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Old 05-04-2013, 06:50 PM   #16
disneybound08
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After spending an amazing morning at Magic Kingdom we headed back to our resort for a mid afternoon break. I had forgot that as we were walking out of the park the parade had just started so we grabbed some popcorn and cotton candy and stayed to watch most of it. Here's a few pics.




Cameron had been dying to go for a swim in the pool. We got changed, filled up the mugs and headed down to the pool. Cameron was so excited to swim and more importantly to slide down that serpent tongue. He loved it! Cameron takes swimming lessons every summer but still isn't a big fan of going underwater. It was the perfect slide for a rookie swimmer. It's entry into the water is quite calm so it was just right for him.





He went at least a dozen times in a row. We also swam around the main pool to the other water features. After swimming we headed back to the room to shower and change. Cameron has super sensitive skin so he has to shower off all those pool chemicals right away or he'll develop a nasty rash. We then relaxed in the room and watched a bit of Stacey. I think Cameron likes watching Must Do Disney even more than me, he refuses to watch any other channel. Our plan was to head back to the Magic Kingdom for the evening to watch Wishes. We had to decide if we should eat at the resort or the park. Cameron wanted more beignets so we settled for the resort. Cameron got the kids spaghetti. I can't remember what Gerry and I ordered except that I got beignets for my dessert to share with Cameron. Everything was good and messy as you can see.



After that we headed to the bus stop to return to the Magic Kingdom. Again our bus stopped at all the Riverside bus stops. I believe this was because we weren't travelling at a peak time. Once arriving we headed to the Haunted Mansion. This would be Cameron's first ride. On our last trip my step daughter didn't want to ride so Cameron and I stayed with her. After about a 15 minute wait we entered the stretching room. I thought Cameron might get a bit freaked out but he was fine. I really love this ride. We all shared a doom buggy and off we went. Unfortunately our ride got stuck! We were stuck right beside the coffin/funeral scene. So the coffin lid kept lifting up on one side of us and the doors knocking/shaking/rattling on the other side. Cameron was fine though and was quoting the technical difficulty line that came over the speakers for the rest of evening. After our ride we headed towards Adventureland hoping to ride the Jungle Cruise. The wait was pretty long though so we took a tour of the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse.




Then we caught the Tiki Room show because it was just about to start. I'm glad they returned to the original show, I didn't like the one with Iago very much. After this we walked towards Casey's to grab a spot for the parade. A very nice family invited Cameron to grab a seat on the curb with them.



After the parade we headed to grab a spot over by the Crystal Palace for Celebrate the Magic. It was so incredible! I loved the show, especially the lanterns scene from Tangled. I tried to take some pictures, but I couldn't figure out the proper camera setting. So I won't post many pics from this night.




Unfortunately we couldn't stay in our spot for Wishes so we had to move further down towards Adventureland. It wasn't a great view, but I didn't want to be stuck in the crowds on Main Street. Oh well, we still enjoyed the fireworks and they were nice and early for Cameron. After the fireworks we headed out of the park, cutting through the shops to avoid some of the crowds. We caught the bus back to the French Quarter and got ourselves off to bed quickly because we were off to Epcot the next morning.

Continued in next post.
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Old 05-04-2013, 07:20 PM   #17
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Following along! Cameron is such a cutie! Can't wait to read more!
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:11 PM   #18
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On Friday morning we woke up and got ready to head to our favourite park. Can you guess which one? It's Epcot! This has always been my favourite park, and it also happens to be Gerry and Cameron's favourite too. Since we only had limited park time because of the cruise we definetly had to adjust from our usual touring plans. But we still had a fantastic day! We arrived around 8:30 and there was already a huge line at the turnstiles. I however had read on Josh's Easywdw website that the new RFID turnstiles were installed over at the far right. I left Gerry and Cameron to go and check. Sure enough they were there and they only had two other families in line. Gerry was so happy that I obsessively plan our trips reading these boards and sites like Josh's Easywdw. We lined up in front of an empty RFID scanner and we were thrilled to be first in line. We were let into the park at 8:45am and we walked quickly towards Test Track. Yes, we walked quickly, but given that we had a pair of tiny six year old legs with us I figured it would take us a bit to get there. Surprisingly enough we were the first ones there! Gerry ran up to grab us some fast passes to use later and then we went inside. We went straight to the design stations and got to work. Cameron loved designing his car.



