The Slowpokes' Guide to WDW aka the kids 1st trip! - A Sept 2018 report- UPDATED 2/11/2019

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by dbb727, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    Your renamings are too funny, especially bc Brynn was a contender for “B’s” name! So weird you would pick that!
     
  2. 21LizSalute

    21LizSalute Earning My Ears

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    Loving this trip report! Can't wait to see more of your daughter's costume changes :D
     
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  4. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake May the force be with you!

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    So, I have 2 methods I use. First, if I need to edit the video (i.e. my iPhone was upside down so the video is flipped), I use Windows Movie Maker. I don't know if that is standard on PCs, but it was on mine. There may be other services online. It also lets me trim down the sides if I want to cut things out, or merge multiple clips into one.

    Then if I want to upload the whole video with sound, I use Youtube. Make sure you have a (free) account and then click the little camera on the top right to "create a video". You can change permissions to be private, unlisted, etc. After it uploads, on the video page, click "share" and a box will pop up. Copy the link, then on the Dis post click on the film strip icon. It's the one in the box as the Emojis and photo icon. Paste the link into there and click embed and then it will go into the post.

    Second way is if I just want to show a short clip and don't care about sound. I make a gif. I use giphy. You may need to also have an account, but it's free and simple enough. On the top right click "Create". Upload the video you want to post, then click through and you can change the length of the gif, the start time, add stickers, privacy, etc. Once it is all created, I go to "copy link", copy the link in the "gif link" line, go to the Dis post, click the Image upload icon at the top (next to the emoji icon), and paste the gif link, which imbeds it into the post.

    Hopefully that helps! I'm sure there are other methods, but these are the ones I've found easiest for myself!

    It's always such a shame when I hear people skipping AK! I looove AK and could easily have a trip where that is the only park I visit!

    Congrats! It should be fun to have a solo trip!

    That is pretty hilarious!
     
  5. TheOneWithTheTriplets

    TheOneWithTheTriplets DIS Veteran

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    This is such a frustrating balance. You don't want to be too particular, there has to be room for flexibility, but then you know why you planned it the other way to begin with and in the back of your mind you're pretty sure you were right the first time.

    Oh no, that stinks! At least you were able to get in the SDMT before he had to call it

    Good tip! I'm thinking the 5 of us will pick 2 or 3 different ones to all share.

    Ugh, the color battle. My girls have been color coded since birth so each of them knows what "her" color is. They're much better about it now but, when they were 2, I'd have to keep looping through, "Yes, sweetie, purple is your color in our family but other kids here like purple, too." At least he got over it quickly. Mine were 50:50 on whether they'd just move on or if I'd hear about it for the rest of the day.

    Nope, you're not a bad mom. That's objectively hilarious.
     
  6. MaleDisneyBeliever

    MaleDisneyBeliever Mouseketeer

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    Coming along for the ride and following. Enjoying it so far
     
  7. mustinjourney

    mustinjourney DIS Veteran

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    The resort monorail takes a while -- especially in the AM and during PM dinner times.

    If you ever do Poly again -- especially the DVC side, you are MUCH better off walking over to the TTC and riding the express monorail. It takes about half the time.


    Have you seen the movie? The dream sequence is very trippy.

    My oldest DD gets so shy around them and plays with her hair. Then as soon as we would leave, she'd start to point and jump up and down about how awesome it was to meet them.

    I typically use the APP first and if it doesn't work -- I shut the app down and reopen. If that doesn't work, then I try the website. If that doesn't work, then I will switch off the Disney WiFi and just go cellular.

    If that doesn't work, I also have a second phone (work phone) that is a samsung (my phone is iphone)--and the android app seems to give me less problems.

    I did the same thing my first trip -- except I thought it would be feasible to stick to the timeline. Within 2 hours of the first day, I realized it was hopeless. Moving around with 2 kids and stroller and everything else took way longer than I would have thought.

