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Old 10-31-2013, 06:58 PM   #1
ksromack
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We're 2 Empty-Nesters on the Deluxe DDP! December 2012 trip to Orlando

Hello! Introductions!
Im Kathy. Been in St. Louis all of my life with the exception of 5 years spent in Columbia Missouri....graduated from Mizzou and stayed for a year working in a hospital there. This is my husband and I at a Missouri winery a couple years ago. As you can see we are big sports fans.....happy my Cardinals had such a great year and made it to the final dance!



I turned 50 last May and wanted to make WDW my birthday trip....hubby and I both knew if we went in December the weather would be milder and we could celebrate our 11th anniversary AND my birthday and sneak in some awesome Christmas celebrations to boot. Steve is my cohort. He doesnt love Disney as much as I do but hes a good sport and never once balked at any of my requests for photopass photos. Hes a gem! Steve is 4.5 years younger than me. We met at work where we are both Medical Technologists. This is a second marriage for the both of us. Our last trip to WDW was in 2004 and we brought 4 of our kids. My dd had a national dance competition in Orlando so we always used that as an excuse each year for a vacation&..the kids were ages 13, 12, 11, and 9 at the time. We had our hands full. Hormones were raging. Our patience was tested on a daily basis&&at the end of that trip hubby told me we would come back&&ALONE! Fast forward 7 years later and here we are!

Thanks for joining my trip report! We spent 10 days in Orlando, the first weekend was spent at Universal on-site and the rest was spent at Port Orleans Riverside. This report will be full of lots of food pictures and lots of Christmas celebration.

Day 1-Saturday Dec 8-travel day and Islands of Adventure
Day 1-Royal Pacific Resort, Suess Land, Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Day 1-More WWoHP and Mythos, best lunch ever
Day 1-Grinchmas, Despicable Me, Macy's Parade, Mannheim Steamroller
Evening 1-Moaning Myrtle, Honey Dukes, Wands, and Latin Quarter
Day 2-Sunday Dec 9-Choc Cauldron Cake/Pumpkin Tart,more Royal Pacific Resort photos, and the Forbidden Journey
Day 2-more Forbidden Journey, Flight of the Hippogriff, Three Broomsticks, more WWoHP
Day 2-more WWoHP, Suess Land
Day 2-back to Universal Studios, Despicable Me parade, floats, rides, lunch Margaritaville
Day 2-Move to Port Orleans-Riverside, resort pictures (hammocks), DTD
Still day 2? Alligator Bayou room, DHS-Osbourne Lights
um, it's day 2-more Osbourne Lights, Little Mermaid, Fantasmic, late dinner 50's Prime Time Cafe, our little Tree!
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:05 PM   #2
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Saturday, Dec 8, 2012-Travel Day!
So were up pretty early. I was so afraid Id oversleep Im sure I never really slept at all. I had been packing for the last month or so (hahaha) so the packing part wasnt a problem at all. The only real concern was how much I was actually bringing with us. December temperatures are a bit unpredictable in Florida (heck, they are unpredictable in StL too), so I packed shorts, capris, pants, dress clothes, play clothes, swim wear&&pretty much every type of clothing known to woMAN. The problem? Well the problem was having a nice new ginormous piece of swivel luggage! I was sure it was going to be over 50 pounds. Surprise&.it was right at 50! So I had to pray our scales weighed similar to SW Airlines scales. Surprise again&&it did&&at least it did on the way TO Orlando <insert ominous foreshadowing music here>.

Here's Max....he's pretty sad we're leaving for 10 days but happy he'll be spending *his* vacation at Anna's (my oldest dd, 22 yo), where he will be spoiled rotten......



