May 2014 Walt Disney World Trip Report – Day 1

Welcome to our May trip report! Otherwise known as the last trip as a family of 3….how exciting and scary at the same time!

So, just like most of our Disney trip reports, it appears that it took us about 3 months to start sharing the trip report after returning from the trip. I guess that means we’re right on time then, right?

Leave it to us to never have any set ritual as far as when we leave, which park we visit first, etc. It’s always random and always changed at the last minute, but it’s always fun for sure.

As I said in our pre-trip report, there were a few reasons for this trip:

Rock Your Disney Side 24 hour event at Magic Kingdom. Brett had the ambitious goal of staying in MK the entire 24 hours. Me, I planned to be lazy and show up a bit later. You’ll have to stay tuned to see if he made it (those of you that follow us on Facebook and Instagram may already know the answer!)

 -Star Wars Weekend

-Last trip before our annual passes expire and we don’t go back until December (maybe). Usually that doesn’t mean anything because we always just renew in a few months anyway, but with Baby #2 on the way and the hot summer months, we’ll be taking a bit of a break and then going back to celebrate the retirement of our friend Carl (over at Dad’s Guide to WDW and WDW Magazine) in December.

 

Where we stayed:

Contemporary Resort for the first 2 nights, Pop Century for the remainder of the trip. The Contemporary was booked last minute so we could get to MK faster and more easily for the 24 hour event. I just posted a review of the Contemporary Resort with a bunch of photos and a video, go check it out!

 

We chose to leave on a Thursday. One of my coworkers was out of the office all week, so I had to push it later in the month, but this also allowed me to take advantage of a 3 day weekend and us to attend 2 special events at the parks.

Another note: Since I had my new camera with me, many of these photos will be from my camera or phone, with a few of Brett’s sprinkled in. Trust me, you’ll be able to tell whose photos came from whom. If you want to see more of Brett’s photos from this trip (there are a TON!) and every other trip we’ve taken, he shares at least one photo a day over on his Disney Photo Snapper Facebook page…go give him a like to see an amazing Disney photo in your feed every day! He also has an amazing giveaway going on now to win a large canvas print of one of his photos 🙂

 

So without further ado, let’s start with Day 1 – Thursday!

 

We woke up at 4am. And by we I mean I woke at 4 and then Brett and Trent woke up about 20 minutes later. Yes, Trent woke up just after 4 am after falling asleep at 11:30 the night before. It wasn’t even a cranky wake up either…he popped up and was happy and running around on the bed. We were confused too, but at least we didn’t have to tip-toe around to get ready and we had hoped this would translate to a nap in the car.

We left the driveway at 5:28…not bad.

We skipped getting breakfast right away since Trent had his chocolate milk (aka Ovaltine) and we weren’t that hungry yet. Instead, we stopped at Krystal’s about an hour into the drive. Nothing fancy here, just a place we normally stop at since we don’t have one at home and it’s different.

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We arrived at Animal Kingdom around 9:45am and we got a pretty decent parking spot.

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After entering, we took the train to Rafiki’s Planet Watch so Trent could see and pet the goats.

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As soon as we got off the train, Trent already started complaining because he wanted to walk instead of being held or sitting in his stroller, so we let him walk, which led to many “This way, Trent” or “Follow Daddy, Trent” phrases being said….those were said many times throughout the trip because he wanted to be Mr. Independent and walk on his own…both a good and bad thing at the same time.

Near the entrance, Chip and Dale were taking photos with hardly anyone in line, so we got in line, but when it was our turn, Trent got super shy all of a sudden. Then, after us, Chip and Dale left and Trent looked sad….that’s kind of how it happened the entire trip: he would be shy for most of the interaction, then he would be sad when they left.

Also, note to WDW: this is a terrible spot for character photos…look at the awful lighting!

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Once inside, we handed Trent a brush to use on the goats and he thought that was great! He stayed in this one little area where there were about 4-5 goats laying down in the shade and he would walk around and brush each one for a few minutes then go to the next one.

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Hidden Mickey!

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When he handed me the brush after a while, we took the opportunity to leave and head back to the train. Of course, with Trent walking on his own, we made plenty of stops along the way!

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Next up was the Pangani walking trail in Africa…and look who finally sat in the stroller! I think he was hot!

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You know it’s hot when you see this…

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It was about lunch time, but we weren’t too hungry yet but knew Trent should eat too, so we decided to split a meal at the Yak & Yeti counter service.

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We got the Honey Chicken and a chicken tenders kids meal. Trent ate the grapes and some tenders, and that was it, so we took the extra chicken from the kids meal and mixed it in with the honey chicken and it turned out to be a good enough amount to split…something Brett and I never do because we always want to eat something different (and we’re both fatties at Disney World).

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We had found a nice shaded table in the back corner. It was a good place to relax and enjoy our food.

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We then did the Maharajah Jungle Trek.

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Oooooh yeah…so up until this point in my pregnancy, I had zero swelling, but the running around the house like crazy to get ready combined with the 3.5 hour car ride must have caused some serious swelling. Wanna see?

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Whoa there! Luckily, it went down the next day and then was completely gone for the rest of the trip, but wow. Looks lovely, huh?

