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Old 04-22-2012, 06:05 PM   #166
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Ride the soothing currents of a tropical river as it winds past sandy beaches, through a dense rain forest, beneath the rocky terrain of cascading waterfalls, and through an underwater cave. Glance down as you travel and take in the wonders that exist beneath the surface of the crystal-clear water

What a fun place and experience...the whole river tip probably took 20-30 minutes and we all had fun diving looking for all the sunken treasure below us and playing in the various waterfalls.

Venture beyond the beaches and waterfalls of Discovery Cove and enter a hidden treasure, the Explorer's Aviary, where an inspiring natural habitat sings with the rhythm of wings and the melodies of birdsong. Watch as hundreds of colorful birds soar above and around you. Feel your heart soar as a feathered friend glides in to meet you and nibble fruit from your hand.

Wind Away River sounds really nice, and relaxing, and fun. And WARM!!!

Bummer that it was too cold to really enjoy the Aviary. That would be an interesting experience.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:35 PM   #167
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Snorkeling and Floating sounds like a great afternoon to me!!! Beautiful photos of both fish and family!
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:13 PM   #168
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Love your pictures from Cat in the Hat- so it looks like nobody was yelling at you to put down the camera that night.

I also appreciate the photos and descriptions from Poseidon's Fury. We didn't see that show.

Bummer about the meal fiasco at Mythos. The atmosphere is phenomenal and the food is great, but you really had poor service once again!
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:08 AM   #169
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A Fond Farewell to Harry

A Fond Farewell to Harry


I ask the attendant where the entrance to the castle only tour is and she points me back through Filchs to the entrance.



We head up some stairs and into a different portrait hall then what is in the ride line.




I think it is cooler with the staircase and all, more like the movie. From there we head down a narrow hallway which opens into Dumbledore’s Office along side the ride line.






We spend some time hear watching Dumbledore emerge, give his speech, and disappear again…although it feels weird because we are standing in front of those going through the ride line. We also check out all the theming details and what a lot there are that we had missed when we were walking through the ride line. From Dumbledore’s Office we follow alongside the ride line and into the Dark Arts Classroom.








Where again we watch the show with Harry, Hermione, and Ron emerging, give their speech, disappear under the cloak of invisibility and making it…




We leave the classroom and this is where the tour ends with a set of stairs back down into Filch’s. The castle tour is neat and you get time to enjoy all the little things that you don’t have time to stop for when you are in the ride line, but you also miss so much and don’t have the AHHH of going through the greenhouse to the entrance of Hogwarts.
My suggestion is that even if you are not riding FJ, do the rider line (if the wait time is reasonable) and take the chicken exit once you get to the sorting hat. Depending on how fast the rider line went, go back and do the castle only tour so you can enjoy the 2 large rooms at your own pace.

Back outside of Hogwarts (forgive me for a moment when I post one of my favorite pictures of Ab on the trip)

Ab and Boo both decide it is time for some Butter Beer and I have some unfinished business in Honeydukes, so we make our way down the street in Hogsmeade and into the Boar’s Head Tavern where we order a round of Butter Beer and take it out to the patio to enjoy the view of Hogwarts and talk about our touring plan.


Ab and Boo decide that they have done everything they want in WWofHP (and it is only about 7:45 am) and are ready to move on, since the rest of the park is about to open and we have no real plans until 9:30 am. The Butter Beer seems to have done the trick and Boo acts for the time being that he is over his Moaning Myrtle impression so we head back out onto the street in Hogsmeade where we see the conductor has arrived and stop to take a picture with him and see if we can stump him with some HP trivia.


Honeydukes is still calling my name...I had promised myself a cauldron cake so in we go and pick up a little treat.




Back outside we take a look at the crowds and decide that we are done in WWofHP and bid Harry a fond farewell.




Once we step outside of the arch way leading into WWofHP we are asked "Are you sure you want to leave? There is no re-entry once you leave?" What, looking at my watch it is 8:15 am and we realize that WWofHP is now standby entrance over in Jurassic Park. Really the park has been open 15 minutes to the general public and it is now at capacity...this is not looking good for our touring plan today.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:19 AM   #170
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natebenma View Post
Wind Away River sounds really nice, and relaxing, and fun. And WARM!!!

Bummer that it was too cold to really enjoy the Aviary. That would be an interesting experience.
We loved wind away river...our lazy river this summer at out local water park is going to be such a disappointment...

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Snorkeling and Floating sounds like a great afternoon to me!!! Beautiful photos of both fish and family!
I wish that I had time to scan the actual photos...I am not sure what is up with the CD...the colors were so cool for a small little disposable camera.

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Love your pictures from Cat in the Hat- so it looks like nobody was yelling at you to put down the camera that night.