Then we hopped on the ride. Cameron was thrilled to see the results of his car. Overall I'm unsure if I really like the new test track. Although its cool to design and test your own car, I really miss the old crash test dummy theming of the previous ride, and the extreme heat/cold testing portion. Anyways it wasn't hard to imagine that my tech obsessed boy declared the new Test Track to be his new favourite ride. A large change from our last trip where Journey to Imagination took the top spot in his heart. After our ride we breezed through the games/activities ( planning to hit those later after with our fast passes ) and we headed towards the Land.

We rode Soarin with less than a 10 minute wait. Gerry and Cameron sat in the front row. Nothing beats the view from the front row. We checked our watches and it was time to grab more fast passes. This time we grabbed a set for Soarin. Can you believe it wasn't even 10am and we had rode both Test Track and Soarin plus we had fast passes for both! After our magical flight over California we headed towards the Imagination pavilion. As we were boarding the CM was asking us if this was our first ride of the day. She was shocked to find out that we had already rode Test Track and Soarin, plus had fast passes for both. I adore Figment, and love that ride. Cameron still thinks that every time we pass through the smell lab that a different smell might be picked. He was reading all the different labels on the tanks, and saying maybe next time the skunk won't win. Don't we all wish this would actually happen.





After singing our hearts out with our favourite purple dragon, we headed back to use our fast passes at Test Track. We stopped for a couple pictures along the way and cut through Radiator Springs done up Flower and Garden style.





Once we arrived at Test Track my husband was very happy with my planning when he saw the time posted for the standby line for Test Track was already 45 minutes. We designed another car, although from what I've read on the boards this doesn't usually happen when you use fast pass. This one had a law enforcement theme and we rode again.



This time we explored all the games and things afterwards. We still had some time to kill before our Soarin fast passes were valid so I decided to take the boys to Ellen's Energy Adventure. I know, a strange choice but I was really looking forward to just sitting for a while. It was funny to hear how many times the CM mentioned the length of the attraction, saying over and over that once you boarded the vehicle you could not leave. Anyways Cameron really enjoyed the attraction. As I've mentioned, he loves science and technology and was learning about different forms of energy at school, so he really liked it. Plus we love Ellen, even though the attraction is horribly outdated. Yikes they really should do something about this attraction. Gerry said he had a nap although I'm not sure I believe him.



Cameron was hungry so we grabbed a donut from the stand outside and then we walked over to Soarin. We took another flight over California, this time we had back row, and then we were ready for lunch. Where would we eat? Sunshine Seasons of course! I had the salmon, Gerry had the pork chops and Cameron got the chicken leg. We got carrot cake and chocolate mousse cake to share between the three of us. Mmmmmm I love that chocolate mousse cake. What adventures would we explore after lunch?

Continued in next post.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:25 PM   #19
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Cameron is so cute!
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Following along! Cameron is such a cutie! Can't wait to read more!
Thanks, I think he's pretty cute too, but as his mother I thought maybe I was a bit biased.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:28 PM   #20
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I can hardly wait to hear what he thinks when you surprise him with the cruise! I have always wanted to pull off a surprise like that but man I am just not good at keeping secrets when I am so excited myself!
Only one more update and then I will be posting about the big surprise. It was such a great surprise! Can't wait to share it with you guys!
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Old 05-19-2013, 06:25 PM   #21
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After finishing up our fabulous lunch at Sunshine Seasons, we had one more must do to complete. Any guesses? Well we were heading off to save the world with our favourite secret agent platypus. We went up to booth to register and pick up our old school tech device. We were given the option of the United Kingdom or China. We had done the China mission back when the adventure was themed with Kim Possible so we took off towards the United Kingdom. Phineas and Ferb is definitely one of Cameron's favourite shows, and I would have to say its one that I actually like to watch with him.








