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Old 01-30-2013, 08:55 PM   #166
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Following along!!!
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:36 PM   #167
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Yea you started. YC looks nice. Love B&C neverd had room for ice cream tho. CAn't wait to read all about the trip and wonder if Polly raised the shower heads. At five four I couldn't stand under them two years ago.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:50 PM   #168
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I can't believe I didn't find your TR until you had already come back! Congratulations on an awesome prize! It's so cool to realize that these grand prizes are actually real lol I've entered dozens of times - I'm so happy for you and your family!

First of all, the Yacht Club looks awesome! We always stay at the BWV and when we've had boardwalk view, we look over at the Yacht and Beach Club and enjoy the pretty view esp at night with Wishes being seen over the Yacht Club. Can't wait to see how your first full day goes!
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:04 PM   #169
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Hurray, so glad you started the report. Love all the pictures!!! Looking forward to reading all about your trip!!!
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:19 PM   #170
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Need more! great start to the report!
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:59 AM   #171
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Great report!!! I love your writing style and amazing pictures.

Fantastic foreshadowing has me on the edge of my seat.

Major pixie dust at the Poly?

Drama on the return home?

Waiting patiently



NOT!
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Old 02-01-2013, 09:39 AM   #172
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Yay, a trip report by one of the winners! Do you know if any other winners did TR? I'd love to read them all!

We were at Beach Club a couple of weeks before you. Those resorts are gorgeous! You really lucked out with a first floor room!
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Old 02-01-2013, 02:18 PM   #173
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I'm following! I'm so excited can't wait to read more!!!
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Old 02-01-2013, 02:18 PM   #174
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Joining in and subbing!

So exciting...I'm more than a little jealous.
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:16 PM   #175
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Day Two - Sunday 1/20

So here we are on the first morning of our trip.. We get up bright & early and are ready to hit the.......FOOD. Ha!! You thought I was going to say 'PARKS', didn't you?

With all my Disney knowledge I’ve acquired, we should be at rope drop to jump on the recommended fast pass/busy morning strategy to avoid the crowds. However, we had already pre-decided to not go crazy on the first morning for a few different reasons…

1- I knew we’d be trying to adjust to the 3-hour time change.
2- We had park hoppers, so I figured we’d just come back to whatever we don’t get to on another (less busy?) day.
3- We wanted to get in some swim-time at Stormalong Bay today before we switch resorts.

So we head out of our room to breakfast at Cape May...








Before we go to breakfast, let me mention that during our trip we tried to take some quick videos that we emailed daily to my grandma back home, so she could see what we were up to day by day. I thought it would be fun to share them here as well! I enjoyed torturing DS, making him be the "reporter" in front of the camera. It actually wasn't torture - after this first video, he started loosening up a little & having fun with it. ha ha.

Here it is: Day Two Video


So anyways, on to Cape May. We REALLY loved it there. The characters in their cute beach outfits were a lot of fun.



Also, I think we had the perkiest waitress in all of Disney. I swear, she was the absolute epitome of morning Disney cheerfulness!! She was REALLY happy to be there.... I enjoyed it! But the boys thought she was downright crazy.. LOL. Food was great - Loved all the fresh fruit, mickey waffles with strawberries & whipped cream , oh, and that French toast bread pudding… drool.....




After breakfast, we head for the boat dock. On the way, Tyler checks out Stormalong Bay, which we have planned for later this afternoon!




can't wait !





We ride the boat over to Hollywood Studios, which was our best bet according to our crowd calendars.



Upon arrival, crowds were pretty bad. Some other travelers inside mentioned to us that it was “Christmas crazy” in there. Eek!! Really? CHRISTMAS? I sure hope it’s not THAT bad, I've only read about those kinds of horrible things on the internet!


We know it's Sunday on MLK holiday weekend… We know this was going to be our worst day for crowds, but we sure were hoping to still be fairly productive in the parks. On our first/last trip to WDW in 2011, we stayed on the exact same weekend, and it sure was a LOT less busy back then.. a LOT.

We chose this time of the year because our work schedules are much slower. We chose this week because DS would only be missing 4 days of school instead of 5 & it was the first week of his new quarter, and the first day after his semester exams, so he wouldn’t be missing any urgent testing or anything.. It’s that age-old debate of whether kids should be taken out of school or not… I put a lot of thought into it. Luckily DS does really well in school & has straight A’s. Also luckily our school allows for you to arrange for absences in advance and we were able to get a little work ahead of time, as well as download some of his work off the internet when we got back so he could work on it before he returns to school the following Monday.

Anyways, back to the crowds..... Let me fast forward a tiny bit & quote you a post from “easywdw.com” on Tuesday, 1/22, which sums it up for you:


"Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend was significantly busier than Disney was expecting, to the point where more people passed through Magic Kingdom’s turnstiles by 10:40am (Monday) than they were expecting for the entire day. Peak waits were: Dumbo: 110 minutes; Jungle Cruise: 90; Space Mountain: 140; Big Thunder: 120; Barnstormer: 70; Peter Pan’s Flight Pan: 90, Pooh: 75; Journey of the Little Mermaid: 120; Enchanted Tales with Belle: 70. Disney extended the close at Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom on Saturday on the day of. They extended the close at Magic Kingdom on Sunday and (Tuesday) as well. Crowds at all four Parks have been thousands higher than expected each of the last four days. Blame the College Program, South American tour groups, and the holiday. Things should die down by Thursday as we move into what is historically one of the least crowded weeks of the year. This past December was the busiest on record. January is looking to be the same."


