Monday, October 9, 2017

Disney 2016 Planning Part 9

September 20, 2016
W Minus 44
Magic Kingdom closing moved an hour later our first night. Now we can see the fireworks! Or more likely ignore them to get on short lines since they’re an hour before park closing.  Animal Kingdom also listed closing at 7pm now. Really glad I didn’t book an off park dinner after they supposedly closed at 5PM per the first time I looked.


September 24, 2016
W-Minus 40
Our old desktop’s internal battery died a while ago, so the clock has to be reset whenever it’s turned on. It seems to be excited too. Though the year is off, the month and day are when we leave for Disney, meaning as it gets closer, I can sense it by having to change the numbers less and less.


September 25, 2016
W-Minus 39
Finally made the Mickey macaroni we bought on the last trip.  Probably should have done this sooner…since it expired a year ago.  Easy recipe though: 
Boil it up-strain it through-chuck it out!


September 28, 2016
W minus 36
Main Street Bakery under refurbishment.  NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!  

Oh…it’s only partially closed and access to giant Mickey cookies is still available.  Maybe I’m wound a little too tight about this trip.


September 29, 2016
W-Minus 35
Budget cuts drop a couple of classic original characters from Magic Kingdom (Snoops and the Banjo Brothers) and Rafiki is no longer in Adventure Land.  He wasn’t there on our last trip and I never saw him on the character guide on the app, so no biggie on that one.  The biggie is no more Woody and Jessie by Splash Mountain.  That kills any chance of skipping the Woody and Buzz line in MGM, and also kills any chance of meeting Jessie.  I guess I’ll never get to meet Stinky Pete, Con sarn it!


October 1, 2016
W Minus 33
The Magic Kingdom is Forty-Five today!  It’s a good thing this happened, otherwise how would they think of new merchandise ideas?


October 2, 2016
W minus 32
The Muppets view on history show opens in Liberty Square.  Yes, the latest TV show was a disaster, but given the theme parks' past Muppet successes, I’m hopeful about this one.


October 3, 2016
W minus 31
Kim checks into video church clearance.  Looks like final day Castle Breakfast works after all!

I’m sending out “next month at this time” e-mails to the whole group. Not because I’m insane…
(OK…not only because I’m insane.)

But because the time shift helps me not be terrified by the mountain of work within that month.  Grandma sends enthusiastic replies, and Anabelle dances around cheering when she reads them. I guess I’m not the only one that method works for. They are reproduced for  the next set of days.

This Time Next Month: we'll be feverishly sticking last minute stuff in suitcases.  And I'll be feverishly talking myself out of sneaking out to see a midnight premier of Doctor Strange.

Grandma:
I’d be tempted by Dr. Strange too. Guess we have to wait until we come home. Don’t want to start out at Disney exhausted.


October 4, 2016
W minus 30
ONE MONTH TO GO!   Magic Express Luggage Tags Arrive!  YAY!
Work Continues to Batter Me in an Attempt to Bury my Enthusiasm…bleah.

Also, just about everyone involved in this adventure is being treated for sinus/ear infections.  Usually that happens the week before the trip. We must be getting more efficient.

This Time Next Month: We will be getting ready to eat in the Plaza while the end of the Parade passes outside the windows facing Main Street USA...

And I will be praying fiercely that it actually is happening and I am not due to wake up screaming in a meeting somewhere.

Grandma:  I love ANTICIPATION.  Thinking about the PLAZA makes my tired body get new energy.  Sometimes, I think like you have written and have to calm myself down and say NO IT IS REAL!!!!

Me Again:  I'm glad it worked out on that day. 

While not the most exciting part of the park, there's something about having that meal make the "Aaaaaah" when you first get on Main Street extended that will be very therapeutic.


October 5, 2016
W minus 29
This Time Next Month: We'll be within the Fast Pass Plus window for the Big Ball after battling our way back to Future World from Norway through the drunken mob.

Grandma: Another big hit for you to make for me. I love the Ball.  For me, Epcot wouldn’t be Epcot without a ride on it. Again, ANTICIPATION, my head literally sings the word every time one of your email arrives.

By the way, it’ll only be the second day. We’ll have the energy to battle those drunks and with only a little carriage we should be able to move around them more easily.


October 6, 2016
W minus 28
This Time Next Month: We'll be in our Fast Pass seats awaiting the start of the Festival of the Lion King on Rosa's birthday. Considering we weren't supposed to be in Animal Kingdom at all that day until meal availability and crowd predictions shifted the plan, the Disney Destiny force is pretty strong in this family.

Grandma: Our family's Disney Destiny Force - I LIKE IT. That is  a powerful  power to have. LUCKY US!


