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Old 04-19-2013, 08:56 PM   #1
Happy Duck
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It’s EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD! *NEW VIDEO- EPCOT DAY* 1/22

It’s EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!




Welcome, Welcome, Welcome to my first ever trip report! You might remember me from my PTR located here and if not, it is lovely to meet you! I am beyond ecstatic to be writing this report and I hope that you enjoy the journey!

(We use the word “exhilarating” a lot. This video – towards the end – is the reason why.)

Let us begin by introducing the cast (it’s a small one!) ----



Hello! My name is Lauren and I’ll be your trip director for the next few months. I am 22 (almost 23!) and in “real life” I am a Pre-K through 8th grade music teacher. Even though my real life is amazing, I always try and keep a hint of Disney magic around!

My previous trips were in May 2002 (AKL), April 2007 (Band/Chorus Trip), and January 2012 (POFQ). This was my fourth trip to Disney World and it certainly will not be the last!

Next up, my Disney Favorites!!!

Park: Magic Kingdom
Rides: Tower of Terror, Expedition Everest, Gran-Fiesta Tour!, Under the Sea, and Toy Story Mania
Character: Donald Duck
Princess: Pocahontas
Movies: Pocahontas, Toy Story, Beauty and the Beast, and Tangled
Restaurants: Yak and Yeti, Tusker House, and Cinderella’s Royal Table


This trip was very special and filled with pixie dust! It was extra special because I shared it with my “little” sister!



Introducing Sarah! She is 13 and loves all things Winnie the Pooh. Sarah is much more relaxed about park touring than I am (we even took time to go swimming during the day!) which helped us enjoy the small details just a bit more.



This was Sarah's 3rd trip to Disney. The first was in 2002, when she was only 2 1/2. The second was during our trip in January 2012!

Sarah’s favorites:

Park: Magic Kingdom
Rides: Big Thunder Mountain
Character: Winnie the Pooh Steamboat Willie
Princess: Merida and Rapunzel
Movies: Tangled and Brave
Restaurants: Crystal Palace and Yak and Yeti

Our trip took place April 11-15th, 2013 and we stayed in a Royal Room- River View at Port Orleans Riverside! Get ready for Princesses, woodland creatures, and lots of fun!

Chapters
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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-19-2013, 08:57 PM   #2
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*Video Links*
Day One
Day Two- Magic Kingdom, Part 1
Day Two- Part Two
Day Three- Epcot--- NEW 1/22

(Short) Pre-Trip

Packing!
Waiting and Crafting!


April 11

Last day of work!
Flight!
Flight (Part 2) and Magical Express!
Check-In! ***pics really start coming with this post
Downtown Disney!
Downtown Disney (Part 2)


April 12

Making our way down Main Street... to Crystal Palace!!!
Meeting a few furry friends!
Guppy Choir!
Elephants and Circus Tents!
Hunney, Horses, and Mickey Bars!
Double Mountain Vision
One word. Yummy!
It's a Sarah-Fish!
We have now reached "Exhilarating" status
Space, Woods, and Donald!
Wishes and Celebrate the Magic (with a side of Dole Whip)
The Most Pixie Dusted Magical Parade EVER
MK: The Late Edition


April 13


Akershus: Food Edition

Akershus: The Princess Edition!
Mickey proposes and Minnie is NOT happy!
Does this tank make me look fat?
Pluto wears moccasins?
HOW RUDE!!!
SCHOOL BREAD
The "Donald" Update
Festique con Beverly
Illuminations: Table Side!

April 14

Toy Story Mania
Woody wants to put me in JAIL!
I'm a musician, not an artist!
Cupcakes, Movies, and MORE Toys!
My Happy Birthday lunch forgot the "happy"
BOOKING A BOUNCEBACK!
Real Life Update
Hollywood, HERE WE COME!
The Terror of the Tower
FANTASMIC is FANTASTIC
August Pin Trading Update
It's Enchanting. And Exhilarating!
Under the sea, in the woods, and out in space!
Recap of EMH!

April 15

POCAHONTAS
Yak and Yeti
Festival of the Lion King
Tour of POR
Tour of POR- Part 2
Going Home


Trip Wrap Up
The Third to Last Post
The Second to Last Post
the FOOD update
even MORE food pictures
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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-19-2013, 09:07 PM   #3
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Packing!
April 9


It was Tuesday night, only two days before our trip! It was time for the “hunter-gatherer” part of packing (aka: put everything on the dining room table and sort!)

