Completed Trip Report! ****What? Am I crazy? Disney during Thanksgiving week?!?! ****

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Allie's picture
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Have an awesome time! We're right behind you! yay

JMed's picture
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Just saw this little nugget on the DVC Central Facebook page wait times from earlier today.....

ugguh

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"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Allie's picture
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Yikes!!! Clear those crowds out of there for us before we get there, mmkay? biggrin

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Hello and Welcome Home!!! We made it!

Alarm went off at 5:15 (I was awake at 4:50) I roused everyone from their slumber yelling "It's Disney Day!!!!!!" yeah

We all got up, got dressed finished packing the truck and was pulling out of the driveway at 6am! Our first stop was to fill up the truck and grab drinks to go with our breakfast. Joe brought Krispy Kreme home so I was a happy girl!

I bought Blondie 6 small gifts for the ride down. She got one every hour. It kept her occupied and happy and we worked on her math figuring out how much longer until the next one. She loved them all and thank goodness when I went in the Disney Store in Atlanta, they were already having their Black Friday sale. The most expensive thing (not counting her gift card) was $9.00!!!

We pulled into Jacksonville around 10 and really really wanted to stop at 4 Rivers for lunch so we ran into Target for a couple things we needed to waste time. We were 2nd in line at 4 Rivers and it was phenomenal as usual! As we were eating I got a text at 11:11 that our room was ready!

The rest of the drive was uneventful, traffic slow down in Orlando as usual and happy tears as we drove under the big Welcome to Disney sign!

We are in Pumbaa this time 5th floor and we have seen TONS of animals so far including a baby zebra that I just want to hug! bighug

Blondie and Joe just took off for the pool while I rest (I wish I could sleep at night waiting ) before heading to Raglan Road for dinner. We are going to take the bus (not my favorite but Joe wants to) so I plan on leaving in plenty of time for our 7:15 reservation. I also want to go by the box office to pick up our La Nouba tickets for Thursday and take care of Blondie's annual pass. We didn't get a green card for her in the mail so I hope this is easy.

Until tomorrow, have a magical evening everyone!

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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ok, finally got the pics from my phone, it was acting wonky earlier.....

PreviewAttachmentSize
Goodies each hour
Goodies each hour803.64 KB
random drive down pics
random drive down pics869.22 KB
Welcome Home!
Welcome Home!1.29 MB
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"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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After getting settled Joe and Blondie headed down to the pool while I relaxed. I caught a giraffe right outside our balcony and got a little rest. Soon it was time to get ready for dinner and head to Disney Springs.

First thing we did was go to guest services to activate Blondie's AP. This is where the best part of my day comes in. I purchased our AP a couple months before all of the changes. Joe and I activated ours when we came down in September. I purchased Blondies before the changes also and when we got to Guest Services to activate, I was told it would be the new pass. SO WE HAVE MEMORY MAKER!!!! Yes, I purchased it last week for this trip, and YES, they refunded the full amount to me since it is now on our account!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! stars stars stars stars I thought I was going to kiss the CM helping me! Her name was Clemence and she was from France. I stood there talking to her a little bit telling her how happy I was and that she made me so happy!

After that, we stopped by La Nouba to pick up our tickets for Thursday and then headed to Raglan Road, we were about an hour early for our ADR but there was NO HOPE of getting in early. We sat outside in the perfect weather and waited. Blondie danced with the RR dancers while we were out there. And we walked over and checked out Jock Lindsay's Hangar Bar. Small but so cool!

Dinner was wonderful! Starter was the shrimp (I can't remember the name of the dish) I had the Raglan Risotto, Joe the Shepard's Pie and Blondie had the Silly Steak. We also got the Bacon Baked Beans and Au Gratin Potatoes. Mine was DELISH, Joe's was great and Blondie's was awful. Poor kiddo. My child likes her steak rare to med rare and this was burnt. We were told it would come out medium well because of the size of the steak. I should have said no right then but she wanted it. She ended up eating her fries and some of the yummy potatoes. She would not get anything different. Joe and I both were not fans of the beans. It was a great dinner other than the steak and beans and we would go again. The dancers were on point!

