Meet our tour guide. She's two! March 2012 TR UPDATES 15 APRIL

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by ChildAtHeart82, Mar 25, 2012.

  1. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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  3. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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  4. therussells08

    therussells08 Roger, Simba One!

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    I'm here! I'm so excited for your TR!

    Your kids are adorable! I can't wait to read more! :thumbsup2
     
  5. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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    I am here! It was only an accident that I found it - I was looking for someone else's and found yours... So, you can skip answering the question about it in my TR if you'd like. LOL

    I am so happy you are doing a TR! I can't wait to read all about it.

    D~
     
  6. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    :welcome: Thank you! We've been blessed with really cute kids! :)

    :welcome: I'm glad you found it. I hope I can keep it interesting. :)
     
  7. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    Every trip starts with a somewhat boring day about getting to the airport or driving to Disney. The day is exciting for those travelling to Disney but it doesn't make for the most interesting TR post. This trip is no different. In fact, we took two days to get to Disney so that makes for twice the travel day awesomeness. ;)

    I also think it's fair to warn you that I didn't do a very good job this trip of taking photos. I had good moments and bad moments. The travel day was a bad moment.

    Now that we've covered that on to the travel excitement! After looking at several travel options we decided to drive to Denver (a 6 hour drive) and then fly to Orlando from there. I won't bore you with the numbers but even after factoring in gas and a hotel for the night it was still much cheaper to fly out of Denver. Rapid City is such an expensive airport.

    The day before our flight we got up early and finished packing the van. We woke up the kids and headed into town to drop off Rhino at the doggie resort. They love him there and always take great care of him. We stopped for a quick sit down breakfast and were on the road by 10am.

    The drive down was fairly uneventful. Driving through the Black Hills is a very scenic drive. I drove and DW sat between the two car seats to entertain the kids. DS slept almost the entire way and DD didn't start throwing fits about being trapped in the car until the final hour. Overall, quite a success. We stopped once for gas and Burger King. We hit Denver as evening traffic was starting to build but we beat the worst of it.

    We arrived at our hotel, an Aloft hotel about ten minutes from the airport. We had stayed in the area in a different hotel before and thought it would be a good option. Plus we found a really good Park & Fly rate. The hotel was nice and had a really modern feel. After unloading our overnight stuff we made a short trip down the road for Uno's Pizza for dinner. It's not our top choice for dinner in Denver but it was close to the hotel and we had a really early morning ahead of us.

    After dinner we tried to get some sleep. Before we knew it, morning had arrived, it was still dark, and it was time to catch the airport shuttle. I think I'll stop there before I overwhelm you with exciting narrative.

    Up next, we finally get to Disney! :yay:
     
  8. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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    And uneventful travel day is always a good one. :)

    D~
     
  9. therussells08

    therussells08 Roger, Simba One!

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    I'm sure you were grateful for that uneventful travel day, especially with two little ones! :thumbsup2

    Ugh, isn't regular food so boring, especially when you know you're so close to DISNEY FOOD?! :woohoo:
     
  10. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    I agree that an uneventful travel day is a good travel day. It just makes for boring trip report post. I'm still missing Disney food. Mmmm.
     
  11. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    No basketball on tonight so I need to take advantage and post an update. Off topic, but GO JAYHAWKS!! What a game last night. :) Now, back to the TR.

    We got up crazy early to get packed up and ready for the airport shuttle. We brought our bags down to the lobby and while DW watched the kids I brought the rest of our luggage in from the van. I wish I had taken a picture of how much luggage we had. We had one big rolling bag, a garment bag, two car seats in bags, two backpacks, a gym bag, and a double stroller in a carry bag. Oh, and Lucy had her own small rolling bag! After a short wait the airport shuttle arrived. The driver was very nice and loaded our luggage onto the shuttle.

    We got to the airport and were very happy to get most of our luggage checked and lighten our load. We tackled security with no big issues. I will say that I miss the days of going through the non-family line of security. We're still pretty efficient going through security but with all of our stuff and two kids it just takes time.

    We grabbed some bagel sandwiches from Einstein Bros. for breakfast. I almost remembered to take a picture before we started eating.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    DD was not very interested in her bagel. She quickly decided that she needed to explore the airport. Her favorite spots were going up and down the escalator and running the opposite direction on the moving walkway.

