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Old 06-04-2012, 10:02 PM   #31
oboedm
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Great start to your TR! I love detailed trip reports with toddlers-- it gives me tips for the future! James' reaction to the animals was super cute! I really need to stay at AKL sometime!
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Old 06-05-2012, 10:08 PM   #32
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James is so CUTE

I'm enjoying your report. We were on the Dream in April and stayed at AKL for 2 days after, it was so relaxing!!

Our first trip with DD12 was when she was 8 months old and DS10 when he was 18 months old, both were memories I will never forget. My DS swears he remembers things, not sure if it is from pictures or memory but they are times DH and I wouldn't trade for the world. Enjoy every minute of James!!!

Can't wait for more
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Old 06-07-2012, 12:52 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by vikkii19 View Post
Don't you just love those value rooms, great point value.

I hope DD sleeps on the flight and on ME like James did, it would be sooo much easier than trying to entertain her the whole time.
Awesome value! And we didn't even notice the size difference

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Totally subbing in for this! Your DS is adorable! My DH and I ate at Jiko on our honeymoon and it was the first time I'd ever been to AKL. I'd love to stay there some time. It's gorgeous.
Thank you! We've never eaten at Jiko but the Hubs commented on how nice it looked when we walked by there one day, so I think we will have to try it out one day!

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Originally Posted by oboedm View Post
Great start to your TR! I love detailed trip reports with toddlers-- it gives me tips for the future! James' reaction to the animals was super cute! I really need to stay at AKL sometime!
Thanks! I was always looking for detailed toddler reports when we were planning, plus I am actually going to be making this into a book for James when it's finished

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James is so CUTE

I'm enjoying your report. We were on the Dream in April and stayed at AKL for 2 days after, it was so relaxing!!

Our first trip with DD12 was when she was 8 months old and DS10 when he was 18 months old, both were memories I will never forget. My DS swears he remembers things, not sure if it is from pictures or memory but they are times DH and I wouldn't trade for the world. Enjoy every minute of James!!!

Can't wait for more
My little one actually woke up saying "go, awa (agua), bye" for three days after we got back. So although it won't be a lasting memory for him, we know it made an impression on him! And there are so many moments we will never forget
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:25 PM   #34
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Travel Day: Part Four

Since neither Candi nor I had eaten, basically all day, and we knew it was already past James' lunch time (in our time zone) we decided to head over and see if my parents wanted to join us for a bite to eat. They happily took us up on the idea and told me to lead the way.

We had a huge dinner planned that night, but it was still a little over 4 hours away, so I figured The Mara would be the perfect option. We could all get a little something to munch on, without getting so full that we wouldn't be hungry for dinner.

We made our way down the hallway and onto the main floor, where the lobby is, which is actually floor 3, not 1 Confused us greatly for a day or so when we stayed at Kidani a while back






The lobby here truly is breathtaking!

We quickly realized that the food was all located on the first floor, so back to the elevators we went to get to the right destination. When we got off, we were confused for a minute. Once you exit the the elevators there is a wall to your left and if you go to your right there is doors to the pool straight ahead, and Boma and Jiko on either side of you. We were about to head into the elevators once again, thinking we had the wrong floor, when I finally spotted the sign that pointed you towards Mara. You actually have to go outside and take a pathway by the pool to get there. Pretty easy after you figure it out!

We were on the regular dining plan for our couple days in WDW, which my parents have never used before. So, they were asking lots of questions about how it worked. Well, I've only done the deluxe dining before, but I thought the only difference was no appetizer so I explained to them what I thought was correct.

Candi and I had decided that we wanted to save lots of room for dinner so we decided to get something to share, grab our refillable mugs (love that they come with all the meal plans now!), and get something for James. My parents thought that sounded like a good idea and did the same - minus the meal for James, of course!

