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Old 02-06-2010, 02:47 PM   #1
Groucho
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Groucho? 11 days? Beach Club? 4-year & 8-month-old? Tons of pics? Yes! (finally done)

OK, I'm going to try to do a more "full" trip report this time to accompany my "live" trip report from the Photography section (where I usually hang out).

The players: My wife, Jack (almost 5 years old and a seasoned veteran), and Leila (8 months old and fulfilling the conventional wisdom about second children!)

The situation: we have been going annually for a few years now. My son and I are most into it and my wife loves it but I'm the one who does all the planning, keeps up with Disney park news, etc.

The place: Beach Club Villas studio. (I decided to save points instead of our usual half-one-bedroon, half-studio stay.) January 23rd through February 2nd.

The gear: One tired, Disney-worn stroller. Lots of diapers. Not quite enough baby formula. Outlandish piles of camera gear. (See the live TR for photos of the gear. Photo nuts might recognize some of the key words... fisheye... F1.2... Lensbaby... etc.)

On Saturday the 23rd, we said our goodbyes to the cold and frost...



...and headed to the airport. We were boarding our Airtran flight when I heard the person at the counter say, "oh, you'll have Captain Mad Dog today! Maybe he'll play his harmonica for you." Ohhhhh kay.... We get onboard and sure enough, we hear harmonica music over the PA system, then Captain Mad Dog begins singing an airplane-themed parody of Bad to the Bone.

We settled in, trying to keep Leila under control - she was flying as a lap baby, and of course, the person sitting in front just has to recline his seat as far as possible to make sure whoever is holding the baby has as little room as possible. Jack amuses himself with our PSP...



...and finally Leila falls asleep.



We touch down, Jack says "thank you Captain Mad Dog" as we leave, and we make our way through MCO to the Magical Express.





We're always had pretty good luck with ME, and after just a moment, we were sent onto a waiting bus. They've changed it slightly; you now no longer need to wait in the long line to see a counterperson before queueing up for the bus itself, as long as you have your ME booklet.



We stopped at a few other resorts, including Boardwalk...



...before arriving at Beach Club. Last time we stayed there, we were lucky enough to get a top-floor Epcot view, with a great view of Spaceship Earth. Not so lucky this time - Epcot view but only second floor, so just trees. One interesting thing was that we had a ridiculously huge L-shaped balcony; here's the long part.



It was getting late by now so after dropping our carry-on luggage, we headed for our tradition first & last trip - Magic Kingdom. It was almost 7pm when we arrived. Before going in, we headed to a counter to do something I've never done before... buy annual passes! With the DVC discount, it was cheaper to just buy them there rather than online and pay shipping.





We were hungry so we headed straight for one of my favorite CS locations on properly, the Columbia Harbour House. I usually get the tuna but I was craving clam chowder so I tried that. It was great! I also always get the mini apple pie for dessert - it was yummy as always.





First stop after that was the Haunted Mansion. This is my all-time favorite ride and Jack loves it also; he always demands to listen to the music in the car and loves looking at any HM-related pictures, video, or books that we have. Well - he's gone from being totally fearless in his younger days to being a bit of a scaredy-cat now! He was terrified and did not want to ride it in the dark, even knowing full well that it was pretend lightning. He said he'd ride it in the morning, so I didn't push him - I don't want to be one of those parents who is dragging a screaming, crying kid onto a ride.

We decide to move on and on Jack's insistence, Leila's first-ever Disney ride was It's a Small World. Well, OK, I think we went one or two trips without riding it, so I guess we could survive.









As we got off, Wishes was about half-way done and we watched from Fantasyland. Afterwards, the area was pretty smokey for a couple minutes.



Next stop... Jack & I on Dumbo while my wife changed Leila's diaper.



I should have had a wider lens here, but oh well, maybe next time.



Continued...
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upcoming trips: WDW 11/20-12/2/2014, D23 Destination D!
trip reports: 1/11, Animal Kingdom Villas live TR, full TR (up to day 4); 6/10, Star Wars Weekend, Pop Century; 1/10, Beach Club Villas full TR, live TR; 1/09, Old Key West; 4/08, Beach Club Villas; 9/07, Disneyland Hotel; 1/07, Saratoga Springs Resort

groucho.org gallery (main site) - Flickr - Google+ Pentax Photo Gallery - Pentax Auto 110, H3, 2x Spotmatic, 3x K1000, red K-x, K-5, K-3, Q, WG3
Pentax 10-17mm fisheye, 16-50mm F2.8, 18-55mm, 31mm F1.8, 50mm F1.2/F1.4/F1.7/F2.0, 50-135mm F2.8, 50-200mm, 55-300, Zenitar 16mm fisheye, Lensbaby Composer, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Lester A Dine 105mm F2.8 1:1 macro, F Nikkor 105mm F2.5, M42: Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro, Pentax 35mm F3.5, 55mm F1.8, 105mm F2.8, 2x 135mm F3.5, 300mm F4, 2x Vivitar 200mm F3.5, Carl Zeiss 135mm F3.5

Last edited by Groucho; 05-19-2010 at 11:12 PM. Reason: corrected some URLs, typo
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Old 02-06-2010, 02:48 PM   #2
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Next, Tomorrowland Speedway didn't have much of a wait so we did that. This was Jack's first time taking the wheel and he had a blast!