So, were up. Were packed. Were ready to go. We decided that it was a good idea to have Ben, our 20 yo son take us to the airport, thus leaving our van in the driveway. We figured it would not only save us parking fee $$, it would also give the illusion that our home was not being left empty for 10 days right before Christmas. Ben wasnt done with finals until Dec 14th so he wouldnt be back home until the weekend we returned home from Orlando. We left our house at about 4:45am, plenty of time for a 6:40am flight. We arrived by 5am, checked our bags at curbside, then headed in with our carry-ons. Security wasnt too bad at all. Last June we flew to LAX to visit my husbands sister and it was my first flight since 2 weeks before 9-11, so I was a nervous Nelly&.and Im still not fond of flying&.so Im still a nervous Nelly. Last June I must have set off the metal detector and I had to have my hand swabbed and the resulting paper was run through a machine. I asked about it after I passed the test&..they were checking for residue on my hands, as seen with terrorists! So fast forward to 6 months later&..I was fine and set off NO metal detectors The only thing I can think of is I had just put on hand lotion in the car because I had it in my purse&.and at the last minute I realized it was a liquid and would be confiscated&&.so I used it and left the bottle in the car
Here we are at the airport, ready to go!



So were through security and were waiting to board the plane. It was close to 5:45 at this point. We find a Starbucks, have a latte each and split a Cranberry Bliss bar. As we sit in the airport I notice all kinds of families in various Mickey Mouse and Friends clothing. Its a non-stop flight so Im pretty sure 99.9% of the people around us are going to WDW. For a moment I am sad. Our children are older. I miss the ages that most of these kids are&&seeing WDW through their eyes is so different than seeing it through my own. I am startled out of my daydream to a child screaming&&.okay, Im not sad any more! Were in the group B boarders&&.somewhere in the middle. Luckily we were able to sit together, had a window seat, and were right over a wing. Im not sure why that made me feel better, but I think I was thinking I could just walk over that wing should the need to exit quickly arises. . Im feeling pretty brave. I dont even need a Bloody Mary to get through the flight. The flight goes by quickly, we get a stunning sunrise, and we arrive at MCO at 9:50 am (10 minutes early). We found our bags at baggage claim fairly quickly and get into an elevator up to the level where we catch the Mears shuttle.

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Old 10-31-2013, 07:14 PM   #3
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Hi Kathy! I'm in!! I am looking forward to hearing about your trip.
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:52 PM   #4
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We’re staying at Royal Pacific Resort for our first night so we are unable to ride the DME. Mistake #1: Missing the ability to ride DME from MCO to our resort. We will not make this mistake again. Transportation would have been so much less complicated had we stayed onsite at the beginning AND end of our trip…..anywho, we’re at curbside at 10:15 and at 10:40 our driver arrives.

We’re the first on the 10 person shuttle……we travel over to the “B” side of MCO and pick up 4 more people. Of course, our stop is the last. By 10:50 we are enroute. First stop was Shingle Creek Resort (did I get that right)? Stop 2 was the Convention Center and that passenger wasn’t quite sure where she was supposed to be…..finally it was us and pair of ladies. We discovered that they were staying at RPR too….and after the first part of their trip they are moving over to POR too! Small world. We never did see them at POR, though……we did see them on our way to IOA the next day, at rope drop!



This little guy welcomed us:



So we’re dropped off at 11:30am……we get checked in (had originally requested a higher floor with a park-view)……didn’t get either but I was tired and neither one of us wanted to wait. Our room was on the 3rd floor, which was lobby level, room 1323, with a nice lush view of lots of greenery.

. The room itself was very nice. I wouldn’t hesitate to stay here again as the quirks were very good. Staying onsite gave you early entry to the WWoHP the next day and it gave us “Express” line access for nearly every ride in the parks (excluding WWoHP). We never waited more than a few minutes for ANY ride! We oo’d and ah’d at our room, dropped off our bags, then headed back to the lobby to acquire our “Express” passes.





Our cute Express passes:


We both had on jeans and our Cardinal’s jerseys. I was sporting some darling Red Mary Jane Crocs that matched my outfit.



