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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Vacation: Hollywood Studios

We got up early to be at Hollywood Studio's Rope Drop, UNFORTUNATELY... we got stuck in the worst traffic I have ever seen and it took us over an hour to get there from the resort.  It goes without saying that people were getting angry on the bus... it didn't help that we were packed in like sardines.  However, in true Disney spirit, no one got out of control or mean.  I took the opportunity to chat with a concerned mother trying to figure out if her son would be able to ride Toy Story Midway Mania.  I showed her my Lines app and assured her that, although the line was already quite long, there were still plenty of FastPasses left for us late comers.

Nic and Kelly at the bus stop (Port Orleans, Riverside)

Our first stop: Tower of Terror.  Sisters together again in the World.

Hollywood Terror Hotel interior.  Love.

More shots of the interior.  It is designed to eerily look as if people were lounging around and suddenly... mysteriously disappeared. 

Starspeeder.  Enough said.

This was my sister's first time on the refurbished Star Tours, she really enjoyed it.  Funny sidenote: Nic, whose first language is Spanish, said that the safety translation before boarding is done with a ridiculous accent.

Pigs... in.... Sppppaaaaccceeee

Muppet Vision 3D, you will always be one of my favorites.

Getting into the Rock n' Roller Coaster Spirit


Close up of flowers in the Wizard of Oz room from the Great Movie Ride.  I don't care what anyone says about this, I think this is a classic ride and please do not update too much!

Sid Cohanga's, this shop used to have the neatest movie memorabilia.  It's much smaller now but still has some fun finds.

Everyone met up in the afternoon to have a drink and relax at the Tune-In Lounge, connected to the Prime Time Cafe:
Starburst clock... I will own you one day.  I just recently went to a Midcentry Modern expo and saw 5 or 6 of these but they were priiiicey. 

Those zebra wall plaques are fantastic

This silver tree was quite fun, there were little kitchenaid mixer ornaments

Dinosaur Gertie!


I'm doing my best Mary Tyler Moore impression.... terrible, yes, but isn't she fantastic?
I am mildly obsessed with models... you can imagine how much time I spend in One Man's Dream.  This, I believe, is a model of Adventureland.

A room in the Muppet Store, a nod to The Muppets Take Manhattan.

Yes, we are Disney Dorks.  Here we are waiting for the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights
No one in my family has ever had the chance to see the Osborne Family lights.  This was such a magical moment that I will never forget.  as we waited for the show to start on the Streets of America, there was eggnog, wine, and champagne available, the air was starting to chill and suddenly.... snow flurries!!  Not real ones of course, but even more special :)  Then, all at once, the thousands of sparkling lights came on and the crowd literally gasped in amazement.  I'm not ashamed to admit I got more than a little teary-eyed.  Pictures don't do it justice, but here are a few to give you an idea.  This is a MUST DO if you are in the parks during the holidays!

Panoramic view thanks to Nic

After the light show, we made our way to the Sci-Fi Dine In, my absolute favorite.  Indulge me as I shower you with photos:
The sign outside, the themeing of this restaurant just can't be beat
A billboard outside... giving you a hint of what's to come
The cars (or, more appropriately, converTABLES) are actually 3 booths that face the screen.  The night time scene, complete with twinkling lights and silhouettes of palm trees, transports you to Midcentury California.  Fun Factiod:  The license plates of the cars are from states with the most UFO sightings... ours was from Arizona. 

The old Intermission shorts are some of my favorites

For those of you that don't know, the loop on the screen is roughly 45 minutes or so long and comprised of 1950's B Sci Fi movie previews, commercials, and cartoons.

Walt and Garco!  Any Disney nerds remember President Gardo in the old Space Mountain televsion queue?

A great detail is that the kitchen is made to look like the concession stand.  Brilliant.
At one point our waiter insisted on getting photos of everyone smooching with their significant other... just like at the real movies....
Mom and Dad with a flying saucer in the background.  Best photo ever.

Me, kissing my wine in the absence of my hubby.  To be fair, it was quite delicious.

Kelly and Nic with the Sci Fi logo in the background.  Second best picture ever.

Now I know that Sci-Fi Dine In gets a lot of heat for their food but... come on, it's not supposed to be a four star dining experience... it's supposed to be a drive-in!!  I have always been more than happy with my veggie burger, fries, and adult beverage of choice.  Also, they have fun glowing ice cubes.  Something to note... there are picnic table styled tables with benches in the back that are available for walk-ins and are wheel chair accessible.

We finally made it to Toy Story Midway Mania, this queue is an attraction all in itself.  My favorite detail is the giant viewfinder with Disneyland slides.
Mr. Potato Head

After a long but tiring day at the parks, we were ready to relax with a drink while Yeehaw Bob entertained... and he is truly an entertainer!! 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Vacation: Non-Park Day

On our January trip we actually spent one entire day doing non-park activities... something we have always talked about doing:
The walk from our hotel room to the main area

The Sassagoula River cruise!

Nic, Kelly, and my Dad... we are on our way to Downtown Disney

My mother and I

View of the resort (Port Orleans Riverside, Magnolia bend)

A better view of one of the "mansions"
After lunch and some shopping at Downtown Disney, my sister, Nic, and I went miniature golfing at Winter Summerland, it was ADORABLE!

I bought this dress at the Polynesian the night before, it has birds of paradise on it! 

After golfing, we all went to the Animal Kingdom Lodge for a delicious dinner at Jiko
Christmas decorations were still out everywhere, including this giant and beautifully decorated tree in the lobby.

Some of the animals were out as the sun was setting!

Giraffes :)

After dinner we went back to the River Roost Lounge for a night cap

We were a bit tired but it was such a lovely evening!!