PTR - Relaxing Trip ? - Nov 9 - 17

Discussion in 'Universal Studios Trip Reports' started by jeanelle, Sep 18, 2018.

  1. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    I've been reading and enjoying so many trip reports, I thought maybe I would start one myself.

    Background: DH and I were married 3 years ago after knowing each other for over a decade. We met, dated, separated and then got back together 5 years ago. During the time we were separated, I moved to Florida and fell in love with all of the parks. When it came time to plan our honeymoon, I knew I wanted to go to Disney. I planned for a year and half for our trip and it was very nice but not relaxing at all. I had planned everything out to the minute it seemed with fast passes and meals as for the first time ever we were on the dining plan. It was just too much. We ended up exhausted.

    Fast forward to about a year ago, I wanted to go back to Orlando. My DH wanted a relaxing vacation. We had only a week available to take due to our jobs and my DH insists on driving. I knew there was no way we could see everything at Disney in a week. A thought dawned on me....Universal! There are only 2 parks as we just are not water park people. We would stay onsite with Express and shouldn't have any wait for lines (another of DH's complaints). Finally, DH and I are both huge Harry Potter fans. I had been to Hogsmeade several times (including opening day) but moved before Diagon Alley was completed. DH agrees as long as we can make sure to have some relaxing times. I hurried online and looked at prices. What do you know, a great deal popped up for Club Level at HRH. I quickly booked it and a trip was born!

    Because I have OCD tendencies, I cannot go anywhere without some planning. I have tried to keep it to a minimum but here are our current plans.

    Friday, Nov. 9 - Travel day. Will stop in Macon, GA overnight.
    Saturday, Nov. 10 - Travel day. Check in at HRH followed by Luau at RPR that evening.
    Sunday, Nov. 11 - Park day. Will focus on the Harry Potter areas of the parks
    Monday, Nov. 12 - Park day. Will focus on the other areas of the parks. Dinner reservations at The Palm (a shout out to Schumigirl for this. The food looked so good in her reports, we had to do it.)
    Tuesday, Nov. 13 - Relaxing day at the HRH pool. Cabana rented. Possibly a trip to the parks for the water rides depending on weather and mood.
    Wednesday, Nov. 14 - Park Day. Will do what we have missed and favorites.
    Thursday, Nov. 15 - Park Day. Again will do what we missed and favorites.
    Friday, Nov. 16 - Departure and Travel day. Will stop in Dalton, GA overnight.
    Saturday, Nov. 17 - Arrive home again.

    For the park days, we are not planning on spending the entire day at the park. We will eat where the winds take us. I'd like to eat at the Leaky Cauldron since I have not and would like to take DH to Mythos since that is one of my favorites.

    Will this be the relaxing vacation my DH wants? Will he want to come back again and again like me? We shall see.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2018
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  2. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    I always like to see pictures of the people that are writing the trip reports. So here we are on our honeymoon at Disney. 12144652_10207429265827830_9183449894419322113_n.jpg

    My hair was so dark then! I went au natural a little over a year ago and now we look like this:

    40504681_10216634904206132_5275367368850145280_n.jpg

    The other thing that happened over the last year is we became grandparents for the first time. This is our adorable grandaughter, Charlie. We are already planning her first Disney and Universal trip. Baby items will be purchased during this trip. :)

    Thanks for following along!
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2018
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  4. pattyw

    pattyw DIS Veteran

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    I'm here Jeanelle!! Your trip is getting close!! DH will absolutely have a relaxing vacation! :thumbsup2

    Charlie is adorable!! :love:
     
  5. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    Welcome! I've been living vicariously through your PTR! Thank you. We think she is the most adorable baby ever! Not that we are bias or anything!LOL.
     
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  6. mjhtvchick

    mjhtvchick DIS Veteran

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    I think it sounds like a great trip! My favorite thing about Universal (especially when you have Express Passes) is that it is so carefree - do what you want; eat where & when you want - don't forget you can also resort-hop so easily! Having a car also allows you to venture off-property for meals, etc. if the mood strikes. Enjoy!
     
  7. Robo56

    Robo56 Look into my eyes

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    Hello Jeanelle :wave2:

    Great start to your PTR.......It is so good to hear love stories that were meant to be......may you and your husband have many years of happy marriage.