No socks for me…… We walked the pathway to IOA and were in park by 12:15. That walk was so gorgeous! I would grow to HATE that walk! Mistake #2: Never wear any type of shoe without socks while on vacation.

Pretty walk.....the water taxi in the background:



Okay, so we’re in line for The Hulk by 12:30 and done by 12:38. Then we rode Spiderman, done by 1pm.

We headed to Hogwarts just to see if I knew the fast way to get there through Suess Land.....and wow, that area is so cute!!!!!




Sign for Grinchmas:





We'll be visiting this area for lunch later:


We walked around Hogwarts, taking in all the elaborate façade and shared a frozen Butterbeer at Hogshead (received a 10% AAA discount-yum yum). We bought postcards (which I never mailed out…..as a matter of fact, I have no clue where those went) and we had them “post-mark stamped” at the Owl Post.




Buy your butterbeer inside....you can use your AAA card for a 10% discount:











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Old 10-31-2013, 07:54 PM   #5
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We hadn’t eaten since our little snack of Vanilla Wafers on the plane so we were getting a little hungry. Our lunch reservations weren’t until 2:15 so we popped over to Mythos at this point to see if we could be seated early…..um…..no way. There was at least an hour wait! Very glad I made those advanced reservations through Open Table for Mythos! Everyone was being turned away and I had heard such good things about this restaurant……we goofed around Suess Landing a little and rode a few rides there…..…..by then it was close to our lunch time. We sat down at 2:15 and were done eating at 2:50.



The food there was delicious! The rosemary bread was perfect and even the butter was the best we’ve ever had……perhaps being starving helped. Lol



I ordered:
Risotto of the Day $15.99 (which turned out to be spinach and mushroom risotto with beef tips and a wonderful wine reduction)



Steve ordered the :
Mythos Bistro Filet $16.99
with mashed potatoes, truffle butter, topped with spicy fried onions
His steak was very good and the fancy mashed potatoes were good and even better with some of the gravy from my beef tips! We both agreed that the asparagus on our plates were wonderful co-stars to the entrée!



Our lunch was $31.64 with AAA discount.

Our lunch was delicious!!!!! Next up, a Grinchy show.........stay tuned.
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Old 10-31-2013, 08:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwynne View Post
Hi Kathy! I'm in!! I am looking forward to hearing about your trip.
Thank you! It's my first trip report!
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:26 AM   #7
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So, I left off with that lovely lunch at Mythos.......boy were we full! The inside of that restaurant was nice too and for some reason I can't find the picture of the cute trees that flanked the entryway.

So, Grinchmas.....let me start off by saying that I LOVE musicals. Steve TOLERATES musicals. The line was humongous. I mean, wrapped around several times....and it was HOT. We will actually encounter very mild temps the rest of the trip...but for some reason (probably because WE were waiting outside in a LINE) it was HOT and in the sun! At least the line was fairly organized and I didn't NOTICE line butters....





It was recommended we arrive no less than 30 minutes before showtime (I read that on the DIS somewhere). We arrived 35 min early. As the line moved we were a bit apprehensive that we would not make it inside before the show started. As luck would have it, we arrived inside with 2 minutes to spare&..and there were only 15 seats remaining as we sat down! Kismet! The show was very good.....everyone was very talented. It was something I'm sure at one point I'd have paid big bucks for at the theater....and here I got it for the price of admission to Islands Of Adventure

Here are a few pictures from the show:






and one more:



After Grinchmas we high-tailed it to Universal Studios. We knew we wanted to catch the Macys parade (which had many of the floats/balloons from the Thankgiving Day parade from NY). We also knew we needed to claim a spot to see Manheim Steamroller, which started at 6:30. We snuck in a ride at Despicable Me (wait time of 45 minutes, but for us, Express wait time of 10). Loved this ride! The minions crack me up and the ride and preshow was so cute and followed the movie perfectly.





