It'll Be All Right -A May 2012 TR Closing Thought and PTR Link 8/12*

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by amazingact21, May 19, 2012.

  1. fairy8i8

    fairy8i8 Spread the Magic!

    May 5, 2008
    Definitely go for a long weekend! You are so lucky that Disney World is only 7 hours away, and trust me, when it's farther away, you will wish you had just taken all of those weekend trips, especially with APs!

    Don't bother with Seaworld if you aren't loving it. A short weekend should be a break, so only do the things you love! (Get lots of FP and enjoy some of the side shows and shops with AC if you want to stay in the parks during the afternoons, otherwise, go for a swim or nap and enjoy the park later that night!

    I'd say stay at a value resort. Maybe try a new one where you haven't stayed before because if you hate it, you are not there long, and you won't waste a longer trip in the same place. Also, theoretically, you could stretch your dollars so that you could do another Disney stay sooner. I'd go toward the end of July during the second value season, and then go again in Sept, or maybe October for the Halloween Party (or do both! and just make regular long weekends at Disney part of your life while you can)!

    The best part about planning a few long weekends is that it can relieve you from having to see/do everything each time. Focus on a park or two and a few memorable experiences. In the heat, skip commando style and maybe save it for the cooler months (then you could do one of those ultimate trips where you try to fit in everything in a park in a single day just to see if you can, and then relax the rest of the trip, but summer is too hot for that). Do a character meal or dinner show to immerse yourself in the Disney experience without having to fight long lines. Skip the meal plan on such a short trip, unless you get a discount on it. Have fun! (Even 2 days would be worth it, but just pick a few special things to do because otherwise you will be dead at the end).
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  3. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

    Nov 6, 2010
    Agreed! I love writing about arrivals, because I get to remember how excited I was to be back in WDW.

    I do remember in your past TRs how you mentioned that you used to make weekend trips to Orlando, and if my memory serves me correctly, they were always spoken about in a positive light.
    I think a quick trip would be kind of fun. We live in a HUGE tourist area, and it's nice when we can break away from the traffic and busy shops and get away for a bit.

    Haha, I think a lot of people feel that way about cruising. When we got back from ours, my father in-law was telling me he hated his first cruise, and how he's a gold member on two seperate lines! :rotfl:

    I could only imagine how much trouble I would get into if I lived as close as you do to WDW. :rotfl:

    I agree about Seaworld, though. I went so many times when I lived down there that I feel like I've seen it all before.

    Disney Cruises are nice, which completely goes against the update I did about in my last TR. :rotfl: Since it's been a few months and I've had time to forget the bad moments, I really miss the ship and the whole experience. So, you should totally try and do one next year. Alex and I are trying to get some friends to do one with us, but they are a teensy bit pricey, and most of our friends don't get a lot of time off work.

    It's going to be brutally hot down there this summer, so I agree with you there. But, Alex's philosophy is, we're so close that we'll either be sweating near home or sweating in Orlando. But this is coming from a guy who was stuck in the dessert for two summers on a deployment. I think he's grown immune to the heat. :rotfl2:

    I'd love to go back to the Food and Wine. So jealous you get to be there in November....Maybe I can convince Alex to take another weekend off then, too. :rolleyes1

    Stopping by the port was really nice. It's never too hot out with the sea breeze, and it's fun to see all the ships, especially when one is leaving port.

    3 nights does sound like a good amount of time for a quick trip. Otherwise, you end up feeling like you just drove to Orlando and back without really doing anything.

    Thanks for all the advice! I appreciate it. And you are completely right, since we were just at WDW, we wouldn't need to rush and do everything.:thumbsup2

    Thanks for much for all your tips! You made several really good points that I hadn't thought of yet.

    It never even crossed my mind to stay at a new value, just in case I don't really like it. I will through that out to DH tonight and see what he thinks...

    And I completely forgot about the rates changing at the end of July. Right now, we're waiting for DH's June work schedule to be released to see if this is even possible. If he doesn't get any time off, I can plan for early August and not feel so bad knowing we'll save a little on the room.

