The anti-commandos and the disney skeptics -- going in Janaury, 2013

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by shalom, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    So, are we crazy? :crazy2:

    To be honest, feedback indicates we’ve always been a little off. :tilt: Maybe we are crazy to go on a vacation when hubby’s losing a job – my mother certainly thinks so! ;) And of course some part of it is just that we’ve been to Orlando twice now, doing stuff Geek dad and the kids wanted to do, and it’s my turn, doggone it! :teeth:

    But mostly it’s that we’ve long seen this trip as the last, and in some senses, first, big vacation we’re going to be able to take as a family. When the kids were young, we simply didn’t vacation; hubby’s vacation time was used visiting family with a few days here doing projects on the house or helping friends or just taking the kids to a Big City museum on a weekday. There were a lot of reasons for that, but one big one is that we don’t live in the same state as any of our relatives, and we wanted the kids to know their grandparents!

    And we don’t regret that. Life is short, family is important. :grouphug: OTOH, we really enjoy vacationing with all five kids, which is a totally different experience than visiting relatives with them, and we really didn’t start doing that until a few years ago.

    Also I remember how it worked when I was a kid --- oldest kid hits their late teens, and that’s it for visiting distant relatives as a whole family for some years, let alone vacationing, because it’s just about impossible to coordinate when you’re working around all the projects and events and part time jobs/new career. Ballet Girl has already missed one vacation before because things came up, and this past week she got an opportunity to go somewhere she doesn’t want to pass up, but she’ll only have the “excused from ballet days” she needs if she doesn’t go with us, so she’s going to miss our next vacation, as well! :eek: Plus a lot of our vacations we enjoy ourselves muchly, but they’re kind of laid back and similar to stuff we take the occasional day off to do at home and thus blend a bit in the brain, while Ballet Girl sees the other stuff as one time opportunities (which the current one probably is). And I can see her point.

    So our thinking is, if we want to have our last, big, blow out vacation where everyone gets to come and create Special Memories of Family Fun, this is it. It’s not going to get any easier, especially if Geek dad is going to be job hunting and going back to “new job” type vacation time right along with the older two!

    Maybe we’re wrong. Maybe our older two will still be lounging around the house two, three, five years from now, with plenty of free time to vacation with us. Supposedly 85% of graduating college kids move back in with their parents, and there are tons of people still living “at home with mom” when they’re in their thirties, so who knows? :scratchin

    I’m thinking not, though. Geek dad would get a job delivering pizzas before he’d stay home living with his mom, and I think Mr. Cool is a chip off the old block in that department. Actually, I can see the Hermit still being here in five years if we don’t give her a boot :rolleyes:, but Mr. Cool is going to be on his own a.s.a.p., and vacationing with his siblings is not going to be a priority with him again until he has kids of his own and wants the cousins to get to know each other!

    So I say, if we can swing it without going into debt or biting into that severance package, we are going to Disney World. I sometimes suspect hubby is only good with that because he knows the last Orlando vacation I didn’t get to WDW because I was indulging his interests, but whatever his motive, he’s good with it.

    On the upside, if future WDW vacations don't involve all the kids, we might get down to what we consider a DVC-sized family! :yay: Always a silver lining. ;)
     
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  3. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    I'm reading through that, but I keep losing focus. I've been reading a dining trip report for about four days now. :rolleyes: I'm enjoying both of them, but I just get antsy. Writing is more calming for me, somehow, so I guess it's productive. I hope I am not this fidgity for the next six months, though! :faint:

    Also pushing buttons I wasn't aiming at; posted that way before I was ready, doggone it! I'm just going to edit it instead of reposting...


    I do long, involved planning, and even share it with people, but the truth is there are usually a couple of things I am ABSOLUTELY going to do, and the rest of it is pretty much up for grabs until the last minute.

    I'm doing my level best to ignore it, for the most part. Which is Geek dad's usual approach, and I'm usually the one trying to figure out how we're going to cope! But he knows the job market better than I and all, plus he makes more per hour as a consultant than he does at his normal job, but of course consulting jobs are few and far between, and there's no insurance. When I got married, a couple of people pointed me to Romans 8:28, which basically says things will work out for good, and sometimes I think I heard that then because things were going to get pretty ugly sometimes! :rotfl:

    But so far it's been true. Things don't always work out the way I want them to, but in the long run, I have seen a lot of positive outcomes even from very negative things. Positive enough to justify the pain? Eh, that's more debatable. :upsidedow But worries just multiply the pain, and you can't change what's going to happen, I guess.

    My dad probably would have gone that route with my brother and I, but he moved out of state, instead. :p When he was a kid just out of high school, he told his dad that he figured he'd skip college and be a farmer. He'd been a farm kid his whole life, and worked pretty hard, too, and he figured he could hack it. College, OTOH, was scary. His dad eyed him for a long moment (his dad wanted him in college), then said, "Great, then I can back off and let you start taking over!", and then his dad started working him harder than he's ever worked before or since. After a week or two, dad finally said, "You know, maybe I should give college a shot after all."

    And that was the end of any talk about dad not going to college. :rotfl2:
     
  4. CatNipRules

    CatNipRules <font color=royalblue>Overplanner Extraordinaire..

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    I don't know how to do the whole multi-quote thing, so I just quoted it all. LOL!!

    You aren't crazy. You know, I say go for it. I've learned that sometimes you have to do things that not everyone is going to agree with. Because if it's right for you and your family then it's a go.

    I'm looking forward to the day that DH and I can go to Disney together. Just the two of us. We probably won't ever do DVC, but it would be nice. Not going to happen, but it would be nice. LOL!!

    We are going to Disney and I'm not sure if I will have a job in a month or two, but it's nice to have something to take my mind off of the stress of what might happen.

    I'm glad that your DH is willing to go with you to Disney. I have a feeling that he will end up liking it just as much as you do. Once you're there the Disney bug hits and it hits hard. LOL!!

    I think it depends on what they study as to whether they move back home or not. I'm not sure. I have no idea what my son is interested in. He's not sure that he wants to go to college. I'm sure that something will hit him in the next three years. At least I hope so. LOL!!

    You just need to make the right decision as a family. Vacations are important and I hope if I only teach my son one thing, I hope that it's that family is important.

    Sorry for rambling. LOL!
     
  5. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    The pics in this were all lifted off the Internet.

    When we were planning to go in May, I intended to stay at Wyndham Bonnet Creek. We love lazy rivers, and theirs look pretty nice, and in May we were likely to spend a fair bit of time in the pool. My one concern is that we tend to like really quiet resorts – Ballet Girl liked the Fountains alright, but she also describes it as “noisy.” Not in a bad way, but it just had a lot more energy going on in general. On the top floor, that was totally not an issue. On a lower floor... :confused3

    Bonnet Creek looks to me to be about as busy/high energy as a Disney resort. And although I’d love to stay in all the Disney resorts someday, there are some I know I don’t want to stay longer than a night or two. :p Since we were going to commit to Bonnet Creek for the whole vacation, I was a little worried, but only a little. I’m guessing my odds of getting my request when I ask for “somewhere quiet and away from the action, preferably with a view of the lake” were way higher than those of someone asking for a Theme Park View. ;)

    But since we’re staying in January, I’m thinking about Vacation Villas at Parkway. It’s a big resort, and while there are a lot of buildings gathered around the “party” pool, which I have heard can be loud:

    [​IMG]
    TripAdvisor

    [​IMG]
    https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/345325

    [​IMG]
    International Timeshare Network

    ... there are just as many or more that have quiet pools, and I’m guessing that the party pool isn’t going to be that noisy in January as it can get in the summer anyhow.