Next stop, one of Jack's absolute favorites, Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters. I kept the fisheye lens on just for fun.





Not a great score - I'd do much better later in the trip!







We decided to hop into the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor while we were there.





Both kids ended up getting on the overhead monitor at various times. It was a good show.

By now, the park was closing so we headed for Main St, stopping in at the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor for some treats. We sat and watched people pose with the balloon seller's balloons without her even facing the camera! Poor girl.





We hopped on a bus back to our room, unpacked our waiting luggage, emptied the memory card, and hit the sack.

Next up... day two, Magic Kingdom along with some hotel visits!
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upcoming trips: WDW 11/20-12/2/2014, D23 Destination D!
trip reports: 1/11, Animal Kingdom Villas live TR, full TR (up to day 4); 6/10, Star Wars Weekend, Pop Century; 1/10, Beach Club Villas full TR, live TR; 1/09, Old Key West; 4/08, Beach Club Villas; 9/07, Disneyland Hotel; 1/07, Saratoga Springs Resort

groucho.org gallery (main site) - Flickr - Google+ Pentax Photo Gallery - Pentax Auto 110, H3, 2x Spotmatic, 3x K1000, red K-x, K-5, K-3, Q, WG3
Pentax 10-17mm fisheye, 16-50mm F2.8, 18-55mm, 31mm F1.8, 50mm F1.2/F1.4/F1.7/F2.0, 50-135mm F2.8, 50-200mm, 55-300, Zenitar 16mm fisheye, Lensbaby Composer, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Lester A Dine 105mm F2.8 1:1 macro, F Nikkor 105mm F2.5, M42: Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro, Pentax 35mm F3.5, 55mm F1.8, 105mm F2.8, 2x 135mm F3.5, 300mm F4, 2x Vivitar 200mm F3.5, Carl Zeiss 135mm F3.5
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Old 02-06-2010, 03:15 PM   #3
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Haven't even read your first day yet, but wanted to say that I'm officially signing on! Can't wait to read about how your trip went and see some more shots you came up with, especially from the Lensbaby and fisheye.

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Old 02-06-2010, 03:19 PM   #4
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Great start,Groucho!
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Old 02-06-2010, 04:17 PM   #5
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Great start! Love those fisheye shots of Jack driving.
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Old 02-06-2010, 04:51 PM   #6
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Very excited to see that you started a TR here! My DBF and I both love your pics on the photography board. He links me to your photos quite often! I admit, however, that after a while, the photography board doesn't hold my attention for very long because I will never be able to take great photos like that. Plus, I love WORDS (I have my BA in English, and I now teach middle school English Language Arts), so I miss the explanations in the photography TRs. When I saw your name here, I jumped in happiness and immediately linked DBF! He now has a SLR and is definitely getting inspiration from people like you!
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Old 02-06-2010, 05:55 PM   #7
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I'm SO excited, Groucho! It's almost like your 'live' report on the photo board was just a teaser, and the shots are amazing. Can't wait to see/read more!
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Old 02-06-2010, 07:50 PM   #8
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I'm hooked. Can't wait for more!

Jack and Leila are absolutely adorable!
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:09 PM   #9
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Loving the pics! Can't wait to see what's coming up!
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Old 02-06-2010, 11:10 PM   #10
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Signing on here for the full TR!
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Old 02-06-2010, 11:18 PM   #11
Groucho
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Thanks everyone! I'm very glad that you're enjoying so far. Hopefully I'll get day 2 assembled tomorrow... or at least part of it! Only another 4,500 or so photos left to process...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DznyFan View Post
It's almost like your 'live' report on the photo board was just a teaser
That was kind of the plan.
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upcoming trips: WDW 11/20-12/2/2014, D23 Destination D!
trip reports: 1/11, Animal Kingdom Villas live TR, full TR (up to day 4); 6/10, Star Wars Weekend, Pop Century; 1/10, Beach Club Villas full TR, live TR; 1/09, Old Key West; 4/08, Beach Club Villas; 9/07, Disneyland Hotel; 1/07, Saratoga Springs Resort

