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Old 07-08-2011, 07:05 PM   #121
Moira222
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non trip day

I have an update all ready to go but just thought I'd tell you all that today my baby girl turned 8 years old.

and I just love how some days the simple things are all she needs. $ being a bit tight right now, I really only picked up a few things for her birthday and I had not had time to even wrap them. She didn't care, she said, "just hold them behind your back and I will close my eyes & you can hand them to me. " so I did. First, a book: Pollyanna; then another book Treasure Island (Pirates!) finally a third book Call of the Wild (Target had them in the dollar aisle!) she loved the Call of the wild - its about dogs of course! Then I have her the new Selena Gomez & the Scene cd she loved it. A double dutch jump rope set, and a basketball (from Five Below, love how affordable that store is) well Joe and I just loved how she first played with the jump rope, then dribbled the basketball all around the house and in the garage, and finally grabbed her new book so she could read it on the way to her friend's house.

tell me, how can you not just love love a kid like that?

and now..... sadly,...... our last day at Disney World.... (for this year)
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:14 PM   #122
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Day 8 May the Force be With You

oops i am a dork. this is not our last day! Its SWW day!!!!

Friday morning we didn’t get an early early start – I knew it was the start of Star Wars Weekend, and DHS was our destination, but I was having a hard time getting good information. On DISboards, I read that the rope drop show was not to be missed…but also that it was crazy and people got there way early. Then I read that they might open the park at 6 am – what did that mean for rope drop? Then I asked at the front desk and they told me that the storm trooper show was more like 11 am in a parade. I had no idea really what sort of schedule there was at all, and was just not willing to make us all crazy getting out of the resort at 7 am for nothing.

Since we hadn’t used a TS credit the night before, we decided to head down to Whispering Canyons again. I took a few shots of the lobby on our way down:



I love the totems









Joe got the egg white omelette again, Katie got the kids cinnamon raisin French toast, and I ordered the breakfast skillet. It was good, but I wished I had done the French toast again. That French toast was just so yummy.







Katie caught the pony ride again – she loves doing that!



and after breakfast we headed out to the bus stop for DHS.
Photo opp!




DHS was busy but not nutty busy like I had read on the boards. ok, good! We headed in really with not much of a plan. I guess I was really expecting
to see crazy Star Wars characters everywhere, and that was not the case. We did come upon this lady



but I have no idea who she is supposed to be! So if you know, please post!!

We stopped the local constable for a photo opp – Joe just loved their interaction earlier in the week.


Katie really really wanted to do TSM again, so we headed back. it was a long wait – 80 minutes.



Hello character photo spot
I fear we may never visit you!

Joe was not into it, so she and I waited, and he headed out and ended up riding single rider on both Rockin Roller Coaster (still have not done this one) and Tower of Terror, then wandered back to the TSM exit munching some yummy caramel corn in a very cool R2D2 popcorn holder.





By the time we got off of TSM, it was lunch time! Fun ride but ridiculous wait. We ended up at Studio Catering again, and did catch a view of the people lined up to see Darth Vader.







(more after I pick up Katie from her party!)
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:27 PM   #123
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That opening day of DHS was confusing. I don't know if you got the same info card in your room as we did but it told us that SWW wouldn't start until noon on that first day (Friday). I wish they would have published that earlier so those of us planning our trips could have planned accordingly! We had planned to go that day but we ended up switching our plans around to go on a day where we knew it would be a full day of SWW.

Also, there is a fun pre-show with the Storm Troppers at the park entrance before they let you in. Of course, the only way you see that is if you arrive before they open the turnstyles. Problem with that is that the posted opening time for the park that weekend was 8am, well they did not stick with that and opened early. So if you had planned to show up for opening there is a good chance you would have missed it anyways.

You are lucky you did not hit big crowds, they were all probably lined up at Star Tours.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:09 PM   #124
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lifelong_Dreamer View Post
That opening day of DHS was confusing. I don't know if you got the same info card in your room as we did but it told us that SWW wouldn't start until noon on that first day (Friday). I wish they would have published that earlier so those of us planning our trips could have planned accordingly! We had planned to go that day but we ended up switching our plans around to go on a day where we knew it would be a full day of SWW.

Also, there is a fun pre-show with the Storm Troppers at the park entrance before they let you in. Of course, the only way you see that is if you arrive before they open the turnstyles. Problem with that is that the posted opening time for the park that weekend was 8am, well they did not stick with that and opened early. So if you had planned to show up for opening there is a good chance you would have missed it anyways.

You are lucky you did not hit big crowds, they were all probably lined up at Star Tours.
There were a lot of people lined up for Darth Vader ...we just clipped a shot walking by!

