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Old 03-03-2013, 04:00 AM   #1
magichusky
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Arrow This Land is MY Land!!! A July 4th PTR ~ Updated 7/2: When is the fun gonna start??

Welcome to this absolutely sizzling (as advertised) July 4th PTR. I just made my ADRs and now it's official (a new trip never really becomes official until you've made your ADRs, right?). My Mom and I are planning a secret adventure to our "happy place" in early July, and yes, there are other people in our family but we're voting them off the island this time. Mom and I are very much alike b/c people always write us off as friendly and harmless but we are actually highly evolved haha. We have excellent mental fortitude and endurance; in other words, we tour WDW commando style and we LOVE it.



Since Mom and I are warriors, I thought that what could be more awesome for us than navigating a dilapidated rope bridge precariously suspended over a sinister pile of crocodiles Indiana Jones style? So yes, I'm considering surprising Mom w/ a Wild Africa Trek (I just came up w/ the idea last night!).

So, how did this Independence Day extravaganza come about? Read on, folks, for the "who, what, where, when, and why!"

NOTE: Not only will I be posting PTR material here, but I also wanted to post some pics from our December 2011 trip since I wasn't able to write a TR for it. My pics from the MK Christmas parade came out so well that I need to post them!

***THE WHO (aka the Cast of Characters)***


My MOM (I will from now on refer to my mother as Maureen, since she is "Mom" to me but "Maureen" to all of you!): Maureen is a third grade teacher and loves to watch "Once Upon a Time" and "Downton Abbey." Experience has proven that she is somehow a magnet for crazy people in WDW; she was rammed by a stroller from behind (I saw the whole thing, it was incredible) and had to defend our territory when some crazy lady tried to steal my curb space before the MK Christmas parade while I had gone to get us lunch. But, as I said before, Maureen is a warrior and prevailed. She's also a mean power walker.



ME (LAUREN): I'm 27, a grad student (yes, I'm almost done!), and made my first excursion to WDW when I was 25 (the anticipation was pretty extreme). My dream is to visit DL Paris, Norway, and Nepal (amongst other places) and I like to watch "The Amazing Race." Some of my must-do's at WDW are: searching for paint brushes on Tom Sawyer Island, Living w/ the Land, Maelstrom, and the Flights of Wonder show in AK.



VOTED OFF THE ISLAND- HEATHER (my sister): Heather is 35, my sister, a school counselor, and a tad bit crazy! She went to WDW once w/ my parents and me when we made our first trip in December 2010. I think my 4 yr old niece, Lily, has more patience than Heather does. Heather almost decided to come w/ us in July, but recently decided against it b/c she and her husband, Dave, are already going on 2 trips in the next few months. They have an evil parrot named Sushi who attacks houseguests from the air. Maureen and I refuse to set foot in that house. Heather was a bit of a cranky pants at WDW (I mean just look at her beating up this troll), so Maureen and I were surprised that she was interested in another trip- I guess I underestimated the Disney magic!



Heather & Dave:


Evil Sushi:


VOTED OFF THE ISLAND- My DAD: Dad aka Joe is a grumpy Marine/scary half German (that pic of him w/ the Beer stein is in the Biergarten, his favorite dining experience) who has even less patience than Heather does. He was so obnoxious on our last trip that he practically ruined our 'Ohana dinner. He usually just stays at SoG and plays golf all day. When he would venture out, he would almost always fall asleep at some point. I've compiled a few pics of him sleeping in weird places that I've displayed below. The weirdest place he fell asleep was probably in the middle of the Kilimanjaro Safari, but unfortunately I don't have photographic documentation of that particular incident. Needless to say, he is not allowed on our upcoming, "stress-free" escape trip!






HONORARY CAST MEMBER- LOKI: Loki is my best little buddy in the world. He's a 105 lb Siberian Husky and is regularly described by neighbors and onlookers as "noble," "regal," and "handsome." He has a particular way of walking that reminds me of the royal, white horses from Cinderella. We first met on February 2, 2008 and his adoption was finalized on 2/9/2008! Every time I drive to my parents' house for the weekend, he hears my car come up the street and absolutely KNOWS it's me. Maureen opens the door and he barrels down the driveway and body slams me!



***THE WHAT, WHERE, AND WHEN***


Maureen and I will both fly into MCO from DC and CA, respectively, and will spend the next 3 nights at SoG. Then we'll stop in TX on our way home to visit my bro and his family. Here's our itinerary so far:



***THE WHY***


Maureen found out that she is going to a teacher conference in Washington DC at the beginning of July. Us silly Californians, well we're so far away from practically everyone, that whenever we travel ANYWHERE we always say "well, if I'm going all the way to X then I might as well go to Y, too." In fact, that's how we wound up visiting WDW for the very first time back in December 2010. My brother, JG, and his family did the unthinkable and moved away to Texas, so we decided to go visit them over Christmas. Suddenly Maureen declared: "Well, if we're going all the way to Texas then we might as well just go to WDW, too." I was like yeah right, since I had been desperately campaigning to see WDW for pretty much my entire life. Maureen was somehow stirred to action by my disbelief, and she stopped what she was doing and literally at that very second, picked up the phone and called Shades of Green (SoG). After she made our reservation she hung up and we just sat there, blinking at each other. "I can't believe you just did that," I blubbered. Memories!

