Our Disneymoon PTR + Wedding TR w/ pics - I'm back! (TR link and POP review 9/7)

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by ronnmel, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. NikkiLovesWDW!

    NikkiLovesWDW! "Are you seeing an increase in lateral forces?" "S

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    I think in my very first post in this TR I said you would be upgrading to a moderate on this trip!! I just knew it!

    Well, you just read my TR with info on POR. I've stayed there more than any other disney resort and it's so beautiful and perfect for a honeymoon!

    Yeah, it's super hot here too but it's supposed to drop more than 20 degrees by the weekend. We have AC but it didn't seem to be working because it was soooo hot working in my classroom today! First day with kids next Tuesday.....
     
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  3. starann

    starann In having children, I have lost my mind, but found

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    Joining in........I'm a sucker for a wedding..........and a trip to WDW!!!!
     
  4. inkedupmomma

    inkedupmomma If you live to be a 100, I hope to live to be 100

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    I LOVE your wedding sandals! where did you get them!! I am a sucker for stars! Everything looks lovely for your wedding! I can't wait to plan my own wedding some day!
     
  5. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Yes, you did say I would be upgrading. :rotfl: What will make it more likely is if we somehow get an extra 10 people booked for our wedding (we have 6-8 who said they would), then we get one of our trip almost free. :wizard:
    What can you tell me about POR? What are the differences between POR and POFQ?

    Yay! Another reader! Welcome. :goodvibes

    Thanks! I love them too! I got them at a store called Little Burgundy last spring, but saw them in several other stores over the summer. They are from the Ipanema (sp?) collection by Gisele Bundchen, so I'm sure you can find them online. They are available in several color.

    ETA. Here is one website selling them: http://www.ipanemaflipflops.co.uk/gisele.html



    I'll try to write a new update tonight. Not making any promises though, as I need to write my homework sheets for my students.
     
  6. NikkiLovesWDW!

    NikkiLovesWDW! "Are you seeing an increase in lateral forces?" "S

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    Told you! That would be great if you could get a few more people to help save you some money!

    I've never stayed at POFQ but my sister is on her way there AS WE SPEAK!

    I know that POFQ is much smaller than POR. The theme is similar (south-like) but there is definitely some differences in the architecture. We took the boat to DTD from POR and passed POFQ on the way and the building are very beautiful. I definitely want to try POFQ sometime soon. I don't think you could go wrong with either.
     
  7. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Sorry! I haven't been very good at updating this PTR in the last month. In my defense though, it was the beginning of the school year and it has been crazy busy. I was also so exhausted the first few weeks! Things are finally starting to settle a bit now... :upsidedow


    First, a bit of news for my PTR. DH and I have been spending a LOT of times talking Disney lately. Several nights we'd go to bed early and just talk Disney for an hour before going to sleep. I LOVE that I can share my Disney passion with him. :lovestruc One night he was looking at an Epcot map and mentioned how much he loved the Seas pavillion, how serene and peaceful it was in there. Well the next I receive an email from him. Guess what he was doing at work? Thinking about Disney, of course! :rotfl:

    He says that we should add a third table-service restaurant to our list, Coral Reef. Though he does like fish, he says he mainly wants to go there for the atmosphere, and how cool it must be to eat looking at the giant aquarium. I agreed. :thumbsup2


    Now, some wedding news. :goodvibes

    I got a call about two weeks ago that my dress has FINALLY arrived at the store. I went it today with my two best friends to try it on. I wanted them to see it first, as they would have been my maid of honor/bridesmaid, but can't make it to Cuba due to financial reason. :sad1:

    I took away the pictures I had posted in case future DH comes by this thread (and he does sometimes). If you want to see it you can PM me. :)
     
  8. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Mega Waves, Date Night, and FastPass Baby!


    Day 1 - Bad buffet and nice outlets

    Last time I wrote I talked about the booking of the trip. Now let's get to Florida!

