Tuesday, October 2, 2012

2012 WDW & Disney Cruise Vacation - Day 3

Day Three: Today we did not need to wake up as early as we did the day before; however, we still wanted to get to Hollywood Studios in time for opening. Toy Story Mania can get very busy and have a very long line so we wanted to ride it first thing and grab fast passes. We left the room after eating a quick snack and headed to the bus stop at about a quarter after 8. Once again, we got lucky and a bus came very quickly. We were soon at Hollywood Studios waiting for opening. We have a Disney Visa and wanted to redeem our reward dollars while on vacation but did not get a reward card before we left for vacation. While we were standing in line I went to the customer service window and within a few minutes was handed a reward card, all I had to do was call to get it activated. Jonathan held our place in line while I did this so I met back up with him and Ryan and shortly we were let into the park. We made a quick dash to Toy Story Mania, as most people were doing, and grabbed our fast passes. Then we got in line to ride. We only waited for a few minutes (5 to 10 minutes) and were on the ride. We enjoy this ride but probably prefer Buzz Lightyear. Ryan sat with me for this go around and Jonathan easily beat us.

Jonathan and Ryan in front of Mickey's hat.

After riding we walked down to Starring Rolls to grab some breakfast (I was starving!). I got a cheese danish and Jonathan got a cherry danish, we just love the danishes at Disney World, they are soooo good!!! We sat down to eat and split our food with Ryan. After our yummy breakfast we tried to decide what to do next, we did not have any real plan for the day except for lunch reservations at Le Cellier at EPCOT. Ryan really wanted to go to Disney Junior Live on Stage; however, the first show wasn’t for awhile still. We walked around and decided to go to Muppet Vision 3D. Jonathan and Ryan enjoy this show. When the show was complete we talked about going to Disney Junior but I think we were cutting it close on time so we decided to go use our fast passes at Toy Story Mania then head to EPCOT (with a promise to Ryan that we would be back and we would see Disney Junior!). Ryan rode with Jonathan this time around and I beat them on Toy Story Mania (see a pattern, lol). Ryan loves to try to shot the gun but pulling the string gets to be a bit much for his arm.

We then headed out of Hollywood Studios to the boat dock to go to EPCOT. And just missed a boat pulling away by a few minutes (we could still see the boat) so we decided to try to walk it. We hadn’t gone 10 yards from the boat dock when it started to rain and immediately turned around. I would wait for the boat rather than walk in the rain.  Thankfully we didn’t wait long for a boat and we were on a nice leisurely ride to EPCOT. We’ve never gone thru International Gateway so this was a new one for us and it put us in World Showcase, right where we needed to be for our lunch. It had stopped raining by the time we go to EPCOT, thankfully, so we were able to stay dry! We walked to Le Cellier, checked-in for our lunch reservations and I took Ryan to the bathroom. By the time we got back they had already called our name and were waiting for us. Jonathan and I really enjoy eating here, the food is really good, steaks melt in your mouth and the cheese soup and pretzel bread is so yummy! We enjoyed our lunch and were surprised to see a new cheesecake on the dessert menu. We have felt their dessert menu to be lacking in the past (nothing special) but found the cheesecake was very good and a nice way to end a great meal! And we got Ryan to eat something besides chicken nuggets and fries, he had steak and liked it as well. After lunch we were all very full!

Since we were at EPCOT we walked to Innovations to get our picture taken with the characters then to the camera spot to get our free picture for being Disney Visa card holders. We were a little sad that it was Minnie and Goofy again in the meet and greet since they were the same ones we had back in January but a free picture is a free picture.

We walked around World Showcase a bit trying to find a glass figurine that I had seen back in January. It was of Cinderella and Prince Charming and I knew I should have bought it then but didn’t and regretted it. Thankfully we did find the stand and they were still selling it. They sent me to their store in Germany so that I could fill out paperwork to have the figurine sent home (for free) that way we wouldn’t break it (it was waiting for me when we got home and in one piece).

While walking around World Showcase Ryan got to play the drums.  He loves playing the "bum bum bums" as he calls them. 


