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AN AP-ALOOZA with a baby! October TR turned year of Disney! NEW 2/7 AUG FINISHED!

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by Imagineer5, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member


    Welcome everyone to my very first actual TR! I have a PTR going on and just returned from the first of three (maybe more&) trips planned over the next year thanks to some smooth talking and getting APs.

    If you followed me over from my PTR, thank you so much for continuing to follow along if you are new, WELCOME! Here is my PTR link in case youd like to learn more. I started the PTR about a year ago, when I was still pregnant with my baby girl, who was 8 months old on this trip! So much was new to us going to the world with a baby, but we enjoyed all the changes that she brought! Also in my PTR are quite a few Disney prep outings we took in preparation for this trip!

    Despite some negativity from my DH, we had a wonderful vacation, and Aria (our baby girl) truly had a blast as well. Ive never seen her smile, laugh, and be so involved in her surroundings as this trip allowed me to see.

    Without further ado, lets start with some introductions!

    I am the resident Disney addict in the household/extended family/office/basically anywhere we go&somehow Disney gets into about every conversation I have. I have been planning this particular vacation for over a year now, and we were booked at our resorts while I was still in my 2nd trimester of pregnancy, much to my husbands dismay. I knew I wanted to spend my 30th birthday at the world, and I also thought that 8 months old would be the perfect age for a baby to experience Disney.

    I am an engineer at work for the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, but I would love to be a SAHM if I could. I lived all over the country as well as Spain, but still consider myself from Seattle, though we live in Massachusetts now (and I work in Rhode Island).


    Next up is Andrew, my DH of over 5 years. We met in college as we both are mechanical engineers, and had all the same classes together. After I got a masters degree we got married in 2007, enjoyed some traveling together as a couple, and then tried for a baby. Andrew works as a mechanical engineer at MIT, and he was born and raised in Massachusetts.


    Third, but definitely most importantly, is Aria! She is our baby girl, born January 30th! Many of those reading my PTR followed me through from my baby shower, to those last few weeks pregnant, to the birth of Aria and then the fun times that followed. She has really been a joy, and (in my opinion) is such an easy going happy little baby! I have a clothing obsession (baby clothes, that is) and this trip really allowed me to have fun packing 5+ outfits daily for her (and yes, I did overpack!).


    Trip #1 Details October 4 14th, 2012. First three nights were spent at BLT, and last 7 nights we moved offsite to Cypress Pointe Resort in a 3 bedroom condo.

    I have never stayed offsite before, but I got a deal for $350 for the WEEK and couldnt pass it up. We had a rental car, as we always do, and had at least 2 ADRs per day, as I do not cook on vacation! Due to the Tables in Wonderland card, savings on parking, and 10% savings on merchandise at most locations, I figured that it would only cost us approximately $50 more to have annual passes (and actually, we broke about even for this trip!), which is why we are going back for a long weekend in December and for a week next June.

    A note about the title, we got to see ALL of the Fantasyland Expansion on our very last full day, which we spent at the Magic Kingdom! So I hope you will come along with me on my TR journey! Goal is to have it completed by December 7th, when we leave for our next (quickie) vacation but that may or may not happen, we have a lot to get through! I have over 4000 pictures to go through, including Photopass (which I have) and a Disney family photoshoot at the Polynesian which is where our cover photos come from!

    ETA: Forgot to leave a post for chapter links, so I guess they will go here!!

    Day 1 - Flight in, Evening at BLT
    Day 1 Part 1 - Flight & Rental Car Day 1 Part 2

    Day 2 - Magic Kingdom! (with Crystal Palace & California Grill)
    Day 2 Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

    Day 3 - EPCOT (with Kona, Biergarten, and Rose & Crown)
    Day 3 Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

    Day 4 - Animal Kingdom (with Chef Mickeys, Sanaa, and move from BLT to condo)
    Day 4 Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

    Day 5 - Pool morning, MK afternoon, 1st Haircut, 1900 Park Fare, MNSSHP
    Day 5 Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5

    Day 6 - DHS, 50's Prime Time, Cape May
    Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

    Day 7 - Akershus, EPCOT, Chefs de France, Poly Photoshoot, Coral Reef
    Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7

    Day 8 - AK, Y&Y, Flying Fish
    Part 1 PP Pics Part 2

    Day 9 - DTD, Raglan Road, EPCOT, 3D Dessert Discovery Party
    Part 1 -DTD Part 2 -EPCOT Part 3

    Day 10 - OUR BEST DAY EVER! FLE preview, LTT, princess meet, Ohana!

    Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 & End

    TRIP #2 - DECEMBER 7-10, 2012
    BACKGROUND: We stayed at POR for the first time for 3 nights to see some holiday happenings! Quick trip made me want to go back again next December!

    A bit more info

    Day 1 - Flight, EPCOT, San Angel Inn & Garden Grill

    Part 1 - Flight, POR Royal Room & EPCOT Part 2 - EPCOT Cont

    Day 2 - MK, WCC, Be Our Guest
    MK Morning! Lunch & back to MK for BOG

    Day 3 - Tusker House, AK, DHS, MM, EPCOT SANTA, F! and Osborne lights! AND POR Carriage Ride!
    Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 & END

    TRIP #3 - MARCH 10-13, 2013

    BACKGROUND: My mom, Aria, and I had a girl's trip to the AKV during the Flower & Garden Festival! *I* ate well and had a blast! Wouldn't vacation with my mom again though! :rotfl:

    Day 1 - Flight; AKV; DTD; Pool; Jiko
    Part 1 Part 2

    Day 2- MK w/ CRT bfast, then Boma
    Part 1 Part 2

    Day 3 - EPCOT! Le Chefs lunch, La Hacienda dinner
    Part 1 Part 2

    Day 4 - AK, Sanaa, and home

    AK day

    Photopass Recap
    TRIP #4 - MAY 31- JUNE 10, 2013
    BACKGROUND: DH's Family had a little reunion in FL by renting a 6BR house near Disney. We spent the first 7 nights of the trip there, then moved onsite to BCV to spend some quality family time! HAD A BLAST!

    Day 1 - flight and moving into rental house!

    Day 2 - EPCOT Part 1 EPCOT part 2

    Day 3 - relax day, hopped to DHS, then date night.

    Day 4 - MK day! Part 1 Part 2

    Day 5 - KTTK TOUR & Poly Part2

    Day 6 - AK

    Day 7 - A Very Wet DHS An interesting afternoon & an evening to remember

    Day 8 - Part 1 move to BCV attempted, EPCOT Part 2 - BC Pool & Boardwalk

    Day 9 - AK, Sanaa, pool time, rain & Via Napoli

    Day 10 - MK Part Pool & Chef Mickeys

    Day 11 - Kouzzina, EPCOT & Home

    TRIP #5 - AUGUST 2-9, 2013
    BACKGROUND: Spur of the moment "daycare is closed this week" so I am taking Aria by myself! Renting a 1BR condo at Silver Lake (next door to AK!) and excited to spend the week with her. She will be 18m on this trip!


    Day 1 - Friday, August 2nd!

    Flight & Check in & Pool Time! Port Orleans - Boatwrights for dinner & playground!

    Day 2 - Saturday August 3rd

    Wave & MK morning MK continued End of the day

    Day 3 - Sunday August 4th

    DTD Day

    Day 4 - Monday August 5th

    EPCOT Day part 1 EPCOT day part 2 EPCOT continued! end of EPCOT & dinner at Maya Grill

    Day 5 - Tuesday August 6th

    AK morning AK continued MK evening MK wishes dessert party

    Day 6 - Wednesday August 7th

    MK morning & one of our best character meets MK continued End of MK & dinner at GFC

    TRIP #6

    BACKGROUND: 4 nights at VWL! Trying to not plan *too* much and just enjoy the holiday decorations at WDW and enjoy the new-to-us resort!

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  3. HeatherLassell

    HeatherLassell Queen of the PTR


    Yay!!! :rotfl2::dance3::yay::thumbsup2

    Looking forward to reading about your trip!
  4. ariel1025

    ariel1025 Active Member

    Jumping on board! I lurked through your PTR, but never commented as I came across it very late in the game.