    As I had mentioned before, DH and DD were going to Florida with DH's parents. Because I booked my trip several months after them, I was on a different flight. The second I stepped out of the airport I could recognize the Florida smell. A little sweet, like flowers, and a little salty, from the ocean. Mmmm! I arrived there a few hours after them, so DH and his dad came back to pick me up while DD and her grandma were waiting for the time-share room to be ready. They were staying at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club. It looked so NICE and luxurious! It was like a mini condo. Granite counter tops for the kitchen part, big master bedroom with bath, separate bathroom, sleeper couch, and an enclosed balcony protected from bugs. There was a lake with fountains in the middle of the grounds, and a couple of pools.
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    We drove up International Drive to this buffet place called Ponderosa. The food was BAD. So bland and tasteless, and very little choice. Blah. We took pictures, but I can't find them. Not worth it anyway.

    By the time we came back it was already getting late, and we had an early start the next day. We wanted to check in to CBR early enough to make it to rope drop! So we left DD with her grandparents and walked next door to the Orlando Premium Outlet. I loved the feeling of being in a mall, but with no roof. The air was warm, but not too hot. We walked around for a bit and did some window shopping. On our way back to the room we stopped by the hotel bar for a drink. Relaxing! We got our first taste of Florida rain though, so we quickly headed back and turned in for the night.

    Up next, checking in to Walt Disney World.
    :cloud9:
    Also, will the touring plans work at... Magical Kingdom? :wizard:
     
  9. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Disclaimer : I have blurred the face of my step-daughter as I don't know if her mom is ok with having her picture posted here.


    Mega Waves, Date Night, and FastPass Baby!


    Day 2 - Our real first day at WDW - Rope drop at Magical Kingdom? -

    I left you as we went to bed on our first night in Orlando, at DH's parents' time-share hotel.

    We got up very early that day, quickly got ready, and had DH's parents drive us to Caribbean Beach Resort.

    We are finally here!
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    Custom house at CBR
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    Check-in was fast. We did the online check in, very efficient. Though to be fair, we were so early (around 7am) that there were hardly anybody there. Of course our room was not ready, so we took the resort internal bus to Old Port Royal to eat breakfast:
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    Soon we were on our first real Disney bus and off to our very first park!
    As we were walking to the entrance of the park, DH filmed his daughter to get her first impressions. She happily said "So here we are, going to Magical Kingdom!" Oops, is there a new park? :laughing:
    We really were at Animal Kingdom, here is the proof, with Ron gracefully showing us where you are supposed to take your picture:
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    We were there early enough and caught a glimpse of the Rope Drop show:
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    Soon we were on our way. Armed with the touring plans I had carefully planned and replanned all summer :-)rotfl:), we were strolling along with everybody else. First destination, fastpasses for Expedition Everest!
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    Then on to our very first ride of the trip, Primeval Whirl. The wait was very minimal, as would be the case for us all day. We all had a lot of fun on this ride.
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    Our next destination was Dinosaur. We all thought it was amazing, even DD. She did think it was too loud at times though. No picture for this, but I do have pictures of us goofing around in the store after exiting.
    Isn't Ron cute? princess:
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    Or maybe drunk?pirate:
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    Grrr!
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    After that we walked over to Kali River Rapid to get another set of FP. We planned n this being the last ride of the day, as we knew we'd be getting soaked.

    We walked towards Africa, taking a few Tree of Life pictures along the way:
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    We didn't visit Africa at all this time (a must on our Disneymoon!) and instead walked back to Discovery Island. We made a quick left and took the path that takes you behind the ToL. We saw some parrots and a very old turtle:
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    We also stopped a CM walking by to take one of our only family picture of the trip:
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    Continued in next post

     
  10. *Meagan*

    *Meagan* DIS Veteran

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    OoO love your dress!!! and I vote No necklace at all, it takes away from the dress and you.

    Are you going to do a planning thread on BDW?
    You can find mine on there under "Meag Tuck's planning thread" that was one of my fave parts!

    OoO sooo excited for you!
     
  11. 2BoysMom

    2BoysMom Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver t

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    I wanted to pop on and let you know that I think your dress is beautiful, and I'm glad that I got a glimpse of it before you pull it off again.

    Since you are getting married in Cuba, my vote was for you to have some color around your neck. It might go nice with the tropical flavor of Cuba.

    If you need colorful necklace inspiration, you can't go wrong with reading Lurky Loo's wedding PTR and TR. She is the QUEEN of Disney weddings and her gown and jewelry for her wedding were just spectacular (and she is super funny to boot).

