Trip Report: Our Mickey-Tastic Adventure

I’m awake early on day 4 of our trip, so it’s time to start our trip report!
Our pre-trip summary (TLDR - First time for DH and DS2. I went to MK as a 4 year old. 6 day trip staying off site.

Day 1: Flight and MK

We had a 7 am flight, and our early morning kicked off with a 56 lb suitcase at check in. So at 5:30 am, I was sitting on the floor with two open suitcases, moving shoes and books from one to the other. (The books are for when we visit my grandparents. I’m not crazy enough to think I’ll have time to read at WDW.)

Security took about 30 minutes to reach the front and then a few extra minutes for them to check DS2’s wipes and milk and handcheck our too-big-for-the-scanner stroller. There was a Make a Wish family on our flight and they got to meet the pilot before boarding.

We arrived on time, but the rental car process was so slow! We had to queue 3 different times, which was so annoying and we told the lady so at the garage exit when she asked how our experience was. It had been an hour since landing and we just wanted out of the garage!

We drove to AoA to wander around for a little while before checking into our Airbnb. DS2 loved the lobby so much we had to tell him that there was more to see! Just wait, kid! This is the pre-show! We played on the Nemo playground a bit and then ate Mickey waffles at Pop’s food court before going back to wander the Cars area. It was here that we pulled out our camera to discover a cracked lens…nope. Just a cracked lens filter. I thought my vacation was ruined before it began, but that’s what the filter is for and we were good to go.

We gave a very tired DS2 his new Pluto lovie and drove to our very Mickey themed Airbnb. After settling him down for his nap, I opened all our luggage and got it all sorted out the way I wanted it. Then I went to pick up our Walmart order. I was the only one there, but the employees didn’t respond to my check in, so it was a slow process, but I didn’t mind the chance to check Instagram and chill in the car for a bit. (I can already tell I bought too many groceries, but I saved at least $50 on our breakfast and drinks alone. Not to mention time in line to purchase those.) I also picked up Panera for dinner. Honestly, Disney QS food isn’t that expensive. Eating out in general is getting expensive. It was $27 for a sandwich, a salad, and a side of mac and cheese from Panera.

We got slowed down by a dirty diaper incident after naptime, so we didn’t leave for the park until 4:45. 30 minutes later, we were walking in the gates, so I’d say we picked a good Airbnb!

As I mentioned in my other thread, this was a very crowded night at MK. (the day after MLK day and a crowd level 9) We waited 20 minutes for our Mickey & Minnie FP and after all the airport waiting, DS2 wasn’t excited about that. But he loved M&M and we ran into two sweet cast members in the gift shop afterwards who gave him stickers and a first visit button. It was a sweet little bit of extra magic for our first attraction.

We walked outside as they were just starting the MousekeDance music. At first I was bummed, because I wanted a castle photo before sunset, but then I noticed the CMs blocking the street off and knew that the space in front of him was available. So we got a front row view of the floats turning onto Main Street. I got choked up watching DS2 point to all his favorite MM Clubhouse friends. Then we followed the floats up to the hub.

Pluto got swarmed as soon as he stepped off the float, and by this time, our next FP window was open. We mobile ordered a Dole Whip, which DS2 and I enjoyed while DH (allergic to pineapple) went to Splash. The Dole Whip was much taller than I expected, and I had to gobble it down so DS2 didn’t eat half of it. It was delicious and worth the hype in my opinion.

DS2 and I had a small world FP. I rode this as a 4 year old, and it was even better than I remembered. So many cute details and so much to look at! We met DH at our 3rd FP for Buzz but the FP line was WAY back. (Possibly from 2 big rides being closed most of the day.) We’d noticed that everything had long lines, including the People Mover. We didn’t want to push DS2, so we modified to Mad Tea Party and enjoyed a little spin before finding a spot for the projection show.

We walked up at 7:10 and there was plenty of space for us. We were in the upper right portion of this oval, to the right of that fountain.

We had an excellent view of the castle and we all loved OUAT. DS2 didn’t love the fireworks as much, even with his headphones on, (and it had also been an early morning) so DH walked him to the Town Square Theater while I finished the show. There’s no way we would have been able to get out of our section with the stroller at that point. HEA was good, but I actually liked OUAT better. There’s more of a story and the projection technology is just cool.