I don't understand what the big deal is with cameras...it is not like the ride is top secret...as long as the flash is off, what is the problems.

I also appreciate the photos and descriptions from Poseidon's Fury. We didn't see that show.

Bummer about the meal fiasco at Mythos. The atmosphere is phenomenal and the food is great, but you really had poor service once again!
You are so right...the atmosphere is amazing!
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:33 PM   #171
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Back outside of Hogwarts (forgive me for a moment when I post one of my favorite pictures of Ab on the trip)
Okay, your daughter sorta kinda looks like Luna Lovegood in this picture
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Old 04-23-2012, 03:13 PM   #172
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I'm really looking forward to touring that castle!! It's SSOO cool! Butterbeer (frozen) is on our top priority list too - well that's for me anyway. ROFL DH doesn't care - he'd rather save money and drink water and DD will try the pumpkin juice b/c she doesn't drink pop so I guess I'm on my own but it's on MY TOP PRIORITY list!
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Old 04-24-2012, 07:04 AM   #173
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One Last Time Around to All the Islands

One Last Time Around to All the Islands


With Caledron cake safely inside a box we decide to head off for Jurassic Park to find someplace to sit down and share it, and then make the big loop around IOA. We have a little less than 2 hours before we meet Jeff and Goo for breakfast at Confisco Grill back at the Port of Entry. Since we had not really checked out the Jurassic Discovery Center we went in there and found the place to be completely empty so we found an empty table and shared the little cake.


Boo is still complaining that his stomach hurts and passes on a bite. Ab and I both agreed that it was pretty yummy…we loved the chocolate mousee that it was filled with. With the cake eaten, I suggest that we head down the stairs and explore the Discovery Center…but Ab and Boo decide that they have seen enough dinosaur exhibits and want to pass on this. I am a little shocked, but I can understand I do tend to drag them to lots of museums. We head back outside and pass on the Jurassic River Adventure, no body really feels like getting wet nor do they want to ride the Flyers. Next up we enter into Toon Lagoon and Boo is really moaning and groaning, so I suggest that he goes into the bathroom to see if that helps while Ab and take a little closer look at the theming. Boo emerges some 10 minutes later, not looking any better but he says he can continue on. I have to say that both JP and TL are desserted, there is literally no one anywhere in sight of us so we are really taking the time to look around and take some fun pictures.








There is really nothing in Toon Lagoon that does not entail getting wet so we continue on until we cross over into Super Hero Island where I start in on begging, pleading, and trying to bribe someone to ride the Hulk with me. But first there is Spiderman, which both of the kids love and we decide to stop and ride a few times.


After our last ride, Boo begins moaning again and just wants to sit down. Well, I am riding Hulk whether the two of them do or not. About the time I make my decision Jeff calls and he and Goo are on their way to the park. I tell him where we are and where to meet us and I head off to ride the Hulk, by myself! The wait time is about 60 minutes according the sign, so I opt to do the Express Pass line…could not find the single rider line entrance.




It takes me about 15 minutes before I am on board and whisked away through the loops and drops. While riding I can see that Jeff and Goo have arrived and are standing with Ab and Boo below…yes, I could see them while I rode and they actually caught me riding. I love the Hulk, it is a smooth coaster with lots of fun twists and turns. I meet them and find that Goo has discovered the super hero phones and is playing around, while Boo is still sitting there moaning.





Looking at my watch we have about 20 minutes before our reservation and I decide it would not hurt to go and see if we can get in early and we head back towards the Port of Entry to Confisco Grill where I check in and the hostess doesn’t think there will be a problem.


With Boo moaning loudly by now we send him to the bathroom while we sit (and wonder if we will have a good restaurant experience) and wait to be called for our table.
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Old 04-24-2012, 07:16 AM   #174
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Quote:
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Okay, your daughter sorta kinda looks like Luna Lovegood in this picture
You are so right...she loves Luna!

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I'm really looking forward to touring that castle!! It's SSOO cool! Butterbeer (frozen) is on our top priority list too - well that's for me anyway. ROFL DH doesn't care - he'd rather save money and drink water and DD will try the pumpkin juice b/c she doesn't drink pop so I guess I'm on my own but it's on MY TOP PRIORITY list!
You are about to leave on your trip! Drink a butterbeer for me! I bet when DD tries a sip of butterbeer she will love it! The frozen really does not have the fizzy pop...really nor does the regular. Have a super trip and I cant wait to read your TR!
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Old 04-24-2012, 12:59 PM   #175
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Once again, amazing photos from the castle tour! Your pictures of the rooms with the holograms are awesome.

I'm glad the rest of the park was not crowded for you, but looking at that picture from WWoHP, I know where everyone was!

You got to ride Hulk!!!

I only got one chance to ride it, at night, right before the park closed. My oldest son LOVED it, but the younger one refused.

