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Trip Reports & Member Reviews Discuss My Birthday Trip Report in the Vacation Planning forums; Hey everyone!! I returned from WDW on Monday, but I've been too busy to type my report until now. I went to see Enchanted today, and I was sad, but ...
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    hillo's Avatar
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    My Birthday Trip Report

    Hey everyone!! I returned from WDW on Monday, but I've been too busy to type my report until now. I went to see Enchanted today, and I was sad, but excited, to see the castle on the big screen. I would love to be back down there right now. Anyway... now to begin.

    A little backstory... I wanted to go on my birthday last year, but I wasn't able to work it out. Also, my birthday was on Thanksgiving day last year, so I would have had to go around my birthday, but not on my birthday. My mom and I worked everything out to go, so we went down on my birthday (Nov 23) and returned Monday. Back in September, I booked the 3 night stay in a standard room at All-Star Movies. It would be $99 a night, even though Nov 25 was technically in value season. My stay began during regular season, so the entire trip had to be in regular season pricing. No worries, it was only $20 more. A couple of weeks later and I found an offer for cheaper rooms. Each night could be a different price, so Fri and Sat would be $89 and Sun would be $69. We were so excited. That discount code saved us $50!! On Nov 20, 3 days before we left, I receive an email thanking me for choosing the WDW resort and that my room would be $89 a night. I didn't understand why it would randomly change to charge us $20 more. I was going to wait until we checked in, but I thought it would save us some time if I went ahead and called to work things out. The lady on the phone was very nice, but couldn't figure out how to fix the problem. I spent 30 minutes on the phone, and the manager finally concluded that it changed price when I asked for a preferred room. What?!? I told the lady that I was staring at my paper and it said standard room. The lady answers that my reservation says preferred room, and sure enough the new reservation that I was sent on Tuesday said preferred. I decided to wait until we arrived, because I could show them my paper that proved I booked a standard room. It wasn't worth $20 to spend more time on the phone.

    I didn't really think about the problem any more until we checked in. At check in, the guy seemed nervous and new, but we go ahead and tell him the problem when he says we have a preferred room. (I received my birthday button at this time.) He says we have a comp upgrade to a preferred room. YAY! But is it really complimentary? He looks at our paper and can tell the prices don't match, so he goes to his manager. We seem him talking to someone for 15 minutes or so and then he finally returns and says that the main computer system actually has us at a cheaper price, so they would give us a cheaper rate. WOW!! Talk about birthday magic!! I know we didn't get a night in the castle, but we were upgraded to a preferred room and given a lower price. We stayed in the Fantasia building, just a few yards from the lobby, for $80 a night after tax on the day after Thanksgiving (regular season). We were so excited and very hungry. Our reservations for Boma were in one hour...
    Last edited by hillo; 12-01-2007 at 09:33 PM.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












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    lilo88 is offline DisneyWorldTrivia.com Lifetime Pass
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    Wow sounds interesting so far. Glad you got the room at a cheaper price. Were trying to go for my Birthday next year on NOV 15th. Can't wait to hear the rest!
    Tiffany~ºoº ~ D23 member

