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Photo TR: 3rd Times a Charm

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Upon exiting Exposition Hall we saw Daisy immediately to our left. Only a few people in line, so we jumped in. Daisy is one of Claire’s most favorite characters. Last trip I don’t think we could’ve gone home if we didn’t find her.





After Daisy we headed to the circle there at the entrance where we saw Chip and Dale and Pluto signing. Since we had already seen Pluto, and his line was long, we skipped him and went directly to Chip and Dales line.

It was close to 3 at this point. I was really happy with how fast everything went. I was worried BBB would run much later and actually figured we wouldn’t even get to Exposition Hall till after 3.

I also kept in contact with Skip and he said he was done with his ride along and was making his way over to the park.


When we got close to Chip and Dale the “Pre”parade” band was coming through. They all started Dancing and Pluto was totally jamming! That dog can dance!

Chip and Dale danced with Claire to the music. They twirled her around and all that fun stuff. She was having a good time.

















While in line for Chip and Dale I noticed that Pinocchio was out across the street in his own little area. I told Claire if Skip wasn’t here by the time we were done with Chip and Dale we would go see him too.

So we finished up with Chip and Dale with me jumping in for one final shot with the photopass photographer and ran over to Pinocchio.

As we got close I noticed only 1 person finishing up with him and the line looked closed. I asked the CM as we were jogging up if the line was closed, and she just hollered back to the other CM, “We’ve got one more, a “princess” is here to see Pinocchio”. SCORE! So we went back with no wait and met with him. He was really great with Claire. Claire wasn’t too sure who he was and I was trying to explain it to her while waiting for Chip and Dale, but I’m pretty sure she has never seen the movie, even though we own it on VHS.


She kept touching his nose, and it was so cute. I tried to get a picture of her doing it, but she pulled it back so fast I never could get her touching it. The Photopass person tried to as well, and we both laughed because we just weren’t quick enough.










Claire was super excited after seeing him. She said that he kept going “AH-Choo” when she would touch his nose. She said she wanted to see the movie when we got home….which I got out, but she has yet to watch it.


Like I said before, Skip and I kept in contact, and he kept saying he was almost there, but we would get done with our meets and he still wasn’t there. I guess the bus had problems and would raise back up after it lowered down to get a wheel chair on. So it took awhile for them to get if fixed.


So Claire and I headed over by Tony’s to kill some time. We walked by the Goofy statue, so I had her stop and took some pictures.




When we started walking away a lady told Claire how beautiful she was (several had) and she was just not grateful and scowled and said NO! So embarrassing!!!! I had to give her a talk and tell her how impolite she was. And I threatened no Wonderland Tea Party (something she couldn’t wait to do) if she kept it up. Claire told me she was sorry, but she is just so tired. (something she never admits) We walked over to the smoking section and that lady was there. So I apologized again and told her about Claire’s tired comment. It’s rare when kid admits they are tired.


We then decided to wait for Skip up front under the train station. As we walked by the Goofy statue a photopass photographer was there now, so I stopped and had Claire take some more shots with the Statue. I think mine were cuter though, because she was looking at the statute when I did them.






FINALLY Skip arrived. We walked over to Exposition hall and there was a different photographer there now. We told her that we wanted Father/Daughter pictures and she seemed confused. She asked if we bought the package, and I told her no, we did buy the CD though, and just wanted some pictures of Claire and her Dad together. She almost acted like she wasn’t going to do it,... but she did. She only took a few, in the same pose and then brought me in and we did a few family shots. She said she just wasn’t too creative with poses, and she wasn’t. It made me wonder why she was put there if she couldn’t think up poses to do. Oh well, they came out decent enough, and I was happy.


As we walked out the parade was making its way to the front. I asked Claire if she wanted to watch, and she replied, she’d rather go swimming. I told her not until after we ate, which was in another hour or so. She then said she was tired of parades and didn’t want to watch anymore. But then she kept staring at it, so we went up to the curbside and she watched the whole thing. AND she was excited and happy with it. Belle waved and blew her a kiss, so that made her very happy.

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The parade was “Celebrate your Dreams come True”


Here is one character I don’t think I’ve EVER seen before. It’s Snow White and her “Prince”. For the life of me I don’t remember his name or even if he has one. I think he is just "the prince".






Skip loved watching this guy and told me to take a bunch of pictures of him. He thinks he looks like this guy we know. He SORT OF does, but not a lot. I had to print it out though so Skip could show his friends. He says this guy now has a side job at Disney. He’ such a dork at times.









And Claire’s favorite….BELLE!

Belle waved and blew kisses to Claire. I think she recognized that Claire was wearing a “Belle” dress.






And her other Favorite! Ariel!

We had a hard time getting a picture of her. She was doping motions and most have her hands in front of her face.







It was close to 4 when the parade was over. Claire was still bugging us about swimming, so we told her after dinner she could go back and swim. Since dinner was at 4:40, we figured we wouldn’t be able to do any rides before hand and decided to head out the front of MK and go to the boat dock to catch the boat over to the Grand Floridian. We of course just missed the boat, so we had to wait for another one.


GF from the boat dock



Claire was getting a little bit of an attitude while we waited. I knew she was a bit tired, and it was very hot. And she loves to swim, so that was all that was on her mind at the moment. The boat finally came and she relaxed a bit more and enjoyed the ride over. We then kind of dragged our heels as we made our way towards 1900 Park Fare. We had time, so we were in no hurry.



We walked in the back and Skip decided to go potty, so Claire took a seat and I tried to get a picture of her. Not much luck of getting a nice one. She was fidgety and kept putting her wand in her face.





After Skip came out, we then headed off to 1900 Park Fare and checked in.



We had a little while yet, so we went and parked our stroller and saw this really cute topiary. Of course the sun wouldn’t allow me to take a nice picture.



After dropping off the stroller,we went out front and had a seat for a few minutes.



We saw all these neat old cars/buggies so I took some pictures of them.






And the ashtrays were so cool. I went to take a picture of one, and Claire saw it and thought it was just sand and smashed her hands it. (ICK) So I took one of this one, which wasn't as perfect or clean as the other.



So after that, Claire and I went in to wash up, and Skop lagged behind. It was just after 4:30 now. I had told Skip to come right in because they opened at 4:30 and most likely we would be seated early. I went in to check and sure enough they were ready to seat us and Skip wasn’t in sight. GRRR! One of the things that irritates me, is when he goes off on his own and wanders. So I beeped him on the Nextel and told him to get his rear in there because we couldn’t be seated till he got there. And yes, I was in one of those “no reason to be” panicing states. LOL! I just have way to much adrenaline running through me when I am at Disney...and sometimes I go a little berserk!


We got seated and gave our drink orders and were told where the characters would be coming out at, and the “flow” they would go in.


I also forgot to mention that I had ordered a white chocolate glass slipper. We were supposed to remind them we had it ordered when we checked in, but they were on top of things and mentioned it before I could even say anything. I kind of ordered it as a special b-day treat for me (since this was supposed to be celebrating my 40th) but I had them write Princess Claire on it since it was her BBB day.


We reminded our server about the slipper too when we sat down. Our server was just OK. Not super attentive.

She did bring out a special placemat for me with signatures of several characters on it. Claire was jealous, once she realized it was there half way through the meal, and I then put it over at her spot for her to use.

