Thursday, April 19, 2012

Disney - Day 7 (Last Day)

And so it was the last day!  Cry!  While the week felt like it didn't go too terribly fast, because it was the last day it was hard to believe that we'd been there a whole week.  We'd packed so much in but there was still so much we didn't get to see/do.  But the last day it was and we made the most of it.  Our flight wasn't until 5:30pm but because of the way Magical Express works, they pick up you 3 hours before your flight which meant we had to be ready to go at the resort at 2pm.  That doesn't leave much time in the park and we wanted to max it out, so we were ready to go at 7:15am when the bell desk came a knockin'.  I was so proud of us.  We loaded up, got on the luggage cart, and sped over to the bell desk.  We checked our checked luggage right there at the resort so we could bypass the luggage check line at the airport (this is such an awesome way to travel!).  Then we checked our remaining carry on bags with the bell desk and scooted right over to the bus stop and boarded a bus for Hollywood Studios.  We were literally on the bus just after 7:30am.  (My parents and Kevin/Kelly had a 7:30am pickup from bell services scheduled but it didn't work out as seamlessly as it did for us and they didn't arrive at the park until almost 8:30.)  

We arrived at Hollywood Studios at about 7:50 - the park had Extra Magic Hours from 7am-8am which meant that all the non-resort guests were lined up waiting for 8am to get in.  But not us, we zoomed in and ran up the main street headed for Toy Story Mania.  Even before the big crowds got there at 8am, the line was already nearly an hour long AND fast pass was for 10:30am.  This was one of the main reasons we had wanted to get there early because we knew that if we didn't the earlier fast passes we would have to wait in a long line for that ride.  (My parents and Kevin/Kelly ended up waiting in line for an hour because they couldn't use the later fast passes and didn't want to miss the ride.)

So with fast passes in hand for later, we had time to do things and no lines to deal with.  All three kids wanted to ride Star Tours (Caroline and Piper for the first time), but Jason said no to that.  So while we braved a pod race, Jason went into Tattooine Traders and built himself a light saber.  When we came out of the ride, he surprised Bryce with his creation with promises of battles when they got home.  But because we no longer had access to our checked bags and because light sabers are considered a weapon on a plane (yes, plastic light sabers), we knew we wouldn't be able to carry it on so Jason had it sent home.  (It arrived the Thursday after we got home.)

Next, Jason said that Caroline really wanted to do the Backlot Tour since she didn't get to go on Tuesday, so he took her on that ride while Bryce, Piper and I saw the Muppets 3D show.  Bryce and I hadn't seen it before because of the Jedi Training.  But before we split up, we got this picture.  I can't tell you the amount of hollering we had to do to get this photo.  All they wanted to do was run around the fountain and splash water everywhere.  Sigh.

When Bryce, Piper and I came out of the Muppets show, there was a super short line to meet Phineas and Ferb!  Piper wanted NOTHING to do with them but Bryce was excited.  They were funny guys - totally messed with Bryce.  After that he had the chance to go and see life sized Mater and McQueen but he had no interest, so we met up with Jason and Caroline.

From there we went and finally participated in the Magic of Animation drawing class.  I really need to scan/photograph what we drew.  Caroline kind of messed up her first attempt at Pluto and then was in a funk and wanted to do it again. (Photo is a little blurry because they didn't allow flash photography and I didn't have my settings right.)  So Bryce, Piper and I went over to see the Voyage of the Little Mermaid while Jason and Caroline went through the class again - they drew Jimmeny Cricket.

The funny thing about the Little Mermaid is that Bryce didn't quite understand what was going on and we asked him if he wanted to do the class again or go and see the mermaid show.  For some reason he walked with me and by the time we were getting in line he realized what he committed to and was NOT happy.  I wasn't comfortable letting him walk back to Animation on his own since I didn't know if Jason was still outside and I couldn't walk him back because we'd lose our place in line and the show was getting ready to let people in.  So he pouted and said grumpy things the entire time. Piper was looking forward to it though so I ignored him.  When we got inside the theater and sat down, he said he wasn't going to watch, but he did.  He made me laugh when he said, "THIS IS THE WORST!" and covered his face, but I caught him watching.  I wonder if they'll stop doing this show once they open the new mermaid ride in the Magic Kingdom next year?

