Family trip of 12, Nov 30 - Dec 8, three resorts

jo-jo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
Family trip. kids, spouses, 6 grand kids. Ages in group went from 2 -74.

This is not one of those wonderful day by day with pictures reports. This is a mismash of thoughts.

Let's get the bad stuff out of the way first....

Resorts, for 8 of us 2 bedroom at BLT 5 nights, BCV 2 night, SSR 1 night. For the rest BLT , studio 8 nights.
For us in the 2 bedroom, everysingle band in every single resort, we couldn't open the door. At BCV, my DD used the phone to open door (not sure what she did at BLT) , but at SSR, the phones didn't work either.

edited to add: At BCV, we had one of those lovely first floor rooms right by the construction. Patio, bushes, walkway, construction. There was no way we could open those doors. Couldn't take a chance with the younger ones taking off.

Other problems with resorts, luggage transfer from BLT to BCV took 7-8 hours. We had expected the bags by 4ish. Our plan was leave BLT, go to Epcot, go to BCV, make dinner (which groceries being transferred), go to marshmellow roasting making smores (with supplies that we didn't have yet. After talking to front desk, bell service , they didn't know where the luggage was, but we should have it in an hour or two. Bell service told us no one from BLT has luggage, it's normal to deliver luggage between 4-6 pm. I've always thought it was mid afternoon. I then called MS. She said BLT was swamped with transfers today and the luggage was being moved as we spoke. At 5:30 ish the family went on to marshmellow roasting. As it turns out, for some reason disney decided to provide chocolate and cookies to make smores. So grandkids did have a chance to make smores.
We ended up getting our luggage about 6:30 -7:00.

SSR- We left the family about 8 ish at the parks to go the room. We get to SSR and found our room which was very close to the bus stop. That was great. As mentioned before couldn't open the door. I tried to call the resort thru the app. Phone rang once and then dead air. I held on for maybe 10 secs. Nothing. Tried three times. Same thing. Then I left DH at the door and went in search of a CM. Walked from the room in the grands section to the pool, didn't see anyone, but I did see a house phone. Called the front desk and he fixed my band over the phone and a CM just happened to walk by as I was calling. He walked me back to room. Band worked. Asked if I needed anything else. I needed to get luggage, he mentioned calling bell services. ok, I called. Few mins later, knock at door. Same CM with bed rails that was ordered. HUH? No one ordered them, but who knows, maybe my DD did, even though she didn't at the other two resorts. (She didn't).

Another knock at door, front desk CM checking on bands, resets DH band. Talking about trying to call resort, he says I didn't know you could do that. I showed him. Hit call. One ring and dead air.........maybe 30 secs later a second ring. He agrees that's a bit slow between rings. And is trying to say since we have so many bands to the room, it's confused. OK then.

It's getting late so I decide to open up sofa bed so it's ready for 4 year old who would probably be sleeping when she got here. No sheets. I looked in drawers and chest/coffee table. Can't find any. I called. We'll send some right up. Few mins later knock on door. it's luggage. Lots of bags. After sorting things for 8 people, I realized we don't have the cold stuff. Called bell services. They will look. Phone call from bell services, describe what's in the bag. ummmm milk, juice, yogurt drinks.......hard boiled eggs. Yup this is it, we'll send it up. Knock a few mins later get bag and sheets. I didn't think about pillows. Called about pillows. And I quote"we'll put in that work order right away", just seemed like odd wording. 5 -10 min later get pillows.


This isn't a problem but seemed odd. In both BCV and SSR, the fridge opened the wrong way. The door hinge should have been on the other side to make it easier for cooking. And the toaster at BCV was the cheapest ever made.

ok, next up food.
 
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jo-jo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
We had a $300 order from walmart. My DD handled it and I don't believe there were any issues. Except for the huge bottle of real maple syrup.......she had ordered a small bottle and was given a qt size for the same price.. Too bad we had to leave it behind.