We headed back to AKL after dinner because Blondie was wiped out! I had to make a quick trip to the front desk when we got back. Joe tried to pay for dinner while I was in the restroom at Raglan. Apparently he didn't have charging privileges... I set Blondie's up that way but not his! So I get to the wonderful CMs working the night shift and lo and behold, I don't have charging privileges either. Apparently their system just had a major overhaul/update and credit cards "fell off" of tons of people's reservations.

Well, that is all for day one. Animal Kingdom in an hour and 20 minutes and HS tonight!!!

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Pics wouldn't attach to thread, here they are!

PreviewAttachmentSize
waiting on our ADR snappin pics
waiting on our ADR snappin pics705.81 KB
a DS tree and Blondie with a RR dancer
a DS tree and Blondie with a RR dancer886.03 KB
RR dinner
RR dinner181.46 KB
Hanger Bar
Hanger Bar814.12 KB
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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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lovely trip report. Love the pictures.

What a brilliant idea to give a present every hour. Smile

Look forward to reading more Smile

Hope you have a wonderful time

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Love all the pics!!! Have a great time!

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Allie's picture
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Great pics so far and what an amazing view from your room! Blondie is adorable, as usual wink And I like her because what kid orders their steak medium rare?! That a girl! awesome

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The pictures are great! Makes me want to leave and drive down now!Smile
Sounds like you guys are having a terrific time! Keep those pix coming!

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fab pictures so far!!! sooo jealous that you are there and I'm not!

keep it coming!

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Thanks for reading along so far everyone!

Wow...... yesterday

It started with me waking up WAAAAAAAY before my alarm went off at 5:50. gaah Just once I would like to sleep...

AK had EMH hours at 7am so we were on it. First things first, EVEREST! We rode twice in a row then Joe and Blondie rode again. I would have but since our Sept trip I have been fighting and ear infection and dizziness and it was acting up. yuck

After we headed over to the Safari. OMG!!! It was the best safari I have been on. There were animals EVERYWHERE. the Lions were even out. A huge giraffe walked right past our jeep. Along with several of the Ankole Cattle. And the babies!!! Baby warthogs, giraffe, rhinoceros, elephants and zebra. The entire jeep was pointing and oooohhhing and aaahhhing the whole time! What a treat!

Afterwards we walked the trails and headed to Starbucks for a pick me up. We were going to catch the 10am FotLK show but the coffee line was longer than Everest's laugh So we met Tarzan (he wasn't near as good as the guy I saw last time.) We went over and rode Dinosaur, which Blondie hated every single minute of. We headed back to FotLK and missed the show AGAIN so we went and rode Everest again and headed home to rest.

Blondie and Joe took nice long almost 2 hour naps and I slept about 30 minutes... I started playing Soda Crush and realized it was time to go!!!!!

We got ready and headed to HS, while the kids were sleeping we got a nice rain shower then it cleared up, well, it was back. Blondie was determined to ride ToT so we forged on. It rained on us from the truck (parked at the far end of Magic 56) until we got to the gate. It was a hard rain and we were soaked! We walked right to ToT. I hate this ride. Although I did let go once this time just for Blondie. Up next was RRC. This was a first for Blondie, she was not tall enough last trip and she loved it. So much we are going back Saturday morning!!! yay No FP so I hope the line is short. crossfingers The park does open at 7 and our first FP is at 8:15.

After all of that excitement, we headed to Mama Melrose for dinner. WOW is about all I can say. It blew Raglan out of the water which surprised me. Everything we got was great. (don't get me wrong RR was good, this was just much much better. I had the steak with mac and cheese, Joe got the saltambocca and Blondie got the ever adventurous spaghetti. We loved everything. Dessert was good, nothing special. sampler for me, PLAIN cheesecake for joe and a sundae for Blondie.

