Ten Sleeps in Disney World!! - An Aug Trip Report *5/9 Departure Day & Final Thoughts

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by Mickey_Mom, Aug 28, 2009.

  1. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Do you remember your imagination?
    Where Neverland was a destination?
    Your magical adventure isn't over yet
    Just hold on tight and don't forget

    Every wish, every dream you ever had
    Close your eyes
    And it will all come rushing back
    Fly away
    All you need is to believe and remember when

    You never know where your dreams might take you
    So keep them safe and sound don't let reality break you
    Feel your sweetest memories come and carry you away
    Just get lost in yesterday

    Surrender to the innocence
    You thought you left behind
    And reach the child that lives inside

    Fly away
    All you need is to believe and remember when

    Remember when

    --Richard Marx (Written for Disneyland's 50th Anniversary)


    :welcome: to my family’s August trip report! If you’d like to read the planning that went into this trip, check out my PTR here. It has handy dandy chapter links if you’d rather not read the chatter and extra stuff.

    In a nutshell:
    We stayed at the Pop Century Resort (Remember When…. ;)!) from August 15th to August 25th. Ten wonderful sleeps in Walt Disney World! :cloud9: This was our fourth trip in four years and our second time staying at the Pop. Our objective this time around was to stop and smell the roses if you will. Experience all the little things you tend to miss when you try to do everything and above all…. relax! I love love love to take pictures of everything and I fancy myself a decent photographer so strap yourselves in for a report chock full of pictures!

    My Cast of Characters:

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    Me, Tracy
    As much as I know I’ll regret using this picture as my introduction :rolleyes:, it sums me up fairly well. Always looking for the fun and positive in things, and slightly goofy. I’m a football and hockey nut and I love to sing. I’m also fiercely protective of my children, especially my daughter (more on that in a moment) and I tend to over-react to what I perceive as intolerance.

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    My hubby, George
    We’ve been thru thick and thin him and I the last twenty years, married for fifteen of them this October, and I love him to death :lovestruc. He is an impatient creature, (except when it comes to our daughter, oddly enough since she can usually stretch that patience to its outer limits! ...more on that in a moment), and he’s very generous. He’s incredibly sarcastic and is not afraid in the slightest to say it like it is.

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    Ariana
    Oh, how to sum up our daughter in a few sentences? She is a very happy almost thirteen year old :-)eek:) who has been Disney obsessed since birth. She loves to watch movies, dance, spend time on the computer, princesses and the colour pink. She also was diagnosed with autism at the age of three and struggles with communication, attentiveness and sitting still. She is incredibly smart and stubborn and has little sense of danger. When she sees something she wants, she goes to get it. She is the inspiration for our trips and I love to experience everything thru her eyes. Pure innocence! :littleangel:

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    Alex and Demetri
    These two are frick and frack so its only sensible to pair them up in their introductions. :rotfl: Alex is freshly fourteen and a very mature, responsible young man. He’s popular, kind and the kid his friends’ parents choose to take with their child to the cottage for a week. He’s had to grow up fast and deal with the sacrifices that can come with having a sibling with special needs, so I try to balance out things for him with little privileges here and there. He loves and is protective of his sister but his best friend is his little brother. Demetri is four and a half and worships his big brother to the ends of the earth. :worship: He is our little late gift after trying to have a third child for over six years. He is a very fast learner, will talk your ear off and is so darn cute and vivacious you can’t help but smile when he’s around.

    You know the sayings ‘God doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle’ and ‘all things happen for a reason’ and ‘what goes around, comes around’? Well, I’m a big believer in those sayings and despite the ups and downs we’ve faced, I can’t imagine our lives any other way!

    Welcome aboard for our magical adventure! :wizard:

    Next up: We’re off to Buffalo!

    Handy Dandy Chapter Links:

    August 15th - TRAVEL DAY
    We're off to Buffalo!
    A Magical Surprise!
    Boys vs Girls Scavenger Hunt
    Favorite and Not-So-Favorite Things for Day 1

    August 16th - MAGIC KINGDOM
    A Royal Invitation
    An MK Aggravation and Quick Recovery!
    A Jungle Cruise Surprise and a Failed Plan

    August 17th - ANIMAL KINGDOM
    Where's Demetri?! Where's Ariana?!
    Favorite and Not-So-Favorite Things for AK Day

    August 18th - EPCOT
    Epcot and Teppan Edo
    Rain, Rain, Go Away
    Favorite and Not-So-Favorite Things for Epcot Day

    August 19th - TYPHOON LAGOON
    Havoc on a Seaside Village
    Storms, Sun and Sundaes

    August 20th - DISNEY QUEST and DOWNTOWN DISNEY
    Ohana Means Family and Alia Means WAIT!
    Disney Quest!
    Planet Hollywood and DTD Part 1
    DTD Part 2 - Shopping and Favorites for the Day

    August 21st - BLIZZARD BEACH
    Blizzard Beach Shut Down!
    MK and Changed Plans

    August 22nd - BLIZZARD BEACH and EPCOT
    BB Do-Over and Epcot Fun

    August 23rd - RESORT DAY and FANTASMIC
    Splashing & Fantasmic!