I didn’t get any shots of it really, but here is one with food plates on top of it.



Claire anxiously watched the door for the characters to come out. Food wasn’t on her mind too much, but she did eat a little bit. Mostly a roll! And some watermelon and pizza.



Prince Charming came out first, and then a little later Cinderella came out. Then Prince Charming went to greet her. And they swirled a bit and then went back to meeting people.



Skip swore this was the same Cinderella from the night before at the castle. I wasn’t too sure. They looked similar, but I didn’t think so.


Finally it was Claire’s turn to meet Mr. Handsome. I really didn’t think he was that handsome. The one last trip was much better looking. The one last trip also was more friendly and interacted with Claire more. But Claire was very happy with this guy. Claire has a thing for Prince Charming.

Look at this blushing face she has when he approaches our table.







Cinderella was supposed to come to our table next, but Lady Tramaine stepped out of the "flow" and came over to our table.

I know she isn’t supposed to be “nice” but I was very unimpressed with this one. She wasn’t friendly at all.




Cinderella came over then. Her and Claire had quite the conversation. I heard her ask Claire how she liked the castle dinner. Wait!... Is this the same one from last night like Skip thought? : I asked her and she said yes. But the more I think about it, I think they have to say that to keep the illusion up. And she might’ve known that Claire was at the Castle because Claire had the wand from the castle on the table. But when I compare pictures, I really don’t think it is the same one.

Cinderella also forgot to sign Claire’s book, but I didn’t worry too much on that since we had gotten her signature the night before already.





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Anastasia was the next one to our table. I was laughing because she kept doing this cheesy smile and it is the same one that Claire does a lot!


I think she was the same one we saw last trip. She was pretty funny. Both stepsisters were. They would screech across the restaurant at each other. If any dish fell or rattled they would yell for Cinderella to go and clean it up.






I want to add that this is a buffet, and I was having a hard time going up to get food for fear of missing our photo ops, so I kept sending Skip to get food for me. The food was very good. They have this tomato/mozzarella salad that is just so tasty. And the strawberry soup was great. It was the first time I had that. Just like a smoothie. MMM! I had a couple of pieces of prime rib too. Skip said the prime rib cutter must’ve thought he was a pig because he went up a couple of times for me and himself. I did get to go up early on before the characters came out and I went up for dessert too. Can’t miss that.


The last character was Drizella. She was fun. Claire laughed with her and told her that her dad wanted to dance with her. She was so happy that she had a new Prince.




As we were doing our final shots with Drizella, the music started playing and she invited Claire out to dance with her. Claire followed and on the way Drizella invited more children.

See the lady in the green…Well this lady must have bionic powers. I followed Claire up, hoping to get some shots of her, and this lady was all of a sudden in front of me from out of no where. I swear it! And then it was next to impossible to get a shot of Claire. And this lady's one DD was very tall (at least I think it was hers), so when I tried to get Claire from another angle the tall girl was in the way! I just shot a few, but basically all you can see are pieces of Claire.




You can see a bit of her Pink fluff in these pictures.





That was FUN!






Now is when I kind of got annoyed with our server. So far she had brought drink refills when needed, but she didn’t check on us much and she didn’t do the bussing, it was some other guy that did that. We also needed more silverware, because Claire kept dropping it, and she seemed to disappear when we needed it.

While Claire was out dancing is when she brought the chocolate slipper, and she set it in my spot. I wanted to this to be special and here we come back to the table with it just sitting there. Mo “presentation” . There was also a happy birthday crown next to it. But this crown was even small for Claire’s head.

I was ticked off a bit because our surprise got muted, and Claire didn’t even realize it was at the table till I showed it to her.




Good side to this story...This thing was awesome. I am a big white chocolate fan and it was ooh, so good! I snatched one raspberry off it, which I love as well, and told Claire to try one. She ate the others in seconds. I guess she likes red raspberries too.

Skip and I made pigs of ourselves breaking apart that pretty shoe and eating every last bite. Yes we even scraped off the raspberry sauce.

Now I decided I can’t miss out on the desserts at the bar either. They had mini cheesecakes and mousse. And rice crispie treats. So I went back up and got a plateful. Claire snatched my rice crispie right away and I HAD to go get another.



In the mean time our waitress was still MIA. She finally brought the bill after we were completely done and just sitting there with an empty table. I handed her our KTTW card and Skip and Claire decided to go outside to wait for me, while I waited for the return of the card.


I met up with them and we head up to the monorail. We decide to take that back to MK ,and then catch the bus back to Pop to get Claire ready to swim. I was then going to come back and spend another hour or so at MK while they swam.


We got up to the monorail station and asked about riding in front. The guy said they had 3 already and the max was 4. The one lady in the group kindly said she would not go in front so that Skip and Claire could. (of course this is on longer allowed) I rode in the car behind them. We had just a short ride because MK is the next stop, but they enjoyed it. Claire thought it was super cool. But they didn’t get their “license” like I hear a lot of people do. I’m not sure if they were supposed to ask or not, but I know Skip never would’ve even heard of it before.


We caught the bus back to Pop and I got Claire dressed in her swimsuit. I also pinned up her hair to try and save it as best I could. They headed off to the pool and I headed back to the bus stop. MK closed at 8 that night, and I think I got back there a little after 7.


I decided now was my time to ride Space Mountain. I haven’t ridden it in a good ten years.


I got in line and I think the wait was supposed to be around 30-40 minutes. I noticed the immediate entrance is different than what I remembered it being before. Stairs weren't there last time I rode. This was before the newest refurbed, so I don't know what has been done differently since then.


I was standing next to some nice girls who did all 4 parks that day. We got to talking about different things and they told me they had hardly any waits all day.

I swear the line came to a standstill for quite some time. Of course we complained to each other. I noticed the people in front of me (who spoke little English) were holding FP’s. I let them know they could go in the other line and not have to wait. They thanked me, and decided to wait..for about 5 minutes.... then jumped the rail and went in the FP line. How sad that they didn’t know they didn’t have to wait in the standby line. But maybe they couldn’t read English very well.


I finally got up front and rode it. It was fun. I remember it used to be much darker, and someone told me that had added some light over the years because of some problem or something. It was rickety and I can see why it’s going to be refurbished, but still great fun.


As I walked outside after Space Mountain, Wishes had just started.

I took a few pictures, but I’m not very good at firework shots at all.











After Wishes, the mad dash for the front begins. I didn’t HAVE to get back, so I wandered around for quite awhile taking pictures and got a few photopass pictures as well. I really didn’t want to be in that mad rush.










I never noticed these guys before. I thought they were so cute :yay:







I just love the castle lit up. :lovestruc







I made my way up Main Street around 8:45. It was still pretty crowded and the shops were packed. Claire also called and told me she missed me, so I knew it was time to start heading back. But of course I kept taking pictures.







And a final few before I leave





I get back to the room to find Skip asleep and Claire bouncing around on the bed next to him.

I was a bit hungry and Claire said she was too, so we walked up towards the gift shop/food court. In the gift shop she picked out an Ariel figurine set. She had a ton of spending money, and with the toys on sale, she seemed to be able to get so much more. Happy with her purchase, we got a bowl of grapes for her and I got a turkey sandwich.

