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Old 12-27-2009, 01:44 AM   #16
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love the report so far
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Old 12-27-2009, 02:39 AM   #17
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love the report so far
Thanks! And thanks for finally getting me to page 2. I was worried that no one is reading it!

I'm off for 2 days to go see my brand new little nephew. I'll be back with plenty more stories and pictures.
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Old 12-27-2009, 06:02 AM   #18
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Love it so far !!!
Can I ask where you got the kids t shirts from or did you make them yourself??? I just love the matching shirts on the pics !!!
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Old 12-27-2009, 10:25 AM   #19
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Love it so far !!!
Can I ask where you got the kids t shirts from or did you make them yourself??? I just love the matching shirts on the pics !!!
I made them. They were super easy. I got graphics from the DISigns board and then printed them on dark t-shirt transfers and ironed them on. Here's a bit of a closeup of them.
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Old 12-27-2009, 11:28 AM   #20
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Loving your report!!! And the tshirts are so cute.
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Old 12-27-2009, 12:31 PM   #21
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All caught up and loving it!
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07/87 DLR***05/98 All-Star Music***01/04 Polynesian/4-night Wonder***02/05 7-night Magic Eastern***
09/07 Beach Club***10/08 7-night Magic Special Western (double-dipping at Castaway Cay!!!)
***12/09 Pop Century***08/13 7 night Fantasy Western

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Old 12-27-2009, 07:35 PM   #22
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Can't wait to read some more...enjoying this one loads!
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Old 12-28-2009, 11:52 PM   #23
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Thanks for all the kind comments! I just got back from meeting my cuddly 10-day-old nephew and have plenty more to come. Hang on...
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Old 12-29-2009, 12:19 AM   #24
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Ĺ an inch? Thatís not very much? What was I thinking??? Iím from Oregon and I should know better. Ĺ an inch is indeed a fair amount of rain... especially if it ends up being more than Ĺ an inch. But Iím getting ahead of myself. Back to the beginningÖ

This morning was Animal Kingdom. We enjoyed the extra sleep (the whole Ĺ hour we got! LOL) and were up at 7:30am. Again, it was breakfast in the room. We were out the door by 8:05 and waited only about 5 minutes before a bus for Animal Kingdom came. The ride to Animal Kingdom was much quicker than expected and we were there by 8:25am. We stopped to grab photos in front of their big tree, which was favorite of all the parks.


We were the first ones in our line and we chatted with the pleasant cast member while we waited. It was a bit chilly but we knew it would get warmer later in the day. It would get warmer, right?!?

The gates opened at 8:45am and we went straight to the rope that would get us closest to our first ride of the day: Expedition Everest! We watched Minnie, Goofy and Pluto, who arrived in their holiday attire to open the park.


When the rope dropped we got right up front at the next rope, the one leading us to Expedition Everest. We got on the first train of the day and were on our way to see the Yeti! I totally love this ride and I LOVED the great view from the top. I reminded myself to have one of the cameras out for our next ride so I could get some photos of Animal Kingdom from way up there. Letís just say that didnít work out. But I loved Expedition Everest, as did the boys. Brian maybe not so much. The backward coaster just isnít his thing. The ride was over too quickly but we loved it so much that, of course, we got Fastpasses for it!

Next up was Kilamanjaro Safaris. The wait time said 20 minutes but in all actuality it was a walk-on. We loaded right up and got to see tons of animals on our adventure. This giraffe in particular was so neat! Not browns and tans like we've seen at the zoo, but black and grey spots! Totally cool!




Brian and I both sat on the ends so we could get good pictures with our cameras. Tristan was next to me with his video camera and Chase had his camera out too. Poor Carissa was stuck in the middle and had no hope of getting any pictures with her camera. She was so frustrated! She tried and she tried but itís hard when there are people moving in front, behind and to the sides of you.

After the safari we took the Pangini Forest Trail where we saw gorillas and all sorts of other creatures.