Epcot’s fireworks were going off as we drove home, so it only took us 30 minutes to leave the park and get to our car.

I was a little worried for the rest of the week and our TP based on the CL that night, but we still had a magical first night!

Daily step count: 14,470 (I hit 10k walking into MK this evening)
Characters hugged: 2
Photo pass photos taken: 8
Crowd Level: 9 and it felt like it!


Great start! I’m looking forward to reading more.


Day 2: AK

My overachiever Disney mom started showing this morning. I was estimating 1 hour for us to drive to the parks and enter the gates. In reality, this took 23 minutes. So we arrived at AK at 8:10 (9 am opening) with 9:20 FP for Navi and nothing that we would want to modify it to.

So we spent a bit wandering around Discovery Island. We were at the Tree of Life when the photo pass photographer arrived, so we were first in line. Then we wandered Pandora and had a little snack before we could finally check in 5 minutes early for our Navi FP. (This starts a trend of us checking in early.) Our next attraction was FOLK. We let DS2 play for a bit before getting in line about 20 minutes before 10. We all loved the show and the line for the 2nd show was much larger when we exited at 10:30, so the first show is definitely the right choice!

We wanted to have mac and cheese at Eight Spoon Cafe so we rode Tri Spin since it was still before 11. Then we discovered that ESC wasn’t open today, even though MDE claimed that it would be. So we MO Flame Tree. (The pulled pork cheese fries are so yummy!) Don’t walk away from your food here, the birds will grab it! Happened to the lady at the table next to us while her husband sat there with his mouth open!

We walked through the Maharajah trail pretty quickly and then did our M&M FP. Another longer line than I hoped for. Lesson learned: character FP before 12 for truly short lines. But we got kisses from Minnie, so it all ended well.

We went back to the apartment for a nap and I drove to the character warehouse for a little shopping. Came home with 2 mugs and a Christmas ornament.

We were a little late leaving again, but made it to our Safari FP by 5:30 I think. We had an excellent view of the giraffes, elephants, lions, crocodiles, horned cows, and a few other animals I forget the names of. Got a peek at the hippo and saw the back end of the rhino. It was awesome to see the elephants wandering through. It’s a completely different than a zoo experience! And the lions were great. One of the females was laying on her back yawning at us, just like a little cat!

We stopped for treats at Tamu Tamu, and then walked through Pandora as it got dark. It was cool, but we were hoping for more glow. Maybe it wasn’t dark enough yet. Walked into Rivers of Light 15 minutes before the show. I loved the concepts the show used, but it seemed a bit repetitive by the end. Still a nice way to end the night. We waited for the tree to awaken before leaving. I wish they did those a bit closer together. We waited a while just to see one. Left at 7:30.

Turns out you can see just the very tip of the MK and Epcot fireworks from our apartment, peeking over the top of I4.

Daily step count: 13,248
Characters hugged: 2
Photo pass photos taken: 32 (We found 2 other photographers with no lines and our M&M photographer took 19 precious photos of our meet and greet!!!)
Crowd Level: 6


I’ve never even heard of Eight Spoon Cafe!

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Love this idea for some interesting “stats”. Also, I’m loving your report in general! Thanks for sharing with us!


@missoverexcited It’s a little kiosk open seasonally.

@TheProphetPaul Thanks! Day 3 has some pretty impressive hug and step numbers! And I might need to add an attraction count because we killed it yesterday!

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I looked it up straight away!

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I got choked up reading about you getting choked up! (Taking my DS7 and DS4 for the first time in May and am anticipating a lot of choking)


@Laura_hastings, you’re going to have the best time!!!

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Day 3: MK
Oh boy! This day was the best!

The forecast was calling for thunderstorms until 10 am, so I was a little concerned what that would do to our plan. Waiting for rope drop and getting DS2 in and out of his stroller in a downpour didn’t sound like fun, but this was our only other day at MK and I wasn’t going to give it up. We had a 2nd AK day planned though and I decided that worst case scenario, I would give up a 2nd ride on Safari and the Nemo show for MK rides if our morning didn’t work out.