    I completely agree with you on the summer months being too hot to tour commando style. Heck, it was rough doing that at the beginning of May. Plus, taking it super slow and enjoying one or two things could be really fun.
  4. chocolateMinnie

    chocolateMinnie DIS Veteran

    Jul 1, 2008
    I would never say no to a trip to WDW - grab it do something different and have fun. Life's to short to miss out on a trip to the happiest place on earth however brief. :goodvibes:
  5. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

    Nov 6, 2010
    Love your reasoning. Makes perfect sense to me! I should know by the end of the week if the trip is a go or not. *fingers crossed*
  6. Moodyzblu

    Moodyzblu DIS Veteran

    Apr 29, 2006
    Joining in !! :goodvibes

    Going back to read ! :thumbsup2
  7. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

    Nov 6, 2010

    Welcome! Thanks for joining!
  8. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

    Nov 6, 2010
    Hello all! Hope everyone enjoyed their Memorial Day weekend. Alex worked pretty much all of it, but I didn’t mind too much, because my holiday weekend is coming Thursday afternoon. My aunt, cousin, and her 9 month old are coming to visit for 5 days. Laney, (the baby) is the cutest little girl I’ve ever seen, so I’m sure by Tuesday I’ll throw in a random picture of her in my next update. Hope you don’t mind.

    The weekend getaway hasn’t progressed very far. June’s work schedule hasn’t been released yet, so there’s still no word on whether or not we have the time to run down to Orlando. However, so long as we have 2 consecutive days off (which can be tricky with Alex) we are going to try and sneak a visit with Mickey in!

    But enough about topics that don’t matter. On to the trip report!

    May 4th Morning/Early Afternoon:

    As a quick recap, Alex and I spent a day or so at his parent’s house, where we woke up around 9 o’clock (remember we’d gone to a 2 hour movie at midnight. I think sleeping in until 9 is justifiable in this instance.) His dad offered to make us BLTs for brunch, which we gladly accepted.

    Except Alex’s was a BL, because he absolutely hates tomatoes.

    But his favorite condiment is ketchup….


    Thoughts to ponder over later…

    We stuck around the house for a few hours, visiting with family and trying to make it seem like we weren’t watching the clock constantly.

    I didn’t want to be downright rude and be like, “I love ya’ll, but I could be sitting in my Disney resort right now watching Stacy.”

    In actuality, I was really good. For readers of my past TRs, you know I’ve had a bit of an issue with leaving the family’s place on time, and it’s the only occasion where I have meltdowns.

    This time I was smart, though, and I learned from my past mistakes.

    I told Alex that so long as we leave by 2 to meet my mom at All Star Sports by 3, I’d be content. No rushing, no mad dash to the car, no freaking out when the minute hand passed a certain number on my watch.

    And the plan worked out perfectly. Alex and I got the car all packed up and chatted until his dad had to get ready for work. In the end, most of his relatives had to go into work fairly early, so by 11 o’clock it was easier to get on the road and get out of their hair.


    We said goodbye to Buster who was not a happy camper. :sad1:

    The only downside to a Disney vacation is having to leave your pets, in my opinion.

    But even that’s something that can be overcome.

    Alex and I were on the road shortly after 11. I mentioned that we should pick up something quick to eat as we got closer to Orlando, because we weren’t scheduled to eat again until dinner, and my one BLT was wearing off quickly.

    The subject was kind of forgotten, though, as we made it onto I-4 and drove towards our exit.

    Where were we headed?

    I didn’t want to check into our rooms before my mom arrived, so Alex and I quickly agreed upon our normal “first” of a Disney trip.

    Downtown Disney!


    I don’t know why, but of the 4 trips we’ve taken to WDW, all of them have led us to Downtown Disney. It’s partly because it’s a great place to kill time before checking in and partly because I like shopping.

    As we were getting closer to the marketplace, I had the first of many “DUH!” moments.

    DUH moments are a nice way of saying “Alicia’s an idiot.” You’d think with this being my 4th trip in two years, I’d have gotten all those kinks out of my vacations, but oh no.