    We had a very smooth flight to Atlanta. DD smiled and talked to the people around us, read books, and watched part of Tangled on her DVD player. Here are a few blurry cell phone pics from the plane.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    We had a 90 minute layover in Atlanta which was perfect for us. We grabbed lunch at Panda Express which was our last non-Disney food of the trip. We got to the gate shortly before boarding. The flight to Orlando was not as smooth. It was turbulent for the whole flight. The pilots apologized but they could just not find any smooth air.

    Before long we landed in Orlando. We picked up our bags, loaded a cart with our metric ton of luggage and headed to the parking garage. We decided to rent a car this trip because we did not want to deal with Disney buses with two kids and a double stroller. After a lot of research on the Dis, we made an Emerald Aisle reservation through National. We knew we were only guaranteed a sedan but were really hoping for a minivan. With much anticipation we found the Emerald Aisle and...

    there were four minivans to choose from! We chose a black Town & Country and loaded up our stuff. It took a little while but we figured out how to fold some of the seats down and installed our car seats. Overall, it was a very smooth experience. We rolled out of the parking garage about an hour after we landed.

    Up next, we finally make it to Disney (really this time)!
     
  12. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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    Excellent update Dave!!

    THe kids are so precious!

    When we went to WDW in 2008, we also had a layover in Atlanta - both directions. Going down was fine, but on the way back flying from MCO to ATL... OMG - the air was so bad - everyone was screaming because we kept climbing and dropping. Not a fun experience at all.

    Awesome that you got a mini van - I am sure that having all that space was very helpful for you on this trip.

    Can't wait to hear about the rest of your trip! :)

    D~
     
  13. Lidian

    Lidian DIS Veteran

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    AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! (re: Hello humans!)

    I'm in! :goodvibes You have a lovely family! Can't wait to hear more! popcorn::

    P.S. You can blame D for my presence. Yep. Just blame her.
     
  14. archdandy

    archdandy DIS Veteran

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    Great report so far! I imagine it would be difficult to travel to Disney with two young children. I'm happy you guys got the van! I'm sure that relieved a little bit of stress! I can't wait to read the rest of your report.
     
  15. dara00

    dara00 DIS Veteran

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    go Jayhawks is right! :)

    We always do the emerald aisle when we travel and we've never had a problem getting a van or at least a bigger car. it's the best way to rent a car I think!
     
  16. bna16

    bna16 Mouseketeer

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    excited to follow along!
     
  17. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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    How come I always get the blame for everything around here?

    Poor Dave - didn't know that a chance meeting with a Diser in 50's PT would seal his fate on Disboards... popcorn::

    Wonder if he'll put a LGMH on his backpack on his next trip? :rolleyes1

    D~
     
  18. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    Thanks! Our kids are adorable.

    :welcome: Your response made me laugh! I will blame D.

    :welcome: Travelling with two kids was definitely more challenging, especially since DD is now walking and less tolerant of sitting still. The extra space was really nice. We knew we could squeeze into a sedan if we needed to but were glad we didn't have to.

    Rock Chalk! We were happy with the Emerald Aisle and really glad to get a van.

    :welcome:

    I wish I would have known earlier that I could just blame everything on you! I'll definitely wear my LGMH next time. ;)
     
  19. Lidian

    Lidian DIS Veteran

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    Well, he won't put one on now ... thanks for ruining it, D. :lmao::rotfl2:
     
  20. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    :rotfl:
     
  21. ChildAtHeart82

    ChildAtHeart82 DIS Veteran

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    Hi all! :) Basketball is over for another season. :sad1: Poor Jayhawks. Still, pretty good for a "rebuilding year." Now, on to the TR!

    I left off as we were departing the airport. This was our first time renting a car in Orlando so I had driven from the airport to Disney. It was a really simple and fairly quick drive. Still, after a really morning DD couldn't fight sleep any longer.

    [​IMG]

    Before long we saw this!

