Our First Magical Poly Vacation: April 14-21 2012!

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by DaveinFallsChurch, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. emma212010

    emma212010 DIS Veteran

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    I really want to try Ohana, but it is unavailable for when we go in June. What a great night in the MK! So fun!! Wow, what a great idea of going to get FPs for Soarin' right before rope drop! :thumbsup2 AND no line for characters!! :woohoo:
     
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  3. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Emma, don't give up on Ohana just yet. Keep checking for ADRs on a daily basis or even more frequently! Ohana is one of the restaurants that seems to get a good amount of cancellations based on my experiences and others on DIS.

    After my solo night in MK, I a solo trip to Disney could be a lot of fun. Probably not going to happen with me anytime soon. I don't think I can leave my family behind to go Disney by myself unless there's a conference I have to attend to. :lmao:
     
  4. pwdebbie

    pwdebbie DIS Veteran

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    Do keep checking several times a day. I planned our last trip 2 1/2 months out and got 'Ohana dinner and Le Cellier lunch and dinner, which are supposedly the hardest reservations to get.
     
  5. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Definitely! :thumbsup2

    For this past trip, I used to check for ADRs everytime I sat in front of a computer. :rotfl:
     
  6. auprincess

    auprincess DIS Veteran

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    That is exactly why we went, and how I talked DH into going. Even though we have tons of pictures with the characters, we don't have any with them in their traditional clothes (except 1 of Mickey and Pluto at the visa greet a few years ago). All of our pics are from Chef Mickey's or AK.
     
  7. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Monday April 16th Part II - Epcot Day

    We next headed to the Seas with Nemo Pavilion. On our way out of the Land Pavilion, there was a family walking in front of us. The adult daughter was telling her elderly parents that they were going to head over to TT next. I usually don’t try to bud in other people’s conversation, but seeing the elderly couple I just didn’t want them to trek all the way over there to find out the ride was closed. So, I told the daughter that the ride was closed starting today for s few months. They actually took it very well and adjusted their plans, thanked me, and moved on. I love how almost every visitor and not just CMs are so friendly to each other at Disney.

    As we approached the Seas Pavilion, I was getting ready for what had become a traditional photo-op in front of the The Seas Pavilion sign that has Nemo figurine with it. In the past, the kids would climb up on the elevated area and was able to stand next to Nemo for a pic. Well, to my surprise, when we got there we noticed that Disney had planted all these plants around Nemo. It was impossible for anyone to climb up next to him. So we skipped the pic, walked past the seagulls next to the entrance (can anyone really pass by these seagulls without saying mine mine mine? That takes a lot of will power if you ask me) and got indoors. And as soon as we entered through the doors, that’s where we met the back of the line! I wasn’t expecting this! Wasn’t today a recommended park day by both EasyWDW and Touring Plans?? This was the longest we ever had to wait in line for any attraction at Disney during our entire stay which was only 15 minutes. I’ll still take it but not sure why it was so backed up. I think the ride was stopped on several occasions prior and during our wait so maybe that had something to do with it.

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    Once we finished the ride on a sea shell, we headed straight for Turtle Talk. Always a hit with our kids. DD kept her hand up pretty much to the end wanting to get picked for a question for Crush. But this was once again, not our year. One of these times, she’ll get picked. I asked her what her questions would have been if she had gotten picked and she told me it was “What do sea turtles eat?”.

    Once we left the Seas, it was time to go to Innoventions. DD had been looking forward to this all morning because she wanted to do the Great Piggy Bank Adventure again like last year. She just fell in love with this attraction at Innoventions. DS had falled asleep by then so DW parked him and herself on a comfy bench inside, while DD led Grandpa and me to do the Piggy Bank. As for Innoventions attractions go, it’s actually not bad. DD just loves carrying the oversized piggy bank which acts as an electronic keycard for the three stations. The three stations are basically arcade games with the objective being trying to save as much money as you can. My favorite it is the hot air balloon one where up to three people get their own giant lever (you know, the same sized lever Wiley Coyote used to use for his ACME gadgets to catch Roadrunner? Oh ooops, wrong animation company reference!) and they try to coordinate to get the hot air balloon on the screen move towards those shiny gold coins.

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    DD once again had a blast and went on it again with Grandpa alone. DW was perfectly happy staying put in her seat with DS so I joined them and relaxed. I also went and got us a ticket for Kimpossible in Innoventions to pick up while we were near International Gateway. DD got to play the piggy game twice and then it was time for us to head out towards our lunch ADR.

    We had a 1:35pm ADR at Le Cellier! While we were waiting for our table, the kids each picked up a “Duffy on Stick” at the Kidcot station which is right by the restaurant and spent time coloring. I took some of these pics while waiting. I have to say, Canada Pavilion landscape was one of my favorites at Epcot.

