OK, everyone's sleeping already, so here they are:
OK, everyone's sleeping already, so here they are:
Love the updates!!! Central Ohio is so boring this evening!!!
Lou, great reports! And I just did a Google News search under all topics Disney, no news on what happened. It is sad to have those things happen to a family. My prayers are with them for what they had and have to go through.
You ate at the Tusker House, man, that is my favorite at DAK! LOL, I just remembered that My Dad, Step-Mom & Step-Sis are over in orlando as well when you mentioned the storms. I tried to convince them that Disney would be a better place for a 5 year old, but they wanted to stay at Universal (sorry, I am not a Universal fan. Bad times there, and I have not had good service when I have been. Plus, I must be loyal to the company in which I have stock & love). It looks like some of the entries are not you writing, or you felt like writing in 3rd person, lol. I wish I could get a chance to use that Extra Magic Hours, though, every time I am staying there, I go to the park without the extra magic hours. Again, it awesome to see that you all are having fun at the happiest place on earth!
Wow Lou - even with breaks, you are hitting the highlights. Sounds like the perfect family trip. And a kid that will sleep through fireworks, you must be blessed!!
Can't wait to hear more. Oh, and I like the matching Mickey shirts - big thumbs up! http://www.disneyworldtrivia.com/for.../2thumbsup.gif
Very cool updates (minus the horrible drowning, very sad). Thanks for keeping us posted!
Cool thing with mickey lou! LOL
I can't wait to see the review of the ride revamped! It opens up this weekend doesn't it?
I believe it opens back up on the 7th? not sure though
I know fr sure that in DLR it opened up after the premire last night I thought WDW might go along the same lines.
Cool report, Lou! Can't wait to go myself in October. The big cheese recognized you! Wow! Smart move to take those breaks. I've seen way too many kids go through a melt-down after a couple of straight days of excitement. Wishing you cool thoughts.
Hey Lou -
Still thinking about you and your family - glad you are having a good time! I completely understand the need for 'naps' in the afternoons! Even though we took them my 3 year old niece still had her melt downs throughout the week! I also understand the heat as it was 95 or higher when we were there a couple of weeks ago.
I thought Spoodles was REALLY good when we were there as well! My whole family LOVED it!
Keep up the fun reports - It is hard to believe I was there just 2 weeks ago so the reports help keep me in my happy place!
DAY FIVE – SUNDAY, JUNE 25
Today is the day… Yes, we will be among the very first to partake is Disney's newest character experience – Play and Dine at Hollywood and Vine at the Disney-MGM Studios. Our reservations were for 8:20, but we arrived at the gate at around 8 am, and after checking our name off a list, were allowed entrance to the park. Us and… well.. really no one else! We had all of Hollywood Blvd. to ourselves! It was pretty amazing, and a great photo op (pic to be posted soon!)
We went to H&V and checked in. Moments later, we were brought in and met by about a dozen Cast Member waitresses and a standee welcoming us into the Playhouse Disney-themed breakfast. Only about 1/3 of the restaurant was open, and we were stead on the left hand side. There were only about 10-12 tables in service. The number of Lead CMs on hand was very noticeable – at least 7-10.
Let's get the easy stuff out of the way – the breakfast buffet is typical Disney fare: eggs, breakfast meats, cereal, corned beef hash, potatoes, Mickey waffles, etc. Pretty good and ideal fuel for the day. Keep the high-test coffee, coming, toots!! I'm in need of caffeine!!
OK, now onto the good stuff. I won't get overly mushy here, but this was one of the highlights of my trip. Those of you familiar with Playhouse Disney will recognize the names JoJo, Goliath, and Leo and June from the Little Einsteins. Well, we had them almost all to ourselves. There were also two "Playhouse Pals" – singing and dancing friends of the Playhouse Disney characters who lead everyone in song and dance. To say that Marion had a wonderful time is an understatement. I don't think I even ate, as I was snapping photos and video as fast as I could, trying to capture this truly magical moments. The hugs, smiles and bright eyes were…. Eessssh… so much for not getting sappy, Lou. L Anyway, I highly recommend this for you and your pre-schooler!
Oh, and I also had the pleasure of meeting a Podperson in line! Hiya Jeremy!!! (You ran off too quickly - I looked for you to give you a pin but you were gone by the time I had finished taking pictures) :(
From there, we hit a near-empty Playhouse Disney to stay in the mood. BTW, kudos to the very cute CM host, whose name I forget. Nice job! J
Voyage of the Little Mermaid was down, so no FASTPASS or entrance at that time. We shopped in the little Princess store nearby, then headed to the Great Movie Ride. Sadly, we had a less-than-perfect CM with an audio system that was… well... inaudible. C'est la vie – can't win 'em all.
We headed back down Mickey Avenue for some more photo ops with Quincy from the Little Einsteins, as well as a visit with Sorcerer Mickey. Marion wanted to go through the Bug's Life play area for a bit while I watched a sleeping Nicolas (who snored his way through the loud entrance and exit of the Power Rangers meet and greet nearby.
I hit Rock n Roller coaster and then it was time to head back to the room to get out of the heat and give the kids a much-needed rest and nap before our big dinner. That's right – we had a hot date with 4 Disney princesses!