It wasn’t too hard to find everything. Packing for trips is so much easier now that I’m a teacher. I wear “professional clothes” a lot of the time, so my play clothes are already clean!

We listened to the “Four Parks: One World” CDs while we packed. Thus began our obsession with “It’s a big blue world!” Yay Disney music!

There was actually one sad thing that happened while packing. I realized that my fancy self-painted Disney shoes would only match one of my outfits I don’t like wearing jean shorts and the shoes didn’t go at all with my black ones. Disney outfit problems. They go with my Magic Kingdom dress though! That was fun!

While we were packing, Mama had a surprise for Sarah! She bought her a Mickey bag (complete with a mini Mickey and Minnie!) to use as one of her bags. She also got Sarah her own trip journal/mini scrapbook! Mama had decorated each page to represent different places on our trip. Sarah used it to collect autographs and she is going to insert her own pictures! Such a fun keepsake!

It was actually pretty easy to fit everything into our suitcases. We had planned on only using carry-on to avoid the fees so I was glad. Plus, I’m usually bad at packing, so the more wiggle room I have, the better!

We packed from about 7-9:15. We found everything; except for a zune charging cord (which I found on Wednesday.) I also almost forgot to pack the most important item clothing I would ever take to Disney: my specially made Pocahontas t-shirt!!! It was close, but don’t worry. It was safe in my suitcase, ready to go!

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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-19-2013, 10:03 PM   #4
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This sounds fun - I love sister trips! I think it's because I miss my own sister and our trips to WDW together so much. Can't wait to see where this takes you!
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Old 04-19-2013, 10:24 PM   #5
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Waiting and Crafting!
April 10

One day more! Disney was calling but I still had 2 days of work to get through!

Wednesday was a busy day. Upper school has specials by quarters and this was my last day with 7th grade. As much as it was great having them 4 days a week, I’m sad that I won’t have them in class until they are in 8th grade.

I spent the last day singing musical theater songs with them. We sang “Look Down”, “Empty Chairs and Empty Tables”, and “Popular”. The day before we did popular songs: “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “93 Million Miles”, “Grenade”, and a rendition of “Pure Imagination” that I had lying around. Not a bad way to end the quarter!

After that was study hall with 6th grade. They had no homework, which is the kiss of death for study hall coverage, and while they were nicely drawing on the board, they managed to coat themselves with chalk. Yay.

After that I had 3 periods of prep, in which I made a lot of progress on preparations for the upcoming 2nd grade and Kindergarten plays. Then I finalized my sub plans for when I was off gallivanting around Magic Kingdom.

After that, I finished off the day teaching 1st grade and 2 kindergarten classes.

I nearly skipped out at the end of the day and was home by 4:00pm. About 5:00 I started working on a very important project! My trip journal!!!!

Mama came home and helped me with it! It was a fun project to do together. We are scrapbookers. If you know anything about scrapbooking, you know that it can take 20 minutes to decide whether dark blue or light blue paper is better for the page. For the trip journal, there were so many choices! Did I want to do quotes, a collage look, random stickers….

The journal itself was actually a free one that I picked up at the NAIS (National Association of Independent School) conference. It was the perfect size and was ring bound, so great for travel and taking notes on the fly. Love free things!



I think the result was pretty good!



While I was waiting for the journal cover to laminate, I took some pretty artsy pictures. Love it!



Still waiting for the laminator to finish. Happy!!



After that I found miscellaneous things that we still needed to pack (like that zune cord.)

Zumba class with Mama and Sarah was from 6:30-7:30. We have really enjoyed doing Zumba and tonight was especially fun! Our teacher brought jingle scarves to tie around our waists while we danced. I was Jasmine! How appropriate!

Came home to yummy homemade Chinese food. Not quite Disney food, but very good. And I used my Disney chopsticks, bought last January in Mitsukoshi!

After dinner, we all pitched in with dishes. I finished up my taxes, as I would be away on April 15th. I just had to finish state taxes. I owed $1.00. What is that???? Read up on DIS updates, watched new episodes of Criminal Minds and CSI. And tried not to stare at the clock.

