2 kids, 2 dogs, 1200 miles: 2 weeks and 2 birthdays in Florida - COMPLETED!

FreezinRafiki

Cold enough for ya?
Joined
Apr 16, 2009
Wow! I missed the Animal Kingdom installments and the Hollywood Studios installment. Lucky you seeing Pocahontas twice in one day. :thumbsup2 Of course, you got some great pictures at Animal Kingdom but my favorite was the one of Madison on Kali River Rapids.

I love the Hollywood Studios character pictures. Sooooo many!
She can be a real ham for the camera, can't she?

Sounds like you had a great day between Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios! You hit the character jackpot at both parks!!! Looking forward to hearing about Madison's birthday.
Oh yeah. The kids were just loving it. Except for the bad guys, of course. ;)

Thanks for the info! We'll look for him next week!

/me scribbles notes onto "Disney must-do list"...
How long is your list?


I should have the next update up today. It's pretty short because it was an off day. :sad1:
 

Captain_Oblivious

DIS Dad #257, Galactic Salad Dodger
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Great pictures! Just catching up after my week away. Did the you feel a rift in the space/time continuum when you took that picture with Rafiki?
 

mom2shayleeandlogan

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jun 24, 2009
:goodvibesHi I found your Tr! I live not to far from Racine, but in Il. You are very brave driving all the down, but it seems like it went good. Enjoying reading about your trip,can't wait to read more!
 

FreezinRafiki

Cold enough for ya?
Joined
Apr 16, 2009
Great pictures! Just catching up after my week away. Did the you feel a rift in the space/time continuum when you took that picture with Rafiki?
Welcome back! There was no rift, just a general feeling that everything was finally right with the world again. :cloud9:

:goodvibesHi I found your Tr! I live not to far from Racine, but in Il. You are very brave driving all the down, but it seems like it went good. Enjoying reading about your trip,can't wait to read more!
Welcome aboard! We were pretty nervous starting out, but yes, it went very well. :banana: One of the best investments we made was an Ipass to get around Illinois. It sure was fun blowing through the Ipass lanes at 60mph while 35 cars were lined up to drop their quarters in the little baskets every few miles!
 

FreezinRafiki

Cold enough for ya?
Joined
Apr 16, 2009
Short update for today because it was an off day. We got in pretty late last night from Fantasmic.
Bambi's dad and I had an early tee time at Cleveland Heights Golf Club in Lakeland. It's a city-run course with 27 holes. Their weekday special was 18 holes, a cart and lunch for $28. And wasn't just half a stale sandwich and a bag of chips - it was 3 pieces of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans, corn bread and a drink. Now that's a good deal.

I only took one picture of the course, and it was from the balcony of the restaurant. Trust me, you don't see palm trees on courses in Wisconsin.



Luckily, Grandpa and I have the same philosophy on golf. We enjoy spending a beautiful day outside on a golf course. In case you're wondering what I scored on this day, I shot an "enough". As in, I was good enough to want to go golfing again. :rotfl2:

I won't go into too many boring details, but there is one interesting story from the day. We were probably on the 8th hole, and the right side of the fairway is lined with middle class houses. If anyone has golfed before, this is basically just a magnet for golf balls. I sliced one shot into someones backyard and we heard a dog start barking. We decided that it was better than yipping, so we kept going. Grandpa's next shot took off right at some guy's screen porch. We lost track of the ball, but as hard as it was hit, it had to have ripped a hole in the screen. As we walked past his house, he came outside. He grabbed his golf bag and opened his back gate and walked out onto the course. He must not have noticed Grandpa's shot, because we simply exchanged pleasantries as he walked up to the clubhouse.

We finished the front nine and went inside to grab a drink (it was 10am and already 90°!) We go back outside, and the starter points us to the 10th hole. Who's standing there, teeing off? Yup, the guy we nearly decapitated 15 minutes earlier.

Since the course was pretty empty, we joined him for the back nine. We got to chatting and found out his name was Bob, he was retired, and his doctor told him to get some exercise, so he usually walks 6 holes a day. Several times he mentioned how he never has to buy golf balls - he just picks them up from his back yard. Do you have any idea how hard it is to not burst out laughing while trying to swing a golf club?:rotfl:

So Grandpa and I are sharing a cart while Bob is walking and carrying his bag. We offered several times to give him a ride, but he kept refusing. By the 18th hole, we were worried that we would have to give him CPR. Luckily, we finished the round with no medical emergencies. He really was a nice guy and in quite good shape for being that age. I don't think I'd be able to schlep a golf bag for 9 holes in that heat even at my age.

