A Year of Disney: Nov 16th, 2019 - Mother/daughter trip (PTR)


Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
Jul 22, 2005
No we missed it thankfully! We went home Thursday the 7th. We have reservations for December 14-16 and I'm trying to plan for early Jan and late Feb/Mar as well as my birthday in Sept and one last trip in Oct before our passes expire. Whew, I think I will need more Southwest Air miles!
Oh, good! Too bad - we'll just miss each other again! :) I have reservations for Dec 6th-7th, and it will be my first solo trip ever, if I make it out there! I'm excited to do lots of little things I wouldn't normally do, because I don't have any pressure to hit all the highlights like we usually do with one-day trips! I will be back the third week of January with my husband, and then again for spring break in March, I think. I plan to go a couple times over the summer (one with my 9-year-old alone), and then in the fall (or early summer maybe) I'll take the two littles for a trip, and my DS13 wants to do his solo trip in early October probably. And I might try to hit one more time before my pass it up when the holidays start. It's going to be a busy year!


Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
Jul 22, 2005
We had a good second ride on HSM with less wait than the first time! The photos, however, were still not working! Sad day! It was 12:45 local time and we still didn't have a single pic for our Photopass. I didn't see more than 1-2 photographers out and about the whole time. Or maybe they were just covered with crowds? Who knows. I did ask a cast member to take that group photo of us earlier for rope drop. We headed to the Galaxy Grill (hah. I looked it up.) to pick up our order. It took it kind of forever, and our fries were cold, but at least we were sitting in the shade resting instead of standing in a line! I was way too hungry to take pictures, plus it was just cheeseburgers (for DF and I), a chopped salad for K, and a kids' chicken tender meal for DD11. We were unimpressed with the tiny-ness of her two little chicken tenders, but it let her pick a Dannon yogurt drink for -both- of her sides, so she was living the good life. (My kids are obsessed with sugary yogurt...)

You guys you guys you guys. GUESS what we did next!

Can you guess?

You never will.

I finally crossed this little beauty off my Disneyland bucket list:

The Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes!!!

We always go on weekdays or quieter times, so it's almost never been opened when we're there since I figured out that I wanted to go on it and never had. Well, last week I finally got to! And it was fun! K and DF were all about trying it, but DD11 wasn't so impressed with the idea. "I don't want to paddle; I'm tired!" "You don't have to paddle if you don't want to!" Haha, of course the peer pressure of the situation meant that she totally paddled. And my right arm was so done by the time we finished, but it was fun, and I was so excited to do it! Someday soon I need to do the Casey Jr Train (if I've been on that one, it's on one of my first trips when I was 3 or 7, and I don't remember it) and sail on the Columbia. I think those are the only current attractions that I've never done. I think. Oh, except the Emotional Whirlwind, haha! I just realized I haven't technically seen that. Or the Millennium Falcon. But that's another story...

We had waited less than 10 minutes for the canoes (really just time to unload/load) but afterwards had to wait around for 15-20 minutes before our Splash Mountain FP was ready. I tried to convince them to just -walk- over into Galaxy's Edge, but no one was that interested. Seriously? Sigh. So instead we walked around in the little store over the Winnie the Pooh. I think even that ride's line was a little long. I think the days of frequent super-short lines for WtP might be over. As are the days' of taking a nice quiet rest on the lower floor of the Hungry Bear Restaurant. 🙄

Splash Mountain was interesting. DF really really wanted to ride in the front, and asked for it specifically. However, she was a little traumatized by how wet she got (even wearing a poncho) and the drop. It took her a few minutes to shake it off afterwards. But we finally got our first Photopass picture, and it was a good one, even if I look like a dork, haha. DD11 kind of hates Splash Mountain, because she feels so nervous about the drop every time, but she said it was actually her best ride on it so far, because she was too busy worrying about her friend's experience to feel so worried about it. So I guess that was good.

After that it was almost 2:30, and DF really really wanted to check out Tom Saywer's Island. She had asked about it several times. So we rode the raft over, and the girls ran all over the island while K and I took a break on the nice log benches there. I'm pretty sure they're the same ones my dad used to stretch out on and take a little mini nap while we did the same exploring. It was in the shade (the day topped out at about 85º degrees, so it wasn't cool by any means), which was nice. They weren't ready to leave an hour later, but we really needed to keep moving if we wanted to do all the things! I'm glad they enjoyed it.

POTC was next on our list. It's not one of my favorites (just because it's a little spooky down there) but it's a Disneyland must-do. I think they liked it. I can't remember, but I think K had been on it before. It said it would be 30 minutes, but it was just over 20.

