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Old 11-20-2012, 03:00 PM   #1456
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You already know that I've been away from the DIS and I had A LOT of catching up to do, but I'm happy to say I'm all caught up! Just a few comments:

When I have no plan and some free time, I always end up shopping, too. Mousegears is tied for my favorite place with the Emporium.

We haven't tried Via Napoli yet, and that's a mistake. I always get into my head that we need to try something "different," and then the kids never end up eating. I am definitely putting VN on my list for next trip. I've come to the realization lately that they will ALWAYS eat pizza, even when they refuse everything else. Might as well get some really good pizza and please everyone, right!?

That Snow White is the whitest, snowiest Snow White I've ever seen, even in that heat!

I agree with you on the Sharpie thing (both about hoarding them and them being dumb for a place filled with children). That's why we've never done the KidCot stations. We stopped at one once, then realized they had Sharpies and have skipped them ever since! Maybe we should just bring our own Crayola Washables or some crayons and let them try it. Hmmm...idea!

We did a date night once to California Grill and loved it. Not a bad dish to be had! I've been wanting to go back, but now that we refuse (WITH GOOD REASON) to take my MIL back, it's just us with the kids. I'm glad she did so well there. It sort of inspires me to try it with my crew. Sort of. You can't really lose with that view, right?
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:40 PM   #1457
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That must have been a great meal. Delicious steak, awesome view, and Maddie on her best behavior just enjoying seeing her castle. Really, why wouldn't you want to go back there?

Sorry about the bus ride. That would be a bit intimidating, especially to a family who are first time guests.
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:15 PM   #1458
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You are very lucky that Maddie would choose fresh fruits and steak over other choices!

I was perfectly fine with my choice of ADR for this next trip until I read your update. Teriyaki chicken and Filet Mignon are my two favorite meat so to put them together sounds heavenly. But it's so expensive... what to do, what to do???

Last edited by ronnmel; 11-20-2012 at 04:24 PM.
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:23 PM   #1459
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I'm so glad you enjoyed your California Grill dinner! It sounds absolutely wonderful... and that view just can't be beat!
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:47 PM   #1460
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What a lovely last night. I am so sad that your TR is almost over. But almost in time for your next trip.
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:18 PM   #1461
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Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Bryan and I had agreed to some pool time, and on this day Bryan and I took turns swimming with Maddie and soaking our very tired feet in the hot tub.
Sometimes that feels like the best part of the day!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
As you get off the elevator, the bar will be about 20 feet in front of you on the left. The restaurant spreads out around the bar and the far wall is comprised entirely of windows. We were seated on the coveted right side of the room, but I can’t believe that there’s a bad view in the house. From our table, I was looking directly across the Seven Seas Lagoon at the Grand Floridian (and the sun setting behind it), and Maddie was staring straight at her beloved castle. Poor Bryan was stuck looking at me.
Sounds like a great spot! And I'm sure Bryan wasn't too upset.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
When ordering we’d consulted our server because I simply couldn’t decide between the featured fish entrée and the filet mignon. The server (who was entirely professional and knowledgeable) simply said “The filet has been voted best in Florida for the last 5 years”.*
*by members of the California Grill staff.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
We enjoyed watching the gorgeous sunset as we waited, and as it began to get dark Maddie became enchanted with the view. We asked for a booster seat so that she could see the lights of the castle change a little more ease.
Incredible view! Looks like dinner is worth it just for that!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
It was simply breathtaking. I would love to end a lovely meal by seeing Wishes from that location some day.
Sounds like I need to look into trying this place.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
When the driver played the princess announcement as Maddie entered, the all SHRIEKED at the top of their lungs and looked around frantically to see what princess would be joining them for a trip to CBR. Maddie was the one who finally had to point out to them that SHE was the princess.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
As we made the longish trip back to CBR, the teens began to sing along with one of the young men who’d begun to play the ukulele (why oh why would anyone bring a ukulele to the Magic Kingdom?).
Seriously. Everyone knows the ukulele is for Aulani, and that you bring your accordion to Florida.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:10 PM   #1462
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Miss Maddie makes such a pretty princess! Sounds like she was really excellent during the meal, too!