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    hillo's Avatar
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    Our plan for my birthday was to eat at Boma and then visit the MK hotels, so we could ride the monorail and watch Wishes and the Electrical Water Pageant. Our meal at Boma was absolutely amazing. I have eaten there once before and really liked it, but that visit paled in comparison to my birthday visit. All the food was wonderful. We ate until we honestly couldn't put another piece of food in our mouths. I loved the dessert plate they gave me that said Happy 17th Birthday Hillary. It was a nice touch for it to be personalized. I ate some of the gummi bears and a brownie while my mom ate the other brownie and attempted to scrape of the chocolate on the plate. I tasted the cookies, but didn't eat them, because I wanted the other desserts. I hated that I didn't have room for another zebra dome. The other highlights were: Pumpkin pie (on the Holiday menu, we didn't know there was a holiday surcharge until a couple of days before our trip, we didn't mind though, because the food was amazing and I'm so glad I spent my birthday there. Another note: I was just glad to see the Pumpkin pie even though it wasn't any better than my grandmother's), zebra domes, pineapple upside-down cheesecake, crab soup, lamb stew, pork with pineapple relish, prime rib, salmon, and couscous Marrakesh. I had two bowls of the crab soup. It was delicious! I was also excited to try the butternut squash soup, but I wasn't impressed by it.
    We waddled our way out of Boma and into the gift shop. We managed to leave without buying anything.
    Our original plan was to take the bus to the MK and then the monorail to the resorts. We didn't want to risk the crowds at the MK, so drove to the Polynesian and took the monorail around. My mom bought me socks at the Poly. They were knee-hi with Mickey ears. I know it may sound silly, but I was very happy to get them, because I could wear them to school to brighten up my day and uniform. There wasn't many holiday decorations at the Poly, but the Grand Floridian was a different story. It was beautiful in the lobby. I loved the gingerbread house and the enormous tree. I bought a shingle from the house and ate some on the way home and gave the rest to my brother. I was ok. Goofy's Candy Company has better gingerbread cookies. We shopped around there while everyone wished me a Happy Birthday. Next was the Contemporary. I don't care for the theming of this resort. I have ridden through it many times, but I had never stepped inside it. I liked the fun new gift shop that had just opened that day. It carried mostly toys and the like. Their other gift shop, Bayview Gifts, is the best resort gift shop I have been in. It had an assortment of everything. We saw several things we wanted there, but decided to wait and buy them later, preferably in the MK.
    It was 15 minutes until 9 and we didn't want to waste time at the Contemporary, so we went ahead and boarded the crowded monorail and headed back to the Poly. Wishes began while we were on the monorail, but we didn't miss much. We headed outside to the pool area where the music was being piped in. I loved the view we had, right in front of the castle, and I was so happy to see the fireworks on my birthday. We had hoped to see the electrical water pageant, but since it was at the same time as Wishes, we saw it go by, but the lights weren't on. I was only slightly disappointed. I would have liked to have seen it, but I preferred my free viewing of the fireworks. We then left to return to our resort.

    Next up... 4 parks in one day!! Are we crazy? (Wait.. don't answer that.)
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












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    Cinderella2 is offline Thrilled to know there are others who sparkle!
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    Sounds like great fun so far. I would love to enjoy some crab soup right now.
    Dreams Really Do Come True

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    hillo's Avatar
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    I usually write way too much when typing a trip report, so I will try to condense our 19 hour day on Saturday. We had a blast as always. We started our day at MGM's EMH and headed straight for Tower of Terror. I was going to pick up fastpasses, but the line for fastpasses was longer than the wait for the ride. We rode and then I was going to ride Rock 'n Roller Coaster in the single riders line or grab fastpasses. The FP line just to get the FP there was longer than TOT's line, so I walked away after not moving in the line for about 3 minutes. The single-rider line was not operating. My mom couldn't ride TOT again so soon, so I grabbed FP, and we headed to One Man's Dream. I have only been in there once before, and I didn't have a lot of time to look around. I was happy to spend some more time to see everything. We knew we weren't going to watch the movie again, so we left out of another exit. It was 5 minutes until the first showing of The Little Mermaid, so we walked briskly to the theater. I was afraid they would close the door at any moment, so we asked to walk through the FP line, and they said we could especially since it was my birthday. (I wore my birthday button all 3 days.) We watched the show, and then it was 5 minutes until our FPs for TOT, so walked on to TOT. By the time we got there, It was our FP time by my watch, but their clock said another 3 minutes, but he let us in anyway. We really didn't need the FP, because no one was in the other line. After our ride, we headed to AK. The first thing was grab a FP for EE. I then waited 10 minutes in the single rider line. We were going to head to Dinosaur, but I decided I would rather see FOTLK. It was great as always. I had never seen the sign language interpreters performing for anyone before. And they were a performance unto themselves. I had to force myself to look away and watch the actual show. I think it's great how Disney accommodates for guests with special needs.