Excited sisters!!!



Two thumbs up for Disney!



Is this real life!???!!!???!!



Our not-a-puppy-but-still-acts-like-one Lizzy was so confused! Where are you going???



The plan for tomorrow was to leave school at 2pm and book it to the airport! We were trying to take advantage of the Move-Up option with US Airways, and get on a flight that left 2 hours earlier! We didn’t book it originally because there was always the chance we’d hit random construction and then lose our seats completely. According to the online seating chart, there were still 6 seats available. Did we get lucky?????

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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-19-2013, 10:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msbiscuit View Post
This sounds fun - I love sister trips! I think it's because I miss my own sister and our trips to WDW together so much. Can't wait to see where this takes you!
It was very fun! Definitely different with just the two of us! We were joking that even though I'm older, there weren't any adults!
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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:32 PM   #7
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Joining in! I took a trip with my sisters a couple years ago and it was so much fun! Can't wait to hear about it!
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:41 PM   #8
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Joining in! I want to take a Disney trip with my sister one day (just she and I), maybe after our kids are grown it will happen.
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Old 04-20-2013, 08:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdwgirl03 View Post
Joining in! I took a trip with my sisters a couple years ago and it was so much fun! Can't wait to hear about it!
Welcome! It was definitely a lot fun!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SEASONK View Post
Joining in! I want to take a Disney trip with my sister one day (just she and I), maybe after our kids are grown it will happen.
Welcome! You should definitely go! Our trip was so short, just 4 days (plus a night for travel there) but we still got a lot done! I'm sure the house would still be standing when you got back
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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:28 AM   #10
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Last day of work!
April 11


IT IS DISNEY DAY! Unfortunately, I still had to be focused enough to teach! (If they only knew what I was really thinking about…)

I started the day with 8th grade. It was my first time with them, and I was a bit nervous. Imagine 8th graders, about to graduate from the school and go on to high school in a few months, who have already received high school acceptances and it is their first year with me. A bit scary, to say the least.

Luckily, we seemed to get along well. I played a game with them to break the ice, and we just talked about logistics. Obviously, they would have a sub the next day (because I would be in the Magic Kingdom!) and on Monday they were headed to Boston for a 4 day trip (more on that later.)

After 8th grade I had I had two periods of break, in which I attempted to be productive. I did accomplish a few things on the to-do list, but mostly I kept checking and rechecking that I was ready for my immediate departure!

Then I had two 3rd grade classes. They are a challenge, but I love them. I had one of those “teacher moments” with one of my students. It was incredible. We are doing Recorder Karate, which allows the kids to practice individually and then play for me to earn belts (string) depending on the song. He was a bit frustrated and just couldn’t get the fingering or rhythm of one section. I had him go back and practice on his own for another 10 minutes. He came back playing the song like a recorder pro! He even fixed problems that I hadn’t even addressed with him yet! I was so proud of him and I made sure that he knew it.

After 3rd grade, I had lunch duty. Forget Disney…. that was the highlight of my day.

Then I had a meeting followed by my second 8th grade class. This class was a lot more talkative and it was a little harder staying focused. That’s alright though. I don’t think I was terribly focused either!

It was about 1:30pm at this point. This class let out at 2pm (school lets out a 3:30, but I had gotten special permission to leave early!) and I was literally headed out my back door. (I have both an indoor and outdoor door leading to my room)

Uh. Oh. Gotta use the facilities.

What to do???? Conversation going on in my head (while teaching): I could try and wait until we are at the airport, but then we might not get on the flight. Besides, I don’t think I could wait until the airport. I could try and take the time when I get home, but again, we might not make it to the airport in time. I could attempt to go before I leave school, but then I would leave here late. And what if I get stopped in the construction on the highway???

Don’t tell anyone, but I ended up letting the kids out exactly 1 minute early. I ran to the bathroom, and then ran back into my room, grabbed my bags, and headed out the door!!!

I was in my car at 2:03 and headed home!

I breathed a sigh of relief and then it happened. I saw it.

Construction.

Of course, they decided today was the day to pave one lane of the highway. There was a line of stopped traffic.

Will I make it home in time??