All of the food at California Grill sounds superb! I really think that may need to be the next signature we try out. I had wanted to try it on our last trip but I could never get an ADR.
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Old 11-21-2012, 10:17 PM   #1463
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Sounds and looks like a lovely dinner! And, Maddie was a princess indeed! Sounds like she was as polite as a princess! Loved how the bus driver made her entrance special. Just love the magic that one gets sprinkled with while in disney!

Happy thanksgiving to all! I'm thankful for all my wonderful disney magical memories! Karen
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:07 AM   #1464
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Great update again.

Maddie looks so beautiful in her princess dress.
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:22 AM   #1465
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Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

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Old 11-22-2012, 09:46 AM   #1466
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I see you've been kind as well, and I haven't had to catch up on 100 pages!

I so wish we would have an an ADR at Via Napoi. It has officially gone on my list for next year. Your food looks go good,and I really could have gone for some good pizza.
My sister is 34 and still eats her noddles naked!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post

Without further ado, I bring you Cinderella and Prince Charming.


I think I'll frame this one

Absolutely stunning pictures! I actually had a fleck of dust in my eye I see this coming our at a wedding someday, you know 40 years from now.

I see the WS is an exciting place for Maddie as well. Kadence must be placated with kidcot stops, and a snack or two. I do dream of someday, exploring the area at my pace. Alone.

My DH got a shirt in Canada, something about hockey, Blah, Blah... He liked it. LOL I'm such a fan, NOT!

Loved your review of CG. I think I may try that someday, but it have better be when we have free dining!

I know I skipped over some stuff, but Kadence is loving Maddie's costumes, and thinks her Cinderella one is the best. She's also mad at me for not standing in a very long line for Snow White.

She'll live.

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Old 11-22-2012, 10:53 AM   #1467
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Hi there Joining in late here, so I haven't read everything yet. Your daughter is so cute, and I love the interactions some of the princesses had with her! Amazing CM's. Bravo for taking MIL along! When we planned our wedding trip and IL's, it was so stressful I don't think I could do it again. I look forward to reading the rest

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Old 11-22-2012, 07:45 PM   #1468
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Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
We were back at CBR in no time, and Maddie was pleased to see that her guys had been behaving nicely in her absence.
'Cause there's nothing worse than misbehaving stuffies.

I have daughters... I know.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Bryan and I had agreed to some pool time, and on this day Bryan and I took turns swimming with Maddie and soaking our very tired feet in the hot tub.
Good plan.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Who can resist a photo shoot at the fountain (or accesorizing with a plastic lei for that matter?)
I know I, for one, cannot.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
I loved these light fixtures above the check in desk
They look very similar to the one hanging above our dining room table. DW picked them. I guess that proves she has good taste!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
You know what struck me about this? I'm sure the 'hat' part is aimed directly at ball caps, but it wasn't all that long ago that men wouldn't be caught dead without a hat. I really wonder if they would enforce it if an elderly gentleman wearing a fedora came in.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
From our table, I was looking directly across the Seven Seas Lagoon at the Grand Floridian (and the sun setting behind it), and Maddie was staring straight at her beloved castle. Poor Bryan was stuck looking at me.
So Bryan had the best view. Gotcha.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
When ordering we’d consulted our server because I simply couldn’t decide between the featured fish entrée and the filet mignon.
That's never a problem for me. Filet wins every time. I love seafood, but... nope. If filet's on the menu, then that's what I'm having.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Maddie shocked us by choosing macaroni and cheese over the child’s steak that was offered.
Interesting. When DD12 ordered the steak at Coral Reef (adult size) it came to the table and was about as big as her head. I mentioned that she'd never be able to finish it.

It was gone before I finished the sentence.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Our server delivered our bread once he’d cleared our starters, and without making a fuss about one of us being 5 years old, also dropped off a bowl of goldfish crackers along with it. It was a touch that delighted our little princess (and her dad).
That's great!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
We enjoyed watching the gorgeous sunset as we waited, and as it began to get dark Maddie became enchanted with the view.
Who wouldn't?

