Travel Dates: March 21-27, 2012
Travel Method: Car/Plane
Southwest Airlines- SMF (Sacramento) to SNA (Santa Ana/Orange County)
Resort: Del Sol Inn (across the street to the Disneyland entrance)
Accommodations: King room (Room # 230)
Tickets: Premium Annual Passes
DLR Experience Represented in Group: 3-4 visits each
Comments: Our two-year anniversary and Ferron’s Birthday!
Cast of Characters: Me (22)- character-loving, food eating, planner, and people person
Ferron (almost 22)- Coaster-loving, Dole Whip Float drinking, pin trader
The pre-trip planning:
Sometime back in January Ferron mentioned to me that he wanted to go to DL again for our anniversary. What kind of person would I be to tell him no? So we started crunching numbers and decided that we would be able to go like we wanted. Of course I started looking at different hotels, trip packages, and consulting with a fellow Disney fanatic about our plans. In the end we decided that it was a better deal for us to stay at the Del Sol Inn and get APs than to stay at a pricier hotel and get park-hoppers like we did last time. One of the days we were going to be there was a blockout day for the deluxe pass which we were considering. However, we were also considering going during the holidays and decided that a premium AP would be best. Not only that, but for the time being, the Premium AP discount definitely played a part in our decision. Because we were going for a couple of special occasions we knew we wanted to do something a little nicer for dinner/lunch than the McDonalds up the street. We had always wanted to try P.F. Changs and so I made a reservation for dinner. Another place I had wanted to try was the Big Thunder Ranch BBQ. Based on recommendations on this board, we decided it wasn’t worth the extra $$ to pay for dinner so I made a reservation for lunch. With Ferron’s birthday coming up shortly after our trip (it’s coming up this Saturday actually!), we signed up for a Patina gift certificate to use at Tortilla Joe’s and made a lunch reservation.
Day 1: Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Park Hours: DL Closed at Midnight, DCA at 9pm
Plan: Travel, hit up Indy, Star Tours, and eat a hand-dipped corn dog
What Actually Happened:
My day started off around 8am as I had a field test for business at school and then I went to my second class and took a quiz. As soon as I was done, I booked it out of class and was home by 9:20. I was proud of us because we actually left the house by 9:45 and were finally on our way to the Sacramento Airport (SMF). Thank goodness we had packed the car the night before (1)!! Around 10 we realized that we were hungry so we stopped at McDonalds and ordered breakfast. Ferron ordered a sausage biscuit and hashbrown and I ordered a #6- sausage, egg, and cheese McGriddle. Our total- $10.37.
At 12:10 we finally arrived at SMF after what seemed like forever (I just wanted to BE there!!). At this point I was very impatient as I just wanted to see The Mouse! We parked in long-term economy parking. I was told/had heard that the new set up at SMF was slightly confusing to those who don’t frequent the airport, but we didn’t find it confusing at all. As long as you can read, you should be okay! While I waited in line to check our bags, Ferron got our boarding passes. He got boarding pass A39 and I got boarding pass B32! We asked the person at the counter about it and she said that it was because someone had cancelled their boarding pass right before Ferron got his. It took us about 20 minutes to get all the way through security to our gate. By now it was about 12:40. The flight before ours was delayed by 20 minutes pushing ours back by 5 minutes. We started boarding our flight around 2:15 and arrived right on time. As always I requested Sprite. Unfortunately they didn’t give us a choice of pretzels or peanuts, so we both got peanuts which I promptly gave to Ferron. Once we arrived at John Wayne (SNA) we headed to baggage claim. I then texted our friend who was picking us up. I am SO glad we didn’t have to ride Super Shuttle this time!
Around 4:45ish we arrived at the Del Sol Inn. The lobby was surprisingly nice. It took us a while to check in because we split the room on 2 different cards. We requested a King room because it was just the 2 of us and were given room 203. When arrived at our room the keys didn’t work so Ferron had to go back to the office to request another pair. Apparently the door gets stuck from time to time, but this time it all worked out. I was pleasantly surprised based on all of the bad reviews on this board. The room was clean and had adequate space (round table, desk, counter space, etc.). None of the appliances were plugged in, so we had to do that which I thought was odd, but not a huge deal. The room had a safe which was an extra cost to the room if we used it (we did not). The bathroom was quite small. In order to shut the door, you had to walk all the way in and then shut the rood. The shower head looked older, but had nice water pressure.
Half way through unpacking we realize that Ferron left his backpack (computer, Nintendo DS, and our paper tickets) in our friend’s car. We immediately called her, but unfortunately she was in class until 7:30. After panicking for a few minutes, we called guest services (2) and they were very helpful. Ferron explained what happened and because we were able to pull up our confirmation e-mail saying that we purchased our tickets on the phone, they gave Ferron a confirmation number to give to the ticket booth. At 6pm we walk to DL to get our Annual Passes (APs). Once at the ticket booth, we told the lady why we were there. The button-loving person that I am was ecstatic at what happened next: she gave me 3 buttons and Ferron an extra as an early birthday!
