Saturday, January 10, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 11

Our last day :(
Home :)

Hubby and I woke up early to the sound of fireworks??? Oh, yeah, that's how they start the races... so we quickly realized the half marathon was starting.
At first I thought, no problem... I will just go back to sleep... HA!
So the fireworks go off for each corral... tee hee, silly me. [Editor's note: The WDW Half and Full Marathons have corrals from A-P, so it was fireworks every 5 minutes or so for an hour and a half]

Then we remembered they were live streaming the race... oh bother.. now I need to see what I am hearing. And now it's all over... I am awake and thinking of coffee.
So we grabbed a laptop and found the live stream. It was fun to watch the last half of the corrals go and now we knew when to expect the fireworks to stop.

Once everyone was off and running the rest of the family started to wake.... we took it easy and planned on breakfast in the room with some fresh things picked up from Goods to Go to supplement.

Beyond breakfast it was time to pack up and get checked out.

Sooo, Owners Locker - are you ready to hear more?
It's a big plastic purple box, It lives in Orlando at a storage facility and we can fill it with the things we don't want to carry back and forth. They great people at "Owners Locker" bring it to wherever we stay when we check in, and then come back and pick it up when we are done. Awesome!
We have known about it for years, but never felt we had a need for it.. but we changed our minds.
With hubby going out once a year for races and then the whole family coming every other year in addition to that... there are items we could leave in our locker. We didn't think it would be enough to save us a checked bag. But there are items we seem to buy every trip and then have to throw away when we leave... now we can pack them up in our purple box and have them next time - YAY!!!

And boy did we pack it! Wow, the whole trip, we kept thinking of items we wished we had and then decided... hey, lets put that in our owners locker!
Plus the things we already knew we wanted to take to leave in the locker... 'cause we never wear our Mickey ponchos at home :(  - We filled it up and dropped it off at Bell services to be picked up later that day.

Once we were packed we loaded up and headed to the Poly.
I talked hubby into one last table service meal and you never have to twist my arm to eat at the Kona Cafe. We were able to get lunch reservations, so it was easy enough.

We really didn't have plans after lunch, but we had several hours before our flight. During lunch hubby had a great idea to rent a boat and enjoy Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon... sounded perfect. After we ate, we hopped on the monorail - we got off at the Contemporary and headed to the water. Our time our in the pontoon was great fun.

After a short monorail ride back to the Poly we remembered the new Dole Whip window!!!
Gotta have one... and why not share :)

Well, that ate up our extra time, so to the airport we went.
We picked up food to eat for dinner. The flight home was uneventful... which was a nice change of pace :)

Cool plane... this one isn't ours, its headed to Canada

Friday, January 9, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 10

10K and our last EARLY morning.

This morning was very very early for Hubby. The 10K started at 5:30, which translates to leaving the room before 4 am.
The kids and I didn't follow him to cheer. We talked about it, but ultimately decided keeping kiddos happy while watching and waiting for dad might not be easy :)

Hubby had a good race and returned back to the room to shower and recover, before a Character breakfast at 9:30...  its amazing how long the morning lasts when you get up before 4 ;)

Nice bling!
We had a nice leisurely breakfast with Pooh bear and friends.
Our little lady discovered a new love of Croissants.

On a side note... on our previous visit to the MK our little lady lost her camera. It was a new camera she had purchased for herself with Christmas money. We thought she had lost it on 7 dwarfs mine train... that it might have fallen out of her purse pocket and into the seat pocket, when she put her bag in it.
The day we lost it we popped into guest services twice to see if it had been turned in.. nope. But we were given the number for the big lost and found and told to call the next day. I forgot to call - I knew they kept cameras for a while, so as long as we checked before we left to go home - if it was turned in... we could still get it back. But really what was the likelyhood of all that?
So, this morning at breakfast I remembered!!! CALL LOST AND FOUND.
After we ate I found a quiet place and made the call. And they had her camera. They asked some questions to determine if the camera she was holding was really ours... how old was the person who had taken the pictures... when I said she was 8, the cast member was pleased. Apparently you can tell by the subject matter? Also asked who might be in the pictures and what landmarks might be pictured. Once she was comfortable with it being our camera... it was labeled with our names and set in the front for pick up from the Lost and Found at the TTC.

