Eating and Napping Our Way Through The World *11/10 -The Final Chapter* -COMPLETED!-

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by disneydreaminA115, May 30, 2012.

  1. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Introduction


    Hello, Hello! And welcome to my very first TR! My name is Ashley, and as far as the Disboards are concerned I'm a relative newbie to posting.
    I am a Disney freak - always have been, always will be.
    I am also a born again Christian, wife to an awesome guy, mom to beautiful twincesses, and an aspiring writer.
    My "post count" is small, but I've been a lurker since my 6 months of bedrest two years ago, when I gorged myself on Dining reviews :)

    This is the story of my very first every trip to Disney World, as well as my husbands, and our twin daughters.
    My mother, who joined us to help with the littles, had been once before, but it was a long time ago.
    For all intents and purposes, this was our first real trip!

    As I'd mentioned, I'd been stalking on the Disboards for months, so when it came time to book my first trip, everything was planned to a T.
    We were headed out from Sunday November 27th and staying for 5 nights in POFQ and using the DxDP.
    However, about a month before we were supposed to leave, my husband found out that his work schedule had changed, and it actually gave us an extra day off during our vacation.
    So what'd we do? Added it to our vacation of course! :banana: Unfortunately POFQ was booked solid at that point, so we decided to stay in POP for the first two nights and then head over to POFQ.



    The Cast

    As I mentioned before, I'm Ashley! This is me and DH on the monorail during our date night in Disney :)

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    And this is the rest of our crew - On the left is my DH again with our daughter LoveBug, and on the right is Nana (my mom) with LooBerry, they were 14 months at the time of this trip.

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    As a whole this trip was less than what I had hoped for and expected. This was no fault of Disney's, but more that our children decided precisely when we arrived in Florida that they wanted almost nothing to do with their stroller. This wasn't helped by the fact that we all shared a room, and because Nana wakes up so ungodly early, it would frequently wake up the babies way before their usual wake up time, thus resulting in irritable babies.

    In fact, it was for that reason I didn't immediately write a trip report.
    However, some time has passed, as has some of the frustration, and I find myself looking back fondly over our vacation photos.
    And decided it was high time to write this report!
    So, without wasting anymore time, here we go!
     
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  3. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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  4. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 1: Sunshine and Takeoffs


    I checked my phone for about the hundredth time in half an hour, impatiently waiting for the six a.m. alarm to go off. Just five more minutes now! Beside me DH was snoring, how he managed to sleep so soundly when we were about to leave for Disney (!!!) was beyond me. The excitement was running through me like an electrical current, I was wiggling my toes in impatient anticipation. *BEEP, BEEP, BEEP* - Finally!

    I jumped out of bed and quickly brushed through my hair and brushed my teeth, then packed up the rest of my toiletries into my carry-on bag. I quietly crept into the nursery and rubbed LooBerry's back, then LoveBugs, and then left the room to give them some time to wake up.

    DH got no such gentle treatment :rotfl2: "Wake up, Wake up, WAKE UP! The alarm has been going off for over 3 minutes now! UP UP UP!" He groaned and rolled over, leaving me no choice but to rip the covers mercilessly away. A few seconds later he was up :thumbsup2

    I quickly changed and dressed the babies and stuck them snugly in their car seats. The house still smelled like roasted turkey and outside the weather was brisk, but not the usual bone chilling cold upstate New York usually experiences in November. To the east the sun was just making it ascent into the sky, and my horizon was painted with pinks and oranges - it was going to be an awesome day!

    We tucked the babies into the car and finished loading our baggage. I gave my kitty (Lilo) a squish and told her we'd see her in a few days (our brother in law would be house sitting to keep her company, although I think she'd have been just fine with having the house to herself. :rolleyes:) And then we were off!

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    Super excited about being photographed at 7am! ;)



    Our first stop was to pick up Nana! She was ready to go as soon as we pulled in, as was my aunt who would be driving us to the airport.

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    On our way!! :goodvibes



    The drive to the airport was quick and painless, the babies relatively well behaved, it was a good start!

    Once we arrived we got through security much quicker than we intended, so we decided to get some horrible airport food for breakfast (sorry, didn't manage to get a picture of the McDonalds sandwiches, I know, you're disappointed - I'll do better next time! :p).


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    Soon it was time to board and we left the chilly town of Buffalo behind us!

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    LooBerry loungin' :)

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    The famous blue chips :)



    We were off! destined for warmer winds! But first, we had one more stop to make.



    Continued in next post
     
  5. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 2: The Longest Layover


    Landing in New York City a short time later I quickly realized our (my) first mistake. It was 12:30, aka: Nap time. When I had initially booked our flight my goal was to find the cheapest fare possible. Unfortunately this included a three hour layover. At the time I figured it was no big deal, the babies would nap in their stroller, undisturbed, in a quiet corner somewhere.

    Wrong. So, so wrong. I learned something that day - when you have the option of a direct flight with toddlers, take it. ALWAYS take it. Even if it means an extra thousand dollars, TAKE. IT.

