13 glorious days at Christmas - Kidani & Jambo Club Level

Discussion in 'DVC Trip Reports' started by momof2disprincesses, Jan 4, 2013.

  1. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    So after the lovely sunrise safari and breakfast had ended, we were on our own as regular park guests and hadn't been to AK yet on this trip, so we wandered off for some fun adventures.

    First we stopped to do a little shopping. The girls decided to let their inner children out and played puppets.

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    Then something went wrong - the puppets started to go a little "wild"

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    They even attached DH (although he seems to be enjoying it ;))

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    More shopping fun!

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    Then we did something we haven't done in years. We took the train out to Rafiki's Planet Watch and wandered around there, including the petting zoo.

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    Then the girls decided they wanted to ride Everest & Dinosaur. DH and I were in the mood to try something different so we walked the Pangani trail and saw the gorillas. This was very enjoyable! We usually are at WDW in the summer and heat, so walking when it was nice & cool (actually cold) was pleasant.

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    Don't you love his "blankey"?

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    After that, we wanted to go catch the Festival of the Lion King, so DH and I walked down that way and the crowds were heavy. About half way down the path that leads to the show, the line was already formed. We got in and then a CM was walking down saying this line was now for the show an hour later because the current show was full. We love the FOTLK show, but were not willing to wait that long for it. So we called the girls and they too were experiencing huge crowds, so we decided to head back to our oasis at AKV.

    We stopped in the lounge for some treats and then hit our room for a little nap.

    Up Next, we head back to AK for Mickey's Jingle Jungle Parade
     
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  3. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    So we headed back to AKV for a little nap and some snacks.

    It was rare to see many animals in our little savanna area outside our balcony, but today there were zebras and I even saw a hint of a giraffe amongst the trees.

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    More of the view from our balcony

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    So back to Animal Kingdom we went. We had never seen the Christmas parade at AK before and wanted to try it.

    We started out by going right in the park when you first enter. We were a little later arriving than we had wanted to be, so there really wasn't a lot of good spots for parade viewing left. So we just kept going and going. Finally, we go left by the bird show and saw a little area across the water from the tree of life that has tables & chairs.

    Can you believe there were 4 open chairs in that area still?! Others had used the chairs and lined up along the parade route, so we just set up chairs right behind them and had a wonderful spot to view the parade and got to sit the entire time. LOVED THIS!!! :love:

    Soon, the parade began. You can kind of see how people lined up the chairs in this photo.

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    This particular parade had lots of "regular" guests included. I thought that was neat. Some day, I would LOVE for that to happen to our family!

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    You would think this was my first Disney parade by the amount of photos I took! The rest will come in the next post.
     
  4. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    So the parade continued on. I'm not usually a big parade fan, only because I hate the way you have to sit on the ground or stand and wait and sometimes fight with other guests about your spot, but this one was a wonderful experience. Here's the rest of the parade photos.

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    I <3 Minnie. She's my favorite!! :love:

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    Is she looking right at me!?

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    I have to wonder how many people's photos these random guests who get chosen to be in the parades wind up in.

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    The BIG CHEESE is the best ending ever!

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    Then, we put our chairs back (as did all the other "good" guests in that area and as we had promised a CM who told us to before the parade). We decided to just chill out and wait for the crowds to die down a little before leaving.

    So we took a few photos with the tree of life as our background.

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    We left AK and had our last evening ahead of us. DD20 was leaving for India the next morning, so we decided to let her pick where to eat dinner and what to do the last night.

    Up next, her pick of how to spend her last evening in America for awhile.
     
  5. Disbug

    Disbug DIS Veteran

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    Jodi! :wave2:
    Thanks for the pictures and bringing back good times. Our family was in the 1 Bedroom (6108) right next to yours from Dec 12-20. You are right! Awesome location! Best time to see the animals was always early-ish in the morning and late afternoon. They put snacks out for the animals to draw them for the Wanyama Safari. It looks like the lounge snacks were the same for you as for us. All of them delicious!
    Looking forward to your next installment! :woohoo:
     
  6. tinkermama117

    tinkermama117 Mouseketeer

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    I am so happy to have found your TR. It brought back great memories of our family's trip to DW during the holidays! We DVC members also and are going to be staying at AKL for the first time this summer.:cool1: Currently we are wait listed for CL and are praying we can make it happen!! Thanks for all the great info and the pics of your lovely family.

    I also wanted to add that I see in your signature that you are booked on the Fantasy for June 2014. We are on the June 28th sailing.

    Looking forward to your next update!
     
  7. TeresaNJ

    TeresaNJ <img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/images/sponsors/s

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    Really enjoyed your report! You have a lovely family! I'm staying at Kidani for the first time in May, and was wondering if it's a pain to get to the pool, having to cross over through the parking lot. Did you find it to be so? I like going to the hot tub in the evening after a long day in the parks, and I may be alone on this upcoming trip, so am a little concerned. Thanks!
     
  8. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    I'm wishing you pixie dust that your CL wait list comes through! :wizard:

    We are on the June 14th Fantasy for 2014.
     
  9. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    We've stayed at Kidani multiple times. It is my favorite of all the resorts.

    I don't think its a pain to get to the pool via the parking lot. Actually most of the rooms we've been assigned to overlooked the pool (because we usually book standard view) so often, its just a quite elevator ride down and then a few steps to the pool entrance. In our experiences, there are usually quite a few people around, so it seems pretty safe.
     
  10. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    It has been really fun to re-live our trip with all of you. A HUGE thanks to everyone for following along and for your kind comments!! :goodvibes

    Sunday, Dec. 30 was our last full day at Disney. We had so much fun on the safari and then at Animal Kingdom.