We went back to the room and started to eat a bit. I then realized we need to pick up our Hoop Dee Doo tickets for the next day, so Claire and I walked back up to Concierge Desk, which had JUST closed! UGH! It was a few minutes after 10 and they closed at 10 (with the final person still at the desk) So I made the mental note to go in the morning.


We went back to the room and Claire played a bit with her new purchase. We finished up our snack and got ready for bed.


Claire decided to sleep with me that night. (we took turns sleeping with her) I think we laid down about 11, but it took awhile for her to get the wiggles out.


And that’s the end of day 2!


As for following our plan, for the most part, things went well. We did some extra stuff that I hadn’t planned on, so that was nice. But then we never made it back to MK as a family after dinner, but that was fine too

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Day 3


March 10, Tuesday


The plans for the day!


Hollywood Studios

Hoop Dee Doo Review at 7:15

We had no definite plans of how early to get to HS. Just take a leisurely day there and do what we can. I wanted to ride Toy Story mania, but knew it would be crowded, so if we could snag a fast pass, we would do it, otherwise probably not.


I think I got up between 7 and 7:30. I showered and dried my hair in the bathroom with the door shut so I wouldn’t disturb the other 2. I went out and did a little walking and browsing in the gift shop.

I also started a load of laundry.


I went and got some pancakes and sausage for Claire and I to share. I got a V8 for me and a apple juice box for Claire to take along to the park. I also had my refillable mug filled with hot Chocolate in case Claire wanted some.


When I walked back into the room it was close to 8:30 and Claire opened her eyes. I was hoping she would sleep longer, but NOPE, she was up.


I told her she had a gift, and it took her a few minutes to realize it.




She got a little Cinderella fan, but the dang thing decided not to work. UGH!!! It worked when I wrapped it, but I think the batteries were dead because when we got home, I changed them and it worked.


Here’s the note she got.




We got up and Claire ate some breakfast. She wanted to swim first, since we wouldn’t most likely have time later today. We got her in her suit and out to the pool.




Skip went and got an omelet, but NO drink! With the dining plan you get TWO drinks with breakfast, but he got NONE! I was a little mad at him. He said he just filled his mug, but I told him he could’ve gotten lemonade and/or juice to take along to the park. He gave me the deer in the headlights look. This was our third trip using the dining plan, and he still aksed me several times how to use it.


After he came back, I went and finished up the laundry. One job done!


We finished up swimming and got dressed. Claire chose to wear her Ariel wedding dress that we had purchased last trip.


We arrived at Hollywood Studios about 11:20.



We kind of had the DUH! factor going. LOL! We weren’t sure what to do first. We totally had skipped this park in 2007 and last trip we came on Thursday (after being at WDW since Sunday) and that is the day that Claire had gotten sick. We had done a few things in the morning, and then split up while I took Claire back to the room. And later Skip came back, and I returned to HS for a short time.


So this was really our first time going at it with no limits.








After we snapped put of the Duhs…..I realized that we needed to find out when Beauty and the Beast started so we could see that. That was one thing Claire had asked to do. The show started at 12:15 I believe, so I suggested we go and look if any FP’s were left for Toy Story Mania.


I wasn’t 100% positive of where it was, but had a general idea. We walked up and YES they still had them. I was shocked. The return time was for 3:55. The CM standing there said it was really rare that any were left this late in the day (11:30ish) She said they are always gone much earlier.


As we started wandering aimlessly again, I saw the Narnia thing. I really didn’t know what it was, but Claire and I have seen both movies and really liked them. (we have since seen the 3rd one too)

We got in line for meeting Prince Caspian and seeing the show.




The line was short and the new got to meet Mr. hot stuff himself. He was really nice…and nice looking, if I do say so myself. (but NOT as cute as the Prince in the 2nd movie(












After Claire got some Photos with Prince Caspian, we started to walk out the door and then I quickly turned around and asked if I could get one with him (on the photopass). LOL! Skip just rolled his eyes and kept walking.




After that we walked outside to wait in line for the attraction. This was a big let down. It was a show that basically had clips from the movie. Nothing great at all. The room did look pretty cool though.


I am taking this picture pretty much at the exact same moment the CM is saying no flash photography till after the show. OOPS!




After the show you are allowed to go in a room that has props from the movie. I thought this would be so cool. I had read that there was one on another board, and the CM kept telling us about it through out our wait. This thing pretty much sucked. A very TINY area was all there was and hardly anything in there. A few costumes, but the room was soooooo small.

I can now say I’ve been there and done that, but won’t do it again. I may see the Prince again, but then I would duck out of line after that and go on my merry way. ( I think this is no longer now there)


We decided to head up to Beauty and the Beast then.


On the way there we saw some of the steetmosphere actors. (I’m sure I’m spelling that wrong.)




We basically got middle seats. That’s the best way to describe it. We were in the middle of the row and mid way up. We had a nice family behind us to talk to and they were interested in Claire and how much fun she was having. The one lady also directed me on how to find some characters.


The show itself was just OK, in my opinion. What I didn’t like was that it was the same ole story. Nothing new added. The singing and dancing was great and the show was done well, but I was hoping it was some add on to the story and not the actual story from the movie. Claire LOVED it though. She probably would’ve been happy to just watch it over and over.




The show finally starts and notice how she totally perks right up.









A weird thing happened as we were exiting the show. We were walking up the stairs to leave and a person at the top to our left was walking the same way we were going to turn. She looked right at me and asked how Claire liked the show. I told her she LOVED it and that was that.

Skip and I decided to turn and go the other way out instead. Then as we exited , I said “how the heck did she know Claire’s name?” And Skip said he thought I knew her.

I did not recognize her with the family who we talked with before the show, and she was coming from a different direction. So I wondered if it was one of my friends from antoher board. But no one has said anything yet to me. So it is STILL a mystery. My guess is that she might’ve been sitting a few rows behind and over and chose to go up the other side of the stairs and had just listened to our conversation.


Skip and I decide to separate and he was going to check out Rock N Rollercoaster, and I was going to go take Claire to characters.


Claire was a little cranky…..Disney does that to kids, they get over stimulated, and not enough sleep, and parents are dragging them everywhere…

So when he left, she started to cry a bit that she didn’t give him a kiss…..a quick beep on the Nextel fixed that.


So, ....once again we separated and Claire and I worked our way to the animation area.


I took this in route.



As Claire and I passed Playhouse Disney we saw the “Jo-Jo” was out. The line wasn’t too long, but Claire adamantly refused to see her. Oh well. I know she really doesn’t know her much so no big deal.

We walked over to the animation show. (the name is escaping me right now) I asked the CM before we enter the line if we can just go see characters and skip the show, he told us no, you had to see the show to get to them. OK… So we get in line and wait…..not too many people there….. and again I ask another CM if we could just walk through the theater, as we didn’t want to see the show, and he said no.

So ....we watch the show. It was OK, Claire seemed to actually enjoy it though, but did make several comments that she wanted to be riding rides. She was a little mad that Skip was off riding something and she wasn’t.


So after the show we “bolted” out of the theatre and see “Bolt” and Rhino signing autographs. We got in line just before they cut it off.




The line wasn’t too long, I think 15 minutes or so.

Claire has never seen the movie Bolt yet, but we have seen previews, so we were familiar with him. We had to ask someone in line who the “sidekick” was, and most kids didn’t know either. Finally one kid knew it. "Rhino"




This one cracks me up.








