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Old 07-02-2014, 11:23 PM   #1
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Tulsa Oklahoma
Posts: 346

"I See Dumbo!" our May 2014 TR with a toddler

I'm going to start off by saying this is my first TR, I started a PTR as you can see in my siggy but failed miserably. In the days leading up to our trip a week to be exact my father fell ill and ended up in the hospital, after several days in the ICU he passed away. Needless to say, the week leading up to our trip was hectic to say the least. We couldn't have planned our departure more perfectly, the stress and the sleepness nights from the prior week made this an even more special getaway for us all. So here goes, bear with me lol

Our cast:
Favorite Resort: Boardwalk...although AOA is a tie for some different reasons
Favorite Park:MK, Epcot-another tie impossible for me to choose
Favorite Meal: Hands down BOG Lunch, you will see why in this trip report
Favorite Ride: Soarin, everytime I ride and everytime I hear that music, makes my heart swell. I know I know but I love it, would LAAAAAVVVVVVE to see it upgraded to a new & improved video, but the current version is good with me.

Favorite Resort: AOA
Favorite Park: HS
Favorite Ride:Soarin

DD Macie-23 ms (21 at time of travel)
Favorite Resort:she loves em all lol
Favorite Park:MK
Favorite Ride:DUMBO & Aladdins Magic Carpets (more on that later)

One of our Photopass pics during our trip. I realize we were pretty far apart from the Mouse oops

So let's start on departure day, we left our humble abode at around 730 but after a quick pit stop at Mcdonalds for a coffee and some breakfast burritos it was around 8 before we got going. Yes, we drove, all 1800 some odd miles we drove. Our stop tonight was in Albany GA and there is really nothing eventful to talk about here. I was nervous about traveling with a almost 2 year old for that long of a stretch and for good reason. However she was an angel in the car! We made about 4 stops possibly 5 before we got to Albany. Each one setting us back about 30-45 mins behind schedule but we arrived somewhere around 1130-midnight. About the last hour and a half our poor girl started to BREAK DOWN she wanted out of that car seat but we made it.

A few things to note....I will not stop in Albany again, just because it was more out of the way than I realized and it slowed us down quite a bit. There were several hundred miles right through the middle of Georgia we had to make it through and while the traffic wasn't bad The max speed was usually 60 for about 10 miles then you hit a small town and it was back down to 35. This was irritating...very irritating. Another 'rule' if you will that I made for us in the event we drive again is to split the entire drive in 2 days not 1 and a half. Although as our DD ages I don't think the long drive will be an issue. 10 Hours ok, 13 in the car way too much. We loaded up the kindle with Frozen, Pirate Fairy and an episode of The NOtekins. Unfortunately that's all it would hold as I have a small kindle but we also had FantasylandMom's vacation videos which she LOVES to watch along with the Bosox family's vacation videos on our phones. Another thing that was great in the car for her was the small magnadoodle we got her. She loved it and the pen was attached so she didn't lose it.

We stopped at Arbys since it was right in front of the hotel we stayed at and grabbed some grub before bed. We didn't really stop much for food, it was more for diaper change and refueling-the car that is . All in all, very uneventful first day. Tomorrow morning though, the excitement builds! On our way HOME and a quickie shower before we meet the Snow Queen

My quick tips for toddler travel
-my girl HATED the lay down changing tables, so as long as she only had a wet diaper I figured out to just stand her up and change her. She still didn't like it but it kept her from throwing a fit and trying to hold her down while I changed her.
-Albany GA, no , the town looked ok where we were, we stayed over by the mall but too difficult to get to not to mention I thought I would google what Albany was all about while trying to catch some zzz. Apparently it is in the top 100 list of cities in the US where violent crime occurs.....then I couldn't sleep. Ak! lol
-Having snacks for our DD helped so much. Fruit snacks and some of the $1 tubs of cheez its etc. We also had packed a few small toys and a couple stuffies for her to play with in the car.
-Bedrails, get them, you will need them. I didn't think we would but Macie fell off her bed the first night. It took my breath away...thank goodness she had no bumps or bruises and was ok but it did scare her pretty bad.

