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Trip Report It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas! *COMPLETED*

The soothing croon of Michael Bublé kept reverberating in my mind as I pondered starting yet another trip report. Like summer, the Christmas season makes me happy. Going to WDW during the Christmas season makes me VERY HAPPY. The joy of sharing my trips with my WDWMAGIC friends makes me happier still. Thank you for the encouragement to keep on writing!

Holiday Vacation #1
When: November 16-23, 2019
Where: Disney’s Pop Century Resort and Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Who: Tuvalu and Woody

Looky! I finally got a Magic Shot!

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Okay, so it’s a bit creepy. But it leaves no doubt that this was a CHRISTMAS trip.

In mid-November. :hilarious:

But hey, we had Halloween in August!

And yours truly was very excited to experience Christmas decor at the resorts and in 3 of the 4 parks. (Epcot was still in full “Food and Wine” mode.) It wasn’t always this festive in November. We’ve been this same week in the past and outside of MK, there was very little decorating completed. I was so disappointed the year we stayed at WL (very close to turkey day) and missed out on the holiday stuff. I was worried the same thing would happen again. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Woody, on the other hand, is a “Let’s celebrate Thanksgiving before shifting our focus to Christmas” kind of guy. Growing up, his family did not put up their tree until CHRISTMAS EVE. (Can you imagine?!!) Over the years he has mellowed, thanks to my influence, and better tolerates the Christmas creep. Yet I was concerned that his inner Scrooge might reveal itself during this vacation.

I needn’t have worried. But I’m getting ahead of myself again.

Our week consisted of some new experiences and old experiences....some frustrations....some drama (of course!)....and a very magical meet.

Stay tuned.
 

Longers

Well-Known Member
Just caught up hence all the likes.

I might have to put that cider on a future wish list, as I don’t drink much but will enjoy a cider when I do.

And we all know how I feel about ice cream! You’re killing me with all the pictures. I need another holiday........

Not sure about that last photo - it looks kind of strange with that big fish - trout or whatever it is..... woody is such a good sport - Chris would have been the same if I would have tried to get him to do some of those photos.

Also love you got another Magicians meet up!
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
Wednesday, con’t

Silliest overheard comment of the day: “Is there a line?”

I had no idea what was being referenced but was tempted to reply, “There’s ALWAYS a line.”

It’s Disney, after all.

Our plan to ride SSE was thwarted since the attraction remained down. I was hoping Woody could do it one last time before SSE closes for its long refurb ~ but I seemed more upset about it than he did, so we popped into MouseGear to pick up our AP coasters.

Another wall!
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The joke was on us as the pick up location was not inside MouseGear as advertised. We roamed the entire store before asking a CM where the coasters could be found.

She directed us outside to the breezeway in front of the Electric Umbrella.

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Woody and I each got a set so that we could give one to Em, who was unable to attend Food and Wine. Minnie is her favorite character.

We had a bit of a wait for a bus back to WL.

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Pictured below is the display at the entrance to the WL Mercantile. This display featured Halloween merch when Woody and I last visited ~ on August 24, two full months before the holiday.

At least Christmas was only a little over a month away.

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Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
After a nice rest we headed back to Epcot for dinner. We were creative with our transportation.

Boat from WL to Contemporary.

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I just love me a sunset cruise!!

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Monorail to the TTC....

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....where we transferred to the Epcot monorail. We did not have to go through security screening for a second time at Epcot, as the monorail exit is now in a “secured” zone ~ HALLELUJAH!

Getting to dinner was not without its challenges however. Thanks to construction walls, there is no longer a straight, center path from Future World to World Showcase. Woody timed our low-crowd journey from SSE to here (remember foreshadowing? 😉) and it took 15 minutes.

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Loco_driver

Well-Known Member
where we transferred to the Epcot monorail. We did not have to go through security screening for a second time at Epcot, as the monorail exit is now in a “secured” zone ~ HALLELUJAH!
Yes! That was one of the most frustrating things about the Epcot entrance! Especially since the second bag check was at the always terrible Epcot bag check! So glad they fixed this issue!
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
It was lovely inside Le Cellier due to the holiday decor.

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There are very few intimate tables in this restaurant and we did not have the fortune of being seated at one. But we anticipated a top-notch meal with excellent service, since Le Cellier is a signature dining establishment.

Turns out our expectations were too high. We were treated to another performance of RUSHED.
Tonight’s episode: IS IT REALLY A SIG? A LE CELLIER DINING EVENT.

From the start it was clear that the servers were not signature staff trained. The hostess escorted us to our table, plopped down the menus and walked away. Our server rattled off the menu as if we were standing in front of a menu board at a quick service location. No manager ever came by to check on us. And we were never asked if we wanted another another drink or received refills of our water glasses.

It was very disappointing.

Fortunately the food was better than the service. The pretzel bread was yummy, but c’mon ~ only one stick for two people?!! It’s the house specialty!

DA6E03A1-4270-41D8-9481-1521A38E749C.jpeg


The pretzel bread is especially delicious when paired with the Cheddar Cheese Soup. We did not order the soup (which is a meal in itself) but if we had, I would have demanded more pretzel bread!

Woody did enjoy his Moosehead.

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Both of us went with the filet with mushroom risotto.