In the morning, there was a steady rain but not too heavy. We had real raincoats and a large stroller cover and I wore sandals and put my sneakers in the backpack. I had planned to spend an hour wandering Main Street USA and taking photo pass castle photos, so we decided to arrive a little later. We were in the parking lot at 8:10. I didn’t write down when we walked into MK, but I would say 8:30ish based on our close parking spot and the low number of people braving the rain.

They didn’t do the morning show. We were a bit sad to miss it, but thankful for very low morning crowds because of the rain.

We actually followed our original morning plan pretty closely, but at the time, I felt like I was completely redoing our plan. (Can I just say a quick thank you to this community? Ya’ll saved me some major ‘our expensive vacation is going to be ruined’ anxiety and gave me confidence to make decisions on the fly!)

We planned to do Under the Sea first, but it wasn’t running yet, so we went to Pooh and then Buzz. I attempted to get an anytime FP because Splash was down for a bit, but it started running too quickly. Then we rode Under the Sea and headed for ETWB. We had 5:40 FP for it, but I wanted to be able to get 4th FP during the afternoon, so we went there around 9:40. I modified this FP to Pooh, because DS2 loved it. When they asked for additional characters, we jumped forward and were given the enchanted salt shaker. All we needed to do was the parade around the room with all the kids, so this is a great option for any tiny ones or shy kiddos who still want a photo with Belle. And since DS2 was feeling a little bashful, Mama got in the photo too. Score!

We went to meet Pluto and Daisy at the Silly Sideshow. The Friday before our trip started the new Mickey & Minnie Celebration items and I was SO EXCITED about this change, because Pluto is DH’s favorite (and apparently DS2’s now too) and there isn’t really another guaranteed spot to meet him. We planned to do Dumbo next, but there was too much of a line before the play area for it to be worth it to us, since we’d already done Triceratops Spin. We jumped in line to meet Pooh and Tigger 7 minutes before they started for the day and waited almost 20 minutes. That was the shortest I saw the line all day. Then we had our FP for Pooh and headed to Be Our Guest for lunch.

I had pre-ordered but somehow we ended up in the regular ordering line and it didn’t come up when I scanned my magic band. DS2 was in hungry meltdown mode, so I was frustrated that we weren’t able to save some time there. As soon as our food came to the table he was happy again, but the cheerios that have been placating him this entire trip were not working at the moment and I forgot to grab one of his fruit squeezers from the stroller on the way in. My potato leek soup was really good. DH got the croque monsieur. Yummy, but too rich for me. (My stomach was feeling a bit off from the changes in our usual routine.) I enjoyed the master’s cupcake frosting better than the cake, but DH liked the cake better than the frosting. Mainly, I just got it to say that I did. (Same reason that I later tried the Beverly in Epcot.)

After lunch, we had FP for Buzz, so we rode that again. DS2 wanted to shoot the targets… I mean, hold the laser gun… this time, so our score was terrible. I hadn’t been that good on round one, but DH had the hang of it now and had a score around 140,000. We made it to the flagpole when the dance party started, so we watched that together before DH and DS2 left for nap time. He was completely wiped out, but still waved at the characters from the stroller.

I walked past Fairytale Hall at 12:50. Standby claimed 10 minutes, so I jumped in line. It ended up being 35, but I couldn’t modify my Splash FP any earlier, so I had to do something in the mean time. I used the wait time to charge my phone (external battery), look over my TP, and sort through my photos. Tiana and I talked about her dress. Rapunzel and I talked about my recent hair cut.

I zoomed through the Splash FP queue at 1:25, grabbed Haunted Mansion (FP #4) and modified it to 2 pm. I was in the 2nd row, so my raincoat came in handy. The couple in front of me were a ton of fun and I enjoyed the ride. DH and I are not coaster people and we agreed afterwards that Splash was on the edge of our comfort zone. We both enjoyed it and would do it again, but the drop was a ‘grip the hand rail’ moment.

I tapped in 5 minutes early at Haunted Mansion and grabbed a FP to meet Ariel. I had already gotten small world for DH for that evening, so after Ariel, I got that for myself too. Spooky isn’t my usual style, but I’d heard many people say this was the best themed ride, so I had to do it. It was excellent. We were stopped for about a minute in the party room, so I got to look around and really notice all those details. I also loved the part at the end when you face the mirrors.