The mission was super awesome. Cam had a great time and it actually took quite awhile to finish the mission. There were tons of secret devices hidden along the way. I always think its so neat when you have to interact with the shop keeper CMs to receive your next clue. Yes, evil is our cup of tea. After saving the world from Dr. Doofensmirtz, Cameron was begging to go swim again. We wandered slowly back through Canada and Future World.



We stopped for a photopass pic and then headed back to the bus stop.



After a quick ride we were back at Port Orleans French Quarter. Gerry was going to do some laundry while Cameron and I took a walk over to the Riverside swimming hole. It really is a beautiful stroll along the river between the two resorts. We stopped for some photos along the way.





Since I was by myself I didn't take any pictures in the pool. I was really happy that we came over though. The theming at the pool is really neat and the slide is much faster compared to French Quarter. I would really recommend taking advantage of swimming at both resorts. The pool at Riverside was awesome and I wished we had gone swimming there more than once during our trip. We thought about catching the boat back to our resort but they were really busy so we just took our time and strolled back to the French Quarter. We went swimming again and of course Cameron took numerous slides down the serpent slide as well. By this time Gerry was finished with the laundry so we got ready and headed to Downtown Disney. We decided to take a bus there instead of the boat, because they seemed really busy when we had been at Riverside earlier. Once we arrived we headed straight to Wolf Gang Puck Express. It was so good! Gerry and I both had the macaroni and cheese, and Cameron had the spaghetti. Gerry got cheesecake for dessert and I got the creme brle. It was delicious! After that we did some shopping at the World of Disney and then we caught the boat back to the resort. It was a lovely ride along the river and our captain shared numerous interesting facts along the way.





Gerry decided to take a soak in the hot tub and it was filled with a bunch of guys. After chatting with them he discovered that they were all from Canada. I think that most of them were from the East Coast. Cameron played on the play structure while we waited. Then we used up our credits at the arcade that were included in our package.





After that we grabbed drinks in our mugs and headed back to the room. This was our last night at the resort. We would be heading to the Disney Dream tomorrow! But first we would need to reveal the big surprise to Cameron! Continued in next post
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Old 05-24-2013, 05:36 PM   #22
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Loving the trip report and all the pics. We're thinking of doing the same thing next year, land/sea and staying at POR before the cruise. I know you aren't finished posting yet, but what did you think about the land / sea experience overall? Did you feel you had "enough" time for both WDW and the cruise to enjoy both? We're used to week long trips at WDW so I am hoping we don't feel cheated only going for 4 days!

Looking forward to reading how your son took the news of the cruise. How fun!
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Old 05-29-2013, 05:32 PM   #23
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Can't wait to hear how the big reveal goes!
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:58 PM   #24
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Loving the trip report and all the pics. We're thinking of doing the same thing next year, land/sea and staying at POR before the cruise. I know you aren't finished posting yet, but what did you think about the land / sea experience overall? Did you feel you had "enough" time for both WDW and the cruise to enjoy both? We're used to week long trips at WDW so I am hoping we don't feel cheated only going for 4 days!

Looking forward to reading how your son took the news of the cruise. How fun!
We enjoyed both portions of the trip but we went in knowing that we wouldn't be able to do it all during the park portion of the trip. The last time we visited we had seven park days and we visited at the end of of August when crowd levels were much lower. We knew that we would not be commando touring either. Cameron would be walking this trip (last trip we had a stroller) and we wanted to enjoy our experience. Some of our favourite trip memories are from the resort or other places on property. We went to each park with a plan of must dos and maybe dos. I would have to say we were quite satisfied with everything we saw on our park days. I think we were least satisfied with what we got done at Animal Kingdom, but that was at the end of our trip right in the middle of March break crowds. Overall it was a good experience but I think we will plan separate trips in the future. The cheapskate in me can't stand the cost of airfare though. Pros and cons to most every decision though.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:59 PM   #25
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Can't wait to hear how the big reveal goes!
It was awesome, I will be posting the update later tonight
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Old 06-02-2013, 07:00 PM   #26
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Well we woke up around 7 on Sunday morning, we were too excited to sleep! We were going on the Disney Dream today!! But first we had a rather large surprise to take care of, Cameron didn't know about the cruise, so we planned out the big reveal. We had considered not telling him until we arrived at the port, but since we were taking Disney transfers that wouldn't really work. So we decided to ask him to double check the tags on our luggage to verify that they were heading to the 'right resort'. When Disney sent our Magical Express tags for the first part of our stay, they were incorrect, so we had to call and get new ones sent. Last night after Cameron was asleep, Gerry attached the Disney Dream tags to our luggage and placed them near the door. Cameron thought that we were just switching resorts today to Pop Century (we would be after our cruise) Since we had the luggage tag mix up at home we told him that we should double check our tags. So Cameron headed over to check them out. He read out loud "Disney Dream" and looked puzzled. I said, "Are you sure? I don't know any resorts at Disney World called Dream." He said, "Look, Disney Dream." I was surprised that he hadn't caught on by this point. So Gerry said, "that's because we're going on The Disney Dream, we're going on a Disney Cruise" Then the biggest smile ever started to spread across his face.







