We went back to Disney - A July '19 trip report - Updated 09-19 - Animal Kingdom - Part 3

Ruthie5671

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 19, 2009
Hello my beautiful DIS friends and welcome to another Ruthie trip report. I hope that my PTR readers can follow over and that I have some new readers along the way. Allow me to tell you a little bit about my family and about our trip.

Who are we?

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I am Ruthie and that is my darling husband Tony. We hail from Kentucky and have been married for nine years. I am a social worker by day and a ride share driver on the weekends. The "side gig" money has really made this trip happen. Tony is a security guard part-time and because I work so much, he does most of the heavy lifting around the house. His "honey do" list is ever changing and flowing. In all honesty, I would be lost without Tony. He is my heart and soul and cannot imagine life without him. If you have read my previous trip reports, you know that I have a life long love affair with Disney, while Tony has only recently drunk the Disney Kool-Aid. But I think this trip really sealed the deal. He finally admitted to really liking character dining. He is one of us now!!!! (Insert evil laugh)

A few details

We travel via our minivan and break the drive up into two days. I am the only one allowed to drive. Basically because Tony is just an awful driver and I am an even worse passenger. So our trip was leaving KY on the morning of July 4th and driving to Valdosta, GA. That would have us about four hours away from the magic on July 5th. We stayed at All-Star Music for seven nights in a fully accessible handicapped room. Both Tony and I use ECV's and having the larger room with more space makes it easier to have both scooters in the room. We had five day park passes, but did not have the hopper option. We had one day at Disney Springs and one rest day. This trip had a lot of up's and a lot of down's. And a lot of rain.

Some of the highlights/lowlights included:

The best day ever!
The worst day ever!
A call to EMS
Seeing Illuminations for the last time
So much rain my shoes are still wet
Happily Ever After and Festival of Fantasy Parade front row seating
Even more rain
Character dining
So many photopass pictures

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Disney 3.jpg

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Are you intrigued? I hope so! More to come . . .

Up next - is there traffic in Atlanta on a major holiday?
 

EvilVillainess

"I'm 99% sure I'm a Disney Villain"
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Yay my fellow Social Worker and looks like Evil Queen fan as well. I'm looking forward to hearing more about the trip!!!!
 
  • Ruthie5671

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2009
    I am excited to hear how your trip went!
    Stay tuned - we did a lot of things and I took a lot of pictures!

    Yay my fellow Social Worker and looks like Evil Queen fan as well. I'm looking forward to hearing more about the trip!!!!
    Hello fellow social worker!!! This was our first time meeting the Evil Queen. She was just amazing. That dinner was part of the best day ever.

    I'll be following! Hope the high points outweighed the low ones!
    There were definitely more high's than low's. But I like to give full disclosure when writing my trip reports. Sometimes it's not all rainbows and unicorns. We had typhoon rain and plans that went out the window. But I would do it all again in a hot second!
     
  • Ruthie5671

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2009
    July 4th - really, really, really early
    I was never so happy as when I left work the afternoon/evening of July 3rd and was headed home to do the last little bit of chores. You know the dumb things - one more load of laundry, run the dishwasher, take out the trash, finish packing. Our plan was to try and go to sleep early and leave out really early. Our target time to be on the road was 4:00 AM.

    Yeah, we're crazy.

    As usual, I had Tony do all the loading and unloading of the van (I'm a delicate flower). For a trip that was nine days, we ended up with one large suitcase, one medium suitcase, the cooler, car snacks and a bag of random things - phone charger, Bluetooth speaker, things like that. Tony loaded up the majority of the things the night before, and surprisingly we both headed to bed about 9:30.

    And I was wide awake at 1:30. I had slept pretty good, but woke up like someone had kicked me in my butt and said "get out of bed - it's time to go to Disney"!!! Taking this hint, I hopped in the shower and got my day going. Tony heard me (because I was not being quiet) and in record time the remainder of the van was loaded and we were on our way out the door. It was hot. It was muggy. It was pitch dark outside. A quick stop to Speedway for caffeine and ice for the cooler and we were on our way to I-75 south.

    Disney 6.jpg

    We seemed to be the only vehicle in the parking lot at that ungodly hour of the morning.

    Disney 5.jpg

    Angel mom always travels with us, and you can see by the time that it was 2:20 AM.

    There really isn't too much to report on a travel day. I listed to my 80's on 8 station and sang loud and proud. Tony watched some Netflix and took a few power naps. There was absolutely little to no traffic. It was probably because of the time we left or just that it was a major holiday, but we zipped thru Kentucky and a good part of Tennessee before I hit a wall. The fact that I had been up for about five hours really hit me hard. No amount of caffeine was going to help, and I needed to stop and close my eyes for a few minutes. So while the sun was rising on the day, we stopped at a rest area and took a little nap. After about 45 minutes I woke up and felt really refreshed. Tony was still snoring, but I took care of that problem quickly! I might be the meanest wife ever. We drove another couple of hours until we got into Georgia and stopped for breakfast. Tony had one request for food - Cracker Barrel.