    This was the day my children, my sweet, well scheduled children, began their stroller rebellion. After we got off the plane, we let the girls run around and gave them some lunch. After about half an hour, serious eye rubbing commenced, and we agreed it was nap time -well, most of us agreed. After thirty minutes of crying and fighting sleep (and satisfactorily annoying every other person within a twenty foot radius) Nana offered to take them on a spin around the airport in hopes it would soothe them to sleep. While she did, DH and I partook in an incredibly over-priced, but much needed, cocktail from the bar. When she got back she parked the stroller, and for a moment all was right again.

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    Baby toes peeking out from under the stroller

    But it wasn't to last. Not 15 minutes went by before they were awake and crying again, and this time - while it subdued them - no amount of stroller pushing would lull them back to sleep. We did what we could to keep them distracted and counted the seconds until we boarded the next plane.

    Finally they called our flight number and we checked our stroller, gave the flight attendants a knowingly sympathetic smile and took our seats. We knew that a 15 minute nap meant this was going to be a very, very long flight.

    And it was.

    The three of us spent the entire time passing the girls back and forth, constantly offering sippy cups and snacks, toys, books, movies, iphones - you name it. Anything we could do to keep them entertained. There were moments of inconsolable crying, but we managed to keep them to a minimum. If you happened to be on the plane, I am truly sorry.

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    Finally at 7:30 we heard the words we had been praying to hear:

    "Ladies and Gentlemen, we're preparing for landing"


    Continued in next post
     
  6. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 3: The Last Leg



    We got off the plane and breathed a sigh of relief. We were in Florida!! Just a short bus ride away from Disney!! Our excitement was renewed, even though we were going on the 13th hour of the day.

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    Happy faces all around to be off the plane!

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    Hello, beautiful tree!

    I loved the way this airport smelled. Maybe it's just because I knew we were *so* close to The World!

    We made our way through and soon enough found THIS
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    WHOOP!

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    Checking in was quick, and soon we were directed out into the warm air, where this little beauty was awaiting us.

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    We climbed aboard and my excitement was obvious. My traveling companions were less enthusiastic. At this point it was close to 8:30, the babies were exhausted (and way past bed time), so the bus ride was not ideal. We were hot and flustered by the time we pulled onto Disney property, but as luck would have it POP was the first stop! We quickly slid out of the bus and I rushed into the lobby to check in.

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    I thought it was absolutely beautiful, all decorated for Christmas. I badly wanted to stop and take it all in, alas I knew we had needs to tend to, so I made triple sure with the CM that there would be pack and plays in our room like we requested, and she assured me they had been delivered - so after an incredibly fast check in, we were off to find our room.

    The POP resort was much larger than I thought it would be, and I found the grounds to be incredibly relaxing at night, but we found our building just as the babies went from cranky to full blown melt down.

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    We took the elevator up to our room to find - no pack and plays. :sad2: I called down, probably a little more rudely than I meant to, but it was hard with toddlers screaming in your ear to maintain full composure. We let the girls play in the room for a few moments as best we could, but it was incredibly tight with all 5 of us, plus a stroller. 10 minutes later there was a knock on the door, and two pack and plays had finally arrived. We set them up in no time, and got the girls in bed.

    Once asleep, Nana and DH went down to the food court to get mugs and dinner, while I quietly sat outside on my laptop updating my friends and family on the days events. Just as I sat down I heard fireworks and music, and all of the days stresses just melted away. A few moments later my party returned with an incredibly unremarkable pizza that was devoured in seconds. Not long after we turned in and were falling asleep to the finale of the fireworks show.


    Continued in next post
     
  7. PrincessEeyore

    PrincessEeyore "All it takes is faith and trust and a little bit

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    Ashely, first things first - I absolutely love your writing style! Although it's only been 1 day and just a few updates, I can already tell this TR (despite the trip's difficulties) is going to be so great! :goodvibes

    I'm sorry to hear that the trip wasn't everything you were hoping it to be but I noticed your counter at the bottom of your signature and am so excited that you're headed back in just a few short months! But your girls are so adorable and I'm sure that this trip with your whole family was so incredibly special and really was a great start to your many upcoming Disney vacations!



    I love how much you appreciate the little things, like the sunrise that morning and the evening's fireworks - these little comments really make your TR so enjoyable to read and have me so excited to read more. I can't wait for the next update! :woohoo:
     
  8. Goldeelox9

    Goldeelox9 Our Disney Cruise Line Wedding ~ November 4, 2008

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    Oh a Twins Trip Report! I am in!!!
     
  9. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Thanks so much for the feedback, I'm glad you're enjoying it! So far the chapters have been relatively short, they'll be more in-depth as we get into the actual vacation.

    Yes, We're so excited to go alone and really discover the parks!

    Thanks for reading along! :goodvibes
    Welcome! There will be LOTS of twins! ;)
     
  10. mommytominnie

    mommytominnie Mouseketeer

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    Loving your TR!! Can't wait to read more :-)
     
  11. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 4: Bright Beginnings



    I was awoken the next morning before even the sun; Nana for some reason had found it impossible to sleep past 5am, even on vacation. She tried to dress as quietly as she could and then slipped out to walk the grounds and get some coffee. Unfortunately for us, no matter how softly she tried to tip toe, it wasn't quite quiet enough, and the babies began to stir.