    Your Universal vacation will be a great relaxing trip.

    Charlie is beautiful.......the first grandbabies are always so special........now you will have to plan her first visit to Disney someday...it’s so nice to see the wonder through their eyes.

    When I read you were driving to Orlando and stopping in Macon I wondered if you were nearby......I looked at you’re avatar and it said Evansville.....I’am at my home in Newburgh right now.....right near Evansville.

    Have you Ever flown into Sandford from Evansville on Allegiant?

    You will love Diagon Alley.
     
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  8. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    We have already talked about Charlie's first Disney and Universal trips. We decided that we will wait until she is between 5 and 7 for her first Disney trip and maybe 11 for the first Universal trip. We have to indoctrinate her with Harry Potter.

    I am from Evansville. Just a stone throw from Newburgh. It definitely is a small world. I am a cancer survivor so I have spent more than my share of time at Gateway. :) I have only flown out of Evansville for work and that is to Chicago. Because we can't get direct flights to most places, we usually just drive to Louisville and fly from there. My DH hates to fly though and loves to drive so we usually end up driving everywhere. We just got a new SUV and he is excited to take it on it's first really long trip.
     
  9. Robo56

    Robo56 Look into my eyes

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    I will admit i’am not terribly fond of flying either, but will fly from EVV TO Orlando for the upcoming HHN trip.

    Congratulations on the new SUV. Always nice to get it out on the open road for sure.

    Yep....I’am very familiar with Gateway Hospital....had my joint replacements there and was there in April with another health issue.

    God Bless you dear lady on being a breast cancer survivor :hug:

    Do you participate in the Susan G. Komen Race for Cure events in Evansville on September 30th . It’s seems they always do nice things for the breast cancer survivors here locally.
     
  10. schumigirl

    schumigirl It's a bit of a roodie doodie word for lady parts

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    Jeanelle.......looking forward to reading your trip report!

    I’ve always loved reading your comments on mine, so I’m going to enjoy this one I’m sure!

    Your grand baby is adorable! And you both look a lovely couple........and what a good sounding trip you have planned.....I do hope you love The Palm.........we had a fabulous meal on Saturday night gone.......

    And I’m sure your DH will enjoy his trip..........:)
     
  11. macraven

    macraven Proud Redhead Moderator

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    Jeanelle, glad you are sharing your trip plans with us

    I know all those cities that have been mentioned
    I bet you know where Mt Carmel is located
    I’m now in Ga

    Beautiful family you have!

    Great planning ahead for your
    future trips taking granddaughter
     
  12. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    I don't mind flying really. My husband just doesn't like it. If it was a short long weekend trip, we would fly. Part of the enjoyment of the vacation for DH is the drive.

    Thank you! In December I will be 4 years cancer free. I have one more year before they can say "I'm cured." I haven't participated the Race for the Cure. It always seems to be a time when I'm not free. I have done the Walk for Life as a survivor. My mom and I did the survivor walk together the last year she could really do it (She survived colon cancer but eventually succumbed to lung cancer). It is a very special memory for me. :love:
     
  13. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    YEAH!!!! Schumigirl is following my trip report! I love your reports and hope that I can do just as good a job.

    Charlie (her real name is Charlotte) is the joy of our lives. We found out that my DDIL was pregnant just a few weeks after my mom passed. My mom really wanted a great granddaughter as she already had 3 great grandsons, so it makes Charlie even more special to me. I never thought I could have as much love as I do for my son (who is also an only child like yours is) until my granddaughter came into the world.

    I am sure we will love The Palm. We are excited to get a little dressed up and have a great meal and then we plan to wander down to City Walk and check out a couple of the dance clubs. I'm sure we will be the old fogies but my husband likes to dance. :dogdance:

    I know he will enjoy it if I remember to give him time to just relax in the room or by the pool and don't try to do everything all in one day!
     
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  14. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    My DH lived in Dalton for several years. We usually plan on like 7-8 hours of driving the first day and then 5-6 the next day. We stop frequently as we are old...LOL Our main goal on the first day of travel is to get through Atlanta. Neither of us enjoy that! We basically live on border of Indiana and Kentucky so it is always exciting to get through so many states the first day and then comes GA and FL that take forever!