That's it for now, next update coming soon, thanks for reading so far.....Here is a sneak peak and a link to our vacation video. We didn't realize we had the camera on the wrong setting but for a first timer editing video it turned out well I think
Our Disney Vacation Video
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Old 07-03-2014, 01:15 PM   #2
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I cant wait to read more I am braving Disney World this September with a almost 3 year old I figured its a trip really for me to see her reactions and being 2 still its the cheapest we will ever go. Sorry to hear about your Dad loosing a loved one is never easy.
Kaelyn : Mommy(Lindsay) Mandy(Me)
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Old 07-05-2014, 01:19 AM   #3
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Tulsa Oklahoma
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Originally Posted by eboothecat View Post
I cant wait to read more I am braving Disney World this September with a almost 3 year old I figured its a trip really for me to see her reactions and being 2 still its the cheapest we will ever go. Sorry to hear about your Dad loosing a loved one is never easy.
Thanks, it was a very hard week prior to our trip but it just made it that much sweeter at the end. I know both my mom and dad were with us the whole way

Going with a toddler is never easy, but there are so many great moments. I will admit, the first day and a half for me were very...trying but once I kind of let go and relaxed a little things were better than expected. I've always gone to Disneyworld as an adult with friends and you know here on disboards you read about the meltdowns and the bad moments here and there but never really take them in I guess. I learned a few things along the way and overpacked a bunch! lol More to follow in the next day or two, family reunion coming up tomorrow so I may have time for update tomorrow night. Thanks for reading along
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Old 07-25-2014, 11:10 PM   #4
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness
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Location: Tulsa Oklahoma
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Update coming soon! I just spent an hour typing it out and pressed a button on my laptop and the browser went back a page and I lost it So i'm going to try out my dole whip float I made from the Disney Diner site, will promise an update tomorrow
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Old 09-01-2014, 03:35 PM   #5
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness
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Location: Tulsa Oklahoma
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The Struggles Real....

seriously...I am doing a HORRIBLE job updating this TR! I've had this typed out for a while just haven't posted it...so here it goes....

So here it goes….again….

I am going to preface this with saying that I did not keep good notes, note to self:take trip notes next time, so the times may be off I’m just going on memory here.

We got up and got everything down to the car and checked out around 9/930 and I grabbed some breakfast for DD, some fruit loops that went untouched, some milk and juice and DH some hard boiled eggs. We headed out excited and ready to see some WDW billboards! We made a stop at Loves on I-75 for gas and a potty break and we crossed into our mecca, Florida, around 10 that morning. So excited! A few observations, while I-75 is a highway built for speed, it is actually beautiful to me? Call me crazy, maybe it was the palm trees?

Around 2pm we finally saw this sign to welcome us ‘home’

I was a ball of nerves and excited at the same time. You see, I had booked an Anna & Elsa fastpass for the latest I could, 240-340 I think it was. And I needed to slip in the shower quickly. VERY quickly. So off to Animation Hall we went, another potty break then I quickly got in the online checkin line with my documentation. Within no time a cast member was checking to see if our room was ready and getting our packet together. Meanwhile DH and DD were cruising the lobby checking everything out. They were both so amazed and so happy to be here. I didn’t think we would need bed rails but quickly changed my mind after a rolling off the bed incident the night before so I requested 2 bedrails for DD when I gave my info to the cast member. I was afraid that we wouldn’t get them since I hadn’t pre-requested but to my surprise he said no problem, he would put the request in and they would be there within the hour. We had requested a ground floor, closest building to transport if possible, but ground floor with the toddler was more of a must for us. So a few minutes later we trekked back to the car with parking pass and hotel maps and info in hand, magic bands on our wrists to score an amazing parking spot in between the Ariel and Triton buildings. Grabbed some quick things from the car and headed to check out the room, we rounded the corner and found our home for the next 7 days

Magic Band worked like a charm on the door, inside the room was AMAZING, every little detail in place, a mickey towel animal and DD loved it. I immediately turned on Stacy of course, which she also loved while DH lugged in our bags. I grabbed my toiletries and started to shower and DH took DD outside to walk around and check out our surroundings.

By this time I think it was around or alsmost 3 as we headed to Animation Hall towards the bus stop. I was NERVOUS. This is the ONE fastpass we couldn’t miss! I learned a couple things on the bus ride, #1, we do not do crowded busses. I know this sounds a bit pretentious but it just did not work for us, it worked against us. I had the stroller and if I remember right a handful of refillable mugs, full of whatever they were full of, plus a backpack. DH had DD and trying to hold on so he wouldn’t fall. We had a terrible (hate to say that but its true) bus driver who was doing brake checks every little bit and these weren’t your normal oopsie brake checks, this was cars are stopping I need to SLAM on my brakes check. It was hot, stinky, crowded and we were cranky on that bus. DD was falling apart, she wanted down and didn’t understand she couldn’t get down, she was also hot, tired and becoming fussy. DH was hanging on for dear life, both his and DD’s, me, I’m just hanging on at that point but we finally made it and collected ourselves on the pavement lol We blazed through bag check and as much as I would have liked DH to video tape our first entrance to the MK as a family and DD seeing the castle for the first time, we had somewhere to be….in 5 minutes!

