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California Dreamin'-A 14 Day Odyssey to San Fran,Yosemite & DL! 8/2013 COMPLETE!1/9!!

Discussion in 'DVC Trip Reports' started by podsnel, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. franandaj

    franandaj I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!

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    Wow! So much to comment on. Isn't that drive down the 99 just beautiful? :rotfl2: It's even better on the I5 when you start north of Sacramento! :lmao: Such varied and changing scenery for hours and hours on end. :crazy2: :laughing:

    The saddest part is that all those pictures that you took over the Grapevine from ascending toward Ft. Tejon, Pyramid Lake, and the video of riding up from the Valley floor, I know exactly where those were. I have been over that pass so many times. And I HATE driving it, I always arrange it now to passenge on it.

    I'm glad you picked Santa Clarita over Bakersfield. Even if it is just a place to sleep, that put you all that much closer to Disneyland for the next day. I'm glad that it was an easy ride for you and there were no accidents, sig alerts or closures to mar your drive.

    Yay for the pool at the VGC! I never get to spend much time there when we stay, I usually get down there for a pop into the hot tub and sit on a chair to dry and am out of there. Glad you folks enjoyed most of the day there.

    So was your room on the 3rd or 4th floor? I'm assuming that it was ending in either 04 or 06. I can never remember which ones are the studio and which are the 1 br. I love those rooms. No matter how many times I have watched WoC from the balcony, I still revel in doing that. Even when they are just testing the water fountains at night, it's a lovely view! Great Score!

    Hmmmm....what did you do next? :scratchin
     
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  3. mitchwebb

    mitchwebb DIS Veteran

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    At least you did not grow up a long 99, :rotfl2:. Love this report. I was born in SF grew up in the Valley you drove through on route 99 (Visalia) and went to College in SF. My dad was a 5th grade teacher and our vacation every year was two weeks in Housekeeping at Yosemite. Back then $300 for two weeks ($25 a night) and we thought it was the best vacation you could ever have.

    I have never enjoyed a report more. Can not wait for you next section in one of my happiest places.
     
  4. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    How cool! I didn't know they did that! And yea- Drea is hilarious- loved seeing her again so soon!

    Excellent! And now you have made mine! :goodvibes

    HAHA- I do love my DVC, that's for sure. Still trying to figure out how to convince Pods we need the Poly when it goes on sale....

    Really? I hadn't noticed...:rolleyes:

    Ya know, I hear there's going to be a cruise ship out there...lol...maybe we need to do the AEP, hmmm?

    Exactly! Marriott has an excellent program, too.

    Thanks Jodie!
     
  5. Linda67

    Linda67 Has a Masters in Margaritas

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    Oh my word, the villa is AMAZING!!!
    And that view .... Just breathtaking!!
    I can't wait to hear what you think of the parks (as if I can't guess!)
    Oh and my 'degree' - you did see what it was in right?
    The tag fairy blessed me with that honor following one too many margs in my dining reviews ;-)
     
  6. RGirl

    RGirl Change Is Good

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    Hi again Ellen!

    I am so excited that you have arrived at DLR - one of my most favorite places on earth!!!!

    Your villa looks amazing. I would so love to stay at the GC someday, but I am seriously pushing the budget with the DLH and summer rates (even with the AP discount :scared1:). :laughing:

    GAH!!! I am DYING for you to walk into DL for the first time! :goodvibes
     
  7. rentayenta

    rentayenta <img src=http://photopost.wdwinfo.com/data/500/dm.

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    We've had a similar view and isn't it unreal! Love love love the GCV and so glad you do too.
     
  8. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Those "in & out" burgers look SO good! YUMMMMMMMMY!

    Your villa is absolutely amazing. OMG! I just love it! Denny and I are definitely going. You are making me want a 1 BR, but I just can't justify it. Boo!

    So - you are the travel guru. What do you think is a better plan?