    People don’t like it because it doesn’t have a “resort” feel, and seems more like a bunch of regular condos, but that’s the vibe we tend to prefer anyhow. And it has “nature” trails (raised wooden walkways through swampy areas between the different sections of the resort), which are just the sort of thing we get a kick out of – we like to watch the turtles and birds and stuff.

    Another thing some people don’t like is that the 2BR units are “lock offs”; two units with a common entry. One option is larger on one side than the other:

    [​IMG]
    from Advantage Vacation

    The other version (and probably the one we’d rather have, in terms of which buildings they’re in), the two sides are about equal:

    [​IMG]
    Vacation Village Resorts

    Does anyone else love floorplans? I love floorplans. :love: Also maps. But I digress.

    I tend to prefer “dedicated” 2BRs, where it’s all one unit, because the main rooms tend larger, but the kids like lock offs because they get their “own” living room to mess with. In terms of the floorplans, I like the A/C one a bit better (assuming it has porches, although they aren’t on the floorplan). And if the pictures on the VV@P Flickr are to be believed, I’d prefer their décor, as well.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/vacationvillageresorts/with/5266391741/#photo_5266391741

    [​IMG]
    A/B. White walls, how I hate you. Although I guess they're actually a very pale peach, now I'm looking at while fully awake, which makes it look a bit warmer. Still not liking it much. And there’s another version of this unit with a dreadful striped couch, but it's ugly, so I won't bother offering it.


    [​IMG]
    A/C Unit. I like this living room better. Not loving the bed spread.


    No idea which bedroom belongs to what (the dining area tables provide a clue for the living rooms).

    [​IMG]


    Oh, I take it back – this wonderful room belongs with that wonderful striped couch!
    [​IMG]
    I actually kind of like the colors in that, although I'm not crazy about those plastic-feeling spreads.

    [​IMG]
    That's an A or C-Side spread

    [​IMG]
    That's a B-Side Spread

    If they were Disney resorts, I’m thinking maybe both those bedspreads belong in the Ugly Bedspread thread in the Disney Resort Photos forum. :p [And, wow, I must've been tired last night, because I posted that comment but not the two spreads that inspired it!] But they’re king beds, which I prefer on vacation (we have a queen at home, which I like, but on vacation I sleep better with more space). Although at least one review said the beds were soft, while I prefer firm. When I was in my twenties I used to sleep on the floor if I thought the bed too soft, but I don’t think I’d care to try that today!

    But really I expect we’d be fine there. It’s closer to the parks than some of the Deluxe resorts, so that part’s good. And there’s a twice-an-hour Lynx bus route near there that goes into WDW, so Mr. Cool could come and go as he pleased. I hate buses, myself, and will use the van, but he is pretty patient about bus schedules and transfers and stuff. I think he enjoys bus rides just as he does wandering around SeaWorld and looking at stuff.

    There’s availability right now, and has been for a while. The problem, of course, is that we don’t want to make reservations yet, and I have no idea if there’ll be availability when we do. Timesharers tend to reserve further out than people using motels or the like. This resort tends to have availability longer than average, though.

    And the flip side of reservations disappearing sooner is that you can often get deals further out – where the best hotel or motel deals are often the night you want the room, the best Timeshare deals can be available a few weeks, or even a month or two, ahead of time. So I’m sure we’ll find something we’ll be okay with. :) But I’d sure prefer it if it was a nice place at VV@P. ;)
     
  6. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    Multi-quoting the way I do it is fiddly and takes forever. I quote the original, then put [/quote] where I want to make a comment, then go back and copy that first bit with "QUOTE=NAME" and all that. Then I just keep pasting that little bit at the beginning of any section I want to quote, and closing each one by typing it out.

    Not really sure it's worth the effort, to be honest. Even though I do it all the time. :rolleyes:

    Yah, we won't be staying DVC unless we can trade into it. Right now that brings the price down into Moderate range for us, but you never know when that will change. But then, we aren't likely to stay in any of the resorts without a discount. If all the discounts go away, oh, well. :p I'm just not willing to pay anything like rack rate. We can still visit the resorts and use the restaurants, I reckon. They're brilliantly themed and the food is good whether you're sleeping there or not. :)

    Well, most of the food. I've had a couple of things I could do without trying again. ;)


    I hope you're right! :goodvibes And I hope it bites the boys, and Warrior Girl, as well.
     
  7. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    I write fiction, but I am not one of those writers who start at the beginning and write through to the end. I usually start with a scene that ends up buried in the middle, then after I have various scenes I go back and stitch them together in a fairly coherent order while adding all the stuff that goes in between that excites me, and then I go back again and fill in the stuff like, "oops, I forgot to mention" and "Oh, by the way, since that's kinda confusing, she knows this because they met over here that time..."

    I'm starting to think my trip reports will be the same, except the readers are reading the first draft instead of the final. :crazy2:

    So, here's all the stuff I meant to include the first time!

    SEAWORLD TIP Hubby got an AP because it would totally pay off since it includes free parking and a discount at the SeaWorld shops. And we knew we'd be hitting the shops. :rolleyes: But if you're going two days, paying the parking was about the difference between the two kinds of tickets anyhow, so even if you aren't much of a shopper it was worth it. Plus I think we got in with just the voucher, which I wasn't sure about. And obviously I'm still not :blush:, but if we paid for parking at the gate then he got the money back when he traded the voucher in for his pass.

    SEAWORLD TIP They’ve been running the second day free offer at SeaWorld since I’ve been paying attention, however not everyone realizes it only works if you take your ticket to guest services and get it punched or something before the end of your first day.

    Geek dad thinks I should point out that Mr. Cool did see Blue Horizons, just not with his younger siblings. Matter of fact, I think he saw the same show the Hermit and I went to, but we were on opposite sides of the stands.

    Geek dad took the younger kids to feed the stingrays, sharks, and seals. Feeding the critters costs extra, and the kids are supposed to pay for their own critter food, but I have my doubts that really happened. Geek dad is a soft touch. Also, he forgets to write it down. :p

    The Hermit and I missed the pets show when, on our way there, my glasses popped apart on one side because the screw fell out. And of course we then couldn't find the screw, even though the Hermit is a total Eagle Eye. I am legally blind without my glasses, so we had to find a way to fix them in order for me to see a show… or much of anything else! We were near a little shopping kiosk but the clerk was off getting things to restock the shelves or something so we had to track her down; I was hoping she might have a paper clip that I could stick through the hole the screw fell out of for a temporary fix. She looked and didn’t have any, finally sent us off to the shop by Arctic Adventure.