Next up was the chance to get pictures with some of the characters in their Christmas garb. We had to decide between Mickey and Minnie or Goofy, Donald and Pluto. We went for the latter mainly because Goofy was in a Santa costume and looked so adorable! The line wasnít too long but we had to wait a bit for the characters to take a break. While waiting in the line it started to sprinkle. So we all just pulled our hats up and waited. The kids traded pins with some nice cast members, as they had been doing along the whole trip. This is always so much fun!

The trio of characters returned and it didnít take long before it was our turn. This was the first time the kids had gotten up close to a character this trip and they jumped right in, smiling, waving and hugging them.


Carissa in particular was very fond of the characters this trip. 2 days after this photo was taken she came up to me and said:
"I don't know why and I can't believe it but I think I'm Donald's favorite." Yes Rissa, I'm pretty sure you are!
The Photopass photographer got some pictures, as did I. Then Brian and I joined in and the photographer took some more. Hopefully these will turn out well. Iím excited to see them.
Edited to add: Hereís my fave!

By the time we left the character greeting line the rain had started steadily falling. Is this a sign of things to come???
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Old 12-29-2009, 07:48 AM   #25
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Great update! Awesome to be on the first train of the day on EE. I love that ride but cannot get anyone to ride with me!! Love the pics of the kids with Goofy, Donald and Pluto. I hope you did not have too much rain, can't wait to read more.


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Old 12-29-2009, 04:07 PM   #26
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We decided to duck into the nearby Festival of the Lion King show and hope that the rain would pass.
We sat in the warthog section this time, having been in the elephant section the last trip.


The kids traded pins with nearly every cast member in the building while waiting for the showÖ and there were a lot of them! The show finally started and it was fabulous! I got goosebumps a couple of times. I just love the costumes, the characters, the performances Ė everything about this show! The singing is just spectacular too! What a talented cast of performers!

The kids were chosen to take part in the finale, following characters around playing instruments and singing. So much fun for them! They got picked to do a lot of things this trip and it just makes those moments even more special.



When the show was over we were ushered outside and into the rain. Ugh! We stopped at the kids station on the way out of Camp Minnie-Mickey and then at some shops on the way, hoping that the rain would pass. No such luck.

Everyone was hungry so we ran over to Restaurantosaurus in Dinoland. The food here was pretty decent. Brian and I had the bacon double cheeseburgers and fries, Chase had the hot dog and fries and both Tristan and Carissa had chicken nuggets and fries. Now, I know both Tristan and Carissa must have been pretty hungry because they ate all their chicken. Thatís pretty good for them. Oh, and Iím sure the incentive of chocolate mousse for dessert didnít hurt. It was all pretty tasty and the dessert was a nice end to the meal.

With happy bellies we went outside and into the rain, which was falling much harder than before. Thankfully Dinosaur wasnít too far off. It was a walk-on and we quickly made our way onto a ride vehicle and into the Cretaceous period. I donít know why, but this ride always scares me. That part where they pop the scary dinosaur at you always gets me, even though I know itís fake and I know heís coming. The ride photo this year is almost exactly the same as our previous trip. Iíve got my eyes closed and am cowered down with my head in my hands. LOL Chase looks nearly as scared as myself, so at least Iím not the only coward in the bunch.

When we get outside things are really wet. The rain hasnít let up since about 10:30 this morning and the ground is puddles of water. The kids have been wanting to ride Primevel Whirl so we head over there and they ride alone, as neither Brian nor myself is fond of the tiny, twisty rollercoaster, especially when itís in conjunction with a spinning ride vehicle and pouring rain. Itís like the teacups on steroids. No thank you! Brian and I stake out a semi-dry spot undercover while we wait for the kids. They walked right onto the ride but it still seems like forever until they come back out. And when they do they are soaked! Tristan, whose coat doesnít have a hood, has a hat nearly soaked all the way through. Chaseís shorts are wet everywhere except in the crotch area and it looks sort of funny. Carissa, the poor girl, doesnít have an ounce of fat on her and is freezing cold. We seriously consider leaving right then and decide to walk and talk about it.

We do decide to put ponchos on, but I quickly learn that sticky plastic poncho over soaking wet jacket doesnít help keep you warm. So I later duck into a shop to take off my wet jacket and do better with no jacket and just the poncho.