    Here is her link: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1726902

    Wishing you the best!
     
  12. kate_wdw

    kate_wdw DIS Veteran

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    Just wanted to let you know that I'm enjoying your TR and looking forward to hearing about the rest of your trip!
     
  13. inkedupmomma

    inkedupmomma If you live to be a 100, I hope to live to be 100

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    your dress is gorgeous! I love love loveee i t!
     
  14. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Welcome to all the new readers!! :goodvibes

    Oh! I had not made the connection! I saw your wedding pictures (and I think even commented on it one time). They are gorgeous!!! Especially the TTD, so dramatic!

    Thanks for my dress. I'll probably do a planning thread, though I have to wait until it's almost my wedding date to post it. I should start preparing it though...

    Thank you!
    And thanks for the link to Lurky's pictures. I do love the pop of color on her! I think I would just have to find earrings to match, or a blue ribbon for my flowers. That way the blue necklace wouldn't look alone. Or if I choose pink, make sure I have pink flowers. I won't know what flowers I'll get until I get there though.

    I'm glad you are enjoying my TR. I'll try to finish Animal Kingdom soon. I got sidetracked by my cat sitting ON my arm last night, and then it was just getting too late.

    Thank you!
     
  15. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    First of all, how about a picture of the little culprit who stopped me from continuing my update last night?
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    His name is Ti-Myst, and he is 7 years old.

    Here is his little sister (not blood related), Yuna. She is 4.
    [​IMG]

    Ok, so back to the trip report.


    Mega Waves, Date Night, and FastPass Baby!


    Day 2 - Our real first day at WDW - Rope drop at Magical Kingdom? - Continued

    *Oops, I reread my notes and realized that I forget to say that we used our EE FP after we got new ones for KRR. We all loved the coaster, though me and DD did feel a little woozy because of the dark backward part.
    [​IMG]

    Ok, so we were walking around the back of the Tree of Life. It lead to "It's Tough to be a Bug. There was no wait, so we watched it. It was quite funny. We should've taken a picture with the bugs 3D glasses though.

    The Lion King is one of my all-time favorite animated movie, so that's where we headed next. Again, we got there just in time for the next show so only a 5-10 minutes wait. The show was GREAT! I sang along the whole time. I'm actually torn for my Disneymoon, because part of me wants to see it again, and part of me wants to try out Nemo... Hopefully we'll have time for both!
    We were in the Elephant section!
    [​IMG]

    Time for some FOOD PORN! popcorn::
    We ate lunch at Flame Tree BBQ. We found some nice shaded seating in the back, overlooking the river/lake and Expedition Everest.
    I got the salad (good but way too big), DD got the pulled pork sandwich, and DH got the ribs. Everything was tasty, including the chocolate cake and (I think) key lime pie desserts.
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    [​IMG]

    Though DD and DH are not big animal fans, I am so I really wanted to walk the Maharaja Jungle Trek. Tigers are amongst my favorite animals. Didn't get a good picture of them though. :sad1: Outside of the trek I enjoyed watching the scaffolding full of monkeys. Cute!

    It was finally time for the ride I had been waiting for, Kali River Rapids. I love water, so I was hoping to get soaked. My wish came true! The wave came STRAIGHT over us and we were drenched.
    Some were happy about this:
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    Some... not so much! ;)
    [​IMG]


    By this time it was around 1:45pm and we had done everything we had planned on doing at Animal Kingdom. No more than a 10 minutes wait on anything. Our first park was a success!

    On the bus drive back to the resort I got a text saying our room was ready. Yay! We were in Aruba, building 56. The view out of our room was a lovely courtyard. We couldn't be more close to the bus stop, which was great at night after long days in the park. It was a nice 5-10 minutes walk to Old Port Royal, which didn't bother us.

    After settling in to our room we decided to try out the resort pool. It was renovated just a few years ago and has a very cool pirate theme. It rained a little, but no lightning so we stayed in the pool. DD didn't know how to swim and was quite afraid of water, so we spent a lot of time trying little exercises with her and showing her how fun swimming can be.

    I didn't take pictures this time, but we have another day at the pool later in the week.

