DSaturday -Arrival Day
Our trip began on Saturday January 13. The group consisted of myself , DD-25, DS-29, DDiL and two granddaughters who are both 4. They are cousins. We booked two rooms. One for son, his wife and daughter and I stayed in other room with daughter and her little girl
We set out at 9:30 that morning and arrived in Orlando about 3:00 on Saturday. We drove fron Georgia and stopped for lunch with my brothers family near Gainesville. It is about a 5 hour drive if driven straight through. We checked into pop century and I was hoping for renovated rooms. Our room was ready upon arrival. We opted out of housekeeping in both rooms so got 2 -$60 gift cards. We got the area we requested in building 7 in the 80’s section—so renovated rooms! Yay!!! I had wanted ground floor right next to parking lot and that is what we got. We had decided to drive each day to parks since we had 2 strollers and 2 -4 year olds. So this was what worked best for us. Our room was maybe 20 yards to the curb at the parking lot. So convenient and we are not in room much so didn’t care about view or being close to lobby.
We unloaded and got ready for our first planned Disney experience. We had an ADR for luau at Polynesian. We had picked up tickets in lobby at pop century. And arrived right at 5:15. It took us a while to find parking spot as it was a holiday weekend. But sat right away and enjoyed the show and the food.
The show was over before 7. We went thru security at Polynesian and hopped on monorail and arrived at MK. We had to activate our annual passes. This took about 20 minutes. It was almost 8 by this time. We had booked 3 fast passes So we went straight to Jungle cruise with no wait. Then rode Magic carpets with 2nd fp. I was able to modify the 3rd fp for Small World to earlier time so we went straight to it after Magic carpets. We then got fp for Little Mermaid then stopped at Dumbo for last ride of the night. It was 9:30 and time to get girls into bed. It took us almost an hour from time we left Dumbo until we got back to hotel I forgot how long it takes to get around Disney. But we got back to hotel , took baths and into bed with visions of Disney characters all in our heads. End of arrival day.
Sunday-Epcot/Magic Kingdom Day
So we jumped up when alarm went off the next morning. The temperature was all over the place during the week so the first thing my daughter did was open the door to see how cool the morning was. Good thing she did— WE WERE LOCKED INSIDE OUR ROOM. We had done the deadbolt the night before and it would not move no matter how hard we tried. We fiddled with it for maybe 10 minutes then called front desk. It seemed to take forever for someone to arrive. I kept going back and trying over and over. Finally it budged. About the time i got it open the maintenance guy shows up. Like 15 or 20 minutes later. I was panicked by this time. Not only were we locked in but we were now late because we spent all this time messing with door and calling front desk instead of getting dressed. So when maintenance arrived they decided to take lock off and work on it . So we now are trying to get dressed with a strange man in our room. Not a good start to day!!!
However we finally escaped our room and headed to Epcot.
We were about 20 min behind schedule- which was pretty good considering Our first fp was space ship earth. It was down so we went straight to The Seas with Nemo and friends then Turtle Talk with Crush. My girls loved both of these. Next we had ADR at Akershus at 10:30. The line to check in and to be seated was long. We waited a few minutes and someone open the rope and asked for the Locke party. Wow.! I felt special and was excited. They said because we were first time Ap holders we got a little pixie dust! The girls took Picts with Belle, then we were seated. We really enjoyed the food. We saw Cinderella, Snow White, Mulan and Aurora. The girls walked in the Princess Parade. The castle was beautiful.
After our meal we had Fp for Frozen ride. When we got on the seat was soaked and we had to sit right in the water so all of our bottoms were wet. I do not remember getting wet like this in the past. It was a little uncomfortable for a while but we dried out. My girls did not like getting splashed though so even though we had another fp later in week the girls did not want to ride and get wet again so I canceled.
We saw Elsa and Anna next. The wait was 15 or 20 minutes. The girls loved them and took tons of pictures.
At this point in day my son and his wife wanted to go around the world, so my daughter and I took both girls back to Magic Kingdom So we hopped on monorail and made it to MK in about 35 minutes. I secures fp for Tea cups then we went to see Ariel. The wait time said 40 but I knew it was time for parade so I asked if ttime was correct. The cm went around corner to check line and she said you are right. The wait time is only 20 minutes. In reality we may have waited 8 minutes. So lesson learned. It never hurts to ask. Girls got autographs and pictures
Next was Little Mermaid ride and then on to dumbo. The girls played on play ground there which they loved. We then saw mickeys philharmagic which is a family favorite. Then we walked back across to magic carpets and ate a late lunch since we had late breakfast. I used the mobile ordering for the first time. It was great. After eating we hopped back on monorail to Epcot. We had to go back through security- I hope they change this - and saw that Spaceship Earth was working again so we rode that. They had put anytime Fp on our account since it was down in AM. Afterwards we met back up with my son and wife in China. They took us to Japan to do the Pick a Pearl experience. It was incredible and the Japanese ladies made it so much fun! My girls had a blast selecting the pearls and watching them open up the clams
We then walked to Germany to see the model trains. Then walked back toward Mexico. Along the way they enjoyed the drums and instruments at a little hut between Germany and China. We rode the boat ride at the Mexican pavilion and then it was time for our ADR at La Hacienda. We had to wait about 10 min to be seated. We had 8 pm adr. Our plan was to watch illuminations from restaurant. I was under impression that all tables were in big room with huge windows but we were seated in a side room with one tiny window. So when show began my daughter took her daughter outside to watch and I just stood at small window and watched since we were only ones in this side area. My other granddaughter fell asleep at table and missed it.