    This is pretty good advice. I wish I would have gotten that before our first trip -- definitely would have better prepared me for what was in store.

    Solo trips are so much fun! and the weather should be much better too!!!
     
  8. mustinjourney

    mustinjourney DIS Veteran

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    Speedway is pretty overrated anyways -- so no big miss. My DD thought she'd like it and I let her steer for a bit when she was 3 or 4, but then she couldn't keep it stable and we started going side to side pretty badly bumping into the center rail. She then declared it was the worst ride ever and told me to drive.

    That is an EXTREMELY ambitious plan for a family with little kids!

    My wife does this to me all the time. I spend hours figuring out the best ways to do our touring -- and I will even ask if she wants to go over it or give suggestions. She never does prior to the trip. Then as soon as we get there, she's got all kinds of ideas about what we should do.

    :mad:


    I wonder if he was really just thinking -- this ride is right here. My back is killing me, and we'll be able to sit down for 12 minutes.

    My Daddy/daughter trip only my name posted too. DD was NOT happy about that! It didn't help that I teased her and said I guess that daddy is the only important person on the boat. :rotfl2:

    Breakfast is definitely overpriced for what it is...but the PPO is worth at least $5 to $10 if you don't have a 7DMT or PP FP. Of course, two out of the three times I've done it, 7DMT wasn't even operating at opening b/c it had some technical issues. :sad:

    Yeah -- I'm pretty squished in that thing. It's certainly a tight fit.

    Disney did a great job with this area. My kids love it. Although we don't do it too often since I usually have a FP for this ride.

    Solid move. I once had a battle of wills with my youngest. She wanted to be carried from CRT breakfast to the carousel. We told her she needed to walk (this was like 9:30 am and she had been sitting at breakfast, so it wasn't like she was physically exhausted). She then proceeded to start with the tears. I then placed her in a corner of the castle in timeout. She stayed there for 15 minutes.

    It is actually a great picture and video b/c she's wearing a cinderella dress and is standing in the corner of a wall at the Castle. Every year it pops up on my Facebook feed and I get a nice chuckle.

    been there! It's the same issue with the buses too. That's why the monorail is awesome!

    I've definitely had a meltdown over the stroller folding/unfolding.

    Our last trip, I was sliding the stroller in the space and bumped someone's elbow pretty good that they had draped across the back of their bench. Felt bad about that one.
     
  9. Suejacken

    Suejacken Mouseketeer

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    I have a question if you don’t mind. We are flying down in June. My great nephew will be a couple weeks shy of his 2nd birthday. We got him his own seat on the plane. Did your son have his own seat and if so did you have to have any special seat belt or restraint for him?
     
  10. mustinjourney

    mustinjourney DIS Veteran

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    I have flown with a sub 2 year old several times. We have left a really young baby in the baby seat, as well as use the airplane travel harness.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0012E4FV8/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
     
  11. Suejacken

    Suejacken Mouseketeer

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    Thank you so much for the quick reply. I will let my niece know. Your children are absolutely adorable. We plan on taking dress up outfits for her 5 and 7 year olds for princess pics too
     
  12. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    Since my son is over 2, he was required to have his own seat. (If under two, you can have them as a lap child for free, but I find that over the age of one it gets pretty uncomfortable to hold a toddler on your lap so kudos for buying his own seat).
    Personally we didn’t use any special restraint as I was confident he could stay seated for the 2hr flight, but safety experts will tell you to bring the child’s car seat on the plane or use a FAA approved seat restraints like the CARES harness someone linked above.

    Thanks for the kind words, hope you enjoy your trip with three young ones!
     
  13. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for the detailed explanation, I’ll try making a youtube account when I get some free time.
     
