2 Hard Core Princesses take on the World: AKA my hips are so sore!!!! UPDATE 20/3.
Hi there and thank you for reading our little trip report.
Let me introduce you to us:
DD:My funny, cuddly, cute and quirky 16 year old princess. She's all about Disney, Dr. Who, Harry Potter and Star Wars: my only daughter and my baby girl, who turned 16 in January. We had originally planned on a Disney Cruise with DH and some other loved ones, but DH had an opportunity to go golfing with his buddies in January and DD reminded me that I told her we could go back to the World for her sweet sixteen. Hey, you don't have to twist MY arm! :lmao:
Me: generally organized, mature and self-employed health professional who turns into a giggly 5 year old the second I pass under that beautiful WDW archway! Mum to 2: my DS who will turn 22 this March, is in university and is basically non-Disney and a bit of a homebody. Makes for an easy, non-guilty farewell!
We've been to Disney as honeymooners, with my parents twice when my babies were younger: DDs first trip when she was only 8 months old! We took another trip when the kids were 10 and 16 and then DS decided that was enough for him. We went back to the world with DD once as VoluntEARS in 2010 after a cruise and have stayed on property before and after visiting family in FLA 2009 and our 2011 DIScruise vacation. My tally is 10 times at the world: my first, when I was ten years old and was first introduced to my darling Mickey. Basically, we cannot resist that MOUSE! :)
We had originally planned our vacation at the AoA resort, in a mermaid room, as Ariel is a favourite and quite frankly, the rooms looked adorable! Who wouldn't want to shower in Ariel's treasure trove?! I mean, REALLY?
When I learned about Play/Stay/Dine, I called and knew Id have to switch resorts. If DH had joined us, we would have opted for Port Orleans Riverside and taken the regular DDP. DH likes to sit down for table service once a day. He would say hes more dignified that way, but I will say, hes not a hard-core as we are! I knew we would enjoy being close to the new resort and eating at the Landscape of Flavours, where there would be a lot of veggie options for DD. I chose a standard room at POP, hoping for a room in the 60s section, facing the lake, close to the bridge. The change in our package was less than $60 and gave us QSDP for 6 days. DD doesn't like being limited to TS every day and quite frankly I feel that it takes away a lot of park time(remember: we're hard core!) Since, I read the DISboards, I knew I could make good choices and find great veggie options in QS restaurants. As well, we looked forward to spending time at a resort which we had made wonderful memories twice before.
Stay tuned to fast forward to Feb 12 and our travel day in the next post. :thumbsup2
I just wanted to pop in real quick while I'm at work to say that I'm in.
I love reading about my fellow Canuck's Disney experiences! :cool1:
BTW, I'm hard core too... can't waste too much time sitting down to eat. :rotfl:
hi...joing in your TR! :goodvibes
Last year we vacationed in California and went on the Wonder Mexican Riviera Cruise. DD had missed a week of school and being in Grade 10 this year, did not want to have to catch up on a week of missed classes. I decided to arrange our trip over the President’s Day weekend, which coincides with Ontario’s Family Day weekend. As well, she had a school holiday on the Friday before, making this a nice 4 day weekend. I booked a 5 pm flight on Feb 12, so that she could attend school that day and only miss 2 days of classes. Brilliant!
We were all packed and ready to go on Monday night and DD went off to school on Tuesday morning, while I prepared last minute stuff: some food for my boys, our toiletries and all of the goodies for the window decoration that I was doing for DD’s Sweet Sixteen. As well, my hubby took me to lunch. In hindsight, I HATE late departures because it screws up our groove. We always arrive, check-in and then head to DTD(hard core!). This time, we were connecting at Toronto Pearson and arriving in MCO at 11:30(of course, you know there'll be a glitch). In any case, I planned according to what was best for the birthday girl.