    They didn’t have any paper clips there, either, so I was trying to think of another approach when the lady behind the counter suddenly grabbed the stapler, stapled two pieces of scrap paper with it and handed it to me, saying, “Use the staple!” I had my doubts – staples are pretty thin, and it had to hold the two metal pieces pretty tightly around the lens – but it worked great! Yay for unnamed SeaWorld employee! :cheer2: Totally should have stopped in and given her kudos at customer relations (or whatever it’s called) on our way out, but of course we were late for meeting the troops and ran off before I even thought to get her name. FAIL.

    Warrior Girl was the only one young enough to get the kid’s Dining Deal, which comes with (or came with) a plastic plate shaped like a whale (the tail is a handle – I thought it was kind of cute) and a plastic cup. She rinsed them off after using them and stashed them in her backpack – I think they were about the only things in there, I have no idea why she brought the thing along. Then she lost her backpack after we sat through A’lure, and blamed me for not reminding her. :mad: I told her I am totally not responsible for her backpack. We raced back but by the time we got there, it was gone. :sad1:

    After the last orca show, Ballet Girl realized she didn’t have her backpack when we were about halfway across that path over the lake and blamed me. I suddenly remembered she hadn’t wanted to take her backpack into the splash zone and I totally WAS responsible for her backpack. :blush: We raced back and managed to retrieve that one. Whew!

    Mr. Cool (and his dad, I think-?) went up in the sky tower, and Mr. Cool said I could post some of his pictures. :)

    [​IMG]

    He was all excited back then to be able to see the Fountains from the park, but when I asked him to point out its general area in the pictures he’s all, “Mom, that was two years ago.” This is not him being all teenager – Geek dad is the same way when I ask him what he had when he went out for dinner the night before. “You expect me to remember? That was yesterday.” :rolleyes:

    The roller coaster in this next one is Kraken.

    [​IMG]

    Unless you count the carousel, that building with the gold dome there is the only ride anyone went on – “Journey to Atlantis.” It’s a flume ride, about on par with Splash Mountain I’m told, and Geek dad, Mr. Cool and Ballet Girl did it first thing in the day. Geek dad enjoyed it, Mr. Cool claimed to enjoy it but wasn’t really enthused about another go round, and Ballet Girl thought it was TERRIFYING. :scared:

    [​IMG]

    Journey to Atlantis had one of my favorite aquariums, “the Jewel of the Sea.” It’s a teeny tiny thing back behind the gift shop; that grey dome, below and to the right of the gold one. None of the Jewel ones are my pictures, but I’ll still defend this first photographer by saying I expect it’s only blurry because it’s kind of dark in there. :p

    [​IMG]
    Orlando Vacations Now

    The really cool part is that there is an aquarium in the ceiling:

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/shyzaboy/2778154741/

    And one in the floor:

    [​IMG]
    Have Fun in the USA

    I have no idea how that guy got that ceiling pic with the sharks in it, because I could barely make out anything up there with my eyes, let alone a camera! But I liked the light effects it creates in the room, so I'm all for it. The floor one is way cool, and it’s fun to watch infants and toddlers discover and try to interact with the fish down there. :)

    I said earlier that the only airconditioned show is A’lure, but most of the aquarium areas are cool, particularly the one down below Manta, which was another fave. Much of it is underground so it was bigger than I expected. Also, I really like the waterfall you walk by to get there; admittedly, I have yet to meet a waterfall I didn't like. ;) SeaWorld has lots of waterfalls. :love: The Magic Kingdom had some I didn't know about (what! My research was incomplete? :scared1: ), but the main reason I'm way excited about the Fantasyland expansion is the new water features.

    Bet you don't hear that sentiment very often. :teeth:

    So anyhow, we saw most of SeaWorld in one day, hubby got our tickets set up for our second day while I filled out the paperwork on the lost backpack, and we headed back to the condo. I crashed, but Geek dad and the younger three (four?) went swimming. I was right that the unheated pool was warm enough for them and they loved the slide, however they weren't much for the area with the cups tipping over with water and stuff because, while I would assume that it was technically the same temperature, "that water there was too cold."

    Although we had enough for next day's breakfast, we were running out of food in the condo, plus that staple wasn’t going to last long in my glasses, so Tuesday was going to be shopping day. WalMart in the morning :sick:, but Downtown Disney and the Lego Store in the afternoon! :cool1:
     
  8. CatNipRules

    CatNipRules <font color=royalblue>Overplanner Extraordinaire..

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    Do you write fan fiction or regular fiction? I write a bit also and just wondering. LOL!

    I think you've pretty much made up my mind for me!! I think we are going to do Sea World instead of US or IoA. To me it just sounds like much more fun.

    I love the ceiling and floor shots. I never get good shots like that when we go.

    It's funny to hear you talk about kids trying to get to the fish in the floor one. When DS was little there was a part of Mousegears that had balls in the floor. Everytime he saw it he would try to get the balls out of the floor. LOL!!
     
  9. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    Mostly I write my own stuff, but the last thing I actually finished was fanfiction, a Firefly story for the last issue of a fanzine a friend of mine had been publishing for over a decade. The Internet hasn't killed fanzines yet, but they're dying out. :sad1: OTOH, there's a ton of readable stuff on the Internet for free -- fanzines are expensive!

    I probably would write more fiction if I didn't write so many posts on the Internet. :rolleyes1

    Well you know I'm all for that. ;) We actually had a second SeaWorld day on that trip, or rather most of us did -- I think I just went in the morning, but if I remember rightly the Hermit didn't go at all. So there'll be more SeaWorld pics. :)

    Yeah, both people who took those shots must have known what they were doing. I haven't taken my camera to Orlando yet, but I've played with it enough to know I probably wouldn't have gotten good shots in that dim room. Geek dad gave me a camera for Christmas and it's actually exactly what I wanted (purple! ;) ), however I googled to show a picture of it to a friend and the first thing that came up was some guy slamming it as pretty worthless. :rolleyes: All I know is, if I drop it, I won't be out as much money as I would buying the one he recommends. And me eventually dropping my camera is more of a certainty than a possibility. :rotfl:

    I should be posting some pictures I took with it when I do our trip to Walmart, because I'm going to post pics of some of our Disney loot. pirate:
     
  10. BearcatsFan

    BearcatsFan <font color=green>we finally had a minute to breat

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    :thumbsup2 on the lifted photos of Vacation Villas. The place looks lovely, even with the ugly bedspreads. ::yes:: When do you think you'll decide about staying there and commit to the ressie? I've heard good things about Bonnet Creek also (I think there's an entire thread dedicated to the love of it down on the Orlando board).

    We haven't been to Seaworld in such a long time, so I'm really enjoying all the photos and commentary from there.
     
  11. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    Probably not until mid-October. Geek dad is supposed to know three months out before his job ends, and while he doesn't care if we go on vacation the day after he's let go, he doesn't want to commit to the vacation and then lose the job a couple of weeks beforehand.

    I've kind of checked into a couple of them -- IIRR there's the "we love" one, and a photo thread, and a room views photo thread. And I think there's now a "Bonnet Creek basics" thread, which would be nice because the other one is massive; we'll see if that one sinks or if it stays around as long as the photo threads have.

