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Old 12-07-2012, 11:52 AM   #61
bedillamouse
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Just found your report and enjoying it greatly!! I have two kids and have no idea how you did your previous trips with 5!! What a great mom!!

Your pictures are wonderful!!

Excited for more!
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Old 12-07-2012, 02:19 PM   #62
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Gorgeous photo of the riverboat.
Thank you.


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Lefou’s brew was so good, cannot wait to get it again.
I really, really liked it.


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Nice pics of the HM.
Thanks


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I never got to Sleepy Refreshments and it was on my list. That waffle looked so good.
It was my favorite food of the trip. It was so amazingly good. My son had the chicken one and he liked that, too...but I thought the Nutella one was just so delicious. I love that they make the waffle fresh. So it was really soft.


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The woman with the foot sounds a little dramatic. I am fat and stepped on someone’s foot and they blew it off.
Yeah, she was. I'm sure it didn't feel too good, but I just felt so bad for my son. It was my fault, but he's the one she directed her comments at.


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Starring Rolls is so good.
I agree...I kept finding reasons to stop in there for 'just a little something.'


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I don’t care for the F&W festival much either.
We seem to be in the minority. It just makes the World Showcase so busy, even on a 'quieter' day.


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Brave doing the orange side, I could never do that.
Funny...my son loved it, but he didn't want to do Rock N' Roller Coaster OR Tower of Terror.


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The chocolate sculptures were gorgeous.
They sure were...pretty amazing! Since they handed out free Ghirardelli chocolate squares, and soda in the Visa room, I found myself headed down that way quite a few times.


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The dinner at Trail’s End sounds good. Never been but may put it on the menu one night next time.
I wish we could have gone back. The food was good, and it was one of the most relaxing evenings we had.


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Great parade pics.

I love the Meerkat photo.

Great gorilla pics.
Thanks! This is a new camera for me, and my first DSLR, so thank you for the kind words of encouragement.


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We had Ghiradelli and sat on the little walls outside of Basin. Worked out pretty well.
I'll have to remember that. We said "not again" for going there at night when it's crowded. It was just too busy and loud to really enjoy.


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Your Indy pics are incredible.

Gorgeous night pics in Epcot.
Thank you!


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Beautiful pics of POP at night. We stayed in the same building behind you before the elevator.
I really love POP Century. A lot.


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MMM, tonga toast.
Wow, was it ever filling though! I ate the whole thing to feel like I got my money's worth, but it wasn't easy.


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Oh the Country Bear Jamboree. No I was with wanted to go inside. :O(
Aww...hopefully next time.


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Oh that was nothing, I would have screamed at both the wife and husband. Rude is not good.
Well, that kind of chaos probably brings out the worst in everyone. I'm so used to going on the "off season" that I just am not used to that kind of crowd at all. Next time there is parade going on, we're just staying put wherever we are and not attempting to move to another area of the park. Way too nerve-wracking!


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All caught up. Loving the report.
I'm so glad!
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Old 12-07-2012, 02:22 PM   #63
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Just found your report and enjoying it greatly!! I have two kids and have no idea how you did your previous trips with 5!! What a great mom!!

Your pictures are wonderful!!

Excited for more!

Thank you so much!!

It may have gotten a little crazy at times, but our trips with all five kids (and just me...DH doesn't do Disney) were really pretty good. And once, we brought along my sons' friend...so there were 6 kids...and one of me! My oldest then was like 14 or 15, though...so the older ones were a help to the younger ones.
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Old 12-13-2012, 02:07 PM   #64
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Day 11: “Animal Kingdom Evening EMH...why did you have to leave?”

Ah…another great day because it is another Animal Kingdom day!

We decided to head over to Rafiki’s Planet Watch early, because we were hoping to catch an animal in the veterinary area. There was nothing going on though, so we’ll have to try for that another time. We still enjoyed it over there, talking with a cast member who had some kind of hawk that had one eye missing (the hawk, that is!)