    By the time we got back to the room it was already past 5pm. A quick shower, then off to Hollywood Studios!

    First thing we did was grab a fastpass for Star Tours. It was for 45 minutes later, so we went to Backlot Express to eat dinner. It was the SALTIEST fries I have ever eaten. I usually put lots of salt on my fries, but this was way too much. None of us finished it. Burger was ok. The marbled cheesecake, which we brought back to the room and ate later (we often did that, as they often gave us too much food) was awesome!
    [​IMG]

    DD and DH rode Star Tours (I was feeling queasy. Not sure if it was because of eating too much, or seeing the sign say be careful about motion sickness that made me nervous).

    We got in line for Fantasmic. It was a long wait, both outside and inside the theatre. It was a great show, but we doubt we'll want to wait that long again for it.

    We went back to the resort and straight to bed.

    Up next, breakfast with Stitch!!
     
  16. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Mega Waves, Date Night, and FastPass Baby!


    Day 3 - "Yes Stitch, it really is you"

    On our first official night at Disney we had seen Fantasmic, then came back to the resort and went to sleep.

    On this third day of our trip we got woken up at 6am by a phone call from Stitch. What a coincidence, as we had a breakfast planned with him that morning. :rotfl: We got ready, took a bus to the Magic Kingdom, then the monorail to the Poly. We didn't wait too long before we were seated for our breakfast at Ohana.

    The food was great. First we received a fruit platter and some bread:
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    Breakfast is served family style, so they just bring everything in the middle and you take what you want. There was bacon, scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausage and something else I don't remember. You can also see the fruit juice in this picture, which DD and DH said was extremely tasty:
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    You could also ask for the traditional Mickey waffle, which I did of course!
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    Now, my favorite part of the day (and possibly even the whole trip!), Stitch came to see us! I LOVE Stitch!!! I have been wanting to adopt him and give him a nice family ever since I saw him cry all alone in the forest like the ugly duckling. :hug:
    Here is me spotting Stitch across the room:
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    As part of my teacher training education in college, I took a class on how to teach art to children. In that class we had to do several art projects. For one I decided to draw Stitch, so I brought this drawing for him to sign. When I presented it to him Stitch kept pointing at the drawing, then himself, then the drawing again. He could not believe he was holding a picture of him. I told him "Yes Stitch, it really is you." :goodvibes
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    He signed my picture, and gave me the biggest hug! I was on cloud 9. :cloud9:
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    Then just before he left he licked me! :rotfl2:
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    The other characters then made their way to us (for some reason everytime I look at that picture I feel like Lilo is making the sign for "call me" :confused3 LOL):
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    We finished breakfast just in time to get to Magic Kingdom for rope drop. Even caught a bit of the opening show. :)

    Continued in next post...

     
  17. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    We all had been to Magic Kingdom when we were younger, but it still felt magical seeing the castle again.
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    Our first order of business was riding Buzz Lightyear. Dh navigated, while DD and I shooted. I won, but our scores were all very low. We then made our way to the other side of the park and got FP for Splash Mountain. We rode Big Thunder Mountain, which I was very excited about because it had been closed when I had last been there 20 years before. It did not disappoint. :thumbsup2 Then it was on to Pirates of the Caribbean, which we all had great memories of. Wait was less than 15 minutes for all our rides that day.

    For Jungle Cruise our skipper was Sarah, We all laughed a lot at her corny jokes. :rotfl:
    [​IMG]
    We then went to watch the Enchanted Tiki Room. I don't remember where I had read it (probably in the Unofficial Guide), but whoever said that this show must have been written by someone on drug was right. :hippie: It was entertaining in it's own way.

    Onto Haunted Mansion, a favorite of mine back when I was a kid. It was even better this time, now that I speak English and could understand everything that was being said. ;)
    It was time to use our FP for Splash Mountain. Love this ride! It's the perfect combination of great storytelling, lots of details, and a little thrill at the end. :thumbsup2 We then got FP for Big Thunder Mountain because DD loved it so much and wanted to ride it again. It's one of the only attraction that we had time to do twice during our trip.