    Bonnet Creek looks fine, but going through RCI it looked like there would be a considerable difference in price (Bonnet Creek is lower than predicted while VV@P has gone up, so right now it's a difference of about $30/night), and I wasn't convinced I liked Bonnet Creek that much more for January. One of the reasons I really hope we get VV@P is that Mr. Cool feels strongly about being on a major bus route, which VV@P is, and Bonnet Creek isn't. I might have told him to just tough it out at Bonnet Creek if we were going in May, but for me the real draw at Bonnet Creek is the lazy rivers; with those potentially out of the picture, the bus routes thing becomes a much higher priority.

    Although neither one of them is going to please him as much as the last place did. *sigh* The Fountains is about halfway between Sea World and WDW, and would make us both the happiest on that front, but while the Fountains isn't tough to get into, units that sleep 8 at the Fountains are pretty thin on the ground. :sad1:

    If we can't get a condo close enough to WDW for well under $100/night, I may look into rental homes. Last I checked they were running a bit over $100/night, however I was looking into units available in May; I would guess we could get a better deal in January but I have no idea whether October is a good time to be looking into a January rental or not. Guess I better get posting to the Orlando board!

    Glad to hear it. :) If I write up the 2011 trip, we have even more pics from that one, because SeaWorld son had my camera on that trip and made pretty good use of it. I also like his pictures because he's more prone to take the kind of pics I would than his dad is. :p He sometimes takes pictures of his food! Unprompted! I actually had no idea other people did that until I saw the Dis dining reviews board. :rotfl:

    Although I think he does it more when he's bored than on principle, since most of them are when he's on the road. Not sure if he took any of the food at SeaWorld, but we'll see. I think restaurant photography is tough because so many places the table isn't well lit, and you don't want to be using your flash and bugging everyone around you. And now I think on it, I wonder if SeaWorld son is more likely to take pics of his food when he's got enough light. :scratchin
     
  12. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

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    I am not much of a foodie. I appreciate good food, but I don’t go into raptures about it. Well, admittedly I got a bit wound the first time I tasted a honeycrisp apple. :lovestruc And I’m picky – I cook at home, so I know how a lot of foods “should” be prepared (and, on occasion, I know I like it better prepared “wrong” :p ), and since we mostly eat at home, I mostly get my food right out of the oven/off the stove, so I get grumpy about food that’s not really fresh. And while I must have a fair tolerance for salt – I eat and enjoy American fast food, for crying out loud! – restaurant soup is almost always too salty for me. The restaurant experience loses a lot of zing when you’re sitting there thinking, “Man, I should have stayed home and made this myself —would have cost less money, and the food might have actually tasted good!”

    Geek dad thinks I’m a terrific cook, but he lost his sense of smell when he was three so don’t be thinking this means much! :p Since so much of taste is tied up in your sense of smell, he’s pretty much an “eat to live” guy. He doesn’t mind going out to eat, but it’s not something he particularly enjoys or wants to spend much money on. So I take a kid or two out to eat every month or so at home, and we eat fast food while traveling, and that’s about it for us when it comes to eating out. And I’m having a bit of a challenge getting a couple of my kids out of the “restaurants grandpa takes us to that serve food we get at home” rut. :rolleyes:

    So if I go out for TS at WDW, it’ll probably be with one or two of the older kids rather than a big family meal. And it’ll likely be outside the parks; I liked the SeaWorld cafeteria set up because you were in and out pretty quick. Less enthused about spending park time waiting on a waiter.

    None of these pics are mine – I’ve taken pics of my kids birthday cakes that I made, where I have total control of the light but I’ve never tried taking a food pic in a restaurant. I’m in awe of those who do it with good results. :worship:

    RESERVATION I WANT TO MAKE

    Wishes Dessert Party – I might be able to talk Geek dad into that but probably it’ll be the Hermit, Ballet Girl and myself. Ballet Girl really wanted to go to this in 2010, but for some reason I didn’t find out about it in time. :( And when I did hear about it, it was in the Theme Park board – don’t know how I missed it in the Restaurant one!

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/55159301@N05/5507774219/

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/74882933@N02/6826341945/



    TS RESTAURANTS I’M CONSIDERING

    Garden View Tea Room

    Everything at the Garden View Tea Room sounds great except for the potted meats. Not a potted meat fan. The problem with the Tea Room is that I have that kinda stuff at home all the time anyhow. Muffins, scones, tea sandwiches, strawberries with cream… that’s home food! On the one hand, I kind of think it would be nice to have a little bit of home food in pretty surroundings around about the middle of the vacation. OTOH, I’m used to super fresh muffins and scones and bread, and the one gripe I’ve seen about this place is that the bread or scones can be a little stale. Also, a big part of the charm of the place for me was the Old English Rose pattern tea set, and I have heard they changed over to plain white. :( So I'm waffling…

    Boatwrights

    I dunno what it is about Boatwrights, or why it appeals to me. It gets mostly bad reviews on the Dis, but the ones that go into detail, seems to me they mostly like the appetizers and desserts okay, and gripe about the entrée. And I always think, well, if I’m going to have desert, I tend to skip the entrée anyhow, so that doesn’t bother me much. Which is to say, I go looking for reasons to justify going. :rolleyes: Maybe I’ll just try to slip in and get a dessert there or something.

    The Wave

    The pan-seared sea scallops and the Decadent Flavors Dessert. And that is reason enough. ;) I never make sea scallops -- Geek dad thinks they're just another fish, only really expensive. *sigh* And since they're expensive, I don't want to encourage the kids to develop a taste for them by making them. :upsidedow I convinced most of the kids they didn't want to try shrimp by showing them the original animal, so I'm free to make shrimp dishes, but I don't think that'll work with sea scallops!

    And the Decadent Flavors Dessert is one of the rare combo desserts where all the possibilities sound like they'd be really good.

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/characterhunters/2569947880/


    Marrakesh

    Bunch of stuff looks good to me. Also – belly dancer. :teeth: I'm not actually much for ballet (happily, Nutcracker is one of the ones I most appreciate), but I do like most ethnic dances, and that includes belly dance. :)

    Biergarten

    Most of the time, someone brings up the subject of Biergarten and it just sounds noisy to me. But when it sounds fun, it sounds really fun. If we’re in Epcot one of those days when it sounds fun, I might try to go for it.

    Chefs de France

    This is another one like the Tea Room where there’s lots of stuff that appeals to me, but I make it at home a lot anyhow. Also, I am paranoid about “fine French restaurants”, because, while I tend to find restaurant soups oversalted anyway, the worst soup I ever had was some positively inedible Soupe a l’oignon gratinee. :sick: That is also the last soup I ever ordered in a restaurant for a lonnnng time, right up until I got some butternut squash soup at Mara a while back. Which I thought too sweet, but I’d predicted that and gotten something spicy to go with it and it was great. :)

    Whispering Canyon Cafe

    All the appetizers look good to me, and all the desserts except the S’more’s cheesecake. It seems really noisy, though, or at least there's a lot of noise from it in the lobby.