We also talked with a cast member about the different food they feed the animals there, as he was preparing a lot of the tubs of food in one of the rooms.




I am a sucker for Animal Kingdom souvenirs, because it is my favorite park!




We rode the Safari twice that day. Of course, no Safari ride is complete without Wilson. “…And that is why we ask you…all of you…”






This little rhino was so cute…rolling all around in the mud.




Flame Tree Barbecue is one of our favorite counter service restaurants. This turkey sandwich is really good.




And Andrew enjoyed the ribs.




We rode Everest 3 times during the day….and 5 more times during the last hour. We just kept going around and around until they shut the doors.




Although Andrew was dragging his feet about going to “Flights of Wonder,” he was really glad he did. He forgot how good it was.






He really enjoyed see the eagle, because he has a special affection for them. One day, 2 years ago when he was 12, he was down at the creek sitting on the dock fishing (up here in Alaska), when he hears this big “thud” behind him. He started to turn his head to look behind him, but out of the corner of his eye, he saw this GIANT bald head eagle just sitting on the dock right behind him. He was no more than a foot away. Andrew said he was both excited and scared. He just sat frozen and didn’t move. The eagle stayed for what seemed to him like an eternity, but in reality was probably only about 5 minutes. Then he took off. I told Andrew there are not a lot of people anywhere in the world who can ever have such an experience!




We rode Primeval Whirl and Dinosaur both a couple of times, and saw It’s Tough to Be a Bug (which was more fun than I remembered…partly because we got to go in the theater right away without waiting. I get really clausterphobic waiting down there otherwise.)

Usually these (which I was told by a cast member were females, and I think they are Siamang gibbons (?) but I could be wrong) are not very active when we’re walking by, but this day they were.




We also went to Festival of the Lion King, which again Andrew didn’t want to do (remember, he’s not a big music guy) but he enjoyed it more than he thought, mostly because, as he put it, “It wasn’t as long as I remembered.” LOL!












Back for another Safari ride. I love these Addax. Those antlers are amazing.




And yay! The lion was out!




After riding Everest until the park closing, we slowly made our way out of the park. I so miss the evening Extra Magic Hours at Animal Kingdom. I guess I can understand the decision, but it is SO beautiful there are night. We took our time leaving, and taking photos, and no one really hurried us along. I love Animal Kingdom so much.





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Old 12-15-2012, 05:27 PM   #65
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Great pics and update.

You got some great safari shots and the lion, lucky you. I think I have seen it once up.

The night time pics are gorgeous.

Seems you did not have crowds so that is good.
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Old 12-15-2012, 10:22 PM   #66
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You got some great safari shots and the lion, lucky you. I think I have seen it once up.
The best luck we've had with the lion has been at the end of the day. Once, we got really lucky and the lion went up on the rock, and roared really loud. Wish I had gotten a video!

I think a Safari driver would be my ultimate Disney job.
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:43 AM   #67
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I love AK. It's my favorite park. You are so lucky to see the lion out and about. That never happens to me. Ever.

8 rides on EE. Wow - I am impressed.

I love Flights of Wonder. I think its a great show. That bald eagle is pretty amazing and I can't imagine being in such close company, as Andrew was.

Could you please tell me again the name of the photoediting software that you use? I use iPhoto on my mac but its limited in terms of enhancements.

Edited to say: I just went back and found it - PicMonkey. I hope they have a download for mac. Do you find it user friendly.

Again - your pictures are spectacular and look like they belong in a magazine and not the DIS boards. I have a canon as well and I have had it for 3 years. I'm getting better and I have a fairly good eye, but my pictures are no where near this quality. Do you mind it I post a link to your TR in one of mine? I definitely would love some of my readers to see your pictures.
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Old 12-17-2012, 07:35 PM   #68
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8 rides on EE. Wow - I am impressed.
I so love that ride!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Could you please tell me again the name of the photoediting software that you use? I use iPhoto on my mac but its limited in terms of enhancements.