    (a) DL and San diego late Feb 2015. I have enough points left to stay in a studio for 5 nights. So I was think 5 nights in DL and whatever time I have left over in San Diego. I'm pretty sure I am going to buy to Bush Gardens annual pass when we go to BG Williamsburg in late August. I figure I can use it there, Seaworld in October, maybe BG tampa, and Seaworld San Diego. I've never been to Seaworld. Ever!

    (b) Wait until September 2015 and do DL and Yosemite. I didn't want to go to Yosemite in Feb. I thought San Diego would make more sense.

    Any thoughts?

    I really want to go in Feb because I just want to GET there and I need a winter vacation. I could bank my points and go early to mid-March instead, but I just want to GET there. :rotfl2:

    Great updates!
     
  9. pillow

    pillow DIS Veteran

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    Hi there. I know you're asking Ellen, but I wanted to chime in. Our family did something similar to (a) above over spring break a few years ago. We flew into San Diego and spent 4-5 days there, and then drove up to DL for 2-3 nights. We LOVED San Diego! If you can, go to the zoo and/or the Wild Animal Park (we enjoyed the wild animal park better). Fun trip! We stayed in a budget hotel on a highway somewhere (not the greatest), but I would go over to the Sea World area to run in the mornings. I remember thinking that area would be nice to stay in - Mission Bay area I believe. California is one of those places that requires multiple trips to enjoy it all. I want to go back and do San Fran, Yosemite, the coast, wineries, etc . . . - basically spend a month - ha. Good luck planning!

    Jodie
     
  10. Misskitty3

    Misskitty3 DIS Veteran

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    :offtopic:


    I wanted to point out that there is some speculation over on the Disneyland board that because DL will be celebrating its 60th in July, there could be more than the usual amount of refurbs late winter/early spring 2015.


    http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3280301
     
  11. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    Catching up here finally!
    The Mariposa looks beautiful and I am glad you made Timmy stick it out. Yeah, what would one hour really gain you by being on the road...sometimes you just have to be mean mom. :rotfl:

    I am so excited to see your GC pictures. I just feel right at home now. Of course I have only been there once, but I get that familiar feeling now. Which is a good thing!
    I am trying to figure a way to get out there again as well, hoping next year, but we have friends that have mentioned doing something together, so we may do that instead....well not even sure about that either. :rotfl2:
     
  12. eandesmom

    eandesmom I'm with Beast

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    I am doing my best to get caught up today! Man I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO behind

    Love love love your exit from Yosemite. That was a drool worthy room service breakfast! Too much to comment on but wow, I was drooling over that gift shop, I'd have been in trouble big time. And that drive to Glacier. YIKES!

    I do not think you are brutal. I swear. Teen boys can be the biggest hormonal babies at times and well, it gets old. Seriously. Eric does this a bit more than Evan but they've both put us through it and it's like man, get over yourself and quit being a selfish baby.

    Ok that was harsh and intended towards my own boys...not Timmy of course. :rotfl2: but boy, can I relate to this. Dude...sucking the life and joy out of once in a lifetime experience is NOT allowed.

    so there. :rotfl2:

    Sigh. Makes me want a road trip!

    Except for the drive down after. Hot, boring and hot. But the burgers looked good and you had an excellent crash pad!

     
  13. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    I wonder.....something REALLY great, I bet!

    Thank you!! I will do my best to keep entertaining you!:lovestruc

    Yes, of course I saw! I am very impressed! :thumbsup2

    It's coming soon!

    Of course! Have you gotten your add-on yet?
     
  14. DWGal210

    DWGal210 DIS Veteran

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    Girl, if there is an AEP out there SIGN ME UP. :thumbsup2 I have actually been looking also at the Adventures by Disney trip that goes to So Cal - kill two Disney birds with one stone by doing that trip. But we'll see. Next year I am going on a Med Cruise (!!!!!) so that's eating up $$ and vacation time.
     
  15. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    You need to GO! ASAP!!


    So much fun to vacation with friends- where do you think you will go?
     
  16. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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  17. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    After a little more RnR by the pool-

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    We went our seperate ways. The boys were so excited to see a game at a different stadium-

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    You can see they both got shirts- it was an excellent night out!