We really want to see Nemo before we leave, as this is our only day at Animal Kingdom. We walk that way and hope that we can wait for the show in an undercover area. No luck - the queue is totally outside and itís still 45min before the show.

We keep walking and bypass Expedition Everest. We learned our lesson at Disneyland in 06 Ė you donít ride rollercoasters in the rain. When the rain smacks you in the face while youíll hurling along the track IT HURTS. No one wants that so we sadly opt not to use our fastpasses.

Brian decides that since heís soaked already he may as well ride Kali River Rapids before we leave, mainly in honor of his father, who loves all the water rides and who wasnít able to come with us on this trip. Well Iím not interested, as Iím cold and soaked too. Chase and Carissa decide to pass also, though Tristan is excited and braves it with his Dad.

Chase, Carissa and I find a semi-dry area nearby in a store that is more like a lean-to. No heat, no warmth, but dry. We look around for a bit, then huddle together to share our body heat. Sounds miserable and it was to some extent. But it was also wonderful to share that with the kids, to remember us standing in a lean-to shop, huddled together in our wet ponchos and hugging to stay warm, giggling about how silly it all is.

It seems like forever before Tristan and Brian come back, soaked even more than before. No one in their right mind is riding Kali right now so they got to ride twice in a row. In exchange, Tristan has agreed to see Itís Tough To Be A Bug, which he really doesnít want to see. I think maybe it scares him? I donít know but heís been adamant that heís not watching but decided to do so when Dad rode on Kali a second time with him. Just as a side note, riding Kali in the rain with Tristan ends up being one of Brianís best memories of the trip.

We decide to make the most of the rest of our day here so we rush to make it to the Finding Nemo show. We hustled our way to the theater and got some seats off to one side in the lower section. We were all pretty soaked but it felt good to sit down, take off the ponchos and try to warm ourselves. We did get somewhat drier while sitting down for the show, though there was no help for our soaked shoes.

As always, I loved Finding Nemo! The puppets are just my favorites and the music is fabulous. Itís such a great show. I wish I had searched for a CD of the show. One song in particular Nemo sings about how proud he is of his Dad and it makes me think of Brian every time.


By now it is about 3pm and we had a showing of Itís Tough to be a Bug to see. We just missed the show but were among the first to be let into the waiting area. We ended up in the first row which, in my opinion, didnít give a great view at all. The screen and 3D effects were blurry. But Tristan valiantly sat through the whole show while his little sister anticipated when the termite was going to spray and hunkered down out of the way to miss it.

We had had it with the rain and decided it was time to head back to the resort to dry off and warm up, even though we hadnít been able to take our final ride on Expedition Everest or walked the Maharaja Jungle Trek. We made one last stop to grab pins from Animal Kingdom for the kids pin canvasí at home then made our way to the bus stop and waited for our bus to come. It was a bit of a wait but it finally arrived and we happily boarded. It wasnít too long before we arrived at our stop and came up to the room.

We kicked off our wet, soggy shoes and sent the kids into hot showers. Brian and I took showers too and we all kicked back a little and munched our brownies from yesterday. I tried drying out our soaked shoes by placing the hairdryer inside them for short amounts of time. Unfortunately, I let them sit in Brianís shoes a bit too long and melted his insoles! LOL Thankfully we had 2 pairs of good walking shoes per person so we had dry shoes for tomorrow. I will never go on a trip without that extra pair of walking shoes. A lifesaver!

We were hungry so discussed our options, which included going to Downtown Disney for Rainforest Cafť or The Earl of Sandwich, eat at our resort (not really an option given the first nights food and service) or stay in the room nice and dry and order in Giordanoís pizza, which is supposed to be fabulous. We opted to stay in and out of the rain. The pizza took FOREVER to come and it wasnít exactly piping hot when it did, but it was nice to have a low key evening.