So, how I thought the meal plan worked was you got an entree, a side, a drink and a dessert. But, when we got to the counter the cashier asked me if I wanted the fruit (which I grabbed as a side) to be a snack credit or to pay for it separately. I figured I just had my information wrong and told him to make it a snack credit, while I went to find my parents and let them know I slightly misinformed them so they could decide if they wanted to put their side back or get it.

We had to wait for our entree to be prepared since it was a hot option, but by the time we got a table, grabbed a highchair and filled up our mugs our buzzer was going off alerting us to grab our food

Candi and I decided on the pepperoni flatbread (apparently all memories of our belly aches from pizza the night before had left our minds )



We also got a fruit cup as our side (which ended up being a snack)



The drink situation worked out perfectly - since we got a quick service meal it came with a drink. But, we also got our refillable mugs, so Candi and I were able to use those and for the drink with our meal we got a milk for James



For dessert I made sure to get the infamous zebra domes



My parents decided on sharing the asian salad, a piece of carrot cake and a Fuze to take back to the room for later since they also had refillable mugs to use.

So what did we think of our meal? My Mom loved the salad, my Dad didn't necessarily dislike it, but expected it to be more like the asian salad they have at Applebees so it just isn't what he was wanting. No worries though, he more than enjoyed his carrot cake and was content enough until dinner. Candi and I though our flat bread was fantastic, it had the perfect blend of cheesy and cripsy and it was gone in no time. James also stole a piece and thought it was terrific. The fruit bowl was just "eh" the grapes were really good but both the melon and cantaloupe had pieces that were cut too close to the rind for my liking, and weren't as juicy as I prefer. Overall, James didn't seem to mind and ate a good portion of it, so it did it's job. This was the first time we had ever given him strawberry milk and he had the biggest smile on his face every time he took a drink, so that was definitely a hit! And those zebra domes every raves about? Um, yeah, I really wasn't blown away by them It wasn't that they were bad, but I didn't think they were amazing either. Would I get them again? If they were on the buffet at Boma, sure! If I had to choose between those and cheesecake? Probably not! I know, I know, it's like a Dis sin not to love them!

With our bellies now full, we made our way back up to the room to relax until we needed to leave for dinner. I let my parents know what time to be ready and headed in to take a shower. Just as I was about to jump in there was a knock at the door - our luggage!! I was so thrilled that it had arrived when it did. My hair is really particular about what shampoos/conditioners it works well with, so I was kinda dreading using the H20 products. Love, love, love the shower gel but the hair products leave build up no matter how well I rinse.

This is when everything started to feel really chaotic. We wanted to try to put James down for a nap, but we couldn't find the pack 'n play. I looked in the closet, in the corners of the room, under the vanity, under the bed and it wasn't anywhere. So, I called the front desk to ask for one. She was very polite and let me know they would be happy to deliver one, but it should be on the bottom shelf of the entertainment center. Oops, didn't look there So we got that out, but now we had to move all the luggage around so we had room to set it up. We got it set-up and realized what we heard about the sheet provided being paper thin was right. No worries, I had purchased and packed our own quilted sheet for this very reason Only problem was, it didn't fit I was frustrated but there was nothing that could be done, so I just put their sheet on and then laid his fleece blanket on top of that so he wasn't laying on the scratchy, thin sheet.

Then the mad dash started to get out the bath stuff, which we thought we forgot for a minute - and I couldn't find my curling iron, my deodorant or my perfume You would have thought we had packed weeks ago and not the night before, with how forgetful we were about what was packed where.

After finding everything we needed, I jumped in the shower while Candi tried to get James down for a nap. I came out to find that the nap was a fail, but he was sitting quietly watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse - hey, I'll take what I can get! We did, however, decide that since he wasn't sleeping we would go ahead and give him a bath and then Candi would jump in the shower.

So, I got James dressed in his shorts and onesie (real shirt waits until right before we walk out the door to avoid any stains ) while Candi showered. After Candi got dressed I told him I really had to start doing my hair. So, now I'm on a manhunt to find the blow dryer. Vanity? nope! Closet? nope! Bathroom? nope! I really didn't want to sound like an idiot calling the front desk again so I checked the closet one more time and there it was hiding out in a black bag behind the ironing board. Oh! Ironing board! Hey babe, can you iron yours and Cinco's shirt?

