Brenda & Roger

Archive for February, 2014|Monthly archive page

Say Good Bye!! to WDW

In Dreams Come True on February 7, 2014 at 10:54 pm

Today was our last day.. ūüė¶

It is raining, temps about 55.  I had decided sometime in the middle of the night, that I would wear my jeans & long sleeve shirt & bring sweatshirt!!  Roger thought that was a good idea.

We had decided to have breakfast at Kouzzina Kat Cora’s restaurant. ¬†We boarded a Hollywood Studios (HS) bus, planning on walking from HS to the restaurant. ¬†We were the only ones on the bus. ¬†He asked us if we were going to a Character Breakfast, we answered no, headed to BoardWalk to Kouzzina’s. ¬†He said he would be happy to drop us off at BoardWalk Villas!!! ¬†That was very good news, even though we would be very early for our reservation. ¬†We arrived and they were happy to seat us right away!!

A nice breakfast, maitre'd was kind enough to offer to take our photo!!

A nice breakfast, maitre’d was kind enough to offer to take our photo!!

From there, we did walk to HS.  It was cool & rainy, very glad we had thrown the ponchos in the backpack.  My Red Sox disposable poncho, must be about 20 years old!!  It still looks new!

We watched the Little Mermaid live theater show, then to our FastPass for Toy Story Mania.  Roger got high score in our vehicle!!

People were wearing wool coats, hats, parkas.

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home now… already planning our next big adventure!!!

Magic Kingdom was Magical!!

In Dreams Come True on February 6, 2014 at 5:25 pm

We really arrived early today!! ¬†It was still dark and as you can see… we were at Magic Kingdom for an 8 am open.

Early morning @ Magic Kingdom.  I think we may have even arrived earlier than the Cast Members!!!

Early morning @ Magic Kingdom. I think we may have even arrived earlier than the Cast Members!!!

7 am... Roger likes to keep me happy... first in line!!!

7 am… Roger likes to keep me happy… first in line!!!

We ARE READY!!!

We ARE READY!!!

Even as early as we were… we were NOT the first to arrive!! ¬†there were other hearty souls as well.

Upon entering Main Street, USA, we stopped at the bakery/Starbucks for a couple of breakfast sandwiches to eat AFTER completing Buzz Lightyear Astroblaster!!! ¬†Our first time through, Roger won big time, around 500,000 points. ¬†The second time I maxed out at 999,999 and rested the balance of the course. ¬†Our third ride through, Roger won again, which makes him Champ this time…. wait till next time!!IMG_0561

Roger won this round, we both decided to go "jazz hands."!!!

Roger won this round, we both decided to go “jazz hands.”!!!

Enjoyed a fine lunch at Liberty Tree Tavern… as always. ¬†Roger had what was called a BLT, but it was roast pork w/ LT!! and I had a Colony Salad with apples, pecans, lettuce of course & hot grilled chicken.. both were yummy!!

Of course there were other events we enjoyed as well. ¬†Before we left for the day we wanted to go to the Laugh Floor. ¬†Both of us really enjoy that… ¬†well, you’ll never guess!!… ¬†Roger, again… this was the 4th time, was “That Guy”! ¬†he must have a face that just yells… ¬†THAT GUY!!! ¬†When we were leaving, someone said to him “I think I remember you being That Guy before!!!

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This guy was so funny… apparently speaking very little ¬†English. ¬†When the Monster Comic asked him to think of a number between 7 and 732, he thinks for a moment and says out loud..”5.” ¬†The Monster dropped his mouth & answered” WOW, you were thinking really loud. ¬†Let’s try that again. ¬†Think of a number between 7 and 732.” ¬†Again the guy thinks and says out loud, “2”. ¬†The Monster looked behind himself & said (as if speaking to someone backstage) “now what do I do?” ¬†It was hilarious…

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Yesterday, I forgot to tell you… you know we ride these large Jeep vehicles, holds 36-40 people… well this is how they begin their life towards being a vehicle carrying site seeing people..

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!!!  did you laugh???

starting to pack things up tonight. ¬†Tomorrow morning we’ll drop off our luggage… we’ve learned since our last trip, to bring some clothes in a carryon bag in case we get stranded again, we won’t have to buy more stuff we already have!! ¬†Then we’ll be jump onto a Hollywood Studios bus, walk over to The Boardwalk for breakfast, then walk back to Hollywood Studios & enjoy a half day or so before we’ll come back to Animal Kingdom Lodge to board a Magical Disney Express bus back to Orlando Airport!!

Wild Things seen at Animal Kingdom Park!!!