I mobile ordered dole whip for the parade (along with everyone else - give yourself at least 20 minutes for this) and found a spot right at the rope in front of Liberty Tree Tavern. I sat and enjoyed my dole whip. It was nice to eat it slowly this time instead of sharing it with a toddler who isn’t allowed that much sugar yet. The parade was excellent. (Although I found out the next day that Maleficent is back and I missed it by one day!) I really loved the costumes of the under the sea creatures and the ladies around Mickey & Minnie’s float. So imaginative and detailed!

Next was Philharmagic. Really cute show. I loved all the characters it incorporates and the end is really cute. Also a great time for a rest in a comfy chair and some additional phone charging. :wink:

Ariel loved my ears and asked me to make her some. No one was in the room when I entered, so it felt like the least rushed interaction. I probably talked to Rapunzel for just as long, but it felt more rushed with other people there. Also, I love that she says ‘splash ya later.’

At this point, I had just a few things left that I wanted to do even though they were nowhere close to each other, so I got a lot more steps in. I rode the People Mover and then got the sweet and spicy chicken waffle sandwich. Delicious and definitely spicy. Then I headed to the park entrance to wait for DH and DS2. I popped into the main photo pass location and then got in another ‘10 minute’ character line to see Tink. I should have just sat down for a bit. I think this one was 30 minutes as well.

After being reunited, we got our castle photo, rode the carousel, and did our 6pm FP for small world (DH was not a fan, but DS2 and I loved it again). I got 6:15 FP for Dumbo and 6:30 Pooh (FP #8 and our 3rd pooh ride today). There seemed to be a lot of evening FPs for Pooh, Buzz, and Dumbo, so we probably could have kept going, but there’s still a little line after the merge, and we could tell that DS2 was done with lines for the day.

Next we rode the People Mover together. I liked it a lot better at night. I almost couldn’t see anything inside Space Mt during the day and that just made for an awkward amount of time in the dark.

I would have liked to watch OUAT again, but I didn’t want to push DS2 too much, so we headed out of the park at 7:30 just before it started.

I felt like a Disney queen at this point. I used 8 FP (DH used 5) and did 22 attractions. The park was much less crowded. I told DH that it had to be a 5 or lower based on the amount of FP still available in the evening. Turns out it was a 2. What a difference from a 9 the first night!

Daily step count: 20266
Characters hugged: 9
Photo pass photos taken: 89
Crowd Level: 2 (we had a lot of success with SD FP, but there were also some inaccurate posted times)


My under the sea ears and pre-parade dole whip


Day 4: Epcot

This morning was a bit of an over-correction on the previous morning’s super early arrivals. It was chilly, so we didn’t want to stand outside too long and arrived at the park gate at 8:50. Liner fail. Tons of people were in front of us. We had photo pass take our photo and DS2 enjoyed listening to the drums before they let us in. I wasn’t worried, because we weren’t starting with the big 3 attractions.

Our first stop was Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy at Character Spot. DS2 is very into Minnie Mouse and giving her kisses. We got some adorable photos.

We moved to the Land pavilion to ride Living with the Land. DH does hydroponics at home, so I knew he would enjoy seeing their set up. Now he’s going to want to build a tall spinning lettuce structure. :laughing: We left our stroller there and walked to Nemo. We tapped in with our FP around 9:45, because standby said 20 minute wait. Turns out that there was no one in line, so we went right out and rode it again through standby. Some of these queues are so long! When it takes you 5 minutes just to walk through, you feel really bad for all the people who will be waiting there in the afternoon to ride.

After the ride, we looked around a bit, let DS2 run in the shark play area, and got to see the divers feeding the rays upstairs. Then we went to Norway for our 10:30 FEA FP. We were in the front row, and the boat was weighted a bit to my side, so me and the dad behind me ended up with wet butts. I really enjoyed the ride. Even if you’re not familiar with the ages of the movies, you can certainly tell which animatronics are newer!

We watched the trains in Germany before heading to Morocco for lunch. We shared the chicken platter (I asked for combo with falafel). It was delicious! I would eat here every day if I could. Since we only ordered one plate, we grabbed the macaron collection at Les Halles. (We are spoiled by a wonderful shop back home, but these were very good and about $1.50 cheaper than back home. Macarons are $$$! One of my goals this year is to learn how to make them!)

