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Old 07-03-2014, 10:17 PM   #1
khertz
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Adventures at 40"! May 2014 TR *COMPLETE* 9/10 **NEW** Italy ABD TR link posted 9/29


The evening star is shining bright
So make a wish and hold on tight
Thereís magic in the air tonight
And anything can happenÖ


Hello friends, old & new! Welcome to my 8th trip report on the DIS boards! I canít wait to share our adventures from our sort of last minute, definitely very short May weekend trip. Despite the fact that this was nowhere near any of our first trips, we still managed to experience some all new things. Thatís one of my favorite things about Disney World, despite numerous trips over the years, there are still new things to try! But here I am going on as if you know me. Most of you do, but for those that donít how about some introductions?


05-079 by disneymom1024, on Flickr

Thatís our family! I will be your narrator for this tale with possibly some additional posts from DH, as he had some time on his own to report on. Iím 29 years old. My primary job is wife to DH and mom to 3.5 year old DS. By trade, Iím also a pediatric hematology/oncology nurse at an outpatient infusion clinic. I always knew I wanted to work with pediatric patients, but I never would have guessed how much I would fall in love with oncology. Thereís really nothing like it. Pretty much everyone that knows me knows that my love for Disney World runs deep! I have always enjoyed writing, so you can imagine I was extremely happy to find this corner of the Internet where I could write about my Disney World trips and have people actually care about it! I also very much enjoy reading TRs and usually have a subscribed list of about 30+ TRs at any given time.

Next up is DH. He probably doesnít want me to put in writing that he is 30 years old, but alas, itís happened! Heís officially out of his 20s! Aside from being an awesome husband and father, he is an engineer in the oil field working specifically with radiation sources. Interesting stuff, right? But more importantly, at least for you readers, he has developed a strong interest in photography, and loves being behind the lens during our Disney trips to get that perfect shot. He loves Disney World just as much as I do, although he is not quite as interested in the planning aspect. While I like to plan endlessly from the moment we decide when we are taking our trip, he prefers to go over plans when they are nearly relevant, such as just before our 180 day mark for ADRs and 60 days for FP+. He enjoys collecting Vinylmations, Disney photography, and all things Donald Duck.

And finally, thereís DS. Like I said at the beginning, he is 3.5 years old, and such a handful! He definitely keeps us laughing, but he has his moments where he can drive us absolutely crazy. Such is being 3 years old, though, I suppose! He has been brought up correctly to love all things Disney, and was just as excited about this trip as we were. If you read my last TR, you know that DS quickly proclaimed Cinderella Castle to be HIS Castle on our last October trip. I have to tell you, he has since claimed all of the other park icons, and they can now be known as HIS big hat, HIS big ball, and HIS big tree. He is a big fan of pretty much any show on Disney Jr, loves Disney movies especially Cars, Planes, and Toy Story, and a huge lover of all things transportation, particularly trains, and as we learned on this trip, Disney buses, as he excitedly pointed out Every. Single. One.

The biggest milestone for us on this trip was that after months and months of measuring him almost daily, he made the 40Ē mark! We were really excited to try out riding some of our favorite rides as a family that had previously been off limits. Hence, the title of this Trip Report!

Since I didnít do a PTR for this trip, hereís a brief overview of our plans...

WHEN: May 1st-5th

WHERE: The Wilderness Lodge! Our first time staying onsite in several years (not since our honeymoon in 2007) and our very first time staying deluxe!

WHAT: One night in Destin followed by three nights at Wilderness Lodge. We had 2 day base tickets, so our only park days were Saturday and Sunday. Another first for us this time with DS was driving. We havenít done that since our last trip prior to DSís arrival when I was about 6 months pregnant with him. But since it was a short trip and we wanted to save money, we drove rather than our usual mode of flying Southwest.

WHY: Why? Because I need Disney in my life! In a nutshell, we were not supposed to visit Disney World in the year 2014. DH and I are taking part in the upcoming DIS Unplugged Viva Italia ABD trip later this year, which has been saved for and in the works for several years. But thenÖyou know, you just start thinking, how can I get myself there even for just a little while? I pitched the idea to DH and he was on board, so we started looking at prices and dates. We started looking at the MK resorts simply for their proximity to the parks because our time there was so short and we didnít want to have to worry about getting back and forth to our usual resort, Wyndham Bonnet Creek, to maximize our time in the parks. There was a spring room discount out for the time we were looking at, and thatís how Wilderness Lodge came within the realm of possibility and it met our needs!