Finally after hours of traveling and unpacking we entered the “World of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy”. Star Tours was closed last year during our trip so we headed straight for Tomorrowland to get Fast passes (FPs)(3). Because it was around 6:30, we had to navigate around the parade crowd. We ended up with FPs with a 9:05 return time. After that, we headed to Indy which had a 25 minute wait and decided to eat instead. I had wanted a hand-dipped corn dog so we headed to the Stage Door Caf. We ordered 2 corn dog meals and a large soda to go with them. Our total came to $19.25. The cashier forgot to give us our AP discount so we got a free large drink (score!).
By the time we were done eating it was around 7 so we headed to Pirates of the Caribbean (Ferron’s favorite ride) and it was a walk-on. I thought the fog during the battle scene was a bit much. I don’t remember it ever being so much! Then, we stopped by the Haunted Mansion which was a walk-on as well, followed by Winnie the Pooh. We hadn’t ridden it last year and it was a walk-on so we thought, why not? Around 8 we wanted to walk through Fantasyland, but it was closed so we got in line for Astro Blasters. There was a 10 minute posted wait time. My score: 7,700. Ferron’s score: 181,200. At 8:20 there was a 30 minute posted wait time of Star Tours so we hopped in line and were on by 8:50. At 9pm we got back in line with our FPs and boarded 10 minutes later. After ST we got in line for Alice in Wonderland and only waited for 10 minutes. Fantasyland was open again so we did the castle walk-through which was fun because we had never done that before. We had also looked through a couple of shops. We were tired so we started heading towards Main St. We then stopped by a few of the art galleries and left the park a little after 10. After walking around all day we were thirsty and stopped by the Harbor Cove Caf to get a 2-liter bottle of water ($3.98) and walked back to our hotel. We planned for the next day and headed to bed.
Best part of the day: getting buttons
Worst part of the day: waiting over half a day to get there!!!
Day 2: Thursday, March 22, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am, DCA 10-
Plan: be at DL park opening, whatever we wanted, Lilly Belle, PF Changs
What Actually Happened:
At 6:30 my alarm went off and I hopped in the shower while Ferron got a few extra zzz’s. At 7 we headed over to breakfast which included small pastries, cereal, toast, toaster waffles, juice, and milk. We headed back to our room to get our bags/snacks for the day.
We left for the parks at 7:30am. At 8am (park opening) Indy was first on our list so we walked over to get FPs and got an 8:40 return time. Though it was a ways a way, we headed over to Space Mountain. There was a 5 minute posted wait time which we walked on to. Now, last year Ferron had fun trying to get me to go on it, but eventually I went. This year, I did it voluntarily and actually enjoyed myself. At 8:30 we walked onto the Jungle Cruise with Tour Guide Larry. His corny jokes were the perfect way to kick start the morning. Ten minutes later we were headed towards Indy to use out FPs, but it was broken down (which was the first of many times on our trip). Instead, we headed over to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad which had a posted wait time of 5 minutes. We then walked through a few shops and ended up back over by Indy... it was open! There was no wait for the FP line which was nice.
At 9:40 we got FPs for Splash Mountain. Now, the weather was semi-iffy, but there was no guarantee that it would get nicer so we decided to go for it (4). Plus, neither of us had ridden it in years since it was under referb the last time we visited. With no “real” plan we roamed New Orleans Square. I was determined to find the famous Club 33 door. Alas, we did. I was so excited! At this point we were both a tad hungry so we decided on a cinnamon roll from the Holly Jolly Bakery (5). Who was standing as we entered... Oscar! So we waived hello and proceeded to order. Our cinnamon roll came to $4.57 (+ tax and our Premium AP discount). Once we sat down, Oscar was making his rounds and came and sat at our table. It was fun to have a conversation with Disney’s own celebrity. I asked where we could get his potato soup (best. soup. ever) that Carnation Caf served and he said that we had to wait until June (sad day!).
Around 10:15 we headed towards City Hall to ask about the Lilly Belle (6) and were directed to Main St. Station. We were then told it was all booked for the day, so we hopped on the train to Tomorrowland. We had never been to Innoventions so we walked through there... I created my “dream house” and we both took pictures to see what we would look like years down the road (scary!!). Since we were in Tomorrowland, we grabbed FPs for Star Tours. As we exited Tomorrowland, we saw a PhotoPass Photographer by the Partner’s Statue and got our picture taken. There was hardly anyone in line and he took a TON of pictures (7)! At 11:10 it was almost time for our Splash FPs so we headed over towards Critter Country. We saw pin traders along the way and decided we’d stop by later. We got in line for Splash with a 2-5 minute wait. Ferron Sat in the back and I sat right in front of him. Long story short, he got soaked, I did not. Around 11:45 we rode the train from New Orleans Square to Tomorrowland. It was time for a potty break by Star Tours. It also happened to be lunch time for some of the characters as they were going on break. I saw Ariel and Cinderella- My first time seeing her! Then, as I’m looking at my phone Captain Hook stops in front of me and blows me a kiss! Though our FP return time for Star Tours wasn’t until 12:15, we were able to get in line at 12:05. We only waited in line for 10 minutes. We went to Gate C, sat in the first row, and saw Admiral Akbar. Before our trip we ordered groceries from Vons (8) (best idea ever) and scheduled a delivery for 1pm so we headed to the hotel for the delivery and some R&R. We snacked on the crackers and water we ordered and I even made a pb & j! Oh... and my nap was nice too.
