The Darling Family June 2010 Trip Report: When are the Parents Showing Up?11/5 New TR

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by dismagiclover, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

    Aug 23, 2007
    :welcome: everyone to my new trip report. For you old readers it’s great to have you back! For any new readers out there I’m glad you could make it. This trip was a 13 day adventure that included the Auto Train, the Pirate's League, the Albatross Pirate Cruise, a week of the DDP, a Disney Cruise, Universal including Harry Potter, and a day at the beach. Needless to say I have lots to share so jump aboard:goodvibes If you stick around I'll get to explaining the trip report title too.

    If you’re interested in links to previous trip reports here they are:

    The Darling Family June 2009 Beach Club Trip Report: Hugging Ewoks and Finding Peter Pan

    Mrs. Darling's 2010 Half Marathon Trip: Yes, it Does Snow at Disney World

    And here is the link to the PTR for this trip:

    Mrs. Darling's June 2010 Accidental PTR: Pirates and Harry Potter

    Now on to the cast:

    First we have myself, Mrs. Darling (though my friends all call me Jenny.) We have my wonderful DH who sometimes morphs into Peter Pan at Disney World. DH never made it to Disney World this trip, but apparently Dr. Suess, Superheroes and Harry Potter all bring out Peter Pan as well.;)


    Next we have Wendy Darling. She is my beautiful daughter that is growing up too fast. I see her leaving the Nursery very soon. :sad:


    Then there is John Darling. John is my tender hearted 8 year old that really “gets” Disney World. And we can't forget Michael Darling. Michael is a bit moody for a 5 year old. He is fun loving and happy much of the time, but definitely will let us know when he’s had enough. There is no one Michael would rather be with than his big brother John. Though he does spend some of that time bugging his kind hearted big brother:rolleyes:


    There are supporting cast members that will make brief appearances in this trip report. They will be introduced when they make their debuts.

    Before I begin I’ll give a bit of background on how this trip came to be. (If you read my PTR you can skip this part.) My parents take each of their grandkids on a 10 year old trip and Wendy turned 10 this Spring so it was time for hers. I also have a niece that is 2 weeks younger than Wendy who was going on her 10 year old trip with my parents this summer too. So last summer Wendy and her cousin came up with the brilliant idea to take a Disney Cruise for their 10 year old trip. And my parents went for it! So that meant I had to get Wendy down to Florida for the trip. Now DH (always the sensible one) suggested we put her on a direct flight and be done with it. I on the other hand have very little sense and saw an opportunity for adventure.;) I concocted the idea of driving her down myself and taking my boys to Disney World while Wendy went on her cruise. DH is a very smart man and knows when he is fighting a losing battle so he agreed. Then he came up with a most fabulous idea. Why didn’t he fly down after the cruise and spend a few days with us visiting Universal and the new Harry Potter attraction? I loved this idea and agreed without any hesitation.:woohoo: Then he’d drive back with us. So that was the basic plan which we stuck with. I eventually decided I didn’t want to drive all the way to Orlando on my own so I came up with the Auto Train. DH suggested we find a beach to stop at on the drive home which led to a couple of nights at Hilton Head (not at the Disney resort though). Thus, my 13 day adventure was born. So let it begin.:dance3:

    Day 1: The Auto Train

    Day 2: We Made It!
    Epcot: Non-Commando Style
    The End of the Day

    Day 3: Toy Story Madness
    Bye Bye Wendy
    All the Grown Ups Have Left the Building
    Royalty Among Us
    A Little More Magic Kingdom
    Ohana Dinner

    Day 4: A Main Street Morning
    Crystal Palace and the Dumbo Dash
    More Magic Kingdom
    Where are the Grown Ups when You Need Them?
    More Magic Kingdom Non-Commando Style
    The Pirate's League
    Pirates Wandering the Magic Kingdom
    The End of the Parade
    Pirates in Epcot
    The Day Finally Ends

    Day 5: An Ohana Breakfast
    Back to Epcot
    An Emotional Reunion
    A Trip Report Title is Born
    Our Epcot Evening Comes to an End

    Day 6: Epcot Rope Drop
    Lunch and Characters in the World Showcase
    A Meet with the Disney Family
    A Lovely Boat Ride
    Downtown Disney

    Day 7: Tusker House Breakfast
    Another Rope Drop Victory
    Drums and a Bug
    Finishing up the Animal Kingdom
    A Fun Afternoon at Old Key West
    Characters at Hollywood Studios
    Hollywood Studio Evening

    A Cruise Interlude
    The Cruise Part II
    Day 3 of the Cruise
    The Cruise Comes to an End