Well, I hope that didnít get too long winded and that you are still interested in reading about our wonderful, albeit short, trip to the World! Despite that short time, we managed 3 DIS meets, all of them people I have looked forward to meeting for a long time. It was so perfect that our trips all lined up so well! Also, my aunt and uncle were there at around the same time with their three kids, all on their first trip! And I also had the chance to meet up with an old friend who was in town with her husband to run the Expedition Everest 5K. I couldnít believe we had so many people to meet up with in such a short amount of time, but we managed it all! So I hope you will follow along as I share all the details of our deluxe May weekend in Disney World!
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Last edited by khertz; 09-29-2014 at 08:58 PM.
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:18 PM   #2
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Table of Contents


Table of Contents

Introduction

Thursday May 1st
Day 1 Part 1: Let's Hit the Road!
Day 1 Part 2: Beach Bummin'

Friday May 2nd
Day 2 Part 1: Any Dream Is Possible, Wishes Do Come True
Day 2 Part 2: Welcome Home!
Day 2 Part 3: So Make A Wish and Hold On Tight

Saturday May 3rd
Day 3 Part 1: I Am Not Your Mother - BREAK THOSE PLATES!
Day 3 Part 2: A Spectacular Journey Into the Movies!
Day 3 Part 3: First DIS Meet!
Day 3 Part 4: What Foolishness Would You Like to See?
Day 3 Part 5: Rain, Rain, Go Away!
Day 3 Part 6: Some Imagination, Huh?

Sunday May 4th
Day 4 Part 1: Welcome to a Place Where Dreams Come True
Day 4 Part 2: PLEASE Don't Fling Me In That Briar Patch!
Day 4 Part 3: Just Around the Corner is a Fantasyland
Day 4 Part 4: It's A World of Laughter, A World of Tears
Day 4 Part 5: Start Pumpin' Up the Party Now
Day 4 Part 6: DIS Meet #2!
Day 4 Part 7: Away We Go...
Day 4 Part 8: ...It's a Festival of Fantasy!
Day 4 Part 9: Resort Launch Relaxation
Day 4 Part 10: Just Keep Spinning, Just Keep Spinning
Day 4 Part 11: It All Starts With a Wish
Day 4 Part 12: The Main Street Electrical Parade
Day 4 Part 13: One More DIS Meet!
Day 4 Part 14: Goodnight, Magic Kingdom!

Monday May 5th
Day 5 Part 1: The Long Journey Home


Final Thoughts
Italy ABD Trip Report Link!



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Old 07-03-2014, 10:40 PM   #3
khertz
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Day 1 Part 1: Let's Hit the Road!

Day 1: Thursday May 1st

Before starting off our road trip on Thursday morning, DS and I had to complete our nightly ritual of counting down the days to our trip by taking down the very last Mickey head from our countdown calendar Wednesday night!


01-001 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Not sure why he looks terrified...


01-002 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Okay, that's better!

The next morning, we had planned to leave by 9 am, but we were actually ready to go a little early and hit the road at 8:45 am. Every minute counts when you're traveling with a little one and have to plan in frequent breaks!

DS was an angel all morning as we drove. He played a little on his iPad, but mostly he was happy to color and put together jigsaw puzzles on his lap board. We bought that for our trip we took to Tennessee last year, and it definitely came in handy once again!


01-007 by disneymom1024, on Flickr

We drove until about 11:30 am when we made it into Mississippi.


01-008 by disneymom1024, on Flickr

We stopped for lunch at Dairy Queen, which was good because we don't have them around here really. I think one just recently opened where we live but we haven't been to it yet. I got a burger and DH & DS both got chicken strips. But of course, everyone goes to DQ for the desserts! We got 2 small Blizzards to share, one cookie dough and one peanut butter. Delicious!

