LIVE Trip Report 7/13/17-7/21/17

Hello everyone! I’m going to ATTEMPT a live trip report for our trip this month! I have always had the intention of doing a trip report for our trips in the past, but upon re-entry to the “real world”, life gets super busy and then I never get around to it. So I thought maybe if I update regularly while we are on our trip, I will be more likely to actually DO the report:)

I will start with some background information about our upcoming trip:

This trip will include myself, DH, DD9, and DD1 (15 months this Saturday to be exact!). We will be staying at BLT for the first time and our first stay as DVC members. We will be driving from Pittsburgh on Thursday July 13th. We plan to leave sometime between 3 and 5 am depending on how much sleep DH can get this week and the night before (he works til 9 pm tonight and 10 pm tomorrow night). He likes to do all the driving (he thinks I speed too much LOL) so the departure time is based solely on his sleep schedule. Let’s all take a moment to send some good sleepy pixie dust for him this week so we can leave as early as possible on Thursday morning! We plan to drive straight through and arrive early evening. I’m hoping to activate our Annual Passes at the MK ticket window (yay for short walk to MK from BLT) so that we can hit the ground running on Friday morning. We have groceries we are taking with us as well as an order from Instacart set to arrive between 6 pm and 7 pm on Thursday evening with perishables.

Further background on our family: This will be our 4th family trip. The previous 3 trips have just been myself, DH, and oldest DD. We went in Oct 2012 for the first time when DD was 4 years old and stayed at CSR. (I had been twice in the past as a child and then once as an adult for spring break in college). We fell in love with Disney and planned trips for June 2014 at CR CL and June 2015 at GF CL. We became DVC members back in March of 2016, just before DD1 was born. Last year we unfortunately had to take a year off of our Disney travels due to DD being born and I had some medical complications after her delivery that forced me to take extra maternity leave. I have missed Disney so much over these past two years. But I am happy to say we are making up for lost time with this upcoming trip and another in January 2018 to celebrate oldest DD’s 10th birthday!! I’m also considering a quick mommy-daughter trip with the oldest in April for F&G but we still haven’t decided on that one.

I hope you all will enjoy this attempt. I also plan to post pics on instagram as we tour. Here is a link to my instagram name if you want to follow along:

Feel free to send a request to follow if you like:) I will try to approve followers as I get them!

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A few pics for attention:

My family: From the baby’s first birthday party. Minnie Mouse theme of course:)

The Girls: The oldest is Allison and the youngest is Isabella.

Packing yesterday: The outfits for the week for my girls.

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Looking forward to following along. Pixie dust for enough sleep and uneventful travels. Then, a magical vacation!

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Our schedule for the week: UPDATE COMPLETE!

Thursday July 13th:
Driving day. We will leave between 3-5 am (see above). Number of stops will depend on the kiddos, especially the little one. This will be her first trip to Disney and first real family vacation… she has never been in the car more than 2 hrs at a time. I have to be honest I’m a bit nervous about this and how she will do. But I will be sitting in the back seat with her and DD9 (Lord help me!!!) so I’m hoping that will help. We have LOTS of snacks planned. And she loves her bottle still which typically soothes her and puts her to sleep (I was not forcing her to wean from that until after this trip for the sole purpose of the car ride and sleeping!). I’m hoping to arrive by 7 or 8 pm at the latest. We’ll walk to MK to get our APs activated and then turn in early so we rest well for our first day in the parks.

Friday July 14th: Magic Kingdom!
Morning EMH are scheduled for this day. I know this is not the best strategy to go on this day unless we will be making full use of EMH. But we decided to add a day to the beginning of our trip after EMH were scheduled. If we wake up and utilize EMH then great. If not, we will enjoy the extra day and just do what we can. We have FPs for BTMRR, Splash, and 7DMT. I’m also hoping to meet Tinkerbell on this day (I have outfits planned for that, so I have to find a way to make this work!!! Anything other than that will be gravy:)
Meals: Lunch at quick service in MK (possibly Pecos Bill or CHH), Dinner 5:05 pm Chef Mickey’s (don’t throw stones, it is one of our family traditions and DH’s favorite… I have to oblige him with certain requests so he lets me keep planning these trips!