Edited to say: I just went back and found it - PicMonkey. I hope they have a download for mac. Do you find it user friendly.
Yes, that's it...PicMonkey. Right now it's free, but I think they are going to start charging pretty soon for the premium features. I find it EXTREMELY user friendly.


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Again - your pictures are spectacular and look like they belong in a magazine and not the DIS boards. I have a canon as well and I have had it for 3 years. I'm getting better and I have a fairly good eye, but my pictures are no where near this quality. Do you mind it I post a link to your TR in one of mine? I definitely would love some of my readers to see your pictures.
Oh my goodness, you are too kind. I wouldn't mind at all if you posted a link. I feel pretty honored...thank you!!
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:57 PM   #69
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Day 12: “Ugh…all these crowds! Let’s go mini-golf!”


Andrew and I only made it as far as the Pop Century bus stops before deciding on a ‘change in plans.’ The bus stops were all crazy busy full.

We decided that today we were going to take it easy, and take a break. On the spur of the moment, we hopped on the bus to Blizzard Beach, which has the “Winter Summerland” mini-golf course. As much fun as we are having in the parks, we really just needed a break.

So this trip report will be much smaller, because we really didn’t do a whole lot. We had a blast at the mini-golf course. I wish we had gone earlier in our trip because we wanted to come back again! Being we went during the middle of the day, when most people are at the parks, there was hardly anyone there.





First we did the “winter” side, because it felt a little like home, even if it was fake snow.












We had so much fun on the “winter” side, we paid for another round, this time on the “summer” side…




(I took this shot specifically to remind myself of how warm and sunny Disney is…so I can dream at times like this, when it’s been well below zero for days…)














That was a LOT of fun! It was a great break from the parks, but still staying in the Disney-mood! After a small snack and an ice-cold soda, we felt ready to tackle the Magic Kingdom for a little while, even if it was crowded, which it was.

We really didn't do a whole lot…it was pretty crowded, but just some of the more non-popular attractions with smaller lines.

We had lunch at Columbia Harbor House, where Andrew had chicken nuggets and fries…




And I had the Broccoli Peppercorn Salad, which was really good…




The crowds were pretty big here today…this is the line for Jungle Cruise (and you know how much that line winds all around in there)…




We decided to get some ice cream and head back to the hotel…






We relaxed at Pop Century, and ate dinner there (chicken penne pasta….yum!)….




And basically had a pretty quiet evening to end our pretty quiet day. Very nice and relaxing, and now we’re charged up and ready to hit the parks again tomorrow!
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:34 AM   #70
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What a great trip report! Your pics are amazing! I love that your youngest son is such a great sport and enjoying your time together. I also raised 5 kids but my youngest is 19 and he didn't get to visit WDW until 2010 when he and 2 of his older brothers & I took a trip. It was fun and I'll have to say very different experience touring with 3 boys I think the most fun they had was playing ping pong in the community hall where we stayed (at Boardwalk Villas). It's the little things like their bonding time together that truly made my trip

What an amazing experience your son had when that eagle landed near him! I bet he'll never forget it.
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:50 PM   #71
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What a great trip report! Your pics are amazing!
Thank you!


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It was fun and I'll have to say very different experience touring with 3 boys
Oh yeah....!


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It's the little things like their bonding time together that truly made my trip
Oh absolutely...I wholeheartedly agree.
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Old 12-24-2012, 06:53 AM   #72
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That golf course is adorable. I have been to WDW so many times, but I have never taken the time to visit either of the mini-golf spots. I really need to change that. So glad it was just the break you needed.

I love that penne pasta and chicken that they serve at Pop. It's so yummy! It must be very popular to stay on the menu this long.

Happy Holidays!
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Old 12-30-2012, 10:24 PM   #74
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Day 13: "Photography disaster and dining disappointment"

Um, I don’t have a lot of photos for today. “Why” will become evident shortly.

One of the nicest things about a longer trip is that we don’t feel the need to rush out every day. Some days we got going early, but some days it was nice to take it a little more easy.