2:05 rolls around and we leave the hotel and head to Disney’s California Adventure (DCA). Because DCA was under heavy construction, we entered next to Soarin’ Over California so we picked up our FPs. We also got FPs for World of Color. We got the later showing in the blue section. At 2:35 we got in line for Ariel’s Undersea Adventure which had been under construction last year. There was a posted wait time of 5 minutes. Our trip just happened to be during my spring break for school and one of my friends was at the DLR as well, so I looked for her and found her by Goofy’s Sky School. Ferron and I then walked along the Pier. Once we got to Screamin’, Ferron hopped in the single rider line while I roamed and waited. Since the carousel was right there, I hopped on for a ride. At 3:30 we walked to the Boudin Factory (really just wanted a free sample). Five minutes late we were at the Blue Sky Cellar. It was really cool to see what exactly was planned for Carsland. Our legs and feet were tired so at 4:30 we went inside for Turtle Talk with Crush (9)- a must see at DCA. After that it was time for our Soarin’ FPs. When it was over, we headed back to the hotel... stopping for a regular popcorn at Condor Flats ($3.75) on the way out.
At 6:30 we left the hotel to walk to P.F. Changs for our 7pm reservation. We thought about a taxi, but the walk was short so we decided against it. We were seated a little after 7. Prior to our arrival we had decided on the Dinner for Two ($39.99). I ordered pork dumplings (SO fantastic!), sweet and sour chicken, and red velvet cake. Ferron ordered chicken lettuce wraps (which we had an extra coupon for), Mongolian beef, and red velvet cake. We both had egg drop soup (which is one of my favorites). Ferron was slightly disappointed in his Mongolian beef because it wasn’t spicy like it should have been. We finished dinner around 8:30 and headed back to the hotel for the night.
At 9pm we decided that it was too early to be at the hotel for the night so we changed our minds and headed to DL. Star Tours was first on our list so we grabbed FPs. Ferron decided he wanted to start pin trading so we picked up a lanyard with a few pins to start with ($21.42 including $5 AP discount). At 10:15 we walked right onto Pirates. A half hour later Ferron bought more pins... including a 45th anniversary Pirates pin. At 10:55 we got in the FP lane for Star Tours... and rode it 15 minutes later. Ferron decided to put the pins on his lanyard and traded for a ’08 Minnie for myself because we graduated in 2008. Around 11:40 we started our trek down Main St. and stopped by Market House for a quick snack. We decided on a hand dipped pretzel rolled in M&Ms ($3.40 w/AP discount). We headed to the hotel and were in bed by 1am.
Best part of the day: Talking with Oscar, Star Tours, and Soarin’
Worst part of the day: None- It was great first full day at Disney!!
Day 3: Friday, March 23, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am,
Plan: Lilly Belle, Space Mountain, lunch date with a friend, Downtown Disney
What Actually Happened:
We left for the parks at 7:50 and by 8:05 we were signed up for the Lilly Belle at 10am. By 8:15 we were on our way to Space Mountain. SM had a posted wait time of 10 minutes, but we only waited about 5.. At 8:30 we walked by Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters which had a 5 minute posted wait time, which we walked on to. My score: 7,600 (shameful I know). Ferron’s score: 116,700. We walked past Pixie Hollow and there was only about 3 families in line so I gave Ferron the “eyes” and said please, and we got in line. We were able to meet Fawn and Tink herself! 8:55 rolls around and we walk onto Storybook land. We stopped to take PhotoPass pictures by the sword and then hopped onto Pinocchio’s Daring Journey. At 9:10 we walked onto Snow White and then stopped to look at pin trader books. By 9:30 we got FPs for Indy and headed up towards main St. Towards the train station. At 10am we departed on the Lilly Belle. We didn’t sit near the front so it was hard to hear, but it was really neat to see something personal from Walt to his wife! The whole ride took about a half hour. We needed to be in New Orleans Square so we got on the regular train and stayed on until we reached it.