    Can't wait to read all about your adventures with the little one, as we are discussing having our second and I am deciding if I would want to take a baby (with a toddler!) on our next trip.

    Aria is beautiful, by the way :goodvibes
  5. dtr_angel

    dtr_angel You're really cute, but I have no idea what you ar

    Yay! Can't wait! Looking forward to all the baby tips!

    Sent from my iPhone using DISBoards
  6. CandleontheWater

    CandleontheWater Forever in love with Hathaway Browne

    Whoo-hoo! First page! The poly pics are lovely! I'm so glad you had a good experience with them and I can't wait to see more, and hear more about your trip!
  7. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

    I'm here! Look at you trying to draw people in with FLE lol. I can't believe we left that Monday and by Thursday it was time for the soft opening. Really Disney? Really?

    Looking forward to reading about your trip!
  8. holleypie

    holleypie Member

    Awwwww. :)

    I can't wait to read all about your trip!
  9. Dugette

    Dugette Active Member

    I'm here and super excited to hear about everything! :cool1: I love Aria's outfit in the Poly pics, by the way!
  10. cbcrockett

    cbcrockett Member

    I'm here! (And yes, I do still exist!) I'm so excited to hear all about y'all's trip! One day, I'll get around to finishing my TR... One day. Hah!

    Sent from my iPad using DISBoards
  11. bellaally

    bellaally Active Member

    Aww those pics are adorable poly I knew it lol. Can't wait to hear all about little aria adventure in a new world lol, hopefully you do finish in time for December.
  12. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member

    Glad you are here!! :goodvibes

    Haha no problem, thanks for coming to the TR!! After this trip, I can see having a TOTAL BLAST once we have a 2nd and bringing little toddler-Aria plus baby!! Totally doable, IMO! (I say that now, before actually experiencing toddler-Aria, LOL, but baby-Aria was fantastic!).

    Aw thanks!

    YAY if I leave anything out feel free to ask any questions you might have!! Some things became second nature but I'll try to give all the details I can think of! :goodvibes

    YAY! Yes we had a great experience! Thanks for coming over, I'm excited to read all about your toddler adventures LOL

    HAHAH I did preface the link in my PTR with that :lmao: YEP I want to share my gazillion pictures with as many people as I can lure in! I'm SO SO sorry you missed it though.

    Heheh thanks, it is so true though. I think moreso since I do work 3 days per week and DH works full time, that it was just so amazing to get to spend 11 days straight with her!

    Let me share a secret - MUD PIE baby clothes - AMAZING!!!!!!!! LOL! I already have an outfit for our December trip on its way, plus a warm Halloween outfit (that she will probably wear this weekend pumpkin-picking!) and a bunch of Christmas outfits. This one is Mud Pue, and a couple other outfits she wore during the trip were too. They retain their value really well too, if you decide to resell (which I have a problem doing, need to do that more so I can fund future clothing purchases haha)

    YAY! SO happy to see you here! If you won't finish your TR, I'm still glad you want to follow mine! HEHE

    Yep, I loved our Poly photoshoot. They will be used for a Christmas card (which we are ordering this week!). Once ordered I will be posting a pic of it.

    I hope I finish too, so I can then work on the December TR! :woohoo:
  13. mandas08

    mandas08 Member

    I'm here and excited to hear all about your trip and of course to see all of Aria's outfits. (Girls clothing is much more exciting than boys:laughing:)
  14. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member

    Day 1 – Thursday October 4th, 2012

    Waking up this morning, I just knew I overpacked. It would have been prudent to spend the couple hours I had in the morning sorting through everything one last time, because I could have easily eliminated a suitcase full of clothes. As it is, I had a bag FULL for each day at the parks for Aria’s clothes, and then for some reason decided I had to have another suitcase full of her clothes as well. Same goes for my summer clothes, I basically packed every summery shirt, shorts, and capris I own. I also thought a suitcase full of toys would be necessary. Let me just state, in December I will easily fit everything into 1 checked bag.