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When we noticed that the regular line for Expedition Everest was only 10 minutes, Brett jumped into the single rider line while Trent and I went to Dinoland to ride Triceratop Spin.

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Triceratop Spin had no wait, so we rode it twice. Trent did really well waiting in line for the next ride. I was very proud of him.

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Unfortunately, it’s in complete direct sun, so we were twice as hot and sweaty after riding it than we were before! But at least we got one ride in at the park before leaving…

Trent = Selfie-hater

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At this point, it was a good time to escape the heat and go check in at the Contemporary.

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Check in took quite long with them using gift cards for the balance and then checking to make sure our Passholder Magic Bands were valid and could be used. Even though I requested 1st floor (since I wanted to not have to walk or use the elevator as much – you know, being pregnant and all), we got the 3rd floor AND the main elevator was broken. I also requested late check out on Saturday so Brett could sleep a couple extra hours after being at the 24 hour event until 6am, but they denied that request. I guess you have to be concierge or a celebrity to have your requests granted at the Deluxe resorts…

Now that I’ve gotten that rant out of the way, since Trent slept while I checked in, he awoke as soon as I took him out of the car to go walk into the room, which I was kind of disappointed at because after waking up at 4am, I was kind of hoping for a nap too. The plan was to go to Epcot later in the evening, so I laid down with Trent to try to force him to go back to sleep and Brett hopped on the monorail over to Magic Kingdom, where he caught the Festival of Fantasy parade! Unfortunately, I never got to see this parade, but Brett saw it three times and absolutely loved it. So many colors and all the expressions from the characters make for fantastic photos.

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Brett also strolled back to the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train to see if they were letting people ride it. They were, but it wasn’t long before they had to stop for an extremely long time…all because someone’s hat flew off and landed directly on their sensors!

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Trent ended up not sleeping, and after an hour or so, Brett texted to say he was on his way back, so I started getting us ready. I looked up the available dining reservations at Epcot and snagged a Garden Grill reservation.

We jumped on the monorail to the TTC and then the Epcot monorail…so convenient!

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This lady is either really smart…or not so much. Sure, she is in a nice relaxing position, but she is directly in the sun! Maybe she was in the shade when she first got there and moved away from her. Have you ever wished someone would push you around in a stroller? I have!

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Our first stop was the Character Meeting Spot – which we had Fastpasses for, but they weren’t needed at all, as there was almost no line. Trent got excited when he saw each character, but then got shy when it was his turn. If you’ve never been in the character meeting spot, it’s really neat how you can jump from one character to the next in line…Mickey, Goofy, Minnie and Donald too sometimes (I think).

Kisses from Mickey.

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I think Trent prefers high-fives over kisses.

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Hugs from Goofy.

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But thumbs-up are much better too!

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We had a Fastpass for The Seas with Nemo & Friends for later on, but there was no wait when we walked by, so we decided just to do that since we had some time until our Garden Grill reservation.

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We spent a few minutes looking at fish, but Trent was more interested in running around, so we let him run right out and to Garden Grill. But not before failing miserably at getting a photo in Bruce.

As a reminder, here is our adorably cute 1 year old Trent in Bruce during our trip last June…a little blurry, but still cute.

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And now here is our stubborn 2 year old!

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He was trying to get down so bad that I couldn’t even move out of the way for the photo! But wait, maybe a glimpse of a smile?

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Nope, that’s all we got this time. Maybe next time.

While Garden Grill isn’t a place you’ve heard us rave about, they have consistently good food that Brett and I both enjoy. Plus, we tend to choose buffets or family-style places with Trent now since he can eat free. Their honey butter and warm rolls are delicious and I really like the beef and mashed potatoes.

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Trent got his own special plate with sweet potato fries, macaroni and cheese, broccoli and a chicken leg.

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He ate some sweet potato fries and actually took a few bites of macaroni and cheese. We were absolutely shocked, as he has never wanted mac and cheese. It was probably because there were goldfish on top lol.

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Dessert.

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Trent also gets his own special dessert, which he is definitely a fan of…a chocolate cupcake cone!

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This night, the restaurant wasn’t spinning, so here was our view the entire time.

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More particularly, here was MY view.

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Phones everywhere!

Another plus of Garden Grill is the character interaction. The restaurant was basically empty, so each character ended up passing by us at least 3 times!

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We originally planned on watching Illuminations that night, but decided the smarter choice would be to go back to the hotel so Brett could get to sleep a bit earlier. After all, he had an early EARLY wake up the next morning for the 24 hour Rock Your Disney Side Event!

One of the best things about Disney is that Disney Junior is on 24/7, so no matter what time it is, Trent can watch Disney Junior shows. We got back to the hotel, did the whole bath routine and then relaxed while watching Disney Junior. We all fell asleep about 11-11:30.

I hope you enjoyed reading Day 1 of our trip report. Sorry it took so long to get up…life has been quite hectic over here preparing for baby #2!

 

Click here to continue reading to Day 2!

 

You can read more of our Disney posts here:

 

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  • Jessica W
    Aug 7, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    LOVE!

  • Lindsay
    Aug 9, 2014 at 7:01 pm

    Your pictures are great — I feel as I’ve just been to Disneyworld myself!