At that point I was seriously having a minor freak out. It was about 15 minutes before we needed to leave - my hair was still wet, I didn't have my make-up done, I still needed to find my shoes and the boys needed their shirts ironed!

I tried to take a deep breathe and zone out while I blow dryed my hair. Once I finished with that (luckily it had air dryed a decent amount when I was getting James ready and whatnot) I went to curl it and the darn curling iron broke. The piece that attaches to the piece you push down came off - I know very technical but it was the piece that protects your fingers from burning so it was useless now I'm not going to lie, I was so stressed that I started crying.

Knowing there was nothing else I could do (my Mom didn't have one with her) I just threw my hair in a ponytail and started doing my make-up. I asked Candi for a time check and did my make-up at lightening speed, finishing right before my parents knocked on the door. Phew! The room is now a disaster from all the getting ready but everyone is dressed and ready and we are only about 5 minutes behind schedule


Baby flip flops are like the cutest thing ever!

We once again made our way down to the lobby, only this time we were heading to the buses





When we got to the bus stop, nobody else was there so we passed some time taking pictures




you'll see his hands in his mouth a lot since he was cutting that pesky little molar

After a few minutes the stop started to fill up, so I told everyone we needed to wait by the actual bus stop to make sure we got on (we were off to the side a little bit). I think in all it only took about 10 minutes for the bus to arrive. Everyone loaded up quickly and then we were off to the Magic Kingdom!

Last edited by ariel1025; 06-07-2012 at 03:30 PM. Reason: wrong picture
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Old 06-07-2012, 06:06 PM   #35
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Don't feel bad - you're not the 1st person on the DIS to not love the Zebra Domes. I've heard others say they didn't see what all the hype was either.

So sorry your curling iron broke as you were trying to get ready! I probably would've been stressed out & would've cried, too.

Can't wait to see where y'all were going for dinner!
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Old 06-07-2012, 10:38 PM   #36
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Great update! I like that you save the "real clothes" for right before you leave the room. Smart idea! I have never tried the Zebra Domes, but maybe I will have to--- just to see if I am a tru DISer, LOL!
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Old 06-09-2012, 08:07 AM   #37
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I enjoy the Mara too, I think they have nice offerings for a quick service. I do also like the Zebra domes, but I hate cheesecake, so to each their own!

I'm sorry getting ready was so stressful, I would have been upset if my curling iron broke too! I'm glad everything came together and you guys look great! I love that dress you are wearing, its so pretty!
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Old 06-17-2012, 02:55 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by amandaw View Post
Don't feel bad - you're not the 1st person on the DIS to not love the Zebra Domes. I've heard others say they didn't see what all the hype was either.

So sorry your curling iron broke as you were trying to get ready! I probably would've been stressed out & would've cried, too.

Can't wait to see where y'all were going for dinner!
I think that was the problem for me - they were too hyped up and I was expecting to be completely blown away

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Originally Posted by oboedm View Post
Great update! I like that you save the "real clothes" for right before you leave the room. Smart idea! I have never tried the Zebra Domes, but maybe I will have to--- just to see if I am a tru DISer, LOL!
The "real shirt" trick was learned after a couple of times learning the hard way. The little guy can figure out how to stain a shirt with water it seems

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Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post
I enjoy the Mara too, I think they have nice offerings for a quick service. I do also like the Zebra domes, but I hate cheesecake, so to each their own!

I'm sorry getting ready was so stressful, I would have been upset if my curling iron broke too! I'm glad everything came together and you guys look great! I love that dress you are wearing, its so pretty!
Thank you! I found the dress at Sports Authority ... of all places
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Old 06-17-2012, 04:05 PM   #39
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Travel Day: Part Five

Within minutes of moving over to the actual bus stop area a bus pulled up. This would be our first experience of the Disney bus system while trying to juggle a "diaper" bag (we used a cinch bag and it worked great!) and a toddler and make sure we all got on the same bus, all while trying to avoid getting trampled. I will never understand why people don't have enough manners to wait their turn in line and have to push people over to get on. Especially at AKL where there is almost always space for everyone waiting. Ugh! Anyway, I digress!

