The Darling Family June 2010 Trip Report: When are the Parents Showing Up?11/5 New TR

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by dismagiclover, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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    We all awoke bright and early to the sounds of the clickity clack of the train. Everyone seemed in good spirits though maybe a bit groggy. I sent each of the kids to the changing rooms to get ready for the day. I did a quick change myself and tried to make myself presentable. Then we headed back up to the dining car for breakfast. It was once again a very pleasant meal as we watched the world whiz by. No "apple juice" this time;)

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    It was obvious from the vegetation that we were in Florida. We headed back to our car after breakfast and packed up our stuff. Around 9:00 we pulled into the station in Sanford Florida and disembarked. We then headed to the waiting room to wait for our car. After about 25 minutes they called our number. We went out, picked up the car and we were on our way! After maybe an hour drive we saw this wonderful site:cheer2::cheer2:

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    We followed the signs and made our way to Old Key West

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    This was our first time staying here. We’d never been to the resort before so everything was new to us. I'll give details about it throughout the trip report, but for the moment I'll just say I would definitely stay here again. It's such a relaxing place to be. We parked the car and went to check in. It was still early so we weren’t expecting the room to be ready. We are DVC members, but for this stay we rented points from another member. The check in went smoothly, but our room was not ready. They took my number and said they would text me when the room became available.

    So we hopped back into the car and headed over to Epcot. It was nice having the car this trip and only taking Disney buses if we wanted to. We arrived at Epcot and headed to the ticket window to trade in our GAD vouchers and buy a 1 day pass for Michael because he wasn’t old enough for GAD . I have to apologize for the lack of pictures during this section of the report. I still wasn’t entirely in trip report mode plus I was a bit groggy from the previous night’s train ride. So after acquiring our 1 day passes (which we would later upgrade) we headed into the park and straight for the Land. It was a bit after 11:00 and I was hoping there would still be Soarin fastpasses available that weren’t for too late. Alas, this was not to be. The fastpass time was around 5:30. My parents were flying in around 4:30 and we were planning meeting them back at the resort when they arrived. Sunshine Seasons was open and calling to us so we decided to have some lunch. I told the kids we could go on Living with the Land after lunch and they pointed out fastpasses were available for 30 minutes later. Perfect. So I grabbed some fastpasses before getting lunch. We had a Sunshine Seasons meal. I don’t remember what I had, but I’m sure it was tasty. Sunshine Seasons always is. The food here is really a nice change for a counter service, but the area is always so crowded and it’s often difficult to find a table. Anyway after lunch we hopped onto our first ride of the trip: Living with the Land.

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    After we went on our garden tour we decided to head over to see Nemo and his friends.

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    After a long walk through an empty queue we hopped on our clamshells and found Nemo. Then since it was hot outside and it was a crowded time of the day we decided to head upstairs and spend some time in the aquarium. Here are some of the things we saw. Sorry for the poor picture quality of my point and shoot.

    Can you find the Mickey?

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    There is a sea turtle in there.

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    I think there are sharks in this one.

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    This appears to be a Coral Reef

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    And here are three little monkeys looking at some fish:cutie:

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    We actually spent quite a bit of time here and the kids enjoyed it. My plan this trip was to avoid commando and we were doing it. We had no specific plans. Anyone want to guess where we headed next?

     
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  3. Queenofallthings

    Queenofallthings DIS Veteran

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    :woohoo::woohoo:Another update:woohoo::woohoo:

    I can't wait to hear all about OKW...that resort has always been of interest to me so I can't wait to hear your take on it!
     
  4. Planning fanatic mom

    Planning fanatic mom DIS Veteran

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    I'll take a guess. How about Turtle Talk with Crush or Spaceship Earth?
     
  5. wdwgirl03

    wdwgirl03 <font color=red>I'm just a big Disney Freak! :-)<b

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    Gotta love seeing the WDW arch. :goodvibes

    I am curious to hear what you have to say about OKW. We have not stayed there yet but would like to so we can stay at all the DVC resorts. It does seem like a nice place.
     
  6. letstalkboutdisney

    letstalkboutdisney Mouseketeer

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    I'll guess test track
     
  7. jngwright

    jngwright DIS Veteran

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    Great start to your TR! I am curious to hear all about OKW. We are doing a big group trip next year (we are going to celebrate our 11th anniversary on 11/11/11 with as many of our wedding party and their families as can come) and I am considering renting a villa at OKW. It looks so pretty!