In fact, here are two pics of Heather and I from when we saw the castle for the VERY first time EVER!!! I just realized that these pics do a hilariously great job at distinguishing between our personalities!



We traveled to WDW for the week before Christmas in both 2010 and 2011 but haven't been able to get back over there since (I stayed at the WL for one night last May but that's a whole other can of worms actually). Anyway, we've been very sad that we couldn't go for Christmas 2012. One day, Maureen was carrying laundry upstairs and suddenly stopped and declared: "I need to see the new Beauty and the Beast castle at WDW." Then, a few weeks later, Dad was watching a golf tournament on tv that was being held at SoG. We could hear the monorail's whistle in the background and it made Maureen and I SO very sad! Sometimes Maureen claimed that she could smell the Polynesian. But alas, we could not go!

Anyway, Maureen pulled another fast one on me last week. I had known that she was going to the teacher conference and she was thinking about stopping in Texas to visit my bro on her way back home. But then suddenly she said to me on the phone one evening: "Why don't you meet me in Orlando and then we can go to WDW for a few days, then visit JG on our way back?" After about a 15 min discussion, I had already drawn up a list of possible flights, drafted a sample WDW itinerary, and assessed ADR availability (I'm like a firecracker when it comes to booking flights and putting together itineraries- I LOVE any excuse to get on a plane and go somewhere, anywhere). I was worried that all the flights would be horribly expensive, since we'd be flying right around July 4th, but I somehow found some great deals, plus I found two flights from DC and CA that arrived in MCO within 20 min of each other. Sold!

***QUICK LINKS***
3/8/2013: Thunder Cake and Wild Africa Trek! (pg 1)
4/24/2013: Disneyland July 2012 (pg 1)
6/3/2013: Disneyland March 2013 - PART 1/3 (pg 1)
6/3/2013: Disneyland March 2013 - PART 2/3 (pg 2)
6/3/2013: Disneyland March 2013 - PART 3/3 (pg 2)
6/5/2013: Planning Conundrums Regarding Breakfast (pg 2)
6/13/2013: Final Draft of the Itinerary & MK Christmas Parade Pics! (pg 2)
6/13/2013: MK Christmas Parade Pics - PART 2/3 (pg 2)
6/13/2013: MK Christmas Parade Pics - PART 3/3 (pg 2)
6/21/2013: A Schnauzer in Disneyland - PART 1/2 (pg 3)
6/21/2013: A Schnauzer in Disneyland - PART 2/2 (pg 3)
7/2/2013: When is the fun gonna start?? (pg 3)

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SoG, November 2011 / SoG, December 2011 / WL, May 2012 / SoG, July 4th 2013 (PTR: This Land is MY Land!)/
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Old 03-03-2013, 09:32 AM   #2
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You probably already know I'm excited about this, as I mentioned yesterday, but I'll say it again, I am excited for you!

Your touring dynamic with your mom reminds me of me and my mom. Both the commando touring style and kicking dad out of the trips. Speaking of, I do love the collection of you dad sleeping in various places. That's hilarious! But how could you sleep at Beaches n Cream?!

And Loki looks as handsome as ever. Such a beautiful dog!

I totally approve of all of your ADRs. I did the exact same ones on my last trip, with the exception of eating lunch at Be Our Guest and SoG, but replace SoG with CSR, and yeah, our ADRs were almost exactly the same! I tried so hard to find a reservation at BoG, but it never worked. Actually, I did have one but the timing ended up not working out so I had to cancel it. I'll do it next time!!

Can't wait to hear more!
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:26 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eight View Post


You probably already know I'm excited about this, as I mentioned yesterday, but I'll say it again, I am excited for you!

Your touring dynamic with your mom reminds me of me and my mom. Both the commando touring style and kicking dad out of the trips. Speaking of, I do love the collection of you dad sleeping in various places. That's hilarious! But how could you sleep at Beaches n Cream?!

And Loki looks as handsome as ever. Such a beautiful dog!

I totally approve of all of your ADRs. I did the exact same ones on my last trip, with the exception of eating lunch at Be Our Guest and SoG, but replace SoG with CSR, and yeah, our ADRs were almost exactly the same! I tried so hard to find a reservation at BoG, but it never worked. Actually, I did have one but the timing ended up not working out so I had to cancel it. I'll do it next time!!