    We usually do not plan anything our arrival day. However, we both were really interested in the luau so decided to try that for dinner that night. We have both been to Hawaii. My DH actually lived there for a few years when he was a kid. We know it won't be like the real thing but we are excited to try.
     
  15. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    I went back and bolded the true parts of the PTR to separate it from the extraneous conversations. :) I like when people make it easier to find the true trip report.

    So my DH is a very good sport. He actually agrees to wear matching shirts for a day or two on our vacation. We wore these on our honeymoon.

    12088527_10207429267307867_2656015567694060680_n.jpg

    If you haven't noticed, I'm a hat girl. I have thick, curly hair that does not like the Florida humidity so I tend not to fight it and throw it back in a ponytail and put a hat on.

    For our vacation this year, I purchased the following shirts for us to wear.

    il_570xN.1340080308_ko7b.jpg
    We plan to wear these on the day we are focused on Harry Potter. Of course I am the one up to no good and my laid back DH handles hte mischief. DH wants the full HP experience so we plan on purchasing robes in our houses (Slytherin for DH and Ravenclaw for me) and also getting interactive wands. We truly are kids in old people bodies. This is one of the reasons I planned on a day of us doing nothing but the HP areas. I want us to really be able to experience everything in them including the shows, shops, spells, the small details, and just be able to soak up the atmosphere.

    We also plan on wearing some similar but not identical shirts a couple of days. I have one that says "After all this time? Always" with the deer and the Deathly Hallows symbol as the A in Always. He has one with a picture of Snape on it that says "Turn to Page 394". We also have different but old school Justice League shirts that we will wear one day.

    Thank you for sharing my excitement with me!
     
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  16. pattyw

    pattyw DIS Veteran

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    That's wonderful!!:)

    Yep- I have very curly hair! I just had a keratin treatment done in June- it was wonderful! It is supposed to last three months and it did! Just now, my curl is coming back, but it seems less frizzy now. I think I'm going to get another one done soon!

    Love the matching shirts!:thumbsup2
     
  17. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    I had a keratin treatment before our wedding. I was hoping it would help on our honeymoon. It took 3 applications before it actually took hold and it didn't really last. The best thing I've actually done for my hair is to stop dying it. My hair is so much more healthy now.
     
  18. schumigirl

    schumigirl It's a bit of a roodie doodie word for lady parts

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    That is a beautiful sentiment jeanelle.......little Charlie is indeed blessed.

    We love to dance too!!! But, never seem to manage it here.....lol.....hope you fare better with that one.......your trip report will be wonderful......don't doubt it for a second.......and love your shirts!!!!

    I`m positive you`ll love The Palm........:thumbsup2
     
  19. DLo

    DLo DIS Veteran

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    Following along. I will be there for three days right before you (Nov 6-8) I am usually all Disney but went to Universal for the first time with my brother and his family in May. I enjoyed it and can’t believe I waited this long to go ! I am tagging along with my husband to Orlando on a last minute ish trip. No way I could do Disney in 2 1/2 days but think Universal will be perefect for just me for those days. Looking forward to reading more .
     
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  20. jeanelle

    jeanelle Mouseketeer

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    Welcome to the party! I actually love Disney but it has been harder and harder to have a vacation there without massive amounts of preplanning. We don't know what we want to eat tonight for dinner let alone in 6 months! I laughed when I saw your comment about doing Disney in 2 1/2 days. When I lived in Florida I would do solo trips to Disney for the weekends. I would either drive the 3 hours up on Friday night after work or early in the morning on Saturday and arrive when the parks opened. I always planned on doing all 4 parks over the weekend. I would do MK, HS, and Epcot on Saturday and then AK on Sunday and drive home. Of course I only did my favorites in all the parks. That was one nice thing about living close and having the annual passes, I could go multiple times in a month, stay offsite, and really not spend a lot of money. Also if I missed something, it wasn't a big deal. Now that we are traveling 12 hours and spending more money, I feel like I need the extra time in order to get my money's worth.
     
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  21. Robo56

    Robo56 Look into my eyes

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    Congratulations on being four years cancer free.......So sorry to hear your mom passed........Mom memories are very special :hug:


    Your t-shirts are cool.....great idea.


    ruthies12 has a great sticky with all the hidden gems of Diagon Alley to look for called
    “Wizarding World Touring Plans and Details” great information for Potter Fans.

    Look forward to more of your PTR
     
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