I could have sworn the bus stop sign said this bus went to Kidani, but we didn't stop there and headed straight for Magic Kingdom. That is one thing that I absolutely love about Animal Kingdom. Even though the buses are the only option for transportation, they don't share with any other resorts (just Jambo and Kidani) so I don't feel like the ride ever feels any longer than taking the bus at another resort

It only took about 15 minutes before we were pulling up in front of Magic Kingdom



Unfortunately, this was only a teaser peek at my little piece of heaven as we were only using it as a way to transfer to the monorail. After getting off the bus we quickly made our way over to the monorail area to take our final form of transportation to our actual destination. I was so excited for James to experience his first monorail ride, which is why I insisted we wait for an MK bus instead of just grabbing the first bus that pulled up at AKL and transferring to a bus at that stop. So what did James think of the awesomesauce known as the monorail? He slept! Yep, as soon as we boarded and sat down he laid his head down on Candi's shoulder and cuddled up for a nice little snooze

Before long we were pulling up to our stop - the Polynesian! As we got off I told my Dad "we have just about 15 minutes of exploration time" to which he laughed about my timeline. Oops, I guess I got a little carried away with the planning there. I guess it would have been better worded to say "before our check-in time"

Candi found a spot to snuggle up with Cinco while I took my parents downstairs to see the beautiful lobby. I really wanted to show them the grounds but the rain was starting to come down again so we just enjoyed the inside of the hotel.


This statue set (inside Boutiki) cracks me up!



Soon enough it was time to go check-in. There was quite a crowd gathered since they were checking people in for the luau inside due to the rain. Once we made our way through all them, we quickly made our way back upstairs to check-in at 'Ohanas. Candi and I ate here for the first time before our cruise in 2010 and fell in love. So, when we were going over restaurant options with my parents we were thrilled when it was in their top 3 picks!

I checked us in and then we headed over to the lounge area to wait for our buzzer to go off.




Look who decided to wake up!

James was definitely wide awake and ready to explore. So I took him over to the windows to see the "awa" outside. I love the pool area at the Polynesian and that combined with the lobby is why I hope to stay here someday!


I love the reflections

Our buzzer went off about 10 minutes after our ADR time and we were led to our table by a very nice older gentleman. He asked if we had eaten there before and since my parents had not, he explained the meaning of 'Ohana and the yummy, yummy bread as he led us to our table.

Prior to our meal I had told my parents that if the weather cooperated and James wasn't too tired (or anyone else!) we should go out to the beach afterwards to watch Wishes! It is my favorite nighttime show and I wanted to try to catch it both nights we were at WDW!

Well, that plan went right out the window after we were seated



We were seated at a perfect window seat and would be able to see Wishes perfectly right from where we were!!! Candi and I couldn't believe our luck as this was the case for us when we ate here last time as well!

It didn't take long for our server to come take our drink orders and in typical 'Ohanas fashion the food came fast and furious after that. We were promptly brought out the salad, dumplings and chicken wings before we received our drinks. Both were delicious and consumed by everyone at the table - including James!

The skewers of meat followed and although I don't remember the order they came I can tell you that I was more content with the appetizers than the main course. I'm not a seafood person so I didn't even try the shrimp, the steak was too pink for my liking and the pork had a flavor I didn't care for. However, that was just my opinion and everyone else at the table found a meat (or several) they enjoyed. I continued to eat the appetizers (which were refilled after asking) and everyone was happy. The noodles were brought out almost towards the end of the meal, which I thought was odd. And, we all loved them so were a bit disappointed that we were already so full at that point.