    It seems like I have no shortness of “DUH!” in my bag of goodies.


    Oh well…they make for good stories.

    It dawned on me as we were pulling into the parking lot of DTD that we could just eat here. Where there’s Disney food. Where there’s amazing selections. Where there’s no choice of Firehouses or McDonald’s, the restaurants that cover our town back home.

    And, let me repeat…

    Where there’s Disney food!

    Hello, Alicia! Let’s think this over for a minute. Were you actually going to speed through a fast food drive through when we were headed to Disney.

    Sometimes I don’t think…

    I was just happy I’d thrown food into the back of my mind while we drove, otherwise I would have really kicked myself for making that disaster of a mistake.

    Surprisingly, DTD wasn’t too busy considering it was a Friday and lunchtime.

    Any remnants of my bacon and tomato from my brunch had long since disappeared, so as soon as we got inside the shopping area, I asked Alex where he wanted to eat.

    He, of course, deferred to his normal reply of “I don’t care.”


    This is why I plan our meals 6 months in advance, people.

    I thought over my choices. I was hungry, I didn’t want to spend an hour debating with Alex on where we should eat, and I wanted something quick.

    That left one option easily available.

    Earl of Sandwich.


    I was on the fence with this one. We ate at EoS last May, and I wasn’t entirely impressed with my meal. I can’t even remember what I ordered, except that the meat was dry and stringy, and the bread was kind of stale.

    However, so many of you DISboarders rave about this place, and Alex enjoyed the Club he chose, so I figured I’d give the place one more chance.

    The line to order was pretty long, but it was moving efficiently, and I didn’t mind waiting when I knew there was food at the end of the tunnel.

    Alex ordered the Club again (with no tomatoes, crazy man) and I went with the Hawaiian BBQ. I was feeling adventurous, and figured it couldn’t be any worse than what I’d received last go round.

    We split a fountain drink, and as we were paying, the CM noticed Alex’s military I.D. She thanked him and without asking, gave us a 10% discount off our meal. When we thanked her for it, she said, “I always do what I can to help our military.”

    When we moved on and were waiting for our food, Alex looked at the receipt and saw that the woman had actually given us an employee discount, which we thought was incredibly nice of her. Being military, we do get a lot of discounts, and because of that, we don’t try to score deals every time we go someplace unfamiliar. But we really appreciated the CM doing that for us, and it put the two of us in a great mood.

    That floundered a tad bit when we walked outside and saw every table being occupied. I didn’t really want to sit on the concrete ledge around a tree and eat my food, but I didn’t see much else of choice.

    I could already see the outcomes in my mind.

    A)I could pull out my BARBEQUE sandwich and, being the pro eater that I am, devour the meal without spilling a drop of sauce on my shirt while also enjoying the variety of tastes and flavors the meal was providing.

    B)The more realistic result- I could pull the wrapper away from the sandwich, watch as a pineapple began its descent into my lap, try and grab it with my free hand, and end up dripping a rain of sauce onto my lap.

    I wasn’t too keen on taking my chances with the barbeque, but I wasn’t seeing any way around it.

    In an attempt to prolong the inevitable messy eating experience, I took a picture or two of Alex with our food bag:


    Why this also happens to be the first photo I took at Downtown Disney I have no idea, but at least I finally remembered to pull the camera out and start taking pictures!

    Luckily, a family got up from one of the tables as I was putting the lens cap back on the camera, and I BOOKED it across the sidewalk to grab it.

    No way was I missing out on that.

    I did get a little peeved when I sat down, though, because directly to our left were this man and woman who had books out and were reading at the table. They didn’t have any cups of food or anything.

    Now, don’t get me wrong. I know it was warm out, and they were probably just trying to cool off and relax a bit after their meal, but at least leave the table open to a family that wants to eat.

    It frustrated me that I was about to sit out in the middle of the walkway and eat my food when there was a table not being used under the pavilion.

    I don’t know, call me whatever you want, but it bugged me.

