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Old 01-12-2019, 06:58 PM   #11
JudieHopps
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Following!
I knew you were there...I just thought maybe you were to busy with your new job for a report.
You truly have a happy energy family!

Loving it and the pics!
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Old 01-12-2019, 07:48 PM   #12
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Off to a tremendous start! Ugh on that no hot water, not fun at all.


Looking forward to much more.


Hope our paths cross again soon!
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Old 01-12-2019, 09:28 PM   #13
disneymomof2
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Following along....

Thanks for taking the time to do a TR. They seem fewer and far between these days.
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Old 01-12-2019, 10:37 PM   #14
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Thanks all for following along. I had planned on a TR for my October to trip with mom, but I looked around on one of our first days and realized I really just wanted to enjoy it. I did not want to worry about pictures or remembering what we did. We rarely get time with just the two of us, I just relaxed and enjoyed it. This trip, we did so much and managed to keep it at an easy pace that I took lots of pictures to share.
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Old 01-12-2019, 10:43 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by MamaB24 View Post
Thanks all for following along. I had planned on a TR for my October to trip with mom, but I looked around on one of our first days and realized I really just wanted to enjoy it. I did not want to worry about pictures or remembering what we did. We rarely get time with just the two of us, I just relaxed and enjoyed it. This trip, we did so much and managed to keep it at an easy pace that I took lots of pictures to share.

Looking forward to your report......I need to get back to mine, after the rude interruption of all the Disney news this past week.
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Old 01-12-2019, 11:15 PM   #16
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Default Park Day Number One: Epcot & Candlelight Processional

We managed to get back from Ft. Wilderness and into bed at a decent time. I slept well after driving overnight the night before. Woke up without hot water again...ah well. It's really hard to be patient when it's the hot water that is missing.

During our first Christmas trip a few years ago, we did the Candlelight Processional. I enjoyed it, but I think I was so worried about our plans at that point that I missed part of the magic. This time through, I booked a couple of dining packages until I figured out which day we were going to attend and canceled the one we would not use. Initially we had booked Rose and Crown for lunch, but I switched it to breakfast in order to free up the rest of the day for some rides and World Showcase meandering. By the time I switched the reservation, the only restaurant left was Ale & Compass. I had not really heard a good review there, but I was willing to give it a try. As always, if you go in with lower expectations, you may be pleasantly surprised.

We had a split reservation for 8:45 and 9:25, so we all loaded up into the van and drove over, arriving by 8:40. The hostess was kind enough to merge our parties, but it meant waiting until the 9:25 time slot. No worries on that part as there were so many decorations to admire. We started at Yacht Club, looking at the train and then headed over to Beach Club for the gingerbread carousel. We had the wheelchair with us as we were going to head straight to the parks, so Nana was able to enjoy all of the holiday decor as well.











They called us promptly at 9:25, and I admit to being most pleased with the decor and seating at Ale & Compass. I jokingly told our waitress that I may need to order my own set of the tables and chairs for home. For those of you who have not been, the tables at which we sat were definitely vertically friendly. With a rather tall family, most of us sat more comfortably than normal for the meal. The meal for the CP included the buffet and an entree, so we all ordered and then headed for the buffet. The buffet was simple but adequate. I would not rate it up by the Wave for breakfast buffets, but I would say it was better than a regular TS buffet. As far as entrees, the girls tried the chocolate waffles, DS (13) apple french toast, and the rest of us ate the flank steak and eggs. By far the winner was the steak and eggs. The plates were pretty, and I think the menu attempts to make more complex or fancier choices with decent execution. Unfortunately, the chocolate waffles were more dark chocolate and bitter, and the french toast tasted like apple pie. Those three entrees were not well attended. Instead, they opted for return trips to the buffet.








I will also mention that the listed prices for the CP were not accurate. The initial charge was the listed price, but Disney added an upcharge for the package which was not advertised. Not surprising, but it left me feeling like they dug a bit deeper into my pocket while I looked the other way.

From breakfast, we headed over to Epcot. The boys had FPs for Test Track, and Waldo, Nana, the girls, and I rode Soarin'. We managed to get the middle-middle row, so there was no distortion. That row is acutally my favorite. From there, we waited in line for Living with the Land. I think it may have been a 15 minute wait. I enjoyed the decorations here as well...





