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Old 03-27-2014, 05:31 PM   #1
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,739

LIVE TRIP REPORT: March 27-April 6 Matey's Meander to tge Darkside & WDW

Cast of Characters:
Me (Minmate)
Dh (Joe)
Dd1 Cali, 15
Dd2 Meg, 14
DS. Brayden, turning 13 on trip (March 30)
Dd3 Jay, 11
FUN FACT: We will also be celebrating our 17th anniversary on March 29. We got married at Disneyland (before Disney weddings were "cool")

THE SCRIPT:
Drive straight through (26 hours) to Orlando
Spend 3 days at Universal offsite
Move to Caribe Royale
Exchange old tix for RFID ones and spend 1-3 days at WDW, depending on crowds, chaos and crabbiness levels.
Will hopefully be able to enact the offsite FP+ on March 31.

I have not done a live trip report before so be gentle!

Got home from work at 4, dh arrived shortly after me. Tidied up and packed up the car. On the road by 5. Heading into Twin Cities rush hour traffic accompanied by rainy, flaky snow. Good time to get outta here! I know we'll be out of this weather soon enough. The smell of someone passing gas in the car though... That nobody will fess up to... Hope that aroma dissipates soon!

DS: "We're really doing this!!!"
DD3: (before we made it to the end of our street): "Do we have any movies?!"
DD2: "I'm hungry!"
DD1: "This is gonna be a LONG time in the car!"
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:44 PM   #2
jenninaustin
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so excited!

so glad I happened to see this! Have fun!
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Really wish I had another countdown!

But our June 2014 visit was
Trip Report:June 2014 - "Ok, Mom...we'll let you meet a princess..."

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Old 03-27-2014, 06:35 PM   #3
Mcneil516
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This will be fun! Hey it's the first time I've read a trip report as it happens so don't worry!
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Old 03-28-2014, 05:17 AM   #4
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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Making pretty good time so far. Dh drove the first seven hours. I took the 5-hour overnight shift, thanks to a "truck driver bloodline" and Disomnia (the inability to sleep leading up to and during a Disney trip). Anyone else get "Disomnia?!"

About halfway there!
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:03 AM   #5
Tiggeye
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I love live trip reports. Can't wait to hear more. Good look driving and have some sunshine when you get to Orlando.
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:26 AM   #6
evcollins
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Old 03-28-2014, 01:41 PM   #7
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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Been raining most of the day. Hit some traffic in Nashville and a bit again in Atlanta. Patrols out in full force on I-75 to catch speeding and seatbelt compliance. Currently listening to Disney music and feeling a little conflicted that half our trip will be on the "Dark Side." Darn that Disney marketing for working so well on my emotions!

We are in good spirits though. Under the five-hour mark. No fighting and more than just tolerating each other, everyone is getting along! If you live with four closely-spaced teens/Tweens, you know, herein lies the most magical moments of the trip!
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-28-2014, 02:53 PM   #8
Reflections of Earth
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I'm following. Live trip reports are my favorite, can't wait to hear more!
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:07 PM   #9
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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We are in Florida!
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-29-2014, 04:48 PM   #10
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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What do you call Pixie Dust at Universal? We got some!

While picking up our tickets that were "Reissued" by UT (they sent us the wrong ones and then emailed a copy of the correct ones due to time constraints but we still had to get real paper tickets) - the guest relations person told me the park was already open and to get my map inside. I thought that was strange because it wasn't quite 8 a.m. I knew they sometimes open 15-20 minutes early but an hour?! Duh! They were opening for early admission to Wizarding World. We were already through the turnstiles before this made sense to me. So, change of plans - instead of heading to superhero section we followed the herd to WW.

Walked on, or waited less than 5 minutes for Forbidden Journey, the Hippograff and two rides (red and blue) on Dragon Challenge, Hulk and Spiderman. We did all that by 9:30 a.m. Felt a little guilty for entering an hour early b/c we are staying offsite but then again, if they wave us through, who am I to decline an extra hour?

Our wait at Poseiden's Fury was just because we had to wait for the next show. The show's actor interacted w/my dd1 and we ended up being the "chosen" family to follow along with the actor and got to be in the front row for all the action. Kinda cool!

Ate at Mythos. Changed our 1:30 ressie to 11 bc we were hungry and had already done so many rides. Got in right away and had awesome service with our server Robert. He was a very nice older gentleman. Ds1 was wearing a birthday button and Robert brought him a free Oreo shooter dessert.

After that, went on High in the Sky in Seussland. Waited in line for Cat in the Hat (about 20 minutes) and it broke down right before we got on. They cleared the que so we went back over to wait 45 minutes for Spiderman. By then it was raining and dh and I wanted to leave. Dd1 and Ds wanted to see if Cat in the Hat was open again so we did that. Had about a 10 minute wait.

It was thundering and lightning so we dashed out. Got soaked. Saw some pretty good lightning strikes. There were some areas by the front entrance that was ankle deep. But we were laughing all the way to the car. Dh is a coffee snob. Hates Starbucks so we found a Dunkin Donuts. It was closed. They had a power outage. Only store on the block without power. We joked maybe they just decided to turn the lights off and call it a day! lol...