We headed home and jumped straight into the pool to cool off. I could get used to days like that.:thumbsup2

Bambi, Grandma and the kids spent the morning at a park with one of Grandma's co-workers and her daughter. They hit a toy store on the way home and picked up a big Fisher Price slide for the pool.





That's really about it for the day. Up next: Madison turns 5 at the Magic Kingdom. A Bibbity Bobbity Boutique make over and dinner at 1900 Park Fare.
 

dvczerfs

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 14, 2008
:thumbsup2 i love palm trees on the course, its easier to find your ball under them!! we have pine trees all over.
 
  • itJeff

    I'm just not so sure how well this plan was though
    Joined
    Jun 6, 2009
    Funny story! DW has some cousins that moved next to a golf course. I told their kids that they should collect all the golf balls they find in their yard. Then they could take them up to the club and sell them back to the people that lost them. Funny this is, they actually did it! :lmao:

    I love the pics of the 'water slide'. Great idea! :thumbsup2
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    :thumbsup2 i love palm trees on the course, its easier to find your ball under them!! we have pine trees all over.
    What's worse is cottonwoods. Hard to find your little white ball with all that little white cotton ball looking stuff all over the ground! :mad::rotfl2:

    Sounds like it was a great day off for everyone! :thumbsup2
    This is the first vacation that we actually scheduled down time. It's hard when you're only there for a week and want to do everything. If you have the time, I highly recommend it - it really recharges your batteries for the parks.:cool1:

    I love the pics of the 'water slide'. Great idea! :thumbsup2
    Bambi went to Toys-R-Us to try and find one. It was the middle of October in Florida, 90° out, and they had put all of the "summer" toys in storage already. Luckily, a nice manager went into the back for her and dug one up. I would think that in Florida, you could sell summer toys all year round. Who knew?:confused3
     

    DisneyFed

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 23, 2008
    I've played that course before...:thumbsup2:thumbsup2

    Man, I wouldn't even consider walking that area in that kind of heat...you look like you jumped in a pool after about 45 minutes:rotfl2:
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    I've played that course before...:thumbsup2:thumbsup2

    Man, I wouldn't even consider walking that area in that kind of heat...you look like you jumped in a pool after about 45 minutes:rotfl2:
    Bob was talking about how the course was is such rough shape. I was in awe at how nice it was. Compared a course that has to suffer through a Wisconsin winter every 6 months, this was like playing Augusta National. :cool2:
     
  • Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257, Galactic Salad Dodger
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    I'm impressed you found an excuse to play golf. I usually can't get away when we have the kids with us.
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    Unfortunately now, we're a full month removed from the events that occurred on this trip. Some of the details may be lost to the fog bank that is my memory, but I'll do my best. Other things I'll just make up completely. :rotfl:

    Facebook, 10/15/2009, 6:47am: Today is Madison's 5th Birthday. She has an appointment at the Bibbity Bobbity Botique this morning. Evan's been asking for 3 days to ride Goofy's Barnstormer again, so I think we'll be doing that a few times while the girls to their girly stuff. Dinner with Cinderealla and Prince Charming this evening at 1900 Park Fare.

    Unfortunately, Grandma and Grandpa - along with Bambi's brother - are in the middle of remodeling their house. Today was the only day at Grandma and him could meet with several of the potential granite counter people. Just about the time we got to MK, she had to leave. She would meet up with us again later in the day.

    Madison's appointment was at 11:00am, and we arrived about 9:30 or so at the Magic Kingdom. Madison was dressed as her favorite Princess of the day (it changes daily!), Jasmine.



    Funny side story here. We were down last March and waiting outside of Akershus to be seated. Madison is across the path looking at one of the gift shops at some Jasmine costumes. All the ones that they had were too small for her. She takes one, walks up to a Cast Member working there and asks if they have this in her size! She was 4! How's that for a natural born shopper?

    Anyway, Grandma and Grandpa got her the outfit this past summer, so this trip was the first time she got to wear it. We found the sandals (you can see these in a later picture) at Wal-Mart for a few bucks, and they look like they were custom made for the costume. The crown was found earlier in the week at Downtown Disney to complete the look. She loves the way all of the jewels tink together when she walks!

    After a quick picture in front of the castle, we headed off to Adventure land to ride Aladdin's carpets. The rest of the family got loaded and I walked around to get some nice pictures of them flying. Who do I find behind the carpet ride, but Aladdin and Jasmine. Deciding that Madison might want her picture taken with Jasmine, I get in line. The attendant immediately closes the line behind me. Perfect timing. But holy heck was this line hot! There was no shade while waiting in line, it was only 10am and already in the upper 80s.
    Jasmine told Madison that she was just like the little sister that she always wanted, and told Madison that she should introduce herself to everyone today as "Jasmine's little sister". Madison being Madison, she did. Every chance she got.