    THINGS I’VE HAD BEFORE AND WANT AGAIN

    Tie dyed Cheesecake at Pop Century

    Florida Strawberry Cupcake at the Contempo Café

    [​IMG]
    posted in this thread: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=41236357

    ^ This is like the best thing ever. I may even try to get the recipe next time out.

    Dole Whip

    [​IMG]

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/flashphase/6187658705/

    I take my Dole Whip straight, like this guy. :D

    Mickey Ice Cream Bar – yeah, it’s a Dove bar with ears, but I like Dove bars and rarely indulge. Plus the ears make it special. ;)



    CS THAT SOUNDS INTERESTING AT THE MK

    If we go two days I'll probably either head home for lunch (I like to take an early afternoon break anyhow), or hit a monorail resort for one of them, because the pickings are slim if you want something kinda different. Or I might break down and get a reservation at Liberty Tree Tavern, but that's a "lots of good stuff I make anyway" story again.

    Columbia Harbor House
    I like the Lighthouse Sandwich, but there’s not much point to getting it when I make it at home whenever I want one. If I want something dead basic I’ll get the Fried Shrimp Basket, otherwise I’ll probably get the Broccoli Peppercorn Salad, although I keep intending to try the chili so might go that route. Or both soup and salad – hey, if we’re there in January, I might actually be hungry!

    Kiosk
    Churro with chocolate. I know they're all over the place, but for some reason I've never had a churro.

    Sleepy Hollow has a “Liberty Swirl Slush” I’m considering – strawberry with blue raspberry. Although the “American Dream” at the Drum and Fife sounds similar but better.

    And I confess I like their funnel cakes. I never do anything deep fat fried at home, so aside from fries or onion rings (which we get on the road), deep fat fried food is “high holiday time” to me.



    CS THAT SOUNDS INTERESTING AT THE ANIMAL KINGDOM

    Not much that excites me. But we’re probably only spending one day there, and there’s enough for that, especially when you consider the Anandapur Tea Company. :cheer2:

    Africa

    Slow Roasted Pulled Beef Sandwich at Tamu Tamu – sounds interesting, and I’ve seen some positive reviews of it as well.

    Maybe something at Kusafiri’s, however the only cupcake there that really interests me (Zebra) got a poor review in the Cupcake thread. :(

    Asia

    Tea at Royal Anandapur Tea Company :cool1: Hot and cold and slushy tea opportunities. :thumbsup2 If I get overwhelmed, a Chai Latte is my choice. I think they have more than one possibility even there but if I get cornered I will eeeny meeny minie moe it.


    Kiosk
    Shangri-La Cooler, which is lemonade slush topped with blueberry syrup, or

    Berry Yeti Blast, which is strawberry slush topped with blueberry syrup.

    There’s also the Kali Rive Colada slush – Rum, pineapple, coconut, and they swirl chocolate through it. If they’re talking a swirl of chocolate soft serve, that sounds heavenly, but if they just mean a swirl of chocolate syrup, I can live without it. Maybe I should just buzz up some pina colada slush (I’ve got a recipe we like floating around), and a chocolate shake, and swirl them myself. Except I’d have to buy another container for the blender. Actually, I’ve got plenty of room to store a second one in the gonzo appliance center my dad made for me, which is not usually the case when I contemplate adding to my kitchen gadget collection. Hmmm.


    Flame Tree

    1/2 chicken – sounds dead basic but Flame Tree gets great reviews, and I'm not likely to want the Tamu Tamu sandwich twice in one day!

    Key Lime Mousse or Chocolate Mousse – also all over (well, the Key Lime less so than the Chocolate), but I’m getting desperate, here. Even checked out the Yak and Yeti TS menu, although I don’t want to make any ADRs, but that didn’t look worth the time and effort since it's so easy to get that kind of stuff around here. And really the menus on the internet are not terribly informative when it comes to pastries anyhow, so those are just-in-case thoughts there.

    Epcot CS gets its own post. :)
     
  13. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,560
    There are more things at Epcot than I could possibly eat in two, or even three, days, so that’s kinda cool.

    Sunshine Seasonings
    I’m not sure whether the strawberry shortcake looks interesting or deadly:

    [​IMG]
    from this thread: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=44031294

    Two problems with the strawberry shortcake. One, I have the recipe and know exactly why it’s bad for me (like the picture doesn’t give it away? :teeth: ). And two, if I have that, much less likely to have as much World Showcase decadence.

    The poster/photographer from the thread I just linked to had it for breakfast! :eek: :faint: And that’s a review thread that covers the 2011 F&W, btw. Certain people vacationing in October might be interested. ;)

    The other thing that interested me is the Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad. I can probably split the shortcake with the Hermit, but I’m gonna be on my own with the salad. :rotfl:


    Refreshment Port Kiosk

    Crispy Fried Shrimp and Tostones. I've considered making Tostones at home but have never actually gotten around to it... and probably won't. Our family doctor recommends we not eat junk food we don't make ourselves, and he's got a valid point because I almost never fry and otherwise make healthier junk food than most store bought stuff, however I always ignore him on vacation. ;)



    Rose and Crown

    I’m a “Canada first” Epcot tour-er. ;)

    The English Bulldog. Bangers and Mash on a bun with bacon and cheddar and mustard. Why in the world do they serve this with fries? Seems totally redundant to me. Another something that would seriously cut down my World Showcase snacking.

    [​IMG]
    EatingWDW Rose and Crown review

    I was intrigued by the “English Bay Sugar Cookie” – I thought it might be a sugar cookie with bay flavoring, which sounded different. And if I didn’t like it, I could probably foist it off on the Hermit. But after poking around a bit, I’m pretty sure it’s just a plain sugar cookie make by the English Bay company. :p



    Boulangerie Patisserie

    If we want real food, we might get a baguette and the assorted cheese plate here, which sounds good. Although cheese is pretty close to decadence, and we get a lot of artisan breads and cheeses at home anyhow (Chicago and its shops to the west, and lots of Amish shops to the east of us -- and of course of lot of the bread I bake is kinda artisan bread), so we’ll probably head to Morocco if we’re seriously hungry for real food and get sweet decadence instead of cheesy. But if we’re looking for sweet decadence, the possibilities are overwhelming! I have been known to walk into places like this, and it all looks so good that my brain shorts out and I just walk out again and get something familiar but boring somewhere else. Brain, why are you so stupid?

    So I’m planning ahead. If I can’t make up my mind, I’ll get the pithiver. Or the crème brule. Or the Napoleon. On second thought, maybe I just better let the Hermit choose. :upsidedow I don’t know precisely what she’ll go for, but I know she’ll get something chocolate. Although I’ve never had her pick two things (we usually each pick one and split them both in Disney bakery situations) – no idea if they’d both be chocolate. If she suggests two chocolate things, I think I’d switch out the second one for a Napoleon. Or the crème brule. Or the pithiver. :p

    The pithiver is at the top of this page I’m about to link to, the chocolate mousse further down – the more I consider it, the more I think that’d be a good combination to lobby for. Top of the next page in that thread is the Napoleon, which I think I’ll go for if the Hermit decides on a chocolate croissant. And if she goes for chocolate cake, I’ll get the crème brule. Problem solved!

    http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2863708&page=2



    Tangerine Cafe

    Shwarma Platter

    I’m thinking lamb, or the lamb and chicken combo. I’m not a huge lamb fan, but sometimes it’s a nice change and I haven’t had any in forever.