I received an emergency text from DD that her French teacher had upset her and she was having some anxiety. This did not make me feel good, as I am prone to travel anxiety myself, but it’s amazing what you can do when you are a mommy. We met DD at her school and booted it to the airport for 4 pm, while trying to calm her down. This teacher turned out to be a thorn in our side, even though she was the first to respond to my email about her missing classes and said it would be absolutely no problem at all. :confused:
Here, I must tell you what a crazy packer I am (and how my OCD rears its ugly head in this case!) Generally, I over pack: I know this, I readily admit this and I embrace this about myself. I knew that because we were connecting in a Canadian city, not an American one, that we would have to clear customs, along with our checked baggage, in Pearson. Not fancying this, traveling Princesses we were, I made the executive decision that we would be traveling with carry-ons (including an extra bag tucked into our cases) for the trip there. This would make for a much smoother transition and save time and effort. Or so, I thought. DH dropped us off at the departures door and after a quick kiss goodbye, we ran off to get checked in. We got to the part where you have to weigh your baggage and I smugly placed the first one on the scale, knowing that I had weighed it at home at least 5 times. It was OVERWEIGHT by 4 pounds!! :scared1: Needless to say, I was flabbergasted(not to mention my realization that I was in fact, four pounds heavier than I had thought-let’s not even GO there!! :rolleyes1) I said, “OK,hehe.. well, let’s weigh the other bag then.” It was 5 lbs overweight as well! What the HECK?!!! I suddenly remembered that DD had tucked her laptop into her carry-on (thank you GOD) and after removing that and moving stuff from one bag to another(I really don’t understand why each bag must weigh less than 22 lbs if you are allowed one each-but who am I to argue?) we were on our way. Security was easy and we headed off to find a quick bite for my starving DD and then find our gate.
Our flight to Toronto was painless: 40 minutes up and down and even free wine! Goodbye winter! Goodbye snow! Finding our gate and going through security a second time and then customs took longer than I had anticipated however, we still had an hour to eat and get to the gate.
Arriving there, we noticed that there was quite a crowd and I started to think that they may have overbooked the flight. In fact, they had, and were asking people to bow out until the next day. They were making up for the ridiculous storm that had just happened and apparently they were still averting flights from the east coast, three days later! I met a nice lady from NFLD who had been flying for 3 days. Good grief! As the first hour passed, I was getting bummed, realizing that we wouldn’t arrive until about 12:15-12:30. Then after some murmuring about mechanical troubles, the pilot came out to announce that they were indeed having mechanical issues but that they had called the mechanics who were, and I quote: “reviewing the MANUAL in order to allow them to fly that evening”. Can we say, TOO MUCH INFORMATION?! I tried not to freak out too much and after about 30 more minutes, we were boarding our flight.
Upon finding our seat, I noticed that two seats behind us on the other side of the aisle, they were asking those seated there, to please get up so the mechanic could get back on the plane and fix what he had done incorrectly(again, TMI!) I kid you not when I say he lifted up one of the seats, fiddled around, said to the flight attendant, “oh, you were right, I did it wrong”, fiddled some more and then said, “OK, that’ll do!” I felt so bad for the woman who was to sit in that seat. She looked very worried and asked twice if everything was ok. The whole time during takeoff I had visions and was planning for a) having the woman and her seat to come crashing into the back of us and b) how I could keep DD and I safe if she were to get sucked outta the plane! I know these are ridiculous and unlikely scenarios, but for a nervous flyer, they were all too real!
We finally landed in beautiful Orlando, at 1:30 am, and even then stepping off the plane, it felt warm, humid and wonderful. I could even smell Florida through the gap between the plane and the gate! It must have been around 75 degrees and wonderfully humid! One quick lost moment when I went to A side, instead of B side(I don’t even have any excuse except maybe being tired) and we were on the Magical Express, in the front seat, watching the wonderful new movie and off to POP century!
Arrival at POP and first morning fun!
We arrived at Pop Century, at roughly 2 AM, tired but happy to be HOME! Check-in was relatively easy but the CM was (perhaps tired too) less than enthusiastic and we didn't feel the general magical check-in LOVE that we usually do. We were happy to receive our room in the 60s building, lake view and near the bridge! YAY! We promptly checked-in and went to sleep! (Not before setting our wake-up call for 7:00 AM!)
I slept like a baby, but woke up at 6:30. It was our first morning, we had reservations at 8:20 for the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare and I was EXCITED! I got ready quickly and put the window together as best as I could(I had remembered the window sill as wider than it was)headed out to get our mugs and some much needed coffee. It was a tiny bit chilly but the expected temperature was sunny with cloudy periods, with a chance of rain later in the day and high of 82! YES! My canuck blood needed warming!! :beach:
I returned to the room, woke the sleeping princess and after about a half hour of preparations, we were out the door to find a cab to the Grand Floridian. No bus for us(hard core plus being late!)I had purchased a tiny little camera and many pairs of shorts with pockets, in an attempt to avoid bag check on the busy weekend days. We brought our bigger camera today though, since we felt it would be less busy and DD wanted to take close-ups of the New Fantasyland.