    Cracker barrel.jpg

    Not my picture!

    Who am I to say no to cute bottles of maple syrup and hash brown casserole??? It was crowded, but we were able to be seated quickly. Now I don't remember exactly what we ate, but there were eggs, biscuits, hash brown casserole and bacon involved. This made our tummies full and gave us the energy we needed to keep moving forward. The traffic had still been really light, but we were getting close to the seventh circle of hell - AKA - Atlanta. I thought that given it was a holiday, the traffic in and around Atlanta wouldn't be too bad. The girls at work kept telling me I was crazy and to brace myself for people everywhere.

    Guess who was right???

    That would be me!!!!

    We literally zipped thru downtown Atlanta like we owned the place. It was simply divine! Our final destination for the evening was Valdosta at the Candlewood Inn and Suites. We had stayed there previously and I had enough points to cover the night in full, so I was fine to stay there again. All we had to do was make it to exit number 18. I honestly think that someone stretched the road between Macon and Valdosta. While in hindsight I know that we were making excellent time, at that moment in my life, we couldn't get there fast enough. I was tired of being in the van. Tired of all of my radio stations. Just tired. We finally arrived and I was so tired that not one single picture was taken. Check in was easy and we were in a king sized room. Since all the rooms are suites, there was a "kitchen", work table and a nice, big bathroom. Tony unloaded the van (I'm still a delicate flower) and we got all settled in. Even before we left, I knew that once we got into the hotel there was no way I'd be going anywhere. So I had already downloaded the Door Dash app to my phone. We ordered dinner from Applebee's (we both got burgers - nothing special) and snuggled down into the bed nice and early. I have no memory of falling asleep.

    July 5th - HELLO FLORIDA!!
    And the next morning, I felt like a new woman. It might have been because I had just slept like a log for 10 hours or the fact that we were a mere 18 miles from Florida. But I was up and ready to go!

    Disney 7.jpg

    I was pretty happy that morning! Tony was too.

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    And we were on the road. To see the first of my two favorite signs!

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    It just makes my heart happy to pass by this sign and for Google maps to say "welcome to Florida". Why thank you Ms. Google. We're happy to be here. The drive was really smooth and I was pretty hyper and I'm sure quite irritating to Tony. I woo-hoo with every Ron Jon surf shop sign and get jumpy with every Disney advertisement. Yes my friends, I'm a child. But when I see this, I actually tear up.

    Disney 10.jpg

    I'm not the only one who tears up when you pass this sign. Come on - admit it!!!

    I pulled over to the side of the road to take this picture. Well, I took three just to make sure that one came out good. They all came out good - I wasn't in a moving vehicle!!!

    Up next - check in time and the official start of vacation - when you board the first bus
     

    Ruthie5671

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2009
    Waiting, impatiently :)
    No need to be impatient - an update is up and ready to be read!!!

    Excited to read your report! You and Tony are so cute together!
    Oh thank you - I am the most luckiest!

    Following! I love your reports and can't wait to hear all about your trip!
    Thanks for following over!!! I love reading your reports too - your boys are adorable.

    The Evil Queen pic is great!!! Can't wait to hear all about it.
    The Evil Queen was just amazing. Part of the best day ever - but it will take some time to get there!
     
  • DISNEY1975

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 5, 2008
    AWESOME! Ive always wanted to go to a cracker barrel (and a Sonic!!). Hmmm...maybe Ill see if there is one in Orlando. I have a couple off site meals to plan before the Disney portion of our trip!

    Glad you didnt fall asleep at the wheel! Cant wait to read and see your next update!!

    Edit...just looked at Cracker Barrel locations and saw they have one in Kissimmee 7 miles from where I will be staying!! So excited :) Now I need to find a Sonic (seen commercials my whole life, but there are NONE around me!! Ill probably hate it, but I just want to try the tots and mocktails) !!!
     
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    valleygirl

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Feb 23, 2005
    I'm so happy to see another one of your trip reports. I read your other reports and loved them. Looking forward to hearing about the rest of your trip.
     

    rdkeim

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2006
    You're off to a great start! For me Cracker Barrel = vacation. They have the best pancakes. Glad you took a break when you got sleepy. But you made it to Disney - yay!
     

    Ruthie5671

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2009
    Whereja go? !!!
    Hey friends - sorry for the long silence. I have been sick. Very, very sick. Long story short, it actually started in Disney. As part of the #worstdayever, I had a small mishap on the Nemo ride in EPCOT and scratched up my leg. Fast forward to 1 1/2 weeks ago, the injury to my leg was oozing that I could not get to stop and I began running a fever. After three days of not being able to crack the fever and it getting up to 103, I went to the emergency room and was hospitalized for a week.

    Boo boo 1.jpgBoo boo 2.jpgBoo boo 3.jpg

    I was discharged home on Friday and came back to work today. I'm not sure that I am ready to be back to work, but I am here nonetheless. I hope you'll continue to be patient with me as I continue to get my strength back and will press on with my story! Hopefully tomorrow I'll feel like putting up an installment. There's a lot to tell.
     


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