The kids and I had plans to ride some stuff and maybe shop... hubby planned to tag along... then go get a massage.
We enjoyed the park til early afternoon. Then hubby headed out - he planned to pick up the camera and then go to his massage. The kids and I stayed a bit longer then grabbed a bus back to the room.

waiting for his favorite attraction in MK... no joke. 
Hi Ho, Hi Ho.. down the hill we go.

Meeting Elsa

Dinner tonight was pizza in the room, and it was delivered shortly after hubby returned from his massage. Good timing.

Using our new books to learn to draw characters. Forgive the unmade bed :) 

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 9

Race Day - 5K and Kids races

Today is the day I have worried over, prepared for, and over thought, for months and months. It's finally here and it's Freezing!
How on earth could I have planned for that?
38° in Florida, when just days before I was thinking I should have packed shorts.
Well 38° was when I woke up. Over the morning it warmed up to the low 40s.

Anyway. The cold weather was our main obstacle. Yes, the race started early: 6:15 am. And yes there were 10 thousand people... But the kicker for both kids was the cold. And just when you thought you were getting used to the cold.... The wind would pick up.....oh dear me. My sweet boy was fairly certain this was the worst plan we had ever had.
If you've done big race events like this you know about queuing into corrals. This was originally a concern of mine for our sensory sensitive kiddo. But today the only way to stay warm was to be packed in like sardines. And he did it. Mostly burying his head into me or dad. He even wanted an arm around him. So clearly cold trumps all.

getting into the corrals

walking toward the start line

But the race started and our corral went. And he did great. We walked with our friends and it was so nice.

Hubby and our little lady had a faster pace, Running and walking. They finished about 15 mins before us. And then met us at the finish line.

Stopping for a pic about halfway around

Woooo Hoo! Almost done! 

Somehow for the race itself, we weren't really cold. But the walk back to the car it hit us again. Bbbnrrrrrrrrrrr

Back in the room warm baths or showers followed by a second breakfast was a good way to recover.

Next event today was the kids races. And the lady was ready!
It was neat to watch and she had a good time. She did the 400 meter dash and the Mickey mile.

Pic in front of the 5K sign

with her 5K medal

View of the track - Kids Races

There she goes!!!!

Chillin at ESPN Sports 

After all the racing was complete for the day, we headed to Animal kingdom.

We had a short to do list at AK, and we were ahead of schedule.

Great animal viewing on the Safari today! 

Look! We are still on our feet!!! Help us!  
Braving Expedition Everest

We enjoyed the animals and the rides at Animal Kingdom for about 3 hours. Then it was time to eat dinner... and we were hungry. 
Pasta was calling -- to Noodles and Co we went. 

The weather was nice, but really never got warm today. So I guess this is winter in Florida?

We were heading to bed early tonight. We were up early today, but hubby is getting up earlier tomorrow to run the 10K.
Night night.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 8

Studios day

Each day is harder to get up than the day before.... Oh dear. So eating breakfast in the room today meant my extra snoozing didn't hurt our schedule too badly.
We enjoyed morning at the Studios today. Doing two new things for our son. He resists new things, so he had a few alternate ideas for this time, but reluctantly gave in. In the end both new experiences we deemed "ok" and he might possibly do them again....some day.

Hat is coming down... so this is the last pic I will take of it.
Bye Hat!

After lunch we buzzed out to ESPN'S Wide World of Sports complex for packet pick up. Which means our race is TOMORROW!!!

Pick up went smoothly and we grabbed a few items from the expo before heading back to the room.
We were able to connect with some friends who are also out for the race. They came by our resort and hung out for a while. It was fun to see them here. And we hope to find them at the race tomorrow.

Dinner was take out from Qdoba, a familiar choice from home. And bed early, despite our neighbors' best efforts.