Can I just say how much I LOVE the Grand Floridian. Its pretty, its fancy and I love the foyer (plus, 80s me loves the fact that Uncle Jesse sang to Becky on the Grand Piano there, on the Disney episode of Full House). We checked in, picked up a Sweet 16 button for DD and had our picture taken in front of the mural before going in, but later decided it wasn't all that great and didn't buy it. We had a delicious breakfast, highlighted by strawberry soup, made to order omelets, tasty juice blend and yummy waffles! We also were seated next to a carousel horse, near Big Bertha and saw Tigger almost immediately. Seriously? Could life be better? :cool1: Also seated across from us was a table with a large family which included triplet infant baby girls and two girls under 5! Cuteness overload!!!
Over the course of breakfast we met, Mary Poppins, Alice, the Mad Hatter and Pooh Bear. The icing on the cake (har har har) was when our server brought out a lovely little cupcake with a candle and started singing Happy Birthday to Lauren. She also gave her a sweet place mat, signed by all the characters from breakfast AND dinner. (Unfortunately, it got a bit wet later on in the day and no longer looks so cute):sad1:
After breakfast and a wonderful interaction with the concierge, we got a press a penny and jumped onto the monorail to start our hard core day at the Magic Kingdom. :goodvibes
Here we Are
Day 1 Photos
Seated at Breakfast
More Day one. :)
More New Fantasyland
Frome snow to warm sun makes any day a great one. Can't wait to read the rest.
Magic Kingdom Part Deux-Dapper Dans and Gaston!
Magic Kingdom day brought a few magic moments. Upon arrival, we headed right to New Fantasyland to make certain that we got a good look around before the weekend crowds arrived. Good choice, because lines were already long, even at 10 am and we chose to get a FP for Journey of the Little Mermaid with a return of 1:20 and then ran to get onto the Tea Cups before getting in line for Enchanted Tales with Belle. There was virtually no line for the teacups and I had a video plan! The way my ridiculous memory is these days, I frankly didn't want our day getting away from us and then forget to my plan!https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-0...3/IMG_0147.JPGhttps://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-h...astonstory.jpg
We absolutely LOVED ETWB. Belle is DDs favourite princess-really, they are kindred spirits. This experience was lovely-the children chosen to participate were absolutely adorable and Belles handler, noticed Lauren's birthday button and asked if she'd like to meet Belle. Sadly, the pictures, both PP and my own weren't all that great except one, but you can see them in any case. I should have taken a video because it was quite something. It is wonderful watching your lovely teen be transformed back to a little wee girl.
We went over to Gaston's village to take a look around and were delighted by its charm and the incredible details. The pictures don't do it justice, really. You have to see a video to really grasp its wonder. I went to fill up the water bottles and I came back to DD having found a little wee door. She was getting ready to show it to me and then out of the corner of our eyes, we saw......... GASTON!
I about PUSHED her over to him and she was the first one in line. I cant even begin to describe to you how perfect Gaston was: he was the best character interaction of our holiday! He had comments like, "See my muscles?" and "What a pleasure for you to meet me!" and "Oh, you're sixteen. Well, you'll need to be marrying soon. I hope you don't do foolish things like reading and thinking." He was BRILLIANT!
When we finished up with him we did a few rides over in the older part of Fantasyland, and then headed back for our JOTLM FP return. It was very sweet and we sang right along. We also loved the themeing here and thought the grotto was exquisite! Since it was almost time they were going to close the line, we thought we'd better get over to BOG for lunch.