    It was noon, and I was getting hungry. We were thinking about eating at Yak and Yeti, but we hadn't made a decision yet. I finally decided that I wanted to try it, and I knew that we wouldn't have to wait in a long fast food line. I said that if the wait was short, we would eat there. They could seat us immediately. We knew we wanted to split something, and I'm glad we did. We got a side of egg rolls and duck. Our server brought the egg rolls as an appetizer, and they were the best egg rolls I have ever had. The server kept checking to see if we had received our entree. It took our entree about 35 minutes after sitting down to get there. We weren't too concerned, because it was a nice break in the day. The duck was very good. It was easy to eat after pulling the bone out. It cut like chicken. The rice and vegetables on the side were just fine. I enjoyed the meal, but I wouldn't get the duck again. I would definitely get the egg rolls again. We then rode EE and headed to Epcot.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












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    At Epcot, I wanted to spend a lot of time in the World Showcase, because we never do. My mom was a little queasy after the ride on EE, so we stopped at Club Cool so she could get free ginger ale. The tip board said Soarin' had a 105 minute and the FPs were given out for most rides, so we decided to check out the Epcot musuem and head on to WS. I really enjoyed the museum. I remember a lot about the attractions represented in there, even though I was very young when those things were closed or removed. I loved hearing the music from the old attractions, because I have heard the songs on Lou's podcast. In WS, I wanted chocolate mousse from France, and I wanted to see the holiday storytellers. We saw the WS players, which we loved, and then I got my chocolate mousse and saw France's storyteller, Pere Noel. I wasn't impressed with him, so I wasn't very enthusiastic about the other storytellers. I'm glad I still gave them a try!! I loved all the other storytellers! I saw the ones in Germany, Mexico, Morocco, and my favorite was in Norway. That was very fun and something different from any other trip. We stopped in at the first Candlelight Processional at 5:30pm. We walked in about 10 minutes before the show and had a pretty nice seat. After a few songs, we left to see the tree-lighting ceremony. I wasn't impressed with CP. I'm glad they do it, because it's a way of sharing the Christmas story. I'm also glad they read Luke 2 and didn't change the wording. The music was great and so was the narrator, but I have seen better performances at my church with our choir. I'm glad we stopped in on the CP, since we hadn't planned to do it. I enjoy hearing our choir sing the same songs, so I would rather do something else while at WDW. I loved the tree-lighting event, especially since we sang Silent Night to light the tree. I wanted something to eat after that and I didn't want anything sweet, so we stopped in Morocco's Tangierine Cafe. We got one plate of chicken and lamb to share. The chicken was great and the lamb was out of this world good. The sides were nothing special. I would love to get the lamb again, but I would like to ask for different sides. Later that night, I had a wonderful Mickey bar before Illuminations. The holiday tribute at the end was amazing. We left the park while watching the Fountain of Nations perform Joy to the World and headed to the MK by monorail.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












  7. #7
    StarsNStripes's Avatar
    StarsNStripes is offline 40th was amazing!
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    O my goodness Girlfriend! And I thought I moved fast. What a whirlwind day!
    I'm about as All-American as they come!
    *Natalie*
    Must get a new trip on the books! I'm dyin' here!

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    hillo's Avatar
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    It was after 10pm and the MK closed at 12am, so we didn't have a lot of time left. I knew I wanted to ride the updated HM, so we headed there first. I enjoyed the updates. We also rode IASW and walked on Splash Mountain without a wait. Everyone in my log was drenched. I don't know how it happened, but a huge wave of water hit our log. In the picture, everyone is already ducking. It looked as if we had just taken a shower in our clothes. We shopped our way out of the MK way past midnight, but waited to buy everything for the next night.