Our exit from the ride was perfect timing as we had 15 minutes to spare once that ride was over. We nabbed a spot in the courtyard so wed have a better view of Manheim Steamroller&all we had to do was turn around to catch the parade (wed be able to see most of the balloons but missed some of the ground level activity). This is when Steve went out in search of a beverage for us to enjoy while watching the show, I stayed to lay claim to our realestate. As I sat in our spot people (and ride watching), I pondered the idea of riding this ride:





Steve brought back sodas for us (supposedly there were no beer cups in the stand close to us)??? The parade started:









So the parade is over and what do you suppose happened? Yep, ALL those people who had a nice spot on the street rushed over to find a nice spot on the courtyard to see this headliner:



So I guess you already have figured out that it doesnt matter how early or how prepared you are for a show that is open to the public. More than half of that place filled up within 2 minutes of show-time. FAMILIES of 6 people tried to squeeze into the space of 2 even as the show started. Its a courtyard. Seating was on the ground on the astro turf of Production Circle. Several of the sidewalks were to be kept clear. We were so smart to claim a spot with free sidewalk on 2 sides so we wouldnt be crowded&&hahahahahahahaha

This is a little fuzzy but it's Chip Davis with his back turned to us:




Mistake #3: Expecting 50 year old knees to be able to sit on concrete in one position with a gazillion people all around for over an hour&and expecting people to have manners just because you do! I love Manheim Steamroller. They just ooze Christmas spirit for me&..Im sure I own every Christmas CD they have made. They sounded great and I loved the whole idea of an open amphitheater concert. I just dont love the idea of people squeezing in at the last minute when I gave up some park time to secure a spot for us EARLY! We stayed for 4 or so songs. I just couldn't sit in one spot any longer and there was no room to re-situate myself. At this point my feet really started hurting too and it was time for us to leave that craziness. We did learn from being there early that neither one of us planned to ride the Rip Roaring Rocket (or whatever its called). Lots of screaming coming from that ride (it was right in the area where the concert was).

Next up, back to Islands of Adventure for WWoHP after dark
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:51 AM   #8
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So we make our way over to Islands Of Adventure and back to WWoHP...It looked so different in the dark…..and I noticed the music so much more in the dark! It was awesome! Of course I needed to use the bathroom so I could listen to Moaning Myrtle.



I taped it on my cell phone…..got some funny looks too! I don't think we rode any rides at this point...we just wanted to take it all in. We were getting pretty hungry but our dinner reservations weren't until 8:30 at Latin Quarter.....we thought we'd try and get in a little earlier so we headed toward the exit........On our way out we bought Thing 1 and Thing 2 shirts and a cute Grinch/Max Christmas ornament. We also stopped at HoneyDukes and got chocolate frogs, peanut butter fudge, a pumpkin torte, and a chocolate cauldron cake. The latter two provided our breakfast for the next morning.









We stopped at Olivander’s where I bought my sister Hermione’s wand (she requested this before we left), because yes, she's an adult child like myself



Like I mentioned above, we had dinner reservations at Latin Quarter at 8:30 because I anticipated closing down the parks at 8pm but it was only 7:30…..we walked over to CityWalk anyway to see if we could be seated early. No problem. It seemed quite empty for a Saturday night.



We started off with and appetizer and an adult beverage because.....well, because I neglected to bring Ibuprofen with me and I needed some pain-relief

For an appetizer we ordered : Queso Fundido (Melted mild Latino white lightly spiced served in an iron skillet with crispy corn tortillas, topped with Chorizo sausage) $7.99



Steve had a margarita and I ordered a “Little Havanna” (The original Cuban cocktail with a fruity twist. Don Q Limon Rum, lime and mango. Served frozen with a lime---Yummmmmm)!



