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Old 07-05-2006, 02:57 PM   #106
DarlingDumbo


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More! More! More!

I'm really enjoying your reviews!
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:02 PM   #107
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Love your reviews! Waiting for more!
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Old 07-06-2006, 09:19 PM   #108
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Episode 7: The Birthday Girl and the Hoop Dee Doo

Happy Birthday to me…Happy Birthday to me…Happy Birthday I’m at Disney…Happy Birthday to me!!!

Is there any better place to wake up on your birthday than at Walt Disney World? What could today have in store that might surpass what we’ve already done? Breakfast at Chef Mickey’s perhaps! I was SO excited to be celebrating my special day with the Big Cheese himself! The boys were up and ready around 9am, so we took a cab ride over to the Contemporary resort for our 9:30am ADR. The restaurant was extremely busy on this beautiful Sunday morning and we had to stand in line several minutes just to get to the check in desk. There were people everywhere but we managed to find some seating around the corner near a lounge type area. The chairs were comfortable and looked out to an incredible view.



We waited for about 20 minutes before deciding to go and have our family photo taken. (I don’t remember anyone mentioning that we needed to do this prior to being seated, but you do or the photos will not be ready before you have to leave.) Anyway, we continued to wait while all sorts of fun and frivolity was going on in the dining room. Growing impatient and very hungry we were seated at about 10:30am. Our table was located on the opposite side of the restaurant from the check in desk in a small, elevated room. Our server said this was a good table because the characters would be entering and exiting from this room. We quickly ordered milk, OJ and chocolate milk and spotted Minnie Mouse herself making her way up the stairs and into our area. She stopped briefly at one table and then disappeared through the back door. No worries I thought, she’ll be back in a jiffy. The guys were anxious to get started on the buffet, so we all headed out in different directions to hunt and gather. We returned with plates heaped high full of eggs, bacon, sausage, Mickey waffles, fresh fruit, biscuits and gravy, cheese blintzes, donuts and more! Yum, yum, yummy! We had barely made a dent in our breakfast when our server appeared with an adorable character placemat and a birthday cupcake complete with a lit birthday candle.



Wow, how cool! But I’m ready to see the BIG CHEESE! No sooner had I picked up my fork again and Chip stopped by to say hello and wish me a Happy Birthday! Chip was great! He asked me several times how old I was and after I finally told him, he promptly went to the neighboring table and began trying to tell them. They had no idea what was going on, but I flew out of my chair to remind Chip of his promise not to tell! The kids thought it was pretty funny and so did I!



We were able to get some good photos, but I will say that I felt cramped up against the wall at our table and had problems getting good character photos. Back to our food, which was now only lukewarm. I enjoyed the blintzes and the other standard breakfast fare. DS13 got a bagel and cream cheese, but didn’t toast the bagel so it wasn’t very good. DH had the omelet and said it was ok, but not great. They went through several Mickey waffles and lots of bacon. Minnie emerged from hiding and only stopped by for a split second for a picture with me, but none with the kids.



I was disappointed, but she was hot footin’ it out to the main area for the napkin dance. After the napkin waving subsided, I finally spotted Mickey on his way to visit me. (Yes, he was coming specifically to see me. I’m sure of it. J) Well, unfortunately Mickey was in a bit of a rush too and we didn’t really get the time with him that I had hoped. I really felt like this area of the restaurant was not the best for character interaction despite what our server said. They all seemed very busy coming or going from the main dining room. All except my pal Chip who came by a second time with Dale and were by far the most engaging characters of the morning. (Thanks Chip!)

The family photos arrived and being a sucker, I paid the $20+ for an average looking, character-less photo of the family. We settled the check and tipped our server for his attentiveness even though it was a buffet. Overall, I was a bit disappointed in this meal, but that may be due to my high expectations.

We followed up by visiting the pin trading station and then hopped the monorail over to the Magic Kingdom. (I wasn’t crazy about the Contemporary’s décor, but it sure is cool to be able to step out of your room and catch the monorail!)



For the first time in our trip, we decided to let the DS’s go their own way without us. We planned to meet at the train station in two hours, so DH and I proceeded down Main Street to shop an enjoy each others company. With 5pm reservations at the Hoop Dee Doo we all agreed to forego lunch and just snack that afternoon. The weather was starting to turn gloomy with Tropical Storm Alberto closing in, so we headed over to Aloha Isle for another Dole Whip Float. Before long it was pouring rain and we were conveniently able to duck under cover right next door. There is a covered patio area that has a few tables that made for a perfect spot to watch the rain and enjoy our luscious Dole Whips! (As I suspected, this one tasted so much better now that I was hot and ready for a snack.) People were starting to huddle under cover and we invited a nice family from the East Coast to join us at our table. It took about 20 minutes for the rain to ease up, so we enjoyed a lovely chat with them and their teenage son.

After the rain stopped I wanted to take DH on the grand circle tour of the park aboard the Disney World Railroad, so we grabbed a Coke and popcorn for the ride. Our conductor would later announce that no food or drinks were allowed on the train, but we broke the rules and tried to keep from making any messes. (Good thing the kids weren’t there!)

More touring followed and we eventually regrouped with the kids to catch the boat to Fort Wilderness.