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While we agreed it was very good, not sure it was $59 good.

The Wave > Le Cellier. By a long shot.
 

93boomer

Well-Known Member
It was lovely inside Le Cellier due to the holiday decor.

View attachment 440934

View attachment 440935

There are very few intimate tables in this restaurant and we did not have the fortune of being seated at one. But we anticipated a top-notch meal with excellent service, since Le Cellier is a signature dining establishment.

Turns out our expectations were too high. We were treated to another performance of RUSHED.
Tonight’s episode: IS IT REALLY A SIG? A LE CELLIER DINING EVENT.

From the start it was clear that the servers were not signature staff trained. The hostess escorted us to our table, plopped down the menus and walked away. Our server rattled off the menu as if we were standing in front of a menu board at a quick service location. No manager ever came by to check on us. And we were never asked if we wanted another another drink or received refills of our water glasses.

It was very disappointing.

Fortunately the food was better than the service. The pretzel bread was yummy, but c’mon ~ only one stick for two people?!! It’s the house specialty!

View attachment 440937

The pretzel bread is especially delicious when paired with the Cheddar Cheese Soup. We did not order the soup (which is a meal in itself) but if we had, I would have demanded more pretzel bread!

Woody did enjoy his Moosehead.

View attachment 440936

Both of us went with the filet with mushroom risotto.

View attachment 440939

While we agreed it was very good, not sure it was $59 good.

The Wave > Le Cellier. By a long shot.
Oh that’s a shame. We had thought of eating here our next trip. Guess that’s scratched off the list.
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
Woody and I had planned to stay in Epcot to watch Epcot Forever. I’ll admit to cheating and watching the show on YouTube and while I wasn’t thrilled with the little kid vocals on the classic (vintage?) Epcot songs, I was hopeful the show would play better live.

But I still don’t know if it does.:confused:

We left Le Cellier over an hour before EF was slated to start. The night was chilly, our feet were tired from all the steps we’d taken today and we just weren’t feeling it. I figured I’d have other opportunities to see the show over the next several months, since the HarmonioUs premier date hadn’t been speculated. (Turns out I was wrong again. HarmonioUS debuts in the spring.)

We made the convoluted trek through Future World to the exit and were delighted to discover a bus waiting for us.

We enjoyed the warmth and holiday spirit of the lobby upon our return.

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Of course missing Epcot Forever did not mean we sacrificed fireworks. We found our Happily Ever After from our balcony.

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Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
Thursday, November 21

We were down to our last two days of vacation. Why is it the last half of a vacay always goes by soooo much quicker than the first half?

The cold Woody had been fighting all week intensified overnight. (He was a real trooper in powering through the rest of the trip.) I went to Roaring Fork and picked up breakfast for us so he could rest a little longer.

MK was on our agenda and we opted to take the boat rather than the bus.

ACFBEBAE-778B-4827-AFE2-641AE1F57FFE.jpeg


I love me a sunny morning cruise too!!

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9E13C237-CC69-4121-9F53-C73503D81C37.jpeg


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Pretty entrance picture.

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Not-so-pretty entrance pictures.

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The new permanent security checkpoint structure was complete only a couple weeks later!
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But the walls were still there!

74CF6689-B95B-4BF0-885B-67F398F52D56.jpeg


There was a woman on our boat wearing a shirt which I had to read twice before I “got” it.

Simba was walking too slow
So I told him to Mufasa
 

PacNWTigger

Well-Known Member
Thursday, November 21

We were down to our last two days of vacation. Why is it the last half of a vacay always goes by soooo much quicker than the first half?

The cold Woody had been fighting all week intensified overnight. (He was a real trooper in powering through the rest of the trip.) I went to Roaring Fork and picked up breakfast for us so he could rest a little longer.

MK was on our agenda and we opted to take the boat rather than the bus.

View attachment 440956

I love me a sunny morning cruise too!!

View attachment 440957

View attachment 440958

View attachment 440959

Pretty entrance picture.

View attachment 440961

Not-so-pretty entrance pictures.

View attachment 440962

View attachment 440963

The new permanent security checkpoint structure was complete only a couple weeks later!
View attachment 440964

But the walls were still there!

View attachment 440966

There was a woman on our boat wearing a shirt which I had to read twice before I “got” it.

Simba was walking too slow
So I told him to Mufasa
I had to say the shirt saying out loud in order to get it...LOL!!
source.gif
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
No rushing down Main Street this morning. Had to send a few pix to @TrolleyFollower91. I did have some Mama guilt that I was watching the performers she loves.

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Let’s hear it for the pooper-scooper! Though he has one of the most under-appreciated jobs in the MK, he sings anyway!

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I witnessed a sweet encounter between a senior PP CM and a senior couple. She was telling them to act like teenagers in love...

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...and helped pose them.

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Wish I could have seen the finished product.

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Swissmiss

Premium Member
I feel for Woody - I was starting to come down with something the day we spent at HS. I don’t even think I stayed 2 hours that day. Between not feeling great AND heavy crowds (it was 3 Jan) all I wanted was to get someplace peaceful. My DD happily agreed to return to the resort with me (she knows when her mamma has hit a wall) and she even helped me do the laundry that afternoon (with grumbling!).
 

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