Can't wait to hear more!
Haha, thanks! Yes, my dad actually had a temper tantrum on our way to B&C b/c getting there from SoG using Disney transportation is sort of a pain. It would make sense to go there while you're at Epcot, but I think the chocolate moose from Le Cellier beats out the No Way Jose every time.

I tried to look for dinner ADRs at BoG but they're all gone for July 4-5 at this point. I haven't researched it on the DIS thoroughly yet, but my friend who went to WDW in Dec said that people were lining up at 10am so they could get in for lunch! My mom and I are determined though to get lunch there so we'll see how it goes!
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SoG, November 2011 / SoG, December 2011 / WL, May 2012 / SoG, July 4th 2013 (PTR: This Land is MY Land!)/
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Old 03-08-2013, 04:10 PM   #4
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March 8, 2013: Thunder Cake and Wild Africa Trek!!!!


Hello everyone! Firstly, I have to share that I am still recovering from a basically terrifying incident that occurred last night. The night before I had pulled an all-nighter. Grad school encourages horrible habits, so after several years of this nonsense I've wound up a vampire i.e. I've been going to sleep at 6am and waking up at 2pm. It was fun for awhile but now it's downright inconvenient and I've been feeling like a Norwegian in the winter and I probably have a vitamin D deficiency. Anyway, I've been trying to wake up an hour earlier every few days but it hasn't worked. I even tried fasting for 12 hrs, which NASA does to acclimate astronauts to low earth orbit (in LEO the sun rises and sets every 90 minutes!), but that didn't work either! Enough was enough so I just went to sleep at 5am and got up at 6am. I cleaned, did laundry, got groceries, and walked the dogs at the shelter since I of course wasn't functioning well enough to actually do anything that required thinking. I started dimming the lights at 9pm and was asleep by 11pm (that's INCREDIBLE for me). I was so excited and planned on waking up this morning at 6 or 7am again. But then...I SHOT out of bed at 1:10am to the sound of a HUGE explosion!! I realized after about 2 sec that it was a random clap of thunder but wow was that the loudest most thundery thing I've ever heard! It pretty much thunders about once a year around here so I certainly wasn't expecting it. I was so mad b/c I went to all that effort to get to sleep early and then, an explosion? Really? I was so freaked out and my heart was pounding so it took awhile to get back to sleep. I woke up at 11am. So at least I managed to move up a few hrs. Which reminds me, has anyone ever read Thunder Cake, by Patricia Polacco?? One of my favorite stories ever!



Besides thunder cake, I have some exciting news! I called Disney to schedule Maureen and myself for the Wild Africa Trek!!!! We're going on 7/4 at 9:30am. I was happy w/ the 9:30 time b/c any later and it would've been so hot that it would've been more like the "Australian Outback Trek" on Christmas, and any earlier and I would've been traversing the crocodile bridge thinking "I'm tired. I'm so tired. Look at the pretty crocodiles. I'm tired." I had to make sure that Disney wasn't going to charge the $250 per person on 7/4, but it was the $189, so I booked our trek! The guy on the phone said that he went on the trek recently and he LOVED it but it was HOT HOT HOT. He also said that the trek guides made everyone take off their name tags before crossing the crocodile bridge, b/c they didn't want other guests on the KS to catch ominous glimpses of the tags floating in the crocodile enclosure haha.

I've been wanting to do the WAT for years now, and I remember having a discussion w/ Maureen about it and she was super enthusiastic, but it was super expensive so we decided to do the Wishes Cruise instead at that time. Since it'll only be Maureen and me this time, it's not a small fortune w/ just 2 people. I made the final decision to book the WAT after watching these YouTube videos:

(Disney's WILD AFRICA TREK The Complete Experience)

(Interview with Walt Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde, by DisneyParks)

(Behind-The-Scenes: Wild Africa Trek, by DisneyParks)

This DIS Unplugged podcast featuring the WAT was also really awesome:
(Disney World Backstage Tours, Disney Tours)

I'm SO excited!!!! I'm not planning on telling Maureen until we arrive at the AK on 7/4! I told her the other night on the phone that I had scheduled a "special event" on 7/4 but it was almost 9pm and if I don't call her before 8pm on weekdays then I'm basically just talking to myself (Maureen has to get up at 5am). Consequently, Maureen wasn't at all suspicious of anything and I think she probably doesn't even remember having that conversation anyway haha. After I told her about the special event I cackled w/ anticipation while thinking about the crocodile bridge. She said "Uh-oh I hope we're not riding EE again." When my family rode EE for the first time in Dec 2010, we had no idea it was so crazy! I felt a little bad b/c Maureen gets terrified on rides like that (she's more of a BTMR kind of gal) and would've refused to participate had she known about the backwards part.

