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Old 07-05-2011, 11:55 AM   #1
onelilspark
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Special event AND a holiday?! Yep, crazy. 10/21 - Link to TR up!

You may have followed me over from my dining report here or my PTR here ...or even if you're "meeting" me for the first time, HI!

First, I'll introduce you to our crew:

On the left there's my fiance, Geoff. He's not really a Disney fan, but he's really close to being converted. But don't frett, he enables my obsession, so he's cool

In the middle there's my Mom, she's as big of a nut as I am. Her and her Mom (my Nana) went down for their first trip when my Mom was 16...in 197* (I'd be dead if I gave away her age like that!) Ever since, she's been hooked on the magic.

On the right there's my Dad. He's a fan, but not to the intensity of my Mom or especially me. My Mom and Dad now live in Florida, about 45 minutes away, but I convinced them to come up and spend time with us.

Then, there's me, your host for this trip report adventure:


(Hint: I'm the one on the left.)

I'm the crazy Disney fan of the family. I do almost all of the planning, researching, etc etc.


Now, as for the title? We went down for Star Wars Weekends during Memorial Day weekend. I wanted to go to Disney, Geoff's a big Star Wars fan...and we have zero time left to take off because we're going to Europe for our Honeymoon. Yes, feel badly for us, we live a very difficult life We managed to take a little time off Friday afternoon to drive to the airport, and we came back on Monday afternoon. Stay tuned for the rest!


Table of Contents
Day 1 - Part 1
Day 1 - Part 2

Day 2 - Part 1
Day 2 - Part 2
Day 2 - Part 3
Day 2 - Part 4

Day 3 - Part 1
Day 3 - Part 2
Day 3 - Part 3
Day 3 - Part 4

Day 4 - Part 1
Pictures from Mom & Dad
Day 4 - Part 2
Day 4 - Part 3

Wrap - Up

Official 1-post PTR!

Teaser


Last edited by onelilspark; 10-21-2011 at 10:08 AM.
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Old 07-05-2011, 01:00 PM   #2
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I'm here, Kelly and can't wait to follow.
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Old 07-05-2011, 01:06 PM   #3
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Hey there! It's me!! Looking forward to this. Just got back from a lake trip...having withdrawals from the Dis...no computer service there and limited phone, too. I've got lots of catching up to do tonight

Heather
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:34 AM   #5
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Sorry I neglected this for a bit! I promise I'll have a real update sometime today!

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I'm here, Kelly and can't wait to follow.
Hi Kathy! Thanks for joining!

Quote:
Originally Posted by hstrickland View Post
Hey there! It's me!! Looking forward to this. Just got back from a lake trip...having withdrawals from the Dis...no computer service there and limited phone, too. I've got lots of catching up to do tonight

Heather
Is it bad that I think of all the DIS I'll miss over my honeymoon and how much I'll need to catch up

Welcome!!

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Hi Kelly! You betcha, I'm subbing. Welcome back!
Hi Glenn! Welcome along!
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:00 AM   #6
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I'll be waiting



Heather
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:09 AM   #7
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I'll be waiting



Heather
Okay OKAY!
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:10 AM   #8
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:30 AM   #9
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Day 1, Part 1

As I mentioned in my intro, part of the reason we chose to go down over Memorial Day weekend is because we don't really have a lot of vacation time this year...due to the two week honeymoon...again, feel bad for us, rough life and all

Geoff worked some longer days during the week to be able to take Friday afternoon off and I just took a half day. We caught a late afternoon flight out of Buffalo so we could catch a direct flight down to Orlando. I've been flying a lot for work recently, so most of my flights have been delayed or canceled. This one managed to leave only 10 minutes late. I was so excited

Seriously...this was my tweet:
"Omg, this plane might actually leave on time. Considering my track record this month, I'm almost as excited about this as my destination!!"

We were flying AirTran, so earlier that week I decided to surprise Geoff by upgrading us to Business Class...he's 6'2" and hates flying mostly because he has to fold in half in airplane seats. Unfortunately, we weren't able to pick Business Class, but I was able to secure Exit Row seats (for a fee obviously...) which not only got us more leg room, but priority boarding AND free wi-fi. I was pretty excited. Did it for both flights Don't let him tell you I'm not a nice girl!

This was the shot of rainy, chilly Buffalo as we were waiting for others to board the flight:

It was pretty gross, in the 50s! I had packed a light sweater to bring with me, I was glad I had it when we were waiting for the shuttle after parking!

And on the plane:

Seriously excited that the plane was going to leave on time!

I love flying above the clouds and the way they look...I've been taking these photos every time I have a window seat.



Before I knew it, we were landing on the ground in Orlando. And as promised to Brook, I tweeted out the first palm tree sighting...even if the picture itself was pretty dull:


Next step was the faux-monorail, which I still love!