The rest of the morning consisted of Cameron repeating over and over again "I can't believe we're going on the Disney Dream!" After that we headed over to breakfast. We brought the balloon with us that Cameron had received from another child. We glanced around the restaurant looking for another family to give the balloon. Cameron had decided that it should be a boy. Sorry to any girls who were eating at Sassaougla on March 10th. We were hoping to find a family with just one child, but we didn't have any luck. We ended up handing the balloon to a family with two boys. One looked a bit older than Cameron, and looked a bit younger. Pixie dust complete, we grabbed some breakfast and ate. After that we headed back to the room to get ready. As we arrived back at our room they were picking up our luggage. We finished getting ready, then we headed out to take some pictures around our beautiful resort.











At eleven o'clock we headed to our room to pick up our carry on bags and check out. We then headed to the lobby to use up our last remaining snack credits. Cameron and I had beignets of course. The transfer bus was due to pick us up at noon, if I remember correctly. So we didn't have long to wait, especially since the clocks had went ahead one hour last night because of daylight savings.



Soon our bus pulled up and we were on our way. The bus stopped once more and then we were on our way.



Cam loved the ride and I chatted with another family about pin trading. Soon we saw this out the window.



We arrived at the port around 1:20 pm.



The lines weren't long so we quickly checked in and headed towards the line to get our photos taken. Yikes what an awful picture it turned out to be. We boarded the ship, had our family name called out and were shocked by the beauty and grandeur of the lobby area.



Although I had seen many pictures they simply can't do the space any justice at all. Wow is all I can say. By this time the staterooms were open, so we headed straight to our room. It was much bigger than we had expected.



I have to apologize that I don't have many pictures of the first day. Our family doesn't do well when we're hungry and it was a bit of a disaster after boarding the ship. I thought that given the time change and the fact that we had a large snack before boarding the bus we could wait and have a late lunch on board the ship. Perhaps this works for other families, but it didn't work for us. We ended up with grumpy, hungry family members having mini meltdowns. Fun, fun, fun. Being overwhelmed getting on the ship and not being sure where everything was and starving we headed out to register Cameron for kids club and grab something to eat. We quickly picked up the bracelet for Cameron. I had registered online at home. Then we headed up to Cabanas. We quickly grabbed some food and ate. Even though it was fairly late there were still a lot of people at the buffet. After eating we headed down to check out the open house at the oceaneers club and lab. Wow, what an awesome space for kids. Then we headed back to our room to verify our station for the muster drill. Our location was the theatre so we headed there once we heard the announcement. The drill was very efficient and it didn't take long. Next up was the sail away party, we headed up to deck 12 and found a spot off to the side.



It is nice to watch from the higher deck but all the action is definetly down below on the pool deck. Gerry ended up ordering a bucket of beer for the duration of the trip. I forget the exact amounts but he ended up getting a few beer 'free' doing it this way. I wasn't aware of the fact that Gerry had wanted to drink beer on the trip. If I had known this I would have had some delivered to our resort and carried them on board. Oh well, live and learn. The beer was delivered to our room later that evening. The party wasn't really capturing our interest from the higher deck so we headed back to our room to watch the ship finish sailing out of the channel.





