Look at all those Minnie hats!! A 3 generation Nov/Dec 2011 TR - updated March 23

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by ellajeansmom, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Still Day 2 - AK

    And back to the TR...when I last left off, we were on our way to ride EE. Well, some of us were! Nana and Grammy decided to pass on this one and chose to do some shopping instead (although I don't think they actually bought anything).

    The rest of us made our way to EE. Turns out we did not need our FPs – it was basically a walk-on, that rain really drove everyone away! This was new to all of us and we had a blast! Here’s the bootlegged pic

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    E & I considered going again but the girls weren’t up to it (they loved it but once a day was enough!) so we made our way back to the meeting place, stopping for a PP on the way

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    We found Nana and Grammy easily - just had to look for the polka dot hats! Turns out Grammy had been chatting with a DVC sales rep and I laughed at her because she had gone from "why do we need 4 days at the park, can't we just do 1 or 2 then we could take a longer cruise" to "it would be great to come back every year, this (DVC) would really pay for itself!". But no, she did not buy in on the spot :lmao:

    Anyways, we were going to leave the park but were interrupted by the Jingle Jungle parade...what could we do but watch and enjoy?! Here’s some pics

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    Once the parade was over we made our way to the front of the park, stopping for a PP along the way:

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    And so our time at AK came to an end, but the day was not over yet, stay tuned for our date with royalty :goodvibes

     
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  3. Queenofallthings

    Queenofallthings DIS Veteran

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    Great real life update! The pictures of the girls are gorgeous! My youngest niece dances and we missed her recital this year because we were ..... well you know where we were.

    Happy Belated Birthday:hug: I laughed out loud at your picture of you when you were 8 on the cannon at Edinburgh Castle....I have almost an identical picture!!! My dad was born and raised there so we were back and forth a lot to Scotland when we were growing up!! So cute!

     
  4. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Love the updates!!:thumbsup2

    Your girls look so pretty!!:goodvibes Happy Belated Birthday!! Aww...what a great surprise! Love the Disney theme!:thumbsup2

    Your photopass pictures turned out so cute!! I enjoyed looking at your pics from Mickey's Jingle Jungle parade. It looks like a fun parade!
     
  5. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for the birthday wishes :hug:
    I hope your nieces enjoyed their recital, my girls look forward to theirs and have fun even though it's a really long day!

    I knew you would appreciate the cake picture , remembering you had a Scottish connection... My dad ( Gramps) was born in a small village outside of Glasgow and moved to Canada when he was 2. That visit when I was 8 was his first time back.


    Thanks Angie :hug: it was a fun party, I had an idea that something was going on but the theming and guests were all a surprise!

    I was really happy with all our PP pictures (there are some fun ones coming on our MK day!) the only thing I wish I had done was have more with smaller groupings of us but as you may have seen on FB that's what editing is for!

    I do enjoy the parade at AK, it is themed really well and is just different from your typical parade :goodvibes
     
  6. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 - Evening

    After a fun-filled day at AK we returned to our rooms where we changed and freshened up for dinner – we had a reservation at 1900 Park Fare! It was drizzling rain again when we arrived at the GF so E kindly dropped us at the door while he went to park. We took in the loveliness of the lobby and the gingerbread house while waiting for him and the girls hammed it up for the camera:

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    I had of course seen pictures of the gingerbread house but the real thing is amazing!

    Gramps made himself at home.

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    E arrived and we checked in for our dinner, we only waited a few minutes until they were ready to take our picture and showed us to our seats.
    I’ve seen mixed reviews of the food here, and reviews that the restaurant was loud. We found the food just fine considering it’s a buffet, not a signature restaurant, and I think we had a good location noise-wise. We were in a corner across from the buffet just before the smaller room to the back, so we were still in the middle of the action but the noise wasn’t surrounding us.

    First to meet us was Prince Charming. I had worried before the trip that Ella would think she was too old for the whole character thing, but considering the look on her face here I had no reason to worry!