    Fortunately we were able to squeeze out another hour and a half of not so solid sleep, but it was better than being up at 5:30!

    We sleepily got up and dressed and headed out to grab some breakfast from the food court.

    The babies quickly wolfed down some scrambled eggs and pancakes from Nana's platter, and DH and I both got a croissant sandwich with potatoes. I had forgotten to charge my camera, so no pics of this, but believe me when I say it was just basic cafeteria style food. It wasn't terrible, it wasn't great, it just was.

    After we finished eating and filling our mugs, we went back to the room and changed into swim suits. It was an absolutely gorgeous day! Low 80's, slight breeze, not a cloud in the sapphire sky. Because we had added the two days to the beginning of our stay, we decided not to add park tickets, thinking it would be best to just use the two days to get settled and relaxed. This turned out to be a really good decision, and I think we'd probably do the same thing next time we went.

    After about two hours of swimming we all went back to the room for a quick nap. We woke up somewhere around 1pm absolutely famished, and really not enticed by the idea of eating at Everything Pop again; which was JUST fine with me, because I was dying to head to Downtown Disney!


    Continued in next post
     
  12. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 5: Our First Taste of Disney


    We got changed and were on our way!

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    After a quick bus ride, we were there! Food was the first order of business, and I left it up to my companions - Earl of Sandwich or WPE -- Earl of Sandwich it was! (I may or may not have "gently nudged" them in that direction, But I plead the 5th ;) )

    The line was actually intense, we must have waited for 20 minutes before we ordered, but I had had my eye on something ever since I first saw it on the Disboards, and I'd be darned if I wasn't going to get it!

    We placed our orders and headed out into the patio area with our buzzer where we found Nana and babies holding down a table. Soon enough our food was ready.

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    Nana couldn't figure out what she wanted, so she went inside and ordered after we got back - but we couldn't wait to eat, we were starving!

    My sandwich!
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    The Holiday! Can I just tell you how much I loved this? Turkey, Mashed potatoes, Cranberry sauce, all on freshly baked bread? Oh my. Moses supposes his toses are roses!! I shared a bite with Nana and it's what she ended up ordering for herself, and my husband - while he enjoyed his sandwich - lamented at the superiority of my sandwich in comparison. What can I say? I do my research! :thumbsup2

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    DH's sandwich - The Full Montagu, Roast Beef, Turkey, Swiss and Cheddar, Lettuce, Tomatoes, and a mustard sauce. He said it was good, but I just took his word for it.

    We scarfed them down, not quite filled up, but I assured everyone they were going to want to save room for later!

    We walked around taking in all the sights of DD, and I absolutely fell in love. If I could spend every weekend there, I would be the happiest woman alive. Nothing caught my eye as quickly as this, though!

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    Not only am I a Disney fanatic, but I am obsessed with Christmas. It's the best time of the year, and as soon as the leaves start to change I break out my Santa Baby music and hitch up some reindeer to the top of my roof. Forget Halloween, I skip right to the good stuff ;)

    I think my DH had a slight aneurysm when he realized what I was so excited about - but fortunately (for him) we made it out with just three Christmas ornaments. *Pat on the back for self-control*

    We moseyed in and out of a few more shops before I noticed the air was cooling and the sun was climbing slightly down. I checked my watch and realized it was close to 6 o'clock, which meant it was time to start wrapping things up here.

    But not quite yet - we had one place I'd had on my to-do list for months

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    Goofy's!!

    Somehow my sweet-toothed DH passed on the treats :confused3 (I think it may have been the sticker shock) - but boy oh boy, I sure didn't!

    My creation!
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    A Mickey Krispy treat coated in peanut butter chips and drizzled with milk chocolate. Holy. Moses.

    This thing was huge!

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    I'm not ashamed to admit that I worked on it the ENTIRE trip. It was so big and so incredibly sweet - my DH helped me with it at the end, and it's a good thing, because I don't think I'd have been able to finish it alone!

    We took a quick photo for Nana with the girls

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    Then headed back to Pop! We needed to get the girls in bed while Nana grabbed some dinner, because that night I had a surprise planned for DH. We had a date of *royal* proportions to get ready for!


    Continued in next post
     
  13. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Thanks so much for reading along! :goodvibes
     
  14. CatNipRules

    CatNipRules <font color=royalblue>Overplanner Extraordinaire..

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    I'm loving this so far. I'm looking forward to reading about your date!
     
  15. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 6: A Date of Royal Proportions, Part I


    Once back to the hotel room, Nana left us to tuck our kiddos in bed and went down to Everything Pop to grab some dinner. We bathed them, far too quickly in their opinion, and changed them into their pajamas. Books were read, lullabies were sung, and soon we left tucked them snugly into their pack n plays.

    I straightened my hair and my dressed, and my husband donned his (incredibly awesome) black sports jacket. Nana soon returned with her burger and fries, we kissed her goodbye and headed out for our date.

