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Old 04-01-2011, 03:04 PM   #1
Disney Donna
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: Gilbert Arizona
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An Oldie Girls Only Trip Report

Hi everyone... I was going through one of my trip reports that I wrote about 5 years ago... I don't know if this is appropriate or not, but I thought I would post it here in case anyone might be interested in reading it... if so, I hope you enjoy... SIDE NOTE: I don't write too many trip reports, in fact the last one was of when my Mom and me just went a year later... but I'm a Disney fanatic and go as many times as I can... I just have't written any trip reports lately...

________________________________________
Hi everyone... this is my first trip report, so please bear with me... Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I've enjoyed typing it... Now, on to the trip report!

Intro: First, let me introduce the "cast" of characters. My name is Donna and I just turned "50". The reason I say this is because Disneyland and I turned 50 in the same year, (even though I'm 3 months younger). My family has been going to Disneyland since 1956 and we even meant Walt Disney while we were there. We really love going there and have made it a vacation place for us every year and sometimes more than once a year for several days at a time. To say that I'm a Disney Fanatic would be an understatement. We've been taking my kids since they were infants and husband and kids love it as well.

Susan, (age 43, almost 44) my friend, is like a sister to me. I've known her ever since she was born. My family and her family became fast and close friends when we meant each other while we were stationed in Hawaii. She was almost born on our couch. Since we were very close, when her Father got out of the Navy, they moved to Arizona where my Father retired, we became like sisters. Of all the times that my family went to Disneyland, Susan and I never went there together (except when we would meet up with our kids and family and then it was only for a short while)... so, we decided that we needed to have a "girls" weekend and thus the planning began. We decided that we would go to Disneyland during the Martin Luther King 3-day weekend, January 14-17. Now, I know it's to be crowded, but we just wanted to relax and do whatever we decided we wanted to do... sooo, on to Day One!
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:06 PM   #2
Disney Donna
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Day One of the Oldie Trip Report

Day One - 1/14/06 - On the road...

We left on Saturday morning at 5:00 am Arizona time, gaining an hour in California... Yippee, more Disney for us We grab some coffee and danish and off we drove. About 3 hours later and 4 miles from the California State Line, we stop at “Flying J” to gas up, potty break and get something to snack on. We both end up with chocolate milk and some corn nuts… we put on the Monkee’s CD and off we go singing & drinking our milks driving on down the road to California… don’t we look cool? Now it's only a 3 1/2 hour drive from here to get to Disneyland… Yippee, we are getting closer. We played slug bug (I won) on our way and were chatting and laughing and making up a funny story (joke) to play on our husbands… sometimes, it gets pretty windy going into Indio and around the mountains (sometimes to where you have to really hang on to the steering wheel to keep your car from swerving) which is a good place for all the energy saving wind (mills) generators that are all along there… so Susan and I made up a little story to tell our husbands, that we thought that the wind generators should be turned off because the generators were making it too windy and making it hard to keep the car from swerving… LOL… we really crack ourselves up… needless to say, they really didn’t fall for it when we told them… oh well, we got a “kick” out of it… LOL. Anyway, we were chatting so much that I missed the 91 exit from I10... I knew the drive felt longer then it usually does, so by the time we realized that we missed the 91 exit, we decided to stop for directions... (not something that guys like to do)... (just kidding)... well, shortly after that we found our way to I5 South and exited on Harbour Blvd. We found our Hotel, Park Place Inn and Mini Suites, and our room, 127, bottom floor was ready! We parked the car by our room and found everything to be very convenient. What a great room, a little small, but just the right size for us. The window faced the pool, we had a microwave and refrig, coffee maker, vending machines down the hall and two comfy beds. The staff was very nice and helpful. I would love to stay there again.

We had purchased our 3-day park-hopper passes on the Disney website and had it so that we could pick them up at the "Will Call" window. It was kind of rainy, so we grabbed our umbrellas and off we went to retrieve our passes. I knew that if it was rainy that the park wouldn't be too crowded and so we decided that it was a great time to ride the rides while crowds were light.