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    I almost missed him but got back in time for a pic.

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    The ladies agreed that he was a very nice looking Prince!

    Cinderella followed, she was lovely.

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    Lady Tremaine was next, she commented on how lucky the girls were but I can’t remember why - I think it had something to do with having both grandmothers with us. Grammy and Nana decided they should be in on the pics with her.

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    Moving on to the table beside us LT started asking a little boy how old he was and would he be interested in one of her daughters!

    Anastasia treated us to her trademark smile…she seemed confused as to why we were telling Jean to stop smiling like her!

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    We told her that her mother had been trying to set her up with the boy at the next table so when she moved over there she asked him how many castles he had :rotfl2:

    Drizella was our last visitor. She arrived just as the Prince and Cinderella were making a reappearance after a short break,

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    so she said to Ella and Jean to watch this and she started waving her arms in the air and calling the Prince loudly. He acknowledged her with a slight wave and she gushed to the girls "Did you see that? He waved at me!!"

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    All in all it was a very enjoyable dinner. The grandparents commented that there several tables, especially those only seating two, that were adults only. They thought it was great that adults could come and enjoy whether they had kids with them or not. Walking out to the lobby after dinner we noticed the PP photographer was out by the tree with only a short line so we opted to have some shots taken.

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    As we headed out to the car, er truck rather, Grammy’s medication was wearing off and her eyes were watering again. I don’t remember now whether the GPS was not helpful in finding a pharmacy or whether we did not have the GPS for some reason, anyways we ended up driving around for quite a bit and finally found somewhere for Grammy to get more meds. By the time we got back to Casita 5 it was almost 9:00 and Jean was done for the night

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    ...she tends to talk non-stop as she gets tired and you know when she stops suddenly, sometimes mid-sentence, that she's fallen asleep!

    The rest of us were not far behind as we wanted plenty of rest before our Epcot day :)
     
  7. Queenofallthings

    Queenofallthings DIS Veteran

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    What great pictures! I really wish we could afford to go twice a year...I know that might sound bad but I just love summer where it's relaxing and we get our pool time, but Christmas time is so spectacular there....

    The Gingerbread House at the GF is really something isn't it!

    The group pictures are so nice....something wonderful to look back on in years to come!
     
  8. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    I completely understand what you mean about more than once a year, there's something different to see with each season, I'm not sure if we will go at Christmas time again so I wanted to see as many of the resort decorations as possible :lovestruc On the other hand the girls were disappointed that we only got swimming 2 of the days.

    Pictures do not do th GF lobby justice, let alone the tree and gingerbread house.

    The PP pics by the tree turned out very nicely, I think, so I was glad we stopped to have them taken :goodvibes
     
  9. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Love your pictures at the GF!! It really makes me want to go at Christmas time!! So beautiful!

    Glad you enjoyed your dinner!! What a cute picture with Lady Tremaine!

    Your group photopass picture turned out great!!:goodvibes

    Can't wait for more!!
     
  10. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Hi Angie, welcome back! I saw you started your TR, can't wait to hear about your trip!

    The GF really is beautiful, I'm sure it is normally but even more so at Christmas :goodvibes

    Yes, we definitely enjoyed the dinner, it was fun to see Nana and Grammy getting into the character meetings!

    Next update coming right up :)
     
  11. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Day 3 – Tues. Nov. 29

    This was our Epcot day. It would be a full day so I didn’t insist on being there for rope drop but didn’t want to be too late either :rolleyes1 I think we were on our way by shortly after 9:00.

    After entering the park, we stopped for some photo ops when we saw the Bambi topiary since Bambi is Nana’s favourite Disney movie.

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    Gramps tried to get the “hold SE in your hands” shot but it didn’t quite work

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    We made our way towards the Land where we dropped E off to collect some Soarin’ FPs and continued on to wait for him outside of the Seas. We passed the time with some more picture taking:

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    Nana tried to get a video of the talking seagulls but was stymied…every time they started her camera would have turned off and they stopped by the time she got it turned on and set!