    Mini-rant over….let me get on to the Sandwich.


    What did I think????

    Oh dear.

    It was DELICIOUS!:love:

    Earl of Sandwich completely redeemed itself with their Hawaiian Barbeque. It was the perfect blend of sweet and tangy, and the pineapples were really fresh, which was a big plus.

    Alex could tell I loved my meal, due to the fact that I finished before him.

    I what?! That doesn’t happen very often. In fact, this was only the second time while at Walt Disney World. (The first was at Sci Fi) It’s always a surprise when I do finish my meal first, and we talked about how I would definitely return to EoS if given the chance.

    Not wanting to take a table from someone who needed it, Alex went to get a refill on his drink while I ran (well, actually, I walked) to the restroom.

    When I returned, he showed me these coffee mugs he’d seen:


    Cute, but I had a mug in mind, and I wasn’t about to get distracted by adorable Epcot Mickeys.

    I have a friend from school who’s doing the CP (her username is BelleinPink) and so I figured the best thing to do after eating such a big lunch was to walk over to Goofy’s Candy Shop and see if she was working.

    We didn’t see her in the store, so we left and circled back to Disney’s Pin Traders. (I left her a comment on facebook telling her we’d stopped by, and as it turned out she was in the back. Wished we’d asked one of the other CMs, but oh well.)

    I always like to get most of my shopping done in the beginning of a trip, that way I can concentrate on all the other WDW sights and sounds, and I can peruse the shelves and not worry about not getting something I wanted.

    So, both Alex and I did some major shopping inside both Pin Traders and World of Disney. I bought a mystery pin set, a new lanyard, and a Simba pin for my AK collection. Alex bought a mystery pin set (maybe two sets, I don’t remember) and a couple of the special pins that were offered with purchases of 30 dollars or more. I also traded my first Vinylmation of the trip!

    I had this green and pink Cutester Vinyl that I couldn’t wait to get rid of; I picked number 3, since there were three of us on the trip and ended up with:


    He’s from the Occupation Collection, and I kind of liked him, but Alex wasn’t a fan, so I knew he’d be traded soon.

    By the time we walked out of World of Disney, it was 2pm. Don’t ask how we managed to kill two hours shopping around, but we did.

    Alex wanted to drive over to the other side of DTD and go to D-Street so that he could get some more Vinylmations.

    If it’s possible….he wasn’t burned out on Disney shopping yet.


    I was, that’s for sure. But, I knew he had way less time in Disney than I did, so I agreed, but I figured it was about time to call my mom and see where she was at.

    For the life of me, I can’t remember why, but Alex ended up calling my mom (I can’t even recall if he used his phone or mine) while we walked through the parking lot.

    She answered, I heard Alex ask how far away she was, and then Alex yelled, “You’re here?!”

    What? Whoa!


    I guess my mom had just pulled into the check-in parking lot of the resort when we called, and she was waiting on us to meet her there.

    More than a little surprised at the great time she’d made, we told her we’d be there in about 10 minutes, got in the car, and drove away from DTD.

    I couldn’t believe we were an hour ahead of schedule, but I wasn’t complaining. The sooner we met up with my mom, the sooner our Disney vacation officially began!

    It didn’t take us long to drive up to this:


    And see our sign:


    All Star Sports!

    I know I complained a lot in my PTR about how much I wish I could’ve gotten any All Star other than Sports, but I will admit, it was sort of nice returning to a place we already knew. The stress of figuring out where to park, where the lobby was, what road to take to get to our room was absent, and it was refreshing, being familiar with the property.

    I felt like I was returning to an old friend’s house. Not much has changed, but there’s still that tiny bit of the unfamiliar element floating around. Like, I know where the food court is, and I know the gift shop is right next to it, but I’ve never actually been to the shop before, so there’s a small chance I might get lost.

    Okay, okay, maybe I’m giving too much credit to a resort I have only stayed at once before, but that’s what I felt at the time.

    It took a minute to find my mom’s car, but that was because she had gotten a new vehicle two months before the trip, and I was still looking for her prior car.