    [​IMG]

    Driving under the sign is always so exciting! :goodvibes

    It took us a little longer than I expected to get out of the airport and my arrival plan had us on a pretty tight schedule to begin with. Thus, we were running a little behind. First stop, Shades of Green for tickets. The CM at the ticket counter was very sweet and full of helpful advice. I smiled politely through her suggestions but since I had done a lot of research I knew exactly what I wanted. I walked away happily with a few of the military promo tickets and our AP vouchers.

    Next stop, CSR! We had made up some time, but were still behind. Luckily Sis had arrived earlier in the day and checked in for us. We drove by the main building and picked her up.

    After some quick hugs and hellos we were off to DTD! :) I love DTD but I absolutely dislike trying to find a parking spot here. I have really bad luck at the mall finding a parking spot and parking at DTD is like that but way worse. After circling the lot for what felt like an hour (in reality 5 minutes) we followed a family who was leaving to their spot and parked.

    Now as I said our ADR was at 6:30. We parked at about 6:20 and dinner was not our next stop. At this point I knew we were going to be late. I was just hoping that we wouldn't be too late. We quickly walked toward DTD and worked our way through the crowd to Guest Relations. We needed to activate the military tickets, get our AP's, and buy a Tables in Wonderland card. There was only one family in line in front of us but things always seem to take longer when you're in a hurry. The CM was very helpful and pretty soon we were walking away as Annual Pass holders!! :yay:

    It was now 6:30 and we still had to walk to our ADR. Considering the crowds we made good time. At 6:50 we checked in at the podium at Raglan Road! The CM was very kind about us being late but told us that there would probably be a bit longer wait. 20 minutes later our table was ready. Not too bad! :goodvibes

    We were seated at a table just off the main room with a decent view of the dancers. DD really enjoyed watching the dancers and clapping along wit the music.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    We ordered and our wonderful server brought us some bread. The bread was good but what made it delicious was the dip that came with it. It was a Guinness reduction made from Guinness, sugar, and olive oil.

    After a short wait, our meals arrived. We had:

    [​IMG]

    Me. This was the Beefy Murray. It was chunks of beef and gravy in a pastry crust. On the side were a potatoe and mushroom mix and an apple chutney. Our server warned me that this dish would be spicy. It had a lot of kick but I really liked it. I'm sorry for the weird angle. The lens on DW's camera made it very difficult to take pictures of something close up. Some nights we were good about taking pics from the right angle. Other nights not so much.

    [​IMG]

    DW had the chicken curry. It was pretty good. The curry was slightly sweet and not really spicy at all. The pieces of chicken were so big that it made it a little difficult to eat though.

    [​IMG]

    Sis ordered a burger. There's not a whole lot to say about this. She liked the fries and she cleaned her plate.

    [​IMG]

    DD had her favorite, macaroni and cheese. As you can see it also came with vegetables. DD is not too picky when it comes to mac and cheese and she enjoyed this version. It was pretty good. She managed to eat some of the vegetables as well.

    Finally, there was dessert. After reading about Raglan a lot on the Dis I knew exactly what I wanted.

    [​IMG]

    We split the bread pudding. It came with two sauces but I don't remember what they were. They were both delicious. I really like bread pudding and this one was great! I would come back to Raglan Road just for this.

    Overall, we really liked Raglan Road and will defnitely eat here again. The dancing is fun to watch and the food is really good.

    So, after several trips of saying I'm going to do something with all of our dining receipts, I actually did this trip. I plan to compare what we saved with Tables in Wonderland to how we would have done on the dining plan. This post is already long enough so I'll add all of the math geekery in a separate post. Other than add up how much we saved with TiW I haven't done any other math yet so I'm interested to see the results. I have a pretty good idea of what I'll find out, though.

    After dinner we headed back to our room. I confess that I didn't really take any pictures of our room. We had a really good location. We were in Cabanas 8A, room 8323. The room was close to parking and close to Bus Stop 4, which we didn't utilize. Our room was also a short walk to the main pool and the main building, 5 minutes to the pool and 10 minutes to the main building.

    After we unloaded the van we had one more thing to take care of. We made a quick shopping trip to Target to get diapers, snacks, and a few other essentials. After that, we went back to the room, unpacked and went to sleep. We were at Disney and we were happy. :goodvibes

    Up next, the Raglan Road dining comparsion and what park will we go to first?
     

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