After dinner we headed towards the lights! OMG, I can't believe this is going away. It is so magical and beautiful. I may have shed a tear and this was only my 2nd year seeing them. I didn't want to leave, but my shoes and socks were STILL soaked and I was freezing. After fighting the crowds to get out we finally made it back home. I stuck the hair dryer in my shoes so they would be dry for today. Everyone else's were fine but mine are almost all that breathable material so lots of water got in. sad

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Here are some pics from yesterday too! I forgot to add to the TR that one of the floating mountains of Pandora is up at AK. It looks really cool and I can't wait to see how it all comes together!

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Good morning, hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Blondie and Joe are heading out to play golf at Oak Trail. The Sunrise 9. I am going along to walk with them. I will tell you all about tomorrow later!

Happy Black Friday!!!

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Ok, here we go for yesterday morning. I will get to the rest later, I am off to Epcot for Holidays around the world and the kids are going to the pool for a while and meeting me at MK later this evening.

We started off the morning going over to Jambo House the hit the Mara for breakfast. It was your basic Disney breakfast Mickey waffles, bacon, eggs, etc so I didn't take pics. It wasn't very busy so we got a nice table by the window and took our time before exploring the resort a little bit. I love love love the Christmas decor at these resorts and AK. By far my favorite!!!

We returned to the room for a bit to collect what we needed for the day then headed off to Epcot. We only had 2 FP. We were meeting Mickey and Soarin. We wandered around the Art of Disney, then rode Nemo and strolled around the tanks watching the feeding show. It was about time to meet Mickey so we headed over to the Character Spot and got tons of pics. After that we headed on over to Soarin, we grabbed a couple sodas and a table to wait on our fast pass time. Soarin was fabulous as usual, I can't wait for the update!

By the time it was done, it was time to go over to the Beach Club four our ADR at Beaches and Cream. I had a slaw dog, Joe had the Reuben and Blondie had a cheeseburger. Everything was really good. I don't eat a lot of ice cream so I had a little bit of Joe's No Way Jose. Blondie just had the Mickey Sundae. We strolled back to Epcot and headed for the exit. We all needed a nap before going to La Nouba.

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Loving this TR. Pictures are great. I'm so homesick for the AKL! And now I want to try Mama Melrose.

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I was raised on medium rare steaks and had no idea there was any other way to cook them. First time I had steak at a friend's house I get this piece of shoe leather, and after telling my friend how much I loved steak I couldn't stomach a single bite. So I empathize with Blondie. I hope she has had and will have much better food the rest of the trip.

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I don't want to get too far ahead of myself so just going to check in. Got to the room late last night after meeting up with Robyn & Sy and then up early for HS. Heading home now so I will finish up tomorrow!

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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It's La Nouba time!

We are big Cirque fans (we have seen La Nouba about 3 years ago) and try to go to all the ones that come here and when we are traveling. Since Blondie has been to one show and liked it we thought it would be a good evening out. We all got dressed up (the ONE night I got NO PICTURES of the 3 of us) and headed to Disney Springs. Have I mentioned how much I love the parking garage? The technology is spot on and I love looking for open spots lol. I KNOW I read somewhere that they were going to start charging to park in it? Am I making that up???

Anywho, we planned on dinner before the show but we were still full from lunch so we just grabbed the popcorn combo at the show. 2 souvenir buckets of popcorn and 2 souvenir drinks for $21.00.

The show is fantastic, it is our favorite of the ones we've seen. The clowns are hilarious, Blondie could not stop laughing at them. We now all yell PINATA randomly because of them. The tightrope walkers had my hands sweating and feeling queezy, and the Strong Man, he is my favorite! I could watch him and the acrobats on the trampolines all day! We got our tickets at a discount thru DVC and we were a couple rows up from the stage.

After we went to the food trucks to grab dinner. We got a corn dog with fries, buffalo chicken and waffles from Fantasy Fare. And shrimp and lobster mac and pork and brisket sliders from Superstar Catering to share. Everything was good. Nothing to rave about. The service at the one I went to left much to be desired. Not really sure if I would go back. The mac and cheese won as favorite.