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May 2002-AKL.....May 2007-Off Site Marching Band trip.....January 2012-POFQ.....April 2013-POR.....August 2013-AOA/POFQ/YC.....March 2014-POFQ

The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-20-2013, 09:35 AM   #11
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Flight!
April 11


On the way home, I ran into CONSTRUCTION. Uh-Oh!

Thankfully, it was actually moving, steadily, but slowly and it didn’t take more than a minute and a half out of my schedule.

Then I ended up following a school bus and then a “granny driver”. MOVE IT. Don’t you know I’ve got places to be???

I drove up our driveway at 2:20, parked in the garage, grabbed my bags, and literally skipped over to my Dad’s car! He and my sister were already in the car and waiting for my arrival. We had even preset all of the things I would need for the trip down right in his car so I didn’t even need to go in the house! Talk about planning!

We got to the airport about 3pm. Now, to recap. There is a flight that we are trying to Move-Up to that departs at 3:55. We had accomplished the first hurdle, getting to the airport in time. But we still had to get the ticket and get through security!

We headed straight inside and found an open ticketing agent. She said that there were seats available on the flight! Unfortunately, she said that the flight would be delayed by an hour. Decision time. We decided to go for it. Leaving at 4:55 is still better than leaving at 6:15!

With a bit of extra time, we headed leisurely through security and towards the gate. No rush. We got time to kill.

It’s about 3:30 at this point. We found a set of seats in front of a nice, big window. What a great place to relax! We start thinking about grabbing dinner here or waiting until we get to the resort. I pull out my trip journal to update it with a few details.

And then we hear it.

“Flight 735 from PHL to MCO is now in its FINAL BOARDING”

WHAT???? PANIC ENSUING!

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The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-20-2013, 09:56 AM   #12
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Flight (Part 2) and Magical Express!
April 11


When we last left off, they were calling for our FINAL BOARDING!

First off, we weren't at our correct gate, because we hadn't found it yet. We were in gate A10. Along the wall was A6-A7-A8-A9-A11. No A10 in sight. We take a chance and walk a bit further down. It was one of those larger gates at the end of the hallway, which was why it was out of order.
Thankfully, Sarah and I were able to book it because we were one of the last two groups to board!

At this point, we are grinning from ear to ear. Not only did we survive the mad dash to the plane, but we are leaving on time!

The only hitch in this situation is that we will be separated on the plane. The Move-Up seats were not together. I was in 7D and Sarah was in 30F. We decide that Sarah would be further back that way I would be the one waiting for her when getting off the plane at MCO. She doesn't like waiting by herself in crowded places.

This sounds like a good plan until I send my 13 year old sister to the back of the plane to deal with finding her seat and putting her luggage up all by herself. It's not like she's unaware by any means, but this would be her first solo flight experience. I just hope everything went okay!

This plane is so huge! It is one with 2 seats  3 seats  2 seats. I was in the exact middle of the plane. I sat between two completely different people. The person on my left was (as a wrote in my journal) va-va-VOOM. Matching everything. Everything was perfectly placed, from her hair to her heels and her nails. Her nails matched her shoes. She also seemed like she couldn't be more inconvenienced to be sitting in coach. So upset there were no first class seats available, she says loudly on her cell phone before take-off.

Person to my right was very nice. Her name was Jennifer and while she was temporarily living in Florida, her home is in Colorado. She had recently had surgery at a hospital in Philadelphia to correct a tear in her shoulder, and was flying to Florida to recuperate and have physical therapy before heading home. She was one of those great people to randomly talk to and she had a lot of life advice and was very encouraging to me about my new career as a teacher.

The plane took off just after 4:00 and we were in the air!

During the flight, Sarah actually came up and sat in an empty seat just behind us on the plane. Yay! We got to sit together! Even better, we were only 7 rows back and got to deplane faster!

We landed right at 6:15 on the dot. This was crazy as 6:15 was the departure time on our original flight. Yay for more Disney time!!!

As we were about to deplane, the captain came on and said that there was a security issue in the airport and we were not allowed to leave the plane. Thats not what you want to hear! Luckily, it only delayed us about 5 minutes and we were soon on our way!