    August 24th - DISNEY'S HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS
    Shows, Shows and More Shows!
    DHS Wrapped Up

    March 17th - DISNEY ON ICE - PRINCESS CLASSIC
    Review with Lots of Pictures!

    August 25th - DEPARTURE DAY & FINAL THOUGHTS
    Departure Day and Final Thoughts
     
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  3. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    The night before setting off, George and the kids were enjoying a leisurely swim in our pool, taking it easy and enjoying a rare sunny day. The nincompoops! While they were having a jolly old time outside, I was inside finishing everything up. I really hadn’t left much to the last minute….. just the packing. :scared1: (I mean come on, how long should that have taken?) We got the timer on the pool set up, the fridge was emptied, the garbage was taken out and we enjoyed our last take out meal since neither of us felt like cooking. Despite my desire for all of us to get a good nights sleep the night before, it was already 10:30pm and we were still all up doing heaven knows what. :sad2: Finally I cracked the whip and shortly after crossing off our last X on our countdown calendar, off to bed we went.

    My family are not morning people. We love to sleep in, eventually go to the closest Tim Hortons for coffee, muffins, donuts and timbits :coffee: and only around lunch time do we actually feel prepared to face the day. So it was with a groan the night before when I timed out and told the kids when we’d have to be out the door to start the drive to the Buffalo airport – 7am. Yikes!:eek: Who came up with that plan? Our flight was at 12:20pm so going backwards, we’d need three hours to make the drive and allow for any slow border crossings on a Saturday morning. George was born in Greece and only recently got his Canadian citizenship. We’re so used to having to produce extra paperwork for him at border crossings we just automatically add an hour to whatever time schedule we’re keeping. And then they want you there two hours before your flight is scheduled to depart so hence our five hours back starting time. Anyways, on this particular morning however, my alarm went off at 6:30am and bam! I was up! No fooling around here! Down the hall I go opening doors announcing its time to get up and I’m met with the customary ‘ungh’ and rolling over of sleepy children until I remind them…. “Come on! We’re going to the airport!” Well, why didn’t you say so mama, that’s different! :yay: Bam! Out of bed they all were and so started the rush to zip up those suitcases, brush their teeth and throw on their sandals!

    It’s about time to pack up the van when Alex asks, “Do you have the directions to the airport?” Ummmmmm, no. So while the boys are loading up, I’m plugging our computer back in and MapQuesting for directions. I really am usually so very organized. :blush: Oh well, we’re only 10 minutes behind schedule which is actually fantastic for my family so if that’s the least of my problems…? Yippee! Off to the van we go, we wave goodbye to the house and head straight for the nearest Tim Hortons drive thru. :drive: Coffee in hand, timbits in mouth, I am feeling great at the time we’re making and on to the highway we go! I turned around and snapped a picture as we got underway.

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    Alex intentionally looked a little shell-shocked, this was the first in what I was to discover was many a picture with bizarre looks from him!

    About the time we were reaching the border, I took a video of Demetri singing and rocking out in his car seat to the Black Eyed Peas song “I Gotta Feeling”. Hysterical! :rotfl2: The time stamp on the video was less than an hour from when we started so we were clipping along ahead of schedule. There was zero wait at the border, lots of cars but we were lucky enough to snag a lane that no one was choosing for some reason and we sailed right on thru. I’d had my handy-dandy lime green recipe card holder that held our passports and birth certificates and health cards at the ready and in a snap we were waved thru. :thumbsup2 Sometimes we get a little extra quizzing because Ariana doesn’t always answer any direct questions from the border crossing guards, but today we were all set. “Enjoy your vacation! Take the I-190 south here on your right!” Yes Sir! :drive:

    We reached the airport with no problems, but we were an hour and a half ahead of schedule so we decided to stop at Denny’s for breakfast. George is the only breakfast eater in our family, so while he enjoyed his bacon and eggs the rest of us kinda just pushed them around on our plates. Demetri did enjoy one of his pancakes after picking up his clump of butter and shoving it in his mouth thinking it was some fancy whipped cream topping or something. :lmao: The look on his face was priceless and after I stifled my laughter I helped him discreetly spit it back out again. Breakfast done and half an hour later, we climbed back into the van and headed over to the airport. We knew where to park and remembered to keep our parking ticket with us this time with our pole location written on it. :thumbsup2 I filed that away into my coupon organizer for our return and we headed over to the shuttle bus area to get picked up. We were still way ahead of schedule which had the kids lamenting the loss of sleep and the long wait ahead in the airport gate but no one was complaining! We shuttled in, checked our baggage, presented our boarding passes and passports for inspection and went flying thru security to wait at our Gate. It was about this time when George turned to me and said, “Aren’t we bringing a stroller?” Crap! :scared: We’d forgotten the stroller in the van! Neither of us wanted to go back and get it so we decided we’d pick one up down there. Dang.

    We now had two hours to kill before our flight. George napped off and on, Alex read his book, and Ariana and Demetri took strolls with either myself or George exploring the airport. The site of the planes taking off and landing kept their attention for a while and Alex and Demetri also would go off once and a while running back and forth with the conveyor belts. :rolleyes:

    Demetri and I explored the shops.
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    And then I told him to run to the end of the gate area to watch the planes coming and going.
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    We waited until a plane came in for landing to take another picture.
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    And then it was off to the play area where he made a new friend.
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    Soon the plane we were going to be on landed and we watched the suitcases be taken off and ours put on.
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    They really don’t take too much care with the suitcases. They were throwing them around like crazy. It was quickly our turn to board and after Demetri took a moment to explain to us what to do in a case of an emergency,
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    we started the take off procedure. What’s that you say? A take off procedure? Well silly, first you have to pat your legs slowly. Pat, pat, pat. Then you have to raise your arms, as high as you can, and say blastoff! It worked and we were in the air!

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    Two and a half hours later, the kids and I (and Baby Simba) were Magically Expressing our way to the Pop Century while George picked up the rental car.

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    It’s a little blurry, but come on, I had to get that shot.

    Just a half hour later we were there!
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    Next Up: A Magical Surprise!
     
  4. mickeystoontown

    mickeystoontown DIS Veteran

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    I'm in! First things first....what a cute family you have. Second, you guys arrived at Disney the day we left from our 10 day trip. Looking forward to reading all about your Disney adventures.

    Lisa
     
  5. cjackearl

    cjackearl DIS Veteran

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    Am I first? Yahoo, yahoo, yahoo!!!:banana: Now back to read. I'm so excited!
     
  6. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    There was zero line at the registration :thumbsup2 and I walked right up while the kids went to the TV area to chill out. I’d warned them before arriving I could be a little while and to just make themselves comfortable but once again everything was ready for us thanks to the on-line check in a few days earlier and it was super fast. :cool1: This was the point where we had our magical surprise start. pixiedust: The cast member starts to explain to me where on the map our room is, and she starts to say, “Your preferred rooms are in the….” and I actually cut her off and said, “Oh wait, we didn’t reserve preferred. We have standard and I’d requested a room in the 90’s section….?” We’d had that section on our first trip and it was super convenient cutting across the parking lot to the bus area. I was a little disappointed we’d not gotten our request and it looked like she was pointing to a section really far away from everything until she went on to explain that we’d been upgraded to preferred rooms in the 50’s section that was ten steps away from the main building! Yippee! :woohoo: Our first ever upgrade! We were in building number one on the third floor. Just around from the bowling pin stairs – close enough to be convenient but far enough away that we didn’t hear any noise at all! What a great start! Everything was going our way and I was so happy about where we were. :banana:

    The room itself was as we’d remembered it.
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    The kids did a victory pose that we’d finally arrived and were ready to start!
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    Oh, and this was waiting for us:
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    We couldn't come to an agreement on what it is. A puppy? Eeyore? :confused3

    Next up: Boys vs Girls Scavenger Hunt…. Who will be victorious?!
     
  7. cjackearl

    cjackearl DIS Veteran

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    Aw nuts, I'm second. Ok, still back to read.:thumbsup2
     
  8. SunnieRN

    SunnieRN DIS Veteran

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    Woo hoo, I'm in!! Your kids are so cute!!:goodvibes
     
  9. cjackearl

    cjackearl DIS Veteran

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    What a great start! I adore the intro picture of you. So funny!

    What, pray tell, is a timbit? Is it a Canadian something yummy?

    I love the picture of Demetri explaining the plane's safety protocols.:laughing: Tooo cute!

    What is Baby Simba wearing on his head? Did Arianna make him a crown?