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    It wasn’t too long before we were seated and I was ready to try and decide for myself whether the food was worth the hype!

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    All week, one of the debates I was having with myself was “What am I going to order at Le Cellier?” It came down to two items. Either the Filet Mignon or the House Burger, both of which I heard great things about. I also wanted some poutine to go along with it. At the last minute, when the server asked what I wanted, my mouth said the House Burger. And it was goooooooood. DD ordered from the kids menu but she ordered the famous cheese soup as her appetizer. So naturally, I tried some of that as well and that was good. DW ordered the salmon sliders which she said she wasn’t too fond of. I think the sliders were a relatively new addition to the menu and I had heard mixed reviews about it. DFIL had the Pork Chop and thought it was excellent. We had a great meal but no room for dessert. We pretty much waddled out of the place.

    Next Up: A Meltdown to Remember in Germany.
     
  8. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    It's been a pretty busy week at work. Have been staring at my Disney pictures during lunch breaks to keep my energy up. Some weeks, the hospital can just absolutely sap my spirits.

    As another diversion, I've decided to invest in a DSLR camera. After combing through my pictures from Disney which many were blurry or grainy in the dark, I'm now wishing that I had a DSLR for the trip. Oh well, better late than never. Did some online reading and research, and am leaning towards the Canon Rebel T3i. Would love to hear recommendations or thoughts on DSLR from fellow DISers!!
     
  9. HalloweenNut

    HalloweenNut Rapidly becoming obsessive about all things Disney

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    Unless you're set on a DSLR another option is a superzoom bridge type camera. They call them bridge because they combine the ease of point & shoot with the larger body, manual controls and super zoom. I got a new Canon SX40 before our trip and loved the shots I was able to get with it. When we were watching the performance in front of the castle for example we were well back in the crowd but I was able to zoom right in to capture the whole stage or even a single performer. Not to hijack your thread but here are few shots to show you what it's capable of. All these were taken hand-held from the same vantage point. I really love this camera!

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  10. auprincess

    auprincess DIS Veteran

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    I have a Nikon D5000. I like it, but I really need to learn how to use it. Had it about a year and it is still on the auto setting.
     
  11. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Thanks! I was looking at those models online as well. Want to try them out at the store. Your pictures look very crisp even at higher zoom levels!

    Your comments made me look into that model and it looks nice and has gotten good reviews! I don't know why I wasn't looking at the Nikon models. I guess it's because our last 3 cameras have been Canons so I was for some reason mentally locked into those. I'll definitely have to try the Nikons out when I'm at the store.
     
  12. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Monday April 16th Part III - EPCOT

    We walked over to UK where the kids played in the red phone booths.

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    While they were in the booths, I quickly pulled out my trusty ol iPad and went online to search for the phone numbers for the phones in the booth on DIS. I found them, and called the number while DD and DS were in. They thought it was hilarious when they heard my voice. The only thing that was a little surprising was that the ring tone on those phones are digital ring tones and not the old fashioned bell ring. I don’t know why that surprised me. Afterwards, DW, DS, and DFIL moved on to France while DD and I picked up our Kimpossible communicators. It turned out our mission was back UK so we completed the whole mission which I thought was pretty cool. DD really got into it by the end but decided she didn’t want another mission. In fact, the most exciting part for her was dropping off the communicator in the red mail box at the backside of UK. I heard it land with metallic CLUNK. Yikes, do those phones survive those drops?

    View of UK
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    By the time we were done with our mission, the rest of the gang were already at the Japan Pavilion watching the drum performance. We caught up with them and finished watching the show. It was getting really hot by that point. It had been mostly cloudy in the morning but now it was clearing up and with temps in the upper 80s, I was ready for a break. We perused the Japanese department store – brought back some memories as I had grown up in Korea and the layout of the department store reminded me of the old department stores of my childhood. As we exited the department store, I spotted a couple eating shaved ice treats in the shade and thought that was an excellent idea. So, I went got a strawberry flavored shaved ice treat.

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    We all went up to the top portion of the garden right outside the Japanese counter service restaurant, and I shared the ice with everyone. It hit the spot. The garden was very well done too. There were very few people up there and the whole place felt very quiet, tranquil, and removed from the hustle and bustle of World Showcase.

    Japanese Garden
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    We made our way back down. Passed Italy then on to Germany.

