What an eventful trip we had! And it all started a month before we left. If you remember I posted back in May about the trouble I had getting tickets because I bought the gift cards at Fry's. Well, my story didn't get any easier. As a recap in case you didn't read about my ticket dilemma, I had bought gift cards at Fry's to earn fuel points, then the price increase happened. I ended up needing to buy our passes over the phone because I had 24 gift cards to use. I was told that my order was on hold for 48 hrs then our tickets would be sent out to us. A week and a half later we still didn't have them so I called and was told that my order had been denied. Two problems with that, I didn't have the gift cards anymore because I threw them away after I used them and I didn't want to pay the higher price. It's a long story but the bottom line is that I spoke with more than a dozen people over 3 1/2 weeks time, was told that "we are at the end of the line and can't help you" when they had $1200 of my money and I didn't have tickets, spent hours on the phone and told that they wouldn't do anything for me to make up for the hassle I had. So I had finally been given an order number to give at the ticket booth. So, on the afternoon of Fri, June 15th, we got our tickets and tried to get into the park. We were told at the gate that our tickets had expired in March . DH called Lauren, the girl that I had been dealing with for the most part and had to leave her a message. We went back to the ticket booth and while the CM was getting his lead I called Lauren and left another message. I was so mad I was shaking. I explained the story to Leah and she ended up refunding those tickets, selling us 3 day PHs and comping us 2 day PHs. We ended up getting $60 back which I thought was a nice compensation for all the hassle and frustration I had. The next morning while I was on Space my phone rang. I listened to the voice mail and it was Lisa from Disney Investigation. She asked me what my story was and I told her what I had been thru and what our trip was for and how all of this had put a damper on it. She asked me to meet her at City Hall. They aren't used to seeing someone from Disney Investigation there because they were all a little on edge. It's like they knew something big had happened. But we ended up getting passes for 5 rides but they couldn't be in Carsland or Matterhorn. We ended up getting VIP seating for World of Color which was awesome! It was so nice to be able to walk up 10 min. before and have seats where we could see everything. We didn't use the other passes because it just wasn't busy on Sat. But it was fine because it was the thought that counted. I really felt she cared about what I had gone thru and that's what really mattered to me. She also gave us $100 in food vouchers which was a huge bonus . As I was telling her my story she gasped a little when I said that I was told they were at the end of the line and couldn't do anything for me and also that they wouldn't do anything for me as compensation for my troubles. She really restored my faith in Disney that they do care about the guests. So we went about our day. After all my hassle of getting our tickets originally the CM told me to call and tell them what I had been thru. When I did the CM gave us VIP seating for Aladdin and we were going to watch it on Sat. at 4:30. We got in and had fabulous seats. Then after they sang, "A Whole New World", the lights came on and said that due to technical difficulties the show had been cancelled . It was just one more thing added to our already difficult time. Luckily, we didn't have anymore issues like that the rest of our trip.
So, the reason for our trip was a family reunion that turned into a memorial/celebration trip for my son that passed away last year. We had shirts made and we all wore them on Sat. There were 20 of us. We got so many compliments and comments on them from other guests and CMs. Here's our group:
It was so fun to be there and remember our sweet boy. I cried when I rode Screamin' because it was his favorite ride and I never got to ride it with him because I was pregnant last time.
Friday and Saturday were definitely the least crowded days. We practically walked on everything. On Fri., our longest wait was for Dumbo and that was only 20 min. That's one where we always wait that long, so for a Fri night in the summer I thought it was great. We didn't attempt Carsland either of these days because we didn't have FPs. We got to see the Soundsational Parade and I really liked it. Our baby (21 mo) really liked it too. He loved seeing all the characters and listening to the music. We rode STs for the first time since the redo and really enjoyed it. My 10 yr. old son was the spy so that was a fun surprise to have since we didn't know it was coming. We did the baby swap and he ended up being it again when he went with DH. We also went on Little Mermaid for the first time and really liked it too. Our baby really liked it. When we got off, we walked out, just past the CM and he turned around to get back on. The CM laughed and was talking to him about wanting to go again and Troy blew him a kiss. The CM then asked if we wanted to ride it again . That happened a few times. On Fri. night we were at the Little Green Men Store and a CM was talking to Troy. He was being a flirt, of course, and when we were leaving he blew her a kiss. She said for that he needed something. She got us all "We're Celebrating" buttons and I told her that we were celebrating. We ended up telling her about our son who passed away and she told us she, too, was going thru the morning process because her DSs best friend had just died. She said his favorite color was green and I said that was Rheese's too. She had a green Mickey head pin on her lanyard and ended up giving it to me. On Sat. night we had Girardelli's ice cream. Yummy! DH and I shared the Midnight Reverie (I think that's what it was called) and I really liked it. I think that was the first time for me eating ice cream at the park.
We took Sun. off to go to the beach.