  14. Suejacken

    Suejacken Mouseketeer

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    Thank you for the info. We bought his own ticket for the reason you mentioned about being uncomfortable sitting on his parents lap for that length of time. I think we might get one of the FAA restraints since we aren’t taking a car seat because I can imagine him getting a little antsy. Lol. It will be an adventure because my niece also has a 5 and 7 year old and they have never flown before. They won’t find out they are going until the day we leave so they will all be a little excited
     
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  15. Jenny Sanders

    Jenny Sanders DIS Veteran

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    Joining in! Great start to vaca!!!
     
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  16. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    I'm back! I didn't forget, life just gets away from you sometimes. Let's jump back in to the end of our first park day:

    "Stranded on the Monorail"
    Monday September 17, 2018
    Day 2, Part3

    So the kids and I had taken the railroad back to Main St station and were heading out of the park. Both kids were DONE, half- asleep in the stroller, and I was tempted to try and stick it out so I could at least watch the parade while they slept (it was at 2pm that day and it was about 1:30pm at this point) but I was also a sweaty mess and was looking forward to getting back to the room to shower.
    IMG_1092.jpg

    View of Main St while exiting the train station

    We headed over to the resort monorail, which by the way is a pain to push a double stroller up those ramps, and only waited a few minutes before boarding. When we were boarding, I noticed there was a monorail train stuck halfway between the Grand Floridian and MK, and I thought to myself, huh that’s weird. I couldn’t exactly tell which line it was on, figured maybe it was waiting to pull into the station at MK although that didn’t seem right because I would think the trains are on a better schedule where they wouldn’t get so close together, but whatever, I didn’t give it too much thought.
    IMG_4753.JPG

    View of GF

    Everything was going great, a nice relaxing ride back to the Poly. I still thinks it's so cool going straight into the Contemporary, and enjoyed showing this to the kids. Next stop was TTC, and here is where we hit a bit of a snafu. The doors opened as usual to let passengers off, new passengers joined on, and then…….the doors never closed. After another minute or two an announcement came on that said something like “ we apologize but there will be a brief delay as another monorail needs to be taken off the tracks before our train can continue on its journey.” :scared:

    WHA??? I don’t know how long it takes to remove a malfunctioning monorail, but I was guessing it’s at least 30minutes. My first thought was panic, because it was already getting late for DS's nap and I could feel the chance of him actually napping slipping away. As you may have already noticed, I don’t like waiting in lines, or just waiting around unnecessarily for anything, so there was no way I was just gonna sit there without any time estimate as to when the train would resume.

    Luckily, my second thought was “duh, there is a walking path to Poly from TTC, so I can just find that.” In that moment I was so glad for choosing our hotel, for being an over-planner, and thankful the shutdown didn’t occur back at Contemporary (although I wouldn’t have been stranded, we could’ve just walked back to MK and taken the boat, but again it was really HOT!). I hightailed it off that monorail, several passengers were staring at me, I guess thinking where are you going? I was one of the first to exit, but afterwards I noticed several more people following suit. I even tried to warn some people heading UP the ramp, that they should take the ferry instead but they obviously didn’t want my advice and they kept on walking towards the train. :confused3
    IMG_3129.jpg

    It was actually nice to see where the ferrys load, and this awesome view of the castle. I can see how this would be a great place to watch fireworks. I had never been to the TTC, at least not since I was a child, but I found the path to the Poly easily enough and we were back in our room by 2pm.
    Poly.jpg


    I’m not 100% sure if DS did nap this day, but we enjoyed relaxing in the room with air conditioning. DH was doing ok, he had been laying flat and resting his back the past two hours. We had big plans tonight so I was hoping he’d feel reinvigorated enough to join us. I was tempted to take DD to the pool for a little bit, but ultimately we just enjoyed the A/C. She was content to play with her princess toys on the little pull down bed, and I was happy to shower and get changed into fresh clothes. My plan was to get back into the park around 5:00, so we headed over to Cpt Cook’s for a quick dinner around 4:30pm

    We should have split meals tonight because we were heading to a dessert party in two hours but it didn’t work out that way. DD wanted a hot dog but DS didn’t so I got them separate kids meals which was way too much food. I got a lid and took the leftover fries with us, which of course no one ate later and I ended up throwing away the next day. I had been looking forward to trying the Pork Nachos that I heard rave reviews about, but DH wasn’t interested so he got the grilled chicken dinner.