Here's Maureen and my Dad freaking out on EE:



Here's my family in total shock after we staggered off EE (I think this pic is so funny):



Meanwhile I was just delighted:



The last time I surprised my family w/ a "special event" was on the 2010 trip when I booked a surprise Holiday sleigh ride through Fort Wilderness (I highly recommend this if you're going during the holidays- you roll past all of the RVs where some people set up really awesome Christmas light displays in their "front yards"!). Book the sleigh ride as early as possible; my parents requested another sleigh ride for our December 2011 trip but I waited too long and couldn't get a reservation (and I called multiple times, even while we were at WDW). Our horse's name was Phil:

The sleigh:


Phil:


Us w/ Phil and Phil's handler, Stephanie:


NEXT TIME: Some photos from DL w/ Maureen, Heather, me, and my brother's family. Also, maybe changing my Kona breakfast ADR to earlier in the morning so we can make it to MK rope drop on time!
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SoG, November 2011 / SoG, December 2011 / WL, May 2012 / SoG, July 4th 2013 (PTR: This Land is MY Land!)/
-In Progress- "I Don't Cruise… I Jingle Cruise." --A New Year's PTR--

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Old 03-10-2013, 07:56 PM   #5
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Haha, I love that you and Maureen voted the others off the island for this trip. That's what me, my mom, and my aunt like to do. The men (my dad, my brothers, and my uncle)...they're like your dad. They tend to be a little impatient. And they've been known to pout and be annoying. Haha. So we ditch them quite a bit for girls only trips.

I'm so excited to hear about your Wild Africa trek! I've never known anyone who's done it! I bet it'll be a blast!

And omg, I LOVE Thunder Cake! I took a Children's Literature class in college, and we did a class on it. Such a great book!

Can't wait to hear more!
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Old 03-12-2013, 01:03 PM   #6
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Oooh, the Wild Africa Trek, that sounds awesome! And I love that you are surprising your mom, that'll be fun! I've never done it, but it sounds pretty great, from what I've heard. I really hope you do a TR, because I would definitely want to hear about it.

And I like the idea of the sleigh ride. I think if I were to go back during the holidays, I would like to do that.

Looking forward to the next update, I want to see some Disneyland pictures!

P.S. Finished my Tinker Bell Half trip report and posted the start of Princess Half one. Admittedly, it's not super exciting yet, but it'll get there.
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Enchanted View Post
Haha, I love that you and Maureen voted the others off the island for this trip. That's what me, my mom, and my aunt like to do. The men (my dad, my brothers, and my uncle)...they're like your dad. They tend to be a little impatient. And they've been known to pout and be annoying. Haha. So we ditch them quite a bit for girls only trips.

I'm so excited to hear about your Wild Africa trek! I've never known anyone who's done it! I bet it'll be a blast!

And omg, I LOVE Thunder Cake! I took a Children's Literature class in college, and we did a class on it. Such a great book!

Can't wait to hear more!
Hi Emily! Thanks so much for visiting! I just realized that you are currently right smack in the middle of your April trip! I hope you're having a blast! I find it hilarious that the men in your life also have tantrums! I think that women generally have more endurance haha.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eight View Post
Oooh, the Wild Africa Trek, that sounds awesome! And I love that you are surprising your mom, that'll be fun! I've never done it, but it sounds pretty great, from what I've heard. I really hope you do a TR, because I would definitely want to hear about it.

And I like the idea of the sleigh ride. I think if I were to go back during the holidays, I would like to do that.

Looking forward to the next update, I want to see some Disneyland pictures!

P.S. Finished my Tinker Bell Half trip report and posted the start of Princess Half one. Admittedly, it's not super exciting yet, but it'll get there.
I am SUPER excited for the Wild Africa Trek! I was just watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom on tv the other night and I got the warm fuzzies when it came time for the rope bridge crocodile scene. Reading your 1/2 marathon TRs I find so inspirational- puts me in the perfect mood to go work out! I've been lifting weights twice a week since Nov and still can't do a 100% push up. I think my arms are too long!
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:56 AM   #8
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April 24, 2013: Disneyland July 2012



Hello again, friends! I've been meaning to post a new DIS update but& school is taking over my life. As my grandmother used to say: "This too shall pass." I have to get as much work finished as possible before July 4th so I don't feel guilty while hiding in WDW! I also visited DL last month right before my AP expired (probably won't be able to renew this year), so I'm planning on posting a few pics soon.

In the meantime, here are some pics from July 2012 when my bro and his family (my sister-in-law Sarah, niece Lily (now 4), and niece Baby Avery (now 1)) visited us from TX. I have separated the pics into multiple "series."