    I could have gone with them, but instead I was going to hook up with Alison and Fran, and then Jenny and kids, because to be honest it would have absolutely KILLED me to wait one whole day to go into those parks! Alison texted me when she was in the building, and I went down to the lobby to meet my friend. Looks like a CM was down there telling some stories-

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    Lucky me, Alison and Fran had called in a favor from a friend, and tonight we would be hanging in the exclusive 1901 Lounge inside the California Adventure park. Alison led the way to the GCH entrance to it, and quickly we were at Carthay Circle which is where the lounge is located. Rentayenta was there to say hello-

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    with a promise to hook up later in Disneyland where she was busy going commando with her kids. WOW, was it ever awesome to meet thses ladies!! Like seeing old, dear friends except I had never met them before! But that's kind of how it is with DISfriends, isn't it?

    Anyway, Fran was inside 1901 too, I was so happy she decided to come out that night! We were ordering apps to share, along with Gin martinins for Alison and myself- of COURSE!! Who wants to miss thie ice cube show?? It is the coolest thing ever!

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    So, basically this ice cube contraption was created by a Scotch Whisky company in China, to chill whisky without diluting it. She begins with an airless, bubbleless ice cube-

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    The ice block is put into the mold-

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    The warmth of the room has heated the metal cylinder mold just enough to slowly close on the block of ice-

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    Creating a perfect, solid sphere of ice for your glass-

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    Look at how clear and perfect it is!

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    What makes this little ice cube even MORE special is the fact that it is such new technology, it is found no where else in the US yet- well, I don't know, maybe that has changed since last summer, but pretty amazing that someone from Disney saw it and said we need that in our very exclusive club!

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    Beyond our amazing martinis, there was really SO much to see in here.

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    Personal photos and memos adorn every wall-

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    On to some apps! Mini hot dogs in puff pastry-

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    Chilled Watermelon Skewers with Lime Sorbet-

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    Queso Fundido and chips-

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    Cala-Rita Flatbread with Summer tomatoes, Bacon, Basil and Cheddar

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    YUM. This is my favorite way to eat- trying a little bit of everything! We ordered another round, this time some wine- actually, my favorite white wine, Vouvray-

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    I went around and took more photos-

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    And Alison took a couple of pics of me which I promptly posted on Facebook-

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    Cont'd next post-
     
  18. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    [​IMG]

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    This one was like the special magical art on the Disney Fantasy and Dream- Walt was drawing-

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    The note is a memo about belly buttons being obscene and being removed from all animated characters- definitely not from 2013!

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    Walt's private plane (wow! It was really small! lol...)

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    I LOVED the paper on the ceiling- it was perfect!

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    I had the best time with Alison and Fran! Eventually, though, it was time to move on...good bye 1901..

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    So friendly and nice! Next, we had some shopping to do. Well, correction- Fran had some POWER shopping to do.

    You think you know what power shopping is? Unless you have been shopping with Fran, I am pretty sure you do NOT. :rotfl: Up next time!

     
  19. Misskitty3

    Misskitty3 DIS Veteran

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    Pretty pick of all three of you ladies!

    That ice cube thing is really cool.....hahaha!:rotfl2: Seriously, that is so neat and fun that they do it table side!

    That food looks amazing. Especially the watermelon...sounds so refreshing!
     
  20. Captain_Oblivious

    Captain_Oblivious DIS Dad #257

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    My goodness, you've been an updating machine all of a sudden, and there's no way I can pick and choose quotes to comment on. I'll just say that the Grand Californian looks amazing, and that view from your room is fantastic!

    Very cool that you could meet up with Alison and Jenny! The 1901 lounge looked really cool, and I officially want an ice globe maker for my house.
     
  21. jedijill

    jedijill <font color=red>Chiefs fan living in Bronco countr

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    Playing catch up!!!!

    Those trees in Yosemite are awe inspiring!

    Yay! You are at DL! I fell in love with the GCH and I cannot wait to stay there some of these days!

    Awesome Dis meet at 1901! I love that place. :)

    Jill in CO
     

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