    I was soo pumped for those nachos…………unfortunately they just didn’t do it for me. :sad:
    The standout was the crunchiness of the homemade potato chips but I thought the proportion of spicy mayo was too much. I found it odd to have spicy mayo being substituted for queso basically. It would have been better with queso, and just a little topping of spicy mayo on the pork, but not all over the chips. Maybe I’m in the minority. I like spicy mayo on sushi, but I don’t want to eat a gallon of it. I also don’t like regular mayo very much but could eat queso EVERY day of the week so it may just be a personal choice. But I digress. I only ate about half of the nachos and that’s okay, I needed to save room because tonight we were planning to do the…….HEA Dessert Party!!


    Next we hopped on the monorail and headed back to MK.

    IMG_1095.jpg


    Our first stop was to meet the characters at Town Square Theater. Earlier in the day, I had changed one of DH’s morning FP+ to a Mickey M&G. I think I could only get 1 which was fine since DS was under 3 he didn’t need his own ticket/FP, so DH would just take him. I was hoping to get a FP+ for Tinkerbell but they were all gone. We decided she was worth the wait bc it’s one of our favorite characters and we were wearing our shirts to get us in the mood for her flight during HEA.

    ZIMG_0007.jpg

    The plan was to split up and the girls would do Tinkerbell while boys saw Mickey, but we decided for everyone to go through Tinkerbell line first since FP+ for Mickey didn’t start until 5:45 anyhow. We got in line at 5:30 with a posted wait time of 30min, and we meeting Tink at 5:50 so not terrible.

    D1-Tink.jpg
    This was a great interaction, Tink loved DD’s bow! Wow, Tinkerbell can talk though, I don’t even know what she was saying but you couldn’t get a word in.


    I do wish they still had it where you could meet some of the other fairies. The last time we were at WDW in 2012, the fairies met over in Adventureland and you got to meet two (Tink + a rotating friend, we met Rosetta). My niece and now my daughter are both huge fans of the fairy movies/books so it’d be nice if they had a bigger presence in the parks. While I’m wishing for things, I desperately want a Moana attraction or M&G too!

    While the boys jumped in the Mickey FP+ line, I booked DD and I for a FP+ on Aladdin’s Flying Carpets so off to Adventureland we went.
    IMG_3136.jpg
    This was the first time DD was not in a stroller, and since it was late in the day there definitely was a bit of whining about the “long” walk but we made it. We were a few minutes early for out fastpasss, but then I realized there wasn’t even anyone in the standby line. I was so proud of actually booking that FP+ since the system had been down most of the day, but turns out it wasn’t even needed. Oh well. :rolleyes1


    Call me crazy, but I really enjoy the spinner rides, even as an adult. We were having a great ride on the carpet, and I was trying to video DD at the controls when all of a sudden she started screaming as we were hit with water! Ahh, I forgot about the camel spitting! :eek:Last time I was on this ride, it was January and the water had been off. I should have known because we almost got splashed while approaching the ride by the camel out front but I just didn’t remember that nuance on the ride. It took me a full 10-20seconds to figure out why we were wet, then grab the controls from DD to get us higher above the camel before we made a full 360. :rotfl:It was pretty funny, except that we had a passenger in the back of the vehicle so I felt bad that she got wet also unexpectedly since we were in control of the height and didn’t realize it was coming. She was a good sport about it, though.

    It was 6:15 when we exited, and the boys actually had a 15-20 min wait for Mickey even with the FP, so they were just heading up Main St as well.
    d-mickey.jpg
    The wait was worth it though. Mickey was the only character DS would really get excited talking about and this Mickey took lots of time to make sure he wasn't scared. It was so sweet to see these pics of Mickey down on the ground with him, and there are some smiling pics standing up too. It was a nice Daddy/son moment and I'm glad PP captured it.