Then we got changed for dinner. As we were getting ready the captain came on with an announcement. Basically we were going to hit some rough seas up ahead. He stated that the ship would be quite rocky from about 6pm to 10pm tonight. He said you would feel the ship rocking and you may hear the ship creaking, groaning and cracking. He said it was nothing to be alarmed about, that this ship was the best ship he had ever sailed. Yikes! I had read these boards before our trip and had read the reports where people experienced that really bad sailing where windows were broken, stuff fell off the store shelves, etc. I will admit it freaked me out. Plus I became a bit concerned about seasickness. We headed to Animators Palate for dinner.



Just as we were heading down to dinner the ship started to sway. You could actually see the water tipping back and forth in our glasses. Cameron and I started to feel ill almost immediately. Needless to say it was a difficult dinner. We were seated at an eight top table. Our tablemates arrived and then departed? I guess they had wanted to eat alone. They spoke to the head waiter and they were moved. So for the remainder of the cruise we ate alone at an eight top table. The ship continued rocking and being in a restaurant with no windows didnt help matters. We forced ourselves to eat, thinking it might make us feel better, but no luck. I took only two pictures and I don't remember what we ate. After dinner Cameron wanted to visit a club even though he felt horrible. He was just so excited to go. Cameron is quite shy, so I thought he should go before he changed his mind. So we dropped him off at the club and headed up to the room. A coworker had given me a pair of seabands before we left so I slipped them on, they seemed to help. After about a half hour we picked up Cameron from the club and headed to the theatre for the Golden Mickeys. We sat in the balcony. As we sat I applied pressure to Cameron's wrists to see if it would make him feel better. He said it did, so I slipped the bands on him. The curtains for the show were swaying back and forth like crazy as we waited. As they were interviewing people before the show the cast kept mentioning /asking about the rough seas. This leads me to believe that it was much rougher than it normally is, although I have nothing to compare it to. The show began and it was wonderful. I loved it! Cameron however fell asleep about 10 minutes in. When the show ended, we went to wake up Cameron but he wouldn't wake up. I think he was just exhausted from the excitement of the day and feeling sick from the swaying. The usher actually asked us if he was ok and if he needed to visit the infirmary. We said he was fine just extremely sleepy. Gerry decided it would be best to just carry Cameron out of the theatre so he picked him up. As he was lifting him though his leg got stuck in the chair. I freed the leg and we carried on. Cameron was still sleeping. We thought we would take the elevator up to the seventh floor but it was crazy busy so Gerry carried Cameron up three flights of stairs to our room. Not an easy task. We headed to the room, put Cameron into bed and I laid down. Gerry headed back to the shops to see if he could buy another set of seabands for me. He found some so I put them on and went straight to sleep. I couldn't tell you how rough it was for the remainder of the evening, I never woke up once. Those beds are so comfortable! Overall we had an eventful first day on board the Dream. But we were really looking forward to the remainder of our stay on board and it did not disappoint. Continued in next post.
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Old 07-20-2013, 07:03 PM   #27
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Morning at Nassau

Sorry for the lack of postings, I taught right up until the end of June so the last month of school was exhausting. No big plans for the summer but it's quickly slipping through my fingers.
Anyways when we left off last Cameron and I went to bed feeling really sick from the rough waters the night before. We all had an excellent sleep though and felt much better. Despite this we continued to take our Gravol ginger chews for the remainder of the cruise. Just to be safe. We woke up just in time to see the sun rising as we were pulling into Nassau. We sat out on the balcony and took it all in. It was amazing. We took some pictures pulling into port and then put on our swim suits under our clothes.







We headed down to Cabana's for a tasty breakfast. After munching on breakfast Cameron and I took a bunch of rides down the Aqua Duck with zero wait time. I think we rode 7 or 8 times, and the longest we waited was one minute. Gerry actually ran into a guy that he works with. Lots of folks on our cruise were either from Ontario or Texas it seemed. They had a quick chat while Cameron and I finished riding. After that we went from a quick swim in both pools and took a dip in the hot tub while Cameron rode the Mickey Slide. I can't believe we took no pictures of him on the slide. There were no crowds at all that morning and we had a great time. After we were finished swimming we headed back to our room to change and shower.
We then decided to explore the ship by completing a mission in the Mid Ship Detective Game. Cameron absolutely loved this game, and it was an awesome way for us to explore the ship.