    We grabbed a bus from Pop to the Magic Kingdom. It was the first time I had ever seen it in person, and I was simply captivated by the beauty of the castle and ferries and the lights from the resorts. *Content sigh* :cloud9:

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    We walked up the pathway to the monorail and waited, almost completely alone. Before our trip we did a lot of research to find of the time frame closest to the Holidays with the least amount of people. To my amazement, I read that the Monday after Thanksgiving all the way to about the week right before Christmas was considered the slowest time to visit the world! We found that to be pretty spot on, as far as we could tell! :thumbsup2 We like to spend the holidays themselves with our extended families, so it worked out perfectly for us.

    In a few seconds our chariot arrived!
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    Riding the monorail would become one of my absolute favorite things to do in the park, I loved the view!

    A short time later, we arrived...
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    At the Grand Floridian!

    We walked through the doors and I caught my breath. It was just stunning!

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    They completely embraced the term "Deck the halls"! There were garlands and poinsettias, and a choir in red robes singing carols. I took a deep breath and blinked through watery eyes. My husband just shook his head and smiled at me, he's come to expect this from me, and I think he thinks it's kind of cute :hug:

    We had a few minutes before our reservation yet, so we walked around exploring the hotel.

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    I have a thing for grand staircases :)

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    The Gingerbread house was SO cool!

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    Soon enough it was time for our dinner, so we made our way back up the elevator and around the bend, making our way to our restaurant for the night

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    Victoria and Alberts!


    Continued in next post
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  16. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

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    Chapter 7: A Date of Royal Proportions, Part II


    We entered through those exclusive wooden doors and gave our name to the hostess, she took my purse for me and led us to a small table to the left of the restaurant. It was dimly lit with candles and soft lighting, incredibly romantic. In the corner near the front a harpist was playing a Christmas Carol. *Le sigh*

    A few moments later we were introduced to our two waiters for the night, Jon and Geoffery. They were incredibly attentive and thorough, you could tell they took pride in their jobs. Stay tuned for a funny story regarding that a little later.

    We were presented with our customized menus and Jon explained each dish to us before leaving to get our drinks.

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    My custom menu. We had told them we were celebrating our anniversary, even though it was still a little over a month away, because we had decided that this WOULD be our anniversary dinner!

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    My incredibly handsome date!

    For our drinks DH ordered just a water, as he was planning on ordering some wine later in the meal. I went with hot tea, The Mad Tea Party variety! Which I found to be absolutely delicious!

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    Soon we received our amuse bouche plates. Mine and DH's are slightly different because of my dietary requests.

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    DH's plate - From top right clockwise was a lobster bisque, German caviar, duck pate, and sesame crusted tuna.

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    My plate. Top right clockwise is a deviled quail's egg, German caviar, duck pate, and a crab meat spring roll.

    Let me start by saying that I, until this point, did not like seafood, and had tried very little. However, I really WANT to like seafood, and decided if I was going to try it somewhere, V&A's was the place to do it. So reviews. This was the least popular dish of the night. I knew to expect having my culinary thresholds crossed, I was looking forward to it! However, while I am certainly open to new things, when I don't like something, I don't like something. That said, I hate eggs lol. I found the quails egg to be even worse for me than a chicken's egg, and the caviar.. all I could think about was Nemo ( I know!) and how incredibly salty it was. The pate was alright and the crab spring roll was interesting for me. However, I would never choose to eat any of them again.

    DH felt the same, except he enjoyed the bisque and tuna quite a bit more than I did any of my items.

    Jon returned and took our orders for the rest of the night, and we chatted while we waited for our first entree. Something piqued my interest and I couldn't figure out what it was, until I realized it was the harpist's song. I thought and thought about where I knew the tune from, but for the longest time I couldn't place it. And then it hit me, Harry Potter!! She was playing the theme song from Harry Potter! I asked my DH to listen and he confirmed, it totally was obvious now that I'd placed it! That wasn't really something I was expecting to hear in a Five Diamond restaurant, but I loved it!

    Soon after we received our first courses - we both ordered the same thing

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    Prosciutto wrapped Gulf Shrimp with petite French Lentils. This wasn't bad. I think I was thrown because I was expecting it to be warm, but when I bit in I discovered the dish was served chilled. It was hard for me to get my head around cold shrimp, but I ate almost all of it and managed not to gag - this was an improvement on other times I've had seafood!

    DH on the other hand really enjoys both shrimp and lentils, so he loved the dish!

    At this point I had finished my small pot of tea, when Geoffery came out and asked me if I would like another, I quickly said yes, and he was off. As soon as he was out of ear shot my DH whispered to me that they were probably charging me $10 dollars a pot. For a second I forgot we were there under the prix-fixe and panicked, so when Geoffery reappeared I subtly flagged him down and canceled the pot of tea. Once I did this I thought I saw his attitude change, but told myself I was being silly - who would be upset over tea?

    I didn't have time to dwell on it, because just then Jon brought out our second dishes.

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    DH's dish - Alaskan Sablefish. He loved this, truly! It was a first for him and he was not disappointed.

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    My dish - Nantucket Scallops with braised fennel and blood orange gastrique. Oh my goodness. This. Was. Divine!! The scallops were tender and juicy and so sweet with a little bit of a sear on the crust. The orange gastrique was the perfect accompaniment. I could have eaten an entire plate of these and been happy!