Saturday July 15th: Hollywood Studios
Plans for the day include RD RNR (I hope we can make it with a short wait). FPs for TSM, ToT, and Frozen Singalong (we’ll see how the baby is doing if she can handle sitting for a show… DH and I have already prepared DD9 that one of us may have to get up and take the baby out from things depending on her fussiness factor). I’m also hoping to meet some Disney Jr. characters like Sofia, Jake and Doc. Also want to meet Olaf since he wasn’t doing meets last trip in 2015. We also MUST meet Buzz and Woody (outfits planned around meeting them for this day… we plan to head straight to their meet after RnR if DD9 doesn’t chicken out). Lunch will be at quick service somewhere… I’m not a huge fan of most of the HS quick service places, but I’m trying to be more flexible knowing the baby will affect our touring to a large degree. I don’t plan on making a long day at HS. We’ll probably leave shortly after lunch, head back to BLT for a nap. Then we hope to make it to church that evening at Corpus Christi Roman Catholic Church (would love to know if anyone has ever attended Sat evening mass here). This is another one of DH’s requests and I’m happy to oblige to be sure we make it to services. Dinner TBD depending on DD1’s mood/hunger level. We may just grab something at Contempo Cafe and then swim for a bit or stop at Disney Springs (although I’m sure Sat night there is NOT ideal with parking and crowds). Bedtime will be early that night in preparation for the next day.

Sunday July 16th: Magic Kingdom
We have pre-RD breakfast at 8:00 am planned for CRT. Unfortunately I found out about EMM AFTER I had this meal scheduled. But this was a very specific request of DD9 and this is what worked out best based on the park hours and crowd levels for the other parks on other days. I’m hoping it doesn’t affect us too much. I have fast passes for Rapunzel & Tiana M&G, 7DMT, and PPF. Hoping to tackle the majority of Fantasyland on this day. We have no scheduled lunch or dinner ADRs so that we can be flexible to a certain degree after our breakfast and besides FPs. Hoping to utilize the modify feature to get additional fast passes which will help with waits for the baby. I also have quite the goal of trying to watch FOF parade on this day. Not sure how that will work out with DD1 as she usually naps from about 1-3 but in other outings has a hard time falling asleep when there is too much going on. (In Pittsburgh we call that nebby lol). So we’ll see how that works out. We may watch HEA from TOTW Lounge on this night depending on how tired we are. Other option is to watch on Monday or Tuesday. We’ll have to base this on our fatigue factor:)

Monday July 17th: Magic Kindgom and Epcot
This is the only day that we have for sure planned to park hop. I plan to do MK at RD and use some rider swap passes (will get those when we use our FPs on prior days for BTMRR, Splash, and 7DMT as well as possibly others depending on what we get to on Sunday) to minimize waits and get in some of DD9s favorite rides. Hoping to get to Adventureland, Frontierland, and Liberty Square type attractions in the morning. I plan for us to eat lunch around noon-ish somewhere in Frontierland and then head back to BLT for nap/rest. Then depending on the rest schedule, we will head to Epcot sometime later in the afternoon. We have dinner ADRs for Via Napoli at 4:55 so that is when we HAVE to arrive by (even if it means putting a sleeping DD1 in the stroller… thank goodness we will have the monorail to keep her in for that long monorail ride to EP). I have FPs for Character Spot and Spaceship earth prior to dinner, but not worried about using those (I just made them early so that they can expire for my plans for later). Then we have FEA scheduled for 5:50-6:50. I plan to meet A&E at some point either prior to dinner or after riding FEA (again this will depend on DD1, but this is a must do because of our outfits LOL). I’m banking on the potential for scoring some same day fast passes for Soarin on this evening… I know I know I shouldn’t count on this but it will be extra pixie dust if I can find these (see later in the week) for just DD9 and I (DH is not a fan of flying so he doesn’t care for this ride). But I have been checking every day around 6:30-7 pm and for the past week, I have always been able to find a same day fast pass for Soarin for 2 people. So here’s hoping this remains the same next week!!!

Tuesday July 18th: Animal Kingdom
So in my perfect little Disney world filled with pixie dust and fairies my plan will go as follows. We will arrive at AK around 30 min prior to RD. I plan to walk with purpose (with DD1 in stroller and dragging the rest of the crew with us) to NRJ so that we can all ride that first. Then we have FPs planned for FoP which only DD9 and I will be using (see above on DH and flying). I probably will get a RS pass in case DD9 (or myself) really loves the ride as everyone has said it is amazing so that we can ride again if we so desire. Then I have FPs for all of us for KS from 10:15-11:15 and Everest at 11:15-12:15 (if able to, will modify to push times up). Will utilize RS if able as well so DD9 can ride again on EE if desired. Lunch will be quick service on this day depending on what part of the park we are when it’s lunch time. Will head to Dinoland at some point to ride TS and PW (crazy but DD9 LOVES this ride!) and hope to score FPs for Minnie & Mickey M&G in their safari gear. Will head back to resort for rest and then we have Dinner ADRs at Beaches & Cream (will be our first time eating there). Depending on how long dinner takes (and how tired we are) we may consider exploring around the Boardwalk area a bit… but I’m not counting on that as sleep is a major priority for my family so that we can make RD every day.