After we had our passes in hand, we entered Disneyland! Ahhh, what a beautiful place Disneyland is. Even raining, it's wonderful. We decided that we were really hungry, so we each grabbed a corn dog and sat at the Coca Cola Corner and ate. We decided that we would start out in Adventureland. We noticed that the "Jungle Cruise" ride wasn't crowded, so we stood in line for maybe 10 minutes and had a wonderful skipper. I really liked the updates they made to the ride and the piranhas were pretty neat. What fun Next, the "Indiana Jones" ride just re-opened after being "down" so off we went and in a few minutes we were buckled up in our jeep having a great time going through caves, over bridges, going by snakes and dodging spears... but Indiana Jones helped us get back... what a guy!

Next we went to ride the "Pirates of the Caribbean" Okay… a little off topic… my father passed away about a 1 ½ years ago… I miss him so very much… his first name is Muriel… when Susan and I was getting ready to get on the boat, I noticed that there was a name on the side of the boat we were to get on… I looked at it and spelled it out in my head… once getting on the boat, I even looked at it over the side of the boat and sure enough, my Dad’s name was on there, MURIEL… Wow… that was a really awesome moment and one I won’t forget… made me think my Dad was there with us… I love you Dad… Anyways, as always, a fun and relaxing ride. I wonder how it will look after the refurb Hope they keep it awesome and keep most of the original ride.

Then we decided we should ride the "Haunted Mansion" Susan doesn't really remember this ride as she confides in me that the last time she rode it was during her Senior High trip and she was "making out with a guy" while riding it... LOL... I was a little disappointed that it still had the "Nightmare Before Christmas" holiday overlay up... while I think it is very well done, I really like the original better... so, even though we enjoyed it, Susan still hasn't seen the original. I tried to explain some of the original parts to her, but you really have to see it to appreciate it.

Now, since we were close to the "Splash Mountain" ride, and it was kinda wet outside, we thought it would be a good time to ride. This is one of my favorite rides... in fact, the year that it first opened, I rode it 9 times that trip and didn't even know I was pregnant... hummm, wonder if that is why my youngest loves this ride too... We got on the log and sat in the back, my favorite seat. We didn't get too wet and had a great time. The picture that is taken when going down the "big" drop turned out okay, but we wanted to try for a better picture (at least that was the excuse we used to ride again), so we went again. This time we asked for the front two seats. We got so wet, not by so much of the drops, but by the water coming over the sides of the log. We were soaked... and we couldn't stop laughing. We got a great picture the second time, so we each bought one for a souvenir.

We caught the train at New Orleans Square and rode around full circle and got off at NOS. We walked to Frontierland and saw that the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies show was playing at the Golden Horseshoe, so we went in. It was standing room only, so we went and stood by the bar and enjoyed the show... They were so funny... I was laughing so hard I loved how the “main” Billy Hill imitated Elvis... I won't give the rest away in case you haven't seen it, but if you haven't, it's a good show and very fun.

We rode "Thunder Mountain Railroad" next. It was only about a 15 minute wait. I love how they make the rocks look like they are falling in the cavern now. Very fun.

It was getting kinda late and we had a big day, and with Susan starting to feel a little chill, we decided it was time to go back to the Hotel for some shut eye so we could get up early the next morning for another full day at the park. BUT, on the way out, I noticed that the Tiki Room wasn't crowded and the next show was to start in 5 minutes... so we went on in to see the show. Susan hasn't seen this before and enjoyed it as well. I love the fact that this was Walt Disney's first animatronics show... very well done and plus the fact that there's some of "Hawaii" in the show and since Susan was born in Hawaii, it made it more special.

Now we finally leave for the hotel, but since we are hungry, we make a stop at Denny's, just across the street a few steps away from our hotel... we split a meal of a “Grand Slam” and with tummys full, we go back to the hotel and got ready for bed. Thought we would be able to watch some TV... ha, ha, ha... but I soon fell asleep and so did Susan... Snor, Snor, nite, nite.