I had luckily done my research and knew that Princess Fairytale Hall was somewhere back behind the castle lol I use the term research loosely, anyway we hoofed it through the crowd and just as we were dodging people out side of Tonys we caught our first glimpse of the Steampunk dragon just as he was breathing fire. DH was all AHHH look at that thing! Lol I was like, come on, no time for that right now! DD is just….strolling :D So we make it back to Fairytale Hall and stick the stroller over in the parking area and make our way to the wrong entrance lol Anna & Elsa are at the other entrance, oh well, ok…….So then we run over there and I scan my band and…..GREEN, thank goodness we made it! Phew, I can calm down now, Lesson #3 for the day, do not go to park on arrival day with a toddler, just don’t. We went through a small queue and we weren’t sure how DD would take meeting her favorite princess and Queen from Arrendale, but she was a great sport. We had a dissign that RustMan Fan made that looked like an Anna jersey and I had an Anna bow made from Etsy. As you can see from the pics she was getting sleepy and this was her first intro to characters, she did ok with Anna/Elsa but Aurora was AMAZING. The Anna/Elsa we had were great with the older little girls but with ours Aurora was just better interaction. I wish I would have got some video because there were some cute moments.

After this, we headed towards main street wondering what to do, we headed towards the entrance hub and decided to cancel our other 2 fastpasses for the day and head back to the resort for a swim. MK was very busy that day anyway since it was a Sunday and we were just hot and cranky. This bus ride was much better but another lesson learned, DD must sit on her own when riding the bus, she does NOT want you to hold her. Very independent girl I have here. We suited up and headed to the splashpad for a bit then walked back around hourglass lake to the room to change. We decided to try out Landscape of Flavors for dinner. DH got the Pastrami Burger and me the Surf and Surf Burger. I had been looking forward to the Surf & Surf but I didn’t like it all that much. The crab cake was mostly filler. The Pastrami Burger was delicious though! DH was super impressed and loved it. We grabbed a half gallon of milk for DD and went to the Ink & Paint to look around where I found a beautiful Snow White shirt that I had to have RIGHT THEN! Lol Then we walked around in the Cars section where DD fell asleep and we walked back to our room and transferred her to bed.

(DH pastrami burger on left, my Surf & Surf burger on the right)

DD looks SO young here! She is such a big girl now

part of our daily trek back to our room. I miss the 'squishy' floor by the play area

I will do my best to update this more often! It does help lots when I type it out then all I have to do is add the pics.


Also a mini update:We have decided for our next trip to be in Sep 15. For many reasons, DD will be 3 and over the terrible 2's (hopefully) and she will be a lot more involved and excited about our trip. AND it gives us almost a year to pay it off.
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Old 09-04-2014, 08:19 AM   #6
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Joining in!!!

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Old 09-04-2014, 12:29 PM   #7
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Following along!
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Old 10-26-2014, 01:27 PM   #8
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness
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We are going SOARIN!

Sorry, my updates just stink..

So let me just start this out by saying I learned a few things this day. My plan-no-my unrealistic expectation was that I get up early than DH and DD and stroll to Landscape of Flavors to browse the gift shop and pick up some breakfast for us in the mornings. This did not happen, I was the first to rouse as usual but it was not 'early' by any means. Basically when I woke up, not sure of the time but it was not the 6-7am time I know, I woke up DH asked him to get DD up and start getting her dressed and I would finish her up when I was dressed. I jumped in the shower and dressed and finished up DD. While I was preparing my face DH took DD to walk a bit outside and we were ready to go in about an hour. Not sure of the exact time because I had also planned on taking notes each day which I did not do.