    Are you loving the Twilight series? I never thought I would get into it, but couldn't put the books down!

    Did you find traveling with the kids alone to be a great experience? I loved it-it was a totally different dynamic! Of course we missed DH, but I will never regret having that mom and kid trip:love:

    Can't wait to read more!!:thumbsup2
     
  8. creativeamanda

    creativeamanda <font color=darkorchid>One slithering around on me

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    Every other trip we start off at Epcot. I love it there--especially the World SHowcase. In December when I was alone, I spent a great deal of time in Epcot's WS. I also love Living with the Land--it is such a relaxing ride and calming for the kids who have usually been going all morning before we get to it.

    Great start!
     
  9. praisehisname

    praisehisname DIS Veteran

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    Love this picture! Sounds like you're having a nice, leisurely start to your trip. Did you hit Turtle Talk next?
     
  10. Happy Elf

    Happy Elf DIS Veteran

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    Can't wait to hear about OKW. Love the picture of the kids watching the fish. I keep telling myself we need to slow down on our next trip...we'll see if that happens?? ;)
     
  11. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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  12. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for the report of the autotrain. I'm very tempted, although I would choose to do it on the way home. I figure driving down you're excited about the trip but driving home you're sad! ;)
    We've never stayed at OKW so I can't wait to hear the full report!!!

    Amanda
     
  13. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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    I think OKW would be a great place for a large group. The units are big and the resort is a great place to relax away from the hustle bustle of the parks. It is a beautiful resort, though it is quite spread out so you'd want to make sure all of your families were in the same area if you could.
    I am enjoing the Twilight series. I still haven't read Breaking Dawn. I was waiting for it to come out in paperback, but I'll probably break down and get it in hardcover. It's great summer reading.
    I really did enjoy the trip with just the kids. It was a totally different dynamic. We were really laid back and we had very few must do's. Especially when Wendy was on her cruise and it was just the boys and I. We had a great time! I'd love to do it again, but it might be tough to talk DH into it. I think he felt bad missing all the fun.

    We do seem to spend a great deal of time in Epcot. It's a park where there is always something to do and really seems to handle crowds well. So even if you can't get on the big rides (Soarin' and Test Track) you can always stop by Nemo, Figment, or Innoventions. Plus you have the World Showcase. We love it.

    I love that picture too! Turtle Talk is a good guess, but I couldn't talk the kids into it.

    OKW is such a relaxing, kick back place. There are a few disadvantages (like no walking to any park), but the positives definitely outweigh the negatives. I really enjoyed the slower pace of this trip. We've now been often enough that I don't have to commando anymore and it's very nice.
     
  14. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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    There would be definite advantages to doing it on the way home. One would be you'd probably be more tired so sleeping would be easier. This worked for us because DH was with us for the drive back. Plus we stopped at the beach on the way home. OKW is a lovely resort. Very laid back and it seemed a world away from the parks. Staying there was almost like a vacation from the vacation if you know what I mean.
     
  15. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Having 2 drivers makes a huge difference! I assumed that a sleeper car would be necessary (which makes the cost prohibitive!). Glad to hear that's not true!
    We stayed at SSR last year and found it very relaxing, too. The only downside was that we didn't have a car!

    Amanda
     
  16. Stefy

    Stefy Fantasising of our next DCL & WDW Trip

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    Yay you started and I am unfashionably late (my apologies)!

    Great start :thumbsup2 The auto train sounded like a fun adventure, bet you are glad you decided to do this instead of the drive :) How weird that there was wine on the table already, esp when you had kiddilywinks with you.

    Loving the aquarium pics, always fun and relaxing to watch the fishys :)
     
  17. BippityBoo

    BippityBoo DIS Veteran

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    I'm here!!!! Sorry for taking so long---I was at the beach! The kids looked SO excited to be going to WDW--how cool that you got to take a train!! Can't wait to hear all about your trip-especially PL and Harry Potter :goodvibes
     
  18. FairyGodmotherJen

    FairyGodmotherJen DIS Veteran

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    OKW was wonderful when we stayed there back in 2000. If I get my way and we rent DVC points for our next stay, it's pretty darn high on my list. Glad you enjoyed it!

    How awesome that you were able to get an early start! I'm not sure what to guess, though, since my original guesses have all been guessed and rejected. ;) Figment, maybe?