October 7, 2016
W minus 27
Grandma has joined in the “next month at” game by sending weather reports!  Looks like we won’t be freezing again.  The arrival thunderstorm may be cancelled this time around, but the going home soaking is on schedule.   Oddly the meteorologists missed the "100% of a freak downpour" statement the days we’re in EPCOT.

Magic Bands shipped!  Since I already have a blue one that says “Jeff” on the inside, this one will say WWWGNG!

This Time Next Month: We will be somewhere in MGM after finishing a Brown Derby Lunch.  As much as the Sci –Fi ‘s fine movies are part of my life, I'm very much looking forward to sharing a place Dad really liked with the kids that they haven't been to yet.

Grandma: That is such a wonderful thing to look forward to and a great thought to add to it. Actually, Dad and I did get to go there one more time in 2006 when we were there for Maddalena & Jerry's 40th Anniversary.  It was about 4 PM and we skipped lunch. We were walking around and just passed it. Dad said "Let's eat there". I said, "We don't have a reservation. How can we just go in?  They won't be able to seat us." Dad said, "Let's try. Maybe we'll be lucky."

You know the end of this Dad story, he was right again. I went into the bathroom and when I got out he was at the table, with his I told you smile. Disney memories, even small ones, are always great. Thanks for bringing this one back to me.


October 8, 2016
W minus 26
Hurricane Michael shut down Disney parks yesterday.  Even in the wake of a mass of destructive nature, the Cast Members were back that afternoon to make sure all the parks opened today at 8am. Disney rocks!

This Time Next Month: We should be at one of the Harry Potter areas after running with everyone else going to Universal and ignoring the rest of their parks till later.  Most of the other guests will ignore them all day.

Grandma:  I keep thinking I've never left Disney World, no matter how long my stay was except to go to Church.  Now, thanks to Kim's extraordinary thought process and Father Rich, we're going to Mass twice in our rooms but leaving to go to Universal. It is a little sad but exciting and I would only do this for Harry Potter. It's tough to teach an OLD dog new tricks but sometimes it is worth it, even for a Dinosaur like me.  And since we are going, I'm glad Morgan can see the Minions.


October 9, 2016
W Minus 25
After Anabelle’s birthday barbecue last night, she toured the kids through the Grid. She even highlighted types of event (meal, FastPass, transport) to “enhance it beautifulness.

That’s my girl.

They all sat around a table going over the days and thinking about shirts and costumes.  My sister joined in having a similar shirt situation as Anabelle. Except for her, instead of which Ariel shirt to pick on which day, it’s which Maleficent shirt.

This Time Next Month: Thanx to the scheduled closing moving later after everything was booked: We'll be balancing the worth of extra exhausted children versus the advantages of night extra Magic Hours minimized lines in the Magic Kingdom.  Or, more likely since it's us, trying to figure out how to get extra mileage out of exhausted children.

Grandma: I think they will collapse on the way back to the hotel but be energized going on the rides. It is like Kim and Me now. When you sit still you go unconscious.  The other problem might be getting them up in the morning. For that matter that includes getting us up in the morning. The first few days will good well but the efforts will be bigger as the days go on.  

Dad and I went once for 11 days.  We actually did a little touring of some different places like the Boardwalk because we had the time and went to Disneyquest. But then we realized we'd just rather be in the parks over and over again. I would hope all of us adults will still feel that way. I would think the children would definitely like over and over again.

It will be interesting watching who falls asleep where and when, as the days go on.  I sometimes still can't believe we are going to do this and for so many days. It still excites me.

Me Again: There will be an insane amount of sleeping on buses, I’d imagine. A quick reenergize for a pool trip at night since it should be warmer and back out.

I'm sure we’ll all conk out here and there in the Parks by the end, but that's part of the charm.

Rosa and I did a little Boardwalk and stuff the first time we went alone, but except for the occasional Downtown visit, the Parks are the best place to be.

Thank you again so much for this, I really need it this year. And promise to keep myself over fed to remove "crazy hungry land" possibilities.

Grandma: One other thing, I’m like a camel with water but even I need drink and food even if it is junk food during the long days. We’ll all have to pay attention. 

Hindsight:  “Oops.”


October 10, 2016
W minus 24
This Time Next Month: We'll be dragging ourselves towards the rotating Garden Grill after an extended EPCOT Death March, where we will take advantage of another  "all you care to enjoy " to refuel for the days ahead.

Grandma: That is Thursday the day that is supposed to have the most rain.  No matter what day you picked those percentages would be up.  Eating at the Garden Grill will make it all worthwhile for me.    I think the kids will catch the excitement of the place rotating but even more over who they see. Chip and Dale are always funny. Minnie is always cute.  Who else is there? My brain seems to be tired.