We bobbed and weaved our way through the raindrops (i.e. torrential downpour) from the International Gateway to Norway, where we met Tim Devine (you know, the Disney photo guy http://timdevine-disney.blogspot.com/)and his family for dinner with the gals. We had a wonderful meal, chatted with the ladies a bit, took some less-than-incriminating photos of daddy with his favorites, and made our way to Beaches and Cream for a fat-and-calorie-and-carb-free "No Way Jose'", and Mickey Sundae for Marion. Oh yeah, speaking of food and the kids – on this trip, my 11 month old son (who weights the same as his 2 ½ year old sister), "graduated" from formula and jarred baby food to milk, steak, potatoes, pasta… yeah. Poor kid is just withering away. LOL
My mind wanted to go to the Magic Kingdom to take advantage of the Extra Magic Hours, but my body said no. Tomorrow was our last day, and I needed to be ready for the day, and joys of packing, lugging stuff through the airport… yada yada yada
DAY SIX – MONDAY, JUNE 26
Oh why oh why does this day have to come?? Time to go home, unfortunately. We thought of staying another day, but duty calls us both at work, so we packed up and got ready to go. We wet to the Innkeeper's Club one last time for breakfast and checked out right there. We also made one last dining reservation for lunch at the Liberty Tree tavern (cheaper than the original plan to go tot Downtown Disney, which could have gotten scary).
We took the ferry over (a fortuitous trip, as I was able to get an answer to a trivia question that was bugging me for some time… you'll have to wait for Volume II for that one! J), and made our way one last time into the Magic Kingdom. While standing "right down the middle of Main Street, USA", I ran into my old pal, Scoop Sanderson. If ya don't know, Scoop hold daily pin talks on Main Street and is quite a "character". While taking his picture, he noticed my question mark logo pin. He quickly went from asking what it was to recognizing it and me, and thanked me for the book and pin I sent him. (I don't recall the CM that gave me his info and asked to send him a book a while back). Anyway, we got to talking a bit, and I felt really great as he complimented me on the book and pin design. Some "off-duty" CMs came over, heard us talking about the book, and they went on to say that they like it as well! That really gives me such a good feeling to know that CMs are enjoying it!!! One took the opportunity to try and "stump me" (uh oh.. Lou hates that, since if I get it wrong, I lose all credibility). Luckily, I was able to get it right (it was about some of the stones in the Haunted Mansion graveyard), and was able to test them a bit and teach him about the Toad in the pet cemetery. Scoop then gave me two of the three pins right off his vest! One was a gold Key to the Magic Kingdom, and the other was a "Behind the Steam Trains Tour" pin. We had a great time (thanks again, Scoop!) chatting for a while, but the kids were ready to go, and time was a wastin'!
We all rode Aladdin together, and were just in time to catch Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate training in Caribbean Plaza. I think it was really fun show, and I was pleasantly surprised at how good the Jack Sparrow character was – the voice, mannerisms, etc., were all right on. A rousing chorus of "Yo Ho" by everyone watching concluded the show (but Lou couldn't snag one of the scrolls the young pirates received. Arrrrgh matey).
It was pretty hot and everyone was hungry, so we headed to Liberty Tree Tavern to get in to lunch early with Tim and his family. The food was as "comfortable" and delicious as usual. I had the "Tri-Corner" roast beef sandwich, while everyone else had the Pilgrim's Feast.
Sadly, it was almost time to head out to the airport, so we went down to the Emporium to do some quick shopping before we left. But wait! What's that?! It sounds like SpectroMagic is starting, so we're going to hang out a while.
We got to the monorail station just as it began to downpo… no… more like monsoon. So we rode the Express to and from the MK 3 times before venturing out to our car. In the interim, Continental had called and said the flight was delayed. If it wasn't for work commitments, we were going to stay the night. But, alas, reality called and it was off to MCO, where our 5:45 flight was held until 6:30, then to 73:30, then back to 6:30. We boarded at 6:30, took off at 8:20 and landed at almost 11. A nice little bomb scare in Terminal C at Newark Liberty held our bags until about 1:00 a.m. Let's not get into me not finding my car for a while... Next thing ya know, we're home at 2:00. Deanna hit the laundry room after dropping the kids into bed, and next thing you know, here I am… at work… sad… and clearly not working.
Sad to be home, but with a smile on my face, recalling one of the happiest and most memorable vacations to Walt Disney World.
Oh wait!!!!… I TOTALLY forgot about this (along with all the great character meet and greet stories, but I've gone on long enough)!! I bought a whole bunch of cheap pins on eBay to for Marion to try and trade with CMs (OK, I could also trade for ones that I might like, too). I showed her how on our second or third day there, giving her one and bringing her over to a CM. Well, needless to say, she was hooked!! Every time she saw a CM with a yellow lanyard, she pointed and asked mommy and daddy if she could trade a pin. She would walk over, pin in hand, and point to the ones she likes. Oddly enough, she even has a certain style of pin she likes! No, really! She seems drawn to the "baby" characters – the small faces of characters that look like baby versions of themselves. I'll have to take a picture of her lanyard to prove it. Congratulations, Disney – another pin trader is born.
So, with this trip behind us, only one question remains…. When are we going again???!
Nope, I think the one question is ......when are you taking us with you? That was so cute about the little princess. Kids catch on so quick to the oddest things. LOL I was tearing up at some parts of your reports. Thanks for keeping us informed so we can live vicariously thru you. :-D
Wow what a great trip! Thanks for sharing with us, it's almost as good as being there. What is the Pirate class you saw, is it just until POTC reopens or will it be around for awhile? We'll be going sometime next month and I know Brian would love to be a pirate.
Oh, you make me miss it Lou. When is there going to be a trivia-wide organized trip? that would be sooo much fun.