This deserves a closer look:



I’d show you our entrees but my camera batteries were all dead at this point!
I ordered : Churrasco Skirt Steak-grilled marinated skirt steak served with chimichurri sauce over a chorizo garbanzo frito . This was absolutely perfecto. Tender steak with an unbelievable sauce!
Steve had: Roasted Pork Loin-Slow roasted and basted in our cilantro mojo. Served with boniato mash, black beans, and mango puree. The pork was so tender and the potato thing tasted like a cross between a sweet potato and white potato…with black beans. According to their menu Boniato is similar to a sweet potato on the the outside but is shorter and rounder and has a white rather than orange flesh……Both plates were delish! We were out of there by 8:20. Total cost of this meal was...I have not clue.....but it wasn't cheap... but it WAS worth it!

We headed to the water taxi, which we just missed…..caught a fight between a couple who fought right in front of their children (and all of us)…….this was sad……finally got on the ferry and made it back to the resort. We really wanted to find the hot tub but my feet were really hurting at this point. When we got back to the room I discovered why! I had a huge blister which covered my entire left pinky toe and a lovely blister on the side of the arch of my right foot. We found the moleskin and I told myself I’d wear a different pair of shoes tomorrow. We had a nice cup of joe from the Keurig in the room…..a nice warm shower…..and I was asleep before my head hit the pillow! Tomorrow morning is early entry to WWoHP!
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Old 11-01-2013, 02:38 PM   #9
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Sunday, December 9, 2012
Wake up at o’dark thirty…..there is no time for resting….we are on vacation and we check in at POR later today so it’s time to get going! We got a wake-up call from the Blue Man Group (sadly we didn’t get to visit them personally this trip) anyway we threw down the choc cauldron cake and pumpkin tart we so smartly purchased last night while at Honeydukes!



These were DELICIOUS! I highly recommend them. I'm not even a huge pumpkin pie eater but this tart was yum!

We headed out early as we had Early Entry for WWoHP and we didn't want to waste a second....but on the way to the water ferry we stopped for some pictures of the scenery around Royal Pacific Resort. There was a nice tree up in the lobby and all around the tree a train and some of the cutest gingerbread houses!



This tree was downstairs:

sadly we never had time for the pool:



We headed out to the water taxi and discovered two of the ladies we shared a Mears shuttle with the day before from the airport. We started talking with them and learned that they will be traveling to POR on Tuesday for the remainder of their vacation. Sadly, we never saw them at POR. Anyway, I digress……the water taxi wide is so nice, just as nice as it was the night before….what a wonderful way to get to the parks.


And this is by Margaritaville....we'd come back here for lunch later today.


Almost there......


We headed straight to HP as we knew we wanted to ride the Forbidden Journey first.




So we're there before the park opens to the public and the BAD thing is you miss all the details of the queue! We didn't even go through the maze of the greenhouse:

I actually stopped to take pictures and waved people ahead of us....the detail is really amazing in the queue of the Forbidden Journey.



More forbidden journey in next post:
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:06 PM   #10
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The talking pictures:









I shamefully closed my eyes as soon as I saw the dementers only to open them for all the spiders…..so I’m afraid I missed a good portion of this ride the first time through. I thought we should ride it again only this time I would keep my eyes open. Hubby felt a little sick but agreed to ride with me one more time……
So I got these extra pictures the second time around. I tried taking some during the ride but there was no place to put a tripod,


and the Sorting Hat:


...remember I said Steve really didn't want to ride Forbidden Journey again? Well, he was serious, even though he did ride again...afterwards he needed to sit down....so I rode Flight of the Hippogriff by myself. It was such a cute ride, and trust me, his stomach could have handled it, lol.
I loved seeing Hagrid's house.....



It's a very tame roller coaster:

A view from the ride:

Here's my hubby, taken from the ride:

Steve felt a little better after resting a bit so we figured a butterbeer would hit the spot. Frozen, of course! Again, we went into Hog’s Head Pub to get our beverage as they offer 10% with a AA A card  You can’t get the discount if you purchase from the cart outside!
We didn't eat inside Three Broomsticks but here's the menu:


Again, don't buy it from here.....but it makes for a cute picture, lol

Lockers at the train station:

I really didn't want to ride Dueling Dragons and by now our early hour was almost up.....so we wandered around a little bit more taking pictures:

More of WWoHP to come.
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:07 PM   #11
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Some holiday decorations at HoneyDukes:



After WWoHP we headed to Suess Land.