    So instead of being overly productive on the morning of the 4th, I enjoyed clearing out my DVR and watching some of my favorite shows like Fringe which recently started back up again. I only had to pack my toiletries and get everything to the car. We filled the back of an Expedition EL, and I couldn’t even fathom how we would fit it all into a rental car. Andrew went to work from 6-10AM (so worked a half day) and was home a little before 11AM. Of course, Aria was already in her car seat, car was running, and we were excited and ready to get to the airport when Andrew decided he needed to run inside and check on a few (very unnecessary) things. His coworker/good friend Craig was with him (I realized I have a total of ONE photo of him, this is when Aria was a couple days old)

    Craig was taking us to the airport, and also stayed at our house and watched the dogs/cats/chickens/etc.

    When Mr. Slow Poke was finally ready to leave it was just after 11, and we had a little over 2 hours until our flight was due to leave. I sat in the back seat of our car and entertained Aria while we traveled behind the slowest.drivers.ever on our (normally 30 minutes) 45 minute drive to the airport. We made it just in time, somehow managed all our luggage between the two of us and a stroller, and were very happy to drop it off at the Southwest counter. 2 bags were exactly 50 lbs, and thanks to the trusty luggage scale, we didn’t have to move any clothes around!

    Security wasn’t so bad with Aria! They didn’t make us fold the stroller (providence or Orlando – I guess one positive to having gigantor with us!) and we had a small cooler with breastmilk, laptop, ipad, shoes, small baggie of toiletries, and overall it wasn’t bad. They did take the individual bottles of milk out and put them in some sort of contraption to test for explosives, but *phew* it was all clear and we were good to go with still about 30 minutes to spare (gotta love tiny little providence airport!).
    (BTW Dugette, her flying outfit is also Mud Pie…LOL)

    Once at our gate (a 2 minute walk including bathroom stops, ha!) we sat in a nice empty area to let Aria roam around and also to give us space to fold up the stroller and get it in the stroller bag.




    Stroller folding was a breeze, so we spent the last 15 minutes or so just worrying about how she would do for the flight! She was due a nap very soon, but I wanted her to be nursing or napping on take off and landing for her ears, and she was very excited with all the new fun things from the airport.


    I packed a couple toys inside my nursing pillow area (along with the nursing cover) which was really helpful to have them so handy and accessible for the flight.

    Still haven’t taken off yet and I’m worried about how to get her to nap LOL but I had Andrew take some pictures

    (I don’t think I mentioned it, but yes Aria was a lap baby, and it was a non-stop flight from Providence to Orlando which took just under 3 hours).


    Around the point they closed the doors, I decided I would have to nurse Aria to sleep because she really wasn’t interested in napping with all the fun stuff going on. A man near about 40’s sat in our row, and it turns out he has 4 children and works at my office’s sister-base in Florida! Small world!

    Aria only napped for 30 minutes and then was wide awake and happy during the flight. We brought out some stickers which didn’t go over as well as I had hoped because she just wanted to eat them, but she enjoyed playing with/eating her headband instead…

    (outfit change was due to the awesome fact that we (I) totally didn’t carry on a bib, and we fed her a little lunch after she woke up)


    Then she discovered the awesome woman who sat behind me on the flight. She played peek a boo over the seats with Aria, showed her her awesome nails, and Aria was just eating it all up. I was so thankful for her (and did thank her as we disembarked – if ever you find yourself in a situation with a baby nearby and they show interest in you, it will make a parent’s dream come true to play a little bit!!).


    She was also enjoying looking out the window once we got through some clouds


    During landing, I nursed her again since she really hadn’t had much to eat when she fell asleep during take off. That seemed to work out perfectly and we were off the plane in no time. It took a couple minutes waiting for the gate checked stroller, and then we were off!


    First family photo of the trip!! Courtesy of a 18 year old (or so) super rocker guy LOL that offered to take it while on the monorail.