We finished Little Mermaid and met up with Jason and Caroline and headed to Toy Story Mania.  Fun!!!  Although a little tough for a family of five since everyone wants to join target practice!  I loved how lively and fun the waiting area was inside and while the ride was fun, I was kind of surprised how much the ride was like the Buzz Lightyear ride in the Magic Kingdom - target practice.  I'm glad we didn't have to wait in the super long line for it.

We decided to have an early lunch together nearby (our first meal out of pocket!) at one of the quick service places and decide what we wanted to do.  Jason and Bryce wanted to see the Extreme Car Stunt Show but the girls did not.  (I kind of wanted to as well.)  The girls just wanted to play on the Honey I Shrunk the Kids playground.  So the boys went and did their thing and we did ours.  I sat down in the playground and watched.

Piper was easy to keep track of and at one point hurt her leg and came over to sit with me.  It was at that point, I realized I hadn't seen Caroline in a little while.  She was wearing a bright yellow shirt, so she should be easy to find, right?  I walked all over that playground looking for her and started to get a little worried after my second lap without seeing her.  Plus it was starting to rain.  I asked a cast member for help, showed him a photo of her on my camera from that morning, and he started looking too.  A few minutes later, he found her.  There are some "caves" that I didn't know about where she had been hiding out with another girl - they were keeping people from coming in.  I was appreciative to find her though and told her I had been looking for her.  I asked her if she wanted to go and see the "Disney Channel Rocks" concert and she excitedly agreed. At this point, it started raining kind of hard but in the time it took me to get the ponchos out and on all of us, it stopped raining.  So we took them back off and strolled toward the Mickey hat.  Caroline had to stop for a photo in "New York."

We got to the concert spot and ran into my parents who had also just had lunch.  We had a good spot for the concert and out it came.  They were singing lots of familiar Disney Channel show/movie songs.

Caroline stood and watched for about 1 minute and then went over under a tree with Piper and played in the dirt.  Guess she wasn't that interested.  So rather than stand there and listen to something we weren't that interested in, we ran over and got into the next showing of the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular.

Jason and Bryce's show was just letting out around then and they were hoping to join us but they arrived just as they closed the doors.  Boo.  So they sat outside and had some ice cream and waited for us.  Caroline really liked the stunt show.  I saw it twice in 1992 and they haven't changed it at all.  Not a line, so I was kind of bored.  (Plus, my dad had it on video so I think I watched it a few times after we came back too.)  We came out of the show, finally managed to find Jason and Bryce and realized we needed to leave right away.  Boo.

We made it back to the resort in plenty of time and the kids had some time to pick up a few little parting gifts at the resort store before leaving.  I used our last few snack credits up too and we sat and waited for the Not-So-Magical Express (what I'm calling the bus to the airport when you leave - there's nothing that magical about leaving Disney).  I took a few last pictures and then put the camera back in the big camera bag for the plane. (Told you Bryce wore that hat like a CHAMP all week!)

The lobby was just so pretty and Piper, just so wild!

The ride to the airport was uneventful and we arrived with enough time that we could get settled and get a quick bite to eat before boarding.  We started boarding just after 5pm and were up in the air just as scheduled.  Piper fell asleep before we took off and slept for an hour - thank goodness - she was crabby!  I tried to doze off but Caroline kept talking to me but that was okay since I rarely get time to just talk to her.  We sat and talked about the trip and remembered all the little things we had done.  We touched down in Baltimore a little ahead of time and had to sit and wait for the plane that was at our gate to leave.  Even so, we managed to get our luggage and get back to the long term parking lot before 8pm.  Brrr, it was chilly after being in the heat of Orlando for a week.  That was one of the saddest parts of all!

We said good bye to my parents and Kevin/Kelly and promised we would do this again.  It really was a truly wonderful, magical trip.  Even Jason is ready to go back.  We initially said maybe in 5-7 years but now I don't think we want to wait that long.  Who knows?  The only thing I know is that I would prefer the next time we go not to have a stroller and have all children carry their own back pack.  But that's for another blog thoughts on Disney.

1 comment:

Laura said...

Sounds like a great trip - you certainly did pack a lot in! I enjoyed reading about your week, and I'm curious what your "thoughts on Disney" will be.

I've been to Disney only once (it happened to be as an adult), and loved it. I want very much to take my kids some day, but the amount of planning required when you have kids just completely overwhelms me!