Next, Day 2 - A Freebie Day
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:09 PM   #3
Disney Donna
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Day Two of the Oldie Trip Report (Day 2 - A Freebie Day)

Day Two – Sunday, 1/15/06 – A Freebie Day

We woke up bright and early, jumped out of bed and hurried to get ready to go... okay, maybe we didn't jump out of bed... crawled would be a better word I was sore and so was Susan... our bodies just don't spring out of bed as they used to... Anyway, we got ready, went outside and saw beautiful weather, in the mid 60"s with a breeze and plenty of sunshine not a cloud in the sky. We went next door to the "Captain Kids" restaurant to have our continental breakfast of pastries, milk, juice, cereal and coffee. We walked across the street to Disneyland with tummys full and smiles on our faces. Susan wore a fanny pack and when I asked her if she had her ticket, she couldn't remember which compartment she had put it in. While standing there waiting for her to find it, I noticed two girls standing close by, kind of watching us. Finally, Susan found her ticket, but just as she did, one of the girls approached us and asked if we wanted to get into the park for free... I was a little puzzled and asked how? She told me she and her friend works for Disneyland and they are allowed to let up to 3 people in for free each. Her friend had 4 friends to get in for free, but since they could only allow 3 at a time, she was going to let the 4th one in for free and since it's the same "stamp" at the entrance in her "visitors" book, might has well add 2 more and make it 3. WOW, what a great Cast Member… of course we said YES and figured then we would be able to come back into the park on the morning of the day we were leaving to go back home... We thanked her and after we got in the park, we had asked someone take a picture of us in front of the MICKEY flowers. They were really beautiful!!! Then we went to see the "Walt Disney Story" on Main Street next to the Bank. It was very, very good. I learned some more “Disney” info which is really neat and shared some of my own “Disney” info to the "host cast member". The movie was well done and very enjoyable (I had seen this in October the last time I was at Disneyland, celebrating my 50th BD, but Susan hadn't seen it yet). I really enjoyed seeing it the second time and could watch it several more times. I do hope however, that they bring back Walt Disney's offices for display. I think it would be neat to keep the movie, maybe show it in the lobby, but also put Lincoln back in the auditorium.

Next, we walked up Main Street and went to check out Space Mountain. While we were walking to the ride, we saw a trash can rolling down the walk way. Susan thought it was a regular trash can and almost went to stop it, when I realized what it was, (I hadn't seen "Push" the talking trash can before, but have read about it from other trip reports on this website). We followed it and had a lot of laughs watching people's reactions. The person who was the voice and was doing the remote controlling of it was standing behind Susan. He wasn’t too noticeable, but Susan had over heard him and with him still standing behind her… hope it turns out. We both thought that this would be a very fun job. After that, we went to "Space Mountain" and decided on a fast pass since it was a 40 minute wait. That was a good idea as we went to the "Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster's" ride and rode it 3 times in a row trying to get a good picture to email home. Susan had a higher score each time... We then rode the "Matterhorn Bobsleds" with a about a 20 minute wait. Love this ride!!! It was almost time for our fast pass for Space Mountain, so we went to the Star Traders shop and looked around a bit and discovered people getting their pictures taken as different characters in the Star Wars movies. It was pretty freaky when a 4 year old girl had a picture taken of her face and it was formatted to a picture of an older girls body which made the little girl look like she was 12 years old. Another little girl who was only 5 years old had her picture taken and formatted to an older character and when she was told to smile it showed that her two front teeth were missing... we thought that was funny. But what was really freaky was when Susan and I had our pictures taken together and it was formatted to characters that are younger looking then us... it looked funny to see younger bodies with older faces... After the picture, we went on "Space Mountain". So much fun!!! Way better after they updated and refurb it... very dark, smooth, fast and the music was great! Awesome...