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickriver.com/photos/tags/tangerinecafe/interesting/

    And lately I’ve been consider the Mediterranean Sliders Combo as well.

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/7411850@N04/5334993956/


    But the sides are not exciting me. Well, the hummus looks fine, but there’s no bread or anything for dipping in it, and what is all that green stuff in the tabouleh? Parsley? Parsley and mint? Either way, not enthused. The tabouleh recipe I make is a recipe from a Lebanese guy, and they’re supposed to like a much higher proportion of parsley to wheat than most, but it doesn’t have anything like that much. The bulgur looks like something sprinkled over as a garnish, and I've seen some pics where there's even less. :confused3

    I guess the tabouleh in the shwarma platter looks just as bad, just hadn’t noticed it before. Bah. I won’t be getting the sliders unless they let me add a side of bread or something – don’t see it listed but I could ask. And the lentil salad is just plain ugly. Admittedly lentils are not naturally photogenic and it could be quite tasty for all I know. I’ve seen pics where it’s just lentils and onions; this one has that one tiny piece of tomato. Would it kill them to put a good handful of colorful veggies in there? :p


    Kabuki Café, Japan

    I’m debating about Kaki Gori. I’ve heard they switched from shave ice to crushed (the SnoCone kind). Bleah. If it’s gonna have the texture of a SnoCone, I’d rather have a slushy.

    Actually, if I don’t like the looks of the Kaki Gori, I might get a “Japanese soda, Ramune” – Ramune comes in something like 35 different flavors, but the only listing I can ever find for the Kabuki Café at Epcot is “Ramune.” I’m thinking I can safely say one flavor they won’t have is Octopus. :rotfl: And probably not Kimchee or curry, either. If they have Wasabi I am totally getting some (and if it’s really spicy the Hermit will finish it off for me). But if “Ramune soda” means just original flavor Ramune (lemon lime), as I suspect it does, I’ll probably pass.

    Depending on how snacky I feel, I’ll probably have the green tea and the azuki bean ice cream at either China or Japan, and I might have the ginger as well. I had ginger ice cream years back and didn’t like it, but that was pretty strongly flavored with fresh ginger – I’m guessing Epcot’s won’t be as strong. If it is, to the Hermit it goes!

    Fife and Drum Tavern

    I might try the American Dream; strawberry and blue raspberry slush with vanilla ice cream. But only if I can con them out of a spoon to go with it.


    Italy Kiosk

    If I didn’t get a soda in Japan, I might try one of the Italian sodas; they have Aranciata or Limonata, which is orange or lemon, so it’ll depend on who is around – I’m not a big orange soda fan but I could split the orange one with Geek dad. Orange soda and root beer (and drinks I make with fizzy stuff) are about the only sodas he’ll even touch.



    Sommerfest

    Might get a pretzel in Germany.



    Joy of Tea

    :love:

    I will definitely be getting something here. ;)

    I don’t like coffee or anything flavored with it, so one thing I know I won’t be getting is “Tipsy Ducks in Love”, which is tea and coffee with bourbon and chocolate, but isn’t that a great name, and doesn’t that sound terrific if you’re not a mocha-hater like myself?

    If I want cold tea, I’m thinking peach oolong. If hot, I’ll go for the Dragon Well, which is supposed to be a high quality green tea. It’s the same price as the decaffed green and all the rest, so I don’t expect it’s really that special, but I doubt I’ll care. Before I had kids, I used to get good quality loose tea and drink it straight and when I got the cheap stuff I noticed the difference, boy howdy. :snooty: After I had kids, I started doing bagged teas, and if it wasn’t up to par, I just threw sugar and sometimes even milk or cream in there and, although I still don’t like Lipton’s, I’m fine with some of the generic brands. If it’s at least brewed instead of powdered, I’m happy, pretty much. Having kids took the tea snob right out of me, I’m tellin’ ya. :rotfl:

    I have yet to eat at the Earl of Sandwich, but yesterday I brewed up a gallon of Earl’s Lemonade (Earl Grey tea with Lemonade), soooo good. I am drinking too much since I didn’t use decaf and I am going to regret it tonight, but right now, I’m lovin’ it. :cloud9:

    Where was I before I got derailed by the tea? Oh, yeah, Norway. Oh boy, Norway!



    Kringla Bakeri

    Kringla is about as bad as the Boulangerie Patisserie. If I want real food, I’ll go for the Norwegian Club. But when it comes to sweet snacks, who can possibly choose?

    Well, I do know I won’t be getting the lefse, because it could never compare to the nostalgic love of my Great Aunt’s lefse so it wouldn’t make me happy. And I make rice cream with their recipe – and love it – but it’d be silly to get that when we have it at home. Which, alas, does not limit my list of possibilities much. Berry Cream Puffs, Verdun’s Beste, Cloudberry Horn, Various Sweet Pretzels…

    My “if I can’t decide” treat used to be the school bread, which got almost uniformly positive reviews (and most of the negative reviews were, “I’d rather have x” instead of complaints about the quality). But then there were a flurry of posts on how WDW had changed the school bread recipe and it was suddenly dreadful. So right now, school bread is just another maybe. :( Maybe I’ll just make it at home and be done with it.

    So I guess my fall back is the almond sweet pretzel.



    Mexico Kiosks

    Churros with caramel sauce

    Paletas (Mexican fruit popsicles) – I’ll probably get cantaloupe or coconut.
     
  14. CatNipRules

    CatNipRules <font color=royalblue>Overplanner Extraordinaire..

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Messages:
    780
    We ate at Boatwrights on one of our first stays at Riverside. Although at the time they still served breakfast. Let me tell you, that was some of the best food I had on property. I fell in love with their strawberries and cream. It was heavenly!! :cloud9:

    We did eat there for dinner and I found that it was wonderful. Not nearly as bad as some people here make it out to be.

    Some of the places that you mentioned at the Magic Kingdom are our some of our families favorites. We are foodies and love to eat while we are on vacation.

    Columbia Harbor House. This one is probably DH's favorite counter service restaurant at MK. And he and DS are picky eaters. That's the one place that DH wants to eat on our upcoming trip.

    Even thinking of funnel cakes makes me laugh. DH and I went to a local fair and he bought a funnel cake for us to share. Well, I was taking a bite of mine and he said something funny and I laughed and powdered sugar went everywhere. LOL! I love funnel cakes.

    We happen to love Flame Tree. It's DH and my favorite counter service at AK. We eat there on every trip. The chicken there is actually pretty good. It's not too dry or too moist.