    Day 8: The Boys are off on another Pirate Adventure
    Pick a Pearl
    Our DVC Home
    Our little pirates are back
    Beaches 'n Cream and a Hob Nob Run
    Hundred Acre Woods Friends and a Pirate Pool
    Back to the Magic Kingdom
    Disaster Averted and a Yummy Plaza Meal
    More Magic Kingdom
    Main Street Electrical Parade
    Bye Bye Magic Kingdom

    Day 9: Downtown Disney
    Universal Here We Come
    Getting Wet

    Day 10: Harry Potter at Last
    The Forbidden Journey
    Seuss Landing
    More Islands of Adventure
    We get Wet and Some Seuss Characters
    The Day Comes to an End

    Day 11: Another Harry Potter Morning
    Another Walk Through Hogwarts
    Bye Bye Orlando

    The Journey Home

    Final Thoughts

    A Darling Family Halloween Trip to Neverland
  2. tink7824

    tink7824 Earning My Ears

    Mar 27, 2010
    Hi there! I plan on following your TR! I'm looking forward to your next post! :)
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  4. mickeystoontown

    mickeystoontown DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2006
    I remember reading along on another one of your reports. Your kids have grown and are still just as adorable.

    Looking forward to more!
  5. Angies1274

    Angies1274 DIS Veteran

    Sep 7, 2007
    YAY!:yay: You started it!! I can't wait to read along!!!:goodvibes
  6. MiaBella05

    MiaBella05 DIS Veteran

    Oct 7, 2006
    popcorn:: joining in can't wait to read about your adventures! popcorn::
  7. 2Tiggers

    2Tiggers DIS Veteran

    Dec 30, 2008
    I must have known....I just looked this morning to see if you started your TR yet. I started reading another and just got back on here a minute to read a little more of it and saw that you started...I can't wait! :cool1: :woohoo:
  8. carissanboys

    carissanboys DIS Veteran

    Jan 23, 2004
    I'm here! :cool1:
  9. praisehisname

    praisehisname DIS Veteran

    Aug 5, 2003
    So excited that you've started! Going back to read now!
  10. Happy Elf

    Happy Elf DIS Veteran

    Jun 22, 2006
    Yay! You started! Can't wait to hear more!
  11. wdwgirl03

    wdwgirl03 <font color=red>I'm just a big Disney Freak! :-)<b

    Jan 8, 2004
    I'm here!
  12. Planning fanatic mom

    Planning fanatic mom DIS Veteran

    Apr 7, 2007
    I'm in. I can't wait to hear about HP!!popcorn::
  13. FairyGodmotherJen

    FairyGodmotherJen DIS Veteran

    Mar 17, 2007
    I'm here...can't wait to hear all about it!
  14. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

    Aug 23, 2007
    I'm hoping to get it up sometime tomorrow!

    It's good to see you again. I noticed you have a new trip report going. I need to get over there and check it out!

    I'm glad you're here!

    I have many adventures to share:goodvibes

    You must have psychic powers! I'm planning on the first real installment tomorrow!

    Wouldn't want to start without you:goodvibes
  15. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

    Aug 23, 2007
    I'll give you more to read soon!

    Hopefully you won't have to wait too long!

    :woohoo: Let's get this party started!

    You might have to wait awhile for the Harry Potter stuff. That is at the end of the trip. So you're going to have to slog through a whole week at Disney first.;)

    Get excited because you will actually be in the report!:laughing:
  16. cdotla

    cdotla Trish

    Jul 13, 2006
    Yay! Bring it on!!!:banana:

    Can't wait to hear all about the trip!:goodvibes
  17. belle8306

    belle8306 DIS Veteran

    Mar 26, 2007
    I made it! I am looking forward to hearing about your trip!:goodvibes
  18. Planning fanatic mom

    Planning fanatic mom DIS Veteran

    Apr 7, 2007
    That's OK because we were at Disney the same time you were. I like to read TRs that take place the same time that we were there. It's going to be fun.:wizard:
  19. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

    Aug 23, 2007
    First installment coming up!

    Glad that you're here!