We were both very excited for our lunch, had pre-chosen our food and our mouths were watering. One glich: as it turns out, the only thing Lauren wanted was the Quinoa Salad, because she doesn't eat egg dishes. No problem with the olives, well just ask for them taken out, except NO, you cant. It is a ready mix. She settled on French Onion soup, with a baguette and a chocolate cupcake. I ordered the Tuna Nicoise with a Lemon Meringue Cupcake and we both got Iced Tea. This restaurant is DREAMY and I love the real utensils, the drink refills AND the seating is super comfy. Since they bring your food out to you at your Magic Rose location AND on a fancy cart, it hardly feels like a QS meal at all. Our lunch was delicious-DD wasn't fancy on the soggy bread aspect of the soup-but I was! She loved the broth, I loved my entrée and we gobbled up both cupcakes in no time flat. YUMMY! https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-2...3/DSCN4785.JPG
We were thinking that at that time, we better mosey on over to Liberty Square, to get a spot for the afternoon parade. That we did and we enjoyed a lovely view from up on a planter. At this point the sky was looking a bit dark and it was starting to get a wee bit windy. After the parade, we went down to Main St to see the Dapper Dans. They were magical, as always and after the show, we asked if they would pose for a picture. Noticing it was DD's birthday, they decided to sing, in their Dapper style, Happy Birthday to Lauren. Are you kidding me? Too much to bear! https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-c...3/DSCN4786.JPG
After that experience, Lauren was floating on air all the way to the Main Street train station which we boarded to go over to Frontierland.
We grabbed a FP for BTM and then walked over to check out the lines in Adventureland. We managed to get onto Pirates, and Jungle Cruise before we asked ourselves: Shall we Dole Whip? Walking over to Aloha Isle, I was thrilled to see my old friend Orange Bird at Sunshine Tree Terrace. https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-J...1/DSCN4793.JPG
We had become friends back in 1978 when you could buy his cups of freshly squeezed orange juice. Ah, l'amour! We decided we would share a Dole Whip float, which really is the only way to make the Dole Whip any better. So HARD CORE, it should be illegal!
At supper hour, our bellies still full, we thought it might be time to ride Dumbo, and check out Storybook Circus with smallish lines. Well, I tell you, they were almost walk on! I think people took note of the immense thunder clouds that were hovering over the park. https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-j...3/DSCN4798.JPGhttps://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-W...3/DSCN4811.JPG
I literally was pulling out my poncho as I was whizzing around on my little flying elephant. Lauren was laughing at me, but when the sky opened up and I was dry and she was soaked, I SO had the last laugh.
We booked it, into Big Top Souvenirs and spent the next hour in there, while it poured buckets of rain. We had been having a lovely conversation with a darling young man on the DCP about his experiences, when DD was getting an all familiar blood sugar drop look. Of course, the strong, independent princess who's enjoying the company of a handsome young man, would find it hard to admit weakness, or tear herself away, so fortunately, her intelligent Queen was on the job and rushed out into the rain, to grab her some popcorn. The best part of the whole story is that upon receiving her popcorn, thus interrupting the engaging conversation, she promptly dumped it all over the floor! Poor thing. I had to bite my cheeks to control the laughter and she handled it well. The ingenious thing at Disney is that garbage never hangs around for too long, and sure enough, within minutes some wonderful cast member had it all cleaned up! Embarrassment averted and a great segway into heading back out for more fun .
We went over to Tomorrowland to ride Space Mountain, and coming out of the ride we could hear the fireworks..wait..FIREWORKS?! It's 8 pm! It would seem that on nights with inclement weather, they rearrange things so that people get to see parades, shows and fireworks while it's dry. Sadly, we only caught the tail end of them and the view is not great from TLand. We made our way back to Frontierland to ride BTM-in the pouring rain! I have to say it was one of the better rides of the day. It was wonderful, seeing everyone embrace the wet faces and hair and most everyone was taking it in stride!
We finished our night at Cosmic Rays, but Lauren didn't want what I thought she might there, nor was the roasted chicken section open, sadly. I grabbed a yummy Grilled Chicken Sammy, Lemonade and a Mango gelato, while DD waited outside, because it had finally stopped raining. When I arrived outdoors with the food she announced that I had missed the entire Castle show, but that they were projecting the hearts on the castle. I ate like a rock star and we moved quickly over there, so I could get some pictures. It was incredible and we watched the colours change and the hearts fall and all was good in the world.https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-w...5/DSCN4823.JPG
We ended the night with a slow walk down Main St and a some dinner at Pop for DD. She had Penne Alfredo(chicken on the side for mom)a FUSE Ice Tea drink and Tie Dye Cheesecake. In hindsight, she shoulda had the ice cream(!!!) because as it turns out the next time she was to eat at Pop, it was too cold to think about ice cream! BTW Why do my hips hurt?
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