    ***************Spoiler Alert*****************
    (HM updates)










    I wanted to share my thoughts on the updated HM. The sound is much better. I really enjoyed the new pictures that change when the lightening flashes. I liked Master Gracey's voice floating around the room at the beginning. I didn't understand what he said after they showed him hanging there, because everyone started talking after the room went dark both times I rode it. The first time, the CM had to keep asking everyone to be quiet. I didn't really understand the new staircase sequence. I didn't see the point. I loved the new attic bride seen. I wish you could see the bride longer, but it does make you want to ride it again and again so you can catch everything she says. I loved her headless husbands. I thought that was an awesome effect. I can't say that I liked the new Leota floating, head because I could easily she the device lifting it up and down. Maybe I just have really good eyesight, but watching the cord lift it up and down was all I could focus on in that scene. Also, my mom and I could the camera that was projecting her face.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












  9. #9
    hillo's Avatar
    hillo is offline Walt Disney World here I come!!!.... again
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    On Sunday, we had tickets for MVMCP. We decided to sleep in and spend some time at the other resorts before heading to the party. We went to DD to have lunch at Earl of Sandwich. We split the Ultimate Grilled Cheese. It was delicious!! We shopped around some, scouted out what we wanted to buy the next day, and then hopped on a bus for the Epcot resorts.

    We weren't sure which one we would get off at, we just knew we wanted to go to Beaches and Cream. We hopped off at the Yacht Club and enjoyed their Christmas decorations. They had a lovely model train. I thought the atmosphere of the YC was a little too stiff for my liking. We walked on over to the BC. I loved their chocolate carousel. We had trouble finding Beaches and Cream, but once we saw a better map, we made it there easily. They said it would be a 30-40 minute wait, but we had been prepared for that. We walked into the arcade next door, I had fun on Ms Pac-man and then we played air hockey. The buzzer went off while we were playing air hockey, so we had to hurry and finish our game. I won 7-4. We planned to just get ice cream at Beaches and Cream. I didn't even think my mom would get anything, but she surprised and ordered a No Way Jose and a nostalgia Coke. I had been planning on a No Way Jose for months. Needless to say, we both enjoyed it tremendously. My mom didn't care for the Coke though. She has told everyone about the No Way Jose. We had so much fun there. She was telling my grandmother about it today, and my grandmother wanted to know why she had never been. We were both full and didn't buy anything else the night. (We were finished eating around 2pm. That shows you how big that thing was. We did however have hot chocolate, cookies, apple juice, and apple slices that night, but not very many.)

    We shopped our way around the Boardwalk. We weren't going to go into their lobby, but I'm so glad we did. The lobby was gorgeous. It would have been beautiful even without the wonderful Christmas decorations. We continued to shop around, accidentally walk into Spoodles, and walk to Epcot's back door. That was really neat. We could hear them beating the drums in Japan. We contemplated a way to sneak in, but decided against it. We then took the ferry back to the Boardwalk and then took a bus to the MK. We arrived right at 4pm and were surprised to see that so many people knew you could go ahead and enter the MK for the party. They were already giving away wristbands and had an entire side devoted to party attendees. We walked on in and went straight to Buzz Lightyear and walked right on. I finally got to see all of Dream Along with Mickey. I have tried to watch that show twice now - one time I missed the beginning, another time it was canceled after the Princess part because of a storm in the distance. We headed back to Buzz (with a slightly longer wait), TTA, and grab a FP for Space Mountain. I was surprised that I could use by party ticket for a FP. I wished they would have started giving out the hot cocoa and cookies early, but I knew that they couldn't. I wanted some at this time, but I didn't mind waiting.

    We saw the castle lighting ceremony which was very cute. I then rode Space Mountain and caught the end of the fireworks. We rode Pooh, Snow White, Mickey's Philharmagic. It was then time for the first Mickey's Twas the Night Before Christmas show. It was standing room only, but I really wanted to see the show and we had great spots where I could see, so we decided to stay so that we wouldn't have to work it in later. I really enjoyed the show. It's one of my favorites. It was finally time for apple juice and slices. I went back for cocoa, so I could sip it during the castle stage show. We got goodies at different times during the night, and I was very happy to see special event merchandise. We saw Holiday Wishes which was the most amazing fireworks show I have ever seen. We had our picture taken several times, mostly after the park closed because of the 40% off discount. We also rode Pirates of the Caribbean (please enforce no flash photography again!), Big Thunder (after we saw the parade from Frontierland), IASW, and Peter Pan (which we thought we were going to miss this trip). There was a book I wanted from the Pirates store, so we had to hurry back over there. It was 12:05am and we heard them saying, "Last call for Pirates." How could we pass that up? It was also our ticket into the store to grab my book. We enjoyed the last ride of the night (second time I have done that on Pirates) and bought my book and two MVMCP picture frames. We headed through on empty Adventureland and had our pictures made on Main Street.