While in line one of the ladies told me that there was no need to go into the show to get to this room…GRRRRR on the CM’s….She said you could enter through the gallery and by pass all of that. That kind of made me a bit mad that I wasn’t told this by TWO CM’s.


OH well, nothing I could do now.

We also saw that Freezezone from the Incredibles was out, but the CM handler for Bolt told us he was going in and his line was closed, but Mr and Mrs Incredible would be out soon..


So after Bolt we got in line for Sorcerer Mickey, who was not going in any time soon.


Sorcerer Mickey’s line was kind of long, but moved fairly quickly. Skip called and said he was done with RNRC and was heading our way. He ended up going to a totally different spot.

Our turn with Mickey.














After Mickey we still had some time before The Incredibles came out, so Claire played with some games they had in there.


This was the top of the game she was playing and I thought it looked so cool.



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Once the Mr and Mrs. came out, I had Claire finish up her game and we headed over to their line. It wasn’t long at all. We’ve seen the movie before, but Claire didn’t really remember them all to well.

She went right up to them though and seemed to have a good time with them. She was very “awed” that Mr. Incredible didn’t write his name, but rather used a stamped. That was really cool in her eyes. Just the other day she pulled out her autograph book from this trip and was again amazed that he had stamped his name.




This picture is not good at all, but I had to post it because it is so funny. Claire really thought Mrs. Incredibles boots were that coolest thing ever and she goes and rubs her leg. NOWIf Skip would’ve tried that she would’ve slapped him! Heck, I would too!




I jumped in for a picture too. They didn’t have a photopass with these guys either.




After the Incredibles we headed out to find Skip. He was in Walt’s One mans dream thinking that is where we were.

Finally we connected after beeping each other over and over.


He decided to take Claire and I was going to go on Rock N Rollercoaster.

Claire started complaining that she wanted to ride rides. We asked if she wanted to see the Ariel show, and she said “no, I already met Ariel, I don’t need to see a show”.

They headed off to the Great Movie Ride with her complaining in tow.


I took off towards RNRC. I got to thinking, and then thought, .... “well she wants to ride rides, let’s show her a whopper” ... So I beeped Skip and told him that when he was done to bring her over and meet me by Tower of Terror and lets take her on that. I didn’t know if she would like it or not, but that is a thrill ride, so she couldn’t complain about that part.


Iff to RNRC I go!




I went into the Single Riders line. I found out later that Skip didn’t know there was one and went into the standby line, so his wait was a little longer, but he said it moved pretty fast.

This was the first time I have rode this ride. I was a little nervous. I used to love rollercoaster’s, but as I am getting older, they just aren’t as thrilling anymore, and I prefer the tame ones. Most of Disney’s are very tame.


I got on in about 10 minutes.

All I can say is WOW! That take off is really intense. I’m glad the whole ride isn’t like that, or I would wimp out. You go from zero to 60 in just a few seconds. WHEW!

The ride was great though. VERY short! Neat with the music playing in your ears. Definitely one to do again sometime. My older DD, Paige, would love it. When I took her when she was 7, we had to ride TOT over and over because she loved it so much. I think she ended up riding it 10 times in 1 day. She was also a big fan of test track and when you did that full out speed around the track she would scream "make it go faster”.


After RNRC, I beeped Skip and he was still on the Great Movie ride, so I stopped off and got a Mickey bar. YUM. I have to have one every year.


I started making my way back towards them for something to do.

I stopped off and got a photopass shot of me with TOT in the background.





We met about half way. They announced that the Block Party Bash was about to start. I asked Claire if she wanted to watch it first, and she said “NO, she’s seen enough parades”. Oh well.


So off to Tower of Terror. Again I was a little nervous. It had been 10 years since I rode it, and I had heard they made it more intense since then ,with more drops. I was more nervous for me than Claire.

The line was next to nothing. I had talked to a TOT CM while eating my Mickey Bar and he said it had been walk on almost the whole day so far. We had about a 5 minute wait till we went into the pre show. Love the Twilight Zones stuff.

We then went to get in line for our elevator. There was a girl about 10-12 in line with us just crying away. Her mom kept pointing to Claire and telling her if this little girl could ride it, she certainly could. I did tell her that it was Claire’s first time.


We then got seated. We were in the back row. The crying girl was in front of us, still crying. I had tried to make her feel better, but it just wasn’t going to happen. I told her if she could ride RNRC, which she did and loved, this was a piece of cake. I was kind of trying to convince myself too.



The ride begins! We go up and it does the whole Twilight Zone stuff. Fun, but a little creepy too. That was what I worried about with Claire, but I constantly told her that it was just pretend. I think she was getting sick of my saying that.

Then came the drop.












Not so bad at all.

Claire did fine and said it tickled her butt.

This was MUCH tamer than I remembered. In the old days…before the drop you could wait up to 5-10 seconds just sitting there waiting and you never knew. This time it dropped almost immediately. And it didn’t drop nearly as far as before. We did the whole length back then and several bunny hops and then the length a couple more times. The biggest drop was not bad, and the bunny hops were so tame.


Claire loved it and kept talking about it as we exited. We asked if she wanted to ride again, but she said no, she was hungry.

BTW...The crying little girl hated it and had a look of terror in the ride picture.


With Claire being hungry, we went off to find something to eat. The request was a hotdog…..of course.


Claire also commented on needing to go potty and she was hot. So we went to the potty and I asked if she wanted to change into a sundress to cool off and she said yes. She was still beautiful , but much more comfortable.


As we made our search for food, the block party bash was going on, and Claire seemed very interested. We stopped at the end near the Ants spot and watched it.








During part of the block party they invite kids out to dance with them and Claire was eager to join them. YAY!

One song was the Macarena (sp?) and the rest of the day she kept showing me how to do it.


You can pick my kid out easily. She’s the only one with PINK hair!





Here is the link to the video





After the party, panic mode was hitting Claire. She NEEDED a hot dog NOW!

We asked a CM near Hollywood & Vine (I think) and she directed us to backlot express, where she filled up and was very happy.

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This might be one of the most comprehensive TRs I've ever seen! Was the park empty? It seems like you did a lot between your 11:20 entrance to the park and your 3:55 return time.




It wasn't too bad at all. Of course TSM was packed all day, but we seemed to just be in luck that day. The standby for RNRC looked like kind of long to me, but Skip went through fairly fast. My plan that day was to try to do things a bit slower. I tend ot over plan...A LOT . And Claire gets grumpy with the lack of sleep, so I tried to just kind of go with the flow that day, and it seemed to work for the most part. The even gets a little less "magical"...and Claire wasn't the grumpy one either. I'll post that in a little bit.

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WW1 Flying Ace, I see you're a big fan of Cedar Point? Do you live in the area? We are about 1 1/2 hours or so away. When I was younger, we used to go all the time (I even had an annual pass one year). But now I am no longer into the big thrill rides. I think they outgrew my maximum limit! My older Daughter (she's 18), has taken my place and loves all the crazy rides now.

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After Claire ate, and Skip and I “helped” her finish it off, (whether she wanted our help or not) We headed off to the Lights, Motor, Action show. We passed by Star Tours and the wait was like 5 minutes, so we thought we would come back after the show and ride it too.




They were letting everyone in when we arrived. I swear you walk like a mile to get back there to the seats.