    We decided to meet in Tomorrowland since I was hoping for a ride on People Mover before our big event of the night.
    The boys were waiting near the entrance to Tomorrowland, and DH was capturing an adorable moment.

    ducks.jpg

    DS was so excited about these ducks. It’s one of his favorite animals, we often go to a local shopping area that has ducks and he loves to follow them and watch them. So, we took a few minutes for him to enjoy and of course make jokes about how we could have saved a lot of money just taking him to a free public park. I love this memory though, right in the middle of the hub, with the castle looming and all the sounds of rides and vendors selling bubble wands, and DS is so happy to simply watch the nature.

    Our check-in for HEA party started at 6:30, and while I didn’t feel a lot of pressure to be exactly on time, I was realizing that walking to PM and enjoying that ride was going to be out of the question since then I would be stressed to rush back and get a “good” place secured in the garden viewing area. It was only a few minutes until 6:30 at this point, so I glanced over at Tomorrowland Terrace and saw a HUGE line outside! :scared:

    Up next: HEA Dessert Party...did we like it?
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
  17. StarWarsMomofGirls!

    StarWarsMomofGirls! DIS Veteran

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    Yes to both of those! We got to meet Vidia back then, and she was the best! So much sass. And a dedicated Moana meet would be super popular.


    It is so nice when you have the really good characters like that!


    Can't wait to hear how you liked it. We have one booked for our trip in 2 weeks.
     
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  18. TheOneWithTheTriplets

    TheOneWithTheTriplets DIS Veteran

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    Great thinking! So much better to be walking to the Poly and your air conditioned room than stuck on the train. Planning knowledge for the win.

    Oh no! We're undecided on what to do on arrival day as our flight lands at 2pm. We've got exploring Crescent Lake (we're staying at BWV), a monorail resort tour, or a DS tour all on our list, with plans to use snacks and QS credits. I had been leaning towards the monorail QS/snack tour because of these nachos, among other things. Sorry they fell flat for you.

    Yes! Moana is an awesome role model in addition to being a super popular character and deserves a permanent M&G. I'm bummed she doesn't have one yet.

    My kids are super excited to potentially get spit on by a camel! Good to know it's turned off on cooler days, I can prepare them.

    Bump, bum, BUUUUMMM (that's my cliffhanger sound effect). Isn't the whole point of the dessert parties that you don't get stuck waiting in long lines? What was causing the back up? I'm intrigued.
     
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  19. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    I wouldn't cross them off your list just yet, they aren't my jam but you might feel differently. And a monorail trip to the poly would be worth it just to stop in Trader Sams :cool1:


    Yes, the whole point is to not waste time waiting around! Although, I don't think a bunch of other people feel the same way, which you'll see in my next segment....
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
  20. dbb727

    dbb727 Mouseketeer

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    End of Day 2: HEA Dessert Party!!

    We had sadly decided to abandon any plans to make it to PeopleMover, so I have still NEVER been on this (hoping to rectify that situation on my solo trip). I still feel kinda bad about not even stepping foot in Tomorrowland this trip, but you can’t do it all right?

    HEA was scheduled for 8:00pm that night, so the “before” garden party had a check-in time of 6:30pm. Since we could see the line for the dessert party stretching out from Tomorrowland Terrace, it prompted us to make out way over there. The line was at least 15-20 parties deep, and no CM at the outdoor podium. Luckily right before we stepped into this line, I recalled reading that there are two separate check-ins, one for Terrace seating and one for Garden View, so I looked around a bit more, walked to the front and sure enough, there was another podium further into the restaurant. I inquired about where I should check-in for our ADR, and low and behold it was at THIS interior podium, where there was no line because I think we were one of the last ones. When we were shown to our table, we had the last spot on the top tier. I think they fill in the next level as well so there could have been more people after us, but still I was amazed at how many people were already sitting and eating at 6:35. o_O