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    E re-joined us and we made our way into the Sea and hopped on some clam shells. The ride stopped for a few minutes in the middle but we were soon on our way. When getting off we checked that everyone had their hats since Ella had left her hat on this attraction on our last trip. We moved on to the waiting area to have a chat with Crush. Ella again managed to get some interesting fishy pics:

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    We had a fun time with Crush, Dory dropped by as well.

    We then went up to the dolphin viewing area. They were finishing up a demonstration and then we watched them a bit longer -apparently none of us took any pictures here. Grammy wanted to get to Mouse Gear before noon as we had 20% coupons from one of our meals. Before shopping we took a ride through time on SE which we all enjoyed. I went over to TT to get some more FPs before meeting up with everyone at Mouse Gears. I bought a pair of Mickey earrings and the girls bought some pins. E debated over an Agent P tshirt but decided to hold off for now.

    Shopping complete for the time being we were excited to go on Soarin’! We were a little concerned about both Grammy (fear of heights) and Gramps (nausea on virtual rides) but we described it to them as best as we could and they were both game to try. Here is some of us headed down the stairs

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    We lucked out and were assigned to the front row - as we were both times we rode in 2009 :banana: We had a fabulous tour of California… Gramps didn’t have any issues and would have gone on again if there hadn’t been a 50 minute standby wait. Grammy thought it was neat but would not be trying it again, she was clenching the armrests and was as far back in her seat as you can possibly get the whole time :scared1:

    By this time we were quite hungry for lunch so chose SS as it was right there. I had the grilled vegetable flat bread sandwhich and I believe Grammy used a bunch of snack credits to get a variety of little things. Ufortunately I don't remember what everyone else had but once again high points were given out all around for good-tasting, not a hamburger, lunch :thumbsup2

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    Next time...we are given an assignment to save the world!
     
  12. Tara2004

    Tara2004 Mouseketeer

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    That was my fav' hat. I loved trying on hat at disney, but lost what to do with them when you get home :rotfl2:
     
  13. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Sounds like a fun morning!:thumbsup2

    Yay for getting the front row on Soarin'!! :cool1: Poor Grammy. It can be a little intense though. At least she gave it a try.:thumbsup2
     
  14. GrammyJudy

    GrammyJudy DIS Veteran

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    I just found your TR and since I ama grammy and we go to WDW as 3 generations I have really enjoyed reading. Your girls are adorable...I have 2 grandsons.
     
  15. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Welcome! Yes we loved our hats...I'm not sure that we all would have ended up with the same ones if Ella had chosen something different to start with :) we did all wear them on a beach vacation in South Carolina in March, but I must admit they haven't had a lot of use since then.

    We were very excited to get first row again, especially when it would be the grandparents' first time! Grammy was a great sport to try everything, there is picture coming up on TT that gives an idea of what she looked like the whole time on Soarin':rolleyes1

    Welcome and thanks for commenting! Thank you, and your grandsons are lucky to have a Grammy that takes them to WDW. I know for some families the 3 generation touring doesn't work very well but we are very fortunate that we travel well together :

    Well, we are now at the cottage for a week of holidays, I had hoped to do another update before we left but that didn't quite happen :rolleyes1 Once we are home I will get back to this TR and maybe include some pics of cottage fun!
     
  16. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    We are home from a wonderful week at the cottage and as promised here are some pics:

    A friend of Ella's and her dad came for a couple of days and the two dads and three girls ventured on a day-long canoe trip - they left at 9am and didn't get back until 6pm. The trip included 6 portages and apparently the girls managed just fine with no complaining. Here is Ella and her friend bringing over a canoe from E's uncle's dock, you can see our dog Nala following behind in the water!

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    Here they are heading out:

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    Some pics from the journey:

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    Nala and I spent the afternoon relaxing on the dock, well I was relaxing reading my book while Nala kept a close watch for the returning adventurers!

