in case your kiddo needs a little R&R) Childcare service is available so you can leave your kiddo and enjoy the spa, an excursion (a bar!) or just relax by the pool.
My motto when traveling with my son, is to travel with my son (it is true, I am obsessed!). Even though Aunty’s was gorgeous, safe and secure (when you leave your child they get a digital sign in/sign out wristband) I didn’t really use the childcare service. Well, I did for 40 minutes, when JD begged me to let him partake in a kids-only, Stitch’s Space Goop Project: Stitch and the Professor come to visit and show the kids how to make neon yellow, wiggly, jiggly space goop! So, I sat right outside of Aunty’s by the pool and enjoyed a freshly brewed iced tea. (I also spent plenty of time with JD playing at Aunty's and enjoying the grassy backyard and jungle gyms.) When the Stitch project was over, a cast member called my cell and I signed JD out and into Uncle Carlo’s care for two hours. (It was great to have Uncle Carlo on hand so JD could have some 1-on-1 guy time—it's super important, single moms!) While the boys floated in the lazy river, made sand castles and ate lunch, I hung out with my new media friends (HI!) and Disney executives. We embarked on an awesome, fun (no, really) guided tour of the beachfront resort. View the grounds here.
One of my favorite parts of the tour was learning about the Kapa art, pronounced COPPA! (Yes, I’m serious.) See photo of me and the gorgeous Kapa curtain below. You can learn more about Kapa at KapaHawaii.com I got to meet Kapa artist, Dalani Tanahy, at a media breakfast and bought two Kapa wall pieces on the spot—gorgeous.
Aulani A Disney Resort and Spa is a magical, beautiful place bursting with traditional Hawaiian culture and art from every angle + a subtle, glittering tinge of classic Disney! (There are no spinning tea cup rides—but trust me, you won't care!)
Enjoy these pics!