Wednesday July 19th: Epcot
We plan to arrive 30 min before RD if possible. If we are not able to ride Soarin on our other Epcot day (see above) using the modify trick to get additional fast passes, DD9 and I will be booking it to Soarin at RD and ride this first. If we ride Soarin on Monday (pixie dust my Monday plan works!!!) then we will head to meet Joy & Sadness at RD and then go from there. We have FPs for Nemo, LWTL, and TT scheduled. We also have lunch ADRs at Garden Grill (another first for us this trip). Depending on our stamina (or exhaustion) we may try to roam around World Showcase and explore the countries there. Otherwise we’ll return to our resort and swim (this will probably be DD9’s preference).

Thursday July 20th: Magic Kingdom
Our last day in the parks will be spent at none other than Magic Kingdom! We will start the day out with PreRD ADR breakfast at BOG (first time doing bkft here!). Then we will do some rides in Tomorrowland and potentially repeat some of our faves in Fantasyland if time allows. We have FPs for Buzz, Space, and 7DMT (my DD9’s fave ride which is why we have FPs for all our full MK days). Lunch will be quick service probably at PVH or Cosmic Rays. Depending on how the day is going, we’ll head back for rest/nap and then return for dinner at Crystal Palace at 5:25 pm. It is possible we will stay through the afternoon if DD1 falls asleep in her stroller or remaining in a good mood. The mid-day breaks are typically necessary though for us to cool down in the heat of the day so I’m planning on that unless we are really enjoying our park time. I don’t anticipate us staying too late since we will be driving back the next day.

Friday July 21st: Driving home
Makes me sad just thinking about the end of the trip already. But crazy thing is, our 180 day ADR day is on Sunday July 23rd for our January 2018 trip! So that will make leaving much easier this time knowing we have another trip right around the corner. The continued planning will definitely help.

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Love this! Looking forward to hearing about your trip! Looks like you have a wonderful family! :slight_smile:

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Awww thanks!!!

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I’m from Pittsburgh, too (Beaver County). :grinning: Excited to follow along, and to hear about Corpus Christi. DH and I will be down at WDW in Oct/Nov and will have 3 masses to catch, and I have been debating between CC and Mary Queen of the Universe. Makes me nervous visiting new parishes :grimacing:

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Me too! I will let you know how it goes. I put in the GPS from our resort to both parishes and they were within about 1-2 minutes time wise for the estimated drive time of each other (both were about 20 minutes away which I am sure may vary depending on traffic). The time of the mass worked better for Sat evening (4:30 pm mass) so that it won’t interfere as much with meal times for the kiddos (especially the baby).

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Lovely pics of your family. Looking forward to your report. Would love to hear your impressions of BLT (room, restaurants, other amenities).

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Looking forward to following along…

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Great photos - your girls are beautiful. Looking forward to your report!

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I love matching outfits!

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Good luck keeping up with it live. It’s an admirable goal. We also recently became DVC owners at BLT and just stayed there in June. Have a great trip! I’m looking forward to your report. Your girls are adorable.

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Thank you @NoCapes, @bswan26, @JJT, and @tjkjbarton ! I’m going to work on quickly updating our daily plans in the above post. For anyone else who will be in the world at the same time, let me know so we can look for each other in the parks!

Updated my “plan” for the week. I still have a few last minute things to pack tonight and check on but otherwise I think we are pretty much ready to go!

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Let me know if anyone makes an instagram request to follow me as well… I have had a few requests which are obvious liners but some other random ones that I can’t tell. I don’t want to deny any liners from following me:)

I did yesterday. I just signed up to start following Disney on Instagram. My name is gr82btnvol2017.

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Just approved you @gr82btnvol!

Just sent you a request ok instagram to follow your trip! 130 days for us.

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Another Pittsburgher reporting in! Ya’ll don’t mind picking me up tomorrow morning on your way down, do you?

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