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Old 09-12-2013, 07:16 PM   #16
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Old 09-12-2013, 08:12 PM   #17
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Hey girl!! I'm here. Can't wait to see all your pics from your trip and hear all the stories. I saw some on facebook but I love hearing the report along with it. Sounds like you are off to a great start. Getting to stay at the GF, lucky girl. I'm totally jealous and seriously considering a career change
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:08 AM   #18
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AHHHHH The Grand Floridian!! I'm in love!! What a gorgeous resort!! How magical that you got to stay there!!

Goodness...I don't think I will be ready for how much has changed since I've been there last...even longer than you, June 2011! CRAZY! I'm glad tap to touch is pretty easy though.

I'm glad that you were able to squeeze in some Splash...I LOVE going on with people who don't know when the drop is. So funny.

Can't wait for the tours!!
Has it really been that long?? Wait til you see New Fantasyland. You're going to love it!

Are you going to be in Epcot 10/22? We'll be there!

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You're right, that is the best sign that ever stood...and I own a sign shop...so I'm an expert.
So you would know!

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The GF lobby is gorgeous! I never get tired of Splash either! It's such a long, great ride. Augh, I hate getting stuck on rides, but it doesn't sound like Pirates was too bad.
That FL rain! Short but fierce! Glad you had time to dry off!
GF is a very pretty resort. I ended up liking it more than I thought I would. I'm glad I was able to stay there.

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Hey girl!! I'm here. Can't wait to see all your pics from your trip and hear all the stories. I saw some on facebook but I love hearing the report along with it. Sounds like you are off to a great start. Getting to stay at the GF, lucky girl. I'm totally jealous and seriously considering a career change
Hi Crystal! I took around 500 pictures so there are plenty to look at. The funny thing is I wasn't even excited when they told us we were staying at GF. I never had any desire to stay there but I quickly changed my tune. Beautiful place!
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:48 AM   #19
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Polynesian & Boardwalk

Lorraine and I headed over to the convention center to meet the rest of our group. There were about 50 of us in total Ė mostly all women and two guys. Our group leaders were Rita and Tommy. Both were very nice but Rita talked a bit too much about herself IMO (no offense but I really donít need to hear about your grandkids over and over again!). Tommy was fabulous and full of information. We picked up another welcome packet Ė this one included a water bottle, a poncho, and an earpiece that was to be used during our tour. They split us up into Mickeys and Minnies. We fell into the Mickey group which meant Tommy would be our tour guide during the site inspections.

At 4 pm we boarded our bus and headed over to our first resort, the Polynesian. Originally we were supposed to be touring Coronado Springs but they were filled due to a convention so they switched us at last minute. The Polynesian is my dream resort so I didnít mind one bit!

Welcome to the Poly



First things first: the CMs at the Poly taught us a hula dance. Now Iím not really a shy person but the entire lobby was watching us. Iím sure thereís a video floating around of us somewhere.



After that we began our tour. It started raining a bit again but nowhere near as bad as when we were at the MK.

The marina



I can see my house from here!  I wish.



Just look at those cloudsÖ



The rooms were recently refurbished. Pretty nice IMO.









After our tour we headed back to the bus and headed to the Boardwalk! Creepy clown pool aside this is a gorgeous resort and you canít beat the location. I think I have my eye on this resort for our next stay. I didnít get a picture of it but I really loved that the doors going into the rooms looked like you were outside a house. So cute!



Iíve been to the real Lucy!





Creepiest chair ever!



We toured the villa side first. Here is a 1 BR.











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Old 09-13-2013, 10:50 AM   #20
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More Boardwalk & Illuminations

Studio. If anyone would like to rent points to me for next November Iíd love you forever! 



Ack!









I just love this whole area.





Next we were taken to the Inn side and viewed a standard room.



Gotta love the view!





I had assumed we were going to walk to Epcot for dinner since it was so close but they loaded us back into the bus & took us through the employee entrance. It was interesting to see each of the World Showcase buildings from the backside but at the same time it kills the magic a bit. We werenít allowed to take any pictures of anything backstage so sorry guys! We arrived at our destination Ė the American Pavilion. We went in through a back entrance and they showed us to a private ballroom area which I didnít even know existed! We helped ourselves to a glass of wine & a buffet of hot food. I remember there was pasta because it was delicious! We had a little presentation during our dinner and then it was off to the UK for a dessert party & viewing of Illuminations. I donít remember exactly what desserts we had except for a kiwi turnover. I had two of those because they were so good. We stuffed ourselves and chatted until it was time for the show. We had a prime viewing area.















After Illuminations we all headed back to the Grand Floridian on our bus. It had been a long day so we turned in for the night. Stay tuned for day 2 Ė a tour of New Fantasyland, more site inspections, and dinner at Chef Mickeyís!
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Old 09-13-2013, 02:20 PM   #21
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looks like a fun touring day, to bad you didnt have on secret agent spy glasses that took pictures when you blinked.
could have got some good behind the scene pictures.
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Old 09-13-2013, 04:43 PM   #22
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Hi! It's me Kimberly from the Awesomesauce FB group! Loving your TR so far! Beautiful resorts I'd love to see them in person let alone stay at one! Can't wait to see & read more!
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Old 09-14-2013, 09:41 AM   #23
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looks like a fun touring day, to bad you didnt have on secret agent spy glasses that took pictures when you blinked.
could have got some good behind the scene pictures.
I need to work on those glasses for next time!