We happily found our way to the fake-o-rail and found the longest line I had ever seen for everyones first Disney ride. Apparently, the security scare had grounded the fake-o-rail for a bit so there was a huge back-up. Dont judge us, but since we had come out of the intersecting hallway at just the right point, we just sort of joined the line at the beginning of it. I have to get to Disney!

We went out from the fake-o-rail, down the escalator, and then down the elevator to Level 1. The elevators let out right at Magical Express! How convenient! Yay for being lazy and not wanting to search around for another escalator.

We were so happy! I skipped right up to the happy CMs, scanned my booklet, and skipped on down Row 5. We walked right on to our Disney Cruise line bus, and got in the 3rd row on the right hand side. I was a little sad not to be on a real Magical Express bus, but these windows are really cool. I'll deal.

A picture of a real one next to us!



We left right at 7:10!




Happy girl!



Our driver was Thomas and he did his job well. I was more focused on the Daisy Duck sticker that was stuck above the windshield.

He said we would be going to four resorts. They would be (in order!) Port Orleans Riverside, Boardwalk, Beach Club, and Yacht Club!

During the trip, it was obvious that we were more excited than everyone else combined. Come on, people! You're in Disney! Get happy!

There were two people right in front of us talking the whole time, on their phones. Excuse me, but I have a movie to watch!

The trip was uneventful. We tried to get a decent picture of the purple gates of joy but only have a video. Tis okay.

We gave Mama and Daddy a call during the drive. Yes, we made it to Florida in one piece!



Pretty soon we were pulling up to our home away from home!



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May 2002-AKL.....May 2007-Off Site Marching Band trip.....January 2012-POFQ.....April 2013-POR.....August 2013-AOA/POFQ/YC.....March 2014-POFQ

The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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Old 04-21-2013, 05:09 PM   #13
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Check-In!
April 11


We hopped off the bus, as gleeful as can be, and waited to the side for our bags. They were the last to come off the bus, of course. No matter, we were headed inside in no time!

I love the feeling of walking in to the resort the first time. All of the CMs are smiling at you, you are smiling at them, and there is such an excitement building! It’s time for Disney!

We headed over to where it said “Online Check-In” but there wasn’t anyone manning the desks. Someone came and guided us over to the Concierge area and Stephanie helped us check-in! She was from Australia and had the most wonderful accent. I think it is my third favorite accent, following English and Irish!

I have to mention how strange it was being “the adult in charge”. I was the go-to for any questions, had to get all of the important info, etc. So strange. I think I like it much better when my Mama is there to help take care of things. Always the child. I’m telling you, there weren’t any adults on this trip!

So we start getting our folder and room information when Sarah suddenly notices that Stephanie had on a lanyard full of pins! Even more amazing, the first pin on the right hand side just happens to be a Winnie the Pooh pin! (All along, Sarah has said that one of her goals was to find a Winnie the Pooh pin to trade for. And there it was!)

In the blink of an eye, Sarah pulled her lanyard from her bag and traded not only for the Winnie the Pooh pin, but for a Tinker Bell pin! Her two favorites! She was so happy and it really started our trip off on the right foot.



Check-In continued as usual. I even got a BIRTHDAY PIN! I was super excited for this moment. It wasn’t until about a month or so ago that I realized I could celebrate my birthday on this trip! (My birthday is really May 20, so only a little more than a month away!)

And then, Stephanie gave us some amazing information! We were staying in a Royal Room with a RIVER VIEW and it was on the THIRD FLOOR! She called it the best room in the whole place!!! This was such a surprise to Sarah as I told her that I was not able to get a River View (and being the nature girl that she is, she was hoping for one!) but I booked it as a surprise. Passholder Room Only discounts are amazing! I obviously didn’t know about getting the 3rd floor and I couldn’t believe what luck we had! It was exactly what Sarah wanted!

We were in Oak Manor, so it was super close to the bridge that connected to everything. After a tour of the map and a bit more information, we were sent on our merry way! I think I was still in shock at this point. When we got to the building, I couldn’t even remember our room number that was told to us 5 minutes before… moving on.

Luckily, Sarah remembered it and we started in search for the elevator. We found it in the very middle of the building, off of the courtyard. And thus began our little game for the trip…who can reach the button first? Who can press the floor number first? And who can press the door close button first?

Yes, we’re children.