    We don't really do counter service at Epcot. We have quite a few table service places that we love there. LOL! We are trying Biergarten for the first time on our upcoming trip and we are doing Garden Grill again. I don't even know how many times we've done it before. At least once on every trip. LOL! It's our favorite place for Epcot. :rotfl2:

    I love the places that you have picked. I want to try a few of them myself. They are interesting, but with DH & DS it's hard to get them to go outside the box and try something new. LOL! My men are creatures of habit sometimes.
     
  15. BearcatsFan

    BearcatsFan <font color=green>we finally had a minute to breat

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2011
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    More food porn! :faint:
     
  16. lurkernj

    lurkernj DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    Messages:
    1,496
    OMG, love the food porn:dance3:

    I did the dessert party when I went on my trip with just DS (11 at the time). It was incredible. I love desserts, so we actually made this our dinner. It was so rich that we couldn't even eat all that much, but it was so good. I would love to do it again, but DH wouldn't appreciate it.

    I love Flametree too. I was very disappointed when they removed the corn muffin though. It seemed to round out the meal. The desserts are both good, not great, but good. I had the key lime just to have something different.

    I am intrigued by Boatwrights. Their menu seems decent, and the last few reviews I've read seem decent enough to make me want to try it. I suppose if something goes awry in our daily plans, that would make a good backup since we're at POR anyways.

    Gee after seeing your Wave info, makes me want to add that if I end up solo one night. I love scallops:lovestruc
     
  17. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,560
    Yeah, I've read a couple of surprised reviews where someone had a good meal there. Although I don't consciously remember it, I wonder if my Boatwrights thing goes back to the description in the Unofficial Guide, where they say there's a "boatwright's tool kid that contains condiments." That sounded really fun to me, for some reason, but now, even if I knew the fun box has gone the way of the Old Rose china at the Tea Room, I'm for some reason committed to Boatwrights. :upsidedow

    Also, I like Riverside. I didn't think much of the beignets there (might as well have been sopapillas for all of me), but that hasn't changed my opinion of the resort as well. :rolleyes: The Old Key West onion rings disappointed me, and I have crossed it off my list. :p But with Old Key West, I just didn't like the resort as a whole much for some reason. And it wasn't the "condo vibe" some people complain about, because I loved Saratoga Springs. :confused3

    Yah, that's happened to me. I have discovered that's less likely to happen if you get them with the strawberries and whipped cream. ;) Although really I like them both ways. :)

    :thumbsup2

    Sounds great!


    I figure I might as well give the CS a try first, especially since I don't want to have to commit to an ADR. Although most of the restaurants that particularly interest me, except maybe Chefs de France, you can sometimes get an ADR the night before or morning of, and I've also heard of people getting in with walk-ups. Garden Grill and Akershus interest me, but I'm not going to make an ADR so they're just not on my list. And I'd love to go to Cinderella's Royal Table, but everytime I about talk myself into it, I run across another negative review. I'm willing to pay that much for a magical experience, but in my world, magical experiences don't include mediocre food. :p

    Yah, the more I read the Dis, the more I realize how lucky I am that Geek dad will try about anything I set in front of him. And he's only once said, "Would it be okay if you never made that again?" :rotfl: But of course he can't taste a whole lot of it, and I don't set stuff in front of him I know he hates (he doesn't like spicy-as-in-chilies food). Still, he's pretty adventurous, and so is Sea World son. Mr. Cool, not so much. :rolleyes: Although none of them are as bad as Warrior Girl, who practically lives on pb&j. :sad2:

    I never made a big issue of food with my kids and let them eat what they wanted, so long as they stayed out of the kitchen when I was cooking, meaning they could make a sandwich or track down some leftovers if they didn't like what I'd made for dinner, which worked out pretty well with all the rest, but it takes a bit more effort with Warrior Girl. :sad2: We have had pancakes about once a week for years (we have them for supper since we don't usually breakfast as a family), and she had them with cinnamon and sugar right up until a year or so back when she helped a friend of ours with sugaring off their maple syrup. Now she likes maple syrup -- but only the real stuff. Which when we buy it from our friends is pretty reasonable, but when they run out for the year, Geek dad hits the grocery store and groans, "Why did we convince her it tastes good?" :lmao:
     
  18. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,560
    :rotfl:

    In retrospect I realize the pictures are nearly all desserts. :scratchin Desserts are prettier, that's what. I look at even carefully prepared entrees, like at California Grill or Victoria and Albert's, and about half the time I think, "That is just one hot mess." :p And if they're not decorated, tends to be a bunch of greys and browns and bleah colors. If my nose didn't have such major input, sometimes I'm not sure if I'd eat main dishes at all. Well, maybe steak. I like mine pretty rare, and they have that nice pink once you cut into them. Or prime rib, ditto. And shrimp. But aside from that... :upsidedow

    On the whole, veggie dishes and desserts are so much more visually attractive. :)
     
  19. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,560
    Yeah, I can't get away with that -- gotta have real food first. OTOH, I'm totally good with evening snacks, and could probably eat enough of them to make a meal. ;)

    Geek dad's always picking up decadence in an evening run to the store, and then not letting anyone have any when he gets home, because he doesn't like sweets after seven or so. He says they keep him up! :confused3 So no dessert party for him. :p

    :thumbsup2

    I find that, if it's something I have all the time anyway, it needs to be prepared to my tastes (as opposed to perfectly prepared ;) ) for me to want to eat it. So I tend to go for "something different" when I eat out.

    Let me know what you think if you go, and ditto on Boatwrights. I think I heard Boatwrights gets really loud the later you're there; I was going to go on a non-park day and try to get in at five if I go at all.
     
  20. BearcatsFan

    BearcatsFan <font color=green>we finally had a minute to breat

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2011
    Messages:
    8,097
    The photos are BEAUTIFUL! I was drooling the entire time ... seriously. :rolleyes1 I just wish I could have that strawberry shortcake from Sunshine Seasons. *sigh* Might have to get it and eat just one bite. :thumbsup2

    Your PTR is a feast for the eyes in every sense of the phrase. :teeth:
     
  21. shalom

    shalom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,560
    Yeah, did I say we’d do Walmart in the morning? In my vernacular, “getting going in the morning” – especially when we have to buy stuff to make lunch! – means “get out the door prior to 10:00 a.m.” In Geek dad’s vocabulary it means, “walk out the door before 11:59.” This was morning by Geek dad’s definition.

    A friend of mine who hits Disney at least once a year particularly recommended the Walmart on Vineland as having lots of cool Disney stuff for cheaps. It doesn’t look that far away from the Fountains on the map, and it’s actually closer than the other one he went to, but Geek dad was grumbling about the distance long before we got there. I think Geek dad really needed to have lunch before we went to get the groceries for lunch, if you know what I mean.

    Normally, I’m the one saying, “Walmart? Do we have to?” I don’t like Walmart because, whenever I shop there, I gotta go somewhere else as well, in order to get stuff like tahini and whole wheat pastry flour and a lot of the things I consider staples, and I am a One Stop Shopper when it comes to groceries. But I still liked this Walmart better than Geek dad did.

