Christmas on the Wonder and New Years in the Studios (P1)

Well after having two flights cancelled on us, we finally got off the ground and to Orlando after a few hours layover in Chicago. We checked into the Carribbean Beach Resort at 2am Tuesday…a good 26hr journey and without much sleep. Also managed to catch a lunar eclipse as we got settled into our room which was awesome as I’ve seen a solar eclipse but never a lunar.

Anyway, so we get into our room which was like 15ft from the areas bus stop…Sweeeeet! and it is awesome! We chose a Pirate themed room and it was just nifty!

The chest of drawers were chests and the fridge was a barrel…very well themed. We finally get settled and get off to sleep so we can face MK (Magic Kingdom) early in the morning.

Our first stop was to get to the ticket office and purchase our Annual Passes (for both DLR and WDW). I’ve not seen a smile on my husband’s face that big in a long time! You’d think he’d just won the lottery!

Mark and our Annual Passes

From there we entered Main Street USA, took lots of photos and headed to Its A Small World which is our 7yr old son’s (Gage) favorite ride. We met Peter Pan who was the first to sign Mark’s Vinylmation for this trip (he plans to do one for each trip) and Lady Trumane, Anastasia and Drusilla who signed my black ‘Villan’ Vinylmation.

Gage infront of Its A Small World

We stayed in Fantasyland doing Dumbo, Pooh Bear, Haunted Mansion, the River Boat…had a lovely lunch next to HM at the Columbia Harbour House (counter/quick service) which have GREAT chicken fingers and fish.

Then we headed into Tomorrowland where Gage joined in with Stitch, Chip & Dale at Stitch’s dance party before we hopped aboard the People Mover/TTA. We also bumped into Buzz Lightyear before heading over to watch the Once Upon A Christmas parade which had a preshow of a woman who’d lost her little girl and was running up and down the parade route looking for her, calling her name and asking if anyone had seen a little blonde girl in a pink shirt. As a parent with a small child it was heartbreaking and she did find her, she was fine…but you have to think…just HOW many little blonde girls at WDW are in pink shirts?!

For some reason this parade just didn’t do much for me. Could’ve been we were standing in a tight spot as it was packed and we waited too long to get a space and I was uncomfortable, but really it just seemed to drag on for me. I love parades but this one, I dunno, just didn’t sit right, felt a bit bland I guess. The Marching Soldiers/Nutcrackers were the BEST though!

Donald and Daisy in Once Upon A Christmas Parade

We then hopped aboard the Jungle Cruise and I SWEAR the REAL Santa was in line with us! Complete with a surfing Santa shirt!

REAL Santa!?!?

Of course either after or before the Jungle Cruise you HAVE to have……..say it with me folks…DOLE WHIP!!!

orange whip with pineapple juice

So once we left the park we got a boat to take us to the Poly and we had dinner at Ohana. While waiting for our table to be ready we saw Goofy and Pluto and had our photo taken with Minnie & Mickey. We were so tired our appetites were not up to par but we tried to enjoy the food as best we could.

The waitress brought around some lovely bread and then huge skewers of different meats that are cooked on these spitfires.

Needless to say we had no room to try and tackle this wonderul looking desert…next time! ๐Ÿ™‚

On Day 2 we tackle the Studios! After getting there two hours before rope drop…thinking that it opened at 8am and not 9am…we headed up to the front of the crowd and as soon as the rope hit the ground Mark went running (well walking fast right behind the CM in the lead holding ppl back) and was the first person at the Toy Story Mania Fast Pass machines while Gage and I got into the StandBy line. This is basically what you have to do if you want to ride this attraction twice and not wait for 3hrs in line. We were in the like second group out and had passes for within the hour. After this we always head across the way to meet Buzz and/or Woody. That morning it was just Buzz there but on another visit both of the boys were there.

One mission I had, thanks to Lou Mongello, was to find the Writer’s Stop and have a Carrot Cake Cookie. This is a new FAVE hangout of mine now. Its just so quant and nice and comfy…almost like a coffee shop on campus. I could just sit there for ages relaxing. Anyway, this cookie was FAB!! Ok I could’ve shared it but being as neither Mark nor Gage like carrot cake I was happy to keep it all to myself but I found it a little too much due to the richness.

Since everyone gets a kick of photos of me eating....