Finally we came to the magical moment. Opening the door to room 9419!!!
AHHHHH! Excitement, wonder, amazement! Those words don’t even begin to give the room justice. We were Princesses!!!

We were in the room about 8:00. I couldn’t stop thinking “If we had been on our regularly scheduled flight, we wouldn’t have even landed yet!!!”



So many things to look at! Draperies, headboard, FIREWORKS!, Stacey!

Couldn’t focus on a single thing!

Then. WAIT. Sarah! Don’t lie on the bed yet!

We needed some pictures!

Towel Mickey!



Best wall art ever!



My bed!



Sarah's bed!



She liked the bed because of these pictures hanging beside it:



Nightstand:



Fancy table and chairs! Love the details of the lamp hanging above it!



Sink area! The toilet/shower section was behind a door. Didn't get a picture of that...sorry! The sink picture will have to do!



I love the details of the tv cabinet.



Beautiful draperies!



I finally let Sarah lay on the bed. She was a bit excited.





Sadly, in all of the excitement, I didn't get a picture of Aladdin's rug, the faucets, the wallpaper trim....I'll get better on my room pictures!

After taking the much needed photographic evidence, we spent a bit of time getting situated. We actually took the time to unpack, as I knew I was not doing it later. We each got a drawer for our clothes, chose a sink for our very own, and got the park backpack together!

Essentials: room keys, sunglasses, camera, video camera, pins, Sarah’s book for autographs, and ponchos just in case!

Next, we were headed for some dinner. It was about 8:30 or so at this point, and neither of us had eaten since lunch at school. Sarah wanted to have dinner at the resort so we headed to the food court!

We didn’t get very far though. Of course we had to stop and admire the view out from our door. There was a wonderful fountain with fun colors and we could see the trees surrounding the serene river. So peaceful! (Of course I didn't get a picture at that particular moment. I'm sure I have another one on another day....)

The food court definitely wasn’t peaceful! This was our first taste of why April crowds are much different than January crowds! (Also why POFQ crowds are much different than POR crowds!)

I was in the mood for some good ol’ Disney pizza so I headed to that line. While I was waiting for my pizza, I got my first “Happy Birthday!” because of my pin! Sarah headed for the chicken nuggets and fries! She said that she was sad that they didn’t have chicken nuggets at POFQ while we were there, so she was happy to have them at POR.





We each picked up our refillable mugs and Sarah grabbed a Mickey straw for fun. She filled her mug with orange Fanta and I got some water.
The food was yummy and we were glad to fill our tummies.

After that, we headed out to grab a boat to Downtown Disney!

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May 2002-AKL.....May 2007-Off Site Marching Band trip.....January 2012-POFQ.....April 2013-POR.....August 2013-AOA/POFQ/YC.....March 2014-POFQ

The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

Last edited by Happy Duck; 06-12-2013 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 07:41 PM   #14
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Downtown Disney!
April 11


After filling our tummies with yummy Disney food, we headed over to the boat dock to catch a boat to Downtown Disney! I started walking in through the exit…whoops! Once we headed the right way, I just had to stop for a picture! The view looking back towards the resort was so pretty!

Unfortunately, my little camera could not properly capture the awesome-ness which was the view. How dare it. This was all I have for my troubles:



As it turns out, the boat was loading whilst I was turned around attempting to capture the prettiness. Sarah shouted for me, and as I turned around, the boat captain roped off the line! He told me that I couldn’t get on the boat!

Luckily, I wore him down pretty quickly. He was the best boat driver I have ever had! He was joking around with everyone and just a great CM.

Here's the view of the food court area from the boat:



It was a nice 20 minute ride. I love seeing all of the treehouse villas! They are so neat looking! While we were on the boat there were some fireworks going off. We could just see one or two through the trees. With my bad sense of direction, I have no idea which ones they were, but I’m tempted to say Epcot.

As soon as we got to Downtown Disney, we had some very important business to attend to! We hopped off at the Marketplace Boat Dock and headed straight for Guest Services.

I needed to activate my ANNUAL PASS!

I had purchased the pass online, thinking that I needed it in order to book a Passholder Discount. Turns out, I could have waited (and they never asked for it at check-in anyway) but oh well! We waited just a bit before Lauryn (GREAT NAME!) welcomed me to the world of being an AP holder!