    We walked in and there was a big beach towel display and I said, “You know, the kids really need new beach towels.” And he had to admit that was true, but now we were right off the list, first thing. They had Disney towels, but Ballet Girl picked out one dolphin towel and, after much waffling between the other dolphin towel and a shark towel, Warrior Girl went for the dolphins as well. SeaWorld son was sad, because he had gotten a new beach towel from his godmother recently (also sea-themed, but admittedly not as cool as the ones we were looking at), meaning Geek dad wasn’t going to pony up for his towel, and he already had plans for spending every cent he had at SeaWorld. So no new towel for SeaWorld Son.

    While the girls picked out their towels, I got my glasses fixed at the little optometrist shop there. They found me a screw that fit and got me all set and didn’t charge me a thing, so that was nice. Then we went looking for the Disney section, and while there was a nice selection of clothes, I kinda think it was less that it had the biggest Disney selection in town, and more that it had the biggest Disney selection of stuff my friend likes to get. But we managed to find a few things.

    I got a Tinkerbell mug! Aside from pins, I hardly ever get Disney stuff for myself because I’m so picky and can never find anything I want bad enough to justify finding the space for it. I’m not a huge fan of the “new” Tinkerbell (although I like Silvermist and Iredessa a lot – consistency, what’s that? :upsidedow ), and I think the old Tinkerbell has some attitude issues I would prefer not to emulate, so I don’t like a lot of Tinkerbell stuff, however I do collect pins with Tink and castles because I grew up with Walt Disney’s show, and I like Disney’s Peter Pan and this mug ties back to the original movie and, I dunno, for some reason I love it.

    So hubby came home last night to find me taking pictures of my mug, watched for a minute, and says, “Those aren’t going to come out.” I juuuust about channeled my grandma and snapped “Oh, go pee up a rope!” (which was grandma’s predictable response to anything grandpa said she didn’t appreciate), but I resisted. And I was glad I did! When he uploaded them to his computer (mine won’t talk to the camera so it has to go through his computer, through the server, to mine, so he always sees them sooner than I do), I was totally vindicated, because he thought they looked great. I was less enthused about them, but they’re clear enough anyhow.

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    If you can look past the startlingly pink bear, you may be able to see the Tinkerbell t-shirt Ballet Girl got:

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    She also got two t-shirts based on the Tim Burton Alice in Wonderland – this one with the cat:

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    She wore the third one, which remained her favorite, that Thursday to SeaWorld. Although I had to mess with color so you can see her face (she's my most faithful reader here, I suspect ;) ):

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    And she loves that shirt so much, she made me take a better picture of it when she wore it out. It isn't as clear as I'd like and it's kinda faded, but that's closer to the color it's supposed to be:

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    And while I'm sharing her favorite things, might as well do the two pins on her hat on the SeaWorld pic -- the Pirates of the Caribbean one we got at the Disney outlet store:

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    And Cinderella in her pink dress -- Ballet Girl loves the pink Cinderella dress. The stepmother pin that came with it was traded away right quick! Not a fan of the villians, that Ballet Girl.

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    His Disney Duty done for the moment, Geek dad happily left his least favorite Walmart in the world and we went back to the condo and had pizza. Then, after Geek dad had rested from his labors (shopping with the family is hard!), we headed for Downtown Disney.

    Geek dad was actually looking forward to Downtown Disney, because there’a a Lego store. Shortly after he set up his house with all his junk, someone broke into it. :sad1: When a friend heard about it and asked, “So, did they get away with much?” Geek dad replied, “Just a couple of cameras. Fortunately, they didn’t find the Lego.” :upsidedow So that tells you what he thinks of Lego.

    However, while doing this write up, I remembered I had him take bunches of pictures of Downtown Disney, only I couldn’t find them, and since he can’t find them either, he’s starting to think the card may have been in a camera that was stolen. ARGH. He doesn't really care because he was only taking pictures at my direction and there were none of the kids, but I was kind of disappointed.

    So we parked down by Disney Quest and then took the boat to the other end. I love Disney boats. :goodvibes I like riding in boats and actually quite like canoing, however I hate being in the sun. I'm not even that happy being out on a cloudy day; I want shade. OTOH, I don't want to be down in the middle on the lower deck on one of those touristy boats where the upper deck is open and the lower shaded, so I just don't go much. But Disney shuttle boats are a great size and there's a shade but you're right by a window and, I dunno, they're just one of my favorite things and this was my first ride on one. :cloud9:

    Geek dad either likes boat rides or is smart enough to just smile and nod at my enthusiasm, but certain children are all, "Okay, so we parked down there when we wanted to be up here because you wanted that boat ride? Whatever, mom."

    We actually didn't wander Downtown Disney much, but we did spend a fair while at the Lego store and area. We had to check out the Lego Sea Monster (whose name is "Brickley", btw), of course. He was really faded but we enjoyed him anyhow:

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    from here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/35182517@N03/4480466340/in/photostream/

    And of course I forgot to ask Geek dad to take pics of it again in 2011, but I can at least report it is now all bright and colorful again.

    I loved the “windows” in the Lego store, which I think are gone now, but of course I can’t find my favorite in a format I may put in the thread, however here is a link to a lovely big copy of Sydney:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/1stwave/4882878015/sizes/l/in/set-72157624704939784/

    It’s the dog sled, I don’t know why that cracks me up, but it does.

    If you care to click through to the larger copies, he’s got all of them here:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/1stwave/sets/72157624704939784/detail/

    And we hit the World of Disney store because I was in search of Disney earrings. But really, what I wanted is essentially Disney pins for the ears -- I wanted bright, dangly enameled Disney characters. What I found on the Internet for the longest time was just silver this and cubic zircona that -- I like gold better than silver, but even so, the only "plain" gold earrings I have are black hills gold, meaning they're gold and green and red! I was looking for colors, people, and not finding them. :mad:

    Then, I found exactly what I wanted on E-Bay. This guy:

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    Okay, so admittedly we're not talking bright colors like blue or green or purple, but Thumper's personality is colorful enough his coat can be a little plain, IMHO. I was so excited to find these! I think the same seller had another set of someone I was less enamored of, which I didn't buy, but the next time I went looking, back to nothing again. :sad1: Nothing direct from Disney, nothing on e-Bay, nothing. So I hoped I'd have better luck at the store, but, even though I pointed to Thumper and asked, the clerk was no help at all.

    That's because my Thumper is actually a charm someone strung into earrings on their own. Took me over two years to figure that out! :blush: Finally someone said something on the Dis that got me looking in the right direction, and I tracked a bunch of charms down. Now I'm eying the Marie charms on Your WDW Store, and thinking about taking up jewelry making. :scratchin I keep searching e-Bay, hoping that same seller will come back, but all I ever find are a bunch of people selling earrings made with cheap Disney knock offs. :mad: So I'm thinking either I make my own, or I'm not going to get any. *sigh*

    I think we all left without buying anything (Geek dad drooled over the Lego, but he only gets his on sale). So we took the boat back, saw a janitor draw a Mickey Mouse on the side walk, and headed home. Ballet Girl and I had to rest up, because Wednesday, we were going to the Magic Kingdom! And Geek dad had to rest up, because he was going to have to entertain the troops. Heh.
     

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