At 10:43, we got to Indy with a 12 minute wait. Afterwards we headed back to New Orleans Square to hop a ride to Tomorrowland. When we got off, I ran to get FPs for Space while Ferron hopped in line for the Monorail to Downtown Disney. We were a little early for our lunch date with a friend so we walked around DTD for a half hour. We ended up at Napolini for lunch... but our friend had really bad allergies and couldn’t make it. We went ahead and ordered lunch. If I remember correctly I ordered a pizza as did Ferron plus a salad. It was alright, but I’ve had better. The total came to $18.80. We decided we needed a sweet snack so we walked to Marceline’s Confectionary. I ordered a triple chocolate brownie (something I recommend to anyone!!) and Ferron ordered a peanut caramel apple. That total came to $7.55 with our AP discount. It was so hard not to eat our treats right away, but we headed back to DL via monorail and indulged ourselves in Tomorrowland.
At 2:15 we got in line for Big Thunder with a 30 minute posted wait time. Around 2:30 we were in the front of the line. At 2:40 we headed to Space for our FPs and had a 5-10 minute wait. At this point Ferron had a nasty blister so we walked to the Main St. First-Aid station (10) for a band-aid. I had brought some on our trip, but failed to put them in my bag that morning. After our first-aid adventure, we decided to head to frontier land to get FPs for Big Thunder, but it was broken down for the second time that day. All of a sudden I realize I had lost my phone... we tried calling it, but no one would pick up. So, I looked at my trip notes and headed back to the first-aid station where I thought I had left it. Low and behold it was there... crisis averted. By now it was around 4 and the park was SUPER busy so we kind of walked and just sat down... settling at the Golden Horseshoe for a root beer float ($4.20 w/AP discount). After our float, we headed to the hotel for some R&R. At 8:15 we went to the park for dinner (yay for 3 hour naps).
We got FPs for Indy and tried to make it to the first showing of Fantasmic! But, there were no tables so instead we searched for food. Ferron wanted a turkey leg and corn, but wasn’t impressed and couldn’t finish it because it was so greasy. Since he was still hungry he headed to Bengal BBQ and ordered bacon wrapped asparagus and a chicken skewer ($7.12). It was really cold at this point so I just wanted to sit down... but I needed to eat. So, I searched everywhere for a chili bread bowl, but the Golden Horseshoe was closed already. I finally walked all the way to Coke Corner for my chili bowl plus a large sprite. It was $11 with our AP discount. It was kind of funny hunting spots for the second showing of Fantasmic! Because you’re not allowed to stand and wait for a table, I was asked to go inside the restaurant and so I did... and I waited... and waited. Finally I saw a table open up and made a beeline for it (11). What’s funny is that it was the exact same table we were at last year.
Fantasmic started at 10:15 and by 10:30 we got FPs for Big Thunder and walked through the shops to stay warm (did I mention it was freezing?!). At 11:15 we got in line for Indy and had about a 15 minute wait. At this point in our trip we felt it was time to start looking for Hidden Mickey’s. I had grabbed my Hidden Mickey book when we made it back to the hotel earlier. After Indy, we headed straight toward BTMRR . The FP line was longer than expected, but it was the last ride of the night. We still made it through in about 15 minutes. At 12:05am we headed back to our hotel.
Best part of the day: Lilly Belle, meeting Tink
Worst part of the day: first-aid for Ferron, walking all over for food
Day 4: Saturday, March 24, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am,
Plan: DCA, Soarin’, World of Color, Toy Story mania, lunch at Big Thunder Mountain BBQ
What Actually Happened:
Today was our day to sleep in. At 9:30 we left the hotel and headed to DCA. We grabbed Soarin’ FPs. Then, Ferron grabbed WOC FPs while I looked around in the gift shop. At 10am we walked to Goofy’s Sky School. Last year it wasn’t open while we were there so this was our first peak at the attraction. It was fun, but I was definitely not a fan of the edge! After GSS, Ferron rode single-rider for Screamin’ while I waited. By that day, Ferron had been bugging me line no ones business to ride Screamin’ or Tower of Terror... I told him there was no way in Disney heaven that that was going to happen! Around 10:30, we were in line for Toy Story Mania. For some reason it was closed when we walked by earlier. There was about a 15-20 minute wait. Can someone PLEASE tell me why there are NO FPs for this ride?!?! Ferron’s Score: 180,100. My score: 111,800.
Around 10:50 we walked back to Condor Flats to use our Soarin’ FPs. After we “landed” we took a picture with Lightning McQueen and Mayter. At 11:15 we walked over to ToT, but the return time for FPs was for when we’d be at lunch, so we walked along the Hollywood backlot instead. Our feet were kind of hurting so we stopped by the stage to watch Disney performing Arts—a band playing classical Disney music. Fifteen minutes later we walked onto Mike & Sully and then looked around the shops for a bit. At 11:45 we walked to DL and got FPs for BTMRR. By 12:30 we were starving and decided to go to lunch a little early. Our total was $45.76 with our AP discount. After lunch we went to pet the donkeys/goats next to the restaurant (12). I had no idea this was even in the park!! We then headed to BTMRR to use our FPs and only waited about 10 minutes. At 2pm the crowds were getting kind of heavy (13) so we headed back to our hotel for naps and laundry. At 5:30 it was time to head back to DCA. We walked over to ToT and there were NO FPs available AND there was an 80 minute wait.