Full from lunch, DS conked out in the back seat as soon as we got back on the road and slept for about an hour and a half. When he woke up, we made a bad decision to stop for gas just before getting to Pensacola, and ended up at a gas station that was pretty expensive, and when we went inside to use the restrooms, the women's was closed for repairs, so I had to hurry in the men's. EW!! I couldn't wait to get out of there. Sorry to my guy readers, but seriously...just ew. DH was annoyed with me for making him stop there, and in retaliation, he spilled the remnants of the sunflower seeds he had been chewing on all day all over my feet and bag!!


01-009 by disneymom1024, on Flickr

Okay, he didn't really do it on purpose...At least I don't think so. But again, EW!

After that, we didn't stop again until we made it to our resort in Destin. This was right after all of the rain and flooding, which we literally ran into as we were trying to get to our building from the guard station. We just hit a spot in the road where we literally couldn't go anymore because it was completely flooded! There was even a car floating in the parking lot that we could see ahead of us! Luckily our resort was on somewhat higher ground and we were able to find a roundabout way to get there. We got checked in and our room was ready! So we headed upstairs to check it out.


01-010 by disneymom1024, on Flickr

As you can see, DS made himself comfortable right away and started watching Word Girl while I went around to snap some photos of our unit on my iPhone.


01-011 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
The living room


01-013 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Dining room & Kitchen


01-014 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
This is back to the entry way, the open door is the second bedroom and the kitchen is to the right


01-015 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
DS's bedroom


01-016 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Second bathroom


01-017 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Master bedroom


01-018 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Master bath


01-019 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
Jacuzzi tub!


01-020 by disneymom1024, on Flickr
And finally...the view!!

The waves were pretty crazy from what we could see, and we wanted to get to bed pretty early that night, so we decided not to head to the beach with the intention of getting in the water. Instead we looked around for a place close by for dinner that we could walk to on the beach to let DS put his toes in the sand and in the water.

UP NEXT: The beach! (I promise, it won't be long before we make it to Disney! We didn't take many more pics this day, but I just can't get to them tonight.)
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:23 PM   #4
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I am so here!
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:31 PM   #5
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YES new TR! I am here, of course. You know the crying with laughter emoji? That was me when I read "his big ball and his big tree." Your DS kills me!

Except for the lame gas stop, travel day seemed to go pretty well. I am so excited to hear all about WL! I won't be on the DIS much this week because I leave for Disney Saturday (!!!) but I will catch up when I get back!
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:34 PM   #6
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I am here! I wouldn't miss this! So excited to hear about your stay at Wilderness Lodge!

I must say that I totally understand your disgust with the men's bathroom, haha. I have to clean the bathrooms at work and let me just say that urinals are not my friends. Yuck.

On a different note, I can't wait to read the rest!
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Old 07-04-2014, 12:17 AM   #7
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Yay, you've started!

Sounds like things went pretty well for your road trip. Wish we could drive to WDW, but it would be 24 hours each way! I think Izzy has a similar puzzle to that one (little Minnie/Daisy one in a tin from the Target dollar section). Glad he was able to amuse himself with the puzzles and coloring. And DQ is always a good road trip stop! We have tons of them around here (HQ is here), but we always stopped at plenty on road trips as a kid. Can't beat an ice cream break!

Your place in Destin looks beautiful! Can't wait to hear more about the trip.

Happy 4th weekend!
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Old 07-04-2014, 06:47 AM   #8
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Yay! You started!

Can I just comment (and this is random - I warn you) that I think Mississippi has the BEST welcome sign! Thanks to wonderful DISers like you I get to see it because I have never seen it in person. Hey - its the little things.

Umm - yeah - that's A LOT of sunflower seeds on your feet.

Love seeing Paxton in his more recent pictures. He is getting so grown up.

Your condo was so beautiful. What a nice unit.
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Old 07-04-2014, 09:00 AM   #9
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Joining in so excited to read more!
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Old 07-04-2014, 09:36 AM   #10
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I'm here and so so excited to read this! I'm actually very curious to see how often we were in the same place at the same time. I'm betting it was a lot! Hahah. Can't wait to read more!
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Old 07-04-2014, 10:12 AM   #11
khertz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leshunlenese View Post
I am so here!
Welcome!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by courtneybelle View Post
YES new TR! I am here, of course. You know the crying with laughter emoji? That was me when I read "his big ball and his big tree." Your DS kills me!