We then decided to grab an early lunch and then head out to explore Nassau on foot. Since it was our first cruise we didn't want our schedule wrapped up in excursions. We wanted lots of time to experience everything on board. We grabbed some fast food items at Mater's grill.





This boy was very happy to eat hot dogs and pizza. After exploring the map provided we figured we would venture out to the rum cake factory. So off the ship we went. It was a very short walk and not too many people bothered us, we did get asked if we wanted a taxi about 60 times during the five minute walk but that was about it. We politely declined and that driver would leave us alone until we passed another. Arriving at the factory we took a couple obligatory tourist snapshots and headed back towards the ship stopping for some photos along the way.













I think we were back on the ship by 130. So we still had a full afternoon and evening ahead of us on the beautiful Disney Dream. Hopefully I will post the next update tonight as well. Thanks again for waiting so patiently for the last update.
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Old 07-22-2013, 02:46 PM   #28
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Loving your report so far. We too are thinking about doing a land and sea trip next May, so I'm anxious to see the rest of your report.
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Old 07-23-2013, 05:05 PM   #29
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Afternoon Day 2 Cruise

Like I had said we were back on the ship early afternoon so we had lots of time to explore. Gerry decided he wanted to go see a movie in the Buena Vista Theatre so off he went. He thought he was seeing the a vampire movie but he wasn't, he saw Lincoln, the movie about the president, oh well, it was still a movie, so he sat and watched the whole thing.

Cameron and I did a bit more detective agency clues and then we stopped off for an ice cream break.












After our ice cream Cameron decided that he wanted to go back to the club. I think I had forgot to mention that he visited last night for about 45 minutes (after dinner until just before the Golden Mickeys) Poor guy felt so sick but he wanted to go so bad. So I dropped Cameron off at the club and I actually had an hour to myself on the ship. I honestly didn't know what to do with myself. I'm never alone. As I mentioned earlier I'm teacher so I spend my days hanging out with 25 four and five year olds, then I pick up Cameron after school and hang with him. Gerry works shifts so his schedule is a bit unpredictable. Anyways I should have done something awesome with my alone time, but I didn't know what to do. I can't even remember, I know I walked around the bar areas, and had a coffee at the Vista Caf, I'm sure I could have found better things to do, but whatever.

At 3:30 the Disney friends would be meeting in the Atrium, and Mickey on the balcony so I picked up Cam from the club and we headed down. Along the way we met some friends and they were gracious enough to let us have a picture. Cameron is such a shy little guy, that when Belle called him 'prince' he blushed. You can actually see his rosy cheeks in the picture. This picture ended up being one of my favourites from the trip.







After our chance encounters we lined up about 325, there was only a few families ahead of us.











Then we swept upstairs to join Mickey's line, which was only about an eight minute wait.





After meeting the big cheese himself we headed down to the Open House at the Oceaneers Club. It started at 4 so we made it just in time.



Let me just say this was incredible. Wow those CM's sure do incredible things with so much energy. Professor Make O Mess was so AMAZING! Cameron loved every second of the show! And so did I! Flubber in hand we met Gerry and got changed for dinner.



Our dinner tonight was at Enchanted Garden. What a beautiful restaurant and the scallops were so tasty.





After dinner we lined up to have our portraits done. I was planning on buying the CD so I wanted to get my monies worth. The pictures turned out beautifully. It was definetly worth the cost.











After pics we changed and then headed off to see Villians tonight. It turned out to be my least favourite of the three but I still really enjoyed it, and Cameron actually stayed awake so that was great too! After our busy day we headed back to the room and drifted off to sleep easily. Those beds were the most comfortable we have ever slept on.
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Old 07-23-2013, 05:08 PM   #30
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Loving your report so far. We too are thinking about doing a land and sea trip next May, so I'm anxious to see the rest of your report.
Thanks for following along, we loved our trip and can't wait to go again. We rave about Disney to anyone who will listen
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