At some point during the meal the performing lady came out to do the maraca limbo. Candi told me to get up and take James but I was worried that if we took him out of the highchair he would fight about going back in it. The Hubs quickly set me straight (which I appreciated!) pointing out that all that was left was dessert and he could easily sit on our laps for that. So, I snatched up the baby and joined in the conga type line to have some fun with him.


My mom joined too!





After a couple rounds around the room (which the baby loved!), doing the limbo (tough stuff with a toddler in your arms ) and getting our leis we made our way back to the table.






While we were doing the dance around the restaurant I was trying to get James to do the shaka sign and he couldn't quite grasp the thumb and pinky only so he kept doing this - too cute!

In the end, I had worried for nothing as James easily went back into his highchair without a fuss. I can't believe I almost missed out on the fun we had together because I was worried about others talking about us if he had fussed when putting him back down

While we were dancing around the room I had noticed a couple other tables had french fries so I asked our waiter if we could get some for James. Although he had eaten pieces of the other food I didn't feel like he was completely full but he was refusing anymore chicken and pork. So, we finished out his meal with pasta and french fries.



Eventually, we were all (overly) full so we asked the waiter to clear our plates and let him know we were ready for dessert. Now, this is where I will point out my point of view on the wait staff. The service they gave wasn't bad - our drinks were continuously refilled and our food kept on coming. But, there was something with their demeanor/attitudes that struck a wrong chord with us. I know it was busy so they had to rush and I think that the vibe is supposed to be an "island laid back" feel. But, to us, it felt more rude/annoyed than anything else.

Ok, back to the meal ...

While waiting for dessert James spotted the lemon in Candi's iced tea and begged for it







Oh my goodness, quite possibly my favorite pictures from the entire trip! He has had lemons before and always makes a face about them and then continues to eat, but we were all hyperventilating from laughing so hard at his reaction that night!

Soon our dessert was brought out and within minutes Wishes was starting. It took a minute or two, but eventually the lights dimmed and the music was being piped into the restaurant. We all thoroughly enjoyed eating our dessert and watching the show from the comfort of our seats. And, after my highchair concerns, I pulled James out of his highchair to sit with us for the show. Back in October 2009 (when Candi wasn't sure if he was ready for kids) I had wished for a baby during Wishes from our dinner at Narcoosees - during that trip Candi said he wanted to start a family and six months later I found out I was pregnant - now Wishes holds a very special place in my heart! Since I was pregnant I have been playing the soundtrack for James and it's what he listens to every night when we put him to bed. It only felt right that this time James was sitting in my lap while holding his Daddy's hand while we watched. I said a silent prayer of thanks while a few tears fell down my face as I heard Jiminey Cricket's voice at the end

At the conclusion of the show we asked for our check and made our way back to the monorail platform. A monorail pulled up right as we got up there, but the line was cut off right at us. No biggy, as it was less than 5 minutes before the next monorail pulled up and we were on our way back to the Magic Kingdom. James stayed awake for this ride and I was beyond thrilled when he started making the "vroom" sound as the monorail took off for our destination!

We were back at MK in no time at all, but it was long enough for the skies to open and the rain to pour down. We were literally running to the bus stop (bad rule breakers, I know!) which was difficult to do in flip flops, trying to avoid James getting completely soaked. I know that the air conditioner is usually cranked on the buses and I was so worried it would get him sick to sit on there being so wet. Of course, it was a hopeless effort as we were all drenched by the time we got to the bus stop. Luckily, the line was short enough that we were able to wait in the overhang to avoid getting rained on any further. While we waited I changed James' shirt (I had an extra in the diaper bag) and dried off his hair the best I could with the extra shorts I had in there.

The first bus quickly came, but it was full so we had to wait for the second one to get on, which literally came before the first one had pulled away - score! It only took 20 minutes (including a stop at Kidani) before we were pulling up at Jambo.

When we got back to the room we gave my Mom her (late) Mother's Day gift which was breakfast at Crystal Palace the next day. So we set a meeting time to head over and then all went into our rooms to settle in for the night.

