He's Not Heavy, He's Your Brother - Nov '16 TR (Updated 1/9)

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by cinderaimee, Jan 3, 2017.

  1. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Hello there! Thank you for reading! This is my very first trip report, following my very first trip back to the World after 15 years away. I read a lot (A LOT) of trip reports leading up to my vacation and I gained so much from them that I really wanted to write my own to share my experience and also just as a way to remember the trip. I had a small PTR here if you want to check out how the trip looked going into it.

    Who

    -Aimee (that's me!), my husband (DH), and our sons - DS1 (also referred to as A, age 4), and DS2 (or T, age 2)

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    We live in the Washington, DC area. DH and I both work in government. I did longer introductions in the PTR post, but to summarize, I grew up going to WDW often as a child and my most recent trip was in 2001. DH had only been to Epcot once as a child and hated it. I have to say I was so surprised by DH on this trip. He is known as a bit of a Grumpy Gills and I wasn't sure how he would handle the crowds or the lines or the kids.
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    {Spoiler Alert} he LOVED WDW. Before the end of the first day, he was talking about "the next time we come", and he was so enthusiastic! He wanted to ride every ride, see every show, meet every character, do anything that could be done. It was honestly really wonderful.

    When

    November 14-19, 2016

    Where

    Disney's Boardwalk Villas!

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    (Thanks for the picture, google)

    Our "Fairy Godmother" is a DVC owner and let us use her points to stay at the BW and it was wonderful.

    An alternate title for this TR would be "pictures of my children standing in front of things". So be warned. Lots of pictures of the kids. And lots of words. I have lots of words already written so I hope you like reading.

    Thanks again for reading!

     
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  2. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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  3. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Day 1 - Monday, November 14- Arrival Day/Disney Springs - Part 1

    The night before we left, I was up until 2 am packing and double checking all my lists. When the alarm went off just a few short hours later around 5:30, I woke up with no problems. It was finally Disney day! I took a quick shower and got ready and woke up DH. Then I finished packing up our toiletries and phone chargers. I went into DS1's room to pull some clothes out of his dresser and he woke up right away and asked if it was Disney World Day. I said yes and he practically jumped out of bed! He was so excited!

    DS1 and I went downstairs and I quickly made banana smoothies for the boys, then I got DS1 dressed. H and I loaded up the car, then I woke up DS2 just before we walked out the door and just left him in his pajamas as he was pretty cranky.

    Our flight was scheduled to depart at 9:25 and I wanted to leave the house by 6:30 at the latest. Without traffic, the drive is about 45 minutes. I think we finally ended up leaving around 6:40 and almost immediately ran into traffic! There is always traffic in he DC area, but this was worse than usual. DH pulled up his google maps app and it rerouted us around three accidents. We got to DCA around 8:00, found a kiosk to pick up our boarding passes and paid for the checked bags, and then got through security fairly easily. Thank goodness for the tsa family lane!

    We found our gate (not very hard - DCA is a pretty small airport) and then grabbed some breakfast at Dunkin Donuts. Donuts for myself and the kids and H had a bagel. Before boarding, I took DS2 to the bathroom to change him out of his pajamas. The kids ran around a bit and looked out the windows at all the airplanes.

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    Soon it was time to board!

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    We were flying on JetBlue for the first time, and I have to say I was impressed! Boarding was fast and the seats were comfortable and roomy and clean. The kids loved the screens on the seats and playing with the controls. DS2 had a few fussy moments and we had to walk the aisle a couple times, but he was pretty content watching the ipad and playing with the toys we brought.

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    DS1 was a rockstar and didn't give us any problems on the plane, but he did complain about his ears hurting a little.

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    We did have a bit of a messy moment - before we boarded the plane, I had filled up the kid's travel cups with apple juice and water. These are cups with a straw and a lid that seals. A little while after we took off, I took out DS2's cup and opened it and the juice exploded out! I guess it was the pressure? Most of it ended up on me and there was really nothing for me to do but wait for it to dry. Next time I'll bring the cups empty and fill them up after we're in the air.