We made our way back over to the International Gateway and just missed the boat again, grr! We were too tired to walk back to Hollywood Studios so we waited for the boat. I wanted to make it back to Hollywood Studios in time to watch the parade but since we missed the boat, that didn’t happen. So once we got back to Hollywood Studios we headed to Disney Junior, Ryan was so excited! He really enjoyed watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Handy Manny, Little Einsteins and Jake and the Neverland Pirates. He loves those shows! We hopped in line to meet Jake after a quick bathroom break and Ryan was so shy. Little stinker was so excited about meeting Jake but wouldn’t really go very close to him (oh the differences 7 months can make, lol).

Then we went and watched the Voyage of the Little Mermaid. Ryan was pretty sleepy so this gave him some quiet time in the dark. We had picked up fast passes for Toy Story Mania after our last ride on it but they had expired. Jonathan wanted to ride it again so he went and asked if we could still use them. They said yes we could because they had some issues with the fast passes today and were going to continue to accept them (lesson here, never hurts to ask!). We rode again and Ryan wouldn’t sit with me so he sat on Jonathan’s lap. I did beat them again but their accuracy was much better than mine. We struggled with what to do next. We really thought about leaving; however, we really wanted to see the Fantasmic show. We did not get to see it back in January (it was closed for refurbishing) and Jonathan loves this show. We walked around the park trying to find a Jake costume but with no luck.  I talked Jonathan into going to watch Beauty and the Beast and I’m very happy I did. Ryan has never seen this movie but I’ve read him the story a few times. I was shocked at how much he enjoyed the show. My boy really loves his shows!!

This ate up some time but we still had awhile before Fantasmic so we went to the Great Movie Ride. Somehow we were let thru the holding area and were getting ready to get on a car but there were no seats for us so we had to wait in the loading area. The cast member working the ride pointed out the only hidden Minnie in the park to us. Jonathan really got a kick out of this, he loves the hidden Mickeys. After we were done with this ride we decided to go grab some food and then get seats for Fantasmic. I got chicken nuggets for both myself and Ryan. Jonathan was not feeling well and didn’t want anything (at that moment). It seemed to take forever to get our food (I think everyone else had the same idea) but once we did we carried our food into the amphitheater. Ryan and I ate our dinner and what do you know, Jonathan started getting hungry (I was nice and shared a little). Fantasmic was very good as always. We all enjoyed the fireworks and theatrics of the show. And Jonathan got to yell at some kids fighting in front of him, bonus for him (no idea where their parents were but one boy hit the other really hard in the head, that was Jonathan’s breaking point).

After the show, we made our way out of the park with the huge crowd and then to the buses. We waited for a little bit for a bus but it wasn’t a terrible wait. Once back at the resort I gave Ryan a bath and put him to bed and Jonathan decided to go get something to eat. He brought me back a Mickey rice krispy treat so I was happy! If we did this day again, I would change a few things. We should have spent a little more time at EPCOT and rode a few of the rides there (like Nemo and Spaceship Earth) and then gone back to Hollywood Studios. We did not stay up long because we were tired and excited for tomorrow. Tomorrow was cruise day!

Final thoughts on our Disney Portion of Vacation: just a few final comments I wanted to make. We absolutely LOVE Disney World! Nothing compares to it. I don’t understand how someone couldn’t like Disney World and if they don’t they are going about it in all the wrong ways, lol (you know who you are!). I wish I could plan a magical vacation for everyone but what works for some might not work for others. Anyway, Port Orleans Riverside Resort was beautiful and I’m sure we will stay there again. The room was very adequate for our needs. We did enjoy being just a short walk away from the main area rather than a long walk like it is at the Caribbean Beach Resort. I’m sure we will stay here on a future trip again. Ryan absolutely loved the parks! He talks about Disney World every single day (multiple times a day). He loved the rides, the characters, the parades and just all around being there in the atmosphere. To us, this is what it’s all about, making wonderful family memories and spending time together. Personally, our family does much better with a set plan. I will make sure we always have one in advance now. The day we spent at Hollywood Studios and EPCOT could have been done much better and I feel we wasted a lot of time (which drives me crazy since there are so many fun things we could have done). Hollywood Studios is not an all day park for us so we will have to plan better next time (see even a Disney veteran can make mistakes, well at least when pushed by your spouse to not have a plan for the day, lol). We can’t wait to go back to Disney World to see the new Fantasyland expansion at the Magic Kingdom. But with baby #2 on the way I’m not sure when we will get back down there (hopefully we will be able to go sometime after everything opens up in 2014).

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