Hanwill's Surprise trip


I did pre- TR, but here is the cast of characters:
me- the trip planner
my DH-reluctant to go because he is too busy at work
my DD-12-tinkerbell
myDS-9-mr. football
myDS-10 months-bear bear

my parents- Memommy and Nangy (pronounced like tangy but with an N)

Here is the background story…

We had been planning this for months, with my parents… They were on a cruise the week before the trip and they were due to arrive back in Tampa on Thursday. They were going to come through town to pick the kids up from school so they could spend the week with them (and I could get them packed). On Friday, my husband picked the kids up from school and told them that the grandparents had car trouble and we had to go get them.

So we left Atlanta about 4:00- an hour later than we meant to. We inched through normal afternoon traffic south of town. I was planning on going as far as we could before we told the kids that we were going to WDW. Well, about Macon, my son starts asking all kinds of questions about where my parents were. So we decided to stop in Macon for dinner. As we were getting out of the car, I asked the kids “What did Eli Manning say when he won the Super Bowl?”. Both immediately answered, “I’m going to Disney world”. Well, I just sat there. And the looked at me waiting for the punchline… I gave them a prize for answering correctly. They were shirts that said “I’m going to Disney World”. i then had to tell them that Memommy and Nangy were waiting on us down there…

Then they got excited. They were stunned really. They could barely et their dinner…

After dinner we got into the car and i told them where we were staying and eating:

First night: All Star Sports
Rest of the trip: PO Riverside

Dining reservations:

Crystal Palace
Liberty Tree Tavern
Via Napoli
Le Cellier
Sci Fi
50’s Prime Time Cafe
Tusker House
The new mexican restaurant
The Plaza
Cinderella’s Royal Table
Chef Mickey’s

For the trip- I am going to give you our impressions of what we did and my thoughts on each park, and what was new and different-since i had not been in 18 months.

Here is the link to the shirts that they got:
’‘I’m Going to the Walt Disney World Resort!’’ Tee for Adults | Tees | Disney Store

The were cute.

We arrived at WDW about midnight and it looked like it was about 7pm at All SS… It was a zoo. By the time we got into our room, and got the crib and got to bed it was about 1:30am. We had no plans for the next day, so that was great.

Our plan for Saturday was to tour the hotel, walk around, and then make our way over to the other hotel to check in…

The only glitch in the trip was at check in, and it was minor. I wanted connecting rooms, and we had adjoining rooms when we got checked into Parterre Place (which was gorgeous, btw). I had them move us (the bellman took care of switching our rooms with the front desk) to new rooms that were connecting, and we got the last connecting rooms in building 28. Newly renovated rooms, which were very nice (and I am a hotel room snob). So, we were farther to the bus, and the main room, but the walk was not too bad… We through our bags in, and ran off to our next activity.

The boys went golfing, as a surprise to my son. The girls went for tea at the GF.


This sounds like a wonderful trip. We stayed at Parterre Place last January and, against all odds, loved it as well.

I am excited to read more. don’t forget to post your picachures :biggrin:


I had the unique experience of seeing a value, a moderate, and a deluxe all in one day. All I can say is Wow-there really is a difference…
The lobby of the GF (and later in the week, the Contemporary) smelled so good. Kinda like baby powder- LOVED IT!
The Poly smelled good too- more like fresh grass/bamboo smell, but still good…

The hotels all seemed very clean, very well maintained, and very much serving all of their guests… I did overhear one family ask as they were checking into the GF if they were dressed appropriately for the hotel. The manager told them that this was a resort, and resort clothing was totally acceptable within all areas of the resort except V&A’s… I though it was a funny question. In all resorts there seemed to be a lot of employees, but at the GF, there were a ton of people…


Ok, I have to remember how to add pictures… but I will- I took 2500 pictures over the course of 9 days. I was asked on the french pavilion if I was the paparazzi because of my big 'ol camera.


Well, after tea, which was DELICIOUS, we wandered around the hotel, and rode the monorail to the POLY. Wandered around there for a little while, and then headed back to the GF. We got our car and drove back to out resort. It seemed so humble compared to the GF, but very well done, and it almost seemed new. I will post a picture of that later.

By the time that the boys got through playing golf-which they loved, It was dinner time, and everyone was tired from the late night before (and the ones before that getting ready to go), so we decided instead of going to Beaches and Cream for a kitchen sink, that we would just eat in the quick service in the hotel and get a good nights sleep. WE were all tired, and the trip had not even started… but that was OK! We had an ADR with pooh for the next day!