    Even though we sat on the runway for about 15 minutes in line to take off, we still landed at Orlando earlier than scheduled, around 11:45, taxied around for about 3 weeks or so, eventually got to our gate. We easily found our way to the Magical Express where we scanned our Magic Bands for the first time!

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    There were no lines and we got on a bus fairly quickly and then sat for probably 15 minutes while they loaded up with more passengers.

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    Soon we were on our way! DS2 fell asleep a few minutes after the bus started moving.

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    Before we knew it, we were driving under the Disney World sign!

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    The bus made a quick stop first at the Caribbean Beach Resort, and then we were pulling into our home for the next week - Disney's Boardwalk Resort!

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    While we were on the bus, I got a text that our room wasn't quite ready yet, so we dropped off our carry-on bags with bell services and picked up the double stroller I had rented. After a bathroom stop, we headed down to the bus stop just as the bus to our first destination was pulling up - Disney Springs!
     
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  5. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Day 1 - Monday, November 14- Arrival Day/Disney Springs - Part 2

    We boarded the bus to DS, which stopped at the Swan & Dolphin on the way there and then dropped us off.

    My cousin and grandma were coming to meet up with us there - I hadn't seen my grandma in almost 10 years and she's never met my boys. My family in Florida lives about 2 hours away from WDW so I arranged with my cousin to drive grandma up to see us. We had a 3:00 reservation at T-Rex and we arrived at DS around 1:30 so we spent some time looking around. We took our first Photopass pictures in front of a Christmas tree there.

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    Even though we were having lunch soon, we were starving by this point, so we grabbed a snack at Morimoto Street Food - a shrimp tempura roll, kalbi bao, and a South Seas Slush to share.

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    It was all pretty tasty and the boys really liked the meat from the bao - it was pretty close to the kalbi DH's mom makes that they eat all the time.

    Soon after that, I got a text from my cousin that they had arrived and were waiting near the World of Disney store. We met up with them and chatted for a few minutes. We were still a bit early for our reservation so we walked over to the Lego store and H looked around with the boys while I caught up with my grandma and cousin.

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    I fell in love with the Lego castle. Someone buy it for me, please?

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    After a little while we checked in at T-Rex and were seated about 10 minutes later.

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    My boys loved this restaurant! I was a bit worried it would scare DS2, but he was in awe of everything! His word for dinosaur then was "sharp", so he spent the whole time pointing at things and saying "Look! sharp! cool!" We sat in the room that has the meteor shower, so there was a lot to look at! This is the look of awe he had on his face most of the time

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    DH took DS1 around for a walk while we were waiting for the food and took some more pictures of the different areas.

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    I'm lacking in food photos here (and for the rest of the report, so get used to it), but I had the Pork-asaurus sandwich with waffle fries, and H ordered the Boneyard Buffet. My cousin had the Mastadon Stuffed Chicken and my grandma had a regular burger. We ordered a kid's meal with a cheeseburger for DS1, and DS2 ate our fries and some of the meat off H's plate, plus a cup of applesauce. I've heard mixed reviews about the food here, so I didn't have high expectations but I thought it was pretty good and I really liked the waffle fries.

    While we were eating, I got a text that our room was ready. The text had a link to a map of the resort, but I couldn't make heads or tails of where our room would be on that map! After we ate, we took the boys to play in the gravel pit while I spent some more time talking with my grandma.

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    We had an ADR for Beaches & Cream at 7:10 that night. By this time it was around 5:00 and we were all already exhausted, so H and I decided to cancel the B&C reservation :( I had really been looking forward to eating there, but we all just wanted to get to our room and relax. I also wanted to go into the World of Disney store to look around and find an autograph book for the boys, but we were all pretty overwhelmed so I decided to give up on that and pick one up at the park the next day. I called and canceled the reservation and then we said our goodbyes to grandma.