We didn't get a card in our hotel room at all - I asked at the front desk and the CM there at first didn't even want to give me the sheet that she had because she wasn't sure where to get another. I truly was not sure what was going on with WLR staff that week......it was not up to par. Joe was a little bummed to not see the storm troopers thing but we had no idea what time to see it, and couldn't get an answer anywhere. Oh well! We are oldies.... we realized when we got there that we are "old school" Star Wars fans -- we have no idea who all the people are from the "new" movies. bring me Chewie & Yoda and I'll all there!
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:24 PM   #125
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Day 8 May the Force be With You... p2 play time & Kouzzina

Lunch over, we really were not feeling the park. It was hot, crowded, and we didn’t have a goal. So we ditched! We walked out slowly, rode the Great Movie Ride again, looked through a few stores and then caught a bus back to WLR.


Katie was anxious to check out the arcade for some reason, so Joe headed up to the room for I don’t know what …a nap maybe? I don’t know.

Katie and I went over to the arcade to use the free arcade points that came in our KTTW package. The arcade was okay but really much of interest to Katie. Not sure why she was so anxious – just the idea of it maybe because we really are not big video game people. But we played for a little while with our free games, and she pretended to drive all of the cars and motorcycles in the arcade.

Money spent, attention span gone, we headed out & over to the Cubs Den – they were to have arts and crafts from 2-3 and it was just 2pm. It was a nice room – much like a childcare or preschool room. Toys, games, videos, books, coloring tables, things to keep kids’ attention. The craft of the day was a coloring card …it may have been a magnet. Katie picked one with a horse and sat and colored away.


After while someone else came in with another little girl but they didn’t stay long. ( I watched every little girl to see if I recognized Caitlyn...I was SO SURE I'd run into pinkxray somewhere!) I settled into a rocking chair and watched a bit of classic Disney shorts on the tv while Katie colored, happy for a little downtime. Katie really enjoyed being in there, and actually requested that we leave her there and go to dinner without her. We may have except the childcare part of the evening doesn’t start till 4:30, and we needed to leave around 4 to get to our dinner reservation at Kouzzina.

Katie and I headed up & freshened up and collected Joe so we could head out for our dinner reservation. We took a ferry to the Magic Kingdom, and then from there took a bus to the Boardwalk. The front of the Boardwalk was just lovely – it definitely gave the feel of a turn of the century north east sea side resort. The inside was big – a little overwhelming, but still very comfy. Joe and Katie liked the circular couch:



I really liked this chandelier:


We wandered out the door and found a map to find where we were going


Look, there it is!



We got there early – they had not yet opened – but not early enough to go wandering about. There are definitely pros and cons to early ADR’s. The pro is the food is always fresh and you rarely have a wait. The con is that sometimes you may not be hungry (you have to time your lunch right and keep it small) and sometimes you have to cut something else short in order to make your ADR.

When the restaurant opens, all of the staff head outside to the Boardwalk and do this little pep talk/group cheer. it was neat to see. Then the doors
were opened and we were seated pretty quickly.

Dinner was wonderful. Our meal came with appetizer, entrée and dessert – on the meal plan. (Thanks all ears for the descriptions !) Happily, Joe ordered calamari



I didn’t make a note but I most likely got a salad (I know boring but I just love salad!)
Katie ordered soup and then a Mediterranean lasagna



For dinner I ordered Saffron Pasta - tossed with Lamb Ragu and Shaved Kefalograviera Cheese (Macaronada). I was a little nervous because I had not even tasted lamb in years, my last taste was so icky. But I was feeling brave,



and I was glad because it was delicious!!!

Joe ordered the Kouzzina Trio - Tasting size portions of Greek-style Lasagna, Char-grilled Lamb Burger, and Cinnamon-stewed Chicken with Orzo – and loved every bite!



For dessert, I ordered the Baklava - Traditional Walnut and Cinnamon Pastry with Pistachio Gelato, Joe had Chocolate Budino Cake - Warm Molten Chocolate with Whipped Sweet Cream and Katie had a make your own sundae



Yummy family fun dinner!




unpleasantness at dinner….

Our meal was wonderful. The table next to us, however, did not really get to enjoy theirs. Shortly after we were seated, a large party were seated – three kids, mom and dad, grandparents. Kouzzina has a great layout and you can watch the kitchen staff – its all open. So I was watching the kitchen, past the nice family next to us. I noticed that the oldest boy (8 or 9 ish) was sitting on his mom’s lap very snuggly …then he very quickly jumped up, ran around one side of the table as mom hopped up out of her chair and…


upchuck


all over the floor


blech


I knew it was coming…. and quickly averted my eyes and covered Katie’s face with a oh don’t look Ethel…. ((oh sorry, flash back to the 70‘s ))

So dad took the boy away. about 10 minutes later, the mom and two kids were getting boxes delivered (because their food had already come)and only Grandma & Grandpa were left. I jokingly asked if they chased them all away & they said that all of the kids felt ill. I commented on how hot it was in the parks, but he said they’d only just arrived that day. OH! I felt badly for them and silently wished that they were all feeling well by morning.