Don't like hearing all that moaning from Boo...
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:13 PM   #176
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I am venturing into the world of Digital Scrapbooking...I just don't seem to have the time or the place to do traditional anymore. I am learning...here is a page I completed tonight. I will post the others I have finished for the trip later...

For TR Chapter:
Not Platform 9 3/4, but Still Pretty Cool


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Old 04-24-2012, 08:15 PM   #177
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Quote:
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Once again, amazing photos from the castle tour! Your pictures of the rooms with the holograms are awesome.

I will not tell you how many attempts and changes in shutter speeds it took me!

I'm glad the rest of the park was not crowded for you, but looking at that picture from WWoHP, I know where everyone was!

Yep...silly muggles standing in line while we enjoy the rest of the park!

You got to ride Hulk!!!

Finally decided if I am going to ride, I am gonna have to do it myself. I knew Jeff was on his way so I was not worried leaving them for a few moments so I could enjoy!

I only got one chance to ride it, at night, right before the park closed. My oldest son LOVED it, but the younger one refused.

Don't like hearing all that moaning from Boo...
Me either...
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:17 PM   #178
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Originally Posted by momabaarjo View Post
I am venturing into the world of Digital Scrapbooking...I just don't seem to have the time or the place to do traditional anymore. I am learning...here is a page I completed tonight. I will post the others I have finished for the trip later...

For TR Chapter:
Not Platform 9 3/4, but Still Pretty Cool


The cool thing about digital scrap booking is you can have several copies printed as books and then give them out as Christmas gifts. We do this every year for our parents!
Love your "page" btw!
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:56 PM   #179
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The cool thing about digital scrap booking is you can have several copies printed as books and then give them out as Christmas gifts. We do this every year for our parents!
Love your "page" btw!
I have done a few photo books, mostly the kind where you upload the photos and the company inserts them into premade layouts for family and friends...this is the first time I am doing the designing from scratch and I am loving it! I have done traditional scrapbooking for over 15 years but I just don't have the time needed to get it done...let alone the work space.
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Old 04-25-2012, 07:02 AM   #180
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A Grinchy Breakfast

A Grinch-y Breakfast


Last Christmas Abigail decided that the Grinch is her favorite character so this Christmas, I scheduled for us to have breakfast with the Grinch as a special treat for her. Goo laughs and says she likes the Grinch because he as attitude just like her, which lands him a loving pop on the head from his big sister. They both giggle and poke their heads into the dining area, where Goo spots the Grinch and asks if Max is here too. About the same time our name is called Boo arrives back, looking a little better and saying he is hungry (a good sign that maybe today will not be a disaster and we can be a family again). We are greeted by Mike, our server, who takes us over to a table near the back of the restaurant. Goo asks if Max is around, and Mike not missing a beat to a 6 year olds question tells Boo that he will have to go look and see if he can find them. Mike takes our drink order, explains the buffet and sends us on our way. Maybe we will have a good waiter, it is looking promising. The buffet is set up across the room near the entrance and we go to fill up our plates. The selection is not bad including a few themed foods like green eggs and ham,


little rice krispe treat Christmas trees, and waffle snitch stars.


When we get back to the table, our drinks are waiting along with…


sitting on Goo’s chair. Mike comes back as we sit down and asks if we needing anything and tells Goo to take good care of Max or the Grinch might get a little, well Grinchy. As we begin to eat, Boo decides that since we are doing a Seuss breakfast maybe he should more Seuss-ish and dons his blue Thing hair (what Grinch matching shirts are not enough?) and the Whoos come to check him out.




Ab pulls out her copy of How the Grinch Stole Christmas and gets them to sign her book.


The Whoos have a great time signing the book, styling his hair and warning us about the green guy who is in the room that scares them. Before we know it the Grinch himself appears to check out the blue haired boy, tell Goo to eat his breakfast and don’t feed Max, and then to make a few comments about the cute blonde at the table.






I must say that we love the Jim Carrey verision of the Grinch the best, and this guy does a great job. I had read that sometimes he is a little bit over the top during breakfast, but I really found him to be perfect. He spent a lot of time teasing the kids and being just plain like the Grinch. Near the end of the breakfast the Cat in the Hat arrived for his interaction time with the kids.






I think Jo liked him the best, since he is at the age where his teachers do a lot of Seuss themed days. Mike brings the bill and mistakenly gives it to Jeff who freaks out over the price of the meal, I quickly grab it from his hands to pay telling him that everything has been budgeted for in advance and quit being Grinchy which gets a big laugh from the kids. Overall breakfast was a good experience…good food (although it is really overpriced), great character interaction (except Ab was hoping to see Thing 1 & 2), and the best wait staff we have had at a meal (for which I gave him a large tip). With the bill paid and breakfast over, our next stop of course has to be…
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