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Our entrees arrived shortly after the sun set.
Nice timing. And nice pics too, BTW.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
The verdict? While I would have preferred my steak with out the glaze, there was no denying that this was one excellent cut of beef. It was tender, unbelievably lean, and very flavorful. The potatoes were delicious, and the asparagus was perfectly cooked.
Gee, now the Denver sandwich and fries I just had don't sound so great.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Rice Krispy Sushi—cereal treats wrapped up with fruit leather and Swedish fish to resemble sushi accompanied by marshmallow wasabi and fondant pickled ginger.
That "sushi" is hilarious!

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
We settled up with our server (bill was $205—yay DxDP!!)
Gotta love the dining plan.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
We walked slowly toward the bus stops at the Magic Kingdom and found a bus waiting for us when we arrived. Unfortunately it was packed with a group of teens (a choral group I assume)
A coral group? Cool! Was Nemo there? Or Crush? That's just so ...




Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
When the driver played the princess announcement as Maddie entered, the all SHRIEKED at the top of their lungs and looked around frantically to see what princess would be joining them for a trip to CBR. Maddie was the one who finally had to point out to them that SHE was the princess.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
They sang loudly for the entire trip. Across the aisle from us was a teen girl who was not a part of that group, and she looked mortified that anyone would do that- and so did her parents.
Were they any good at least?

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
I actually felt sorry for them because they were wearing First Visit buttons, and I really didn’t want those inconsiderate kids to be their first impression of Disney.
Hopefully they had enough pixie dust to offset any boorish bus behavior.

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
fter what seemed like an eternity we arrived back to the peace and quiet of Aruba. One of us was paying the price for skipping nap time.
It was you, right?

Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Oh. Not you.

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Old 11-24-2012, 12:06 AM   #1469
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Originally Posted by Stringbean&Wingnut View Post
I hope your dining credits were actually worked out at VN!!!

I hadn't realized the coloring stations used Sharpies...that really doesn't make sense!! Why not crayons??

The pixie topiary area looks really cute!! Disney is a master of the details!
The Sharpie thing is so silly! I suppose that it's because Sharpie is a sponser, but still! Terrible thing to give to children.

The Pixie Hollow topiaries were some of my favorites. That little area was such a hidden gem!

Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post
About the sharpies- Preach it Sister!

Everett is at a great age for the kidcot stations now, but there is NO WAY I will ever let him know they exist. DS+permanent maker= disaster. I have thought maybe I'll bring my own crayons for him, but you know once he sees the other kids with markers, that it will be all over.

Exactly! It's such a pain. Kids who are old enough for Sharpies are too old for Kidcot!

Maddie is so good and patient waiting in those character lines, she is such a sweetheart! The photos always come out so cute, and I love hearing the stories about the funny questions she asks the characters.

She really loves meeting the characters, so that's the only reason why she's well behaved. If it was a character that only mom and dad wanted to meet I'd be telling a different tale.

We had such great interactions this year. So many CMs really stood out for making the M&Gs a trully memorable experience. Thank you.

Glad you actually got to spend some time browsing WS, it sounds like you guys had a great afternoon!
It was a really nice afternoon. Bryan and I could have browsed a bit more, but as you know you have to be grateful for what time you get when touring with the littles.

Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post

45 minutes is no fun, but at least it was for a good Snow White. When you see a CM doing their job well, it almost makes the wait bearable.

She was really THAT good at her job. I suppose that in the end it was worth it.

Lots of waiting in this chapter. We tried to keep our kids away from the masks and concentrate on getting Passport stamps instead. That seemed to help.

I wish that we'd thought of that. I just didn't have any patience for the coloring that day. We usually distract Maddie with shopping but there's just not much for kids to buy in France.

She's the best princess! I convinced my daughter she was a good role model because she reads books, and doesn't wait around for someone to rescue her.

Isn't she? I've always loved her for exactly those reasons. I'm a big fan of Mulan too.

Uh oh. Now Kathy's going to yell at you for violating her copyright. Better get lawyered up, quick!
That's why I had the kid do it. Hoping that she'll be so irresistible that Kathy will let it slide.