    We spent a few more minutes checking out all the Lego sculptures

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    Then headed back through DS to the resort bus stop. We found the Boardwalk stop and waited about 10 minutes for a bus.

    We arrived back at the Boardwalk, collected our bags from Bell Services and headed up to our room. Fairy Godmother had reserved a pool-view room, and when I checked in online, my first request was a room close to the elevator, then a high floor. Our room was on the top floor, so we got that. We got off the elevator and started walking. And walking. And around the corner and walked some more. 10 years later we made it to our room, certainly not near the elevator.

    I neglected to take any nice room pictures so here are some pictures from Google.

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    It basically looked identical to these pictures. Our checked bags were waiting for us in the room. I opened the doors to the balcony to this lovely view of the creepy clown pool!

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    Looking to the right, that purple blob is the Tower of Terror (this is award-winning photography here)

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    We relaxed in the room and unpacked a bit, then decided to check out the boardwalk. We walked from one end to the other and DS2 quickly fell asleep in the stroller. It was around 8:00 and we were all feeling a bit hungry, so we grabbed a pepperoni pizza from the window and sat at a table by the water. It had been sprinkling a bit since we left Disney Springs, but it had more or less stopped by this point. (spoiler alert: this was all the rain we saw this week!)

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    DS1 started complaining that he was tired (and he is not one to admit he is ever actually tired) so we headed back up to the room. When we walked in, some gifts from Fairy Godmother had been delivered and I was so surprised!

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    Each boy had personalized Mickey ears, a personalized blanket, stuffed Mickey and an autograph book (good thing I didn't buy one!) The cooler had snacks and drinks inside. I immediately called my friend to thank her and chatted a bit and put her on the phone with DS1 who told her how much he loved his new Mickey. It was such a lovely touch! She was certainly living up to her Fairy Godmother title.

    We made up the sofa bed for the boys and transferred DS2 from the stroller to the bed without waking him up. DS1 fell asleep while I was on the phone so we tucked him in bed as well.

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    I organized the room for a bit, packed up the park bags for the next day, and took a shower. I just have to say - the shower in our room was amazing. Incredible water pressure, never-ending hot water. I think I took a 20 or 30 minute shower every night.

    We went to bed and fell asleep pretty quickly. Tomorrow we're headed to the Magic Kingdom!

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    Last edited: Jan 5, 2017
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  6. JessP81

    JessP81 Earning My Ears

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    I am excited to hear more about your trip. I am currently planning our families next trip to the world and my DS will be 2 at that time. I have been searching reports for those that have made the trip with that age children for any helpful hints I can learn :)
     
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  7. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Thanks for reading along! Disney with a 2 year old was quite an experience, but totally worth it!
     
  8. luckylady

    luckylady DIS Veteran

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    Following. Want a great fairy godmother you had. Your boys are cuties.
     
  9. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Thank you! Yes, Fairy Godmother is wonderful. She doesn't have any grandchildren so she's adopted mine and spoils them rotten. We're lucky to have her.
     
  10. jvz82

    jvz82 Mouseketeer

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    That hotel looks amazing! I haven't been there before. You have an awesome Fairy Godmother, how cool.

    I also have 2 and 4 year old sons. :) Fun ages!
     
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  11. ariane37

    ariane37 Dis veteran

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    Following! Looks like you had a really good first day and those gifts from your Fairy Godmother are wonderful! I also think that's great you finally got to see your grandmother after so many years :hug:
    We've stayed at BWV 4x and just stayed at the BCV for the first time last Thanksgiving. We enjoy being at the Epcot resorts and having the BW area to walk around at night. However I agree those BW hallways can be endless! Our last stay there was Nov. 2015. We had some.....issues unfortunately. We had to change rooms and we went from a BW view room 2 doors down from the elevator to a no view room 675 doors down from the elevator :rotfl2:
    Looking forward to reading more!
     
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  12. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Thank you for reading! It's a fun age, but exhausting!