Sunset coming back to resort.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 7

Magic Kingdom

Quote of the day
"Hmm, that was not the most welly constructed sentence"

So I'm tired today.
Getting up was harder today than previous days. I have an eye cream sample that has caffeine in it... I used it this morning.
We breakfasted at Captain Cook's in the Poly. It was the first time we have done this early in the morning and it was empty... Lovely. We were on the monorail to the Magic Kingdom with little trouble.

Magic Kingdom is about to open!!! 

So now we should talk about our park plans. This trip we (and by We I mean my husband) have organized our Disney days using - and wow are they organized. We have never been sooo efficient in our park touring.

We usually are more "Whatcha wanna do now" and "Hey, look over there... Ooo, Shiny". So this well planned approach is new and confusing to me. Where is the time in each ride's shop? And when do I get my assorted, churro, roast nuts, Mickey bar etc. However, after two days of seeing more than we have seen in four days on previous trips, I am seeing the upsides. [Editor's note: Said husband was trying to find a solution to the problem of seeing everything everyone wanted to see in the parks while still leaving the parks by 4:00 or 5:00 in the afternoon so that we could get to bed early -- since some of our days this trip require getting up before 4:00 AM]

So with the same meticulously crafted plan we tackled the Magic Kingdom. And we ruled. Making a few strategic decisions along the way we left the park earlier than originally planned. And were able to have a more relaxing evening.... And get off achy feet. yay!

Enjoying the Magic Carpet ride

Lines aren't bad at all this morning. 

We had good timing :) 
Proof of the time :) it was 9:30 am when we were finishing Small World.  

Defeating Emperor Zurg takes focus, skill and....

intense concentration.... we had none of those ;) 

Random thoughts...
It's construction season here. Sometimes you really can't get there from here. Sigh.

Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake.

I wasn't on board with the whole magic band thing when they announced it back when. But I am converted. They are cool. And a must for young'ns. We observed someone bringing a lost little girl to guest services. English was not her first language. She was probably 6 years old. And with her magic band's help, cast members were calling her dad's cell phone in less than 5 mins.
My kids will be wearing magic bands in the parks.

Ok, her dad didn't pick up, but that's not on the magicband.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Running (walking) with Disney - Day 6

Day 6

Quote O' the Day:
"You didn't tell me when you wanted to be spontaneous...  I would've put it in the plan."

Epcot day!
Breakfast at Olivia's right here at our resort. Yum... Banana bread French toast. I couldn't finish it all.

We arrived and got a great parking spot, according to hubby. Now to activate our passes. With Magicbands and Fastpass+ a few things are different since we last had annual passes. No more voucher, it's all electronic... So we needed to do a little bit at the ticket booth, but it worked great and we were in line in no time.

Walking into Epcot. :)

First stop, Test Track. The kids designed an amazing vehicle and tested it with Dad. I got a shopping preview through MouseGears and met them at Mission Space, where we assumed our usual roles.

The Kids' Test Track creation
Hands in the air, like they just don't care

Ok, let me stop here for a minute.... Probably at least half of the posts on this blog are Disney related. And there gets to be a point when saying "then we rode this, and next we rode that, and then we rode this", gets a bit old. So if you don't mind I will skip all that. And hit some highlights and random thoughts, kind of like on our Busch Gardens day...

Once our morning rides were completed, we lunched in Mexico. And were amused by the White Ibis acting like sea gulls in the outside eating area.
As our afternoon finished up in world showcase we snacked in France. And then we returned to Future World to finish the last few rides we missed this morning.

I did a wee bit of shopping along the way. I did not get a Starbucks at the Epcot location, as that line was longer than any ride line had been so far.

After Epcot we came back to the room briefly before heading to Downtown Disney for dinner and yes more shopping

Wolfgang Puck Express was yummy. The new Co-op set of Disney boutique stores were fun, but the real money was spent at Worlds of Disney. I bought myself a nice dressier watch.

We hit the Westside for some running socks for hubby and discovered some of the fun navigating downtown Disney during its expansion... A little nutty.

A full moon at Downtown Disney

But the bus is definitely the way to go right now. Just saying.