    They also brought out the first of three breads of the evening - This was a hand made basic french baguette

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    It was soft and warm and everything a baguette should be. Mmm, carbs. :cloud9:

    Now Geoffery reappeared with refills on water for DH and I, and this time I KNEW I wasn't imaging things. His happy go-lucky joker attitude was gone, replaced by a stiff and almost cold demeanor. But only towards me! Towards my DH he was just as he had always been! I asked DH when Geoffery had left if he noticed, and he said he definitely did. Had I really offended him by denying the tea?? Both DH and I found the thought incredibly funny, but we hushed our laughter as Jon appeared again with our 3rd courses

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    DH's dish - Roasted quail with Asian pears and Serrano Ham Jus. He loved this, I had a bite and agreed! The quail was decadent and rich, and the pears gave it just the right tang and sweetness.

    My dish was the Marcho Farms veal with an apple wine kraut, which I enjoyed very much. For some reason this picture has disappeared somewhere into the abyss that is my computer, I hope I can figure out where it went!

    Geoffry came out with our next bread sample

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    This was a black truffle bread with a consistency very similar to a croissant, served with a truffle and garlic butter. And had this not been a restaurant where dignity is paramount, I would have asked for a basket full, plus a loaf to take home. So. So. SO good. I couldn't stop talking about it! *Insert dreamy sigh* I would pay money for that bread. I mean, I did, but I would do it again too.

    And yet - still no smiles for me from Geoffery!! What on earth?!:confused: We decided there was only one way to test our theory, but I couldn't do it at the cost of $10 dollars a pot.

    As he had been, Jon returned with our next plates, the entrees!!

    Before I dug in I asked (slightly embarrassed) if there was an added cost per pot of tea, and he assured me that only alcohol incurred an extra charge.

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    DH's plate - he ordered... The chicken. Oh, sorry, the "Poulet Rouge with Roasted Butternut Squash Spaetzle" Why he would come to a high class restaurant to order chicken is beyond me. When we left dinner he asked me why I hadn't stopped him and made him order something different. Right, because that ever works! :rolleyes: At any rate, it was GOOD chicken, but at the end of the day, it was still just chicken.

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    My dish - I coughed up the extra money to order to the Australian Kobe Tenderloin, served with smoked garlic-potato puree and oxtail jus, which was topped with braised short ribs.

    This was phenomenal. I have had hundreds of steaks in my lifetime, so I consider myself to be something of a snob, and while I usually find tenderloin to be incredibly tender, it is not the most flavorful cut of beef. But this? Oh man. This was delicious! The oxtail jus was just as amazing, and I can fully admit that I poured every ounce of that juice out of the cup that I could possibly get without licking it. That little black piece you see in the vegetables is smoked black garlic, and it was amazing! They smoke the garlic for 30 days, and in this process it sweetens. You could eat a whole head of black garlic and kiss someone immediately after and they'd never know. This was truly unique and so super delicious.

    The potato puree was good, but not incredibly unique, but the short ribs on top? HOLY. MOSES. Totally on par with the tenderloin! It was amazing, flavorful, savory, and perfect. I dream about these things, ya'll.

    While we were still working on our entrees, Geoffery brought out the last bread sampler. Armed with my knowledge of free tea, I told him I had changed my mind and would LOVE another pot of the Mad Tea Party. Reaction? Imagine with me, if you will, a puppy whose owner has been gone all day and just returned with a bag full of bacon. He was probably just a little more animated. Theory? Bizarrely accurate.

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    Last bread sample - multi grain, and relatively boring - especially compared to the truffle bread that had come right before it!

    Geoffery made record time in bringing back my next pot of tea, and I had my jovial waiter back in full force.

    The tea was the perfect accompaniment to our intermezzo, which Geoffery brought us. Apparently now that I wanted tea, he didn't mind bringing us food? lol

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    DH's dish - White chocolate gelato with shavings. This was really, really good. I regretted not getting it myself!

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    My dish - Parmesan Reggiano, Pleasant Ridge Reserve, Gouda Reypenaer, and Southwestern Belle Chevre
    This was good! But I probably should have gone with something more refreshing after my last plate. I am terribly fond of cheeses, though.

    At this point I had finished my 2nd pot of tea, and without hesitation Geoffery refilled my pot and cup for me (since he learned I liked it with a splash of cream and one cube of natural sugar). This was very kind, but to be honest I was getting a little full of liquid! Still, I didn't want to offend him again, so I drank the tea and excused myself to the ladies room. When I returned, my cup and pot had been filled for a 3rd time! I decided that 4 cups of tea was enough for me and I was just going to leave it. Until Geoffery and Jon came back with our dessert courses, and Geoffery asked me if there was something wrong with that cup of tea. :eek: No, no! *gulp gulp!* At which point he refilled my cup with an enormous smile and told me he was going to get me another pot. I think he might have skipped back into the kitchen. (okay, so I exaggerated a bit there, but you get it!) I looked at DH with wide eyes and he just laughed into his napkin.