    How was your trip? I hope it was as great as ours!
  20. dismagiclover

    dismagiclover Mrs. Darling: Mom to Wendy, John & Michael

    Aug 23, 2007
    I woke up this morning and jumped out of bed. I was going to Disney World:cool1: Everything was pretty much ready. All we had to do was wait until it was time to go. The Auto Train leaves Lorton Virginia at 4:00 pm, but we needed to be there by around 1:00 because we had an oversized car. (It’s a mini-van which is oversize for the Auto Train.) It would be about an hour drive and I wanted to stop for lunch so the plan was to leave around 11:00. DH wasn't joining us in Florida for another week because he had to work. (Someone has to pay for these trips, right?) He wanted to see us off though so he was coming home for lunch to say goodbye. I think the real reason was he wanted to watch some of a soccer game.;) The kids and I puttered away the morning and DH arrived promptly at 11:00 to say goodbye. We all gave him hugs and I felt a pang of guilt as we headed off on our adventure without him. We all really did miss him. After all we were leaving him alone on Father’s Day.:guilty: Obviously we didn’t miss him enough to stay behind though! So we hopped in the car, made a Chick Fil A stop (I have a bit of a Chick Fil A problem.:rolleyes1) Then we filled up the tank and were off to Lorton. We made good time and pulled into the station around 12:30. They took our keys and directed us into the station to wait until it was loading time. We found a seat in the waiting room and pulled out some of the activities we’d brought for the train.

    Here is Michael with his DS


    Wendy talked the boys into playing Uno. Notice they didn’t put their DS’s down though.:rolleyes:


    They had coloring stuff, books, etc and kept busy until we were called to board. This was around 2:30 I think.

    We’d reserved lower level coach seats because I’d read there were a small number of seats in each compartment and there was no walk through access. So nobody would be walking through the car in the middle of the night when we were trying to sleep. This was definitely a great call.:thumbsup2 We found our assigned seats and there was one other family of a mom and 3 kids in our car. There were only 12 seats and a large open area for wheelchairs. The seats were very spacious. Similar space wise to first class airline ticket seats. Here are some pictures of the kids in their seats.


    Notice the boys are still playing DS.:rolleyes1


    The train started moving a bit before 4:00 and we were on our way!:cheer2:

    Everybody was quite entertained for the hour we traveled until they called us to dinner. We had the 5:00 seating so we made our way upstairs and through a few cars until we came to the dining cars. Once there we were seated at a table with rolls and a couple pitchers awaiting us.


    Now the next part of the story makes me sound incredibly naïve, but it’s funny so I’m telling it. See the liquid in the picture. Now I’m sure most of you know what it is. I, however, was a bit unsure.:confused3 The boys assumed it was apple juice and I was a bit suspicious that it wasn’t. I’ve never been a drinker of any kind, but it did look a bit like wine. It just seemed strange to me that wine would be sitting there in a pitcher like that. So the boys clamored for apple juice, but I told them I wanted to taste it first. Well as I’m sure most of you know it wasn’t apple juice. After taking a sip I informed the kids it wasn’t apple juice. They immediately assumed that one sip was going to get me totally drunk:laughing: (remember neither DH or I ever drink so the kids aren’t around it much). I assured them I would be just fine and completely functional, but they were all still a bit skeptical. Wendy especially kept a close eye on me for the remainder of the meal.:rotfl2:

    Speaking of the meal, it was quite tasty. No pictures, but I had a yummy chicken dish and the kids enjoyed their meals too. They even brought us dessert. As we ate we watched the countryside whiz by. Definitely the way to travel.:cool1: After dinner we headed back to our car. The Princess and the Frog was showing in the lounge, but my kids didn’t have any interest in watching it. The boys made friends with the other little boy in our car. They bonded over their DS’s.;) Wendy colored, drew and read her book. I relaxed and finished up New Moon (perfect vacation reading). Soon it was 9:00 and they turned the overhead lights out. We all changed into our PJ’s and settled in for the night. The sleeping arrangements turned out better than I’d hoped. We didn’t get a sleeper car because it was $300 more. We were just planning to get as much sleep as we could in our seats. We basically had 6 seats to split between the 4 of us. Michael, however, loves to sleep on the floor. So he laid down in the open handicap area. That left the rest of us with two seats each to spread out on. Not as comfy as a bed, but we could actually lay down. Michael and John both slept great the whole night. Wendy had a bit of trouble falling asleep, but still had a fairly restful night. I even managed to get a few hours in. Though it was cramped, the train rocked which was quite soothing. Was it the best night’s sleep I’ve ever had? Of course not, but I’ve had much worse nights. I’d definitely do it again. So we all settled in knowing that when the sun came up we’d be in Florida!:goodvibes

    Up next: We arrive at Disney World!
  21. Planning fanatic mom

    Planning fanatic mom DIS Veteran

    Apr 7, 2007
    We have always toyed with the idea of the auto train. I'm glad you had a great experience. Were there changing rooms to change in?? What about the bathrooms? Are they like airplanes?? Just curious??

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