I attempted quick clean-up of the room, while Candi gave James a bath to warm him up and get all the rain water out of his hair. While cleaning I noticed that the Pack 'n play was nasty dirty. Two sides of the netting had dark brown "I don't want to know what" smeared all over it. I grabbed some baby wipes to see if it would come off and it did so I let it be. Part of me wanted to call down to guest services to get a new one, but since we didn't notice it earlier I thought perhaps Cinco got a hold of one of the chocolates or something and did it himself, so I let it be.

After James' bath we put him in the pack 'n play and turned on Mickey Mouse Club House for him. It's not a habit of ours generally, but he was pretty wired and we were hoping he would lay down while watching and it would cause him to wind down. And it worked! After I got out of the shower he was calmly sitting there smiling at the show, after a little prompting by me he laid down and by the time Candi finished his shower, James was snoring away.

At 1:03 Candi came to bed and it was lights out until morning, or at least until James woke in the middle of the night ...

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Old 06-17-2012, 04:30 PM   #40
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Great start to your trip report - subbing late but looking forward to the rest
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:02 PM   #41
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Love the update!

sounds like y'all had a very nice meal at 'Ohana even if the servers weren't very friendly. I'm looking forward to trying it for the 1st time this year. But, I have heard a lot of people saying that the service has gone downhill lately.

You story about Wishes brought a tear to my eye. That is a really sweet story & I can see why it holds such a special place in your heart.

I hope that was the last of the rain during y'alls trip!
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Old 06-21-2012, 12:02 AM   #42
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I am glad you found the bus service acceptable! We are thinking about DVC and AKL as a home resort. =)

The Wishes story made me tear up a little bit! I love it! Embarrassingly enough, we have yet to see the show! Bad DISer, I know!
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Old 06-21-2012, 09:01 AM   #43
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I've had similar experience with the waitstaff at 'Ohana. They are attentive, but always seem so rushed! I think they are under a lot of pressure to keep things moving and turn over tables, since it is such a popular restaurant and runs at 100% capacity.

That is a very sweet story about Wishes and I'm so glad your wish came true!

I hope James wasn't up for too long in the middle of the night! Our DS is a terrible sleeper away from home, so we've been there, and its not fun!
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Old 06-21-2012, 04:29 PM   #44
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Great start to your trip report - subbing late but looking forward to the rest
No such thing as late!

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Love the update!

sounds like y'all had a very nice meal at 'Ohana even if the servers weren't very friendly. I'm looking forward to trying it for the 1st time this year. But, I have heard a lot of people saying that the service has gone downhill lately.

You story about Wishes brought a tear to my eye. That is a really sweet story & I can see why it holds such a special place in your heart.

I hope that was the last of the rain during y'alls trip!
I think on our last trip the service was pretty much the same as well. But, we ignore it since we love the food so much. And, I know it's a huge demand restaurant and they need to flip tables quickly.

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Originally Posted by oboedm View Post
I am glad you found the bus service acceptable! We are thinking about DVC and AKL as a home resort. =)

The Wishes story made me tear up a little bit! I love it! Embarrassingly enough, we have yet to see the show! Bad DISer, I know!
We've never been disappointed with the bus service at AKL. Sure, it's not as fun as the boats or monorail, but, for us, we utilize them anyway going to other hotels to eat so it's not biggy

Oh goodness, you must, must, must see Wishes! Amazing show!

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I've had similar experience with the waitstaff at 'Ohana. They are attentive, but always seem so rushed! I think they are under a lot of pressure to keep things moving and turn over tables, since it is such a popular restaurant and runs at 100% capacity.

That is a very sweet story about Wishes and I'm so glad your wish came true!

I hope James wasn't up for too long in the middle of the night! Our DS is a terrible sleeper away from home, so we've been there, and its not fun!
Yeah, with how hard reservations are to get and never seeing an empty table I can only imagine the pressure they must be under.