    Oh I read your report! We had no issues like you did, but I did think of you walking up and down that long hallway over and over trying to get your bathroom cleaned :sad2:
     
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  13. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Day 2 - Tuesday, November 15 - Magic Kingdom - Part 1

    I think the first night at the resort, the boys had a bit of trouble sleeping. They aren't great sleepers to begin with and put them in a new place and change up their routines... yeah. I think it was around 4:30 when DS2 woke up his brother and me. I laid down with them and I got DS1 back to sleep until about 6:00, but I don't think DS2 ever went back to sleep, and I only dozed a bit. Around 6:00 DS1 spied a bit of sunlight around the edge of the curtain and declared it daytime and was up for the day.

    I had packed a bunch of breakfast bars and a case of apple sauce pouches, so I gave the boys a little breakfast and put Disney Jr. on the TV while I started some coffee and got myself ready. Eventually H woke up and we finished getting the boys ready.

    My goal this morning was to make the Welcome Show at 8:40 and I think we left the room around 7:45. We walked down to the bus stop where a bus for the Magic Kingdom was loading up (must have got that VIP bus package I keep hearing about in here). The bus wasn't too full this morning and I sat with the boys while H handled the stroller.

    We arrived at MK without incident and got through the security line quite quickly. I believe we got through the tapstiles around 8:20. There seemed like a pretty large (but not massive) crowd waiting for RD.

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    (this is the only picture of both my boys actually wearing their ears. I wish DS2 tolerated them better, but he wasn't having it)

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    DS2 grew restless quickly sitting in his stroller (a theme of this trip), and wanted to run around. We were standing near a small store to the right of the entrance. DS2 managed to run away from me and right behind the counter of the store. :headache: The CMs both laughed and helped me retrieve him, and even gave him a couple of Mickey stickers. I bought a bottle of apple juice to lure him back to the stroller. I think by time the boys finished the juice off, the show started.

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    The Welcome Show was so cute and I'm glad we saw it, then we all counted down and the crowd rushed into the park. We stayed near the back of the pack, as we were not running to 7DMT with everyone else ;)

    Finally, on Main Street! All the CM's were outside the shops saying good morning to everyone and all the Christmas decorations were up and everything was perfect!

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    (Okay, one teeny-tiny gripe here. Growing up in my house, Christmas did not start until after Thanksgiving. I did not plan this vacation as a "Christmas" vacation. I actually spent a few commutes listening to Disney theme park music. Then I finally am walking down Main Street and hear...... Winter Wonderland. The decorations are lovely and I didn't mind them, but I really missed the regular music. Okay, rant over!)

    Hello my beautiful castle, I'm finally here!

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    We headed up and around the castle to Fantasyland and our first ride - Mad Tea Party. Isn't that what everyone does RD for? :rolleyes:
    We had a FP for 7DMT later in the afternoon, so it wasn't a huge priority for us.

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    This ride was a walk-on with no wait and boys loved spinning in their teacup!

    Next up was Dumbo! We only had to wait for the ride before us to unload before we were flying.

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    From there, we kept walking through Fantasyland to the Barnstormer, which was another walk-on. I couldn't remember what the height limit was for this ride. DS2 had just measured 38 inches at his check up before we left, so I double checked he was tall enough with the CM at the entrance and she remarked "I think he could even ride the Mine Train!"

    Barnstormer was cute and fun and the boys enjoyed it.

    We had a FP for Peter Pan opening at 9:30, so we stopped at the bathrooms in the circus area and over to Peter Pan. I believe the Stand-by line was 20 minutes. We scanned our bands and waiting less than 5 minutes before we were flying through Neverland.

    After we exited, we saw the wait for It's a Small World was 5 minutes, so jumped in that line.