    Where is it? I don’t see any red cars out here!
    Oh, wait, we’re looking for green! GREEN! Ah, there she is!

    I’d never met up with anyone at Disney, and it was kind of exciting. My mom and I began talking a mile a minute (a common trait with us) asking each other how the drive was, and how happy we were to finally be on vacation.


    Alex, wisely, walked ahead of us and just met us by the lobby doors.

    I helped my mom check into her room while Alex checked us in:


    (In case you were wondering…I made him take my planning binder. He thought it was ridiculous but didn’t complain, which I give him major credit for. After all, it takes a certain person to walk around with a 1” binder to check in.):rotfl2:

    When my mom was checking in, I asked if the two rooms were close by, and the CM said they were next door to each other, which made our lives a whole lot easier. I was very happy with ASSp for being so accommodating with us.

    As we got back into the cars to drive around to our building (I’ll go into the rest of our check-in later) I reflected on how much fun I’d already had in the 2 hours I’d been on Disney property.

    My mom had made excellent time, didn’t get lost at all, and seemed genuinely excited to get the ball rolling.

    And Alex and I got to spend some one-on-one time together before my mom arrived. I almost felt like we were being sneaky, taking some extra time just for ourselves, but as it turned out, it was a smart decision. We think beginning the trip with just each other was the perfect path to take. It gave us a few hours to dork out together, laugh at our inside Disney jokes, and be a married couple before it became a Mom/Daughter/Son(In-Law) Trip. And it got the 2-people mindset out of our system, that way my mom wouldn’t have to worry about feeling out of place.

    Not sure if that part even made sense, but I guess for anyone who’s used to traveling with just one other person and has ever added on new members will understand the enjoyment of getting some one-on-one time with your partner in crime.

    Up Next…Packet Pickup
  9. Joyciemc

    Joyciemc DIS Veteran

    Oct 29, 2002
    So glad your EoS meal was a hit! I really enjoy that place, but could totally see how stale bread would ruin it (since most of the meal *is* bread!)

    Nice job getting some couple time in before your mom arrived. Sounds like the morning went really smoothly!
  10. Nermel9

    Nermel9 DIS Veteran

    Mar 18, 2009
    Yay I'm glad you liked EoS this time! :banana: I'm obsessed with that place, everything I've had there has always been amazing! :cool1:

    Glad you guys got to do some things before you met up with your mom, sounds like everything was timed perfectly!

    Haha, I know what you mean about driving up to a resort you've stayed at's familiar, but there are still so many unknown things about it! I love going to a place I've stayed before...I like staying at new places, but when you do, there's always that "what if I hate this place" thought in the back of your mind! :rotfl:
  11. Moodyzblu

    Moodyzblu DIS Veteran

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sounds like you're off to a great start ! Glad you enjoyed your EOS .. I've yet to eat there !! (I feel like I've committed some sort of crime :lmao:). But I WILL try it at some point. :thumbsup2
  12. IheartDDuck

    IheartDDuck DIS Veteran

    Sep 20, 2009
    You definitely made a great choice in your sandwich at EoS. If you were underwhelmed before, I can honestly say there's no way to be underwhelmed with the Hawaiian BBQ. So tasty. You described it perfectly.

    Oh, and I also have duh moments all the time too. :lmao:
  13. marDgreen88

    marDgreen88 DIS Veteran

    Sep 3, 2011
    I'm joining in! So far I'm really enjoying it! I really like the way you write. I stayed at All Star Sports in December so it'll be cool to hear what you have to say about it! :goodvibes
  14. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

    May 8, 2005
    I've heard that sandwich is awesome! How great that you got an employee discount for being military. Very cool!

    Glad you mom made such great time and that you had a fun prevacation visit to DTD. Perfect start to your trip. :thumbsup2
  15. UGAFan0829

    UGAFan0829 DIS Veteran

    Dec 21, 2004
    I'm finally here, Alicia! I can't believe I missed such a great start, but thankfully I'm all caught up now!