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    The next day we visited St. Marie-Among-the-Hurons, a historical site about an hour from the cottage. This re-created, interpretive museum tells the story of the Jesuit missionaries who established a village here in the 1640's.

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    The girls, including Ella's friend, try their hand at writing with a quill pen:

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    E took a turn trying out a pump drill

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    and admired the carpentry of the cabinets

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    We also stopped to see the marine railway, we thought at first we weren't going to see it in action as there were no boats travelling between the two lakes (this was a weekday, it gets really busy on the weekend), but a boat did come along:

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    The rest of the week was mostly spent like this:

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    To top of the week, the girls participated in our lake's annual regatta and were very successful! Ella won 1st in single canoe, 3rd in double canoe, 1st in 4-man canoe, and took the trophy for overall girl in her age division. Jean won 1st in single canoe. Here they are showing off their hardware with a very proud Grammy in the background:

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    Now, once again, a return to the WDW TR! It is Day 3 - Epcot and we have just finished lunch...

    Ella’s must do for Epcot was to do a KP mission. So we searched out a recruitment kiosk and asked for an assignment. Our assignment took us to Japan where we tracked down the evil-doers and helped save the world. On the way we passed Mary Poppins

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    and then got to business:

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    It was a great experience, there was one task that we had trouble finding – but it was a fun way to explore and discover some of the nooks and crannies of the Japan pavilion.

    After completing our mission we listened to the drummers finish their set

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    We decided we would squeeze in TT before our afternoon break so headed back in that direction, stopping to admire the beautiful Christmas tree

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    continued in next post...

     
  17. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Heading through the queue of TT, oops, I don't think Gramps was expecting me to turn around and take a picture!

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    We warned the grandparents that TT went fast but we forgot about the little hill - Nana doesn’t do well with the hills. Happily she survived and thought it was quite a fun ride!

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    Grammy wasn't as thrilled, this is also how she looked throughout Soarin' :scared:

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    On the way out of the park we stopped for a PP. We did the first shots with just E, the girls and I as we had done pics in the same spot on our 2009 trip

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    Then the grandparents joined in

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    Back at the rooms we all had a rest, mainly watching TV – the girls had hoped to go swimming but the wind had picked up a bit and it was a little chilly even for my Canadian swim-like-fish daughters so we vetoed that.

    Rested and refreshed we returned to Epcot and made our way around the world to Morocco. We had reservations at Restaurant Marakesh and we were a bit early but were seated right away. The inside of the restaurant is beautiful, it really does feel like you are in a different world.

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    Our server was great, he explained the menu, answered our questions, gave recommendations, joked with us at various times throughout the meal and wrote out Ella and Jean’s names in Arabic – he told us the dialect but we didn’t write it down so of course none of us can remember what it was called.
    The food was wonderful, the grandparents all ordered the Royal Feast (when on the dining plan they add on the cost of the salad to your bill), I had shishkebobs, and E had roast chicken. The platter for the Royal Feast was huge – our server had described it as a sample of each of the 3 items listed but they didn’t look like samples to us!

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    Somehow most of the food disappeared! The belly dancer came out part way through dinner and was very nice entertainment as well.

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    We had lots of time to do some touring before staking out a spot for Illuminations. Grammy really wanted to see the Canada pavilion, Nana and I wanted to see the Germany and Italy pavilions so we decided to split up and rendez-vous at the bridge between UK and France. E and Amanda came with Nana and I while Ella and Gramps went with Grammy. They enjoyed both the movie in Canada and in France.

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    The rest of us explored the stores of Morocco then moving on, we listened in on the CP as we went by the USA, admired the fountain in Italy, and enjoyed the miniature village in Germany.

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    We poked around in the shops where Jean was fascinated by the jewelry maker.

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    I was very tempted to buy one of these ornaments but I didn’t think I would get it home in one piece so decided to pass.