In Dreams Come True on February 5, 2014 at 6:11 pm

Today was Extra Magic Hours @ Animal Kingdom beginning @ 8 am. ¬†We were at the bus stop @ 6:50!!! ¬†yes, you heard me correct; however, the bus did not arrive until almost 7:20! which of course means we were not first in line!! ¬†Oh well… ¬† Upon entry we headed to Kilamanjaro Safari, got to have the very back seat as requested… had an excellent driver/guide, a great sense of humor and made it as exciting as it was his first tour. ¬†He was great. ¬†We ended our ride & decided to go through again!!

The leaves are always best the higher up you go!!

On our second ride, it was almost a private tour!!

Our Jeep was almost empty!! except for us & the family up front.

Our Jeep was almost empty!! except for us & the family up front.

This is one of the more wilder creatures I saw….. !!!

This is one of the more dangerous Wild Things!!  believe me

This is one of the more dangerous Wild Things!! believe me

THEN… we did some shopping & used our Fast Pass for Kilamanjaro Safari!! ¬†YUP, our third time. ¬†and I gotta tell you, each time we went we saw some different animals!! ¬†Here’s a whole family of giraffes…

Giraffe Family watching us out the corner of their eyes!!  they are probably wondering why we don't just move on & leave them alone!!

Giraffe Family watching us out the corner of their eyes!! they are probably wondering why we don’t just move on & leave them alone!!

Nemo The Musical is always the highlight of our day at Animal Kingdom. ¬†Festival of the Lion King is closed until summer, they’re being moved over in Africa (which makes sense) and we hear there is something being built having to do with Avatar. ¬†We’ll see.

We went shopping again in DownTown Disney… had to get some must haves!! ¬†The predicted thunderstorms held off. ¬†We boarded the bus; our bus driver was most informative, giving us pieces of Disney trivia & info. ¬†Gave us some info about the Down Town Disney area going over a huge expansion and name changed to something like Disney Springs… Quite an undertaking; all the preparations & equipment take up a lot of the parking lots, which doesn’t bother us since we only ride the buses.

We also learned there are currently 150 miles of single lane roads on the 50 square miles of Walt Disney World (of which 1/3 has been developed), and 300 miles if you include the double lane roads. Cruising those roads are 365 buses piloted by 1,200 drivers. The goal is to build the fleet to 500 buses with 2,000 drivers. One holdup is that the company building the buses can only produce one bus per month!

Tomorrow Magic Kingdom, Extra Magic Hours beginning @ 8 am!!! ¬†We already have our Fast Passes & a lunch reservation…

Toy Story Mania!!! learned hints

In Dreams Come True on February 4, 2014 at 6:53 pm

Love those Magic Bands, selected our Fast Passes weeks ago, we didn’t have to wait in any lines for them.. very cool.

Roger likes to keep me happy!! ¬†so we made it to Hollywood Studios this morning — first let me tell you, we were not the first ones there! ¬†but we were first in line!!!

Hooray!!!  1st in Line!!!

Hooray!!! 1st in Line!!!

There are people in the park, as you can see behind me, they have Character Breakfast reservations, I saw kids still asleep!!!

We got talking to Lynda, the Cast Member at our entry point, and learned a lot of what got her here. ¬†She was, I would say, around our age. ¬†She has been a seasonal Cast Member and as of next week she will be full time with benefits. ¬†She’s from Michigan and goes home twice a year to visit her granddaughter and once the child’s mother & father get vacations at the same time, they will visit Florida…

Lynda also educated us on Tomorrow Land’s Terrace Fireworks Dessert Party as a unique (dessert buffet) spot to watch the closing fireworks and Cinderella Castle light show. We plan to check this out on future trips!

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Now, when we did get into the park, you know we were heading straight for Toy Story Mania. ¬†Roger has trained months for this sprint!! and sprint he did… ¬†we made it through, got fair scores, came out and jumped right back in line.

Right in front of us was a young couple (both Roger & I remember seeing them our first time through). ¬†The guy got highest in vehicle in the first round! ¬†They are from Oregon, but only come to Disney World, because Disneyland is pretty much done in one day… I didn’t know that. ¬†They were kind enough to give us some hints, we listened intently. ¬†Once we got into our vehicle & began, I couldn’t remember any of those hints. ¬†It’s too difficult to look for new stuff while trying to either break plates, shoot darts, or toss hoops to see the new things we should be looking for!!! ¬†Though we did manage to empty the rocket and get a new level! Anyway, we did pretty good, and our new friends were in back of our vehicle, She won this time & got most in vehicle and highest for the hour.

We attended the Animation Academy, and drew Minnie Mouse and then Donald Duck (“the original angry bird”). I was able to correctly answer the trivia question (“What is Donald’s middle name?”) and so won the artists drawing of Donald!

We got properly sassed by our waiter at the 50’s Prime Time Cafe. I had Caesar Salad but asked for oil and vinegar instead of Caesar dressing. The waiter said, “Then it’s NOT a Caesar salad.” Roger says the same thing, but I did get my special request.