    Yea for check in upgrades!:woohoo: What a great way to begin a magical vacation.:goodvibes
     
  10. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Hi there! :wave: You're fast! Thank you :goodvibes

    :lmao::rotfl2:

    Hello! :wave2: Thanks, I think they're cute too! :rotfl:

    I was so tickled! I'd never had one before and it was sooooo convenient!
     
  11. jenjolt

    jenjolt Loves All Things Disney!

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    YAY what a great start!!!! I'm so glad you guys had a great time and I can't wait to hear all about it!!!

    WOOT for a free upgrade those are always a lot of fun!!!!!! YAY!!!!!

    Love the victory pose!!! Need more need more!!!
     
  12. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Hey Jen! Welcome aboard! We had lots of silly moments this trip and I can't wait to share it with all of you! :rotfl:
     
  13. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Hi Tracy!!!
    Just got back today and was so excited to see that you have started your TR! YAY!!:yay: I hope you had a magical trip and I can't wait to read all about it!!:goodvibes

    We didn't get in until 3am this morning, and the boys were up around 7:00:rolleyes: Needless to say, I'm exhausted and off to bed. I will catch up tomorrow.:thumbsup2

    Can't wait.popcorn::
     
  14. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Hey Angie!! Welcome back, did you have a great time? Are you starting your TR soon? Sleep tight and we'll catch up tomorrow! :yay:
     
  15. JPFamilyMom

    JPFamilyMom DIS Veteran

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    I feel like I'm joining the party so late, but I'm thinking I may still have made pg 1. Woo hoo, ok, just holding my spot, going back to read :lmao:



    ok, love the pat pat pat, wave your hands in the air. that was great.
     
  16. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Hello!! :laughing: We've done that for each flight take off. It's such fun to say blast off! with your arms in the air as the plane literally lifts off the runway.
     
  17. Reiana

    Reiana Earning My Ears

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    Can`t wait to read more :goodvibes
     
  18. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    :welcome: Glad you're joining in!
     
  19. Mickey_Mom

    Mickey_Mom DIS Veteran

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    Our plan while George was taking the rental car to Wal-Mart for some room snackies, souvenirs and a stroller, was to have a picture scavenger hunt. I’d found one here on the DIS and selected 20 items from it I thought would be fun and easy enough for us to find and I put a map of the resort on the back of each list. We broke into partners, boys versus girls, and the rules were simple. Each team had a list and a camera and you had to find and take pictures of each partner with as many items as you could. The team back to the room in one hour with the most items found, wins! :yay:

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    With my hand on the door handle and the boys poised to run, I threw open the door and let them out first. Had to give them a small advantage didn’t I? :thumbsup2 George says I'm very competitive, bah! Just before they’d whispered to themselves where they were going first and when the door opened they shot right out without hesitation. Ariana and I, on the other hand, decided once we approached the stairs to stay on the third level and just boot around to the other side of the building where the bowling pin pool was. We took a lot of pics right from there and crossed off a whole lot of items right off the bat! :cool1: I’d promised the boys I would take two pictures of everything, with and without Ariana, since she wasn’t going to be able to take pictures of me.

    7. Each pool from an upper level balcony!
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    8. How many icon pictures can you get ?
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    From there we decided to hit the lobby where I knew at least three more items were located and we took a bunch more pictures in there.

    12. How many shadow boxes in the lobby are there ?
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    2. What is Everything Pop ?
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    11. Find the refillable mugs !
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    Then we scooted out one of the back doors of the main building to more areas around the different sections.
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    6. Find Goofy and his red car !
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    3. Play a game of Twister 1
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    We hit the mother lode of icons to take pictures of in the 70's section.
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    And we ran into squirrels and bunnies, but no duckies.

    14. Find a Bunny, Duck and Squirrel !
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    At this point, we were about half way thru our allotted time and we ran into Alex and Demetri. Alex said he didn’t have very many items crossed off and Demetri was wilting a bit in the sun. Demetri then officially became a member of the girls team so Alex could speed up his game and we continued on. Next item we ran into?

    CONTINUED IN THE NEXT POST
     
  20. JPFamilyMom

    JPFamilyMom DIS Veteran

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    This was such a neat idea, great way to keep the kids entertained. I'll have to use that idea on future trips when my kids get a little older. Can't wait to see the rest of the pictures. What a fun resort.
     
  21. jenjolt

    jenjolt Loves All Things Disney!

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    Awww...I love the scavenger hunt idea...what fun!! I can't wait to see which team comes out on top!!!!! I'm going to have search on here for those, I know a couple of families who would love those to try!!!!

    Don't you just love the theming at POP! It is so much fun and a beautiful resort...by far my favorite value!
     

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