Next we went to eat and got some chicken sticks with french fries... very yummy We decided to watch the 3:00 pm parade, so Susan sat on the curb and saved me a seat while I went to get some ice-cream in a waffle cone. It's really too bad that they don't have Fantasia ice-cream any more... that was my favorite. (It was a special recipe that Carnation made just for Walt Disney and was only sold at Disneyland… since Carnation is no longer at Disneyland, Gibson Girls Ice-Cream parlor doesn’t have the “rights” to the recipe, so they had to discontinue that flavor) Anyways, when I got back, I saved a seat for Susan while she went to look for something to snack on. She ended up with ice-cream too. We sat on the shaded side of Main Street and people watched. The parade started and it was really beautiful and very well done. Very impressive. I was getting cold and after having ice-cream we decided to go back to the hotel to get my jacket and to put our feet up for a little while. We relaxed for about an hour then it was up and out the door and off to California Adventure. Susan hadn't ridden "Soarin' Over California" yet, so that was what we were going to ride first. I walked up to the cast members who were standing at the beginning of the line and I asked how long the "stand-by" line was. They said it was about a 30-35 minute wait. We decided to go ahead and wait when one of the cast members asked us how many were in our party. We told them 2, and he gave us a special pass for us to go through the fast pass line... Wow… what a nice Cast Member. When we got to the part where we were to line up in the rows for the ride, I asked if we could get front row and center seats. They said yes, but we would have to wait about 10 minutes... we said we would and then in a few minutes, we were let in and got front and center seats. I love this ride... I love to smell the ocean, the orange groves and the pine trees... Susan really enjoyed the ride and wanted to ride again, but we decided that we would ride something else first.

I've been wanting to get her on the "ToWeR oF tErRoR" ride ever since I rode it in October. This was a ride Susan was apprehensive about after hearing about it & the drops. (I didn’t realize until later that I didn’t think to tell her that there were seats, so she thought that we would be standing during the drops… oops… LOL)… but she decided to go ahead and try it anyway... what a "sport". Even though she was a little nervous, it became her favorite thrill ride and we went on it 2 more times, making it 3 times in a row. Since I have a "slipped knee cap", I would ask if we could go to the right side of the ride where there were no stairs (fast pass side) and they always let us. We would stand in line like everyone else, but just not do the stairs and it was a shorter line... much better on my knee as it's kind of hard and painful to do too many stairs.

Next we wanted to go and check out the new "Monster's Inc." ride. It was a 40 minute wait and we were tired, achy and hungry, so we decided to go on it the next day. (It was opened to the public, but I learned from another cast member that I had meant the next day, that on Sunday, Jan. 22 would be the Grand Opening and they are going to have a red carpet and movie stars...) We went to "Captain Kids" restaurant to get something to eat for supper (next door to our hotel). I had the buffet and it was really terrible. Susan ordered off the menu and it was okay. I wouldn't suggest having the buffet at 10:00 at night as the food is dried and tasteless, but none the less, it was something to help make our tummys not growl so we could go get some sleep. Got ready for bed and before I knew it I was fast asleep.

Next, Day 3 - We ARE going to close it down
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:10 PM   #4
Disney Donna
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Day Three of an Oldie Trip Report (Day 3 - We ARE going to close it down)

Day 3 - Monday, 1/16/06 - We ARE going to close it down!

Up and at em', very, very slowly We must have put some miles of walking as my feet didn't want to bend... but we limbered up a bit and off we go again for another adventure at Disneyland. We were going to do Fantasyland first, but got so caught up in shopping that it got crowded before we were ready to ride. We did ride "Pinocchio" and we took pictures in the “gold” ride displays of "Peter Pan", the "Carrousel" horse, "Dumbo" and the "Teacups" after which we went to Toontown and rode "Roger Rabbit's Cartoon Spin" with a 30 minute wait. We visited with the people behind us in the line who were from Hawaii and had a good time. I know fast pass is the way to go if you want to get a lot of rides in; however, I really enjoy being in some of the lines and looking at all the details that Disney has to offer. Some of it is an adventure in itself. Anyway, again, Susan hadn't ridden this ride before either and hadn’t seen the movie, so I tried to explain the concept of it. We get on the ride and had fun trying not to get sprayed with the "Dip". I love the "black hole" effect where you ride through it. I don't know how they do that, but I think it's pretty cool.