We really enjoyed the HDDR on our last trip and were all very much looking forward to this meal. I had forgotten our tickets back at the room, but guest services at Pioneer Hall were able to quickly and easily reprint them for us.

We were allowed to enter promptly at 5pm and escorted to our pre-assigned table. Table assignments are on a first come, first serve basis and our 90-day advance ADR scored us a table on the lower floor, halfway back, all the way to the right. Not too bad, but we did have to be careful all evening not to push our chairs too far out into the aisle where the servers and performers pass back and forth.

Our server was quick to take drink orders, which were tea and cokes even though beer, wine and sangria are included with admission. Salad and bread arrived soon after and it was very good. The boys don’t eat salad, so there was more for DH and me! The warm rolls and real butter were delicious! The show started and the performers did several minutes of song, dance, skits and jokes that my boys seemed to enjoy now more than ever! There was an intermission so that they could bring up the house lights and serve the entrees. We loved the fried chicken, ribs, beans and corn! Our server stopped by frequently and brought us two more chicken breast pieces at our request. I appreciated being able to get pieces we enjoy most! Soon we were all singing and laughing again along with our delightful cast of characters and I was able to get up close and personal with one of them. During the birthday and anniversary recognition I stood up and confessed how old I was because they said you could be any age you wanted to be at Disney World. (If you’re wondering, I said 21!) Almost stuffed to the gills, the cast started their big Strawberry Shortcake number and dessert was served. Oh my heavens, delicious shortcake with tons of strawberries piled high with whipped cream! It was the perfect conclusion to a scrumptious meal. The show was funny, the atmosphere was great and the food was fabulous!

You would think this would be a good place to end such a wonderful day, but alas, it was evening EMH at the Magic Kingdom and it was still technically my birthday. So we boated back to the MK and hopped the bus back to the BCV. After a couple of hours rest, DS13 and I took to the bus back to the MK and secured our Extra Magic Hour wristbands at the main entrance around 10:45pm.



After a wild ride on Space Mountain, a near death experience on Astro Orbiters and a rather unpleasant experience on Stitch’s Great Escape, DS was in the mood for some fries. We split some fries and a chocolate milkshake from Pinocchio’s Village Haus while hanging out near the crazed mob that was waiting near the Dumbo ride. We had an incredible time hanging out together and watching the crowds dwindle as the evening wore on. We finally closed out the park with the final exclusive performance of the Country Bear Jamboree. (Thanks to the CM who got us in at 2am and still had a smile even though we were the only ones in the theater!)



We nearly had the park to ourselves and it was truly awesome being there after dark. We lingered in front of the castle and slowly walked down Main Street soaking in the beauty and majesty of truly the most magical place on Earth!

Coming next – Day 8: Soggy tacos, French pastries and a fond farewell.
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Last edited by Dustmouse; 07-06-2006 at 09:45 PM.
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Old 07-06-2006, 10:47 PM   #109
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Another wonderful day in review! The end is near and so very bittersweet! LOL
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Old 07-07-2006, 10:38 AM   #110
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Great report thanks!!
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Old 07-07-2006, 11:34 AM   #111
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Wonderful reviews... keep them coming!
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Old 07-07-2006, 01:15 PM   #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dustmouse
After a wild ride on Space Mountain, a near death experience on Astro Orbiters and a rather unpleasant experience on Stitch’s Great Escape, DS was in the mood for some fries.
May I ask what in the world happened with the near death experience on Astro Orbiters?? I love your reviews btw! They are very entertaining!
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Old 07-07-2006, 04:05 PM   #113
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashley80
May I ask what in the world happened with the near death experience on Astro Orbiters?? I love your reviews btw! They are very entertaining!
Well, it seems that I am a little too Pooh sized to ride in the same rocket ship as DS. He got in first and then I tried to squeeze in behind, but that didn't work. So I got in first and he tried to squeeze in front. That didn't work either. He basically ended up sitting on my lap which kept us from being "properly restrained" and nearly gave the boy a heart attack! His bottom was about even with the top of the ride vehicle, so that when we began to gain altitude and angle he felt like he was going to fall out. Trust me, I had him held tight, but that didn't seem to be much comfort. He loves Rockin' Rollercoaster, Tower of Terror and Space Mountain, but swears he will never ride Astro Orbiters again!

BTW - That's an adorable countdown ticker!
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Old 07-07-2006, 05:33 PM   #114
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Great reviews
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Old 07-07-2006, 05:48 PM   #115
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Thanks again! Hope you get together with the Limey's before their trip!
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Old 07-07-2006, 09:22 PM   #116
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Looking forward to the "fond farewell"...'tho I don't want it to end!! We are going in August, and your reviews are keeping me in total excitement mode!!
An awesome job! Thanks for taking the time to give such detailed reports and to take such great pics.
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Old 07-07-2006, 09:51 PM   #117
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Your reports are really the best! You make me feel as though I'm there with you.
Thanks for taking the time to share them.
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Old 07-08-2006, 05:54 AM   #118
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Still really enjoying the detailed reviews! Your boys look like a lot of fun
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Old 07-08-2006, 10:11 AM   #119
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Fantastic reviews - I love all the photos!
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Old 07-08-2006, 11:21 AM   #120
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Great reviews thanks
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