    We had kind of decided that we would go easy on the characters today and try to focus more on the rides and attractions. As we walked from Adventure Land to Frontier Land, we saw Jessie and that plan was out the window.:rotfl2:



    By now it was getting close to Madison's appt, so we headed towards the castle. Silly us, we forgot to get Splash Mountain Fast Passes. We had time to ride the Carousel and get a quick picture with the Fairy Godmother, who was just outside the castle near Cinderella's Wishing Fountain.



    Taking a quick break to admire the statue before her appointment.



    Bambi and Madison headed into BBB, Grandpa went off do browse some shops, and Evan and I headed towards Toontown to ride the Barnstormer. After a front-row seat on the coaster, we climbed aboard the Walt Disney World Rail Road to go back to Frontier Land and Splash Mountain Fast Passes. Evan was, of course, in love with the train ride. We got the Fast Passes and rode back to ToonTown for another ride on the Barn Stormer.

    Meanwhile, back at the BBB, Bambi was snapping pictures like crazy.









    A little pixie dust in the hair









    I think some of the pixie dust is still in her hair! (And the aforementioned sandals)



    And showing off her "Birthday Princess" Sash with her Handsome Prince


    Coming up next: the Rain, the Runaway dog and the Restaurant.
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    I'm impressed you found an excuse to play golf. I usually can't get away when we have the kids with us.
    It helps when you can use your wife's father as an excuse. "But honey, he's been so busy at work, that he hasn't been able to enjoy himself at all. Think of your dad's well being. I don't really want to go golfing, but I'll make that sacrifice for him."

    :lmao::rotfl2::lmao::rotfl2:
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    Remember when I said that there would be stretches where my memory has failed me? Now is one of those times. The timestamp on that last picture was 12:01. The next picture I have is from the Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade, timestamped 3:23. I have no video from that time, and didn't do any Facebook updates. Soooo....
    I do know that we ate lunch somewhere. We usually do that about this time of day. There is a charge on my Disney Visa statement for this day from Pinocchio's, which is the closest CS restaurant to BBB, so we probably ate pizza. :confused3
    I do know that Bambi, Madison and Grandpa went over to ride Splash Mountain again, and that Evan and I were killing time. We got FastPasses to Big Thunder Mountain, and were then walking past Pirates of the Caribbean and saw the wait was 5 minutes. I asked him if he wanted to go on it, and he got very excited. The 5 minute wait must have been how long it took us to walk to the boat, because we didn't encounter any line and walked right to the front row of a boat. He loved it - the boat ride, the animatronics, the cannon blasts, everything.
    We met back up with the rest of the family and did the Country Bear Jamboree again. And again, the kids loved it.
    By the time that was over, it was almost 3:00, and we were right along the parade route in Frontier Land. We staked out a spot and then several things all happened at once.
    It starts to rain. It feels sooo nice since it's been so hot and muggy all day. We don the ponchos what we brought and stay relatively dry, as it's not a torrential downpour (yet).
    Second, Grandpa disappears and comes back with ice cream. This isn't very noteworthy except to illustrate that I like ice cream.:thumbsup2
    Third, Bambi gets a call from her mom, who, along with Bambi's brother, had stopped back at the house to let the dogs out before joining us back at WDW. If you don't recall the foreshadowing that I did in post #11, let me refresh your memory:
    The problem is, Evan and I (and to some extent Bambi's Dad) are about the only males that Pepper trusts. [Side note: remember that last sentence. It's a bit of foreshadowing.] Something must have happened to him before we got him, because he is very scared of men.
    Well, Bambi's Brother, being a strange male, must have spooked Pepper. Grandma was letting the dogs out the front door to do their business, and Pepper takes off.
    Another side note - he's done this before, once. We were up at my brother's farm with Pepper after only having him a few months. Another one of my brothers opened the house door, spooking Pepper, and he ran away. He was gone for 3 days before I was able to find him and get him home. He learned a lot from those 3 days and now rarely leaves my side.
    Anyway, he didn't go far - only 4 or 5 houses away. He would slowly come back towards her, but never get within 10 feet. Luckily, they live on a very quite no-outlet street, so there wasn't much traffic to deal with.
    So we're on the phone, in the rain, trying to talk Grandma through getting Pepper back into the house. Grandma had taken the van after leaving MK that morning, so I had no way to get back and help.
    Eventually, using a combination of treats and his best friend Allie, they were able to coax him into the backyard and into the back door. Crisis Averted. We now return you to your regularly scheduled Disney trip report:
    I seem to remember the parade starting in Frontier Land and working it's way to Main Street, but it was getting well after 3:00 and there was no parade in site. We were thinking that it was canceled due to the rain. We did see a little black tractor heading down toward the castle, which was interesting. Even with the rain getting harder, we did see the parade coming from the castle area.