I can’t remember what happened over the next hour, but at 6:30 I walked over to Goofy’s Sky school to get FPs and by then it was time to get in line for WoC. I was craving a churro so I walked over to the pier to get one (I forget the price). When WoC was over it was 8:30 and we decided to skip GSS FPs and headed to DL instead. We hopped on the train at Main St. and waited about 10 minutes because the train in front of us had broken down. We ended up making our way to Western Pin Traders in Frontierland for Ferron to get a pin pack to trade with. Around 9:30 we made our way to Tomorrowland Terrace to split a burger ($8.23 with AP discount). We were able to catch a Tribute to the King of Rock and Roll with Scott Bruce which was fun. At 10:10 we walked towards Main St., stopping by the castle PhotoPass. After that we continued down Main St. to look at pins and trade with cast members. We stopped at Market House for a white hot chocolate (14) which was super yummy and only $2.40 with our AP discount. At 10:30 we walked up the other side of Main St. At that point I still had no idea what “goodies” I wanted to take home. By then it was 11 and we were going to wait in line for Goofy, but decided we’d rather do it in the day time. Instead we sat and watched him interact with the kids. At 11:30 we headed back to the hotel.
Best part of the day: Toy Story Mania, Big Thunder Ranch BBQ
Worst Part of the day: Ferron never made it to Tower of Terror
Day 5: Sunday, March 25, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am,
Plan: Toontown, characters, PhotoPass pictures
What Actually Happened:
At 7:15 we had breakfast at the hotel and then headed towards DL. By day 5 we were tired of toaster waffles and cheap danishes. When the gates opened at 8 we headed towards Toontown. We hadn’t spent much time in Fantasyland so we hopped in line for Peter Pans flight which had a 5 minute wait time. At 8:30 we walked to Big Thunder, got FPs, and then rode it. By the time we got off, it was almost time for Toontown to open. At 9am we headed straight to Minnie’s house (15). This was really cool as I had never been to any of the houses in Toontown. I loved how everything was pink! Mickey’s house was next on the list. It was fun searching for “hidden” Mickey’s everywhere. One of the rides I remembered from when I was little was the Gadgets Go-Coaster and since it was right there, we hopped in line. I wanted to take advantage of the photo ops in Toontown, plus look for hidden Mickey’s so we walked around for a bit and what so you know... out strolls Goofy. We were the first in line so we were able to take a few fun poses with him. Around 9:40 we used our FPs for BTMRR which was a walk-on. We checked to see if the Colombia was running and the guy said to come back in an hour so we headed to Tomorrowland to get FPs for Star Tours. By 10:10 we were getting hungry and walked to the Jolly holiday Bakery for a croissant and a ham and cheese quiche ($9.14 with AP discount). We also snacked on grapes we brought from our hotel.
After our mid-morning snack, we stopped by the Partner’s statue for more photo pass pictures. Ferron had been craving a Dole Whip Float (16) so I hopped in line. There was a performance of the Enchanted Tiki Room at 10:45, so we walked in and took our seats. To this day I still don’t understand the point, but Ferron loves it so I go anyway. At 11, we rode the mark Twain River Boat. It was fun to see the park from a different view. After the Mark Twain, it was time for at Star Tours FPs and we only had about a 10 minute wait. At 11:45 we got FPs for Space Mountain and then started walking towards Main St. around noon. As we were walking we saw Daisy (17) coming out so I gave Ferron the “eyes” again and said please, so we got in line and took a picture. Chip and Dale also appeared so we took a picture with Dale. At 12:15 we walked back to our hotel for some lunch. It started sprinkling about then so we were glad to rest our feet for a bit. Our entire trip had been mostly overcast, but not super cold (unless it was nighttime).
At 3:20 we left for the parks and right as we got to the crosswalk it started pouring and we were soaked within seconds! My shoes were soaked through and my jeans were drenched. So we headed back to the hotel... again. By 6:15 is had stopped raining so we headed back to DL. At 6:30 we walked around the Emporium to look for Ferron a sweater because his had gotten soaked earlier from the rain. We continued onto Space to use our FPs from earlier. At that point, DL hadn’t started enforcing the FP return times. There was only about a 5-10 minute wait for Space. Fifteen minutes later we were still looking for Ferron a sweater. At 7, we walked-on to Buzz which had a 5 minute posted wait time. My aim was improving! My score: 25,600. Ferron’s Score: 237,300. At 7:25 we walked through Pin Traders in Frontierland and ended up at Rancho del Zocalo right before they closed and hour and a half early due to weather. We decided to split a meal (18)- grilled chicken plus tortilla soup ($17.38 with AP discount). The restaurant was dead aside from a few families who were finishing their meals. After dinner we bought Ferron a sweatshirt and I put leggings on under my jeans because it was freezing!!! That just happened to be a brilliant idea! When we bought Ferron’s sweatshirt we also bought the Disneyland throw which was $18 with any $30 purchase. At 8:15 there was a 10 minute posted wait time for Star Tours. We ended up only waiting for 3-5 minutes. After Star Tours we checked and confirmed that the fireworks had been cancelled that night. By 8:40 it had stopped raining. The park was dead so we decided to get in line for Autopia- about an accurate 20 minute wait. Personally, I was not so impressed with the ride, although Ferron had fun “driving”.