After that we had FP's for Buzz Lightyear, but I've been on that one plenty of times, and DD11 had told me the parade was a priority for her, so at 4:35, I knew it was time to start saving a good seat. They were going to do Buzz then come and buy some more treats that they'd had their eye on at the Candy Palace/Gibson Girl, so I grabbed a spot on Main Street right in front of those stores. I haven't been on Main St. to see a parade in years and years. We usually tend to go over by IASW instead, but I enjoyed this a lot more. The Disneyland Band set up right next to us and did a performance, which I thoroughly enjoyed. (I did marching band some in high school and in junior college, and honestly, I enjoyed it more than than the parade itself, haha.) And they brought out these beauties to share with us. The Peppermint Holiday Sundae was super tasty. The only change I would have made would be regular waffle cone on the bottom instead of the red whatever-it-was. They also got caramel apples, but those do not appeal to me. And are crazy-expensive for caramel and apple.

The parade was good, and we enjoyed our spot. It honestly wasn't insane for the parade, crowd-wise, and no one tried to encroach on our space, but we had made a planning error afterwards. The next thing they had as a must-see was Toontown, since neither DF or K had ever seen it, and DD11 wanted to see it all decked out for Christmas. Guys, it's always an error in judgment to follow the parade anywhere. The crush of people was a bit overwhelming, and I will need to avoid anything to do with the parade or Fantasmic or fireworks or what-have-you when I visit with my husband. His anxiety makes that kind of situation a bit overwhelming at best. Thankfully, it was just really slow for the four of us, but we made our way over to Toontown by about 6:45 PM.

The girls did a lot of exploring, and then I was really looking for at least one character, because I hadn't seen a single one all day! (Except the Mad Hatter from a distance.) Really?? There is a sweet little boy we know with a mitochondrial disease that had ended up in an out-of-state ICU a few days before (without the doctors that know him and his difficult, unique condition) and his grandma said he would be excited to see any Marco Polos we could with characters waving at him or saying hi. I meant to get several, but we just didn't get to meet any! I was prepared to wait in line at Pooh Corner, but I fogot Santa is there right now. :P But Mickey was the only one meeting at the moment, and his line said 60 minutes. Really? Sigh...
Last edited:


Actually, my name is Sara. It's a long, VMK story.
Jul 22, 2005
So the line for Mickey seemed insanely long. But I remembered some people saying the sign out front is often wrong, and I felt like it wasn't busy enough at that time of night for it to really be that long. At least I hoped not. Since DF was interested in pics with Mickey, I told them we should at least walk through his house and check it out, then see how long the line really looked when we got to the end. You guys, we waited maybe 15 minutes. Tops. It was awesome, and Mickey was so cute and sweet and did some great hand motions waving to our friend, and expressing love for him. I kind of wanted to cry. And we got some cute pictures, too. :)

Then we made another error in judgment. The line for Gadget's Go-Coaster said 20 minutes. DF really wanted to ride it anyway. I promised her it was the shortest "thrill" ride know to man. Our kids love it, but only if there's no wait and they can run on it over and over for 3-4 times. But we waited the full 20 minutes, sadly. :P

It was after 7:30 now, and we were trying to decide what to do next. We wanted to ride the train, but the line to get on was like 20 minutes. We decided some real food would be much appreciated, and we did a mobile order at the Bengal BBQ. Their bacon-wrapped asparagus and Bengal Beef Skewer (hold the sauce) are so good, and one of my favorite real-food treats at Disneyland. My daughter also got a Bengal beef skewer, and K got bacon-wrapped asparagus, while DF thought she was up to the spiciness of the Banyan Beef skewer (spoiler: she wasn't). They also split a breadstick. Another time the mobile order took way longer than I hoped, and K and DF ended up like this on the table: (vs. DD11 and I)

They were kind of done for the day. I felt bad for them, but I had warned them before we planned this trip that we tour guerilla-style on a single day like that. We were not leaving before midnight. We were wishing we had stayed close enough that they could leave without us. But alas. On our next trip, we'll have it figured out better, so we don't have to feel bad for not leaving at any certain time. At 8:25 we considered trying to Jungle Cruise, but we got in line and it was going to be a good 30 minutes I was afraid. We decided to go over and ride something in Fantasyland instead (the teacups were a must-do for DF) but we started trying to go over there and all the cut-throughs were closed for the time being. When does that happen? Does it always happen? (I remember it happening before) It was obnoxious, and we weren't up to trekking around by way of BTMR through Fantasyland. So we walked back over towards the HMH (which we were waiting for a FP on) and stopped at Zocalo's for DF to take a table-nap under the hat lamps they had outside. She was freezing, as was her mom. DD11 and I couldn't handle the heat lamp for more than a minute (we're both more hot-blooded and also have more insulation, haha) so we waited on a bench nearby and watched a tiny blinking Mickey balloon rise higher and higher into the atmosphere for a good 10 minutes. Then it was time for our HMH fastpass, so we headed that direction. We were getting on right as the first Fantasmic was starting. We had fp's for the second showing, but the girls weren't really up for waiting around and standing through the show.