We stopped to shop a little more in the "Gag Factory" and took a few more pictures and then off to see the inside of Mickey's and Minnie's houses. Susan has never been inside them before. We had a great time looking at all the details and reading the funny labels on the books. In Minnie Mouse's house, there is a recipe that we decided to copy down to see if it is a real recipe. It is a cookie recipe with cheese... hummm, not too sure if it's a real recipe, but I want to try it... might be pretty tasty... at least for mice...

We left Toontown and rode the Train to Main Street where we got off to go and check our picture that we had taken "by one of the Disney photographers" of us in the "hub" with Sleeping Beauty's Castle in the background and with the "Partners" statue of Walt and Mickey. We really liked the picture and decided to buy it, but would come back to pick it up later in the day. We went to the Golden Horseshoe to get a drink and watch the Billy Hill show again. This time they had a couple of different acts... they impersonated the Beatles. It was good, but I really liked the first one we saw earlier in the trip better. Once again, our tummys were having a chat with us because we didn't have lunch and it was almost 4:00 pm, so we went to the Riverbelle and ordered the vegetable stew in a bread bowl with a salad. It was pretty good, but I like the stew they used to have better with the beef in it. We rode the "Mark Twain" around the Rivers of America. It was getting a little "nippy" out so I had Susan and me stand by the smoke stack on the top level towards the front of the Mark Twain and put our backs, feet, legs, rear end and anything else we could lean up against it to keep warm... This is my favorite boat. We then went on the "Big Thunder Mountain" railroad. I didn't want to go get my coat that I left in the hotel room again, because since there wasn't any breeze, it didn't get much cooler and I wanted us 'ole gals to close Disneyland down that night... We couldn't seem to close it down the two previous nights when it was opened until midnight, but by darn, we were going to close it down this night... (it helped that it was only opened until 10:00 pm)... We went to pick up and purchase our picture from earlier in the day (just in case we didn't get back to Disneyland to close it down after all) and then we went over to California Adventure around 5:30-6:00 pm (it closed at 8:00 pm) and rode the "Monster's Inc." ride. We decided to again wait in a 30 minute line to ride it. It was okay, some parts were pretty neat, but, not one that I will probably ride again too often. Kids will probably love it. We then wanted to go ride the "Tower of Terror"... which we did, over and over again. With the low crowds, we rode 3 times in a row and shopped in the store after the ride. California Adventure was closing so we walked slowly back over to Disneyland and got there around 8:30 pm and decided to get another snack. The bakery sounded good to me, so I stood in a long line to get a brownie and Susan went to the Candy shop and got her snack and she was going to wait for me on the bench on my favorite porch on Main Street so we could enjoy our snacks and people watch some more. While I was in the bakery, I over heard from the Cast Member that an announcement was made that they were going to have fireworks starting in 5 minutes... I was really excited as I wanted to see them but we didn't get to see them during the weekend and they usually don't have them on a weekday. So I grabbed my brownie (very yummy) by the way, and waved to Susan to come and stand in the middle of Main Street where it wasn't crowded and had a fantastic view of the fireworks... what a beautiful display of fireworks, lasers, sound effects, music, Tinkerbell and all the colors... WOW... I saw some of it in October, but not like this. We didn't have a great view like this one. After the fireworks, we sat on the bench on the porch and ate our snacks and people watched while we visited with a couple that was doing the same thing. Since Main Street stays open for another hour after Disneyland closes, we enjoyed just relaxing and being there. We did it... We stayed until closing.. We walked slowly back to the hotel around 10:40 pm, and, since the next day we were leaving at noon, we decided to get some of our packing organized and done so we could go to Disneyland the next morning for a couple of hours without having to spend time packing instead. After packing, it was off to bed for another good nights sleep.

Next, Day 4 - I'm glad I forgot
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:12 PM   #5
Disney Donna
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Day Four of an Oldie Trip Report (Day 4 - I'm glad I forgot)

Day 4 - Tuesday, 1/17/06 - I'm glad I forgot!