Blondie was tired so we nixed plans to visit the Disney and Lego stores.

PreviewAttachmentSize
Epcot
Epcot1.04 MB
Beaches and Cream
Beaches and Cream840.39 KB
Beach Club tour
Beach Club tour1.15 MB
Food Trucks
Food Trucks972.25 KB
Jambo Trees
Jambo Trees1.16 MB
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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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On to Friday.

This was another EARLY morning as Joe and Blondie were playing golf this morning. I had gotten an email from Disney Golf for the Sunrise 9 package. It's 9 holes at Oak Trail, with a breakfast sandwich and drink before your round and a drink after. It is a walking course so keep that in mind and a lot of families play so the earlier the better. We were the 2nd group to tee off and didn't see anyone else until the 4th or 5th hole. As we were leaving there were 3 groups backed up on the tee box.

*I could hear the rope drop music and show from the course and it made me smile and wish I was there*

Blondie and Joe are pretty good golfers and we were done in about 2 hours. Blondie played all but 4 holes. We are slowly working her up to 9 so that she can start playing in tournaments in a couple years. The course was nice, I wouldn't say beautiful. There were some rough looking patches in the fairways and stray grass growing on a couple greens. There was a ton of wildlife. There are pictures of what you might see on the course and I checked off 6 or 7 of them including deer, armadillo and a hawk.

The sandwiches were nice and big Sausage, egg and cheese and were really good. After golf it was back to AKL for a rest before Epcot.

While heading back Blondie had a breakdown about wanting to swim so it ended up being a solo trip to Epcot for me because I wanted to check out Holidays Around the World. I was a bit disappointed. I was expecting a booth for each country but the "special holiday items" were in different locations in each pavilion so you really had to look for a couple of them. I wasn't really impressed with most of the offerings so I ended up in France first for a "Holiday" Grand Ma slush. Then on to the American pavilion where I had the BEST spiked eggnog. It was made with Buffalo Trace Bourbon and I wish I had one right now! I also got gingerbread and sugar cookies here. I also arrived in time to see Voices of Liberty's Christmas show!!!! It was awesome!!!!!!! I kind of felt like it was a wasted trip as far as the food goes and I could have saved my legs for later.

I bused back to AKL to rest for a little bit. MK is tonight and I was anticipating HUGE crowds. It honestly wasn't bad! We went in around 5, had Cheeseburger Springrolls then hopped right in line for our first FP Pirates. We rounded the corner almost to the boats and an announcement came on that they were experiencing rough waters. Some CM's came around and said it could be 2 minutes or 2 hours. We decided to stay put for 15 and decide. As we waited ALL of the lights came on and another announcement. The CM's came back and said it was shut down. We were given paper fastpasses so we went straight to Thunder Mountain.

Our next fast pass was for Ariel meeting. Blondie was super excited! I left our autograph book at the resort (bad mommy) but she got some great pics and there is always next time. While we waited on our 7DMT fp we rode the Barnstormer, Dumbo and Under the Sea. We also got treats from the Big Top. Goofy's Strawberry Glacier is DELISH!! Off to 7 Dwarfs. I really love that ride and Blondie enjoyed it. This was another ride we got stuck on.... right at the end before you come around the corner to the house. We sat on the track about 5-10 minutes. This happened to us alot.

By this time it was 8:25 we were going to try to get to Top of the World to meet up with Robyn and Sy but the crowds were thick and the kids were hungry. We ran into Pinocchio's Villiage House for pizza. We had a great view of the castle and could hear the show. As the fireworks started we were done and we got up and watched from in between the restaurant and carousel. This could be my new favorite place to watch them! They were all around us and it was loud and amazing!!!

After we hopped right in line to meet Cinderella and Rapunzel. I don't know if it is the same girls all day long but Rapunzel didn't seem to be having the BEST DAY EVER so I was a little disappointed. She was sweet enough but I wanted more. Cindy was much better. After we went to check HM times and the line was around the corner towards the Liberty Bell so we headed out. A ferry pulled up right as we got to the dock.