We ate most meals in room. No real cooking , frozen waffles, cereal, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, etc. One night we order dominos pizza and order more than we needed for planned left overs. One night I took the boat from BLT to FW and got three chicken dinners for the trails end take out. One meal was all legs (grandkids favorite) I brought my fleece jacket to cover the take out bags to keep it all warm for the trip back on the boat. Best deal. Fed 10 people with left overs for $75 DS and wife went out for date night. Next night we had hot dogs and fries in room. Next night we had left over pizza, hot dogs, mac and cheese and cole slaw (from chicken dinner), did cook a package of noodles and sause and some frozen veggies. DD and husband went out for date night.

I made uncrustables in the room and took them to the parks in a container (6 per container)a few days. Always had with gold fish and raisins with us everyday, along with water bottles, juice boxes. We probably spent about $20 on refilling popcorn bucket.

We ate at Comic rays, England CS and the CS place at star wars land. Also ate at CP. I wasn't planning on any TS but DS decided one meal would be nice. So DS and DD split the bill. As an after thought, most of the family got sick a day later, so of course we are wondering if we were hit by the eating at a buffet germ spread. But at least we got sick at home. DGD got sick as soon as plane landed and then about every 6 hours, someone else reported being sick. But it was about a 24 hour thing.

We weren't together all the time, so there were times they families did buy a little something here and there to eat.

Of course, eating in the room and bringing drinks and snacks to the parks saved tons of money. We put the drinks in three separate bags, so if we did split , there was no worry that all the water went with one family. When the trip was over, we did leave behind perhaps 12 cans of soda, but one case of soda at walmart cost slightly more than one soda at disney, so I think we did ok.

Comment on CP. We went for a lunch 2:40. Waited 45 mins to be seated. We were seated at two tables that were side by side, not connected, just next to each other. Not sure why it took so long to get two tables. But the party was not overwhelmed with the food as a whole. I have not done lunch in years. Last few times has been breakfast and we loved it then.

All told for 8 nights, not counting date night meals, with walmart, prime now, CS , TS, dominos and miss, for a party of 12 we spent about $1800 with a third of that just for CP.
 

jo-jo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
tickets

DD and DSIL had AP. The rest of us had 8 day park hoppers. DD didn't think we'd need parkhoppers but I thought with MK closing early 5 out of 7 days, we'd be hopping at some point. DS and DDil had a few days left on no expiration tickets, (which we forgot about). FP wasn't working for DS and DDil and that was because the ticket that was used was the no expiration ticket and not the new 8 day. Went to GS. They couldn't give him the day back, but they did give him a one day hopper ticket and fixed it so the 8 day ticket was now being used. So it worked out in the end.

We upgraded the 8 day for several people and it worked fine with us paying about $147 from a ticket from undercover tourist to a Gold DVC AP. My DD did several of the kids and the CM seemed kind of end of the day tired. Since DD paid for walmart groceries , I was paying for ticket upgrade. The CM gives me receipt to sign, I give it back and she gives that and the other receipt to me , gets all the info from DD. Then she starts looking thru stuff, and has money in her hand ????, she is looking for the receipt she gave me. I was only suppose to get one, not both. So finish transaction and we leave. Get back to room, DD realized she didn't get cards for the kids. One is 14 , so she is old enough that she might go off and buy something on her own, so it is something needed. They got cards the next day at another GS. We upgraded a few days later and no problems at all.
 
  • jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    Transportation

    No horror stories . DS did get on bus that broke down and had to transfer to another bus. We did have some waits but nothing like 40 mins stories.

    DH uses a wheel chair at disney, and in the past we always would go through the front door and fold up the wheel chair . After the first bus, DH realized he couldn't make the big step into the bus anymore. After that we used the back door to walk up the ramp, but still folded up the wheelchair so that took up less seats inside the bus. All the bus drivers were very kind.