Except for the lame gas stop, travel day seemed to go pretty well. I am so excited to hear all about WL! I won't be on the DIS much this week because I leave for Disney Saturday (!!!) but I will catch up when I get back!
Welcome, Courtney!! I know exactly the emoji you're thinking of, and he pretty much makes me do that daily. We often have random conversations in the car about which of his icons we will visit first on our next trip.

Ahhhh, have SO MUCH FUN on your trip!!!!! I can't wait to read all about it when you get back!

Quote:
Originally Posted by WildernessExplorer04 View Post
I am here! I wouldn't miss this! So excited to hear about your stay at Wilderness Lodge!

I must say that I totally understand your disgust with the men's bathroom, haha. I have to clean the bathrooms at work and let me just say that urinals are not my friends. Yuck.

On a different note, I can't wait to read the rest!
So happy to see you, Alex! I really can't wait to share WL because it was perfection...

I used to work in a restaurant and had to clean the bathrooms, and OMG what do men DO in there?! Women's restrooms are not always a picnic either, but it was pretty awful in there so I got in and out as quickly as humanly possible.

Thanks for joining in!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dugette View Post
Yay, you've started!

Sounds like things went pretty well for your road trip. Wish we could drive to WDW, but it would be 24 hours each way! I think Izzy has a similar puzzle to that one (little Minnie/Daisy one in a tin from the Target dollar section). Glad he was able to amuse himself with the puzzles and coloring. And DQ is always a good road trip stop! We have tons of them around here (HQ is here), but we always stopped at plenty on road trips as a kid. Can't beat an ice cream break!

Your place in Destin looks beautiful! Can't wait to hear more about the trip.

Happy 4th weekend!
Oh Lord, I guess driving to Disney is nowhere in your future!! It's about 12 hours without stops, so without DS we have done it all in one shot, but we knew we had to do it a little differently with a toddler. He can really go one way or the other on long car trips, but he was great that first day! He kept himself really well entertained with coloring and other games and puzzles we brought and didn't watch the iPad nearly as much as I had thought he would.

The DQ ice cream definitely helped keep us going! It was a great treat.

Hope you have a great holiday weekend as well!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MEK View Post
Yay! You started!

Can I just comment (and this is random - I warn you) that I think Mississippi has the BEST welcome sign! Thanks to wonderful DISers like you I get to see it because I have never seen it in person. Hey - its the little things.

Umm - yeah - that's A LOT of sunflower seeds on your feet.

Love seeing Paxton in his more recent pictures. He is getting so grown up.

Your condo was so beautiful. What a nice unit.
Welcome aboard, Mary Ellen!

That is DEFINITELY random, but I'm glad it made someone happy because I almost didn't even bother posting it! I think we took a picture of the sign when we entered Alabama but completely dropped the ball when we made it into Florida so I was going to keep them all in. I'm glad I left it!

He chews on those sunflower seeds the ENTIRE day when we are driving, so yes, it was a lot to spill on me and it was not pleasant!!

He really is growing fast. He is so mature sometimes that I find I have to remind myself that he's only 3 years old and he's still going to act like it.

It was a beautiful place! And close to a lot of restaurants and shopping. We are not big beach people, but I could see ourselves staying there again if we ever found ourselves in Destin for a long weekend or something.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jediprincess23 View Post
Joining in so excited to read more!
Awesome!! Welcome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by marDgreen88 View Post
I'm here and so so excited to read this! I'm actually very curious to see how often we were in the same place at the same time. I'm betting it was a lot! Hahah. Can't wait to read more!
Yay, Marissa!! I'm thinking it was probably a lot too, because we always seemed to have just missed each other!
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JULY 1994 // Offsite & Universal Studios & Busch Gardens | APRIL 1998 // All Star Music & Universal Studios |FEBRUARY 2001 // All Star Music & Universal | MARCH 2003 // All Star Music & Universal // Hard Rock Hotel | FEBRUARY 2004 // All Star Music & Universal // Royal Pacific & Sea World | OCTOBER 2007 (Disneymoon!) // Port Orleans French Quarter & Universal Studios // Royal Pacific | DECEMBER 2009 // Wyndham Bonnet Creek PTR/ TR | JULY/AUGUST 2010 // Wyndham Cypress Palms TR | NOVEMBER 2011 // Wyndham Bonnet Creek PTR/TR | MAY 2012 // Disneyland // Wyndham Dolphin's Cove TR | AUGUST 2012 // Disneyland 5 Year Anniversary Trip // Peacock Suites TR | OCTOBER 2012 // Wyndham Bonnet Creek PTR/TR | OCTOBER 2013 // Wyndham Bonnet Creek & Universal // Royal Pacific PTR/TR | MAY 2014 // Wilderness Lodge TR | SEPTEMBER 2014 // ABD DIS Exclusive Viva Italia & Disneyland Paris Show No Fear! DIS Exclusive Viva Italia + DLP Sept 2014 | MARCH 2015 // Disneyland // Wyndham Dolphin's Cove | OCTOBER 2015 // Wyndham Bonnet Creek & Universal | FEBRUARY 2016 // ??
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Old 07-04-2014, 12:26 PM   #12
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I'm here and joining in!


