Last week my DH and I took a quick “turn and burn” to Orlando from LA.
We left Monday night out of LAX on the red eye (JetBlue, the extra cost for “even more space”, worth every penny! We slept the whole flight). Got in nearly an HOUR early. This allowed us time to change into the clothing we carried on (carefully pressed and in a garment bag, we had a thing that morning we wanted to look fresh for). Yes, I was that girl doing hair/makeup in the airport.
Grabbed the rental car (score for prebuying an e-pass online 2 weeks before! Rental company tolls: $10/day. Actual cost for 3 days of tolls: $6.75), and headed towards the parks!
We parked at the boardwalk and ate breakfast along the water. Then meandered over to Hollywood Studios, and straight for Toy Story Land.
Rode both new attractions, Alien swirling saucers is my favorite. So cute! It was like an 80’s dance party!! We then realized I am a MORON, and our appointment wasn’t until 11:30 (not 10 like I thought!), and so we met up with some friends from CA who were there, and whom we planned to spend Wednesday with.
We got to meet the 3 little girls, and catch up with them, my husband works with the guy, and I helped the wife plan the trip when I found out they didn’t have much planned! EEKS. We did muppets 3-d with them, and then got them settled at beauty and the beast before it was time for DH and I to go to our appointment.
The rest of our day was mainly spent eating and drinking. We did walk over to Epcot to ride Frozen Ever After later in the afternoon. Then dropped by our friends’ campsite at Ft wilderness to drop some things I had for the girls off.
Checked into our hotel (off site…It was last minute and practically free. Better than an all-star, but I won’t stay there again!), and CRASHED.
Wednesday, Day 2:
Met our friends at the Contemporary valet at 7:50am, and we walked over to the Magic Kingdom. We had 8:30 Be Our Guest breakfast reservations, YUMMY!
At 9:30 the MAGIC began. I had arranged for a VIP Tour for our friends, and we tagged along at their request. Our guide was INCREDIBLE! I had sent over a tentative plan, and we did even MORE. Mind you, 4 parks with 4 adults, 1 guide and 3 girls (2, 4, 6!) in 7 hours is ambitious! We did:
Seven dwarves mine train
Adventures of Pooh (for the 2-yr old and her mom while we were on the mine train)
Then walked backstage and went to Epcot. We were at Epcot by 10:25am, walked in the back of American Adventure. Went to FEA, and met with Anna and Elsa.
Then stopped in Germany right at 11:05, we grabbed popcorn and the girls stopped to color in the toy store while DH and I stepped away for a few minutes. (Kids needed some down time and I needed water and a restroom!)
By 11:45 we were pulling out of Epcot and on our way to DHS. We backstage entered by rockin’ Roller coaster. (We were greeted with snacks and waters!) Went to TSL, the family with the older two and the guide went on SDD, and I had a FP for Alien Swirling Saucers, so DH and I took the littlest princess on that! While the whole family rode midway mania, DH and I mobile ordered lunch.
After lunch, the family went to meet Star Wars characters and DH and I stepped away for some alone time again. (Much needed! Our kids are 12–19, so it’s exhausting with littles! But FUN when it’s not your kids!!)
We then went to Animal Kingdom, and entered right at Pandora! It was 2:50 by now, and we had the guide until 4:30. We managed both Pandora rides, I waited with the littles when they went on FOP, and our guide graciously rescued Kermit from the Kidani Villas for me, saving me a trip later in the evening! By now it’s about 3:55, so we use our last 35 minutes to visit Mickey & Minnie!
At lunch I had modified FPs for everyone, and DH and I had some anytime on our account. So after our guide left, we were able to send DH and his coworker on EE, and then we went on the safari as a group. (Oh my, keeping 2-yr olds seated is HARD when a zebra is pressed against your vehicle!!)
The girls made it until about 6pm, and the meltdowns started. Honestly I am impressed they made it that long! We bussed back to the Contemporary, and our friends went back to their campsite, while DH and I went to Epcot to ride Test Track and grab dinner.
We FINALLY saw illuminations! And closed down epcot, leaving around 9:45. The only full day we have ever had at WDW together!
Thursday, we changed plans in the morning and decided to hit Animal Kingdom to go see some Liner friends @JackOfAll and his crew! We rode primeval whirl and FOP. Enjoyed the back walkway from Africa to Pandora.
Then we went to Epcot to drop Kermit with some friends who agreed to hold him until later this month, and have one last walk through the World Showcase. Then lunch at Kona Cafe (BREAD!) with our friends before heading back to the airport.
What I learned this trip?
Call tsa cares JUST IN CASE. The security line at MCO took us nearly an hour and I almost didn’t make it. The a/c wasn’t working very well and people were very close. I get really dizzy in heat and standing stationary for long periods. Luckily I didn’t pop my hip out, which is usually the case!
Buy an extra bag of caramel popcorn. Not 6, just 2. LOL
If you can manage it? Book a VIP tour. It’s really worth it.
I’m officially a diva. I have found I love doing WDW without a plan in place, and my husband is just the best ever for making it possible.
If it’s a short trip, have another one planned. I leave again 3 weeks from tomorrow. Otherwise I would have serious Disney letdown right now! (And I’m now trying to figure out a trip in september. Maybe solo. Maybe a short hop with DH)
Oh and going to work the next morning after a flight delay and an unfortunate food incident is BRUTAL. My boss is a gem though, so it was bearable.
The whole gang with Mickey & Minnie
DH and I on day 1 (after a red eye and us both working on Monday)
And last day, catching up with JackOfAll: