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Happily Ever After Begins Here -- An Oct. 2012 TR Updated! 11/17!

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by Missyrose, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    Hi friends! We last left off with me sound asleep at Beach Club and Franklin burning the midnight oil taking some GORGEOUS photos at Epcot EMH.

    We were up bright and early the next morning. After a quick breakfast of bagels in the villa (gotta love that kitchenette!), we headed out for our first full day at the parks.

    I was decked out in my Ariel ensemble (my Ariel T-shirt, an Ariel bow on my Minnie ears and an Ariel necklace!), so I had to stop and take a photo with my favorite mermaid outside BCV.

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    It was just after rope drop, but luckily our quick commute meant we’d be at Epcot in no time. Which way would we head once we were through the International Gateway?

    Where does ANYONE go at Epcot at rope drop? Why to The Land, of course!

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    We followed the streaming crowd downstairs to...

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    Standby was already at 35 minutes, boo! So Franklin grabbed Fastpasses. I know I’m in the minority when I say I really like Soarin’, I don’t LOVE Soarin to the point where I need to ride it multiple times in one day. So I was perfectly fine to just ride it once using the FP.

    But with Test Track closed for its mondo refurb, an Epcot touring plan really never materialized for that day. We literally looked at each other and had this conversation:

    Me: “What do you want to do?”

    Franklin: “I dunno, what do you want to do?”

    Me: “Well, we’ve never done Living with the Land and it’s right there?”

    Franklin: “Okay.”

    Yep, that’s right. At 9:30 a.m. we wandered over and hopped onto a Living With the Land boat. If the Disney gods hadn’t revoked our park commando cards yet, this act surely sealed our fate. Onward with the tour!

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    It was a very cool ride. It is incredible to see how they grow all those different things in that many different ways, and to get a peak at everyone working in there was truly a treat. It’s definitely an aspect of Epcot that would have made Walt very happy.

    We still had plenty of time before our FP for Soarin would come due, so it was again time to figure out which attraction we’d head to next. To continue our backwards rope drop morning, we headed for another non-E-ticket attraction: Nemo!

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    Franklin was VERY excited to photograph this dark ride with his new camera. I think, once again, he outdid himself!

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    First it was like whoa. Then it was like whoa. And then it was like whooooooa.

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    Anyone else find it a little odd that Disney chose to use the exact same clam shells for the new Little Mermaid ride in New Fantasyland? It doesn’t bother me, but I expected a little more Disney creativity in that choice.

    And now for some silly fun before we leave The Living Seas.

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    For as much as we joked about picking all the wrong attractions at rope drop, we were really having one of those glorious stop-and-smell-the-roses kind of morning at Epcot. We had been on two great attractions that we could really sit back and enjoy. And the best part? We still had the whole day ahead of us!

    Have any of you had a topsy-turvy kind of day at the parks? Which is the most off-the-wall attraction you've headed to first at any of the parks?

    On a completely different note, I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas, filled with great food, family and friends! Love you all!
     
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  3. Disney9.9.10

    Disney9.9.10 DIS Veteran

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    All caught up! Your illuminations and WS photos are breathtaking! Every single one of them. :goodvibes
     
  4. natebenma

    natebenma DIS Veteran

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    Note to self: Do not read Missy's updates before bedtime. I had a dream about Soarin' at Rope Drop.

    Missy- I love that you have an Ariel outfit! Great picture with you and the BCV mermaid.

    Franklin- that picture seals the deal for my vote for your entry into the Photographer's Hall of Fame. I have seen many, many photos of the Ariel statue. This is literally the first one I have seen where she does not look like a creepy addict. Nice job!

    I agree with you about Soarin'. Like it! But it is not my favorite Disney attraction. Not even my favorite in EPCOT (SSE). Living With the Land, is one of my favorites, too, and I'm so glad you got a chance to ride it. Once again, great pictures, especially of the diorama scenes.

    And Dude, the pictures from the Nemo ride are TOTALLY AWESOME!


    Most off-the-wall start in a park for me was during the middle school class trip- First attraction of the trip- Stitch's Great Escape- :sad:

    I would have to say the least commando thing my family has done at rope drop is start our AK day with Primevil Whirl and Dinosaur (although I did run for FP to EE while the boys rode PW)

    .
     
  5. Nermel9

    Nermel9 DIS Veteran

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    I love your Ariel outfit, I have the same shirt! :thumbsup2

    Yay, Epcot rope drop! Yay Soarin! I have to ride Soarin' multiple times, so rope drop is at Epcot is a must do for me! I would have hopped right in that 35 minute standby line, to me, that's short for Soarin'! :rotfl:

    Wow, those pics of The Seas with Nemo are beautiful! :worship: I kind of wish the LM ride had something other than clamshells to ride in too, but what else could they have used that fit the theme? :confused3 :rotfl:

    Merry Christmas! :santa:
     
  6. Belle83

    Belle83 DIS Veteran

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    STUNNING pictures of Illuminations and Epcot. :thumbsup2 My point and shoot boring digital camera broke during our last trip, so I need a new one and this makes me *really* want to upgrade.
     
  7. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    Thanks! We do love our Epcot time. :goodvibes

    Soarin at RD has to be one of the worst-constructed entrances in all of WDW. Who's bright idea was it for masses of people to have to go down flights of stairs in a rush?!?!

    My collection of Disney accessories is growing steadily, though this Ariel outfit is by far one of my most complete ensembles. :thumbsup2


    For me, I can do one ride on Soarin' per day. Anything beyond that, I start to get annoyed by various things about the attraction: the long wait, even WITH FP, the scratched up film, the sometimes broken smell machines. But for that one ride per day, I'm good.

    I could not get over Franklin's Nemo pictures. He usually gets so frustrated in the EAC part when the turtles come out blurry and this time, it didn't!


    Ugh, that Stitch start to the school trip was brutal and I was shocked your head didn't literally explode! :furious:

    Wow, I would have never guessed your family would have ever head for anything other than EE on your AK mornings!


    Thanks Jen! I looooove that shirt. It might be my favorite Disney shirt that I own.

    I sometimes wish I loved Soarin' more than I do, but I guess it does save me time on our Epcot days.

    Yep, I'm definitely nitpicking on the LM ride, mainly because everything else in NFL is so perfect! :rotfl:

    Merry Christmas! I hope you and Brandon have a great holiday!


    Thank you! :goodvibes Disney is definitely a place where you want to have a good camera, there's just so many beautiful things to capture!

    I'm heading over to your TR now!
     
  8. 2xcited2sleep

    2xcited2sleep DIS Veteran

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    More amazing photos... love, love, love!!!! I do love Soarin' but not obsessively so. Once a trip is enough. Glad Test Track is open again to take some of the morning rush.

    I am all for a countdown to your Jan trip featuring restaurants. It is all about the food!!!!
     
  9. marDgreen88

    marDgreen88 DIS Veteran

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    Aww, this is the first time I realized that you got the customizable Minnie ears! I would love to do that, but ahhh I'm too cheap. :lmao: I love that Ariel bow!

    Ya know, sometimes it's okay to not go full commando first thing in the morning. I actually think it's a really good idea to go to the less obvious attractions first, especially if you already got fastpasses for the big guys!

    Merry Christmas! :goodvibes
     
  10. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    Countdown it is then! I've got the first installment coming right up. :thumbsup2

    Getting the customizable Minnie ears were the best money I've ever spent. This way, I don't have to choose between wearing my Minnie ears and wearing one of Hayley's AMAZING bows!

    Epcot without Test Track was a weird animal. We found ourselves saying "we should really go ride Mission Space" a lot. And yet, we never really found ourselves over on that side of the park all that often.


     
  11. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    Can you believe it? We’ve got one month until our next trip! Just to give everyone some background, this trip is to celebrate Franklin’s birthday (January 30) and also it will be our first trip “home” to Boardwalk since buying into DVC. Plus between busy work seasons and wedding planning, I think we’re both really looking forward to some time away.

    For those of you who don’t know how DVC works, here’s the simple breakdown: You can book reservations at your home resort at 11 months out and can book at any of the other resorts starting at seven months out (we’ve got two contracts -- one at Boardwalk and the other at Bay Lake Tower). Planning trips 11 months out often means the plans for the trip grow and change as the months pass, and this trip certainly fits that bill.

    One of the biggest changes to this trip came last week. After reading the umpteenth “BWV buses suck” thread, I started to research rental cars and ended up finding a Budget rental for $144 for the week. Now I’m hoping I might find a better deal in the coming weeks, but for now, we’re good with that price.

    Here’s how arrival day will look for us... It will start with a VERY early wakeup call. Our flight departs at 7 a.m. :scared1:, which will be painful for the first few hours of the day, but it will give us a nice, full first day at Disney. :cool1:

    We’ll take DME to the resort and check in. Our fabulous Boardwalk view villa won’t actually be ready yet, so we’ll stow our stuff with bell services and hop on the shuttle to the rental car office.

    After picking up the rental car, we’ll cruise over to Downtown Disney for lunch at...

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    Mmmmm, sandwiches! From there, we’ll pop into Publix to do a little stocking up for our villa, before heading back to Boardwalk.

    We’ll probably hang out, check out some of the sights and sounds on the Boardwalk during the afternoon before driving over to DHS (yes, I know, we could walk to DHS from BW, but there’s a plan...). Our only goal at DHS will be seeing Fantasmic for the first time in four years!

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    The last time Franklin shot Fantasmic was four years and three cameras ago, so I cannot wait to see what he comes up with this time. The plan is to see the early show (6:30 p.m.) and then roll with the crowds out of the park. We’ll hop in our rental car (so handy!) and head back to DTD, where I will FINALLY get to try Raglan Road for the first time.

    Raglan Road has been on each of the past three Disney itineraries and somehow, each and every time we’ve gone to Disney, that ADR has been bumped. :crazy2: But not this year! I will finally get to try all the yummy food people have talked about all these years.
     
  12. JanetMom

    JanetMom DIS Veteran

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    Sounds like a great first day!

    We love Raglan Road and try to work it in to every trip. I'm sure you will enjoy it.
     
  13. natebenma

    natebenma DIS Veteran

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    :woohoo: for another countdown! I think restaurants are a GREAT theme!

    We have tried Earl of Sandwich once and never been to Ragland Road. We are still in the must-do T-Rex when we go to DTD. Need to get past Ben's fixation on dinos before we try other places.

    Can't wait to see Franklin's pictures at Fantasmic! When I saw the show in June, it had been four years since I had seen it too (and only my second time ever).
     
  14. PracPerfPatricia

    PracPerfPatricia DIS Veteran

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    Very pretty tiara...:goodvibes & I think any kind of countdown that involves Dis Food is an awesome idea...

    I haven't been on the Land in sooooo long... I'm glad to know everything's going well there... lol...

    Great pic on Little Mermaid...:thumbsup2 (btw... cute photo with the Ariel Statue... I have one with David that looks like he's crushing on the statue...:lmao:)

    Raglan Road is yum and really fun atmosphere... we just finally did it...:thumbsup2 Really enjoyed it...:goodvibes

    Hurray for one month...!
     
  15. Splashboat

    Splashboat Always looking for cheap airfare

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    Remember that the boat ride to Epcot and HS is really nice too. Plus, Franklin would have an opportunity to take more pictures from the water.
     
  16. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    Always love to hear good reviews of the restaurants we pick! I seriously cannot wait to try Raglan Road.

    I know people seem to really like the food at T-Rex. But it really just reminds of of Rainforest Cafe and I'm not a fan. We used to have a Rainforest Cafe in our local mall and my sister LOVED it, so we went often. I didn't love the food and tired of the animal noises and chaos. So I guess that's what's held me back from trying T-Rex. Though I'm sure when we take Tanner back to Disney, T-Rex will end up on the list. :lmao:

    Your TR is what sparked me to want to see Fantasmic again! I can't wait to see Franklin's pictures either!


    Thanks! You should totally post that picture of David with Ariel, we'd love to see it!

    More love for Raglan Road. I can honestly say that I've never read a report where someone DIDN'T like that restaurant.

    One month, yeah! :woohoo:


    Oh, we love the Friendship Boats and take them often. In fact, you'll see there's a boat trip on Day 2 of the January trip. I think for arrival day, we'll drive, just so we have quick access to our car to get to our ADR at DTD. Thanks for the suggestion! :goodvibes
     
  17. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    After a relaxing first day, we’ll be up bright and early for breakfast in our villa. Then we’ll walk or take the Friendship Boat to DHS for rope drop.

    We’ll hit the biggies:

    Toy Story Mania

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    Rock-N-Roller Coaster

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    Star Tours

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    I never get sick of that photo!

    Franklin will take a wild ride on Tower of Terror (P.S. Has anyone seen the blog post on Touring Plans that say Disney has randomly been shutting down an elevator shaft, which has been doubling wait times?!?!? So frustrating to plan around that. Then again, it should be quiet enough in late January that only one elevator may be operating anyhow.)

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    We have an 11:30 a.m. ADR at our DHS favorite, 50s Primetime Cafe. :banana:

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    The afternoon is free for us to continue on at DHS, maybe fitting in my DHS must-do -- the animation academy!

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    Or maybe take the Friendship Boat back to the resort if the weather is nice enough for a swim.

    At some point in the evening, we’ll head into the World Showcase for Illuminations and an 8:55 p.m. ADR at Tokyo Dining, another new restaurant for us! I figure I’ll check in, tell them we’re watching Illuminations from the balcony and then we’ll eat after the show is over. Then we’ll mosey back over to Boardwalk after dinner.
     
  18. disneyluvrtink

    disneyluvrtink Mouseketeer

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    Congratulations on your engagement!!! I hope to find a guy who can put up with my disney addiction too! lol!! What kind of camera did he use? Those photos turned out amazing (sorry if you already posted the answer, I looked and didn't see it)
     
  19. Pixel Dust

    Pixel Dust It's a trap!

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    Thanks! I'm using a Nikon D600. There's more camera info in my signature, but feel free to ask any more photography questions. I can explain the settings for each photo if you would like, too. I love helping people take better photos.
     
  20. DisneyFreak06

    DisneyFreak06 DIS Veteran

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    I am really enjoying this report. Thanks for sharing. And Franklin, what settings did you use for the TOT picture! I've never seen such a clear picture here.... and it's now a goal for me!
     
  21. heaven2dc

    heaven2dc DIS Veteran

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    Missy - love your drawing of Jiminy Cricket! You should def frame it! I can't wait to see your engagement ring (did I miss that somehow yet?)
     

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