We had some time to wait before the show started. There was a family in front of us with a little girl who had just bought this Minnie Mouse set. We have several of these sets at home with the princesses, but not a Minnie Mouse one. It’s a little figure with several rubber dresses and shoes and other “junk” that’s easy to lose. Claire went nuts. She plays with these all the time and she HAD to have Minnie. So I asked the mom abiout it and she told me where to find them. I told Claire that it was up front, so on the way out we would get one. Well.... my one tracked mind little girl would NOT stop talking about it, and it did get old, FAST!


While waiting for the show I started figuring time in my head. We had a 7:15 ADR for Hoop Dee Doo Review, so I figured we had to leave HS no later than 6 to get over there.


We for sure wanted to ride Toy Story Mania since we had fastpasses for it. And by the time the LMA show got over it would be a little after 5. So I figured we’d have to skip Star Tours and head straight over to TSM after the show. Oh well, we’ll do it next trip....but little did I know it would be on t he list for refurbishment.


The show started finally.


I was not impressed with it at all. Skip loves it. He did see it last trip and insisted we see it this year.

The stunts were cool, but I could never get good pictures because they came as such a surprise. And there was a lot of down time, where they set up for the next stunt and explained what was going on, or what they did. I’m sure I am not the norm here, I think most people love this show, but for me once was enough.



This one is cool. The car is jumping backwards. It looks like it’s about to land, but actually it is just leaving the ramp. They do tell you how they do this later on.



And Herbie makes an appearance too. I always loved the Herbie movies as a kid.






And then the big Finale, which I basically missed with my camera.



The show is now over, so everyone makes the mad dash to get out. I start going towards some stairs at the end of the bleachers and Skip starts to cut back to go down another set and tells me to follow. I turn around and this lady gives me the most evil look, like “don’t even think about going that way and messing up the flow”. So I just keep going and yell back I’ll meet you on the outside. So with Claire in my hand we slowly go.

It was a long way. Again we have to walk forever to get out and people walk so slow. But I wasn’t the only impatient one. I was behind a scooter who was beeping constantly. It was funny, but extremely rude. And he had the typical “nasty” look those scooter people who beep have. Why do they always where a frown? And why do they think they are allowed to go faster than anyone else? I wanted to get out just as fast, but I wasn’t saying “beep beep”. I want to add I have no problems with people who need scooters. I just don't like when some think they have the right of way because they have a horn and the ability to ram your heals.

We eventually caught up with Skip. He had been waiting for us. His way was MUCH faster. I should’ve braved it.


Off to Toy Story Mania! The fastpass line was long too, but definitely much shorter than the standby.



Here are some shots while waiting in line.







We got to talking to the people in front of us in line. They had annual passes and lived nearby. They come to Disney at least once a week! WOW!


The ride was cool. Claire and Skip went together and I rode with the wife of the family we had been talking to. Since she has ridden it so many times, she explained to me what to do. It is similar to Buzz, but I like it better. But would not wait in the standby line for long periods of time for it.

Claire LOVED this ride a lot.

One nice thing is you can see where your ammunition is shooting, so it makes it easier to hit your targets.


After this ride we head up front to go to the store that sells the Minnie figure. .....and Nope! Claire never forgot, and never stopped talking about it. Skip was lagging behind and I thought he said he was going to stop and smoke. But I guess he told me to slow down or something. Anyways I said we’ll meet you up front and kept going. OOPS!


We had “lost” Skip while walking to the store to buy Claire’s figurine. I assumed he was stopping to smoke, because when he had said something to me, he was walking next to the smoking section.


So Claire and I go into the store and find the Minnie figure/dress pack, and also see other characters that she doesn’t have at home. So we bought the Tinkerbell one and a Prince one as well. She was so excited.

We walked outside and stood by the info board that tells you the wait times for rides, etc.

I saw a photopass guy, and so I made Claire put her bag in the back of the stroller and get a picture. This guy only took 1 picture. I thought that was pretty lame. You can see she isn't too happy.



Skip beeped me and asked where the heck we were. I told him. He kept saying he was in the same spot, but after finally doing some figuring, I realized he was by the entrance, not the same spot we were.

Now for some background before I go on….


While we were at Disney we were getting torrential rains at home. Our farm can flood somewhat and our basement floods easily too if it’s not watched. So Skip was in constant contact with his brother about the rains. His brother panics about everything. It’s super annoying. It’s like he wants Skip to drop everything and come back home every time we go away.

So Skip was slightly stressed with all this rain at home and his brother updating him constantly about what is flooding, etc. Also one of the guys who said he would be checking our basement for us, just disappeared, and wouldn’t answer his phone. My dad was checking it also, but if it started flooding, he would still need to get Skip’s brother to hook up the extra pump to pump the water outside.


Another thing was DH’s hip was hurting him bad. He gets this on and off, and they think it’s a pinched nerve. So he was going slow because of that. ....WE have since found out that his hip was bad and he had it replaced in Oct of 2009.....and it didn't work. It never adhered to the bone and it coroded inside and he had to have it replaced again this past Dec......He was mad at me constantly for walking too fast. But any other day of the year, he is always walking SUPER fast. I even tease him that he must’ve grown up in an Arabic country because I have to walk so many paces behind him.


So back to the report….

When we found him he was mad as heck at me. He said he wanted to stop and take a break, and I just kept zooming on ahead. I told him that I thought he was smoking, but there was no reasoning with him and that started his moody pouting bit.


We exited the park and found that Fort Wildernesses bus was way down the line at the end. UGH! So I push Claire along and Skip hobbles along behind us. At that point I was ticked at him then, too, so I just left him in the dust and went to the bus. He arrived several minutes after us. I have learned not to play into his moodiness and it's better if I walk away.


The bus stopped at Wilderness Lodge first and then to Fort Wilderness. It was kind of a long ride. Once we got to Fort Wilderness we had to wait for another bus to come and take us back into the campground to Pioneer Hall. It took awhile for the bus to come, and then it was quite the long haul back there. I didn’t think it was explained well which stops were which. Only if you were staying on property would you really know for sure where to get off. We did get it figured out and got off at the right stop and went to check in.



We had to make a quick potty stop for Claire first and then went to the long check in line.

We evidently walked passed a small vendor selling stuff and Claire had a mini melt down. She wanted some stupid light up Mickey sword. I told her not now, but maybe later or another day. She was being a brat. (which I know is my fault for pushing through each day) Skip walked up to us and asked what was going on, and I told him and he was disgusted that she wasn’t happy with the toys she just bought. (understandable) He was super grumpy about the money being spent, which I’m not sure why, since most of it was bought with gift cards or Claire’s spending money.

He walked away, and I was happy, because who wants TWO babies next to them.

We got checked in finally. I asked where we were to be seated and she told me first floor. OK! I didn’t care actually where we sat, but I wanted to know ahead of time.

I found Skip, sitting and pouting, and left Claire with him while I took a little walk.


On my walk around Fort Wilderness (right near Pioneer Hall) I found this armadillo digging. I don’t know a lot about armadillo’s so I wasn’t sure how close I could get. But this guy never looked up at me. He just kept going about his business. I didn’t want to use a flash though and scare him and have him attacking me.



I went back to show Skip and Claire the picture, and found them at the playground. He seemed in better spirits and Claire was too.





And this was near the playground



While she was playing, Skip disappeared and came back with the sword. That made one little girl very happy with her daddy. Yes! she has him wrapped around her finger.