I did meet up with Robyn and Sy for too short of a visit when I got back to AKL. We just sat in the lobby and talked but it was really nice seeing them. It was time for bed as it was another early morning for our last day Sad

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Great trip report JMed! Sounds like crowds weren't too bad, considering the time of year. I would love to see the Osborne lights at DHS one last time in person, but I will have to be satisfied by looking at everyone's pictures instead. And, I love those peanut butter cookies! biggrin

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JanJ wrote:
Great trip report JMed! Sounds like crowds weren't too bad, considering the time of year. I would love to see the Osborne lights at DHS one last time in person, but I will have to be satisfied by looking at everyone's pictures instead. And, I love those peanut butter cookies! biggrin

I was really quite surprised by the crowds. You could really tell in some places but we rode what we wanted and more and never felt too crowded or trapped in a see of bodies.

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"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Day 5 Saturday

It is check out day, but..... Hollywood Studios opens at 7am so why not???

I woke everyone up around 5:45. We still needed to finish packing up and load the truck. We got done dressed and pulled out of AKL at 6am. We arrived and were allowed to park wherever we wanted in Television. When we walked up, there were CM's scanning bands to make sure you were staying on property. I've never seen them doing this on early morning EMH. We were 3rd in line at one of the scanners. Cue the music and we are in! We rode Rockin Roller Coaster 3 times before 8. Again, my ears started bothering me and I only rode twice. Our first FP was at 8:15 so we slowly made our way to Toy Story. Still early, we headed to Writers Stop where we shared a cheese danish and cinnamon bun. Both were yummy but the icing on the cinnamon bun seemed chewy?!? It was very strange.

We got in line for TSM and I was giving Joe the evil eye as I was going to kick his butt! AND I DID!!! He got paired with a random guy and I told him he better beat him but not me LOL I was a beaver at 149,900. Star Tours was up next. We still had about 20 minutes before our FP and the wait was 10 minutes, we rode twice before our FP. We got the exact same scenario with the new movie footage, a CM told us the new stuff is locked in for the next month with only the beginning and end changing. The third time our middle footage was the other new clips but the same beginning and end. He did say ALL NEW stuff is coming and there will then be 98 possible combinations!

We strolled a bit more, took in the Osborne Lights by day (I found so much stuff you miss at night), did a little window shopping, and stopped at every photographer we could find on the way to TOT. As you all know, I hate this ride. I do it for Blondie. I did force myself to not worry, didn't work very well, and I let it go! I didn't hold on but a couple times and I (hate to say this) LOVED IT!!!!! I still don't like the feeling of being dropped but it was awesome.

We slowly made our way back to the entrance and I say my teary goodbye to the World...

Our usual 6 hour trip took about 8 with holiday traffic so it wasn't too bad. We stopped in Jacksonville at 4 Rivers again and one stop for drinks and bathroom.

Now I sit here looking at pics, writing trip reports and dining reviews, downloading Memory Maker pics and planning our January trip to Hilton Head!

I will post highs and lows in a bit. Thanks for reading along!

__________________

"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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Nice report JMed!

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Great Report! Thanks for sharing mickey

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Great trip report! All your food pics made me hungry! You have made me even more excited for my upcoming trip clapping

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Sounds like a great whirlwind of a trip! All the food looks fantastic and I've officially added Mama Melrose to my must try list. I've always been kind of underwhelmed looking at their menu but your pictures looked so yummy!

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Great trip report! Thanks for sharing. Sounds like you all had a blast.

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Thank you all for reading! It really was a good time!

Allie wrote:
Sounds like a great whirlwind of a trip! All the food looks fantastic and I've officially added Mama Melrose to my must try list. I've always been kind of underwhelmed looking at their menu but your pictures looked so yummy!

I've seen mostly not so great reviews of MM but it was the only thing open in HS the evening we were going so I thought why not. I was pleasantly surprised. It really was good! And that steak!!! YUM

__________________

"I do not like the cone of shame."

"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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