    Got these on our way to Germany.
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    DW and DFIL went into the caramel store to get some, well, caramels. I was sitting along the lake side with the kids– if I recall, it was sort of a stonemade outlook area that jutted out into the lake. They were playing with their mist fans that I had purchased prior to the trip. I decided to take the pictures we got from Akershus out so I could take a picture of the photopass number (I took pictures of all photopass numbers and cards throughout the trip just in case we lost any of them). That led to the kids wanting to see the 4x6 pictures. DD returned them back to me as we were cleaning up and DW/DFIL returned from their mini shopping trip. DS on the other hand was tired, hot, sleepy, and cranky now since he didn’t get a long enough nap earlier in the day. So, he decided he was going to keep them and try to fold them. We gave him our usual time-out warnings and counted to three and he still did not relinquish them. DFIL took the pics away from his hands and that’s when all H, E, double hockey sticks, broke loose. He had the mother of all tantrums right there continuously yelling “I want my pictures!!” and we would quietly remind him “no” every couple of minutes. We did what we usually do at home. Let him run through the phases of the tantrum and wait for him to calm down. Except, it’s a little more difficult to do when it’s happening in the middle of Epcot. This went on for a good 15 minutes. I’m sure most of you parents reading are thinking been there done that – well maybe not necessarily at Disney, but somewhere public. One little girl, about 18-19 months of age, walked over next to him to see what all the fuss was about. Her parents quickly came by and redirected her away. Once it was over, he got back in his stroller and we were ready to go.

    By then it was already 5:35pm. DD had wanted to meet Mulan again this year and since the China Pavilion is the only place where we can meet her, we headed there. When we got to the meet and greet place, I did not see her out even though she was scheduled to be there. I asked a CM standing at that spot and she said that “Mulan had to go see the emperor for an emergency meeting” and that she may be back for her next set which started at 6:00pm. So, we hung around, enjoying the scenery.

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    The kids and Grandpa found a couple of frogs sitting on lily pads in the pond along the bridge. We also got to tour the Tomb Warriors exhibit.

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    Well, Mulan did not show up again so as we were packing up and getting ready to leave again, we realized that the acrobat show was about to begin. So we sat and watched the show for the first time. Enjoyed it quite a bit!

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    Next Up: Illuminations from a boat!!
     
  13. 204charity

    204charity DIS Veteran

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    Ahhh, the epic meltdown. LOL Although we didn't have any major "meltdowns" with our group on our trip, I can tell you that our only "moment" of the week happened at World Showcase too. Perhaps it has something to do with the park? LOL

    I love it, but I think it can get a bit dry for kids.
     
  14. jennyjinx3

    jennyjinx3 DIS Veteran

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    Great update...thanks for the peek into Le Cellier, it's on our list for Sept! I just love World Showcase, and we need to try the shaved ice too!:goodvibes
     
  15. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    I think that's very true that it's easy to hit a lull for the younger kids in the World Showcase area. The kids were usually occupied by Kidcot activities and the street shows but there was a stretch where not much was happening besides the scenic strolls.
     
  16. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    I think as the kids get older, I can see us spending more time and more number of days in World Showcase. There are so many restuarants and snack food items I want to try in there.

    I wish I had taken more pics in Le Cellier but the lighting there is one the dimmest of all the restaurants we visited so a lot of the pictures came out unusable especially the food pics!

    My next shaved ice flavor will be the "Rainbow" one! :thumbsup2
     
  17. HalloweenNut

    HalloweenNut Rapidly becoming obsessive about all things Disney

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    Just finished getting caught up on you TR. Great job! We avoided the big Meltdown but I think that was more do to luck than anything else - our DD was having such a good time there was nothing to set her off! :) We were very thankful we had rented the stroller for the week as I think it saved us in the sense that she was able to rest in the stroller rides and so wan't as exhausted as she might otherwise have been. Our DD tends to go hard and then burn herself out.

    I'm so jealous you got to go on Haunted mansion at night. That was my one big personal disappointment with the trip in that I missed my opportunity to do so and only rode it once. I wanted so bad to see it at night, take in the new cemetery queue and take lots of photos. Oh well.

    Looking forward to reading more.
     
  18. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    Thanks!

    HM was fun and definitely enjoyed the queue as well as the overall exterior ambiance of the mansion at night. And even though the entire ride takes place indoors, the night time feel definitely adds to it and feels more in sync since most ghosts come out at night, right? ;)

    Next time, I do want to read up on some of the backstories for all of the characters. I think that would even enhance things more.
     
  19. HalloweenNut

    HalloweenNut Rapidly becoming obsessive about all things Disney

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    There was a soft cover coffee table book on the Haunted Mansion available at the Madame Leota cart that highlighted the design and construction of the Haunted Mansion with lots of photos/sketches and background info on the building of the attraction. I had really wanted to pick it up but thought I'd get it later when we came back at night so I wouldn't have to carry it all day. Of course that never happened and I didn't see the book anywhere else (Downtown Disney maybe?). Anyhow, I'm going to see if I can get it on Amazon.
     
  20. DaveinFallsChurch

    DaveinFallsChurch DIS Veteran

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    I'll have to look into that book as well!
     
  21. HalloweenNut

    HalloweenNut Rapidly becoming obsessive about all things Disney

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    Found it on Amazon! Guess what I'm ordering for my birthday? :)

    http://amzn.com/1423118952
     

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