I thought this was cute....decorating of the Stroller Parking:


On the way out we went through Suess Land....which I am completely enamored with........ I rode the carousel. Steve took pictures. He isn’t a carousel kind of guy

Tree:



We still hadn’t done much at Universal Studios so we headed out for that park just as Islands of Adventure started getting crowded.
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Old 11-01-2013, 04:24 PM   #12
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As we were walking around Universal we encountered this:


This guy was checking my id.....to make sure I had registered with them as an alien. lol

Then they posed with me:


We were heading towards ET when we saw the Despicable Me parade starting.....the park was so empty!







We saw some cute floats:




We first rode ET and it was so cute! I loved the movie and this ride brought back memories it. You are on a bicycle so much of the ride mimicks what it would have been if you wee ET riding back home. We both agreed this ride was cute. Next in line was MIB. My camera battery died  The ride was a shooting ride where you shoot aliens and get points. I won  Dh insists his “gun” wasn’t working properly. <rolls eyes>




We were getting pretty antsy for WDW.....but I really was sad we were missing some of the things at Universal that I wanted to see. Clearly 1.5 days is not enough time to do Universal and Islands of Adventure. We snapped some pictures on our way out of Universal and headed to Margaritaville for lunch.


This is the view from Universal....looking right at Margaritaville!

It wasn't hard for me to order. I'd seen pictures of the food before and I knew what I wanted.
Here's the menu:

Even the ice water was fancy:

- I had the Volcano Nachos (topped with chili, cheese, guacamole, sour cream, jalapenos, tomato and scallions with Chicken) $13.95

Steve ordered the Cheeseburger in Paradise Paradise (topped with American cheese, iceberg lettuce and tomato) $10.95:


Did you know that you cannot partake of alcohol before noon on a Sunday, even if you are in Margaritaville? We didn’t! Paradise would have been better had we been able to enjoy a beer with our lunch. Lol. No matter, we didn't have much time. We sat down to lunch at 11am and had to check out of RPR by noon.....We walked, no, make that jogged back to our resort and made it with just minutes to go before we had to check out. Fortunately we had already packed our things so we high-tailed it up to the room, grabbed our bags, and did the online check out. I cut some fresh moleskin as my left heel had developed a beautiful blister.

We headed to the front desk and needed transportation to POR, not realizing what we were in store for.
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:16 PM   #13
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So when I left off we were leaving Royal Pacific Resort and were heading to our WDW portion of our vacation. I had researched that a taxi was going to cost us $36 but apparently the taxis at RPR were $45. I don't know how this slipped by me. I know it's only $9 difference but gosh, I hate it when things don't go exactly as planned! It was disappointing but I wasn’t in the mood to argue. We wanted to get to WDW so we decided to just pay what they were asking. We were at POR 20 minutes later.

This makes me wonder what people do that go to both parks, meaning Universal/IOA and WDW. I much prefer the free ride to/from the Orlando airport via DME but unless we split the WDW portion mid-stay, we either miss the ride from the airport or the ride to the airport. It would be easier if we didn't love Harry Potter!

So, I digress........continuing with the report-

This was a welcoming site:



And the garlands and the lobby were pretty too:



and strangely enough, for a sunday afternoon it wasn't crowded at all! I was at the counter in a matter of minutes:



We had a little snafu at POR too! Because our first day was a room only reservation (the rest of our trip was part of the free dining deal) we knew we’d have to go to a Guest Relations desk for early ticket pick-up. We wanted to be able to go to the parks our first day there and since we had an 8 day park hopper we decided to skip going to the parks on our last day in lieu of going our first day. I had been told that because both of our reservations were at POR (meaning we weren’t changing resorts) that the front desk at POR would be able to issue our park tickets for that first day. Our CM at the counter said that no, she wouldn’t be able to do that and that we’d have to go to Guest Relations. Also, our room wasn’t ready either…….no biggie. We had them hold our bags and headed to DTD.