I still can't believe I missed the fact that you were, literally, in my neck of the woods for the night! Ugh, such slacking on my part. Landon would have loved to have met Paxton. He thinks any guy older than 2 is immensely cool, especially if they talk to him.


That looks like a pretty nice room. And you can't beat the view; I do love our beaches here.
And yeah, that storm was brutal. It took out our car.



Driving with a 3 year old, I can only imagine how that went....
Blizzards are the best. I know other places try to copycat them, but there's nothing like an actual one from DQ.
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Old 07-04-2014, 02:51 PM   #13
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Of course I'm in!!!! Looking forward to another round of adventures. And FYI, DS can keep the Hat, the Ball, and the Tree... but I'm taking the Castle back!!!

You know, this feels like such a Disney thing. Most parents measure their children simply to track their height. Disney families measure and measure and measure just to reach that magical number. I love it!!

God, I know I see him on FB, but it's still amazing to see how quickly Pax is growing.

YESSSSS!!!!! See, your experience in the gross men's washroom!!! That will now be my excuse for "accidentally" using the women's washroom in Disney!!! Finally a good alibi other than stupidity! THANK YOU!!
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Old 07-06-2014, 01:46 PM   #14
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Woo hoo! Following once again on this trip report!!
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Old 07-06-2014, 03:21 PM   #15
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I'm here and joining in!


I still can't believe I missed the fact that you were, literally, in my neck of the woods for the night! Ugh, such slacking on my part. Landon would have loved to have met Paxton. He thinks any guy older than 2 is immensely cool, especially if they talk to him.


That looks like a pretty nice room. And you can't beat the view; I do love our beaches here.
And yeah, that storm was brutal. It took out our car.



Driving with a 3 year old, I can only imagine how that went....
Blizzards are the best. I know other places try to copycat them, but there's nothing like an actual one from DQ.
It really is a bummer we both didn't realize it sooner so we could have worked something out!

The beaches are so beautiful! We hadn't been in years, so it was nice to see it again, even for only a short time. I was definitely glad the storm didn't completely wipe out the resort, but the golf course was totally unusable because it was so flooded. Really sucks that you lost your car. That was terrible to see cars floating in the parking lot when we pulled up!

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Originally Posted by DisneyKid4Life View Post
Of course I'm in!!!! Looking forward to another round of adventures. And FYI, DS can keep the Hat, the Ball, and the Tree... but I'm taking the Castle back!!!

You know, this feels like such a Disney thing. Most parents measure their children simply to track their height. Disney families measure and measure and measure just to reach that magical number. I love it!!

God, I know I see him on FB, but it's still amazing to see how quickly Pax is growing.

YESSSSS!!!!! See, your experience in the gross men's washroom!!! That will now be my excuse for "accidentally" using the women's washroom in Disney!!! Finally a good alibi other than stupidity! THANK YOU!!
He will fight you for it, I'm sure!! His Castle is still his favorite.

I can't believe what a true statement this is! We were literally measuring him day and night, with shoes and without, hoping to make that magic height of 40". He was getting sooooo tired of it by the time the trip rolled around! But we had gotten good at getting him to stand up tall, so that was good.

I sincerely feel bad for guys who have to use those disgusting gas station restrooms.

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Woo hoo! Following once again on this trip report!!
So wonderful to have you on board once again, Dave!
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