    There was a few items I wanted from the Emporium, but I noticed they had already shut the doors. My mom wanted to take pictures, so she walked off while I went to the Emporium. When someone walked out, I grabbed the door and walked in. I'm so glad I did because later when my mom attempted to enter in the front, they wouldn't let her in. She told them she was looking for her daughter. They firmly told her she could not enter and that I would have to exit through the door she was standing at. She then said, "But I have the money." So they let her in. We found each other and made our purchases. I couldn't decide if I wanted the snowman ornament, so I left without him. I had grown attached to the cute snowman in the Mickey ears. As we walked on out, my mom wanted to check and see if they had the hat she wanted at the locker rental. They didn't, but they did have the ornament. I couldn't pass it up when I saw it again. I did pass on the t-shirts though. Unfortunately, they didn't have a couple of things my mom wanted from the Contemporary, so we were going to check DD the next day and if they didn't have the stuff, we were going to have to return to the Contemporary. We took a private bus back to our resort while I fought to stay awake. We were in the bed at 2am.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












  10. #10
    nicki12's Avatar
    nicki12 is offline Disney Fan and Twilighter
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    Sounds like fuN!

    Nicole a.k.a. nicki12 ~ a Navy daughter
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    "All your dreams can come true, if you have the courage to pursue them" - Walt Disney

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    hillo's Avatar
    hillo is offline Walt Disney World here I come!!!.... again
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    And now the conclusion...
    We woke up a little later on Monday and left the resort around 10:30am. We headed to DD to finish our shopping. I ate half of a make your own rice krispy treat for breakfast/snack. We had lunch at Earl of Sandwich again today. We had the chicken florentine and holiday special turkey sandwich with turkey, cranberries, and stuffing. Both were amazing. We ate half a sandwich a piece. I only wish the turkey sandwich had more stuffing, because the stuffing was very good. There was an ornament that we wanted to get my brother and his fiancee that I saw on Sunday. The ornament was sold out on Monday. We couldn't believe it. My mom was more disappointed than I was. I knew we would find another ornament sometime. Also, there was a picture frame we wanted from WOD, and they didn't have it Monday. The worker said they were sold out. I couldn't believe they sold out of two things we wanted so quickly. Right before we left WOD, I so happened to spot the frame in a different place. We were so excited. We have been looking for frames we liked for a long time, and we finally found some we loved. None of the stores at DD had a mug my mom wanted so we drove to the Contemporary to pick it up. My mom told them she knew exactly what she wanted, so they pointed us to the 30 minute parking, and we were able to park closer. Unfortunately, we came out with more than the mug. My mom also saw a hat that she had intended to get at the MK, but the stores were closing when we left, and the Emporium didn't carry it. Also, they had a blanket with the snowman in Mickey ears that I had fallen in love with. So we bought that too. He was supposed to be $15 for with a $50 purchase. Technically, gift cards don't count, but my mom was buying gift cards for my brother and for his and his fiancee together for their honeymoon at Disney next year. Since the merchandise total was over $40 , and she was buying over $50 in gift cards, the CM let us buy the blanket. I was very excited. I haven't used it yet, but I will soon enough.

    Thanks for reading my report. If you have any questions about anything we did, feel free to ask. I hope this provided information for your next Disney vacation, or that it at least allowed you to experience WDW vicariously through me.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












  12. #12
    princessariel's Avatar
    princessariel is offline Fastpass Holder
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    Sounds like y'all had a BLAST!
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  13. #13
    StarsNStripes's Avatar
    StarsNStripes is offline 40th was amazing!
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    Great Report Hillary!
    I'm about as All-American as they come!
    *Natalie*
    Must get a new trip on the books! I'm dyin' here!

  14. #14
    hillo's Avatar
    hillo is offline Walt Disney World here I come!!!.... again
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    Thanks! We had a wonderful time. Once again, I can't wait to go back.
    - Hillary
    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.- Walt Disney












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