Found another one and got hot chocolate, coffee and donuts. Made it back to our hotel and they were cleaning our room so we hung out in the lobby for about five minutes.

Took a nice 2-hour nap. Kids swam. Now we're contemplating Downtown Disney or back to IOA.

It's been fun and very manageable. I am still nervous about the WDW crowds I've read about and seen photos of on here. But I can't do anything about it so we'll see what happens over the course of the week.
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=

Last edited by minmate; 03-29-2014 at 04:55 PM.
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Old 03-30-2014, 12:27 AM   #11
catigger
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following along
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Old 03-30-2014, 06:57 AM   #12
MommaPeel
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Following along :-)

I totally get Disomnia! Bad thing is for my next trip I have a 21 to 30 hours of flights! But on the bright side of that I am in the happy place for 17 fun filled days. We (dbf and I) are looking at going over to the dark side for 2-3 days also. Shhh don't tell Mickey!

Can't wait to read more about your trip!
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Old 03-30-2014, 05:35 PM   #13
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MommaPeel View Post
I totally get Disomnia! Bad thing is for my next trip I have a 21 to 30 hours of flights! But on the bright side of that I am in the happy place for 17 fun filled days. We (dbf and I) are looking at going over to the dark side for 2-3 days also. Shhh don't tell Mickey! Can't wait to read more about your trip!
When is your trip?
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-30-2014, 05:47 PM   #14
minmate
I can show you the world... Don't you dare close your eyes!
I mostly just like the pretty colors
 
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Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,739

Spent last night at Downtown Disney. Picked up embroidered ears for my nephew. Walked the whole strip. There was definitely a crowd. We parked at Team Disney since it was a weekend and walked over.

Guest relations updated my old park tickets without issue. I've got them linked and will try for FPs at midnight.

Today we hit up rope drop at USF. It's DS' 13th bday. We rode Rip Rocket three times in a row bc that's what he wanted to do. Waited in a 40/45 minute line for Despicable Me. Was cute but wouldn't wait that long again.

Did Shrek, Simpsons and ate there. My dh loves the Simpsons so we putzed around and enjoyed the theming of that area for awhile. Ride Mib, Mummy (2x), Transformers (35 min wait), Disaster (long show but good to do once) the kids liked it. Also did ET. Line for Simpsons later in the day said 10 minutes but looked much longer so we skipped it and finished off with another ride on Rock it.

Had dinner at NBA City. It was fine but nothing special. Back at hotel now and hitting up the hot tub.
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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Old 03-30-2014, 06:06 PM   #15
minmate
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A couple thoughts before I head to the pool...

We are staying at the Comfort Inn and Suites Convention Center. It's just your basic hotel. If you have champagne tastes, this place probably would disappoint you. I was looking for something very specific: one room/suite that fits 6 people (4 teens/2 adults), close to Universal, queen size beds or larger (many places have doubles and the kids just wouldn't cut it on doubles together), and not cost us an arm an a leg. We got the room for $95/night, which I consider a real bargain for the space and ability to accommodate 6 people! The square footage is larger than AoA suites, which were about $320 a night when I was looking at them for the same dates.

This place meets all those requirements (less than 10 minutes from Universal, 2 queens and a queen pullout sofa). The beds are extremely comfy. There's a mini-fridge that holds our snacks and leftovers and enough room for all our stuff. There's a pool and hot tub - nothing special but the kids have enjoyed it. There's a complimentary breakfast, that is average. The kids eat the waffles, cereal and yogurt from it. I had a bagel and juice yesterday. I just had a granola bar that I brought today.

There are shuttles to WDW and USF/IOA but we didn't find the times all that convenient for us since they also drop off/pick up at two other hotels. I wasn't expecting to use it anyway. It is worth it to pay the $15 parking to be able to come and go on our own time.

Last night we were a bit annoyed by three charter buses taking up a ton of parking spaces but we found a spot to park and haven't really had any issues with noise or anything like that. I am looking forward to bumping up to a 2 BDR villa at the Caribe Royale in a couple days.

As for USF/IOA, I think we could've done both parks in one day (with good weather) and been fine. There wouldn't have been time for multiple rides and we would've felt more rushed. I'm happy with how we chose to do it. We bought 2-day (one park per day) tickets with a 3rd day free. We didn't get Express Pass and honestly, haven't really needed it. Aside from 3-4 lines that were between 30-50 minutes (headliners), we've had good luck with wait times.

Will head back to USF tomorrow morning and probably cut it short after hitting some of our favorites from today (Rip Rockit, Mummy, Simpsons) to come back to the room and eat our leftovers and pack for check-out on Tuesday.
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Numerous DL Trips as a kid, and a few WDW ones too!
Our Disney Family was Est. 3/29/1997 at Disney Land! DD 15 , DD 14 , DS 13 , DD 11
Family Trips include April 2004 Pop; June 2004 GF; April 2005 Pop; March 2007 DL Marriot MainGate; Sept 2008 ASMusic; March 2014 Caribe Royale


April 2005 WDW Trip Report: WDW w/4 Kids: 4/5/05-4/12/05 http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=794269

March 2007 Trip Report to DL: http://www.disboards.com/showthread....275&highlight=
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