At 9pm is started raining again, but we wanted to try and wait it out. So, we made our way down Main St., stopping by market House for a White Hot Cocoa (those things are fantastic!) which was $2.40 with our AP discount. Unfortunately at 9:45, right as we made it to the end of Main St. it started pouring (with some thunder) so we decided to book it back to our hotel.
Best part of the day: meeting Daisy Duck and eating a Dole Whip Float
Worst Part of the Day: RAIN and getting soaked!!!
Day 6: Monday, March 26, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am,
Plan: Ride all of our favorite rides one last time
What Actually Happened:
At 7:30 we left for the parks. When the park opened at 8, we got FPs for Space and then hopped in line. We had about a 5 minute wait. At 8:30 it was a walk-on to Buzz. My score: 51,500. Ferron’s score: 145,700. Ten minutes late we stopped by the Castle for another PhotoPass opportunity. At 8:45 we were hungry and headed to the Jolly Holiday Bakery for a cinnamon roll and a cappuccino muffin ($7.12 with AP discount). After breakfast it was time for a ride on the jungle cruise with Skipper Jacob. We had about a 5 minute wait. Afterwards, we walked on to the Haunted Mansion. Today was the day I was looking for any hidden Mickey’s I could find. At 9:35 we hopped on the train from Frontierland to Main St. it was time to head to DCA!
At park opening we headed straight to ToT so Ferron could get FPs... finally! Then, we walked towards Goofy’s Sky School. It was closed, but Goofy was there so we took a picture with him. It was really funny because by the end of the trip, Ferron had a good handful of pins on his lanyard. So, Goofy looked for one of him, didn’t see one, and pushed Ferron our of the picture. It was great! We headed towards Screamin’ and Ferron rode single rider while I got FPs for later. At 11:10 we took PhotoPass pictures with Mickey and a few minutes later it was time for Ferron to use his ToT FPs from earlier. I took a picture with Pluto while Ferron rode ToT. At 11:45 we were hungry for lunch so we walked to Condor Flats and ate at Taste Pilots. Ferron ordered a chili burger and I ordered a cheeseburger with a regular sprite (about $20 with AP discount). I was about half way through my burger when I looked down and saw a... hair. Talk about nasty! I showed Ferron and he told me to take it back. I felt bad because half of the burger was already gone. Nonetheless, I took it back inside and found a woman who looked like a manager. I explained the situation and she immediately apologized and took my burger and my receipt. In the end I got a new burger and she refunded the money from my burger on my card. IT was very quick and I felt like she handled the situation very well.
At 12:30 we walked to Paradise Pier, stopping by the Grizzly River Run for a PhotoPass picture. As we neared the pier, I was still contemplating Screamin’. Even writing this my stomach is in knots. At 12:45 the Fun Wheel like was too long, so Ferron traded pins. By 1pm it was time to use our Screamin’ FPs, so we got in line. My hands started sweating, my hear started beating faster and faster... even sitting down I didn’t know if I could actually do it. However, I was locked in and had no choice once the coaster counted down!! I seriously thought I was going to die... or throw up. Luckily, neither happened. I hated the two major drops (which also confirmed that I would never ride ToT), but going upside down didn’t faze me at all! Although I’ll admit that my eyes were closed for 95% of the ride. Ferron held my hand the entire time and nudged me when the photo op was coming up. I gave a thumbs up and thanked God it was over. I had officially ridden my first “big” roller coaster!
At 1:20 I decided I needed to ride a tamer ride at the park so we hopped on the Little Mermaid with a 5 minute wait. At 2:30 we found ourselves on Hollywood Blvd. at Schmoozies. We ordered a Dynamic Duo ($5.38) which was fantastic. At 2:45 Ferron used the second ToT FP while I took a picture with Mr. Incredible. After that we decided to head out to DL. Before we left, we asked about the AP Preview which was supposed to open the next day. On went our trek to Disneyland. We used our FPs for Space from earlier and had about a 10-15 minute wait. Once that was done, we looked at pins.
At 4:40 we were a smidge hungry and we hadn’t yet had mozzarella sticks so we headed to the Golden Horseshoe and ordered them as well as a root beer float ($10.52 with AP discount). After we were done enjoying our snack, we got FPs for BTMRR. At 5pm we sat down for the parade (19)... which we thought was at 6pm (instead of 6:30...ooops). At 6:30 we watched the parade. When the parade was over, we checked out our PhotoPass pictures. At 7pm we used our BTMRR FPs and had less that a 5 minutes. At 7:20 we got Indy FPs and 10 minutes after that we sat down for fireworks right in front of the castle... SUCH good/cool seats. Around 7:50 I was super hungry so I went to the Jolly Holiday Bakery for what I had been strangely craving all week... a grilled cheese sandwich. AND... it came with tomato basil soup. I also ordered water. The total was around $11 with our AP discounts. I have to say that I was more than excited to find out they made it... and even more excited to know it same with tomato basil soup! It was so yummy and definitely hit the spot on a cold Disney night.