Oh goodness, his sleeping habits on the trip were something we never, ever imagined ...
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Old 06-24-2012, 08:25 PM   #45
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Magic Kingdom Day: Part One

Ok, quick confession ... James is quite possibly the worst sleeper. Ever. At (now) 17 months he still doesn't sleep through the night consistently. And, by that I mean, if he does it once a week we consider it a huge success. We have tried numerous tricks, tactics and recommendations. Nothing works.

So, imagine my surprise when the next time I opened my eyes it was because the alarm on my phone was going off letting me know it was time to get ready for the day! I was suspicious that the little guy actually made it through the night - in a new place, in a pack 'n play - and asked Candi if the (heavenly!) beds had just knocked me out that cold. He, however, was just as amazed as me. Perhaps Disney magic isn't a work of fiction after all

In true, morning hater fashion, I hit the snooze twice before I succumbed to the reality that I must get out of bed or deal with being late. And, being late to a before-park-opening breakfast at Magic Kingdom simply wasn't an option!

We had decided the night before that I would get ready first and then while Candi got ready I would run down to purchase our park tickets to avoid doing so at the park. I grabbed my Dad so he could do the same and within only a few minutes we both had our one day park tickets for everyone. I was a little nervous about doing so because I had a decent stack of gift cards to use to purchase the tickets and I was worried they would hassle me about it. I need not had worried though, the nice CM didn't even bat an eye and even found a Sharpie to write the remaining balance on the last one I used.

When we got back upstairs I realized the magic had left our room. Candi was stressed out (read: tired) so he was slightly irritable about ... well, nothing really. He just gets that way sometimes. I don't remember what sparked it but we ended up in a little tiff right before we met my parents outside to head over to MK.

When we got out into the hallway my Dad could tell something was up and when he asked me what was wrong I snapped a little. Then I felt guilty because it wasn't his fault. Then I felt guilty that Candi and I argued to start off our day. Then I cried.

Trying to move past it all I headed out to the bus stop where we were able to board a bus within just a few minutes. Once again, we didn't stop at Kidani (clearly I was incorrect about seeing a sign that said the bus did) and we were at the Magic Kingdom in less than 20 minutes.


Looks like the rain has made an appearance again


Those skies really don't look promising

Now, when I made the reservation I made it to be before the park opened. Unfortunately, this was a morning extra magic hours so there was already quite a crowd formed when we arrived at the park - almost 15 minutes behind schedule. So much for a picture of James on an empty Main Street.


On the plus side I got to see part of the opening show for the first time ever

Candi and I had been to an early reservation previously and were told to enter through the turnstiles on the right (after security). So, that's where we lead my parents. However, after weaving through everyone to get there we were told by the CM that we had to enter through the turnstiles on the left and that we better run because they were dropping the rope in less than a minute. So, we did what anyone would do and started "running" through the crowds of people to make it to the other side to avoid missing our reservation. Ok, ok, and still try to see a (partially) empty Main Street. My poor parents. I don't think they knew what hit them. They were busy trying to take pictures and soak it all in. While we were basically dragging them by the arm and telling them to run. Once we cleared the crowds I let them know that we didn't want to miss our reservation, pay the fee for not showing up, and be without somewhere to eat. They understood.

It took about 10 seconds to be cleared to enter the park once we made it to the other entrance. And, there she was. Standing in all her glory. Welcoming everyone to the most magical, amazing place.



There is nothing like walking down Main Street for the first time on a trip. Knowing that you have so much time ahead of you. It has just begun. The magic is just beginning.

Finally, after months and months of planning I could see Cinco's reaction to my favorite place.



Yep. He slept. No clue what he was missing out on.


I'm sure he was dreaming of things just as fantastic as this.

We made our way a little closer to the castle before asking a CM where to find Crystal Palace. Yeah, it was literally right around the corner from where we were standing. Oops. We headed over and I checked in while Candi parked the stroller and my parents absorbed their surroundings.




That's his excited face - honest

Continued in next post

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