    [​IMG]
    DH's dessert - The vanilla crème brulee with fresh berries and, I believe, the cookie was some kind of toffee sugar. This was hands down the best crème brulee we had ever tried, including the ones we'd have later during the week. Sometimes I find crème brulee to be too "custardy", in the sense that it's more clotted or gritty and not as smooth, but this was like silk. He talks about this crème brulee ALL the time!

    [​IMG]
    My dessert - the Tanzanie Chocolate pyramid with a champagne-Chambord truffle and raspberry sauce embellishment. So, this was much bitterer than I was expecting, it was like a very intense dark chocolate, and not as sweet as I was hoping. In hindsight I should have ordered the soufflé or crème brulee, but this would be fantastic for anyone who likes dark chocolate. The truffle was exquisite, and I think had I had more of that sweet raspberry sauce it would have been better for me.

    Dessert came and went with yet *another* pot of tea. That's 4, for those of you who are counting. I was so full I thought I would burst. I managed to get a few sips in, but after 7 cups of tea I was done.

    Soon they brought out the check (For those who are interested it came to $320.00, including the extra charge for the Kobe, and we left a $70 dollar tip. This was by far and away the most expensive meal we had ever had, and my DH had a hard time accepting it, but it was something I *really* wanted to do, and I had saved for it for a very long time. Some people buy toys, I buy dining experiences)

    With the check we also received a rose for me and some "petite fours"
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    There were pomegranate squares, caramel squares, and date nut squares. We didn't end up finishing these, we ate one of the pomegranate squares, both of the caramels, and none of the dates. We were just way too full! The portions for each meal are deceptively small, but there are SO many of them, you get full before you know it!

    Once our debit card was returned to us, we also got a to-go bag with a loaf of date and cranberry bread. The food here, I tell ya, it just keeps on coming!

    When it was all said and done, I had drank 7 1/2 cups of tea that night, so I made sure I used the rest room on the way out of the restaurant. It was close to midnight now and we were exhausted, so we hopped on the monorail back to MK and walked to the bus stop for POP just as the fireworks were ending at Mickey's Christmas party.

    As we were standing in line it hit me. 7 cups worth of tea hit me, that is. I looked around anxiously, no bathroom anywhere even remotely close. It would probably enhance the story to tell you I have the world’s most sensitive bladder. One time I made my best friend pull over on the thru-way to let me run over the hill because I couldn't hold it anymore. I bear the brunt of all kinds of potty jokes in my circle of friends. So my husband was having a good old' time right about now. Just then the bus to Pop pulled in and I knew I was just going to have to hold it.

    We got on the bus and I asked him to let me sit, thinking if I could just sit and cross my legs I'd be okay. Terrible idea. The force of sitting made it even worse, so I scrambled up and made him trade places with me (he was standing holding onto a bar). I spent the entire time doing what we mothers affectionately call the "potty-dance" and focusing all my attention on anything but my ridiculously full bladder. Curse you, Geoffery! The people around me were looking at me cautiously, my husband laughing as quietly as he could but so obviously getting a kick out of this ridiculous predicament. At one point I resigned myself to the fact that I was probably going to pee, and I prayed my black leggings that I had on under my dress would hide it. And then, like a light from heaven, we pulled past the POP! sign and up to the lobby. I literally threw my high heels at my husband and yelled "GET MY PURSE AND FLOWER!" and RAN like Forrest into the bathroom. When I appeared 10 minutes and 5lbs later, my husband handed me my shoes with a smirk. We walked back to the hotel room and climbed quietly into bed, laughing ourselves to sleep.

    Continued In Next Post​
     
  17. PrincessEeyore

    PrincessEeyore "All it takes is faith and trust and a little bit

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2007
    Messages:
    1,758
    Ashley I absolutely loved the update!

    The last paragraph was easily the highlight of my night, and I'm not ashamed to say that I can very easily relate...:laughing:

    That story about Geoffrey is too bizarre, who knew a pot of tea could cause someone to change face so quickly. Oh well, I'm glad you and your husband had such a lovely dinner and laughed the whole night! Your post about V&A may have single-handedly convinced me that it's a place I need to dine at at least once! :goodvibes

    Can't wait for more!
     
  18. RachVH

    RachVH Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2012
    Messages:
    160
    Caught up and subbing in! Loving your trip report so far, especially your posts about V&A's! My DH and I will be eating there in October on our Disneymoon, so I love reading about other peoples experiences.:love:
     
  19. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2010
    Messages:
    198
    I'm glad I'm not the only one!! ;)

    It WAS strange, too weird to really believe had I not actually been there myself. And even then we kept thinking "Surely not. Tea??"

    You really should visit once! Some people have said it isn't worth it, but that dining trip was an incredible experience for us. It was a chance for us to try things we wouldn't be able to try literally anywhere else. I told my DH that for my 30th birthday, all I wanted was to go back there, but I want to reserve the Chef's table! So we'll see ;)

    Welcome!! And Congratulations on your marriage! Thanks so much for reading along! And great choice! My advice to you would be not to be afraid of letting them know about any foods you don't like ahead of time. Some people have said that it ruins the experience, but for me it definitely did not. If there are things you know you don't like, don't spend money for them just because they're "gourmet" - as I learned with the eggs haha :)

    Thank you both for commenting! As a new poster it can be kind of scary writing a report, and a little insecure thinking "Am I doing this right?!" so your feedback is a real encouragement!
     