After the fireworks Ferron was hungry so he headed to Bengal BBQ ($7.12 with AP discount). At 9:15 we walked onto the Jungle Cruise with Skipper Christina. And, at 9:30 we window shopped... again! We decided to get another set of BTMRR FPs so we headed over there. I hadn’t really bought any souvenirs yet so we headed to the Emporium/Main St. around 10pm to check a few things out. At 10:30 we hit up Coke Corner for hot cocoa which was $2.55 with AP discount. Five minutes later we used our BTMRR FPs and then walked to Pieces of Eight to purchase some goodies. We found a cool penny press (20) so we did that as well. Ever since our honeymoon we have been collecting pressed pennies to show where we have been. At 11:30 we used our Indy FPs. Since it was our last night at DL I asked the cast member at the end of the movie room about the Eeyore sign in the rafters.. it was definitely WAY back there! There was one hidden Mickey (21) I really wanted to see... but it was on the ride so I wasn’t sure if I would be able to see it. However, as we rounded the corner to the Skelton room... I saw it and immediately started squealing like a giddy child. After Indy, we walked down Main St and stopped to take our last nighttime photo pass picture. As we were leaving we saw Goofy’s son Max, which I thought was kind of cool. After out photo op, we purchased our souvenirs from the Emporium and headed back to the hotel.
Best part of the day: riding my first roller coaster, grilled cheese & tomato basil soup, finding the hidden Mickey on Indy, and Mozarella sticks
Worst part of the day: riding my first roller coaster, realizing it was our last full night at Disney.
Day 7: Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Park Hours: DL 8-12am,
Plan: DL for park opening, DCA AP Preview, Home
What Actually Happened:
At 7:35 we checked out of our hotel and were at DL for park opening. We grabbed FP for Star Tours and then headed straight for Space Mountain. Because it was Magic Morning, the line for Space was already 30 minutes. Since it was our last day we decided to get in like anyway. It was fun because we got behind a family of grandparents and their grandkids and chatted with them to pass the time. We only ended up waiting 20-25 minutes. At 8:40 we got in line for Star Tours and only waited for about 5 minutes. At 9am it was time for breakfast so we went to the Jolly Holiday Bakery... a place we had grown to love over the past week. Ferron ordered a carrot raisin muffin and I ordered a chocolate cappuccino muffin while we split a ham and cheese quiche ($11.69 with AP discount). After breakfast we walked to DCA (around 9:30) and the park and rides were already opened. At 9:50 we got in line for Midway mania which had a 15 minute posted wait time. We only waited about 10 minutes. Ferron’s score: 169, 400. My score: 123, 200.
At 10:15 we got in line for the Fun Wheel and had about a 5 minute wait for a non-swinging gondola. A few years ago Ferron and I went down to the Santa Cruise Boardwalk and rode the Ferris Wheel in which he proceeded to rock our cart back and forth leaving me scared for live... never wanting to ride a Ferris Wheel again. However, I decided to try to conquer my fear and I really wanted to ride the fun wheel. So, we got in line. It was really cool to see both parks from the highest point in DLR. However, it was also the scariest thing ever and neither of us wanted to ride it again! Around 10:30 we grabbed FPs for Goofy’s Sky School and met up with Chip & Dale shortly after. At 11am it was time to head to Studio 17 for the AP Carsland Merchandise Preview. We tried both the Green Apple and Cotton Candy frozen beverage (I would recommend the green apple to anyone!). After a half hour of looking around, we decided to purchase a sugar jar (I always seem to run out of baking cocoa and thought it would be perfect).
At 11:45 we walked over to GSS just to fin d out it was closed (sad day), so we headed to the Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta. I ordered the chicken tomato pesto pasta and Ferron ordered the spaghetti and meatballs. Our total came to $17.38 with our AP discount. We definitely could have split a plate here. After lunch (around 12:30) GSS was open again so we hopped in the FP line and only waited 5 minutes. Then we walked to Condor Flats to see Minnie, but the line was too long so we said good-bye to DCA and headed back to Disneyland. At 1pm when we arrived at the park, there were characters everywhere! We stopped by the floral Mickey out front for a photo pass op. Then took a picture with Pinocchio (man, he was short)! After that we took our picture with Geppetto with a PhotoPass photographer. AT 1:15 we hopped on the Main St. train to New Orleans Square and got in line for Pirates. There was a 20 minutes posted wait time (which I didn’t’ believe because the line was out the entrance), but it was accurate. After Pirates we rested by Aladdin’s oasis and walked ot pin traders in Frontierland. Since Ferron loves Stitch, we talked to the ‘Stitch” collector for quite a while. Aladdin was supposed to be at the Oasis, but never showed. I wanted to see Tangled so we started heading that direction. We saw a PhotoPass guy and stopped. As it turns out, Snow White was supposed to be there soon so we waited... and waited. She didn’t show either so we walked towards Tomorrowland for Ferron to trade pins and guess who we run into? None other than Snow White and the Evil Queen. We stalked them for a while and then stood in line for a picture. It was really cute because when we were following them, they both had a hold of a little princess who could not have been more than 4 years old. It was probably one of the cutest things I had seen all week.