So dinner over, we were bound for Epcot. Ok here I made a rookie mistake. I made my family turn around and wait for the ferry (because I wanted to take a ferry in!..ok and my feet hurt from a week of touring) well they kept bugging me because we waited so long for that ferry we could have ..and should have..walked.





but ride the ferry we did (I felt really silly when I saw how short the walk was) and entered Epcot at a lovely little entrance behind France. (sort of).


LOVED THAT!


As we walked we passed a belly dancer


and Aladdin and Jasmine



But of course, my power walker had a mission that was not to be interfered with. (grrrr) Eventually they waited for me to catch up (I was waiting for a kid free shot of Jasmine & Aladdin) and we headed to Japan to the pick a pearl.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:38 PM   #126
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Day 8 May the Force be With You... p3 Epcot

Katie and I each picked our oyster



and waited while they were opened. Katie’s was opened first.







Next was my oyster….where was it?



it was hiding. Do you see that Katie picked a pearl much bigger than mine? Hers was 7.75 mine was 7.0. She points it out on a regular basis







After we picked settings, we wandered around the shop for a while and then headed out to the very zen anime area:



Katie was not so interested:



Katie found a KidCot stop (our first this trip!)



Notice how Katie and another little girl are standing and there is a man just sitting there? Yeah, really, what’s the deal hogging up all the seats (there were 4 adults around the table in all of the chairs) while the kids coloring stand. aah well it didn’t last too long and Katie was able to sit and color. (the other girl was with the adults)

I picked up our necklace charms and we strolled down the World Showcase.

Katie was in a coloring sort of mood, so when we hit Italy we stopped again so she could color. I looked around at the shops a bit and then Joe and I sat back and people watched for a while



and then wandered further. DH was getting a bit grumpy and was in power walking mode to head back to the resort, Katie and I were enjoying the stroll, stopping to play a few songs

before we were dragged along.

I admit, I insisted on going into the Mexico temple – I really wanted to ride the Three Caballeros – it was on my list! I had to!







but once the ride was over, Katie and I caved in headed out to the resort. A rather unceremonious Adios to EPCOT. I really did want to stay later but well, c’est la vie, right? No pool, we really were kind of tired so I think we just snuggled up to a movie & called it a night.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:59 PM   #127
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Wow, Katie got a nice big pearl!

I love that little anime museum, it is a nice retreat as not many people realize it is there.
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:35 PM   #128
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HAPPY Birthday Katie!!! How does it feel to be the big 8? Our girls are so close in age!

Great multiple post update today!!! That restaurant looked really good (minus the puking). And great job with the big pearl, Katie!!! Do you have pictures of your final product?
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Old 07-09-2011, 12:58 AM   #129
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The guys in my group were like that our last day too. They were ready to go
home I think, where Maya and I were savoring every last second.
I'm with teachermommy- I'd love to see the finished Pearl setting

Happy Birthday Katie! You seem like such a sweet and appreciative young lady!
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:07 AM   #130
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lifelong_Dreamer View Post
Wow, Katie got a nice big pearl!

I love that little anime museum, it is a nice retreat as not many people realize it is there.
This was our first time finding it and it was very quiet and serene.

Quote:
Originally Posted by teachermommy78 View Post
HAPPY Birthday Katie!!! How does it feel to be the big 8? Our girls are so close in age!

Great multiple post update today!!! That restaurant looked really good (minus the puking). And great job with the big pearl, Katie!!! Do you have pictures of your final product?
Oh she was SO excited yesterday morning - we gave her "breakfast in bed" - a donut with sprinkles & milk! she loved it. then she was doing an "I'm Eight" happy dance on the way out to the car.


Quote:
Originally Posted by lbuzz52 View Post
The guys in my group were like that our last day too. They were ready to go
home I think, where Maya and I were savoring every last second.
I'm with teachermommy- I'd love to see the finished Pearl setting

Happy Birthday Katie! You seem like such a sweet and appreciative young lady!
I thought I took pictures of the two charms but guess I will have to do it later today & post!
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:52 AM   #131
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Happy birthday Katie! May you have a happy and healthy year.
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:00 PM   #132
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Happy Belated Birthday, Katie (hope you had a magical day).

Great updates, MaryEllen. Kouzzina looks really good (minus what happened at the table next to you); we will definitely have to put that on the list for an upcoming trip.

I have NEVER done Pick-a-Pearl and that is definitely on the list for this year.

Glad Katie was able to visit some of the Kidcots and enjoy some coloring time. But, sir, could you please give up your seat to who it was intended for.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:56 PM   #133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lizzyshakuntala View Post
Happy birthday Katie! May you have a happy and healthy year.
Thanks!! I will share your wish with her. She gets a kick out of seeing birthday wishes on the Dis!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatMark View Post
Happy Belated Birthday, Katie (hope you had a magical day).