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Hi! It's me Kimberly from the Awesomesauce FB group! Loving your TR so far! Beautiful resorts I'd love to see them in person let alone stay at one! Can't wait to see & read more!
Hi! It doesn't get much better than the Disney resorts. So much detail in each and every one of them.
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Old 09-15-2013, 02:12 AM   #24
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YAY! I love your tours! That must've been so fun! I love looking at pictures of them all, but I think being there in person would be so much better! I am dying to attend a dessert party, anywhere really, so my envy is pretty great at this moment!
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Old 09-15-2013, 10:53 AM   #25
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The rooms at the Poly look much better after the refurb-- I thought they were pretty dated before, honestly. If I was going to stay in the Epcot area (and wanted ME/the dining plan/no Swalphin), the Boardwalk is definitely where I'd stay. It's SO beautiful!
Wow, that is an amazing view of Illuminations!!
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Old 09-16-2013, 11:47 AM   #26
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YAY! I love your tours! That must've been so fun! I love looking at pictures of them all, but I think being there in person would be so much better! I am dying to attend a dessert party, anywhere really, so my envy is pretty great at this moment!
You have to do a dessert party! It was delicious. Kris was jealous I got to go. I think I'm going to talk him into the Wishes dessert party next trip. I'm sure I won't have to twist his arm!

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The rooms at the Poly look much better after the refurb-- I thought they were pretty dated before, honestly. If I was going to stay in the Epcot area (and wanted ME/the dining plan/no Swalphin), the Boardwalk is definitely where I'd stay. It's SO beautiful!
Wow, that is an amazing view of Illuminations!!
My co-worker always described the Poly as 'Brady Bunch goes Hawaiian' I really like the refurb rooms. Very nice! There was no balcony in that room though so if I ever stayed there I'd have to request one. I love balconies!
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Old 09-17-2013, 01:27 AM   #27
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You have to do a dessert party! It was delicious. Kris was jealous I got to go. I think I'm going to talk him into the Wishes dessert party next trip. I'm sure I won't have to twist his arm!
I found absolutely NO availability my whole trip and I've pretty much been crying every day since. I almost cancelled the whole thing! JK...but not about the crying part.

Seriously though. It is quite unfortunate. I will go one day! OR JUST THROW MY OWN DANG DESSERT PARTY!! (You, of course, will be on the VIP list.)
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Old 09-17-2013, 04:17 PM   #28
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I found absolutely NO availability my whole trip and I've pretty much been crying every day since. I almost cancelled the whole thing! JK...but not about the crying part.

Seriously though. It is quite unfortunate. I will go one day! OR JUST THROW MY OWN DANG DESSERT PARTY!! (You, of course, will be on the VIP list.)
Let's have our own dessert party in Epcot during my port day. It has to be early because I have to be back on the ship by 9. We can invite Boyz II Men.
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Old 09-18-2013, 10:02 AM   #29
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New Fantasyland

The next morning we were up bright and early for a 7:45 breakfast in the convention center. At 8:15 we got on the bus and headed over to the Magic Kingdom for our tour of New Fantasyland! Again we were taken through the CM entrance and entered the park near Tomorrowland Terrace. I’ve never been in the MK when there was no one else around.



My lens was fogging up due to the humidity so it gives this picture a magical quality.



We headed toward New Fantasyland and Beast’s Castle. The Mine Train is really coming along. We are planning a trip for fall of next year and I’m excited that it will be open!





We were lucky enough to get a private tour of Be Our Guest before it opened. It wasn’t finished last time I was there and this restaurant is absolutely gorgeous! I love it. I need to try for a reservation next year. I’m not sure how I would like eating in the West Wing though – very dark!





These guys talk! It was hard to understand what they were saying but I heard a lot of sniffing & rumbling about the food.



This is the library. When you have lunch here it’s a CS – you’d place your order here (or if you’re not tech savvy at the counter with a CM), you pick a seat, and the food is then delivered to your table.



The ballroom. You can’t tell from the picture but through those windows there is snow falling! Really adds to the ambience.



I believe this section is called the gallery…







This is the West Wing. The pictures didn’t turn out great because it’s so dark in there. This picture is awesome because it’s the prince but when the lightning flashes it changes to the Beast! Similar to the pictures in the Haunted Mansion.



The enchanted rose.



After our tour of BoG we were shown the rest of New Fantasyland. I love this little courtyard area. Later in the trip I stopped at Gaston’s Tavern to get a Lefou’s Brew. Delicious!





Spoiled brat alert.



We also stopped in Storybook Circus. This was open last year and I took tons of pictures of it then so I didn’t bother this time. We were shown the interactive queue for Dumbo as well. I was hoping they’d take us on Dumbo but no such luck! After that we headed out of the park. On the way out we saw Push who promptly called us the paparazzi and made these girls pose for us.



Back to the bus we went & headed to Grand Floridian’s convention center. Seminar for three hours (zzzz) and then site inspections! Join me next time as we visit Fort Wilderness, Wilderness Lodge, and the Contemporary. Stay tuned!
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Old 09-18-2013, 01:45 PM   #30
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Loving reading about such a different type of trip! I'm super jealous that this is part of your job!!
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