It was then time to go in. We got seated in the back on the first floor. No seats are really bad here, so that was no big deal. We started in on the salad and cornbread that is on your table when you arrive. They took our drink orders…..beer for Skip and I, I think pop for Claire...

Then a manager comes over and tells us we’ve been seated at the wrong table and we were actually supposed to be upstairs. Now this is no big deal, BUT I know he was lying because I asked prior where our table was and was told first floor. I then see him go talk to another family and they said they didn’t mind going upstairs, and he said, “no, since you added an extra person, that table upstairs only seats 3, so we have to put you down here.” So basically he needs a 4 table and we were 3 at a 4 table. No big deal to move, but I wish he didn’t lie about it. : Just tell us they made a mistake, or one family added a person and needed the table.


Claire is confused by all this moving. But we do fine and move upstairs and a whole new table is set up for the other family and we get to start in on a whole new fresh bucket of salad and cornbread.

These seats actually might’ve been better too. Claire was against the railing and had a clear shot out to the stage. The down side was she had a wobbly chair, and I envisioned her flying over the side. So we got another chair for her and all was fine. She barely ate anything. She used to love salad. In fact last trip she ate almost a whole bucket herself. But this year only picked at the cornbread till the show started.

And then she became engrossed!


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Love the BBB Photos and description. KT is dying to do it, but when I remind her of the 'brushing hair aspect' she quickly changes her mind!


Claire hates me touching her hair. But I guess for the sacrifice of beauty she didn't complain once. I did see her make some funny faces though. I'm glad we did. I wanted to do it for our upcoming trip, but we have limited time at the parks since we are doing the cruise. I am thinking about possible getting a few braids in our hair on the ship though. Not sure how well she will like that. I think they pull a lot harder, but if she likes the style, she may endure it.

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The show started and it is so enjoyable. It’s hard not to have a good time here.




The characters came up stairs a lot too.



After a bit they take a break and the food arrives.

For the most part, I like the food here.


The show starts back up and they do a lot of singing and interaction with everyone.

Claire is trying to swing her napkin, but it just keeps wrapping around her arm.




They also noticed my birthday pin and when they were singing about celebrations, I was one of the lucky ones they sang to. And of course asked my age. The character “Claire” chatted a few minutes with my Claire too. It was the same one from last trip and they made good friends last trip because they have the same name. (Claire was wearing her hat with her name on it last trip). But this year was so much busier, so she didn’t have much time to chat. Claire was still happy.


Then it was dessert time. They brought a strawberry short cake to our table, actually two, and one had a candle on it for my b-day. It was good. Claire even ate some of this. Mostly the whip cream.


During the show, we noticed that every character had stopped at one of the tables upstairs. They would stand and talk to the people and oooh and aaah over the kids. To me it looked like two light skinned black guys or maybe Mexican and both had white wives. Skip noticed this too and he said it’s got to be a celebrity. I just couldn’t figure who it could be and if they were celebrities, why wouldn’t they pay for better seats up front?


Then Skip became convinced it was Tiger Woods. I couldn’t tell you much about him or what he looks like, but I was pretty sure it wasn’t him. First off, didn’t he run off with the nanny or something like that? This lady wasn’t looking like a young hot nanny. No offense to anyone, but she was a little chunky and not ugly, but nothing I would call gorgeous…which I ‘thought’ I had heard this “nanny” was. Again, I could be confusing it with some other celebrity.

I figured that either the girls were sister, or the guys were brothers. I didn’t take a picture though, because they were far away and it being pretty dark that it wouldn’t turn out. And I didn’t want to look really stupid either.

Atone point near the end of the show they have audience members partake in the show. And usually they pick a child for one part. Well these two little kids, who I assume are cousins OR according to Skip are Tiger Wood’s kids or nephew/niece….LOL….. were chosen to be the ones onstage. I DID get a picture of that.



As the show ends they bring out washboards and people go crazy making as much noise as possible along with the music




So the show is over. We head out the hall, use the bathroom and go to the buses. They have buses to take you back to the resorts, and we are told the one on the end is for Pop. We are one of the first on and sit down. Slowly it fills up. Then a wheelchair needs to come on, so they move a lot of people to standing and put on the wheelchair. Then it is getting really full. And standing room only.. and ANOTHER wheel chair comes, so they make people get off so they can load it on and smash all these people back on. The bus driver keeps telling everyone to move further back because there is more people to get on. I have NEVER seen a bus this full. Skip gave his seat up to lady with a child, Claire was on my lap. I mean ALL kids had to be on a lap, it was that full.

We seemed to be sitting there forever.

In the mean time, when we had walked out of the hall, Skip immediately beeped his brother who was going on and on about the flooding at home. I asked him if our basement is flooding…he didn’t answer…I asked again….he didn’t answer. I asked several times before he turned and barked at me and said he had things under control. Now all I asked was a simple yes or no question. I told him I just wanted to know because I could call my dad to help if needed, and he says “what the H is your dad going to do”. So I was MAD! And of course stupid tears start rolling out my eyes while we are sitting on this horrid, cramped bus.

All he had to do was answer a simple yes or no, not totally ignore me. Even though that bus was full, he never stopped beeping back and forth with his stupid brother. And even in the loud bus, everyone could hear his conversation.


SOOOO..... Finally the bus driver gets on, and you know what.. he announces the order of the stops..THER ARE FIVE OTHER RESORTS ON THIS BUS BESIDES POP What the heck are these people thinking? No wonder it was so crowded.

I think Pop was the second or third stop. We got off and Claire and I head for the room and ditched Skip. He went to the bar, I think.


Claire played with her new Minnie toy and then I got her to bed about 11.

Skip came back a little before that and didn’t say much. But of course I was giving him the silent treatment too.


His brother calls again a little after 11 and asks if Skip has access to radar. What an idiot. We are on vacation, so yeah ,we go look at radar all the time. They have this weather radar thing in the barn, so I guess he assumes it’s every where.

Skip tells him he has seen it on the weather channel though. But honestly, what can he do even if he has access to radar? We are hundreds of miles away.

At 3 AM the phone beeps again, with his brother going on again about the flooding and telling Skip what’s flooding. He has no respect that a child could be sleeping and get woken up from him. He has no kids and thank goodness he doesn’t.


That’s the end of Day 3.

For the most part we had a lot of fun. The end wasn’t so grand, but I never let that stop Claire and I from having fun.

We did a lot of fun things that day, and more than I expected to really. I really would love to go on a trip with out Skip sometime. Not that I don’t enjoy him with us for the most part…but this just isn’t all fun for him like it is for Claire and I. He is always so worried about what is happening at home. Mostly because his brother panics about everything. If we were at “world of tractor pulling "(that’s a made up place), he would be going non stop and leaving me in the dust.

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Day 4


Wed. March 11


The plans for the day.


We had breakfast ADR’s at Cape May for 10:50.Cpae May is in the Beach Club, which wasn’t to far from Pop, so we planned to drive rather than take a bus.


Wonderland Tea Party for Claire at 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian at 1:30


Animal Kingdom~ it was open later with EMH’s till 8.

My goal at AK was to see at least one of 2 shows, either Festival of the Lion King or Finding Nemo. If we did anything else, that was just whip cream on the pudding!