The Before & After Series:

BEFORE: Here's Lily waiting to board the Mickey & Friends tram to DL. At this point, she's never been to DL and has no idea what to expect! Lily's wearing a special tutu that I had bought for her at the DTD World of Disney a few weeks prior- I also bought her a stuffed Minnie Mouse who was wearing a matching tutu! I saved them so I could give them to her when they all arrived from TX. By the time I drove down to my parents' house from Los Angeles, they had already been there for a few hours. JG & Sarah told Lily that I had a special surprise for her but that she couldn't open it until I arrived. When I finally walked through the front door, I hadn't seen them for over 6 months, and within 20 seconds Lily said: "Lauren- do you have my surprise??":



AFTER: As we approached Main Street, we told Lily that there was a huge pink castle in which Sleeping Beauty lived. She was SO excited as we turned the corner and the castle came into view! We took her to the little princess boutique inside the castle and she picked out the Cinderella costume (she initially went for the Aurora dress b/c it's pink, but she absolutely HAD to have the Cinderella glass slippers (not in this pic b/c the castle didn't have her size and I had to hot foot it over to the Fantasy Fair area where they had more shoes for sale), so she wound up w/ the entire Cinderella ensemble.


We all got a great spot to watch the parade near IASW, and it was hilarious b/c Baby Avery woke up and was literally kicking her legs to the beat of the music. Lily was completely mesmerized. When the princess float passed us, Cinderella noticed Lily decked out in her Cinderella costume and she placed her hands over her heart and blew Lily a kiss and waved! Lily gasped and her face just lit up like a Christmas tree- it was ADORABLE and it absolutely melted all of our hearts.

The Classic Series:

These photo-ops are pretty much no brainers for any day at DL, but boy did I have to fight to get these! I had to get them as early in the day as I could b/c otherwise everyone would've been too tired and cranky to bother. I was bummed that the strollers made an appearance in our castle photo, but it was pretty hot and by that point all Lily wanted to do was sit in her chariot w/ the visor down blowing her handheld pink personal fan that I gave her (well, she sort of stole it haha, but thank goodness for that fan! For anyone taking a small child to Disney, a fan alone will prevent numerous meltdowns in hot weather).

Sleeping Beauty Castle:


Monstro at the Storybook Canal:


The train station:


The Twin Series:

For some reason I wound up w/ a bunch of photos in which various pairs of people looked scarily similar...

JG & Baby Avery (waiting for the Mickey & Friends tram in the morning):


I was actually really impressed w/ how long JG lasted at DL. He had a meltdown at Pinocchio's Village Haus b/c suddenly he needed lunch within 30 seconds or else (a low blood-sugar crisis- it happens to everyone!), but he actually lasted until we had dinner right before the fireworks. After dinner, Lily accidentally cracked him over the head w/ one of those MM lollipops on the long stick. Like, I heard the crack. Everyone heard the crack. I of course roared w/ laughter for about a half hour afterwards but JG wasn't particularly enthused. That's when we knew it was time to leave. Sarah wanted to stay but JG was on the edge. You'd think that after 8 yrs of marriage she'd be able to read the signs? My Mom, Heather, and I are for obvious reasons extremely skilled at reading the signs haha.

Sarah & Lily (on the Storybook Canal; I love this little ride!):


JG & Lily (on the teacups):


Lily & Me (well this isn't at DL but it really needs to be included in the twin series. Wow, do I ever look like a big beluga):


NEXT TIME: Updated July 4th plans and our must-do's! Plus, a new park bag!
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:47 AM   #9
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Joining in! Your stories are hilarious...can't wait to read more. I'm so jealous about the trek! One of these days!
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:43 AM   #10
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Aw, your nieces are adorable! I am amused by the picture of JG and Avery, they look so serious. Didn't anyone tell them they were at the Happiest Place on Earth? And the picture of Lily in her Cinderella ensemble is so sweet. Little kids in costumes at the parks make me smile, because a) it's adorable, and b) I feel like it takes this weird super human dedication to wear one of those costumes all day in the heat. I wore a kid's Cinderella dress to a costume party once, they are not comfortable!

And that story about Cinderella waving at Lily. This is why I want to go with kids someday, because they appreciate things in a totally different way that is so fun to watch.

And I really like your Tinker Bell tank.

And I am looking forward to your next update because I want to hear about your new park bag. That's how you know you are a Disney person, you're always looking for the perfect park bag.
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:52 AM   #11
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I am SUPER excited for the Wild Africa Trek! I was just watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom on tv the other night and I got the warm fuzzies when it came time for the rope bridge crocodile scene. Reading your 1/2 marathon TRs I find so inspirational- puts me in the perfect mood to go work out! I've been lifting weights twice a week since Nov and still can't do a 100% push up. I think my arms are too long!
I used to love that movie when I was kid, though I haven't seen it in years (although looking back, wasn't it a bit violent for kids?)! I keep thinking I should watch it.