Originally Posted by katt789 View Post
I seriously don't get why character lines were SO CRAZY that week, maybe there was just a LOT of smaller kids who wouldn't do the other rides? I've got no clue, Tyler was happy! Ha!

That was our theory. The ride lines were always short, and the character lines were unbearable.

I love the pics all around WS, hahaha, I would totally get like that coloring too, I AM like that colouring bahah. I'm glad everything worked out with the DP credits being correct, what a weird mix up!

It makes me happy when characters are good! I hate the ones that are all "Hi" *signs* *hugs* "BYE", Ugh.

I definitely know the shirts you're talking about, definitely had a red one with a white leaf, they're pretty readily available up here baha! Love the pics of the hats in the Canada gift shop! Cute!
Ugghh! Bryan had his heart set on that shirt. Maybe next trip. I'm glad to know that they're made!

Originally Posted by WDWaddictt View Post
I have finally caught up. Your daughter is absolutely beautiful, especially with her big smile.

Loving your TR! Thanks for sharing!
Thank you so much! Thanks for joining in!

You win for favorite post of the day!!

Originally Posted by Bethislucy View Post
lol I'm a sharpie junkie too and have often wonder why they gave small kids sharpie's to color with.
Isn't it strange? I am glad to know that I'm not alone in my obsession.

Originally Posted by tralin View Post
Thanks for the call out Shannon. Isn't the Pooh and Tigger M&G classic? I loved the setting. Did Bryan ever find the shirt? Tons of them here. Be happy to send one in appreciation for the help you gave me. (Even though it caused serious undue stress and multiple changes for my ADR's. ) I think the Snow White was the same one we had for dinner and yes, she was amazing. Wait till you see the pictures. Can't wait see more pictures!!!!
Glad to do it! I had so much fun helping you that I should send you a gift! So sorry about the ADRs at least it worked out! Going to get over to your TR soon and get caught up again!

Originally Posted by amandaw View Post
Looks like y'all were really having a nice time at EPCOT! That's great that y'all got in some character meets. I can't believe Maddie didn't want to wait to meet Jasmine!

I was beyond shocked! She had never turned down a princess meet before!

And that is so frustrating about the dining credits after Via Napoli! I sure hope everything really was ok with them.

It ended up being ok, but I was so irritated with that lady!

All of the pictures are great!!
Thanks Amanda! How have you been?

Originally Posted by marDgreen88 View Post
While the dining credit mixup and the less-than-lovely VN manager don't sound great, the rest of the afternoon looks like a lot of fun!

I always enjoy the F&G pics! It's cool to see all the fairy topiaries. I recently watched one of the Tinkerbell movies for the first time so now I actually know what it's all about!

The Belle and Beast pics are my favorite! So cute.
The Pixie Hollow area was so cute! We're well versed in fairy so we may be biased.

Those are some of my favorites too! I was talking about our M&G from this trip today, and said that the Belle ones were ALL AMAZING. Totally love those girls for making my little girl's day over and over.

Originally Posted by StitchIsOurHero View Post
All caught up! I, too, must confess to being a sharpie addict! I have hidden D from the KidCot stations, although I may be ok since he doesn't like to color! I think just to be safe, I'll avoid them in March, too!
Yay for another Sharpie addict! Avoid them! It's just not worth it.

Originally Posted by smidgy View Post
everyone really, really has to check their DDP credits BEFORE leaving the restaurant!

years ago, they cahrged us double at Capt. jacks..(this was towrads the beginning of the trip) we didnt' look, or notice.. it didn't bite us in the butt untill our last day.

we had lunch at teppan edo our last day, with enough time to walk out the internaonal gateway and walk over and check out yacht and beach club (wow, tha WAS a longime ago, seeing as we had never been over there), and then maybe have a bit of pool time before the Magical Depress picked us up.

the waitress kept insisting we had no credits, and it took forever with a manager to sort it out.. after waiting forever while he called the resort (I had a printo out of the ADRS, and told him exactly how many credits each was) he finally came back all happy and smug..... "here's the problem! you probably didn't know that the hoop de doo is 2 credits each!"