We had FP for Spaceship Earth. I was prepared to toss it, if DS2 really needed his nap, but he has adapted so well. He’s going down for his nap about an hour late, sleeping the same amount of time, and then going to bed 1.5 hours late (except our first MK night, which was nearly 3 hours late. What a trooper!)

DH and DS2 left for naptime and I headed back to France to meet Belle and Aurora. Aurora was finishing up when I arrived, so I jumped in the line for Belle (maybe the 10th family?) Belle was coming out in 5 minutes, and t took about 20 minutes total to meet her. That meant Aurora was coming back in 15 minutes, so I went straight to her line and was 2nd to meet her. (So queued from 12:55 to 1:35 to meet two princesses. Not a bad way to do it if you ask me!)

Then I moved inside to Impressions de France and got an ice cream macaron sandwich at Les Artisans. This macaron was much crisper. Maybe a little cold outside to eat ice cream, but I’d been planning this dessert for a while.

From here I wandered through some shops, got a drink at Joy of Tea, and sat down to rest for a bit on the bridge steps in Italy. Not too cold in the sun, but I asked DH to bring my coat and hat when they came back. Epcot is very windy in WS.

I picked up a croissant jambon fromage for dinner. (Only $5!) Found the perfect WDW mug at Port of Entry. I had grabbed a 4:50 FP for Soarin when DH left and a 6:05 FP for him, so I headed to Soarin. Maybe a 20 minute FP wait? DH waited about 35 minutes. We both really enjoyed the ride. Neither of us do coasters, and the feeling of falling terrifies me, but this ride was fine. I was most concerned that the ride would tip us forward, but it barely does at all. I loved the island smell and I lucked out with B2. Towards the end of the row, but everything looked pretty straight to me.

After DH returned, we wandered the Figment exit play area before his FP. Then DS2 and I rode Figment twice. Once with (unneeded) FP. It’s a cute little ride. I knew to hold my breath for the smell. DS2 wasn’t phased by it. I loved the ending scene.

I originally planned to get caramel in Germany and hear part of the Broadway show in America, but the Karamel line was long earlier in the afternoon and I didn’t feel like walking that much anymore. So went popped into Club Cool and went to Mexico for 3 Caballeros. What a weird little ride. The characters seem so disjointed with the footage of Mexico. The small world style decorations were really cute and I loved the fireworks at the end, but it doesn’t seem to fit all together for me. I would love to see a Coco refurb. I don’t think we’ll be back unless they do.

Since we left pretty early in the evening, and MK was open a bit later, I was able to get a FP for Splash and it went down, so we got an anytime FP for the next day. Ironically, it was the day when we least needed it, our 2nd AK day. (But stay tuned, because it turns out to be a big bonus!)

Unpopular opinion alert: DH and I weren’t that into Epcot. We enjoyed Living with the Land and the tanks at Nemo, but other than that, the ‘educational’ aspects don’t really appeal to us. We are at a theme park and we want all things fantasy and imagination! So we really understand the appeal for park hoppers now. If we had them, we definitely would have hopped yesterday and finished the night at MK. Epcot to us is a great place to hop for 2 hours, eat, and maybe do 2-3 things and then head somewhere else. You can only eat so much in one day, so it was hard to fill a single day and I spent a big chunk of the afternoon just resting.

Daily step count: 19.741
Characters hugged: 5
Photo pass photos taken: 67
Crowd Level: 3 (Food lines were also pretty short)


Loving your trip report!!! Sounds like a great time!!!

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Day 5: AK

Animal Kingdom had emh today, so it wasn’t originally our planned park but after I changed things around a dozen times, it made the most sense for us to forge ahead and at least plan our FP well.

We weren’t at the front of the 9 am entrance group, but we didn’t care because we were headed to Dinoland. We rode triceratops spin and then looked at the dinosaurs on the cretaceous trail and over by the dinosaur ride.

We had Mickey & Minnie FP for 9:20 and were very careful not to tap in early. We gave them more hugs and told them what a great trip we’ve had. It was cute to see how shy DS2 was for the first character greeting and how he runs right to them now.

We had safari FP for 11:55. That was the earliest I could get it when planning 30 days out, so we were excited to use our anytime at 9:45 instead. We had another great safari. Saw a bunch of hippos and several more elephants, including a baby. We had to skip the gorilla trail and never got back to it.