    As for the Twilight series - I refused to read them for the longest time, and then they started showing up on my students' desks (I teach fourth grade, mind you! :scared1:) I decided that I needed to know what these were, and even if they were appropriate. I ended up enjoying them (definitely some more than others) much more than I thought. You're right - they're really good summer reads! I still have issues with my 10-year-old students reading them, however. I ended up telling one of my kids to leave Breaking Dawn at home. You'll understand when you read it...:sad2:
     
  19. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

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    Great update!!:thumbsup2 YAY! for arriving and seeing the Disney sign!!Aww...love that sight!!!:cloud9: It sounds like a nice relaxing start to your trip! Living with the Land is another favorite of ours! And I love the shot of three kids looking in the aquarium...so cute!!:goodvibes Can't wait to hear more!!popcorn::
     
  20. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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    While a sleeper car would have been nice we did just fine without it. I don't know if I would have enjoyed OKW so much if we didn't have a car. The buses were a bit of a pain because they went all the way around the resort before heading to the park. Hopping in the car that was sitting right outside your door was easy peasy:goodvibes

    The Auto Train was definitely a good choice. I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks it is a bit strange to have the wine sitting right on the table before anyone even arrives.

    You're definitely excused for a beach trip! The train was a fun way to travel. PL should be up before too long. We did that on Day 4. Harry Potter won't be for quite a while since that was at the end of the trip.

    Figment is a good guess, but no. My kids don't like that ride all that much. That part when the air blows out suddenly makes them nervous. I completely agree with you that Twilight is not appropriate for 4th graders. Wendy just finished 4th grade and has asked me about the books. I told her I think she should be 12 or 13 before she reads them. I know there is nothing explicit in the books, but there is more angst in those books than in a Harlequin romance:rolleyes1 I suppose that is why young teens like them so much.

    Most of the trip we did a pretty good job of relaxing. It's easier when we know we'll be back soon. I like the aquarium shot too.
     
  21. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

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    So I asked the kids where to next and Wendy immediately piped up with “Club Cool.” (No one guessed it.) So Club Cool it was! We made the quick walk over and both the boys passed on a drink. They aren’t big soda drinkers. Wendy and I both had a small glass of Costa Rica, but no one was falling for the Beverly trick again. (We’d tried it last summer.) So then the kids all agreed they were up for a little shopping. We headed to Mousegears where they all promptly scattered in three directions. So I spent much of my time doing my darndest to keep track of them. Sometime during the craziness I snapped this shot.

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    Eventually they all ended up gathered around the pins. All three of them have really gotten into the pin collecting thing. I bought a lot from Mousepinsonline before we left so they each had some traders. But of course they were most interested in the pins they could buy. I told them all we weren’t buying anything on the first day because I was sure we’d be back and eventually dragged them all out of Mousegears.

    About this point everyone started clamoring for ice cream so we headed over to the ice cream shop by the Character Connections. The line was quite long and we weren’t going to be in the park too much longer. So the kids all agreed we could get ice cream back at the hotel. (Remember this later.)

    We’d been in the park a while and had only been on a couple of rides so they were all itching to head to Spaceship Earth. We jumped in a short line and before we knew it we were taking a journey through time. Then we were seeing our future. It looks like a good one:thumbsup2

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    Obviously I rode with Michael.

    After exiting the ride Wendy and John spent some time saving the energy supply of some city or other. (Or whatever it is you do during this game.)

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    By this point the skies were looking very threatening and thunder was beginning to rumble. So we decided to head out. We still hadn’t received our text telling us our room number, but it was after 2:30 so I was hoping it would come very soon. We had one more very important thing to take care of before we left the park. We headed into guest relations where we used our 1 day GAD passes toward these beautiful babies.

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    They may not look like much, but these are Annual Passes!:banana::banana::banana: We are now official Disney World Annual Passholders! It’s a first for the Darling Family and very exciting. We plan on using them in October and January! The CM that helped us was very kind and reprinted John’s when he ended up with Minnie. Then she printed Wendy’s three times so she could finally get Minnie. Michael was super lucky he got Pluto on the first try. Mine is Minnie too (I would have taken anyone.) John wanted Donald, but was happy with Goofy. Much better than Minnie for him. So we happily left guest services with the passes in hand.:cheer2:

    The thunder was rumbling, the skies were darkening up. There was just one more thing I wanted to do before we left the park. I wanted a Photopass picture of all of us with the ball. I’d prepurchased the CD and this would be our only time all of four of us would be at the front of Epcot. Would we get the picture before the skies opened up?
     

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