Um, yes, I TOLD you that a half hour ago!!!!! I know every rest. at WDW that is 2 credits each, and rattled them off.

he kept wanting us to pay with our credit card and sort it our at the resort. we refused. it finally got settled, but by that time, all we had time for was to go back to Pop centruy, and have a cocktail and wiat for the bus .

the moral of the story, ALWAYS check your credits on the receipt after every meal!!!
I remembered reading that, and that's why I was checking! Thanks to you guys for sharing your story. In the end it was ok, but that lady was such a pain to deal with that I still left upset.

Originally Posted by CDolacki2003 View Post
We dined here in June and had the pistachio gelato. It was heavenly and we talked about it for weeks. We are going next October and I cannot wait to come back here for dinner.

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards
OOOOhhhh we'll have to make a point to get some next trip.

Originally Posted by TinksThree View Post
You got some great PP pictures and of course yours are great!! I loved the Tinkerbell and Fairies area...and I am grown up with no kids!
Isn't it cool back there? We were really glad that we ventured back there.

Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I hate it when that happens. Those gold laces are lousy if they're too loose, too. You just can't win sometimes.

It's totally a drag. I swear they just don't make things the way they used to.

Your wish is my command, my lady.

So cool Ponzi! Great job!

Yeah. "We don't have failure... only deferred success. Oh, and good luck when you leave school and get out into the real world."

I hate that! I was competing when I was Maddie's age, and I lost my fair share of times. I like to think that no lasting damage was done.

Hear that, Nebo?

And for the record. Yes, yes I am.

Well, it is Halloween, so it'd be okay, right?
Give it a try! Let me know how that works out.
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Old 11-24-2012, 12:17 AM   #1470
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Originally Posted by KatMark View Post
Great updates. I just love the pictures of Maddie with the Princesses. You can just see how much she eats it up.

Mr. Mark says that Maddie looks awesome in the racoon hat...good job, Maddie.

The photopass pictures of the three of you are great too.
Kathy I'll be so sad when she's not into it anymore. There is just nothing like watching a little kid light up when one of their heroes makes them feel special.

Thanks Mr. Mark! She had fun doing that.

Originally Posted by afwdwfan View Post
Well, it is a shame that you had to waste so much time waiting in line, but at least the better than average character experience makes it worthwhile.

The character lines this trip were crazy! It was worth it in the end though.

Well, you know, math in Italy is so much different than it is here.

I'm sorry the manager was difficult about it. Hopefully, they didn't overcharge you and this won't come back to haunt you.
It ended up being okay, but that lady was rude! A total bummer after a great lunch there.

Originally Posted by petals View Post
luvin the update

Originally Posted by Merry0405 View Post
I am loving your TR! Your daughter is adorable. My husband and I are heading to Disney next month - he just turned 50 and he's never been! I haven't been in years so we are really looking forward to it. I'm learning so much from your report, thanks for taking the time to write it
Thank you so much! I'm so glad that you joined in! If you have any questions, please let me know-I'd love to help.

How awesome! I'm sure that you and your DH will have an amazing trip!

Originally Posted by cindianne320 View Post
Love all the character interactions. Was Maddie ever afraid of characters? I'm afraid DS is going to be... He'll be 4 when we go.

I hope your Dining Credits were right in the end!
She was never afraid of any characters--except Mike W and Sully. They were just so big and realistic that she panicked a little.

It might help to let him watch them from the line for bit to see what he thinks. A good start would be the Fab 5 greets in Town Square. You can see everything that's going on, and they're usually really cuddly and fun there.

She has refused to sit on Santa's lap since she was 2 though. She'll tolerate the Easter Bunny, but not Santa. Not even now.

Originally Posted by RGirl View Post
Yikes - I've been totally MIA. Sorry.

Loved all the princess meet-and-greet pics. So cute! And what a fun time in World Showcase. Soooo wish I was there........

Hope all is well with you and your family, Shannon. Haven't talked in ages.
No need to apologize Roni-I've had no time either. I have missed chatting with you and Amanda though, we'll have to do better soon. Hope that everything is going well for you and Miss Willow.

Me too...I love wandering WS.
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