    I have to comment on Alex's not liking tomatoes, but ketchup being his favorite condiment...I'm the same way. I can't stand fresh tomatoes but love ketchup, even like tomato soup and will eat fried green tomatoes. I just can't stand the texture of a fresh tomato! lol

    I'm so glad you were willing to give Earl another try and so happy that you loved your sammich! It looked really yummy!

    How wonderful that your Mom made it there so quickly! I can only imagine how excited you were!!

    I so can't wait to read more!
  16. teekathepony

    teekathepony DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2009
    Some DTD time, EOS, and an hour earlier than predicted! A great start to a Disney vacation!
  17. GraceMonica

    GraceMonica DIS Veteran

    Jul 31, 2011
    The Hawaiian BBQ is the only sammich I eat from EoS! Its SOOO so yummy!!!
  18. Elleshoodat

    Elleshoodat DIS Veteran

    Nov 27, 2010
    A fun start to your trip! I've only had Earl of Sandwich once and felt "meh" about it, but reading your experience makes me want to give it another try.

    Can't wait to read more!
  19. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

    Nov 6, 2010
    It did go really smoothly; I was kind of surprised that there were no hitches along the way.

    I know exactly what you mean about staying at a new resort. What if you hate it? Someone mentioned that I should try a new place on my weekend getaway, and I thought that was brilliant, since I'll only be there 2-3 days, and I won't have to suffer long if I dislike it.

    Haha, I know what you mean. There are a few places at WDW that I have yet to eat, and I feel like I'm being a bad DISer. :lmao: (Le Cellier and Ohana's are unknown restaurants to me.)
    Now that I've found something on the menu that I like, I would definitely recommend trying EoS out. What I liked about it was that we paid OOP for the meal, and it really wasn't more expensive than a fast food place back home. Normally, Disney food costs a pretty penny, but Earl wasn't bad. :thumbsup2

    Agreed. That Hawaiian BBQ is something to write home about. I can't believe I've never tried something like that before.

    I guess everyone has DUH moments, especially when traveling.:confused3

    Hi! Thanks for joining in! I read your TR (the "Yu guys are CMs right?" one) a week or so ago, but I don't think I commented. Whoops. It's really good though!

    This was our second stay at ASSp and surprisingly, I learned more about the place than I thought I would on a return visit.

    It was certainly that smoothest start to all our trips thus far, so Alex and I were really happy.
    The Hawaiian BBQ sounds a little odd, but it turned out really good. I think you have to be in the right mood for it, though, because it's not an ordinary taste. Alex took a bite of it and said it was good, but he didn't think he could eat an entire sandwich's worth, which I can understand.

    Ah, I'm so happy you're here, but I'm also a little sad for you, because that means you're back from your trip!:sad1:
    Which also made me realize I missed an update from you! I'm going back and reading it as soon as I'm done here!

    That tomato thing cracks me up...but I guess I can see where you're coming from. It justs makes me a tiny bit crazy that Alex hates tomatos, because it's a favorite of mine. Every summer my dad has tomato plants, and I probably eat a fresh tomato every other day. It's one of those foods I can't imagine others not liking. :rotfl:

    For sure! Luck was on our side that day.:thumbsup2

    I can see why. It's delicious and unique, which I like. I can get a club or a tuna melt at any of the sub shops locally, but I haven't seen many other places that offer the Hawaiian BBQ.

    I'd say go with something that's a little off the wall if you ever try EoS again. I think eating something so different from the norm sub is what makes the place as popular is it is.
  20. Goldeelox9

    Goldeelox9 Our Disney Cruise Line Wedding ~ November 4, 2008

    Sep 30, 2003
    I am loving this trip report. BUT how can you not love a Disney cruise? It hurts my heart hearing that! LOL It is my all time favorite vacation. Only 136 days until the longest cruise I have even been on - 14 nights!

    Please give it another try! LOL :lmao:
  21. marDgreen88

    marDgreen88 DIS Veteran

    Sep 3, 2011
    Thanks so much! :goodvibes

    Very nice! Can't wait to read more!

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