From The Land, we met the boys over at Figment...still a favorite of Lil' Bear and Gigantor. We had FPs for Mission Space that we ended up not using, but Nana and I rode Spaceship Earth while the rest headed for Pixar Shorts. This was my first experience with a true wheelchair, meaning Nana stayed in it until we were ready to board. We used the accessible entrances, and I came to appreciate all that Disney does to help accommodate people who have mobility issues. It was nice, too, to get a last ride in on Spaceship Earth before the reported big renovation. After these rides, we decided it was time to head to World Showcase.

Waldo and the kiddos picked up the Chip and Dale Christmas wreath hunt map and started in Canada. I was on the verge of hangry, so Nana and I picked up fish and chips from the Fish Shop and found a table to wait for everyone else....oh and a beer from the Rose & Crown. We ate and did some window shopping and wreath hunting, making it through to Germany. We were not on the dining plan yet, and I felt like every time I turned around I heard, "I'm hungry," and dropped another $100. It was a bit painful.






We had tickets to the 6:45pm CP, and we wandered over to the dining package entrance around 6:15. I know a ton of people usually line up ahead of time, even for the dining packages, but it really was not bad. We walked straight in, and despite a little mix up with handicap seating, a wonderful castmember found us a row just back from what I call the orchestra section where Nana was able to remain in her chair. The trumpeters were right in front of us, and the show was better than I remember last time. Cal Ripken, Jr. was the narrator that night, and the choir was beautiful. They entered, walking right by us where we were sitting...a great memory for sure.




After the CP, we walked back to our van and loaded up Nana and the kids. She had graciously volunteered to drive them back to the condo while we met up with some new friends at Jellyrolls. I put Gigantor in the co-pilot seat with google maps, and we helped Nana back the van out of the parking spot. Waldo and I then headed over to the Boardwalk area and thankfully received a text from DS that they had arrived safely without much difficulty. Waldo and I were free to enjoy the evening.





I really enjoy the Boardwalk, the vibe and entertainment. We grabbed a beer to split and walked around a bit while waiting for other mouseowners to gather at Jellyrolls. We finally headed that direction around 9 where were happy to meet new friends. Apparently there were doubts we would show...so I'm glad Fmer55 won the bet. It was a great time, and we ended up using Lyft for the first time for our ride back. I grabbed some pics of the gingerbread at Boardwalk too...





The next morning was New Year's Eve Eve, and we were scheduled for Magic Kingdom. Waldo and DS (13) were going to spend the morning at Typhoon Lagoon and meet up with us later. I am glad to report that by the time we got back after Jellyrolls we had hot water!
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Last edited by MamaB24; 01-12-2019 at 11:24 PM. Reason: Adding photos
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Old 01-12-2019, 11:29 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by tomandrobin View Post
Looking forward to your report......I need to get back to mine, after the rude interruption of all the Disney news this past week.
It was a rather rude interruption this week, wasn't it? I was looking for your report as I enjoyed the start of it. It is very nice to be able to put faces with names! I have the gift of time today as we are snowed under for the day...a rather nice break after hitting the ground running upon our return.
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Old 01-13-2019, 03:06 PM   #18
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Default Park Day Two: New Years Eve Eve at MK

Since this was our first foray into NYE at Disney, I was a bit worried about access to the parks. I had heard and read the closings in years past sometimes on NYE and sometimes sooner. We were offsite until NYE proper, and we had a mix of APs and tickets. I had thought to book a reservation for a meal in park, but I really did not want to do another sit down meal with our upcoming dining plan and associated ADRs. So, all this to say we took our chances.

DH and DS (13) were up earlier than the rest of us to head out o Typhoon Lagoon. This son is the only one of us who has ever actually visited a Disney waterpark, and this was his Christmas present day with dad. They arrived just after it opened, and they walked on to every ride in the park...multiple times. In fact, Waldo earned himself another Fitbit badge for stairs climbed, 86 flights of stairs if I remember correctly. The overwhelming favorite was the wave pool because the waves were so intense.




While those two were at the waterpark, the rest of us slept in, grabbing breakfast/brunch before heading out to Disney Springs for the late morning/early afternoon. Nana had some shopping she wanted to do, so we drove over around noon. We parked in the orange garage instead of lime which made for more walking, but now I have the garages straight for future visits. After a quick visit to the ganachery, Nana headed to look for some Christmas figurines she wanted while the three amigos I had and I started the Stitch hunt in Disney Springs. We did not make it far...sidetracked by the Lego Store and Amorettes Patisserie...






