Mom and adult daughter's Xmas/Wedding Planning Trip ~ Day 1


<font color=blue>The TF looked all over but couldn
Feb 16, 2000
The cast:

Disnymom1 ~ 40-something, mother of wdwpluto
Wdwpluto ~ 25, getting married at Disney’s Wedding Pavilion to DF, Kevin (who sat this trip out) on 11.7.02

Some background: Kevin and I have been planning a Disney wedding since January 2001. We hadn’t planned on going down to Disney until the wedding. After the 9.11 attacks, Mom wanted a little mother daughter time. So what better excuse than wedding planning? (Kevin’s involvement in the wedding is “whatever makes you happy as long as we’re married at the end of the day”. (Smart man ~ LOL)

Pictures of the whole shebang can be found here

Day 1 agenda
•The flight
•Lunch: Hollywood & Vine
•Dinner: Chef Mickey’s (Contemporary)
•Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

The flight
Time to get up! 4:15 AM came early. Too early, but it didn’t matter cuz we were going to Disney! Our flight was at 7 AM and I’d say we pretty much left on time. If you’re going to fly out of Newark anytime soon, get the earliest morning flight because the airport was quiet. The Continental check in line was short (that NEVER happens) and the security checkpoint line was short.

Speaking of security…as always, everyone’s bags had to go through the scanner and everyone had to walk through the metal detectors. In addition to that, they were scanning everyone with the wand and patting down the small of your back and your ankles. And there are National Guardsmen in their camouflage uniforms with their guns standing around watching the whole thing. (This was at Newark – Orlando was a bit different, but more on that later!) We board the plane and off we go!

We land at the airport and get our luggage (which is ready insanely fast) get on the Mears shuttle and head for the Caribbean Beach

The Caribbean Beach
Ok. I’ll admit it. I’m a Contemporary Resort snob. I like the convenience of the monorail. That being said…I thought the Caribbean Beach was a beautiful resort. It’s big, huge actually. I think the guy said that there are 2,200 guest rooms. We stayed in Jamaica, building 45. There are 7 bus stops, so I don’t think any room is terribly far from the bus stop. I don’t think we ever waited even 10 minutes for a bus. We were really lucky – we’d get to the bus stop as the bus we needed was pulling up or it’d pull up 5 minutes later. (A girl could get used to that kind of service).

We head for the bus stop and it’s off to MGM!

MGM/Disney Studios
We get to MGM and activate our annual pass vouchers (which took much less time than we thought) and head for the gates. Disney security does a bag check before you’re allowed to enter the parks. No big deal, I’m all for security!

Our first order of business? FOOD! We head up to Hollywood & Vine to see if they can fit us in. Of course they can! (The parks are practically empty and we never had to wait for much of anything this trip). We always got to H&V when we do MGM and as always the food is verrrry good. Flank Steak, Baked Salmon, and Pasta in a cream sauce with seafood and more that I can’t remember. We stuffed ourselves full and then hit the dessert bar – our plan of attack for the dessert bars at buffets was to grab a dinner plate and fill it with a little bit of each dessert so we could try it all!

Characters at H&V are Goofy (in a zoot suit and pimp hat), Minnie (in a pretty white dress), Pluto!, and Chip & Dale (in pink and green vests and berets – supposed to be old Hollywood style directors I think). Chip & Dale have always harassed me (in a fun way) wherever I go. This time was to be no exception. Mom and I were working our way through the dessert plate and Chip comes to our table and grabs my fork and loads it up with strawberry short cake. Now at this point, I figure he’s going to feed me – complete with airplane noises or something silly like that. Well let’s just say that I got a forkful of whipped cream up my nose. Mom has pictures, it’s a total riot. I think that’s when it sunk in for both of us that we were really at Disney.

Ok, done with lunch and it’s almost 2:30 PM – time for the Stars and Motor Cars parade (it’s new for the 100 years celebration). This is a wonderful parade! The Toy Story gang rides in on a car that looks like Andy’s bed, Aladdin and Jasmine ride in on a car that’s shaped like Genie. The Villains are there, Snow White and the Dwarves are there. Sulley and Mike from Monsters, Inc. are there. It’s a great new parade!

Now to ride the rides! First up? Our favorite, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster! The line was walk-on AND we got to ride in the front car. Mom bought the picture, I have to scan it, it’s hysterical. Then we head for Tower of Terror – again, the line is walk-on. We also rode the Great Movie Ride and Star Tours that afternoon. We still wanted to see Muppet Vision and do the Back Lot tour, but we’d be back (MGM is our favorite park).

Side note - We’ve seen Osborne Lights a bunch of times and didn’t have the desire to see it again. If you do go to see it wait a while after they start letting people through. It gets mobbed and you can barely walk. I’m not claustrophobic, but I get a little crazy walking through there with all those people.

Dinner – already?
Already it’s time to head out. We have a 6:15 PM Priority seating at Chef Mickey’s in the Contemporary. We hop a bus and are there in a flash. We’re seated almost immediately – which is rare since this is a popular character meal. Again – buffet style. Another one of our favorite places to eat! Characters: Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Chip & Dale (who were much more subdued here). We stuff our faces (this is 2 big meals too close together for us – I recommend a big breakfast and a big dinner with snacks in between).

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
The holiday shows they put on here don’t interest us (we’ve seen them in years past). We wanted to ride the rides! We hit…Buzz Lightyear, Space Mountain, Peter Pan, Snow White, Dumbo (walked right on, when does that ever happen??), Aladdin’s Magic Carpets, Haunted Mansion, Runaway Railroad (if you can do it once during the day and once at night – it’s very different!), and Pirates of the Caribbean. And we caught the fireworks (which are different from the normal Magic Kingdom fireworks). I’d say we got there at 7:30 PM and got back to the hotel about 11:30 PM. Whew! Exhausting!

I called FH Kevin at home to let him know that we were alive and give him our room # and then passed out.

Tomorrow’s agenda:
• Meet w/ Bill @ Disney’s Fairy Tale Wedding’s to see the Wedding Pavilion and Citricos (where we’ll be having our reception)
• Epcot
• Dinner – Clambake at the Cape May Café over at the Beach Club Resort (which we were really looking forward to this trip!)

Marla Hellwig

I'm not lost, it's called creative exploring
Mar 25, 2000
Your trip is off to a good start. I love the mashed taters at Chef Mickeys. Thanks for posting!


<font color=blue>The TF looked all over but couldn
Feb 16, 2000
Hi Marla! Thanks! I can't believe how fast the trip went! Mmm...mashed taters. Ever have breakfast at Chef Mickey's? Dinner is so much better IMHO!


Wow!!!! This is just the beginning!!!! Sounds like you're off to a great start. We just took our DS (age4) for the first time last month and are going back next month!!!! Can't wait to read more!!!


<font color=teal>Loves bubble tea!<br><font color=
Aug 1, 2000
Sounds like you did a lot on your first day! :earseek: Glad to hear you enjoyed both Hollywood and Vine and Chef Mickeys, we're planning on trying both next trip...


<font color=teal>Moderator<br><font color=red>Hono
Feb 15, 2000
How great to have a special trip with your mother before your wedding. I loved our breakfast at H&V. We had dinner at Chef Mickey's too and it was good, but I think my favorite was Hollywood & Vine.

Thanks for posting this, I'm looking forward to reading about the rest of your trip.