Monday was crazy! We went to DCA first thing and got our FPs for RSR. They were good for 3:30 but it was so hot at 3:30 we decided to come back later when it was cooler. We went back about 7:30 and the FP line was about an hour and a half. Since we had to do baby swap we asked if we could wait in line with our son and then switch when we got up there so we didn't have to wait in it twice. They said no. So when the rest of our group was about to get on they texted us so we could get in line again. The end of the line was past Luigi's so when they got done we were up to where we couldn't enter with our baby and they took him. The line actually ended up only being about 45 min. each time which was a lot better than an hour and a half each time. It was a lot of fun and we all really enjoyed it. It even had that new car smell . I didn't really like the paint job part though because the smell was too realistic and too much for me but that's a little critique that doesn't change my opinion of the ride. It was amazing at how it really felt like I was riding thru the AZ/UT desert, just minus the heat. We also went on Mater because the line was only 20 min. It was ok. If the line had been any longer my opinion probably would have dropped and if it had been shorter it would have gone up. It's one of those rides that was fun to do but I don't want to wait in line for it. We saw the Newsies and I thought that was a really cute show. It was fun to have Mickey talk in it. The only thing I would have changed was that I thought Mickey should have been the old version like in the Storytellers statue. I would definitely stop to watch that one again. It was so funny, when we got to DCA in the morning and had walked to the end of BVS, DH said, "Did they change something?" I think my jaw dropped to the ground. I said, "Um, ya, the whole thing." I just had to laugh.
Tues was still really busy but seemed a tad better than Mon. It was the first time in a very long time that we had to wait in line for Pirates but it was only about 20 min and seemed to go really fast. No line was terrible, just more than usual. We went to see Mickey at his house in ToonTown. That had to be the best visit ever because of my baby. He LOVED meeting Mickey Mouse. He gave him lots of kisses and high fives and knuckles. After we did pictures, Troy didn't want to leave him so Mickey ended up holding his hand and walking him to the door. I really wish I would have had that on video. He gave him another kiss and hug and blew him a kiss as we were walking out the door.
We got to go in to Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln and see Voices of Liberty. After their teaser at the entrance they talked to us and asked us where we were from and what our baby's name was. It was fun when they mentioned him when they were getting ready to sing the 50 states song. That was one of those fun Disney Magic moments. We really loved their singing and I really enjoyed Lincoln. I haven't seen it since the early 90s and I didn't remember much of it. My son's favorite president was Lincoln and he had wanted to see it so bad but never got to so this was a must do in his memory. I really felt like he was there watching it with us. Later that night we had the Redd's Apple Freeze, dill pickle popcorn and the grape drink from the Cones. We all liked all of them. I hope they still have them the next time we go but I'm afraid that at least one thing will be missing. We also had the Earthquake from Girardelli's. That was yummy and very fun to eat. We gobbled it up quickly .
On Wed. we decided to go to DCA again first and get FPs for RSRs again and go on Luigi's. We got right to Luigi's while one of my DSs got FPs. Luigi's took about 40 min. to get on. It was also ok. I wish they didn't have the beach balls because they were a distraction. I would have liked to have tried to move more and focus on flying instead of the balls. I know we could have ignored them but when the baby wants the ball that's what you get . I thought it was too short. Wish it would have been a little longer but then the line would have been a lot longer. Glad we rode it though. We took Troy into Disney Junior, or whatever it is called now, and it was fun to see him react to his shows brought to life. We went to get our Disney Visa photo and it was Stitch. We were the last group there. I didn't know how Troy would react because he's never seen Stitch but he loved him too. He gave him as many kisses, high fives and knuckles that he gave to Mickey and Stitch had to walk him out too. It was very cute. In the past we were able to use the voucher for any photo on our photopass but this time they wouldn't let us. It had to be of Stitch. I was a little bummed because we didn't have all of our kids. They didn't want to go get their picture taken so we just took the baby but I didn't really care because I was just going to use it for a different photo of the family but no. Oh, well, it turned out cute.
That night we finally got to see the fireworks. It was the first time seeing this show and I really liked them. I loved seeing Dumbo fly thru the air. The music was great and I liked the colors on the castle. We walked up about 10 min. before they started and got a pretty good spot to watch. We were on the Tomorrowland side of the hub right about even with the Partners statue. Our most restricted view was of the castle but it was fine. I didn't want to campout for a better spot.
There was only one thing we didn't get to do that I really wanted to and that was walk thru Sleeping Beauty's Castle. I haven't gotten to do that since it re-opened and was bummed but it just didn't work out.
I got to eat all the food I was wanting to. I loved the Fried Green Tomato sandwich from Hungry Bear and their onion rings were yummy. I tasted the sweet potato fries and they were delish too. I had the Caprese sandwich from Jolly Holiday and thought it was good but needed more tomatoes and mozzerella. I finally had a Matterhorn Macaroon and loved it. I will have to get one every trip now. I couldn't believe how big they are. I had my Mint Julep, yummy bacon wrapped asparagus, a bite of a Dole Whip, my broccoli-cheese soup from the Wharf and treats from the Cozy Cone. I was very happy and so was my tummy.
Oh, we had issues with our balloons. On Fri. we got our son a green balloon. The next day by about noon the ear had gone down so we exchanged it for another green one. By the end of the night it had gone down too. By that time they just had the light up ones so we decided to wait until Mon. On Mon we exchanged it for a blue one. The next day it was down so we exchanged it for a purple one. It lasted about 2 hrs. but this time it was the clear part that deflated so we exchanged it for a light blue one and it lasted for over a week after we got home. It would have lasted longer but it got hit by the ceiling fan and popped. I'm glad they exchange them because they are expensive. The colors we had problems with were all the transparent colors but the opaque color lasted. Don't know if it has anything to do with it but I found that interesting.
We had such a fun trip. It's kinda weird that a trip we had been planning for 3 yrs. has been over for a month. Don't know when we'll be able to go back but I can't wait.