From there we went to the World of Disney Store which the kids had not seen since it's grand reopening. I was on the hunt for a new backpack, and we were previewing ideas for gifts to take home for our friends.




We all met up again around 2:00 and after some deliberation decided to drive to MK (one of my least favorite parks to drive to) and take our chances with handicapped parking. Here is where our day gets very interesting, and I have to say that it was the beginning of a perfect NYEE park day at MK. We drove from DS to MK with no traffic...truly, it was a direct drive with no lines. We entered the TTC and drove to the very first row of handicapped parking and found a spot. After unloading the WC, we walked into the TTC and walked straight on to the express monorail. There was room for us to sit, and I started to look around wondering where all the people were. I figured we must be about to run into them at the park...




When we arrived at MK, the parade was ending, and this may be a part of our timing. There is typically that exodus after the afternoon parade, and we were swimming upstream. In any case, the crowds were nowhere near what I expected, and it made for a wonderful night.

First up, we stopped by Cosmic Rays to feed the crew (again) before meeting up with DH and DS, newly returned from TL. Our FPs were for Space, Splash, and Big Thunder. The adults had FPs for 7D instead of Space this day, so we walked the kids over to Space first. Nana and I perused the Space Mountain gift shop, making her a personalized Pluto Magic Band which she had wanted for a while. DH went and picked up food for himself and DS as they had not eaten before leaving TL. Nana and I also hopped on the People Mover for a tirp before the kids were off of Space.



From Tomorrowland, we walked (and wheeled) over to Frontierland riding Splash and Big Thunder. Splash has been down so many times over our past few visits, and it was nice to have the whole family on it this time. We assured Nana she would not get that wet...then DSs ducked upon impact, allowing all said water to pass them and nail her in the face. Needless to say, that is her last ride on Splash. She also picked up a new hat to cover the mess of her hair. Big Thunder was our last FP, and this was by far the longest wait for accessible entry despite the FP. There was actually a family in front of us whose daughter tried to jump the line and then complained loudly that they had been waiting so long that she should be allowed to get on now. Thanfully a very astute cast member saw her and explained that everyone has to wait and has been waiting...she and her family stewed the rest of the time we were there.




From Frontierland, we wandered back toward Fantasyland because this is where we wanted to watch the big fireworks. As many of you know, I am not a fan of the hub...or people touching me. It turns out they had areas already taped off for the fireworks, so we found the spot right in front of Enchanted Tales with Belle and parked right inside that area. They also had balloons a al DVC and party events marked Fireworks Viewing Area.




The fireworks were amazing. 365 degrees and just beautiful. Aside from our last time viewing Wishes, this was by far my favorite MK fireworks.






The best part was these were the early show, so we had the chance to hit a couple of rides on the way out and still exit early. Gigantor spun himself and his siblings at turbo speeds on the teacups, and then we all headed out down Main Street. The vibe of the park was something to experience...the crowds were a bit thicker than earlier, but they were still manageable...and people were happy to be there. So much celebration, music, lights, and smiles. I soaked it in on the way out of the park.









Again, we managed to get right on the express monorail back to TTC and made an easy exit once again because it was only 8:30ish. We headed back to the condo to prepare to check out the following morning. We were splitting the group again early. DD (Lil Bear) and I had tickets to Early Morning Magic at HS, and Waldo was going to pack up the rest of the crew to transfer over to OKW before taking the other three amigos to AK for the morning/afternoon. We had evening plans at Epcot for NYE, including a very late ADR at Le Chefs de France, so it was going to be a long day.
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Last edited by MamaB24; 01-13-2019 at 03:16 PM. Reason: Adding photos
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:46 PM   #19
eandjmom
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From Frontierland, we wandered back toward Fantasyland because this is where we wanted to watch the big fireworks. As many of you know, I am not a fan of the hub...or people touching me. It turns out they had areas already taped off for the fireworks, so we found the spot right in front of Enchanted Tales with Belle and parked right inside that area. They also had balloons a al DVC and party events marked Fireworks Viewing Area.
.
Thank you for the idea on where to go for the fireworks on our next trip! I can't handle the wall to wall people either but definitely want our kiddos to experience the fireworks.
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Old 01-14-2019, 07:13 PM   #20
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Enjoying reading all about your trip! Great pictures.
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