We did have 3 fastpasses this day, Soarin, Test Track and Spaceship Earth. We decided we weren't hungry for breakfast after all and DD was already chomping on some in room snacks/food we had brought so we just decided to fill our mugs and head out. Here comes first lesson of the day: Not so much a lesson more of what I expected...DH HATES the refillable mugs. Not because it is a far walk to the drink station from our room but its the size. He needs a bigger cup. So this didn't really serve a purpose for him. We eventually just started filling both mugs with my beverage of choice and picked up some cans of diet coke for him that we took in our park bag. This worked beautifully!

So luckily we were the second family in line for Epcot, which was great! That tells me I had picked the right park to visit that day. WIN! The bus eventually came and we got right on and folded up nicely. Once we arrived at Epcot we got our bags checked and headed right for ......SOarin! We had booked our FPP for this so I was NOT missing it. DH graciously allowed me to go first since it is my all time favorite ride. By the time I got checked in and everything I was starting to get anxious because this gives DH about 20 minutes until our FPP expires. It was time for my flight, I got first row, pretty much right smack in the middle. As soon as we were lifted up and the music and movie started it really kicked it I was on vacation and I remember smiling to myself. This makes me happy After my quick flight it was DH's turn. He was waiting outside with DD so we traded and he took his own flight. While we were waiting on DH we blew bubbles and played with the ducks.

DH came to meet us and he loved it! It became his favorite ride also. After this we decided to head back in and ride Living with the Land. I did not get any pictures on this ride, DD kept wanting to get up and walk around the boat. So we spent the entire ride trying to keep her sitting and looking at the different plants. After Living with the Land we headed over to Nemo & Friends. We thought that DD would enjoy it, but, the wait was too long once we got there. There was however an ice cream cart and since it was hot we decided on a popsicle and a drink. We got the strawberry one since it would be less messy than the mickey bar.

After that its time for a bathroom break and diaper change. Another lesson learned here. We headed to the restrooms on the backside of Innoventions. I noticed they had a family/handicap restroom that was open and available to use. I realized when there is a family restroom it is a LOT easier to wheel the stroller in there and change DD. A quick change and we were done. Decided to head to club cool and in between that we wandered into the Butterfly Garden.

I have a few more pictures but this is the only one I can seem to find, I guess those are not uploaded anywhere. From there we went to club cool for a cool beverage. Dh tried some different sodas around the world and I pretty much waited with DD. It was sort of a mad house in there, it was hot out and everyone was sweaty and thirsty. We decided to head over to the other side of Epcot and noticed the play area they had set up with Mater for toddlers/kids but it was closed. The CM said during that time of day they have to close it because it gets too hot for the kids to play and they reopen it and close the other play area during the afternoon. Since we were over near I decided it was time to check out the baby care center. DD was getting very hot and sweaty and a little pink so it was time to let her cool off. We took advantage of the baby care center in Epcot and MK and they are great! I just wish there were a couple in each park. That is the only downside, their locations can be out of place. They were playing Frozen in one of the rooms so we rested while DD played with the 7 dwarves and watched Frozen.

Some pictures of the beautiful floating gardens on the walk to the baby center

After restrooms breaks and diaper changes for all and about 30 minutes of play and cooling off we headed into the World Showcase. First stop...Mexico! I'm calling this her first ride since it is the only one I have pictures of,
She did ok, she was a little scared at first then she didn't want to sit still. And just as the boat was practically next to the load/unload dock.....the ride stopped. We were the next boat to enter the load/unload area, actually it was empty. And something had happened to stall the ride, so there we sat, for at least 15 minutes. DD was very antsy to get out as were some of the riders in the back. The CM were asking everyone to stay seated but of course there were riders who had to leave or they would miss their flight.. oh jeez...so here we go, yes we know we are right by the dock to unload and yes you can just get out and walk up there but they are asking everyone to stay seated. They got up and left anyway....the poor Cast Members, the family was not being very nice to them at all. I get that we could have just got up and walked off but the CM's were just waiting for the all clear from their manager which she told them she had to wait until her manager gives the go ahead. So about 2 minutes after the mean family decided to exit the ride....they let us go. After all that we decided to exit Mexico, bye bye.

We walked around WS for a bit, we got to Italy and after a smoke break we decided we would head back to the hotel to rest for a bit. I quickly changed our two FP for Spaceship Earth and Test Track for later in the day. DD had passed out in the stroller but it was just too hot out there for her and we were hot also. It's strange the weather during our trip was not humid but just HOT. So we strolled back towards the front of the park and the busses and waited about an eternity for a bus to take us back to the hotel for a couple hours nap for DD and a little rest for us.

Next up, night at Epcot and HS
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