  20. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2010
    Messages:
    198
    Chapter 8: Heading Down On The River


    6 AM came too early the morning following our late night dinner (but doesn't it always?), and once more we all woke up to the sounds of Nana shuffling about the room getting ready for the day.

    My eyelids fought against me with all of their might, beating wildly against my half-hearted will to pry them open, but a few moments later I was up and dressed. Little voices were quietly babbling from their cribs, and I was greeted with luminous smiles from two precious babies. Somehow, those nearly toothless proclamations of love have a way of brightening your whole day.

    Good morning hugs and kisses were passed around and as soon as the babies were changed we headed down for some (much needed) coffee and breakfast.

    We refilled our mugs with the unremarkable Nestle coffee and grabbed some bagels and fruit to go - no time to stay for a leisurely breakfast today, we had to go back and pack, in just a little while we were off to Port Orleans French Quarter! :woohoo:

    We packed up our things and triple and quadruple checked to make sure all was accounted for. Only on vacation can you lose so many things in such a small amount of space. We learned that lesson before, so we were much more careful now.

    Around 9:30 we headed out to the Pop bust stop and bid adieu to the value resort, bound for more moderate luxuries ;)

    [​IMG]
    Cya, Pop!

    On the ride over to the French Quarter my mom expressed her hope that this resort wouldn't be like Pop. It was far too cramped for her (and to be honest, we felt the same way with 5 people and a double stroller and two cribs), the beds we found to be like rocks, and she was disappointed there was no hot tub. But really, for the cost, what more did we expect?

    I assured her that we were moving from a Value resort to a Moderate, which meant the amenities would be nicer. She nodded her head and I sent up a silent prayer that I was right. I'd booked POFQ because I had *read* that it was the best of the moderates, tied with POR, but for some reason the FQ theme appealed to me more.

    We pulled under a green wrought iron awning and my hopes raised, and as soon as we pushed our way through the glass doors and into the courtyard I knew my prayers were answered. I think we all just stopped and looked around for a few seconds, before being so rudely interrupted by two toddlers who wanted to explore too, and were making it known how unfair it was that they were strapped in this rolling prison.

    I went and checked in at the front desk where I received my KTTW cards and information about the Deluxe Dining. She asked me if I needed help with any of the reservations - nope! Had em all booked 180 days ago! :thumbsup2 (Don't mind me, I was just a little proud that I didn't look like a rookie here :rotfl:)

    Our room was ready so we were on our way to find it. Every step we took into the resort filled my heart with joy and excitement - and best of all I could see it on my DH and DM's faces. They loved it! The best was yet to come, though, because what I hadn't told them was that I had upgraded our room to a River View, I just knew they were going to love it.

    We found our building and I took the elevator (have you ever tried pushing a double stroller up a few dozen stairs? Not thanks! lol) and as we turned the corner BAM, we were here!

    [​IMG]

    Inside we found a CM already setting up the pack n play cribs for us, already we were off to a better start!

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    Everyone checking out the room.

    [​IMG]
    Hey Mickey!

    It was just beautiful! Everything still smelled new, it was clean and bright and we just adored the decor! AND, it was BIGGER! We now had no problem rolling our stroller into the room and parking it out of the way, nor did we trip over each other once the cribs were set up.

    But the best part?

    Our view!!
    [​IMG]

    I can't even tell you how excited everyone was. The resort was so relaxing and calm, and our view was just absolutely perfect. Every so often we'd see a carriage trotting down the lane or the ferry taxing across the river. I could have lived there.

    [​IMG]

    We decided to head down to Sassagoula to grab some food, since by this time it was close to lunch and naps!

    Once again my camera died, so the only pictures I have are from the cell phone. *sigh* sadly, this would be a recurring theme throughout the trip.

    [​IMG]
    The path from our building leading to the pool and the ferry dock.

    [​IMG]
    Main courtyard!

    LoveBug fell asleep in her stroller on the way down, so while Nana went and got food, I took the opportunity to capture some memories of DH and Looberry :)

    [​IMG]
    Blowing kisses

    [​IMG]
    :love::love::love:

    LoveBug woke up as soon as Nana got back with some food, we ate and decided that it was such a beautiful day we'd check out the pool!

    We took a dip and let the girls splash around for a while while Nana relaxed on the patio
    [​IMG]

    Pretty soon it was nap time, so we went back up to the room and dried off.

    [​IMG]
    LoveBug after a nice swim :)

    Then we all settled in for a nice long nap!


    Continued in next post
     
  21. disneydreaminA115

    disneydreaminA115 Long time lurker - coming out to play!

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2010
    Messages:
    198
    Chapter 9: A Yakkity Dinner (Alternately entitled: The Post That Tried Not To Exist)



    **I think I've written this post about thirteen hundred thousand times, but thanks to a spastic computer, it never published. I even tried to type it into Word and save it, but once again the virus from hades refused to allow me passage. Fortunately a 36 hour hard drive wipe was "all" it took, we're back in business now!