And I am glad you find them inspirational! That makes me feel inspired to keep working hard. Although I'm not sure I could do a push up either. Maybe like one. And then my arms would give out. I plan to start doing more cross training in then next few months though.

Also, since your AP expired, can we still meet up at Downtown Disney when I come in August? I know that's like several months from now, but you know me, I am a planner.

Sorry for the weird two post response. I wrote one, and then decided I had more to say.
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Old 04-26-2013, 01:05 AM   #12
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I LOVE the book Thunder Cake! My 4th grade teacher used to read it to us whenever there was a thunderstorm. So good! Lily looks so cute in her Cinderella dress. The full dress with crown and wand looks particularly adorable with the tiny running shoes haha. How magical to get to dress up right in Disneyland! Also love how perplexed the baby looks in all of the pictures haha. Clearly you'll need to bring her back immediately now that she's 1!

That pic with your mom in front of the castle is also amazing with those pink flowering trees! I hope that's still available next week?! I assume they're already bloomed, sadly, but it's just so pretty! Your dad's napping abilities are pretty impressive. Great collage haha. Also, I don't think I've ever seen that evil bird before! He does look kind of creepy!

Can't wait to read more!
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:41 AM   #13
KathyRN137
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Hi Lauren!

I'm hopping on board because we're going to be at WDW for July 4th too!! (I still can't believe we're tackling WDW over a major holiday!)

I laughed when you were describing your Dad -- my hubby is often "Grumpy" on our Disney trips and your Dad reminds me of him (minus the golf!)

I love Mother-Daughter trip reports! Looking forward to more....


Kathy
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Old 06-03-2013, 05:41 AM   #14
magichusky
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benji2012 View Post
Joining in! Your stories are hilarious...can't wait to read more. I'm so jealous about the trek! One of these days!
Hi Ellen- thanks so much for visiting! I keep forgetting that I actually signed us up for the trek! It always seemed so "not gonna happen" b/c of the price, but then I thought well, how many times am I going to walk over a dilapidated crocodile bridge? Might as well do it now!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eight View Post
Aw, your nieces are adorable! I am amused by the picture of JG and Avery, they look so serious. Didn't anyone tell them they were at the Happiest Place on Earth? And the picture of Lily in her Cinderella ensemble is so sweet. Little kids in costumes at the parks make me smile, because a) it's adorable, and b) I feel like it takes this weird super human dedication to wear one of those costumes all day in the heat. I wore a kid's Cinderella dress to a costume party once, they are not comfortable!
Haha yes! I was honestly so impressed w/ how long JG lasted at DL. But I totally agree about the itchy costume thing- as a child I refused to wear anything except spandex and t-shirts. I would've most certainly refused to wear a costume to DL. Lily just absolutely refused to take her costume off all day- her plastic glass slippers were even fogging up b/c it was so hot and we were like how is that comfortable? Apparently she even wore them at their hotel the next morning when she went w/ JG to get breakfast for everyone!

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Originally Posted by Eight View Post
And that story about Cinderella waving at Lily. This is why I want to go with kids someday, because they appreciate things in a totally different way that is so fun to watch.
It was SO SWEET! Yeah, my sister and I had a mini-meltdown around 2pm b/c we had been in Fantasy Land for way too long, but we got over it.

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Originally Posted by Eight View Post
And I really like your Tinker Bell tank.
Thanks! It was like $35 or something ridiculous in DTD, but I HAD to have it. I never see attractive Disney tank tops for sale, which is annoying b/c I don't really like wearing t-shirts.

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Originally Posted by Eight View Post
I used to love that movie when I was kid, though I haven't seen it in years (although looking back, wasn't it a bit violent for kids?)! I keep thinking I should watch it.
Omg, IJ & the Temple of Doom is such a classic! I don't find the IJ movies to be violent at all b/c they're more like light hearted adventure films, not super serious, dramatic sagas.

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Originally Posted by Eight View Post
And I am glad you find them inspirational! That makes me feel inspired to keep working hard. Although I'm not sure I could do a push up either. Maybe like one. And then my arms would give out. I plan to start doing more cross training in then next few months though.
You should start weight lifting!! Once I started doing lower body strength conditioning (like leg presses and calf raises and stuff) I found that I became an even stronger runner w/out running more frequently, which is awesome.