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    I think the wait was maybe more like 10 minutes. The kids enjoyed the ride, and while I know it's classic Disney, I could certainly live without it. Kind of a funny story here. We were seated on the second row of our boat. Seated in front of us was what appeared to be a mom and dad and daughter who was probably 8 or 9 years old. My kids really love animals so we spend most of the ride calling out the animal's names "Hi giraffe! Hi ostrich!", etc. (I mean, not a lot else to do on the ride) And almost any time we would point out something or even speak at all, the young girl in front of us would turn around and glare. In fact, the three of them were silent through the whole ride. I'm really not sure what her problem was. I didn't think we were being too obnoxious. And we're in Disney World! Have some fun! Apparently she wanted a very solemn Small World experience, and I apologize for disturbing the sanctity of her boat.

    One thing I was looking for in IASW was a Korean doll because I had never noticed one in all the pictures of the ride I had seen. Well here they are, wearing very cute Korean hanbok dresses.

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    We even found Korean in the goodbye signs (in the butterfly above Good Bye) even though we almost missed it since it's written phonetically, not in Korean characters.

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    When we exited the ride, the big cuckoo clock inside IASW flipped to 10:00. Five rides in the first hour, we seemed to be doing pretty good!

    Next we rode the carousel since DS1 loves carousels. This was another walk-on with zero wait.

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    By this time we really needed something to eat, so we went to Gaston's Tavern.

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    DH and the kids grabbed a table while I waited to order the food. We shared a cinnamon roll, ham and cheese stuffed pretzel, LeFou's Brew, plus a cup of coffee for me. I loved the cash registers lol

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    Do I have pictures of the food? I do not. DH and DS2 gobbled up the pretzel. DH really wanted another, but by that time the line was out the door and he didn't want to wait. We all shared the cinnamon roll and DS1 even licked the plate clean.

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    DH thought the LeFou's brew was too sweet, but the kids and I really liked it. The decor in here is just amazing. So true to the movie!

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    We had seen Gaston meeting outside, but when we finished eating, he had gone back in. We missed a lot of meets this day. We had seen the Fairy Godmother meeting near the carousel and when we tried to get in line, the CM said the line was cut off. Later we saw the Ugly Stepsisters meeting and same thing, weren't allowed in line. Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum were out meeting near the teacups but DS1 was scared of them.

    After Gaston's Tavern, we rode Journey of the Little Mermaid. I think the posted wait time was 15 minutes and I believe it ended up a bit shorter than that. This was a new ride to me and I just loved it!

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    Up Next: to Infinity and Beyond!
     
  14. Mich123

    Mich123 DIS Veteran

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    Great report! It's fun to see another view of the World at the same time we were there. Your kids are adorable!
     
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  15. ariane37

    ariane37 Dis veteran

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    Nice update! I like seeing the Citizens of Main St. in their Christmas outfits, we didn't catch the Welcome show in Nov. and I really regret it now that they've done away with doing it in front of the train station :sad1: I've always loved starting MK days with that show and the new opening show at the castle doesn't look too good.....
    I never knew the language in the butterfly was Korean (well, kind of I guess lol), so thank you! And um, how did I not know Gastons has a ham and cheese pretzel?!?! We get cinnamon rolls there all the time and I've never noticed that pretzel on the menu! I guess it was good if DH wanted another :)
     
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  16. cinderaimee

    cinderaimee Earning My Ears

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    Thank you for following along and commenting! I can't wait to read your report, I am sure your adult trip was much more relaxed than mine!

    Thanks! I didn't know the Welcome Show in front of the train station is gone!! :sad: I'm really glad we saw it now!

    I think the pretzel at Gaston's was a fairly new addition? Looks like this:
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  17. ariane37

    ariane37 Dis veteran

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    Yes I think you're right that it's new, even since our Thanksgiving trip. I'm going to look for it in May :thumbsup2
    Jan. 9th was the last day for the train station Welcome show unfortunately. Now they do one on the castle stage & let people onto Main St. about an hour before park opening; show is 5 or 10 mins before opening. Some like being on Main St. and not crowded at the entrance and while that sounds good, I watched a video of the new show and it's really lame IMO :rolleyes:
     

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