    I'm honestly not even certain that anyone is still reading this, and it crossed my mind to chalk it up as a loss, call it a learning experience, and move on. BUT, I am determined to get one full report under my belt before beginning another one (hint hint!), and we haven't even really gotten to the best part of the trip. SO! I'm hopping back in the saddle and setting my mind to finishing this, STAT!**




    We awoke some hours later to stirring, and hopefully well rested, babies. We had all slept later than I anticipated, apparently the past few days had worn us out more than we realized. We had planned to spend some time at our first park of the trip this night, but we were quickly approaching our ADR, after which the park would be closing, so I hurried everyone to get ready and in just a few minutes we were on our way!

    [​IMG]
    To the Animal Kingdom!

    Now, the week that we took this trip was promoted as one of the slowest weeks in Disney, that was a big part of why we decided on it (and my obsessive love of Christmas), but even with that in mind, this is not what we expected to see.

    [​IMG]
    A nearly EMPTY park. At first we thought maybe we'd hit all the crowds once we got through security.

    [​IMG]
    But no! This is the way it was the entire time we were there! It was a little strange, to be honest, but we weren't complaining! We literally walked on every single ride we wanted to do, and some of the other ones were closed - and actually found ourselves a little *whispers* bored!

    [​IMG]
    Obligatory Tree of Life picture :)

    We still had 45 minutes until our ADR but we thought we'd check in early to see if the had anything available, because at this point we were just meandering through stores that we had no intention of purchasing from.

    Sure enough the hostess said there was PLENTY of space (because the park was empty! ha!) and we could come on in. Thus began our dinner at Yak and Yeti!

    [​IMG]
    DH and Looberry!

    Now, I only had my cell phone camera, and the food pictures stunk, BUT I've seen some other Disers "borrow" from the interwebz, so I'm going to do the same!

    This was our first taste of the DxDP, and we quickly realized we may have bitten off more than we could chew (har har;)), and coming from a big ol' foodie like me, that's saying something!

    As you know, we each got an appetizer.

    I ordered the Wok Fried Green Beans
    [​IMG]
    Which were freaking delicious! We have a thing, fried green beans and I. *insert dreamy sigh* By I digress.

    DH got the pot stickers
    [​IMG]
    I don't care for pot stickers, something about the texture makes me gag. But he loved them, so you'll have to take his word for it.

    And Nana ordered the Pork Egg Rolls!
    [​IMG]
    Which I LOVED. I briefly considered order these for my entree, but then I came to my senses.

    For an entree I ordered the Beef and Broccoli
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    Yum. Yum, yum, yum. I love steak. And Broccoli. And starch. Winner!

    DH ordered the Shaoxing Beef and Shrimp
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    And he absolutely raves about it to this day.

    And Nana ordered the ribs!
    [​IMG]
    Which were pretty good. They weren't great - but we have some awesome rib joints up here, so we consider ourselves a little spoiled. For being a theme park restaurant, we thought these were definitely good!

    At this point we were all stuffed beyond comprehension, but I'd heard SO much about a certain dessert that I HAD to try it, no matter if it landed me in the indigestion infirmary.

    The cream cheese wontons
    [​IMG]
    Nom. Nom, nom, nom. I love these - SO glad we tried them! I only managed to eat one, and dh and Nana split one, and the girls ate the rest of them. (oh, they'd eaten off our plates the whole dinner too. I'm not one of those moms that lets her kids only eat dessert. Usually. :rolleyes1 AHEM.)

    With full bellies we managed to meander out of the restaurant. The park was closing in just a few minutes and the kids were getting grumpy again anyway, so we made our way out. The park was beautiful at night with the lights shining, that was probably my favorite part.

    That being said, I don't foresee us going back to the AK until the girls are old enough to ask for it. I don't care much for the zoo feel anyway, but when we do go back, chances are good we'll stop at Y&Y again.

    We made our way back to POFQ and hopped back in the pool for a while. It had been a really warm day, but we noticed the temperatures dropping off quite a bit more than they had the past few nights. So, we packed up the girls and gave them a warm bath back in the room, tucked them in bed, and then DH and I went out to the bar to have some quiet time while Nana went to bed in the room.

    When we finished our beers we walked around the resort, taking it all in. I love POFQ. It is so absolutely beautiful. There was a movie being played on the open grassy area where a few families had gathered. I look forward to doing that some day with our kiddos.

    We found ourselves down at the dock and decided to hop on board the ferry and take the trip down to DD. The ride was so much fun. We were fascinated by the tree-house villas, and if we ever stay at DW with a huge group, I'm TOTALLY booking those!

    We decided that we didn't feel like shopping that night, so we just stayed on the boat for the ride back, talking and laughing and having some much needed private adult time. (Not like that. this is a family park, get your head right! ;) )

    By the time we got back it was close to 11 so we decided to call it a night and hope that tomorrow - our second day in the parks - would prove to be more of a success!



    **Thanks to the Disneyfoodblog and other various google images sources that provided these pictures**

    Continued in next post
     

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