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    Even though we had had an enormous dinner, we had snack credits to use and I knew just what to get to munch on while waiting for Illuminations. Securing 2 small bags of caramel corn from the Karamell-Kuche we headed back to our designated meeting area stopping for a couple of pics on the way

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    We had a bit of trouble meeting up, which was my fault – I had said lets meet on the first bridge going from France to UK, which is where they waited but they weren’t there yet when we first walked by, they were still in watching Impressions. We found a great spot in the center of the larger, second bridge going to the UK so decided to plant ourselves there. Nana, Jean and I waited while E roamed back and forth trying to find the others. He did eventually find them with lots of time left before the show.

    The folks in front of us were kind enough to stay sitting throughout the show so we had a wonderful view. It was somewhat new to us because on our 2009 trip the people in front us all stood up and we could barely see anything – in retrospect it had not been a good spot to pick. This was a chilly evening but Illuminations was wonderful and the grandparents agreed that it was a very moving show (and the caramel corn was divine!).

    We joined the masses exiting the park and settled into our beds in preparation for our last full day together at MK.

     
  18. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Beautiful pictures from your week at the cottage.:goodvibes It looks like you had a great time! Yay for both of the girls winning 1st in single canoe at the regatta!:yay:

    Glad the grandparents enjoyed Test Track!:thumbsup2 Poor Grammy...she doesn't seem to be enjoying it quite as much.:sad2:

    Your photopass pictures turned out great!:thumbsup2

    We've never eaten in Morocco before. Your food looks very yummy. We may have to give it a try.

    Caramel popcorn and Illuminations! It sounds like a perfect night to me!:cloud9:
     
  19. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    Hi Angie, yes we had a great week at the cottage, just the right mix of relaxing and fun activities! The girls were very proud of their medals and we are proud of them too :)

    We really enjoyed RM from the decor to the service to the food :thumbsup2 and you know how yummy that caramel popcorn is, a perfect snack for Illuminations!
     
  20. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    I have been very neglectful of this TR, I really don't know where the month of August has disappeared to! I did try to get a post done last week, was almost ready to hit go and our internet connection crashed :confused: While things are going to be getting busy around here as the girls get back to school next week and their hockey and dance start up again, it will be a structured busy so hopefully I can keep this moving along!

    Last time we had enjoyed a wonderful day at Epcot and had a good night's sleep to prepare us for our MK day which was also our last day all together. So here we go...

    Wed. Nov. 30 - Day 4 - MK

    We had tickets for MVMCP this evening so I wanted the girls, and Nana, to sleep in and rest as long as possible this morning. I, however, was on a mission to be at MK for the opening show. Grammy was awake as well so she decided to join me. We walked out to the bus stop and after a longer wait than I expected in the morning the MK bus finally came. This was Grammy’s first experience with the Disney buses and she thought it was very efficient. We were dropped off nice and close and were through the gates with about 5 minutes to spare. We were both so glad that we made a point to do this as we both enjoyed it, here are the pics

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    Having been properly welcomed we headed under the train station. I took a quick pic of the castle

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    and since we both still had some shopping to do we figured it made sense to take our time at the Emporium while the crowds were low (I think for most of the time we were the only ones in the store!). We spent at least 45 minutes in there but we were successful, Grammy got a couple of t-shirts for E’s dad, I got a new fleece (coming up in pics later on) and picked up pj’s for my nephew and some t-shirts for my cousin’s kids.

    Our shopping completed (well, mine anyways) we decided to just wander and enjoy the park which was still very empty – I didn’t think to take any pics, we just enjoyed. We walked up through Fantasyland and poked in the stores there (Grammy had one more t-shirt she wanted to get that she had seen in Mouse Gears and was regretting not buying). It was very tempting to go on some attractions with almost no wait times but I would have felt guilty going on without the girls so we made our way through Liberty Square and Frontierland and as we headed into Adventureland I had a text from E that they were about to board the monorail. We made our way back to the front of the park and I grabbed a seat on the bench in front of the City Hall to wait while Grammy went back into the Emporium. While I was waiting I took the following pics of folks walking by:

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    I finally spotted some Minnie hats coming out from under the train station and waved them down. There was definitely a steady stream of people coming into the park as it was now around 10:30! One of the top things on my list for Nana to do was have a pic with Santa – she loves Christmas and always cries when she sees Santa in parades so I felt this was a must. Santa was set up right there beside City Hall so we got in line (minus Gramps and E). The timing was great as we were the last group allowed in line before Santa would be taking an early lunch. The CM working the line chatted away to us and even ran over to City Hall to get ‘Celebrating’ buttons for us when we told him there wasn’t a particular reason for our trip just enjoying family time together. We took some pics while waiting in line

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    (I used this one for our Christmas cards once we got home!)

    We heard and kind of saw the start of the Celebrate mini-parade

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    Finally it was our turn to meet Santa

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    He asked the girls what they wanted for Christmas, commented on how lucky they were to have 2 grandma’s with them, and gave a little speech about how the greatest gift was love (Nana was almost in tears) and gave us all candy canes! More pics:

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    This was a great pic so I played with the zoom a bit:

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    continued in next post...
     
  21. ellajeansmom

    ellajeansmom Mouseketeer

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    We found Gramps and E and headed up Main Street, stopping for a quick pic on E’s phone that we sent home to some friends – a wish you were here type of thing,

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    and then continued on to Adventureland to take a Jungle Cruise

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    Oops, my wave cut Grammy out of the picture, let's try that again!

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    Now Grammy isn't looking, oh well!

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    We had a great driver and the grandparents especially laughed at all the jokes.

    Next we went on a darker cruise with some rowdy pirates!

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    Personally I enjoyed Pirates much more this time having seen the movie, it made more sense to me which is odd since the movie is based on the attraction not the other way around!

    We made our way over to Frontierland hoping for a wild ride but Thunder Mountain was down – we grabbed FPs for later. We settled instead for a spooky ride, but not before enjoying the queue area

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    HM was new for us and we thought it was good fun. By this point we were hungry and my touring plan had worked well because of course we were right in front of CHH which is where I wanted to have lunch! E wanted another turkey leg so he went off to get that while the rest of us went in to order. Ella and I both had fried shrimp, Jean had mac & cheese, Nana had tuna, Grammy had salad and Gramps had fish and shrimp. E joined us with his turkey leg and we enjoyed another tasty meal

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    I had planned to get a table upstairs hopefully by a window but Gramps saw this table and grabbed it and I didn’t want to cause confusion so we stayed there.

    After lunch we decided we had time for one more attraction before heading back out of the park – our dinner reservations were for 5:30 and we wanted to be sure to be well rested before the party. Splash Mountain seemed the logical choice because we were not going to want to ride it in the cool night air and this way if we got soaked we were headed straight “home” anyways. All 3 grandparents decided to opt out of this one so it was just the 4 of us. Ella was very excited as this was another attraction that she had passed on last time and was determined to conquer. Unfortunately it was not to be. We’d only been in line a few minutes (with a 10 minute posted wait) when they announced there was a temporary closure. We waited it out for another 5-10 minutes but nothing changed so we decided to pass. When we got back out in front we could see people in a log that was stopped at the top of the hill – so glad we were not them! Ella was disappointed but we told her that this time it was through no fault of her own and she was in the line so that is close enough, from a bravery point of view.

    There wasn’t really time to try anything else so we headed back towards Main Street. We did stop for some PPs along the way, first at the side of the castle

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    Then I took this one

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    Then we stopped at a PP on Main Street. I asked him if he could do something fun with us and he said sure, placed us all very carefully, and this is what we got:

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    Poor E was so embarrassed but he knew better than to try to resist! Then the PP arranged us again and got my fave shot:

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    We did finally then leave the park, I had my only monorail ride of the trip and we were soon back at CS with the girls' stuffies waiting for us:

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    Next time...we have dinner with our friends from the Hundred Acre Woods and enjoy some Christmas magic!
     

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