groucho.org gallery (main site) - Flickr - Google+ Pentax Photo Gallery - Pentax Auto 110, H3, 2x Spotmatic, 3x K1000, red K-x, K-5, K-3, Q, WG3
Pentax 10-17mm fisheye, 16-50mm F2.8, 18-55mm, 31mm F1.8, 50mm F1.2/F1.4/F1.7/F2.0, 50-135mm F2.8, 50-200mm, 55-300, Zenitar 16mm fisheye, Lensbaby Composer, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Lester A Dine 105mm F2.8 1:1 macro, F Nikkor 105mm F2.5, M42: Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro, Pentax 35mm F3.5, 55mm F1.8, 105mm F2.8, 2x 135mm F3.5, 300mm F4, 2x Vivitar 200mm F3.5, Carl Zeiss 135mm F3.5
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Old 02-06-2010, 11:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RachelNinja View Post
Very excited to see that you started a TR here! My DBF and I both love your pics on the photography board. He links me to your photos quite often! I admit, however, that after a while, the photography board doesn't hold my attention for very long because I will never be able to take great photos like that. Plus, I love WORDS (I have my BA in English, and I now teach middle school English Language Arts), so I miss the explanations in the photography TRs. When I saw your name here, I jumped in happiness and immediately linked DBF! He now has a DBF and is definitely getting inspiration from people like you!
Wow, thanks! I really appreciate that. I will try to keep up a good flow of words to go along with the rest of the pics. Strunk & White are my heroes so hopefully I will get a passing grade on my use of English, too.
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upcoming trips: WDW 11/20-12/2/2014, D23 Destination D!
trip reports: 1/11, Animal Kingdom Villas live TR, full TR (up to day 4); 6/10, Star Wars Weekend, Pop Century; 1/10, Beach Club Villas full TR, live TR; 1/09, Old Key West; 4/08, Beach Club Villas; 9/07, Disneyland Hotel; 1/07, Saratoga Springs Resort

groucho.org gallery (main site) - Flickr - Google+ Pentax Photo Gallery - Pentax Auto 110, H3, 2x Spotmatic, 3x K1000, red K-x, K-5, K-3, Q, WG3
Pentax 10-17mm fisheye, 16-50mm F2.8, 18-55mm, 31mm F1.8, 50mm F1.2/F1.4/F1.7/F2.0, 50-135mm F2.8, 50-200mm, 55-300, Zenitar 16mm fisheye, Lensbaby Composer, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Lester A Dine 105mm F2.8 1:1 macro, F Nikkor 105mm F2.5, M42: Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro, Pentax 35mm F3.5, 55mm F1.8, 105mm F2.8, 2x 135mm F3.5, 300mm F4, 2x Vivitar 200mm F3.5, Carl Zeiss 135mm F3.5
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Old 02-07-2010, 12:33 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
Wow, thanks! I really appreciate that. I will try to keep up a good flow of words to go along with the rest of the pics. Strunk & White are my heroes so hopefully I will get a passing grade on my use of English, too.
Subscribing to see what you achieved this trip and I have to say so far the results are great.

Oh yeah, and The Elements of Style rocks!
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Old 02-07-2010, 07:49 AM   #14
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I'm in! Love it so far and LOVE your pics....really brings more life to the trip report! Can you come along on our next trip ??
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Old 02-07-2010, 08:40 AM   #15
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Thanks WDWFigment!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blessed_wth_Triplets View Post
I'm in! Love it so far and LOVE your pics....really brings more life to the trip report! Can you come along on our next trip ??
Sure thing - my per diem is low and my annual pass is ready.
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upcoming trips: WDW 11/20-12/2/2014, D23 Destination D!
trip reports: 1/11, Animal Kingdom Villas live TR, full TR (up to day 4); 6/10, Star Wars Weekend, Pop Century; 1/10, Beach Club Villas full TR, live TR; 1/09, Old Key West; 4/08, Beach Club Villas; 9/07, Disneyland Hotel; 1/07, Saratoga Springs Resort

groucho.org gallery (main site) - Flickr - Google+ Pentax Photo Gallery - Pentax Auto 110, H3, 2x Spotmatic, 3x K1000, red K-x, K-5, K-3, Q, WG3
Pentax 10-17mm fisheye, 16-50mm F2.8, 18-55mm, 31mm F1.8, 50mm F1.2/F1.4/F1.7/F2.0, 50-135mm F2.8, 50-200mm, 55-300, Zenitar 16mm fisheye, Lensbaby Composer, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Lester A Dine 105mm F2.8 1:1 macro, F Nikkor 105mm F2.5, M42: Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro, Pentax 35mm F3.5, 55mm F1.8, 105mm F2.8, 2x 135mm F3.5, 300mm F4, 2x Vivitar 200mm F3.5, Carl Zeiss 135mm F3.5
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