And straight on down to Magical Express!

We were second in line when we were stopped at the rope. Then the most wonderful CM opened up the line and led us straight to a bus!!


Okay okay...so it's a Mears bus, but still! No waiting!! The skies looked pretty ominous as we rode to Old Key West, then Saratoga Springs, then finally over to French Quarter. It was down pouring by the time we got onto Disney Property and our bus driver was so nice. He got all the bags off and then had everyone exit rather than have everyone stand in the rain (of course this meant it ruined my plan of jumping ahead of everyone to get in the check-in line...but oh well!)

Check in was slow. I have no idea what takes people so long to check in. It never takes me that long unless there's a problem on Disney's end...like in December at All Star Movies, that was horrific. This one family negotiated their room so many times I wanted to strangle them. I mean, I get that you want a nice room, but at the same time, there are 10 families behind you in line, common curtosey people! The family behind us must have loved us, we were done in 2 minutes! About the time we were checking in, my parents had pulled up to the resort. My Dad promptly got in the wrong line (for online check-in, they didn't do online check-in...) but I realized it too late. They still checked him in like normal, but he was the last one in that line, so no harm no foul. It was an innocent mistake.

While they were checking in, we went over and got dinner.

By now we were starving, so everything looked delicious! When I went to pay though, they didn't put a limit on my KTTW, so even though I had a CC attached to the account, it wasn't good for anything. Oh well.

I had pot roast:


And Geoff had fried chicken:


I won't go into too much detail about the food...it's all in my dining report! By the time we finished eating, my parents had moved to the Scat Cat's club for a drink. We went over to Guest Services to get my CC/KTTW situation taken care of (took 5 seconds!) and to get Geoff's ticket purchased since he's not cool enough to have an Annual Pass.

Up next: Pictures of Registrations, No Hockey?!, and Will my lack of room luck prevail??
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:44 AM   #10
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Too bad it was raining in FL when you arrived, but at least it was warmer than Buffalo, I assume.

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We went over to Guest Services to get my CC/KTTW situation taken care of (took 5 seconds!) and to get Geoff's ticket purchased since he's not cool enough to have an Annual Pass.
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:54 AM   #11
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Great update, Kelly. I hate flying, but I found taking pictures while up in the sky seemed to help the jitters a little as I was concentrating on the clouds and the scenery below.
Glad your plane left on time and you were able to get exit row seats.

I've never understood why it can take people 15-20 minutes to check in. This is not rocket science, people!

I assume that although raining in Buffalo and Orlando, that it was at least warmer in Orlando.
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:30 PM   #12
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Too bad it was raining in FL when you arrived, but at least it was warmer than Buffalo, I assume.



Spoiler alert: It was the only rain we saw all weekend! So I'll take it!

I didn't really mean it to be funny So when we move, I've mentioned that it might make sense for me to get an AP and for him to get a Seasonal. He was the AP. There's hope!!

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Great update, Kelly. I hate flying, but I found taking pictures while up in the sky seemed to help the jitters a little as I was concentrating on the clouds and the scenery below.
Glad your plane left on time and you were able to get exit row seats.
My Nana is a terrible flier. My Mom brought her out to Vegas and just gave her plenty of booze before hand

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I've never understood why it can take people 15-20 minutes to check in. This is not rocket science, people!
Seriously, not that hard.

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I assume that although raining in Buffalo and Orlando, that it was at least warmer in Orlando.
Yes, MUCH warmer!!
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:39 PM   #13
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Question...I'm not familiar with the Magical Express and all that because we always drive. So why a Mears bus? Was it Disney??? And one reason that I'm asking is for my sister. They will be flying in from CT next year when we do WDW/cruise.

Thanks!
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:56 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Question...I'm not familiar with the Magical Express and all that because we always drive. So why a Mears bus? Was it Disney??? And one reason that I'm asking is for my sister. They will be flying in from CT next year when we do WDW/cruise.

Thanks!
From what I understand, during busier times, they'll fill in with some Mears buses to get more people moved through. We still got the movie on board, so it doesn't make a huge difference once you're actually on board. You just don't get to see "Magical Express" on the side of the bus, you see a yellow bus instead. Not a huge deal.

I've taken ME a few times now from the airport. I tend to try and catch a ride back to the airport from a family member when it's time to leave because ME always wants to pick you up so early...and I rarely check bags, so I don't need to get to the airport super early. But for getting down, it's pretty nice since if you do check bags, since you don't need to wait for your bags, just hop on the bus. I mean, you might have a shot at waiting a bit for a bus to come, that's the luck of the draw, but I've never had the trip take super long. This last time was the first time I wasn't the first resort to stop at!!
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Old 07-08-2011, 01:12 PM   #15
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Thanks for the info...I'll relay it to my sister...she's been wondering.
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