    In the evening, we did one last Target run. Since DD20 was leaving the next morning from MCO to travel to India for her 4 month study abroad trip, we went to Target I think 5 times during this 13 day trip. We all just kept thinking of "one more thing" she needed.

    By the way, for those staying at Kidani or AKV, getting to Target was super easy and it is FAR less crowded and congested than Wal-Mart. You literally take a right out of AKV to Sherberth Rd. and then another right on Irlo Bronson Memorial highway (which has tons of restaurants and shops). Go down a ways and there is a Super Target on the left. My DD20 loves Target.

    So after our last Target run, we told DD20 to pick anywhere she'd like to have her last meal in America for a few months.

    She picked....Wolfgang Puck Express at DTD! That has always been a favorite of everyone in our family. It was a delicious, although bittersweet meal. Knowing it was our last meal with DD20 for a LONG time made me sad.

    Here is what we had for dinner:

    Pecan bread to share. This was really good!

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    DD20's last meal in America - chicken pesto in a pita

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    Chicken strips & fries

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    Frozen yogurt with brownie & cookie pieces!

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    We went back, enjoyed our last night in our wonderful club level room and went to bed early.

    DD20 had to be at the airport by 9am, so we were up early, enjoyed a quick breakfast in the lounge (so technically, that was her last meal in America) and we all left to take DD20 to MCO.

    It was real tough saying good-bye to her! I cannot lie, there were plenty of tears. We literally watched her weave through the long lines at security while we cried and she cried until she was out of sight.

    She is our world traveler though and loves adventure! Without parents along, in her short 20 years, she has traveled to Costa Rica & Spain (both school trips), spent the summer in Malawi, Africa (with Teen Missions) and now is living in Chennai, India for 4 months through her school's study abroad program. So we are used to her being gone, but this one is the longest time away, so it was extra hard.

    However, she has been in India now for a little over 5 weeks and is LOVING it! She has made amazing friends, seen true poverty and opulent wealth, is doing an internship at a school for special needs kids and is trying new foods, new methods of transportation and really getting to immerse herself in a new culture.

    We actually "talk" more now than when she was in college 1 state away. She is so good about skyping, emailing and chatting on facebook.

    After we saw DD20 off at the airport, the 3 of us headed back to Jambo House and loaded up our van and headed off for our 24 hour drive home.

    The drive home was much easier than the drive down and DD16 even took a turn driving in fog, in the middle of the night for about 3 hours through Illinois! It was very good driving experience for her!

    We were somewhere in Kentucky when the clock struck midnight and we saw some distant fireworks and said "Happy New Year" to each other.

    We arrived home safe & sound in WI about noon on New Year's Day.

    Once again, thank you all so much for following along! May all your Disney trips be as magical as this one was for our family!!! :goodvibes
     
  11. Wicket's Mom

    Wicket's Mom DIS Veteran

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    I had an enjoyable time reading about your trip. How is your daughter doing so far in India? I would be worried sick with her being so far away.
     
  12. budafam

    budafam DIS Veteran

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    I just read it all and LOVED it! I'm from Manitowoc, WI which is only about 45 minutes away :) My MIL is a postal carrier in Appleton! If you ever need one more person for a trip, let me know! lol... I am going for my 5th trip in December and we'll be at Kidani in a 1 bedroom savannah view for the first time ever... I can't wait! Your pictures really helped me see what the rooms look like (and oh, how I wish we had upgraded to CL!) Maybe next time...
     
  13. tksbaskets

    tksbaskets DIS Veteran

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    Hi,
    I'm really late to the party but really enjoyed the heck out of your trip report! The pictures of your family at WDW were just wonderful. I have older kids too and we will keep taking them to Disney as long as they will go with us!

    My favorite picture is the one of you in front of the Muppet fountain. Priceless~

    Thanks for sharing. We want to stay at AKL next time we go to WDW.

    TK
     
  14. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    Thank you following my report!

    DD20 is doing GREAT in India! I, on the other hand, am counting down the time until she comes home (11 weeks from today). :)
     
  15. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    :wave2: Hi neighbor!!!

    You will love Kidani. It truly is my favorite of all Disney resorts and a savanna view room is something so unique to AKV and SO amazing!!!

    Thanks for reading my report.
     
  16. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    Thanks so much for following along.

    I agree with you 100%. DH and I keep saying we'll keep taking our kids to Disney as long as they can come. DD20 doesn't always come anymore, but when she does, she is like a kid again and has so much fun. My favorite Disney trips are when all 4 of us can be there together, so this one really was priceless!
     
  17. LattNJ

    LattNJ Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for your trip report, I really enjoyed it. I am a fellow AKV owner! :)
     
  18. momof2disprincesses

    momof2disprincesses I love my INCREDIBLE family!!!

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    Thanks so much for reading my report!

    Isn't AKV the best? We bought at AKV while on a cruise in 2008 and had never been there before. We are so thrilled with what a great place we got as our home resort!
     
  19. Rizzo1

    Rizzo1 Mouseketeer

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    I as well thank you for the wonderful report and pictures! You have a beautiful and happy family. By this writing, your daughter should be home from India and I'm sure planning her next visit abroad.

    I was on the fence about staying at the CL: it is definitely more points, will we be able to take advantage of all (or most of) its offerings, a room is a room is a room, the views, etc. My DH was of no help, he would just say "...whatever you wanna' do, is fine with me". :headache: By reading about your experiences, it allowed me to make a more informed decision. We will be staying at CL for 6 nights after our cruise. :thumbsup2

    We are looking forward to next spring, when we visit WDW again. We are also cruising next June, but on the Dream.
     

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