We caught the 3:00 PM show of Beauty and the Beast, then capped the day at the park with chocolate soft serve “ice cream of extinction”¬†from Gertie’s, a tribute to Gertie the dinosaur, one of the earliest animated cartoons.

I was still eating my ice cream cone when the Animal Kingdom Lodge bus pulled up, but I was able to finish before we actually boarded.

Another perfect timing day!

Tomorrow, early magic hours (really! It’s true) at Animal Kingdom.

EPCOT… extra magic hours… NOT

In Dreams Come True on February 3, 2014 at 7:16 pm

I know I told you yesterday, we were headed out early… well, I double checked & ¬†EPCOT did not have early hours.IMG_0298

Of course we did have plenty of time to get to EPCOT, except the bus was VERY long coming.

Therefore, we were NOT at the “head of the line” to enter the park. Roger assured Brenda that it would be fine, and pointed out that there were many more people behind us than in front of us, but, well, it’s not the same as being first in line!

Since we were just here in December, and we’ve been here a few times before, we knew exactly what we wanted to do. Rush to Soarin’! Well, Brenda was rushing, Roger was, you know, Roger.

47 Thanks for Soarin With Us

We had a 9:10 FastPass, and learned that now, all FastPasses must be prescheduled. Brenda had set up our FastPasses through My Disney Experience app (oh, yeah, we do apps now). People who were not in the know were jammed up at the new “FastPass+” Kiosks used to distribute FastPasses. Brenda’s work linked all our FastPasses to our Magic Band, so all we have to do is press “Mickey to Mickey,” and our FastPasses are recognized.

BUT, we skipped using our FastPass and went right in the Stand By line, and quickly moved to a Soarin’ “flight.” We didn’t even need to ask the first row (so there are no feet dangling in our top view). ¬†We enjoyed the fragrances of the pine forest, dodged the golf ball with the hidden Mickey, craved oranges after smelling the groves, and Roger flinched (again!) at the last firework blast!

THEN, we went right back to the FastPass lane, and did it all over again!

Next we rode through the greenhouses and aqua farming in Living with the Land. Off to our 10:10 FastPass at Finding Nemo in The Seas. We found him! NEMO!

Followed that with a shopping trip to MouseGears, and Brenda finally scored the socks she’s been looking for. Mission accomplished!

Our final FastPass was 11:10 at Spaceship Earth. As we entered, it started raining hard, a major cloud burst. We saw our future–we’re skinny and healthy (Brenda’s already lost a lot of pounds, and Roger’s trimmed some too!). And by the time we were back from the future, the rain had stopped, and the sun was shining bright.

The sun rises on Spaceship Earth

The sun rises on Spaceship Earth

We ambled over to France in World Showcase. We had a 1:10 reservation at Chefs des France, but arrived at noon and were immediately seated. Roger enjoyed another bowl of French onion soup, while Brenda stuck with Crocque Monsieur, and Roger got a crepe. We both brought half home! Then we went to the French Patisserie to get some desserts for later.

Concluded the activities at EPCOT with a double dose of Voices of Liberty. We saw some familiar faces, and some new ones. The second show’s conclusion was one of the best performances ever–of all the many we’ve seen!

On our way out, we got a couple of ice cream cones, and researched our future purchase of Annual Passes. Because, well, we just love coming back to Walt Disney World!

Oh, and when we got to the bus pickup area, the bus pulled up seconds later, and we arrived back to our resort.

So, despite the miscue on timing to begin our day, the entire day’s adventures flowed smoothly, and we ended up having an efficient, excellent, EPCOT experience!

Super Bowl?? What? Disney World!!!!

In Dreams Come True on February 2, 2014 at 9:02 pm

Here we are… Orlando, Florida, Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom Resort, Jambo House!! ¬†We had a wonderful trip on the way to our arrival!! ¬†Thanks to Brandon & Rebecca for arranging for us to stay at the Fairfield Inn in Manchester Saturday night… ¬†it was great, not to have to worry about “weather” on Sunday morning…

We arrived at Jambo House, checked in, we had brought our “Florida” clothes in a separate bag. ¬†While changing, received a text our room was ready!! ¬†YAY!! ¬† Headed to Down Town Disney. ¬†We found out “Saving Mr. Banks” was playing at the AMC Theater (located in the West Side end of DTD). ¬†It was fabulous… ¬†we loved it. ¬†I know I cried plenty (and I think Roger was choking up too). ¬†Tom Hanks played a great Walt Disney. ¬†I would see it again. ¬†When we get home, I want to watch Mary Poppins again, now from a different perspective.

Tomorrow morning we’re headed to EPCOT, early magic hours begin at 8 am… ¬†Good night.

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