At 3pm we finally headed through Tomorrowland and decided to walk through Fantasyland. It was a crazy madhouse so we stopped in Toontown to wait for the train. It was one of the longest lines I had ever seen there. At 3:30 we saw Cruella de Vil interacting with Snow White and the Evil Queen. It is always fun to see different characters interacting with one another. We quickly booked it to the PhotoPass store to purchase our cd. We had a total of 104 photos which was twice as many as last year! It was taking a while to upload out photos so we walked to Market House for our last Disneyland treat (22): a triple chocolate brownie and a while chocolate chip cookie ($6 with AP discount). At 4 we walked back to photo pass to purchase our cd. At 4:10 we booked it back to the Del Sol to wait for our taxi. At 4:25 (5 minutes early) our taxi picked us up. We paid $45 from the Del Sol to SNA. It was then that we began our journey home. We arrived at SNA at 4:50. We were both fairly hungry so I purchased a sandwich from Subway and Ferron ordered Carl’s Jr. Our flight boarded/took off on time and we landed at SMF at 8:28pm.
It took forever for us to get our bags (or so it seemed) and once we did we hopped on the shuttle to economy parking... it was pouring and really cold! I had been battling what turned out to be a sinus infection (ick) so Ferron wanted me to stay as dry as possible. By the time he got to our car he was soaked, but he made it and I helped him with our bags into the car. Around 10pm we stopped for “energy” which consisted of Mountain Dew and Dr. Pepper. We finally made it home around midnight. Once our heads hit our pillows it was off to Neverland.
Best part of the day: meeting Snow White and the Evil Queen
Worst part of the day: leaving the happiest place on earth!
Lessons Learned/What we already knew:
1. Pack the car the night before
2. If you have a problem, call guest services!!
3. Get Fast Passes for every ride you can and if you are visiting for more than a day don’t wait more than 20 minutes in line for a ride... it’s not worth your time.
4. When in doubt, just do it!
5. The Jolly Holiday Bakery is the perfect place for an inexpensive mid-morning breakfast/snack
6. Ride the Lilly Belle! Such a cool experience... and make sure to sign up for your ride as soon as you enter the park to insure your spot.
7. When you see a PhotoPass photographer with hardly anyone in line... hop in it as you can get some more creative pictures!
8. Ordering from Vons was one of the best ideas given to us. It can save you a bunch of money... especially if you are traveling with a group. Also, register before your trip and get free shipping on your first order!
9. When you’re at DCA and are tired of walking around, stop by to see Turtle Talk with Crush. It is different every time and often more entertaining for the adults than the children.
10. It’s always a good idea to bring Band-Aids with you, but if you forget to take them to the park, don’t’ forget about the first-aid stations!
11. It’s nice to sit at a table instead of standing through Fantasmic! You are elevated enough to see over the crowds.
12. If you have younger children, or just like animals, visiting the “ranch” next to BTR BBQ is a fun, low-key thing to do.
13. If you are staying more than one day... go back to your hotel during the busier times (2-4ish). Take a nap, eat some lunch, and rest up for the rest of the night.
14. If you are a tad chilly, grab a hot chocolate at Market House. Not only does it smell amazing in there, but the hot cocoa will warm you from the outside in.
15. If you want to visit Minnie and Mickey at home, but don’t want to wait in line... head to Toontown as soon as it opens. You won’t have to wait in line and can take your time walking through their houses.
16. Anyone who likes pineapple even a little bit MUST have a Dole Whip Float. So yummy and a nice snack to share... or not. Also good to snack on while in the Enchanted Tiki Room
17. Take advantage of the characters you don’t see as often at Disneyland such as Daisy Duck, Max, etc.
18. One of the best ways to save money in the parks is to share meals. I can hardly ever finish a full plate at a restaurant so this is a great option for those who are the same way.
19. In order to get good viewing spots for parades and fireworks, arrive to your desired spot about 45 minutes to an hour before the event starts. This will give you some rest time and allow your group to use the restroom/get some snacks as well.
20. Using a Penny Press for something special to take home is a great idea! It’s cheap and something that can stand the test of time.
21. It is totally worth it to purchase the Hidden Mickey book. It’s fun to search for them throughout both parks and it’s a nice activity if you have been to Disneyland before.
22. Right before you leave Disneyland, purchase some DL treats to eat on your trip home. It may just make the magic last a little bit longer.