We're off for our continental breakfast and then to Disneyland We got there 10 minutes after 9:00 am... Oops I forgot that Disneyland didn't open until 10:00 am since the holiday weekend was over, but, Susan remembered that we hadn't used our early entry yet and therefore, we got to go in right away... So, we took advantage of low crowds and visited "Snow White's Wishing Well" and then rode "Peter Pan", "Mr. Toads Wild Ride", "Snow White", "Alice in Wonderland", the "Matterhorn" (2 times, one on each side), walked right on to "Space Mountain" and one more ride on "Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters" and we emailed one more picture (yes, Susan beat me again)... It was almost 11:00 am California time, which meant it was almost 12:00 pm Arizona time, so it was a slow walk down Main Street to get ready to leave... went back to the hotel, got in the car and left to go home on 91 East... followed the sign and then got lost again because all of a sudden, we weren't on 91 anymore... there was a lot of construction, so I thought I didn't see a sign, so we got off the freeway and went back on... did this twice before we decided to take the 60 to Indio... I knew that was the right direction... went through the mountains and found I10 to Phoenix. What a wonderful trip we had... It was a GREAT GIRLS “DISNEY” WEEKEND and we had a BLAST I love Disneyland and sharing it with Susan.

Well, if you've read all of my trip report, I thank you... if you have any questions, just "ask" away and I'll try to answer the best I can.
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:53 PM   #6
Sherry E
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Okay so after a coffee and lunch break I am back!
 
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How wonderful that you decided to share your trip with us!

What I would suggest is that we put all of the pages and installments of your trip into one document - in one trip report. It's easier to follow that way (for everyone) and it keeps everything in one place. Right now, I see something like 5 different installments for one trip, but they are all in separate threads. Usually there is just one thread per trip (heck, some of us even have many different Disneyland trips in one thread)!

I can merge all the different installments together into one thread and then you can just keep adding in the one thread - does that sound good?
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Pumpkins, Peppermint, Pastels and...Club 33!!! - (A new chapter begins... Many photos and wacky tales, coming soon to a Trip Report thread near you!)
And for some non-holiday seaside fun in the sun ~~ 2012 Catalina Island/Avalon Trip Report - My Solo Day Trip, in Photos (LOTS of Photos!)- 7/21/12 & Highlights from 2013 & 2014
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Old 04-01-2011, 04:28 PM   #7
Disney Donna
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Thank you Sherry...

That would be awesome if you could post all my installments into one thread... I really would appreciate it... Thanks so much Sherry
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Old 04-01-2011, 04:48 PM   #8
Sherry E
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Okay so after a coffee and lunch break I am back!
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disney Donna View Post
That would be awesome if you could post all my installments into one thread... I really would appreciate it... Thanks so much Sherry
You're welcome! I will start doing that now...merging all the threads into one. So everything should fall in the proper order once it's finished. And then when I get it into one thread, when you continue on - or when people reply - it will all be in one place.
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**...Rockin' my Disney Side since 1972 ... Now taking on the holidays, one photo (and one Superthread!) at a time...**

Pumpkins, Peppermint, Pastels and...Club 33!!! - (A new chapter begins... Many photos and wacky tales, coming soon to a Trip Report thread near you!)
And for some non-holiday seaside fun in the sun ~~ 2012 Catalina Island/Avalon Trip Report - My Solo Day Trip, in Photos (LOTS of Photos!)- 7/21/12 & Highlights from 2013 & 2014
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Old 04-01-2011, 04:58 PM   #9
Sherry E
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Okay so after a coffee and lunch break I am back!
 
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Okey dokey! All merged together in one place!
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**...Rockin' my Disney Side since 1972 ... Now taking on the holidays, one photo (and one Superthread!) at a time...**

Pumpkins, Peppermint, Pastels and...Club 33!!! - (A new chapter begins... Many photos and wacky tales, coming soon to a Trip Report thread near you!)
And for some non-holiday seaside fun in the sun ~~ 2012 Catalina Island/Avalon Trip Report - My Solo Day Trip, in Photos (LOTS of Photos!)- 7/21/12 & Highlights from 2013 & 2014
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:30 PM   #10
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I just read your trip report! It makes me want to go with my Best Friend! Thanks for sharing!
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