    Even when I think of all those people waiting in the line outside, obviously for the terrace seating which was assigned at 6:45pm, I don’t understand wanting to get there so early for an experience where you have reserved area and a guarantee that the food is replenished. It just feels like a waste of time to be there 1.5 hours before HEA, when the whole point of the dessert party is to NOT have to stake out a spot for over an hour in the hub. Of course, I am a hypocrite because we were basically doing the same thing.:confused3

    The main reason for us was we were exhausted at this point in the day. Even with that afternoon break, the humidity and long hours was draining everyone, and I couldn’t be happier to just SIT. Also, the garden party had recently added the “after party” a month of so earlier, and it was a concern for a lot of people, myself included, that the “after party” guests would have better view selection and take up all the good spots in the garden first. This is kind of a silly concern, as any place in the garden still gives you room to move around if you feel like your view gets blocked, you can just shift to another spot, which is not an option when crammed in the Hub. In the end, there was plenty of room in the garden, but having not done a party before and having the potential for a larger crowd than past reviews created a little anxiety to get out to the garden as quickly as possible, and I do think that’s partially why so many people had arrived so promptly.

    dessert.jpg

    As I said above, I was so happy to sit, my brain was exhausted and it was great to just decompress. So here comes the funny part of the night. A little background: DH told me earlier that he was fine to go to the party but wasn’t planning to eat many desserts. No worries, I told him that the main reason to book the party from my perspective was to not stress about finding a spot, then holding our place for an hour with two kids or be crowded in the Hub. Honestly, if we didn’t book the party, I think we would have just watched the fireworks from the beach at Poly, but I really wanted to be in the park and see the projections so this was the way to do it. Desserts were just a bonus from my perspective, and DH bought this rationale and went along with it.

    Well sure enough, we sit down and I go up to get my first plate, then take each child to pick out what they want, then turn to my husband and say ok “your turn.” And he is like, “I told you I didn’t want to eat any desserts.”

    :rolleyes2 And he was dead serious. That man ate NOTHING. >:( I don’t know if he was proving a point or just really tired and in pain, but I was like, seriously, you know this is kinda expensive to be here, don’t you want just one chocolate covered strawberry? Ice cream? Spinach dip? Cracker? I’ll get it for you…. “no, no I’m not hungry for sweets.”:confused:

    I decided to let it go. I had to refocus on my sales pitch- the main reason to book was for the garden, not the food. I didn’t want to nag anymore since that wouldn’t have made anyone happy, so I just decided to eat enough for both of us! Haha.
    IMG_1115.jpg
    Here is my first of 3 or 4 plates. I did take a little to-go container of chocolate covered strawberries and macarons that I happily enjoyed the next day so that made me feel better about the whole thing.

    My kids honestly weren’t that into the whole thing either. They are pretty good about just eating what they want and not binging on sweets. DD has more self control then I do as she’ll just eat half a cookie or half a piece of cake and declare that she is done. (Who does that?:confused3) So the kids probably sampled 2 or 3 things each and then were over it.

    I also had a slight Mom Fail: somehow I completely missed the designated kid area when I went up to the buffet. They had make your own sundaes and a cookie or cupcake decorating thing, but the kids were happy with the selections off the main buffet so it worked out fine.