We had a lunch reservation we were looking forward to in the World Showcase, so we decided to ride Mission: Space before hand. Now that he’s tried the “orange” side, Andrew really likes it. We also rode Spaceship Earth. Yes, again. Andrew never seems to tire of it. We also visited the Visa Lounge again for soda and chocolate.

We also tried Agent P’s Adventure, but on our previous trip, we had done the Kim Possible one in full, and so we had done many of the adventures already. So after one ‘adventure,’ we turned it back in.




By now, it was time for our late lunch reservation. Andrew and I headed over to Italy for our lunch at Via Napoli. We got there a little early, so we watched this guy…




Our lunch at Via Napoli was excellent. I just wish I could have eaten more of the pizza. It was so good, but so huge!




After lunch, we headed back over to Future World, and we did some things in Innoventions, including Sum of All Thrills…






rode Figment, and also Living With the Land…








One thing I had really been looking forward to was trying a hot dog at Germany. I had read here on the DIS that many people thought it was the best hot dog on Disney property. So off we went. I didn’t know to order it without the sauerkraut on the side, so first I went and scraped all that off, but I was excited to try the hot dog.

UGH! I hated it. Really hated it. It was the only food I actually tried to throw away (Andrew came to my rescue and at not only his brat, but my hot dog as well.) In all fairness, it probably is a very ‘good’ hot dog, in the sense of authentically German, but it was just NOT something I liked at all. I must not be a hot dog connoisseur because my idea of a great hot dog are the corn dog nuggets at Casey’s. No joke.

Oh well. On to dessert. Andrew and I headed into the caramel shop. I always get the dark chocolate salted caramel, so I thought I would try something new. So I ordered the pecan and chocolate covered pretzel. And it was so…yucky. I didn’t like it at all. It had no flavor. I was really surprised because I absolutely love the caramel.




So between my dinner and dessert fiascos, I was hungry! Andrew was sweet enough to walk all the way over to France with me and I got my beloved lemon tart. And it was everything I was expecting. It was great.




Andrew and I then headed over to find a place to watch Illuminations. Since we were there early, Andrew and I both experimented with our cameras. Being a new camera for me, I wasn’t really familiar with the video function (remember my attempt to video Smash Mouth?) So I had learned that in order to focus the lens for video, I had to switch a button on the lens itself (not the camera) from “AutoFocus” to “ManualFocus.” However, once the show started, I decided to switch from video to photo.

Except…I forgot to switch the lens button back from “ManualFocus” to “AutoFocus.”

But I didn’t realize it.

So the rest of the night, I kept taking photos. Thinking the whole time that all the camera settings were fine.

These are the only ones that turned out from Illuminations…






It was EMH at Magic Kingdom, so we decided to go over there for awhile. Poor Andrew…as soon as we walked in, the Electrical Main Street parade was just starting, and we couldn’t get by until it was over. Of course, I was thrilled, but this was the 3rd time Andrew was forced to watch it. We ended up with a great location, and I was so thrilled to be getting such great photos. Or so I thought...

It wasn’t until later that I found out the AutoFocus wasn’t on, and none…NONE…of my photos from the rest of the night turned out.

Andrew and I rode Jungle Cruise, Pirates, Teacups, and Space Mountain. It wasn’t until we went on the TTA and I was trying to take a photo of Andrew and me, that I realized something was wrong with my camera. I couldn’t get it to focus at all, and then I realized…I had forgotten to switch the tiny little switch. So all my photos looked blurry…like this...




Oh well. It was still a fun night. I love the Magic Kingdom late at night!
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Old 12-31-2012, 12:26 AM   #75
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I love your Illuminations pics! I just started using a new camera that I won at our company's Christmas party raffle (Fujifilm S400 16 megapixel 10x zoom) which is a simple point & shoot and took it down to Santa Monica pier this afternoon and it was tough enough for me to figure out which settings to use so I can't imagine using something more complicated - you did great!

I've enjoyed all of your pics and your TR - loved the food pics best
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