    We grabbed some slushes and smoothies and took the raft to Tom Sawyer Island. I have to say, this was a nice hidden gem for us. We really enjoyed our time there, exploring the caves, walking on the barrel bridge, shooting people on Big Thunder Mountain :rolleyes1 (ok, not really, that would not have been nice. ;)) and leaving our mark in one of the playground area:
    [​IMG]
    While we were there it rained a bit, but not very hard so we just kept on exploring the island. Just too bad that we had JUST put on another coat of sunscreen and it was all washed away. Oh well. :confused3

    We made our way back on land and used our FP for Big Thunder Moutain. By then it was about 1:30pm and we had done almost everything on our touring plan. The park was getting quite crowded, and the rain seemed to want to come back, so we decided to leave the park and go to Downtown Disney for a few hours. We'd come back later for our ADR at Crystal Palace. I'll talk about that in my next update.

    I'm sorry, we had taken way more pictures than that at Magic Kingdom, but I can't find them. :confused:
     
  18. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    I know we are still several months before we can make ADRs, but I've been thinking about this a lot lately. Since we'll either be paying OOP or having the quick-service dining plan, we will only be eating at table-service restaurants a few times. But there are so many choices in Disney that it's hard to narrow it down to 2-3!!! Please help!

    I know for sure one of them HAS to be a character meal. Last time we did dinner at Crystal Palace and breakfast with Stitch. I loved both, especially Ohana because Stitch is my favorite. I wouldn't mind doing it again, however I kind of want to try something new. I was thinking of breakfast at Tusker House with Donald. That way we can head straight to the Safari after. However lately I've been reading reviews that say that it's really loud and rushed. Can anyone compare it to either Ohana or Crystal Palace so I can have an idea what to expect? How is the food? Should we try something else instead, like maybe Chef Mickey or Cape may Cafe?

    Our second choice is Ohana for dinner. DH is a huge meat fan, so that's why he wants to try this. I just like the Poly and I want to watch Wishes from the beach, so I agreed. But again, lots of contradicting reviews. Any thoughts on this?

    Finally, as I've posted last week, we have recently been thinking of Coral Reef, mainly for the atmosphere. What do you guys think about this? Any good or bad experiences there?

    Otherwise, any other suggestions, hidden gems you have found, something we can't miss (but not signature as that is too pricy)?

    Hope you guys can help me!
     
  19. inkedupmomma

    inkedupmomma If you live to be a 100, I hope to live to be 100

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    first off, I loveeee coral reef! everything, the food, atmosphere, service, everything! I was scared to go, since it did get so many bad reviews, but I am pretty picky and I loved it!

    I also LOVED Tusker House! Although, I will agree, it is loud..but I didn't feel rushed, other than by my own impatience!

    Sophia (Ohiodisneylover) loves grand floridian cafe, and from her pics it looks super romantic! so that may be fun! I also recommend Kona cafe for breakfast if you can fit it in!! I haven't done dinner there yet, but the breakfast was amazing!

    As far as Ohana goes, I'm on the fence. Went there, but didn't love it..didn't hate it either! The dessert is TO DIE FOR though! I can say that! I think it is a fun experience, just not fantastic food if you are looking for quality.

    Boma is another great breakfast if you are looking for one, as is Chef Mickeys!

    Hope that was helpful!
     
  20. ronnmel

    ronnmel DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for the suggestions. I just checked the menus and out of all those you mentioned, I have to say Boma sounds yummy!! So many choices! And I did want to visit Animal Kingdom lodge... Now I don't know if I should give up having a character meal for a great breakfast... Tough choice!

    I think DH had mentioned wanting to try the Tonga toast, so Kona Cafe is a definite other possibilities. I'm not a fan of bananas though... which means I may also not like the dessert at Ohana...

    Not so sure about the Grand Floridian Cafe though. We ate at Narcoossee last time and though the food was amazing, it just isn't a resort that interests us much... not our style.

    I'm getting hungry!
     
  21. inkedupmomma

    inkedupmomma If you live to be a 100, I hope to live to be 100

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    I am not a fan of GF either! BUT, the food is the main objective here is food! Boma is awesome, and Kona is my fav for breakfat! I get the big kahuna, not the tonga toast though!

    another fun breakfast is 1900 park fare..again at the GF, BUT alice and mad hatter are there!!
     

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