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Originally Posted by Eight View Post
Also, since your AP expired, can we still meet up at Downtown Disney when I come in August? I know that's like several months from now, but you know me, I am a planner.
Haha you know it! Now that my AP has been renewed we can hang out in the parks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by VBsHustla View Post
I LOVE the book Thunder Cake! My 4th grade teacher used to read it to us whenever there was a thunderstorm. So good! Lily looks so cute in her Cinderella dress. The full dress with crown and wand looks particularly adorable with the tiny running shoes haha. How magical to get to dress up right in Disneyland! Also love how perplexed the baby looks in all of the pictures haha. Clearly you'll need to bring her back immediately now that she's 1!
Lily was SO excited! She still hasn't watched all of the classic Disney films yet, so I'll have to bring some w/ me when we visit them in July! I hate it that Disney keeps putting everything back in the vault, b/c then I can't buy them for Lily. And yes, little Avery was very observant. I feel like I don't even know the poor child b/c I've only seen her twice. At least Lily lived here as a baby so she always remembers who we are and stuff. When we see Avery in July she'll probably be like who the heck are you??

Quote:
Originally Posted by VBsHustla View Post
That pic with your mom in front of the castle is also amazing with those pink flowering trees! I hope that's still available next week?! I assume they're already bloomed, sadly, but it's just so pretty! Your dad's napping abilities are pretty impressive. Great collage haha. Also, I don't think I've ever seen that evil bird before! He does look kind of creepy!

Can't wait to read more!
I have no idea how it's possible to fall asleep on the Kilimanjaro Safari. The last time we were on it that April we were bouncing around so much that stuff was coming out of my bag!

Sushi is such a jerk! I do not approve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KathyRN137 View Post
Hi Lauren!

I'm hopping on board because we're going to be at WDW for July 4th too!! (I still can't believe we're tackling WDW over a major holiday!)

I laughed when you were describing your Dad -- my hubby is often "Grumpy" on our Disney trips and your Dad reminds me of him (minus the golf!)

I love Mother-Daughter trip reports! Looking forward to more....


Kathy
Thanks for visiting, Kathy! How absolutely exciting about July 4th- I'm going over to your TR now! Yes, I'm definitely worried about the crowds, especially since my mom and I are going to try and get to the MK for the July 3rd fireworks. My dad was complaining about being left out so we had to arrange for him to meet us in TX for the last leg of our trip, but my mom put her foot down and banished him from WDW!
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SoG, November 2011 / SoG, December 2011 / WL, May 2012 / SoG, July 4th 2013 (PTR: This Land is MY Land!)/
-In Progress- "I Don't Cruise… I Jingle Cruise." --A New Year's PTR--
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Old 06-03-2013, 05:53 AM   #15
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Disneyland March 2013 - PART 1/3

June 3, 2013: Disneyland March 2013 - PART 1/3



Greetings everyone! I just don't understand how time flies these days without a DIS update! Even though I should probably draw up a finalized itinerary for our July excursion and post it, I've got a bunch of DL photos that should of course be shared immediately. I visited DL twice recently: once in mid-March and once at the beginning of May. I went by myself in March to get one last adventure in before my AP expired. I wasn't planning on renewing, but I discovered that Disney has a great monthly payment plan for APs w/ 0% interest! Additionally, my excellent friend Laura (VBsHustla here on the DIS) decided to come visit! We were only planning on doing 1 day at DL, but upon further discussion and logical reasoning decided that 2 days would be more appropriate (haha). Another friend also decided that she needed to do DL on a later date. That meant at least 3 days at DL in the foreseeable future. With ticket prices soaring at $117 per 1-day park hopper (w/ a student discount), all one needs to do is visit three times in order to save $$ w/ the cheaper southern CA resident APs. I really do wish they would make the AP card more attractive however. Gosh darn it, I miss my golden Premium Passport.

Anyway, let's travel back in time to Friday, March 15th, when I stopped by DL on my way down to my parents' house (it's so convenient that DL is located between school and my parents' house!). I parked in DTD b/c you can park there for free for 3 hrs. The only other option is parking in the Mickey & Friends parking structure for a flat fee of $15. I wasn't expecting to encounter any crowds, but I found this when I arrived at CA Adv:



I think at that point I had only been inside CA Adv around 2 or 3 times since it had been remodeled, so things were still new. I came across this "Trolley Treats" window display and immediately zeroed in on these marshmallow chocolate swirl "ice cream" cones:



I was on the verge of getting one, but then decided that I'd prefer an actual ice cream cone. In an adjacent window display was the "candy Matterhorn":



I stopped and stared at this thing for quite awhile; it's very detailed! It reminded me of "ice cream mountain" from that miniature golf Rugrats episode (thank goodness the Rugrats DVD box sets were recently released on Amazon!!). There was a little trolley that zoomed around the mountain through chocolate tunnels and lollipop forests. The base of the mountain had a candy corn-field, ice cream sandwich boulders, and gingerbread houses:









I love window display photos b/c then you can see random peoples' reflections in the glass along w/ your own! Here's a view of the candy Matterhorn from the inside of the shop:



I decided that I'd walk through the Carthay Circle area and head towards the Tower, b/c I was in the mood to accelerate at 9.8 m/s^2:





This CS place reminds me of Starring Rolls!!! Oh how I miss my Starring Rolls!!!!