    Even with all that nonsense, the party was still great! My favorite items were actual the simple things: chocolate covered strawberries were ripe and fresh, and the macarons were well made. I also liked the strawberry tart, at first glance it looks kinda boring but flavor was good. Our family loves fresh fruit so that was a big hit. The savory items had just recently been added and I appreciated having cheese and crackers to balance out the sweet, didn’t mind the cold spinach dip, but the cheeseburger eggrolls were definitely not my thing. Even the title sounds unappetizing to me, those two items just don’t belong together in my mind, it was just a greasy oily mess, but maybe this appeals to some ????
    IMG_1112.jpg
    IMG_1113.jpg

    So we sat and ate for maybe 30 minutes then headed out to the garden a little after 7pm. I was trying not to be anxious and stressed about getting there early, (again the whole point of booking is to NOT have to stake out a spot super early), but of course I wanted to get a good spot and with everyone arriving and eating so early most people had moved out to the garden around this time. There was still plenty of open space, more people crowd towards the front of the garden but I was going with the DIS strategy of back rail and we were able to find a decent spot. Aside from having extra space when people instinctually push forward to see the projections, I found the back rail advantageous as I am short and I could kinda perch one butt cheek on it to give myself a rest and a little extra height. This proved to be invaluable as DS is afraid of fireworks plus it was past his bedtime so he wanted to be held the whole time and it allowed me to rest a little while holding 30lbs for 20 minutes. And I sat DD on the rail so she could see a little better, so it was a win-win.

    We had so much time before the show, but it was a welcome reprieve to just relax since I feel like the day had been so exhausting. Partly due to the heat, but also the constant organizing/planning/rearranging the schedule had taxed my brain. As much as I was trying to be in the moment, I also had been constantly juggling being on my phone to take the “perfect picture” or video, trying unsuccessfully to load MDX and switch FP+, pushing a 60+lb stroller, and attending to everyone’s needs so my brain was pretty overstimulated by this point.

    The $1 store light up gear was a big hit, so we had fun getting all decked out with bracelets, necklaces, swords and wands. My kids bedtime is between 7-8pm typically so just to be out at night time was fun for them.

    While in the garden, the couple next to us struck up a conversation with our family and it really was a highlight of the trip to just chat with them during that downtime. Exchanging stories about our day, our lives and being able to relax was such a nice change of pace. I figured they might be DIS followers as they were bi-annual visitors with DVC membership, but I chickened out on asking. emoji I didn’t even think to ask their names! Oh well. So, if you happened to be the retired couple, DVC members, on the back rail, with wife in an ECV at the HEA Garden party on Sept 17, then Hello! I really enjoyed our conversation J

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    While waiting we also spotted a PP photographer so of course we got a few shots. Boy did we look like sweaty messes though!

    Promptly at 8pm, the music on Main St stopped so a hush fell over the crowd. And then an announcement declared “Please forgive us but there will be a 10 minute delay to the start of HEA this evening.” Whaaa? There was no weather in the area at all. Seriously no rain forecast nearby, no lighting, not even windy, it was a perfectly clear (HUMID) night. A 10 minute delay is no biggie, but what if it was gonna be more than 10 minutes?? I was having a hard enough time keeping the kids awake, especially now that the sun was almost down. Was there a technical problem? Would Tinkerbell be able to fly? (This was a big deal for us as Tink fans)

    All my fears were alleviated when the show started exactly 10min later as promised. :tinker::mickeyjum It was never clear to me why the delay, and I believe I heard someone else mention the same thing happened later in the week also. It made me wonder if they purposefully delay on these 8pm closure nights because the sunset was at 7:58 so it wasn’t really pitch dark until at least 8:15pm but I am just making this up and have no evidence of that being true.

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    Happily Ever After was great! I had watched a little on youtube beforehand, so knew enough of the theme song to have it get stuck in my head and be able to follow along. It was everything I hoped it'd be, very magical to watch all the projections and fireworks, and having DD singing along to the Moana portion. Even though my butt and arms were going numb from trying to balance two kiddos while perching on the rail - holding DS with one arm and my other arm around DD so she didn’t fall backwards, it was still awesome and some of the best memories!
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    Thanks for sticking around through what was a very wordy description of our experience. I know most people’s question is simply “Is a dessert party worth it?” So here's the bottom line:

    Is it worth $65 for desserts? NO

    Did I see the value in reserved, not crowded standing area? YES

    Would we do the party again? Maybe.