We rode HMH (not my favorite in any version, again with the spookiness) and watched a little bit of part of Fantasmic before deciding we were finally going to take a ride on the Disneyland Railroad. The wait was only like 10 minutes, and we enjoyed seeing the sights, seeing some fireworks, etc. Well, DD11 and I enjoyed it. K and DF mostly napped after seeing the diorama. When passing through Tomorrowland, we saw that the autopia line was finally really short, and asked if they wanted to get off and ride that, or get off at Main St and come back in. Thankfully, I realized the fireworks were just ended, and that getting off at Main Street would be chaotic at best. They opted to ride it all the way around again (and mostly slept during it) then we got off in Tomorrowland to use the bathroom and then ride Autopia. The girls really enjoyed that one.

After Autopia we remembered the dance party was happening in Tomorrowland that they'd been excited to try, and the girls got some life breathed into them as they danced with all the characters for a good 20-30 minutes. We saw more characters there easily (Chip, Dale, Goofy, Pluto, and Chipette! I've never seen her, I don't think!) I danced with them and took a lot of video of them while K huddled at the side. Poor lady, she enjoyed Disneyland, but she definitely doesn't love it like us. She doesn't have a lot of excitement for life right now. Too many responsibilities and a lot of life-stress. But I'm still glad she came.

Our last FP for Hyperspace Mountain became available at 11:05, and we ran on and had an awesome ride! AND the pictures were finally working! Yay! We had a great time! I'm glad we got to go on that one 3 times, AND get a good picture, since it was a favorite.

On our way toward Fantasyland, we noticed that the Astro Orbiters had a 5 minute line. DF had wanted to ride either that one or Dumbo, but the lines had been long all day, and my instincts said we should wait. Yay, I was glad we got another one in that she wanted to do without a long line. I'd had enough of those with just a couple 30 minute lines. Haha, I'm spoiled. K sat out on that one, since I assured her it was -very- spinny. Then we went over to the Mad Tea Party and she sat out again. As we were getting in our tea cup DF realized she had left her backpack somewhere, and she was pretty certain it was in a rocket at the last ride. So K took off to go ask about it, and we got in line for Alice, since it was a must-do for DD11. It only took us maybe 10 minutes. We had FP's for one last ride on BTMR, but when we couldn't locate the backpack, things got kind of stressful, and it wasn't happening.

We went to City Hall, because they said if there was money in the bag, they had to turn it in there. (They didn't know if they had found it there or not though.) DF had my minnie ears, about $40, and a few other odds and ends in the bag. It wasn't at City Hall, but they said Security probably had it if it was an "unattended bag," and they probably wouldn't get it in until the next morning, so we should come back tomorrow. :-/


Aspiring Disney Travel Planner
Aug 19, 2015
It actually ended up taking more like 25 min to board and ride HSM because they had a short shut down as soon as we got into the line.
HSM was down for a good portion of our trip so this doesn't surprise me... I was bummed because I love HSM and hope it's still there during my next trip.

How exciting! I hope it is good for you! It was very busy for us, but not nearly as busy as the Saturday before, according to wait times. We were able to do a lot of what we wanted, and didn't wait more than 35 minutes for anything. (That was a choice though. Lines were much longer than that much of the day.) I hope you have the best time, and I will have to go catch up on your recent trip!
It was awesome! I'm not going to do a TR because I'm SO behind on my WDW trip but we had a really great time. My fiance's friend who lives in LA came with us; she bought an AP to come with us and then told us she had never been to DLR before 😳 I was SHOCKED she bought an AP without going first but she's been to WDW before and lives so close. She ended up LOVING it and it was fun experiencing her firsts with her. Our wait times weren't too bad and we even took engagement pics using PhotoPass because we're cheap (haha).

my solo trip in 2 weeks
Ah, must have missed you're doing a solo trip! SO exciting! I want to do one sometime, hope you do a TR for it.

They were kind of done for the day. I felt bad for them, but I had warned them before we planned this trip that we tour guerilla-style on a single day like that. We were not leaving before midnight. We were wishing we had stayed close enough that they could leave without us. But alas. On our next trip, we'll have it figured out better, so we don't have to feel bad for not leaving at any certain time.
This is one reason I dislike doing the parks with anyone who isn't used to coming. It's fun when everyone is having fun and not so much fun when everyone is miserable. Glad they were troopers though!


Disney News and Updates

Get Daily Email Updates