Great updates, MaryEllen. Kouzzina looks really good (minus what happened at the table next to you); we will definitely have to put that on the list for an upcoming trip.

I have NEVER done Pick-a-Pearl and that is definitely on the list for this year.

Glad Katie was able to visit some of the Kidcots and enjoy some coloring time. But, sir, could you please give up your seat to who it was intended for.


Its a little sad to see my baby growing so big she has to think about parading with princesses and visiting the Kidcot stops. though this time we just didn't see the kidcot stops everywhere this time, guess it was how we toured the world.

pick a pearl was fun and provided you don't go wild on the setting, can be a very affordable and luxurious souvenir. we really enjoyed doing it! Joe paid for our pearls - I want to say they were maybe $15 or $20? I bought mine and Katie's settings and I think they were in the same range - but we went with silver, not gold. you could spend a lot on a setting if you wanted.
Katie's setting:

My setting:

Last edited by Moira222; 07-12-2011 at 09:19 PM. Reason: added pearl pictures
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:08 PM   #134
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Day 9: 'Round Midnight

Day 9
Last day at Disney World parks! boo! We got ourselves together and down to the dock early ….this was our last chance to catch the opening show!

The ferry just pulled away as we came around the corner of the dock. We waited the next ten minutes or so for the next ferry and hopped on, hopeful.

As our ferry docked, we saw Mickey and the gang singing and dancing from the top of the train station.




That was a close as we got to rope drop. oh well. We still got to enter the park right at opening, which was nice.











Where did we head?

Main St. Bakery. I had a mission and was determined to take my family along with me to cinnamon heaven.





and we were not disappointed. Joe and Katie got the last two sticky buns from one tray, and I got one from a new tray – the CM was spooning all the yummy goodness from the empty tray onto the new one, so I said “OH, you can spoon that on my bun.” and she did! YAY YAY YAY

We sat and enjoyed our breakfast indulgence, but didn’t want to linger too long (ok some of us wanted to linger over our coffee but apparently that was not to be so). we had rides to ride!!!





We headed back to tomorrowland and found no wait at all on the Buzz Lightyear ride. WOOHOO. ride we did. fun! we rode again! MORE FUN!

Ok, sort of woohoo on the no wait because they wouldn’t let me in with my cup of coffee, and Joe wouldn’t wait for me to finish it.


SQUEAMISH PEOPLE BE WARNED, THIS IS HORRIFIC….






he made me throw away my coffee.
.............un finished.

............................. it was still hot.
it was a sad sad sad moment.

for me and coffee lovers everywhere.


but I digress. riding Buzz twice was fun. After Buzz we were still feeling the whole alien thing, so we headed over to Stitch’s great adventure.



Katie laughed and giggled like crazy, especially when Stitch spit on her!

After we saved the galaxy (three times mind you) we headed over to the people mover. It was a nice quiet ride. Space Mountain was all lit up when we rode through it – which Joe thought was weird (he was the only one who’d ever ridden it) because it’s a dark ride. We learned later that night that right when we were going through it, a woman had been passed out unconscious on the ride and had to be taken to the hospital to be checked out. WOW guess that is one ride that they are serious about all those “do not ride if….” warnings.






I enjoyed the birds eye view of the park and was determined to get a decent castle shot.






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Old 07-12-2011, 09:13 PM   #135
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After the People Mover we headed over to the Carousel of Progress.



We had the whole theater to ourselves so it was pretty cool. None of us had ever been on this ride before and we all really enjoyed it.





Can you believe we did all of this by 9 am? I think it was just after 9 when we got off of the Carousel of Progress. What a great extra magic hour!

We got in line for the Speedway again. the line was quite a bit longer today – there were a few school groups there. Joe sat in the viewing area and waited ( I think with another Aunty Gravity smoothie!), so Katie and I rode – she drove, since she now had her Mickey License – but I helped with the gas. Those pedals are sort of hard to keep down!

Whew! all that shooting, riding, learning ,and driving had Katie hungry. We picked up a container of Dibs and headed out to Fantasy Land.



I think that this is the Barnstormer re-purposed:
anyone else think so??

A few shots of the construction area (good thing Joe is tall & can put Katie on his shoulders!





We actually got Joe to ride It’s a Small World. Amazing! and he didn’t even complain! Afterwards we grabbed FastPasses for peter pan and got “bonus” passes for Mickey’s Philharmonic. The FP’s weren’t good till after 1, but MP had no line at all so we started the line to the theater. What fun! We missed this last time, and so were looking forward to it again.

It was so much fun, Katie kept trying to grab at things when they went flying out. We had to stop her when she almost caught the guy’s head who was sitting in front of us!

(more coming)
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