So then it was end of day and back to the hotel. Both girls were asleep by the time we arrived. We had no trouble getting out of Epcot parking lot. We had parked in journey lot and it took us maybe 10 minutes to get back to Pop from time we reached our car. We pulled up to curb to get sleeping girls out so just a short walk to our ground floor room Another productive day!
Big mistake-Since girls were asleep we just put them straight in bed. About 4 that morning my daughter woke me up and said my granddaughter had wet the bed. Oh no. Something she hadn’t done in a while but we really should have woke her up to do bathroom before bed. Live and learn—. Anyway I picked up phone and dialed front desk to see about getting extra sheets. CM picked up phone and asked how she could help and I opened my mouth and nothing. I tried again and nothing. I had laryngitis and literally no sound would come out My daughter realized and took phone and explained. They arrived within 10 min with new sheets, blankets everything. And offered to help change bed. But we had opted out of housekeeping, so I gave her a tip and told her we would handle it ourselves. She did take soiled sheets away. After all the excitement I could never get back to sleep. The next day was going to be long with me waking at 4. But I hung in there!
Day 2- Animal Kingdom and AK Lodge
We were up and ready to leave by 8 AK opened at 7 but not much my girls could do was available during EMH and we had fp for FoP in afternoon for 2 people and Navri river for other 4 in our party so we decided to arrive by 8:30. The girls got their Wilderness Explorer books and saw a cm first thing before the bridge and earned their first badge. We then took time to take family pictures in front of tree
My girls love Pocahontas so we went straight to meet and greet which began at 9 even though park had been open since 7. We waited maybe 10 minutes and both girls loved the interaction. We met college age girls in line that were so excited when they met her for the first time. They were from Indiana and were so sweet talking to me and my granddaughters.
After meet and greet we walked along the Discovery Island trail - backwards( sorry ). And headed toward Africa for FoLK show. We had fp but it looked like everyone else did too. The fp line was out past Tusker House. We waited a while before we could enter. We all took turns running to restroom during the wait. To my surprise when we finally got in we got pretty good seats on end of second row. We love this show. It is incredible!
After lion king we made our way to the train to go to Conservation Station. We did meet and greet with Doc Mcstuffins, completed 3 of the W/E badges and saw a monkey getting checked out under sedation through the glass at the medical observation room Before we left the girls enjoyed the affection section brushing the goats. It probably took us 1 1/2 hour from time we left train station until time we returned
Next was Yak and Yeti for lunch. It was good but portions were large. We should have shared some of entrees but we did enjoy. Next we walked the Maharajah Jungle trek. And then made our way to Expedition Everest to use our FP’s After EE we made our way to the boneyard so girls could run and play for a while I made sure each day to set aside time in afternoon for girls to have some play time. This must have worked because we were at Disney for 7 nights and not one major meltdown and we never stopped for naps or anything. The girls really did well and were so sweet all week.
We finally were heading to pandora to ride FoP. We had 2 fp’s so we planned to do rider swap. My son and daughter rode first while my DiL and it took the girls on Navri river ride. The river was beautiful. My granddaughter said “ How long did it take them to build all this? It’s pretty! “. I think she was impressed even at 4.
It only took 15 minutes for my daughter and son to get thru line and they quickly met back up with us as we were exploring Pandora. Then it was my turn. My son and I went together this time to ride FoP and again it took 15 minutes. I loved the ride and so did my son. My daughter loved it too but got a little motion sickness We actually had fp for later in week but my son had ridden twice already and my daughter didn’t want to ride again so hopefully I made someone’s day when I released those Fp’s By time we got done in Pandora it was 4:30. We left to drive to AK Lodge which literally took 3 min from time we reached car.
The Lodge was gorgeous. We arrived at feeding time so we saw many animals. Two baby giraffes! It was awesome.
Our Adr was 6:15 so the girls played on playground while we waited for time to eat. They met a little boy from Florida. He was only 2 but they had so much fun playing with him. When it was time for us to leave for adr he cried because his friends were leaving. He was so cute!
We checked in at Boma and were seated within minutes. The food was good and we loved the ambience of the restaurant. We planned an early night since we had to get up early the next day for breakfast at 1900 Parkfare. So off to our car and on the way Isabella tripped and skinned her knee on the asphalt. When she gets upset she wants her bunny. This is a little “softie “ blankie with a little bunny head. She has had this since birth and sleeps with her every night and holds it when she gets upset. Anyway it was at this point that we realized we did not have bunny. We had lost her somewhere along the way!!! I panicked. Bunny is very important and is also a keepsake that my daughter will always keep. We are usually so careful with her. I ran first to restroom because we had been in there earlier that evening. No bunny! So then I am sure the lady in the restaurant thought I was a wild woman as I literally ran back in and started hysterically explaining what I was looking for. First person shook head and sent me to another lady. She turned around and went into the back room and came back holding “bunny”. I have never been so relieved in all my life. Crisis diverted and off we go to hotel once again.