    DH also brought his rollator. He used it in the airport and one night we took the boat over to FW to see some Christmas lights (and to stop the kids from bouncing off the walls)
     

    jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    Grandma stuff,

    It was very nice seeing the grandkids playing, swimming, going on rides, doing kid stuff together. We do see everyone about 6 times a years, but not for days on end.

    Jungle cruise--younger kids climbed into boat and sat RIGHT THERE. no, go by mommy. CM says go sit with family, unless you don't like your family. So they move two ft over....no, keep going along the way. Skipper Sam is saying "just keep moving". Kids slide aallll the way down the seat. CM says, that great, less of the boat for me to clean later.

    At BLT, I'm hearing noises in our bedroom/bathroom, with a 2 year old, I have to check. The 2 year old is in the shower dancing. I said get out of there. She replies, it's Elsia's ice castle.

    Lion King--DGD 4 year old was picked to be the giraffe. And then at the end the show, the 4, 7 and 10 year old was picked to walked around. After the 4 year got picked to be giraffe, the 3 year got upset, since they were almost glued together for the trip, so he decided he wanted to sit with momma. So of course he also lost out on the march around. Why is life to hard?????

    DGS 3 years old, wiped his eyes after the elephants in soaring threw dirt in the air. While Father Christmas was speaking DGS 3 and DGD 4 was more interested in dried leaves on the ground. DGD 2 liked pirates because of the nice doggy. DGD14, 10 and DGS 7 wandered about doing a mission in Epcot, nice to see some interest aside just staring at whatever on phone. DGD 2 was beside herself see Winnie the pooh and the pig (her words, not mine). All younger kids have good set of lungs, mention roller coaster and there will be screaming. Happy , not scared screaming. DGS 7 was thrilled he was at last big enough for rocken roller coaster. Last trip he was about 4 inches short.


    Once, DH and I took the 3 and 4 year old on little mermaid ride, I was pushing DH. The rest of the family was doing big rides and they had the 2 year old. We walked with me pushing DH and each kid held onto his hands, so we were about 4 ft across. That was ok, but getting into ride, the kids were following us and they found ever crack, rock, leaf, or piece of wood sooooo interesting. We kept saying come along, come along. Every so often we'd pull off to the side and let 200 people go by. Not really maybe 30....But it worked out.

    I took the the 3 youngest on the Navi boat ride. Same let's stare at the ground issues , get on boat fine, waving at butterfly and jelly fish. We get to the end of the ride, the youngest wants to know where is moana? LOL

    We had two days that were just warm enough for swimming, two cold/cool days and a few very nice days. So great days with the kids. Kids get crankier with hot weather and a death march.

    In my opinion, the parks were busy....but DD did fairly well with FP. Never got on toy story. But did get on slinky dog.

    DD was one of those people who got up at 5 to go to DHS. After 5 hours and a bunch of break downs, they gave them a fp for the ride. Later that night they went back and the only people being allowed on , were those with this FP. And again the ride broke down, but they did get through the ride.

    We walked into the area just to eat the day before the ride opened. It was so mobbed you couldn't really look around, you were too busy looking out for other people.
     
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    jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    So kids had a good time, no body got sick (there), we got on most of the rides the kids wanted to do. Memories were made. For us it was a very busy trip and we didn't even stay with the kids all the time, we were really exhausted by the end, but we wanted the younger grandkids to have disney memories with grandma and grandpa, just like the older ones have.
     

    heaven2dc

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 26, 2003
    What a lovely trip report! I enjoyed how you broke down different aspects which really helped with tips for our upcoming trip for an extended family. You saved so much by being able to eat at in the room and pack snacks, etc. for the parks. This is something I am definitely going to talk my family into doing (instead of the dining plan). And I loved all of the cute stories you told about your grandchildren <3 So happy you had those memories to cherish!
     

    mickeymom629

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 24, 2002
    I enjoyed your trip report! I plan on going next year with DH and our 4 adult kids, 3 spouses, 3 grandkids, who are only going to be 4, 4 and 1 at the time.
     

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