We watched the news heard that we ended up with ONE AND ONE HALF inches of rain today. No wonder we were soaked! The good news is that it looks like the rain should be passing through by 9:30am tomorrow so our day at Hollywood Studios will hopefully be a bit dryer than today.
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Old 12-29-2009, 05:39 PM   #27
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new reader



Just found your TR. I have subscribed so I can keep following along. Your photos are gorgeous! I am enjoying tagging along and looking forward to the next edition.
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Old 12-29-2009, 05:48 PM   #28
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Just found your TR. I have subscribed so I can keep following along. Your photos are gorgeous! I am enjoying tagging along and looking forward to the next edition.
Glad to have you here! I've got plenty more to say and plenty of pictures to go along with it. Thanks for joining in.
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Old 12-31-2009, 01:25 AM   #29
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Day 3

Well, the big stormfront has moved through but left us a last little bit of rain to contend with this morning. We just decided to go with the flow and hoped it wouldnít pour on us anymore. We even contemplated taking extra shoes with us into the park, since having wet feet is the worst part of the rain. But in the end we had faith that it would pass quickly.

We got up early for am Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios. We dressed, ate a quick breakfast and then set out with our hoodies and ponchos for our day at the park. Although we arrived at the bus stop at 7:15am, it was a very long wait for a bus. We didnít actually make it onto a bus until about 7:45 and werenít dropped off at the park until about 7:55. We tromped through the misty rain towards Hollywood Studios.

There was no way we would make rope drop, especially since arriving that late meant we had more people to contend with. We got through security and the ticket gates and were finally in the park at about 8:05. We headed straight for Toy Story Mania, hoping to ride early before the line got too long. While the wait wasnít as quick as we hoped it was only about 20 minutes. Nothing like the 90 minutes we would see later in the day.

This was our first time on Toy Story Mania and it was a big hit! Everyone really loved it and would have ridden it again, yet the long line (it was now about 40 minutes) kept us for going again so soon. We did grab some Fastpasses for later, which was a good idea since the Fastpasses were gone by noon today.

Once outside we realized that the misty rain was still falling so we kept on our ponchos (don't we look sweet in our ponchos and cool 3D glasses?!?). Would the rain ever go away?

Next up was our fave ride in all of Disneyworld Ė Rock ní Rollercoaster! The line was pretty short and we were in our limo within about 10 minutes. Canít beat that! We loved it, as always, and opted for an immediate re-ride. I just canít tell you how much we love this ride! Doesnít hurt that Aerosmith is blasting in your ears the entire ride. Gotta love it! We did have to take a short stop so Chase could buy an Aerosmith t-shirt from the ride store. Rock n' Rollercoaster is the best!

Well, my tummy started getting a little squirrely from all the rides already this morning but the Tower of Terror was right next door so we decided to go for it.

This was also a walk-on. Gotta love the low crowds! The kids loved the ride and wanted to go again right away. Unfortunately, the ride was a bit too much for me. I had to leave the gift shop and get some air because I was not feeling very goodÖ not good at all. Thatís the closest to hurling that Iíve ever come at Disney, so we decided not to re-ride right now and find some calm, quiet place to be for a bit.

We headed for the Magic of Disney Animation building. I donít think weíve ever been in this building but now that the kids are older we can do some of these things. Well, I didnít know what weíve been missing! We went to the movie, where the cast member announcing the show had a speech impediment that made her very, very hard to understand. We were thankful when it was time to move on.

First thing we saw was Tigger, who we quickly got a picture with. The rest of the character lines seemed a little long so we passed those up. I knew we wanted to go in and draw with an illustrator so we got in line for that.

Carissa and I sneaked over to get a quick meet and picture with Minnie. At this point she had a really-have-to-go bathroom run. Brian took her and they got back just in time to join us and we all filed into the animators studio.

The illustrator taught us how to draw Sorcerer Mickey. It was so much fun! I really enjoyed learning how to draw him and listening to the tidbits the animator had to share.


We all came out with unique versions of Mickey and the kids all want to go back and draw with an animator again. Itís on our to-do list for our next day at Hollywood Studios.

(The kids are all holding their own drawings on top. Chase is holding Brian's drawing on bottom and Tristan has mine on bottom.) I carefully rolled up the drawings and we brought them home. I'm not sure what we'll do with them just yet, but I'm definitely keeping them all.

Up next: Walt or Ariel? Who will reign supreme? Tune in to find out...
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Old 01-01-2010, 02:37 AM   #30
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Happy New Year!!!
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