    We got a smartiecart and I waited for the luggage while Andrew checked in for the rental car. First (I don’t *think* we fought up to this point) fight of the trip happened here…Andrew calls and tells me I rented a mid-size car – I though it was full size but looking at the paperwork it was a mid-size car. And we had a TON of luggage. He asked how much an upgrade would be, and he told me they told him $12/day plus taxes. For 11 days, I said it wasn’t worth it and we will stuff the car full. He was miffed but said fine and hung up. I had all our luggage onto the cart within 5 minutes of arriving at baggage claim, and just waited with Aria for Andrew to return. When he finally got back he took the smartiecart and on the way mentioned we *should* have upgraded, as the SUV was only going to be $80 for the entire rental period. WHAT?! That’s not what he told me, he said it would be 12/day plus taxes/fees which would easily be over $150. LOL…so I said he should have just done it for that price…which led into a huge fight while carrying this gigantic load of stuff. I decided to check out the mid-size cars, which BTW the new Sebrings have the BIGGEST TRUNKS EVER. I ran back to where Andrew was standing with all the luggage and said we will fit everything in, easy peasy. And it was. BOO to Andrew – we fit stuff in, granted it was piled on the seats next to Aria hehehe but it all fit.

    Anyway that was a big saga so I am done talking about it. We then got on the highway on the wrong direction, thanks to my iphone which wouldn’t update and Andrew’s inability to read signs while I was trying to load my maps app on my phone. Luckily it just added about 4 minutes to the drive, and we were finally heading in the right direction. No traffic even though it was about 5PM on a Thursday, thank goodness, and we arrived at BLT by about 6PM to very ominous but still exciting skies.




    Continued in next post…
  15. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member

    Hi!! Thanks for coming over!! Her outfits were so much fun, though I will admit we didn't wear any of the matchy matchy stuff I got from etsy...(totally forgot about them!)
  16. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member

    Day 1 continued&

    So we arrived at BLT and there was no bellman in sight, so I ran inside to get in line to check in. There is only 1 check in desk and 3 groups ahead of me, including a group of about 30 women on a business trip. Awesome. Andrew spent this time outside unloading the car, while I had Aria inside with me in her stroller. The poor thing was exhausted and hungry as she had napped on the car ride over. Finally we got checked in, had the 12th floor but no MK view  I asked but there was nothing else available. I thought the guy I rented points from had put in that request (North side) but we were on the opposite side of BLT.

    I had been inside for 25 minutes, all the while Andrew was sitting outside waiting for someone to help with luggage. I even told the check in guy we needed a bellhop, and still none came. Andrew was in a mood (rightfully so, though I didnt let it upset me like he did), so we decided to just manage everything by ourselves and got up to our room in one piece.

    Waiting curbside after check in, still no bellman in sight&

    I was a semi-good DISer. Took pictures of the room before we unpacked, but not before it was stuffed FULL of our luggage.

    Bathroom was beautiful, clean, and plenty of storage for the couple days we were there.

    I was glad I brought a blow up spout cover for the tub spout as this one (no picture) juts out pretty far and pretty sharp into the tub. (Bought at walmart for about $2)

    Everything Ive read about the BLT Condos being TINY is so so true, especially with 8 pieces of luggage to find a home for. (and gigantor stroller and pack n play)



    I used the drawers for my clothes (a few days worth) and Arias clothes, and Andrew put all of his clothes into one big suitcase near the sliding glass doors. We put up the pack n play at the doorway to the next room over which worked out perfectly. We gave Aria a quick bath to rid her of airplane grime, I nursed her, and put her to sleep in the stroller! I was dying to get up to the Top of the World lounge&since ta-da! Both Andrews and Arias room keys said DVC Member  mine didnt! LOL! But no matter, we were in! Aria fell right to sleep in the stroller, and we enjoyed a very relaxing evening up there! I had hoped to watch HalloWishes up there, but it was absolutely downpouring outside so I think the fireworks were cancelled. No matter, we *loved* it up there. Such a relaxing atmosphere (especially with no fireworks, as wed find out the next evening!).



    We were both starving, but we started off with some cocktails, both were only on the TotW menu which I didnt take pictures of. Mine was a fruity martini of some sort, and Andrews was a long island iced tea concoction. Both were absolutely delicious and we ended up with seconds. The menu was also different from what allears is reporting, and was actually a little disappointing. It didnt help we were both hungry to have a full size dinner.