I think I woke up after 7, but I can’t remember exactly when. I showered and went out for the “walk” that was pretty much now routine. Fill up the mug, stop off at the smoking section and gossip, and take some pictures around Pop.





I haven’t really mentioned much about the weather, but it was in the mid 80’s every day.



Food court drinks



I’ll post more at the end of the report. I took a lot again this time too.


When I was walking back towards the room around 9:30, Skip was just coming out. He was still is his dreary mood. I did the nice smile and was pleasant, but the first words out of his mouth were “how do I get home if I need to today?” What a fun guy!

I told him he would have to fly into Detroit, because Allegiant didn’t fly out on Wed to Toledo. We could probably call one of our moms or ask at the desk about finding a flight. He said he was waiting to hear from home before he went forward on it.

So I went into the room and actually kind of packed up his suitcase a bit, and thought about what he should take home with him if he did leave early. We need to keep certain stuff with us, but if he was going early, then I was going to send some stuff back so Claire and I didn’t have to struggle with it all.

I didn’t do major packing, but more organizing, so it would be ready to throw in if needed.

Claire woke up while I was straightening up. She had another princess gift. It was a package of princess underwear and the note was from Alice.



As you can see, Claire’s hair did not make it well overnight.



I told her we had to wash it today and be “fresh” for Alice. She cried and cried. She wanted to be beautiful for Alice. I told her we could wash it and I had watched the FGIT do it, and I am sure I can redo it just like her. I actually think I did better, because I used more gel and it lasted for the rest of the week.

She was happy with it, and sat very still for me to do it too. AMAZING!


While waiting for Skip, Claire played with her new Tink figurines that she bought at HS. With in minutes Tinks head broke off. Of course there were more tears, but I told her I would take it with us and return it for a new one.


Skip came back into the room and said after talking to several people at home, he was just going to stay. The damage was done and the worst was over, so him going home wouldn’t really help any. Claire was happy. She had started crying when she heard he might leave. She loves her Daddy very much and it’s hard for her to be apart from him for very long.


We got ready for our breakfast at Cape May. We drove over because the Beach Club is about an 8 minute drive. Taking the bus would’ve taken 40 minutes or longer with transfers.


Going through the guarded gate they couldn’t find our name on the list. I swear this always happens to us. But finally they found it listed under my first name. I’m not sure why they would list it that way. I’m sure there are a zillion Jennifer’s out there.


We found the restaurant easily enough and got checked in.




We were really early, so we walked around a bit and I snapped pictures.






We went outside for a bit too, while we waited. I took this panoramic shot.



Look at this awesome waterslide





About 5 minutes before our scheduled time, we got buzzed. We went in and were seated.




We learn soon that our waitress isn’t too great. She got us each juice, and Claire milk. Told us where the characters would be coming from and kind of disappeared after that.

At one point I flagged her down and asked if I could get some milk. She never came back to ask if we wanted more juice, and I need a lot to drink with my meal. She brought me a small karaft (sp?) of milk and Skip and I shared it. As we were finishing up, she came over again and asked if anyone wanted juice. She only had enough juice her karaft to fill 1/3 of a glass. Skip declined, he was ready to head out at that point, but I took it.


So back to the meal.


I ran up quickly to the buffet and got Claire and I some food before Minnie came to our table.

She was playing peek a boo with another table and it was so cute.



Minnie must’ve needed a potty break then, because she went out of the room for a few minutes.


I was starting to eat when I felt something on the top of my head. I turned around to find Goofy there. He was kissing my head.





Minnie was right behind Goofy!





Look at this kid on the left. He is in the background in a lot of our pictures. And he is TRYING to be in them.



Donald immediately followed Minnie. I couldn’t believe how fast they were coming!






After Donald, we really pigged out. Well I did. Skip had been the whole time, and Claire ate like a bird.


When I finished up, I took Claire to find a potty. When we got back, Skip said the waitress had brought the bill and when she came back to take the card, she told him he needed to check which tip he wanted to leave. He told her no, he was paying cash. She seemed mad about that he said, and wondered if he did anything wrong. I told him no, that’s the way we always do it.

Skip decides to walk out to the lobby while we wait for the card, and he leaves me $5 to tip her. He was NOT impressed with her either. The meal was a little over $50, so 5 was not the appropriate amount. But I understood how frustrating it was to have to tip a sucky server.

She brought the card back, but the receipt with the suggested tip amount was gone. So I did some figuring in my head and left a total of $8. She was probably mad about that, but she really did suck. And she was making out with me, if it was Skip, she wouldn’t have gotten as much.


So Claire and I finish up gathering our stuff and I get a tap on my shoulder. It was Minnie AGAIN. The restaurant was emptying out fast and she had made the rounds again already. So we took a few more quick shots.




We then walked out to the lobby to find Skip. I thought this chair was cool and told Claire to sit on it so I could take her picture. This is how she does it. UGH! Such a lady!



We then headed out to the car and drove back to Pop. We walked Skip to the room, Claire and I grabbed the stroller and our bag and then headed to the bus stop. We were now on our way to one of the most anticipated activities. The Wonderland Tea Party! Claire was super excited about this.

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Great job so far! Love all the detail. It's nice to hear personal stories to go along with the pictures!


Thanks Brandy. I tend to go into too much detail at times. I am looking at becoming a Disney Exclusive Travel Agent right now, and I guess that is a good thing for that .

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Off to the Wonderland Tea party.

It is held at 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian. We bused to MK and then boated over to GF. I was told to get there about 1, but when we got there, no one was there to check us in. I noticed another lady and little girl walking in the area too. So we just roamed the lobby a bit till someone came. Of course the camera was out and ready!





About 1:15 two CM’s came out and we checked in. The girls that had gathered started to become instant friends. I talked to the CM’s a little bit, along with a grandmother of another girl. They seemed really nice and fun. They truly seemed to enjoy their job.

At 1:30 they gathered at the door and it was time to go in.



They got to go in and pick a seat. They also were allowed to bring in their autograph books. Good thing I remembered to pack it!


The tables were set up so cute.







The CM told them to take their napkin and put it on their lap.



And then they told them to put there hand in the air.



Now wave it and tell your parents goodbye!

I kept taking pictures on my way out and Claire said “mom, you need to go”






I don’t know if you know this or not, but parents CAN”T stay for the party. I was so sad I was missing out on what they would be doing and getting pictures of it. But I knew she would have fun.


I got her settled in and left. I decided to go upstairs to Mickey’s Mercantile and see if they had the tinkerbell figure to exchange. I walked around and spotted them! YAY! But my bag with broken tink was down in my stroller. So... I walked back to get it and as I approached I heard some banging.

When I walked near 1900 PF I see it is Alice and the Mad Hatter banging on the doors to the tea party. Then when the CM would open it they would run to another door and bang on that. They kept doing it and then finally they went in. You could hear the kids all laughing.




I was kind of mad at myself for leaving and missing some great shots. I only got these by just quickly lifting my camera and they were going so fast.


After the unexpected sighting of Mad Hatter and Alice, I picked up the Tink toy and went back upstairs to return it. It was a smooth exchange with no problems. I browsed a bit and kept myself from buying the cool light up Spinning Mickey toy that I have heard others talk about . It was super cute, but I didn’t want to get one without Claire there. (and we really didn't need it) I wandered in and out of some shops and took random pictures.