She asked me if Minnie Mouse was alright for my pass, and I was about to say okay, but then I remembered that other characters were available! I asked for Donald instead! They’re still writing the names and date on with a sharpie marker, so that was a little strange, but who cares really. I had my AP!

While we were there we also had to get Sarah’s ticket, because I had forgotten during check-in. Sarah chose Mickey Mouse for her 4 day ticket!

Of course, while we were there, I forgot to purchase my Tables in Wonderland card. This seemed to be a pattern with me…forget to buy ticket during check-in, forget Tables in Wonderland…. I’ll get it eventually!

After that, we headed over to Ghiradelli for a little treat! Sarah originally wanted one of the fancy sundaes, but decided on a strawberry malt. She doesn’t get the chance to have a malt often, and never a strawberry one! That was a nice treat for her. Even though malt isn’t usually my thing, I had a taste. I can confirm that it was very good!



I had a single scoop Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. The angels were singing. It was soooooo good. Didn’t need any sauce, toppings, ANYTHING. Just give me that and a spoon. This blew all other ice creams away!



After that, we decided to head through the World of Disney. Just to walk through, not taking much time…yeah right! Has anyone ever been able to just “walk through” that store???

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May 2002-AKL.....May 2007-Off Site Marching Band trip.....January 2012-POFQ.....April 2013-POR.....August 2013-AOA/POFQ/YC.....March 2014-POFQ

The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

Last edited by Happy Duck; 06-12-2013 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 07:50 PM   #15
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Downtown Disney (Part 2)
April 11


We had decided to “walk-through” World of Disney! Look what we found!

Great! Now I have guilt! RAWR!



This was the cutest shirt ever! I almost bought it here…and later in AK. It is on my list for the next trip!



Sarah loved these Oswald ears!



All along she said she wanted to get them, but once she actually saw them, she thought better of it. While they are cute, they aren’t the easiest accessory for park touring.

After our “walk-through” we ended up purchasing:

2 pens for Sarah’s friends
Chef Mickey’s Cookbook
Minnie car antenna for Mama
Mickey girl decal for my car
2 air fresheners (Mickey Bar and Minnie Apple)

AND

DUFFY THE DISNEY BEAR!



He is so cute and I was so happy to find him!

I actually looked at their faces, and they are all just a bit different. I looked at a few before deciding on my new friend! I was originally going to wait for Epcot, but he was just chilling right there waiting for me.

Besides, I could use my AP discount. Happy!

After that, we walked through the Marketplace and headed out towards the buses. We didn’t wait long, but the bus was full by the time it got to us and we stood on the way back.

When we got back to Riverside, we couldn’t remember which depot to get off at! We came to one depot and it had “Oak Manor” written on it, so we hopped off of the bus. It wasn’t the right one. We wanted the North depot and we got off at South! So now we were trying to find our way back to our room in the dark. And didn’t know where we were on property. Great.

Luckily, we’re pretty scrappy. I think Sarah was about ready to navigate by stars, but we managed to get back to our room.

Once we were there, we finished unpacking a few more things and organized a bit. That always helps because you don’t feel like you are living out of a suitcase.

We found a nice surprise in my suitcase! Daily notes from Mama!






Sarah couldn’t wait to go swimming so she got into her suit and we headed to the quiet pool. It was conveniently right next to our building!

We got there about 11:30pm. She swam while I updated my trip journal with details of our adventures thus far! I actually sat on the side and soaked my feet whilst updating. It was so nice!

(Again, while we were enjoying the pool, we realized that had we gotten the original flight, we would have probably gotten to our room about 30 minutes ago. CRAZY! Just a few more hours the first night makes all the difference in the world!)

We had only been there about 4 hours, and it was already an excellent vacation!

Good night!

PS. I promise there will be more pictures in the updates after this one. I wasn't too concerned with picture taking yet.

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May 2002-AKL.....May 2007-Off Site Marching Band trip.....January 2012-POFQ.....April 2013-POR.....August 2013-AOA/POFQ/YC.....March 2014-POFQ

The Wilderness Must be Explored (for 15 days!)- A Mother/Daughter Trip!

April 2013 Trip Report: It's EXHILARATING in the BIG BLUE WORLD!

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