    This was (from what I remember) a vegetarian flatbread nachos with goat cheese. Very good, but small!

    This was a braised beef flat bread, again with goat cheese


    We thought two flatbreads would fill us up (thinking back on the Cali Grille flatbread sizes, and the Mara flatbreads) but these were about ½ their size and we were still hungry, so we decided to order the pretzel bites:
    Soft Pretzels and Dip - spicy-sweet cream cheese and mustard dipping sauce $7.99

    Luckily I liked the spicy sweet sauce and Andrew liked the mustard sauce, so we were both very happy with this order! And with that we were satiated, and went back to the room at about 9PM  we had an early morning the next day! (And I didnt know how the transfer to the pack n play from the stroller would go for Aria, but that went fine and she slept all night!)

    Next up, my 30th birthday! We are officially AP holders!

    ETA: In my PTR I did day by day plans, including the items we would most likely order at the various restaurants we had ADR's for. At the end of each my day's recaps, I want to go over the original plans and how they deviated, as well as what I had planned to order!

    So, for today we had hoped to be at BLT by 6, which we were. We were not able to use Dollar kiosks, due to the prepaid booking. Did not get a MK view at BLT, but no big deal. Did get to go to TotW lounge, but no swimming this evening. I assumed we'd get: Chicken Sliders - trio of burgers with herbed goat cheese, local tomato jam, and jalapeno ketchup $10.99 along with 7 Layer Cake for 2 with salted caramel sauce $10.99. No chicken sliders on the menu, and we decided not to get the 7 layer cake.

  17. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

    I think you got in to Orlando on the day we went to Epcot for dinner & had water up to our ankles. The skies just opened up and wouldn't stop that night!

    First picture - fake monorail. Check. LOL

    Sorry you didn't get a MK view. Bummer. :( How small is tiny? I'd love to stay at BLT because it's so close to everything but not if it feels like we're on top of each other!
  18. Imagineer5

    Imagineer5 Active Member

    OH NO!! Haha it's going to be so fun to read about what others were up to on the days we were there. Sorry you were out in EPCOT, yes the rain was SO crazy. Getting to the Top of the World we actually got really wet, despite it being covered overhead and on one side! Rain was crazy. Good thing that wasn't your MNSSHP night!

    LOL! Yep fake monorail! Hahaha

    Due to the kitchenette area (which IMO is totally useless space) the actual bedroom/main area FEELS like it's 10 feet or so shorter than, say, a CBR room. I haven't actually looked into dimensions but it just felt small. Granted: we had a pack n play at the entrance, a huge stroller that really didn't fit anywhere except by the couches (we didn't fold it since I was able to pack it for the next morning and stroll right from the room vs. unpacking everything underneath), and 8 or so pieces of luggage that we didn't want to fully unpack since we moved after 3 days. Without Aria, the room would have been fine, and even with her for a weekend with 1 piece of luggage, it would be totally doable. But it did make me think of renting enough points for a 1-bedroom next time, no matter where we stay! And I think it has the smallest couch I've ever seen considered a couch before. :goodvibes
  19. FauntleroyFAN07

    FauntleroyFAN07 Commander of Donalds Crew Oh Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy

    im here, thanks for the message you started...i read along your PreTR, but was also late to the game there so didnt comment.

    yeah DTD was fun in your arrival rain, going from one side to the other...actually was a comical "run" through DTD.

    i guess you are paying for the location and not hte size of the rooms there huh?

    does seem a little small but maybe the pictures make it seem smaller.
  20. Leger13

    Leger13 DIS Veteran

    I'm here! Great start!! Love all the pictures. Bummer about the rental car debacle. That's never easy to get through. Every time I've ever rented a car it's been a nightmare. I'm glad that the flight went so well. It's nice when you have people around you that like babies. :thumbsup2
  21. khertz

    khertz Proud member of the WHO DAT NATION!!

    Popping in to say I'm subscribed, but I don't think I will have time to get caught up today. We are leaving our house at 8:30 tomorrow morning for the airport and I still have not packed a thing!! :scared1: But I'll get all caught up when we get home.

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