    You can kind of see how hard it's raining by looking in the tree above Jiminy Cricket's head.



    And how lucky is Mary Poppins that her costume includes an umbrella?



    And then we get too see why that little black tractor went chugging by earlier. I guess even Disney floats have technical difficulties every once in a while. :lmao:



    The parade ended and the rain let up. We decided to do take Madison on BTMRR again while Evan and Grandpa played at the little playground under the WDWRR station. Just as we were about to get on ride, it was shutdown due to "lightning in the area". We waited, and waited and waited. We were told that we could wait or leave. I was pretty ticked that they had already taken our Fast Passes and would not reissue them. :mad: I couldn't get enough cell service in the loading area to check the radar, so we left it up to Madison if she wanted to wait or leave. She wanted to wait, so we did. After about 10-15 minutes, we climbed into a ride train to the thunderous cheer of everyone else waiting. Madison felt like a rock star.


    After we got off BTMRR, the rain started again, and it was heavy.

    We swam over to the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor, where my texted joke evidently wasn't funny enough. We came out of that to see that it was still pouring. Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin was closed to "technical difficulties" and we didn't want to subject the kids to Stitches Great Escape. We still had a couple of hours before dinner reservations, but there wasn't anything we felt like doing in the rain at MK. We made our way out of the park and over to the monorail for the ride to the Grand Floridian.

    Fresh off her dog-wrangling adventure, Grandma caught up to us here. We were about an hour early, but I checked in and got my pager hoping we could get in. Luckily, there was a TV with old Disney cartoons to sort-of entertain the kids and a nice plush couch in the lobby to keep us comfy and well-rested after a day in the park.

    About 10 minutes after our ADR time we had our photo taken and were seated. I'll never know why CRT is the only restaurant that includes your picture in the cost of the meal. They came around 1/2 way through our meal to show us the picture. It was nice, but not $29.95 for a few 5x7s nice.

    We had taken the kids up to the buffet to get their food and get them settled in eating before we went. Just as we got the kids sitting and eating, Cinderella came over.



    By this time, Evan was very hungry and shoveling down his Mac & Cheese. He refused to get up for a picture, so Bambi "assisted" him. Helpful hint - if you want to keep your fingers intact, don't get between Evan and his Mac & Cheese.



    Prince Charming came over a little later. Evan was still eating his Mac & Cheese.



    By now Evan was pretty sick of having to leave his food for pictures. But these are family memories, darn it! Lady Tremain.



    Anastasia



    Drizella



    The Royal Waltz



    The food was fantastic. I'm sure there are foodie TRs out there that royally pan this food as mediocre at best, but I'm not one of those people. This food was good, and the strawberry soup was out of this world. I think I had 3 bowls.

    Overall, Madison's 5th birthday went quite well, despite the rain. She had a blast, and that's all that matters. Another drive back to the house and we all crawled into bed.

    Tomorrow: Evan's 3rd Birthday at DHS & Dinner at Whispering Canyon Cafe.
     

    Disneymoon09

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 15, 2009
    By the way, Evan may or may not be flipping you the bird in the anastasia picture. I'm juuuust sayin! LOL!!
     

    dvczerfs

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 14, 2008
    nice updates barry!!! we havent eaten at 1900 in a long time. they had good prime rib years ago. we were there on the 15th and i couldnt figure why i didnt remember the rain? than it dawned on me, i was napping at okw during the 3pm parade! i havent seen a 3pm parade in years!!!:lmao: nice pics, love dd at the fountain!
     

    FreezinRafiki

    Cold enough for ya?
    Joined
    Apr 16, 2009
    By the way, Evan may or may not be flipping you the bird in the anastasia picture. I'm juuuust sayin! LOL!!
    Oh man. I can't believe it. I'm the king of dirty jokes and double entendres, and I missed that one! On my own son. I feel shame.
    But Evan is getting a cookie tonight because daddy is so proud.


    nice updates barry!!! we havent eaten at 1900 in a long time. they had good prime rib years ago. we were there on the 15th and i couldnt figure why i didnt remember the rain? than it dawned on me, i was napping at okw during the 3pm parade! i havent seen a 3pm parade in years!!!:lmao: nice pics, love dd at the fountain!
    It was raining hard, but at GF, Bambi's mom said it was clear skies 30 miles away in Lakeland. Sounds like Wisconsin weather.:confused3
     

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