We were hungry but it was only 10:30, so we grabbed a mickey pretzel, which we gobbled before heading to the Nemo show. We had fp so we had to arrive by 10:45. We got seats down front which was nice, but I doubt the FP was necessary. And some of the characters went behind us onto the landing between the two sections and DS2 couldn’t see them from there.

Here’s where the beauty of that anytime FP comes in. I had read about the FOP drop, but knew that we wouldn’t want to give up our safari FP so we’d come to terms with not being able to ride. But we’d already ridden the safari with anytime FP so now it wasn’t needed!

I had my phone out and brightness turned way down so I could look for FOP same day FP at 11:01. I started modifying and refreshing the time on our safari FP a couple minutes early. Since the title starts with Avatar, it’s the first on the list which was nice, so I only had to scroll a tiny bit each time I refreshed the time. As the show opened, they appeared and I grabbed two for 12:15, modifying them 5 minutes earlier. They were completely gone within 2 or 3 minutes.

We mobile ordered lunch at flame tree (along with everyone else). DH went straight to Pandora after I changed DS2’s diaper, so he asked me to wrap up his sandwich. So I was ‘that lady’ in the mobile order line with a stroller, carrying the tray out with one hand. An older gentleman called me super mom and everybody was really nice about me taking up so much space.

Our order didn’t come with the milk or the applesauce that DS2 was supposed to get. I was able to ask a CM to get it for us since you can’t walk away from your food over there. The birds are too intense. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize we were also missing the applesauce, so we never got that.

DH came back from Pandora just as we were finishing eating. Since he went at the very beginning of the window, we didn’t actually need to us rider swap. He took DS2 to ride triceratops spin again. It was a 20 minute wait at that point, but he picked that over seeing more animals.

We were both a little worried that the FP line at noon would have a wait since we’d found that true on other rides, but we both walked straight through until you’re waiting for the next available link chamber.

Man, fop is incredible! It’s so much better than soarin! There are a few intense moments but it was never too much for me. And it was all so beautiful, that I just kept wanting to look around. I totally see why people want to ride this multiple times. Still wouldn’t wait more than an hour though.

We left the park right after this. DS2 was later than usual for his nap, so we decided to let him sleep as long as he wanted. By 5, he was back up and we were heading to Animal Kingdom Lodge. The lobby got an ooooh from him as we walked in. We went out to the Savannah and then wandered a bit before having dinner at the Mara. I got the falafel dish. It was better at Morocco, but I still enjoyed it. DH got the crispy chicken sandwich, which is big enough for two people to share.

We were back at the apartment by 7:30 and feeling completely wiped out. And even though we’re having a great time, we’re kinda ready to be home and back in our usual routine with DS2. He’s done really well, but the apartment is tiny and he’s constantly trying to dig into suitcases or pull stuff off of tables.

We spent the evening relaxing and getting our stuff together for our final (half) day at Disney World.

Daily step count: 13, 864
Characters hugged: 2
Photo pass photos taken: 26
Crowd Level: 10 (We survived quite well with our FP and mobile ordering, especially since it was our 2nd AK day and we weren’t trying to do everything.)


Rock on “Disney Queen”

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Such a great report! Thanks for sharing!

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I love your ears!!!

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This is such a great report! Thank you so much for all of the details and insight!

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Day 6: Our Final Day :frowning_face: HS

While I would have liked to end our trip seeing OUAT and HEA in MK, we were heading to my grandparents house mid-day, so that wasn’t an option and HS was definitely going to be a half day park for us and lower on our priority list, so it made sense to leave it for last. When I first starting planning, we were going to do 4 days and I was thinking of skipping HS entirely for a 2nd MK day. I’m glad I didn’t, because DS2 loved TSL.

It was going to rain all day, but we were packing up the apartment the night before, so I forgot to pull out my sandals. DH and I ended up walking around with wet sneakers, but we tried to avoid the puddles when we could. I’m so glad we bought real raincoats instead of ponchos!