October 11, 2016
W minus 23
This Time Next Month: We'll be figuring out which Magic Kingdom things to squeeze in before hustling (boating?) over to the Floridian for dinner with Cinderella and her family.

Grandma:  I've been thinking about the Time Line. Parade at 3 and dinner at almost 7. The parade will be about a half hour or a little more. Then we'll need a potty break. That will get us to a little after 4.  We'll need to get to the Grand Floridian a good half hour before dinner time if the girls are going to PRIMP.   Plus we need time to get there.  I don't care how we get there but between this dinner and the breakfast, I would like to ride the Monorail at least once, just for old time sake. 

I think that means we will have about an hour in the Park. We'll have to do something not too far from the entrance and not overly crowded. I don’t' know what that could be. I'm just giving you my take on the Time Line. Perhaps one more ride on the Small World. I really don't know.

Me Again:  Thanx for being someone else thinking about the timeline.  I'm planning out a couple Monorail possibilities and would like a boat trip as well. If that day is rainy, Monorail may be our only option.

We also may have seen the parade Wednesday and use that time for short lines.  Since the crowd thins out as the 7pm closing for the Christmas party gets closer, I was hoping to move dinner back a little to let us stay at the Kingdom longer, but nothing opened up.


October 12, 2016
W minus 22
Magic bands arrive!!! Woo Hoo!
In related news, HOLY CRAP THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING!!!!

This Time Next Month: We'll be done with our Great Movie Ride Fast Pass...unless there was no line and we switched it for a return to Uncle Jesse's ride.  We could also be going for the Visa Star Wars picture, if we didn't to that already Monday.

Honestly, the latter parts of the vacation get a lot more flexible than the beginning.  Someone just remind me to eat around this time please, as crazy hungry also is more prevalent in the latter parts.

Grandma: I actually checked your itinerary for this answer and was quite excited to see that the Tower of Terror was on the list for only 2 hours later. So, no matter what we are doing, I’ll be thrilled with the upcoming ride. The Great Movie Ride and the Tower makes a great day for me.  It isn’t the ride itself. It’s the lead up to it.  I may not like roller coasters so much but I can handle the up and down for one time just to see all the Twilight Zone connections.

Eating after the Movie Ride will be a priority, for keeping us all sane. You can’t go all the way from breakfast to 4:20 at Hollywood and Vine.  Breakfast with so many choices for me will be a lot of carbs like Pancakes, or Waffles and fruits like canned peaches won’t be substantial enough to hold for the whole day, even though I love that stuff and will be indulging.  There will have to be something to eat  to keep up our strength and sanity.  Then on to the TOWER.


October 13, 2016
W minus 21
EPCOT added a Magic PhotoPass picture where you get to hold Remy…a rat.
Sometimes I get the feeling there is a giant hidden rodent PR agenda behind the scenes at the Disney Empire.

This Time Next Month: We'll be arriving for breakfast in Cinderella's castle, yay!  I refuse to think about "next time this month" after today, but luckily will be distracted by ONLY THREE WEEKS TO GO (or less, I won't be emailing every day, to keep you all from killing me before we even leave.)

Grandma: Good Move. My email compilation is very long.  Another Good Move – not reminding how sad everyone is going to be at that breakfast. But at least we won’t be distracted and tired because our early morning cab ride to the Church. (Thanks to Kim and Father Rich again.)

Me Again: No, we will not be sad at breakfast. We will be in Cinderella's Castle. If we focus on the now and the good stuff, we will be happy. If we focus on the fact that the vacation has to end, we can make ourselves miserable the whole time. (Sorry, been trying to teach Anabelle this idea for a while.)


October 14, 2016
W minus 20
Princess Aurora to be fired from Fairy Tale Princess Hall and replaced with Princess Elena of Avalor.  Fortunately this is after we’ve left as (A) All of Kim’s kids’ names are somehow inspired by Sleeping Beauty.  (B) ALL four of the kids hate Elena’s show.


October 15, 2016
W minus 19
I got a “Your FastPass is changed” e-mail.  The last day’s placeholder end of day 6:30-7PM one in MGM is now 6:30-7:30. Since the park closes at 7PM, I am confused.  
*checking*
Park now closes at 8pm.  Magic Kingdom on Wednesday extended again. Now it’s open to 11pm, and has extra hours from 11-1am, where we probably can’t use them. So much for planning.  Shirts are in piles with the suitcase, so at least something good planning related happened today.


October 17, 2016
W minus 18
There’s a new Christmas light show coming to MGM, Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM…
After we leave.  Looks like the next countdown may start a little early.


October 19, 2016
W minus 16
Compiled step by step lists for people covering while I’m off work.  The level of stuff I have to do makes any vacation look like Zeno’s Paradox to get to it.

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