It had to have been close to 2pm at this point and my only concern was that we needed to be at DHS as this evening was probably our only time to see the Osbourne Lights when they first turned them on. I'd seen this before but hubby has not so it was something I wanted him to see. We took the ferry to DTD from POR....this is such a great way to get around. Very relaxing. On the way to the ferry I snapped some pictures of the resort:



The Riverside Mill. We walked through this several times on our way back to our room on many an evening but only ONCE did we fill our refillable cups here!




Now one of the things Steve thought was awesome about POR was the hammocks. Apparently they are more difficult to maneuver than they look because he darn near flipped the thing over.....what I wouldn't do for a video of this.....



Our building in Alligator Bayou.


Inside the food court area (this was quite loud most of the time):

And tree inside the mill:


So we're finally at the ferry:





We pass Port Orleans French Quarter on the way to DTD:



I see land!


The water ferry was a nice ride. Guest RElations wasn’t too far of a walk. The line at Guest Services moved a little slow but finally we got to the front of the line only to learn that indeed POR could have handled this for us, AND their machine couldn’t print our tickets so we’d have to walk over to the West Side Guest Relations to get our tickets.

This is the line at Guest Services....


Again, tired feet and I wanted a drink! We finally made it over to the West Side, got our tickets, then waited 25 minutes for a boat back to POR. While we were waiting, we got the text that our room, #1812 was ready. Funny…..one of our attraction pictures at WWoHP was #1812. I hoped that that reference to the War of 1812 wasn’t going to have anything to do with our room situation!

These are a few pics from DTD:


and Lego store:

and I thought this looked like fun:


I noticed this on the ride back to POR:

The mansions:


Would we get our luggage in time to make it to the turning on of the Osbourne Lights? More of this and of our room in the Alligator Bayou in next post.
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:57 PM   #14
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We got back to our room, finally, with tickets in hand and I called bell services to bring us our bags. This was at 3:45 now and we really wanted to get to the parks. In the meantime, let's look at our room!

We had a corner King room....it was only the two of us so I figured having one less bed would give us more wiggle room....not that we do a lot of wiggling.

The trundle beds were replaced with these cute murphy beds-and when not in use they make for a nice bench area:


Sink area, nice to have double sinks and I love the washboard in the front. Underneath the sinks provided a nice space for storage too.:


A towel decoration awaited us in our room:


And people were wondering about the size of the murphy bed....my hubby is 6'1" and around 230 lb. and while he wouldn't be comfortable sleeping here all night, it was much bigger than I expected:


So now at 3:45, when I called for our luggage to be delivered to the room I was told our bags would be there in 5 minutes&&..so at 4:05 I decided that had been a long 5 minutes! Our building is one of the first few buildings in the AB, which is right at the front of the resort..... I called again and Mikey had no idea why our bags werent at our room&&he assigned another person to investigate. He called me back at 4:17 and said our luggage was on its way. Finally, at 4:30 we had our bags. That was a little frustrating! No time to waste on frustrations&..we wanted to get to DHS ASAP! We go to the bus area and watched two Magic Kingdom busses come through&&finally, a DHS bus arrives and we head out. They picked up at the main bus stop first, then headed to the west, north, and finally east depot. At 4:46 we were on the road to DHS. We got there pretty quickly because our resort is fairly close.....prob right before 5pm and this guy greeted us once inside the park:


I was a woman on a mission and I had a lot of cupcakes to eat so we headed to the Writer's Stop at DHS, convenient because that is where the Osbourne Lights are. Oh, I forgot to mention our bus ride to DHS. There were only a few of us on the bus&&we were sitting at the front and the layout of this bus had two rows of seats facing each other. A couple sits across from us. The gal was practically lying on top of the guy. She had her hair wrapped up in a towel and when they entered the bus and she had a towel wrapped around her body like she had just gotten out of the shower. I didnt want to stare at their pda so I tried concentrating on the fact that we were going to see the Osbourne Lights&.anyway, I look up just as we are arriving at DHS and her towel is gone. When did she get dressed? Lol&&.and dang, they were as old or older than we were! I couldnt imagine making out with my husband on public transportation, let alone a Disney vacation. Anyway, we arrived at DHS at 4:57 and like I mentioned, we headed to where the Osbourne Lights were going to start and grabbed a cupcake and brownie. Oh, we got a cappuccino too! Perfect since it was a little chilly out.



And look at this beauty:


We had our treats and our beverages.....people were starting to line up along the streets so we parked it right on the curb in front of Writer's Stop. It proved to be a real traffic nightmare though, so we eased over just a bit, not wanting to lose our prime viewing spot. Here's the street view:


What is this I see? A man with a microphone and a truck coming down the street:


&.Mulch, Sweat, and Shears, these guys were fun, very good, comical, talented folks:



....and when they were done with their show, it was time!
We were there for the lights to be turned on. Beautiful, tear-jerking, amazing! Music, lights, awesomeness....and you are totally immersed in the whole thing.

I took lots of pictures:





A not so hidden Mickey:


And this is where we stood:


Golly, I told you I took lots of pictures:


See a few more hidden Mickey's?


Here's a close up:




Oops, at my 25 image limit......more to follow in next post!
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Old 11-03-2013, 05:27 PM   #15
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So now we're walking down the street.....the area is big with lots of nooks and crannies:

My favorite:


Here's us:


And I really needed this guy:

Just a warning.....eat the popcorn from here and don't forget and leave it inside after you get home from vacation........

So this is our first real experience with WDW, next we head over to Fantasmic. We have never seen Fantasmic in all the times we've been to WDW.....

We realize it's a little early for Fantasmic so we thought we'd squeeze in:


On our way we did Voyage of the Little Mermaid, which was a very cute smallish production.







AFter Little Mermaid we tried to make our way over to the Fantasmic area. In my opinion it was very unorganized. There wasn't really any clear lines, everyone just crowded around in areas that people were trying to walk through......lots of people were trying to get to this:



We waited for Fantasmic from 7:25 until they let us in at 7:35. I can’t believe those times because it really seemed like it was a lot longer. I must have that written down wrong!

Once inside we just found a nice spot towards the center and sat on the benches. This guy came out and the crowd went wild......












I loved Fantasmic, so glad we were finally able to enjoy it! We were out of there in time to make our 9pm dinner reservations at 50’s Prime Time Café. I love this restaurant.....Steve's never been so I knew he'd get a kick out it. Even it was decorated for the holidays!



The menu:


We got a peanut and butter shake, an order of onion rings, and split the Mama’s Sampler plate. We will have the DDP once our vacation package starts but that isn’t until the next day so this meal is OOP, besides, it was so late we hated to eat so much....strangely enough our last meal was at Margaritaville more than 9 hours ago!

Onion Rings:


Peanut butter and Jelly shake (which was delicious)!


and a really crummy picture of our entree, half eaten, lol!


We're very full, and very tired.....DHS tree at night:


We were back to POR by 10:30pm. I was very tired but I knew I wanted to decorate our room a bit and put up the tree that I had ordered from Walmart dot com. Those packages were brought to us sometime while we were waiting for our luggage to arrive earlier. I made ornaments at home to decorate the tree so I carefully unwrapped all of those, hung lights on both of our windows (we had a lovely corner king room), put the tree together, and fell fast asleep.



Tomorrow it's an early morning.....Chef Mickey's!
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