We then headed to our usual M&G spot in the studios, inside the Art of Animation building (if you want to go straight to the characters go through the exit via the store) and there we met Lotso (yes he really does smell of strawberries; its like he’s eaten a LOAD of Strawberry Shortcake dolls!), Mr Incredible and Frozone and Mickey in his Fantasia outfit. We also went into One Man’s Dream which was loaded with like the history of Disney and Mickey. It was great. Even a mini diorama of “Granny’s Cabin” that Walt made himself.

Me and some original MMC stuff ๐Ÿ™‚

We made our way back to the main street for one of the last Block Party Bash parades. Last time we had Toy Story stop in front of us, this time it was Monsters, Inc. also this time Gage was brave enough to get up and dance with the CMs ๐Ÿ™‚

Gage dancing with a CM in the BPB parade

We continued on with all the usual attractions that we do, Great Movie Ride, Muppets 4D, Aerosmith, Tower of Terror. Eventually it was time for my favorite park show, Fantasmic! I just think its a greatย  show but I absolutely LOVE the music!! However, for some reason the snake didn’t move around chasing after Mickey…After that we went for dinner at one of our favorite places…50s Prime Time! Cousin Wendy served us and our cousins from Florida sat next to us. I had Aunt Liz’s Fried Chicken and OMG Aunt Liz makes some DELICIOUS fried chicken!! I also saw that they had Dan Aykroyd’s Chardonnay and I had a glass of that which went RIGHT to my head as always.

Aunt Liz's Fried Chicken

Now this fried chicken, you get HALF a chicken, I was not expecting that but I gobbled it down like no one’s business. It also comes with some lovely mashed potatoes and sweet corn. The meatloaf is also one of our favorites. We both had it last time but only Mark had it this time as I wanted some downhome fried chicken and that’s exactly what I got!

Dad's Traditional Meatloaf

The only complaint I have about the meatloaf is that you just don’t get enough, but I suppose if you asked for more they’d give you some more. But it is just lovely. Very tender and juicy.

 

Me and some of Danny's wine

The desert was also lovely. I had the cheesecake, Mark had the smores (not shmoes) and Gage had the kids ‘make your own sundae’. We were so stuffed though we couldn’t finish our deserts. Which is a shame but OMG that chicken was to DIE for…and well I guess it did. ๐Ÿ˜›

After dinner we headed over to see the Osbourne Family Lights. We could hear Phineas & Ferb talking and were like “Shit! Where are they?” thinking there was some sort of lighting show going on. But no, it was just an audio ofย  a ‘radio broadcast’ about the lights and such. It was good though, even Doof had a part. The lights were just amazing! Although at this point I was so sick and tired of hearing Christmas music but the dancing lights along with them were just…WOW!

On with Day 3!

We started the day off with breakfast at Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary Resort. I was so excited because they had grits and scrambled eggs and biscuits! True I did eat with my eyes too much and put way too much on my plate, but there ya go. Go without some of your fave foods for nearly 2yrs and you just want to bathe in it.

 

scrambled eggs, grits, biscuit and bacon MMMMMMMMM

This place I did finish, the 2nd one was a bit too much, hehe. We really enjoyed this and plan to have dinner there next time. Gage being the fussy eatter he is, does good with buffets and loves fixing his own plate.

During our meal we were visited by Goofy, Mickey, Minnie, Pluto and Donald. Mark was talking to Donald who was eyeing up his pin lanyard and when he noticed there were no Donald pins he got very angry. This is one duck who has an ego issue ineed. He put his hand in Mark’s face and demanded that he bow down to him. So Mark got on his knees and did the “I’m not worthy” bow, and that was good enough for Donald.

Mark bowing down to Donald

The food was great and its always wonderful to be in the presence of the Fab Five. What we also loved was that they were all in chef outfits. We love to meet all the characters in different outfits, so much so that we’ll bypass Mickey if we’ve already had our photo with him in ‘that’ outfit on that trip.

After the meal we walked to the MK entrance rather than the monorail as it was a lovely day and the monorail had other stops to make before going to the MK terminal. We went right to ToonTown and let Gage ride Goofy’s Barnstormer as that is one of his fave rides and since it had no line we just walked right on. Then we caught up with Mark in Mickey’s Judging Tent and saw him and Minnie. As always Minnie gave Gage a kiss and Micky was not impressed and told Gage that he was watching him. Shame that they’re going to tear down ToonTown for the Fantasyland expansion. It is such a good area and wonderfully themed. We will miss it. But at least its said that the Barnstormer is staying put.

It was a quick morning in the MK as we had to get back to our resort for the Cruise Line bus to pick us up and take us to Canaveral to board the Disney wonder!

 

Only 2 Days Till Christmas

 

 

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