    Definitely not on every visit and if we had a larger grouper requiring higher costs then it would be harder to justify, but I definitely saw the benefit during party season when it is so crowded due to less opportunities to see HEA.

    Even with DH not eating a damn thing, I have no regrets about spending the money on this as we really enjoyed the space to stretch out and unwind without having to guard a space. Every family situation is different, but for our family with two young kids, a short wife and a husband who doesn’t like crowds, this was worth the investment.

    :jumping1:

    The walkway leaving was definitely crowded but nothing I couldn’t deal with for a few minutes, I think I only hit 1 or 2 people with my stroller! They opened the back path between Tomorrowland and Main St so once in that area there was room to move more easily, and if people wouldn’t stop suddenly and change direction at the last second then I would never hit anyone, so it really wasn't my fault.:rotfl2:

    Since it was an 8pm closure, of course it was a mass exodus to the transportation area. And we made an interesting observation here, not sure if this happens every night but very very few people were taking the resort monorail. The express train to TTC was backed up WAAAAAY past the ramp, almost all the way to the entrance to MK and the resort train ramp was like ¼ full. It was soo overwhelmingly disproportionate. If I was going to the TTC, there is NO WAY I would have attempted that express monorail line. I assumed people just don’t realize that the resort monorail stops at TTC? Or they really think that “express” will be faster? Even if they run 2 or 3 trains on the express side, that line appeared like it was going to be at least a 45 min wait, and standing on an incline with a 60lb stroller, pushed up next to a bunch of sweaty people would not be doable for me. I didn’t get a chance to glance at the ferry but I would suspect it would have been better than that line.

    So, the resort side did have a minor wait but pales in comparison, I think we had to wait for one train and got on the 2nd. It was a bit crowded yet not as much as a subway ride at rush hour. Both kids were almost passed out by this point, and the other people on the train had fun trying to bet on which kid would fall asleep first, or if they would stay asleep. We had fun chatting with another couple who was doing a monorail bar crawl and next stop was Top of the World! Sounds more fun then the rest of my night.... We decided to exit at TTC and walk back to the room which was smart to keep everything dark so the kids would keep sleeping.
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    Now to end the day, we had the ultimate parent dilemma. Transfer the kids right into bed, and worry about bathing in the morning, or wake the sleeping children to bathe and change into pjs?? Knowing we had a breakfast ADR at 7:30, and how hot and sweaty we were, the obvious, although terrifying, correct choice was to clean everyone up before bed.

    I’m not exaggerating that they both were screaming bloody murder and you would have thought I was torturing someone if you walked near our room. I have never worked so quickly in my life! Due to Doug’s back, he couldn’t do any of the heavy lifting, couldn’t really even bend down to dress them either so basically I got in the shower with one child, stripped them, soaped and rinsed them while they shrieked and freaked out, then got out to dry and dress them(while still screaming in my face) meanwhile I am freezing and naked and dripping wet, then handed off 1st child to DH and repeated the whole thing. I felt so bad, it was torture for them and for me but it was one of those situations where rationale talking and calming voices weren’t gonna change anything so I just moved as fast as possible to get it over with. They were half asleep and it was what needed to be done but definitely not something I want to do again anytime soon. Luckily, DH got them both in their beds easily and by the time I finished my own shower they were both sleeping like perfect angels.:faint:

    While not the most fun part of the day, the ending still wouldn’t damper all the great experiences we had on our first MK day. Tomorrow, we were off to Epcot!

    Next Up: EPCOT day - Can we manage two TS meals before 1pm, plus F&W and lots of princess dresses!
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
  21. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2018
    Messages:
    949
    Joining in!

    I feel like you are a super Mom!

    I also had the same sentiments about the HEA dessert party. I stressed about getting there early enough to get a good spot but also felt like I spent just as much time waiting as I would have for free lol definitely fun to experience though!
     
    dbb727 likes this.

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