My impressions of the MK. Well, it was part walled city, part all new stuff, part all familiar stuff. I kinda felt like everything was being worked on, everywhere we went… and it was all different, but all familiar at the same time.

I felt like the Sit down reservations and character meals were very well organized where you did not feel like you were rushed but there were no hiccups, or waiting for your table.

AT the Quick service meals, (Pinnochio for the first day) there was an attendant posted at each door ushering you to the main door to enter- from there you had to go through the line and be seated with the whole party. No more getting table while someone else orders… actually it freed up tables, and they were very helpful to help us get a table for 7 very quickly…

It felt crowded the whole day in the MK, but lines for rides were not bad, but it was congested in the walkways…and it was COLD!!!


I wil post more pictures, and give my overall impressions of the MK, all the rides were working except that walled off Dumbo, and Big Thunder MTN…
I felt like there was a real sense of maintenance gong on everywhere. After my last trip I was worried that everything was going downhill…

My faith was restored after 10 minutes in the MK, It looked freshly painted almost everywhere. The only place that I noticed needed painting was a post at the train station where the paint had worn off the knob on top of the rail. (yes, I am that picky)…but sadly I did not take a picture of that…


Day 2 was Epcot

We were entering the parks later than our usual, but the crowds to get in were unreal… Lines moved relatively quickly, and we were in… Here, It felt just like always, but well organized.

On this day, I really started using the new Disney app that gives you wait times. Inside the parks, It was very helpful. It knew exactly where I was- hotels and all… It would tell you the wait times (5 min, 10 min, 75 min, etc.), or what was the current fast pass time for that ride. If it was down- it might tell you that too- if it was al all day thing… Very helpful app in this park to check times…


Let i.e. known that I LOVE flowers… I was in love with the flowers at the Flower and Garden festival. LOVE… Those landscapers really do a fantastic job. I always notice the flower beds at the parks, but here they were really amazing.


loving the TR and the photos; that big paparazzi camera is doing it’s job! the photos are gorgeous!


I love the way you told your kids about the trip!! WOW!! That will be a great memory for all of you!!

I’m loving all the pictures, and can’t wait to hear more details about your trip.


Oh please, I need more! I am hanging on every word. I love your pics and can’t wait to see more.


HA! Thanks… More coming- just have to get the kids from school… it might be later tonight. I have just a few more pictures too- I took 2500 in all over the course of a week… I am a picture junkie. I’ll take a picture of anything. Almost.


Oh I am loving your TR and the photos are just awesome, more please!


Your little DS and DD are soo cute! Great TR and pictures! I’m looking forward to more!


I just love all these topiary. Epcot must smell amazing


I’ve been waiting for this report!:happy:

Stunned kids! Excellent!! I’m so glad you loved Tea at the GF - it’s one of our favourite things to do. Love the topiaries! More please!


Ok, I am trying to think where I was…

Oh yes, Epcot. We ate at Le Cellier (which had been a few years), and at Via Napoli- we liked it and we loved the waiters- they were so much fun. We would go back, but we would try the pizza next time… None of us got it…

Here are more pictures from that day:

Guess what the last picture smelled like? The whole little area smelled like STRAWBERRIES… Just like the stuffed animal. Exactly- they are genius!


(oops, that top one was of my Dh, and I am choosing these pics off mini pics about the size of the return button on the computer…)

Here are some more topiaries:

The vases in the last picture are in Via Napoli, and I just loved them…


Ok, so this Day was Ak. We ate at Tusker House for Breakfast… Love the Jungle Juice. For lunch we ate at restaurantasaurus… Just because that was where we were and we had pushed lunch back that day because we were playing around…

All of the rides were easy to get on, The safari was better even though they were still saving little Red. I saw part of the track for the Wild Africa trek while on the safari, and I saw Jeeps going into places that I wanted to go with tourists on the back. I felt a little like I was watching a safari jeep on TV. It was funny, but I could never get a picture quickly enough… all that darn bouncing in the truck.

Overall, I really like AK, and I am glad that it is not a full day park because it gives me a chance to rest. It was as fabulous as ever and it looked in tip top shape. We finished the park-even though we did not see any shows this time, and took the kids back to the hotel for swimming- well, I took a nap… luckily there are no pictures of that!