On Saturday, Chloë and I did something absolutely magical. With the exception of wearing masks, we pretty much got to forget about the pandemic as we did something that at times over the past two years, I wondered if we’d ever get the chance to do (dramatic, I know). We went to Disney On Ice!
We went to the 3pm show (there was also an 11am show and a 3pm show on this particular day, as well) and ended up making a lunch reservation at one of the restaurants in the venue for 1pm, so we were already inside and steps away from the merchandise and snack booths when the doors opened at 2pm. An additional bonus was that we weren’t standing outside in the cold. Apparently the lines were ridiculous and very slow.
As great as it was to beat the lines, the most important part about this lunch reservation was that Chloë loved every second of it and I loved getting even more one-on-one time with her. It was especially nice because our lunch date gave me a time to hear everything Chloë had to say. I think it took her a good 20 minutes after the show started to realize we couldn’t hear each other.
Chloë ordered a basket of fries and an ice water, and much to my surprise, she enjoyed watching basketball on the nearby television. She had a lot of questions about the game and thankfully, wasn’t too upset that I didn’t have any answers.
After lunch, Chloë got to go to the merchandise booth to pick out a treat from Grammie and Grumpie. She chose an orange princess cat. Neither of us actually recognize this character, I couldn’t tell you what movie or show she’s from, but as soon as Chloë saw her, she knew that was the stuffed animal she wanted. Chloë has since named her ‘Palace’ and also thinks she’s a squirrel cat because of her fluffy tail.
One of the funniest moments of the day was when I told Chloë that Grammie and Grumpie had sent her money to pick out a treat and after she expressed her happiness about that, she blurts out, “And Uncle Kevin got me the tickets!” How do kids come up with this stuff?
So, with our arms loaded absolutely loaded with merchandise and snacks, we made our way to our seats and had about 45 minutes to just sit and wait for the show to start. I was a little worried that Chloë was going to get bored and fidgety, but she did absolutely amazing. At this point, the volume of the music was still low enough that we could talk and she was just taking everything in.
Chloë had her choice of light up wands – she could either do Mickey ears or a Frozen snowflake and she chose the Mickey ears.
Chloë wore her beautiful Elsa dress that her Grandma made her. One of our snacks came with a foam crown which Chloë insisted we take turns wearing, and another snack came with a foam Olaf hat which neither of us got a picture of, but Otis is desperate to get this hands on.
Chloë didn’t realize that the kid behind us had a bubble wand, she thought the random bubbles were part of the Disney magic. She was pretty disappointed when they came to an abrupt end. I’m sure the kid behind us was more disappointed – after all, he broke his bubble wand. And I can’t even imagine how his mother felt after paying $65 for the thing!
Chloë tried popcorn for the first time, as well as cotton candy and a snow cone. The popcorn came with the Mickey Mouse bucket seen above, the cotton candy came with the previously mentioned foam hats and the snow cone was in a Dory cup. While she didn’t dislike any of the food, except maybe the snow cone, she ate very little and was much more focused on what it came with.
When we arrived at the venue for our lunch reservation, the 11am show was just letting out and we saw over a hundred kids throwing some of the biggest tantrums I’ve ever seen. There were kids literally being dragged out by their parents. So, I mentally prepared myself that there might be tears. And tears there were… when the show began and the lights started flashing and an instrumental version of “When You Wish Upon A Star” started playing, I teared up. As for Chloë, I cannot say this enough – she was absolutely amazing.
We saw Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, tons of Disney princesses, as well as characters from Finding Dory, Toy Story, Frozen and Moana. Early in the show, Buzz Lightyear took a little fall, which Chloë noticed and she simply reminded me, “He’s a toy… he can’t really fly.”
I don’t think I was worried that Chloë would be afraid of the characters, but I had a suspicion that Disney would have some special effects that could be startling (I was right) and I didn’t know how she’d react. Thanks to Covid, she had never seen fireworks until this show. She wasn’t bothered at all. At one point there was a fire on the ice and the only reason she even mentioned it was because she was hoping a fire truck from another show she watches would make an appearance.
Chloë has easily thanked me 45 times by now for taking her to Disney On Ice. The next morning, she said she was ready to go back and I really think she thought that was an option. She’s also told me that she thinks she’s ready to see the Disney World castle now. And after spending an afternoon with her at Disney On Ice, I agree, she’s definitely ready for Disney World, but I think we need to let the pandemic wind down just a bit more before I’m willing to venture to Orlando!