I went inside "Off the Page" in Hollywood Land and admired these items:







When I went to DL again in May, I actually wound up purchasing the "All Aboard" shirt in Elias & Co.! I had forgotten that I had seen it and even photographed it during this visit. The shirt is actually super soft and towards the bottom is Pluto speeding off in a trolley w/ Mickey running after him on the back of the shirt yelling "Wait for meee!". So cute!

At some point I got carried away and started contemplating purchasing all sorts of things and became concerned b/c it's not like I'm rolling in dough at the moment. My old friend Helen's voice reverberated in my ears: "Walk away." Whenever I need to thwart a major spending spree, I always hear Helen counseling "Walk away. Walk away." I wonder where Helen is now! Before I continue, I simply must recount one of my favorite Helen stories. Laura and I were just cracking up about it in May while in the Peter Pan queue:

************beginning of tangent

On President's Day weekend in 2007, Laura, Helen, Angie, Kendra, Suzanne, and I somehow managed to simultaneously clear our schedules in order to do a DL day (Helen and Suzanne truly had the nuttiest schedules ever). We arrived around 10:30am. Here's Helen dancing in the Timon & Pumbaa parking lot:



Eventually it was 11:45pm (the park closed at 12am). Somehow, Helen was able to take a photo of all 6 of us in front of the castle (pardon my strangely shiny teeth- I had Invisalign at the time):



Laura and I were appalled b/c the others absolutely insisted on riding Star Tours, which we don't really like b/c simulated rides make us feel a bit strange, plus we hadn't been on Peter Pan yet! While waiting in the short ST queue, the others were quickly becoming comatose due to the late hour. Laura and I, on the other hand, spontaneously became extraordinarily hyper and plotted and schemed that once we got off of ST we were going to SPRINT to Peter Pan so we could jump in line right at 11:59pm. It was going to be close but we were convinced we could do it. We of course never considered that our friends would be too tired (or unwilling haha) to make a mad dash to Peter Pan at midnight.

Once ST was over, Laura and I started screaming to everyone about Peter Pan and OMG it was 11:57pm!!!!! We BUSTED out of the space ship and absolutely exploded down the corridor, down the ramp, and through the gift shop. As we were sprinting away, I looked back and saw Helen grimly shuffling down the ramp, her backpack bouncing almost angrily and her lips pursed. The look on her face said it all: "I'm tired, I've been at DL for almost 14 hrs, it's midnight, and I am NOT in the mood to run ANYWHERE."

At that point, at least for Laura and me, it was every man for himself. Upon exiting the ST gift shop, I started running and didn't look back until I was almost across the castle drawbridge. I looked over my shoulder and saw Laura just approaching the drawbridge and could barely see poor Kendra who was yelling after us, her hair flying everywhere, enshrouded in darkness and still running through the hub. I couldn't even see the others (haha).

Laura and I arrived at the PP queue at exactly 12:00am (yup we're that good: 2.5 minutes from being seated on ST to the PP queue). But, the CM had JUST taken up her post to cut off the queue and absolutely did NOT care that we had gone to all the trouble of running from ST to make it to our very most favoritest ride in the entire land (yes, we told her we did it in 2.5 min- she wasn't impressed).

Once we realized that our well-laid plan had been foiled, poor Kendra finally arrived w/ a twisted ankle. We discussed what had happened and Laura and I furiously declared that if we hadn't been compromised by the ST simulation effects on our psyches then we would've made it. Helen, Suzanne, and Angie were still absolutely nowhere in sight. We realized that each one of us had noticed Helen angrily shuffling down the ST ramp and then yes, we all laughed. Kendra was able to meet Laura and I at DL in May and when we arrived at the Peter Pan queue at 11:45pm, 6 yrs later, we laughed even harder.

Another funny photo I found- Instead of partying in college, Laura, Helen, and I watched baseball and had rally monkey fights (well, to be precise: a San Diego Padres rally lemur, a NY Yankees rally bear, and a LA Dodger rally chimpanzee):



************end of tangent

Anyway, continuing on, I heeded Helen's advice and walked away. I took a quick pic of my favorite 101 Dalmation window display. I wish I could get one of those crowns for my dog, Loki, but his head is probably larger than all 3 of those dog mannequins combined:




PART 2 CONTINUED IN THE NEXT POST
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SoG, December 2010 ('Jungle All the Way!' A Very Christmasy TR / PTR) / SoG, April 2011 / SoG, September 2011 /
SoG, November 2011 / SoG, December 2011 / WL, May 2012 / SoG, July 4th 2013 (PTR: This Land is MY Land!)/
-In Progress- "I Don't Cruise… I Jingle Cruise." --A New Year's PTR--

Last edited by magichusky; 06-03-2013 at 06:59 PM.
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