I then decided I was tired of taking pictures with the shopping bag (holding the tink toy) in my hand, so I went down to the stroller to put it in there.

AGAIN, I lucked out and got a great surprise!

The Mad Hatter had just opened the door and was marching out. At first I thought it must be time for him to leave, but NO! All the kids followed out too.





And her comes Claire, a little unsure, but giggling! And she has those dang fingers in her mouth. A new habit she has for some reason. UGH!




So of course the grandma that was waiting and I both grabbed our cameras and ran like wild paparazzi and followed them. I’m sure we had a crazed look on our faces.




And Alice brought up the rear.



Out through the lobby of the Grand Floridian.



I asked the guy CM if this normally happens. He didn’t say yes or no, but kind of made it sound like it doesn’t all the time. What he said was “well let me tell you the last time we came out the lobby the Mad Hatter jumped in the bird cage.” He said he was pretty crazy.



Look at this guys face. He is totally clueless as to what is going on. I’m sure he had a story to tell later.




The Mad Hatter was also being really loud and obnoxious. It was funny.


And look at the joy on my little girls face!






After the parade around the lobby, they went outside to the little court yard. The character handler stopped me as I was following (the grandma had already gone through) and asked me if I was with this party. I told her well yes, that my DD. She says well we really don’t want you taking pictures. UMMMMM TOOOO BAD!

Don’t tell me she wouldn’t be snapping pictures of her own DD if she was in the same position. I turned around and just went out another door and snapped away again.

The grandma was talking to a manager looking guy from GF and he was asking if she was enjoying herself. She went on and on how it was so neat to get these pictures and he said he was so glad that we got to see it. I’m going by what he said. I really should've took the Handlers name and reported her. She was not very magical.


So on to the outside pictures.






They then did individual pictures of them. The guy CM took their pictures on a point and shoot digital camera. I, of course, shot some of my own.






And this is the one they took.



Claire has a hidden Mickey on her cheek!

(it was a flyaway strand from the pink hair)



And then it was time to go back in.




After they went in, the grandma and I sat and started talking. She said that a family had come a few minutes after they had shut the doors to the party and just started banging on the doors. They had an ADR for dinner, but they thought it was for lunch at 1:30. A CM looked it up and it was for 4:30. I guess these people were really nasty and demanded to be let in, but of course were told a private party was going on and they don’t serve lunch here.

I guess they left really mad. And using words that shouldn;t be used in front of children.

We also just talked a lot about all things Disney! It was a nice chat. She got a call then, so I went and walked a bit.

I saw this sign that I had missed the night we ate here for dinner, so I took a picture of that.



Skip called me then and asked if we were done yet. It was only 2 and the party wasn’t over till 2:30. I reminded him if that. He said he was already at AK. He grumbled how this was his least favorite park and he was there early and by himself. This just proved my point that he never pays attention to what I say.

Oh well, the agreement had been that I would call him as soon as we were heading over there. Not my fault he went early. I told him to go on some bigger stuff that Claire couldn’t ride till we got there.


I went back and chatted some more wit hthe Grandma. We could hear laughing and all sorts of excitement in the room. I tried to peak through the window. It looked like Alice and the Mad Hatter were gone. It also appeared they were playing hide and seek. The kids were having a blast.

Before long the other parents were returning back to pick up the kids.

The guy CM came out to tell us it was time to get the kids, but he had gotten them to sleep, so walk in quietly.


As we walked in the girls were giggling and shaking from holding in their laughter.





Then they all lift their heads and yell surprise! And they have flowers for their parents. It was so sweet.


Look at this baby face. I just love this picture of her. She’s still my baby in this picture.



We then gathered up her stuff. She showed me her picture and her autograph book.



It was worth every penny to do this. To see the joy on her face and the joy I felt seeing it, was just priceless. I also got some pictures that most don’t get as well.

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Thanks for sharing your trip with us and welcome.


I don't think there is too much of a standard format as long as its entertaining and topical. You are showing us a side of Disney we may, or may not, have been previously aware of. That's the neat thing about Disney, is that it can mean so many different things to so many different people. Not a lot of amusement parks can claim that.


My last Disney trip was in 2005, and while I was in the MK early for "Keys to The Kingdom",I got to see all the little princesses making their way to the castle for breakfast. Surreal and fascinating all at the same time. I don't think I quite realized how into the whole princess thing people get until I read this TR. I also recall a co-worker last year, got in to work way over the top happy, I mean like "Winning the Lottery" or "Scoring a big fat raise or promotion" happy. The cause of his happiness: he had gotten the family tickets for the castle breakfast. I'm not even exagerrating about his happiness level.


Also have to agree with you on the parade - I think we've all seen it, those of us who start lining a parade route 30-60 minutes or more to see a parade. Then about 30 seconds before it starts, you get that tap on your back. "Excuse me, my little daughter can't see the parade, can she squeeze in front of you, she's not tall" You think about it for all of 2 seconds because, let's face it, you don't want to look like a heartless jerk, next thing you know, you are now 2-3 deep trying to see the parade over them. The porch of Hall of Presidents looks like a great place, but as you noted the construction walls probably had a lot to do with that.

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Thanks for sharing your trip with us and welcome.


I don't think there is too much of a standard format as long as its entertaining and topical. You are showing us a side of Disney we may, or may not, have been previously aware of. That's the neat thing about Disney, is that it can mean so many different things to so many different people. Not a lot of amusement parks can claim that.


My last Disney trip was in 2005, and while I was in the MK early for "Keys to The Kingdom",I got to see all the little princesses making their way to the castle for breakfast. Surreal and fascinating all at the same time. I don't think I quite realized how into the whole princess thing people get until I read this TR. I also recall a co-worker last year, got in to work way over the top happy, I mean like "Winning the Lottery" or "Scoring a big fat raise or promotion" happy. The cause of his happiness: he had gotten the family tickets for the castle breakfast. I'm not even exagerrating about his happiness level.


Also have to agree with you on the parade - I think we've all seen it, those of us who start lining a parade route 30-60 minutes or more to see a parade. Then about 30 seconds before it starts, you get that tap on your back. "Excuse me, my little daughter can't see the parade, can she squeeze in front of you, she's not tall" You think about it for all of 2 seconds because, let's face it, you don't want to look like a heartless jerk, next thing you know, you are now 2-3 deep trying to see the parade over them. The porch of Hall of Presidents looks like a great place, but as you noted the construction walls probably had a lot to do with that.



Thanks for your thoughts.

When I took my older 2 (who are now DD18 and DS22) My DD was close to 5 and 7 and those trips. She liked princesses ,but never would've dressed up. She was more of a tomboy. It's so amazing how different Claire is. She really believes the Princesses are real. I made the mistake of saying something about Toontown being closed recently and she cried and cried..."Where will Mickey and Minnie live now?" I guess I hadn't realized the extent of her beliefs till then.

As for parades, I don't mind letting a small child in front of me, but I just hate when they then think it's OK for the whole family to come in too. I hate to be heartless, but for now, it's just a no to them.

We learn something new each trip...and learn from our mistakes too.

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Thanks the the report on the Tea Party! That looks amazing. I will definitely have to get that for my niece next time we visit!


The teaparty was awesome. I highly recomend this to anyone who has little ones. I do believe since we have gone though, they no longer serve sandwiches with it. Not sure why. I think it's just cupckaes.

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