Ugh.


Well, we decided to just go with the flow today & get some of the less-popular-and-easy-to-get-on rides out of the way first & then try for the big rides first thing tomorrow (Thank goodness we had park hopper tickets).

Actually it was probably a good thing that we couldn’t get on Tower of Terror or RnR Coaster first thing like Tyler wanted anyways, because I’m pretty sure those rides + breakfast buffets may not be the best combination !!!


We did American Idol, the Backlot Tour, the Movie Ride, & a couple more little things, then had a great late lunch at Sci Fi.



For lunch, I had a chicken caesar salad, DS had buffalo popcorn chicken (but hold the buffalo) and a shake, and DBF had a burger. Oh, and we also shared some fried pickles, which were pretty yummy!

We remembered to have DS sit in the “drivers seat” , so he could be harassed by the waiter.
After we ate, DS was presented with his “speeding ticket” that he was supposed to pay.




Lucky for him all our Disney prize gift cards got him off the hook this time!!


It was now time to bail on all the crowds & return to the YC for some Stormalong Bay !!






After seeing a couple fun videos on YouTube that kids had recorded of themselves going down pool slides at Disney, I recently bought a waterproof camera case for DS’s point & shoot camera, so we could take it to the pool with us. It worked great because I could still continue my photography obsession without having to lug around my big DSLR camera & DS had a ton of fun taking photos & videos with it in the water... and UNDER the water!




(If anyone’s interested, we got it on Amazon, look for “Polaroid Dive-Rated Waterproof Camera Housing”.)




After our swim time, we walked over to Epcot to find some dinner & hopefully watch Illuminations for the first time… The walk over to the International Gateway from the resort was nice, not too far at all.


Before dinner, we wandered around a little..




I love the Seas area..



more wandering..



I also managed to treat DS to his first “Beverly”! heh heh. I’m bad, I know.




A bit later, we timed it right to be finishing up our dinner at La Cantina de San Angel, just in time for Illuminations. We were eating in the outside little patio that sits out on the water. However, just as soon as the show was about to start, like a hundred people rushed in & crowded around our table, trying to stand at the railing, so there went our view . Oh well, it seemed like a good idea at the time! We stood up & managed to get a sliver of a view to the side.



Afterwards we returned to the YC, grabbed a couple ice cream cones at the Beaches and Cream take-out window, and realized just how dangerous it was to be staying in a hotel with an ice cream parlor onsite & a gift card burning a hole in our pocket!! (thank goodness calories don’t count on vacation.)




I'll include a few thoughts on the resort here… After exploring both the Beach Club & Yacht Club, we decided we preferred the YC’s theming to the BC. However the only downfall is that you have to walk over to the BC for everything. DBF really would’ve loved it if we had a closer mug station & if the Marketplace was a little easier to get to from our side. I’m sure if Hurricane Hanna’s was up & running during our trip that would’ve been a real big plus though, too.

Since we live in the desert, we really enjoy the Disney resorts on the water, and love taking those boat rides as much as we can. Transportation was great here. The nice walking paths were quite nice as well.

Stormalong Bay was awesome & we were glad we had nice weather so we could swim. We really enjoyed exploring all the different areas of SAB - the waterfalls, lazy river, the sand bottom.

I would definitely recommend the YC, as long as you don't mind the Marketplace & mug options being a bit more out of the way than if you stayed at the BC. Lastly, I found the CM's at this resort to be really quite outstanding.. great service in the lobby & everywhere else.


So.... maybe while we didn’t get a TON of things accomplished in the parks today, we definitely had a full, fun day. Off to bed !
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:31 PM   #176
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No matter how much or how little you do a day in Disney is always great. Nice and easy first day. Smart move to get adjusted to the time difference. Wish my meeting would fly us into Vegas the day before. Nope going to try to stay awake.
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:35 PM   #177
lvjen777
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ronnmel View Post
Yay, a trip report by one of the winners! Do you know if any other winners did TR? I'd love to read them all!

We were at Beach Club a couple of weeks before you. Those resorts are gorgeous! You really lucked out with a first floor room!


Hope you enjoyed your stay at the Beach Club! They sure are gorgeous resorts!! I'm the only one one in our winner's "group" (which is approx. 1/3 of ALL the OMDD winners) who has done a TR. (the pressures on me now! ) One other winner started a Pre-TR, but never finished an actual TR.

Thanks for reading along!
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:35 PM   #178
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Great report!

As yesterday was the last day of this year's contest and I have not been contacted by Ventura,I am enjoying your trip report very much since we cannot afford to go this year. Thanks so much for writing.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:04 AM   #179
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I've just returned from my Disney trip and have caught up with your TR on your first two days! Looking forward to reading the rest!
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:54 PM   #180
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Loved all the pictures. Really enjoying your TR! Also really loved the video idea and your son was so cute talking about your plans.
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