We entered the park at 8:30. At 8:45, the CMs started walking us to TSL. We had TSM FP and someone had suggested that we could rope drop AS2 and still get to TSM without too much of a wait, so that was our plan. We rode Aliens 3 times in a row! The first time, they didn’t make the ‘stay seated if you want to ride again’ announcement, so we had to loop back around, but they did the next time. We could have ridden more than 3 times, but I wanted to do TSM too. It’s a really cute little ride!

We exited Aliens and headed to TSM right at 9 (technical park opening). TSM was still a walk on and we had a blast, so we jumped back in line again. DH ran to the restroom first, so that held us up a minute. A few more people were in line this time, so we had maybe a 15 minute wait. At this point they were sending FP people up the stairs after Mr Potato Head (which is what we did the first time) but they sent us into a 2nd room instead with big 3D Andy’s room elements, so that was neat to see. You walk through the door of his closet. Definitely adds to the feeling of being a toy and it gave DS2 plenty to look at. He went through the whole queue calling out the colors he saw.

We walked to Launch Bay, where I left DH and DS2 to ride Star Tours. Since it was raining, we didn’t end up getting a Star Wars family photo (and I never put my ears on), which was a bummer. I only saw one photo pass photographer out and he was tucked under an awning of a building. But I guess we’ll save it for May the 4th. Star Tours is cute, but it’s our least favorite of the simulator rides we did. FOP is insanely good and Soarin is also better than Star Tours, although big SW fans might not agree on that one.

While I did ST, DH and DS2 met Pluto again outside Launch Bay. He said they also saw some of the storm troopers, but I think they canceled all the little outdoor shows while we were there. There was no one else in line behind them for Pluto, so they got to hang out with him for a while. But DS2 still wanted another hug, so I got in line with him when DH headed to ST too. We also whipped through the Launch Bay galleries and then headed to Beauty & the Beast show. I had planned for DH to have some free time here, but he ended up coming to meet us and sliding in right before the show.

DS2 hasn’t seen B&TB yet, although I did try to introduce it to him through a Golden book and some of the music. When we did ETWB earlier this week, he left asking for Beast. Then we ate in his castle and I saw Beast in the parade and took a picture for him. So when I told him we were going to see Belle and the Beast do a show, he was very excited. Initially he thought he would get to hug Beast (kid loves a character greeting, who would have thought!) but I explained that they were going to tell us their story instead.

I enjoyed the show, but I wish it could be done in a theater like Nemo, where they could incorporate more lighting and elements to make the fighting more realistic.

After Beauty and the Beast, we headed back to TSL to use the grace period of our TSM FP for our 3rd ride through. We enjoyed TSM more than Buzz in MK. I found the laser difficult to aim, but the 3D games were tons of fun. I thought the two rides would be too similar, but we enjoyed them both.

At this point, we considered doing Walt Disney Presents and getting food on the road, but I was pretty hungry, so I decided to go ahead with Woody’s Lunchbox as planned. I went to the counter and mobile ordered, because I ran ahead of DH and didn’t have my credit card on me. Our order took forever. DH asked about it, because people who walked up behind us to order were getting their food before us. Turns out customized orders take a ridiculously long time. I asked for no pickle on my brisket melt. I asked if I could un-customize my sandwich (I thought DH might eat some of it if it didn’t have pickle) and that got us our food quickly. So word to the wise and everyone else in the room (as my French prof would say): Don’t customize your order unless you have to or unless you intend to hit the ‘i’m here’ button while riding TSM like someone else must have. There was a big order sitting off to the side the whole time we were waiting. Not sure I’d want my food to be cold though. The chocolate lunch box tart is very good and I really liked the soup. The sandwiches were good, but nothing super exciting.

We walked through Walt Disney Presents. I really liked the displays and wanted to extend the Disney magic as much as possible. I also wanted to warm up a little bit after sitting outside in the cold to eat. I think DH just wanted to get on the road at the point.

Daily step count: 10k (hit as we were exiting)
Characters hugged: 1 (twice)
Photo pass photos taken: 24
Crowd Level: 1 (Although we didn’t wait standby for anything after 9:30 other than B&TB.

That’s it, folks! I’ll have one more installment of final thoughts. The earliest I think we could be back in WDW is winter of 2020. I’m sure I won’t be able to help myself when it comes to pre-planning that trip, but it will all be a fantasy for a while. Hopefully we can convince the grandmas to come with us next time!


Editing all of the above days to add the actual CL experienced.