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Old 24 Apr 17, 07:41 PM  
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Relaxing at the Grand Floridian
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Join Date: Feb 10
Over the Hill and Sailing Away March 2017 Day 18 Traveling Home Via Red lobster and Express Spa

Travel home day😞 We were up reasonably early and were aiming to leave for 12. We had make your own croissants for breakfast, they had sat in the fridge since our first shop and they were really good, just missing some syrup, we had to make do with lots of butter instead. I started on the bed stripping and towel washing etc. I had three loads washed and dry by the time we left, I just love American washers and dryers. I might have had a little grump about not having to do this in a hotel right enough but we have loved the space and freedom of the villa. We also had the usual "will everything fit" problem and almost a quick dash to Target for another suitcase but we managed eventually. It's safe to say we did not do the same amount of shopping as usual, the exchange rate had lots to do with this and we found ourselves wondering if we would be able to get the same things at home for the same price or less and doubting whether things were actually bargains. This lead to us only buying things we definitely knew we wouldn't get at home and being much more picky about our buys. Apart from Tiffanys and Pandora of course!😉

Before long we were ready to leave. Goodbye villa. The plan was to head somewhere for lunch before going to the airport.

See you again sometime villa. We hadn't really decided on a restaurant, last night Katie had said she wanted to go to Red Lobster for dinner but we ended up a Boardwalk instead. The Restuarant is right round the corner from the villa so as we are approaching she asked if we could go today instead. So in we went as the cheddar bay biscuits were calling!

So delicious, I dream about these from one holiday to the next and have the mix to make them ourselves at home, but I'm too scared to make them as I know I won't get them as good!

Katie was delighted, she loves these.

The kids both had popcorn shrimp.

Derek had a fish sandwich.

I had the shrimp tacos, these were excellent, really tasty and a great pre flight meal choice, light but filling.

So this is my last photo in Florida. Once we had finished lunch we headed to the airport. We had quite a few hours to go, the flight was after 5pm so we could have fitted in something else before getting to the airport, however if you knew my husband you would know that this would only cause lots of anxiety, clock watching and worry about every eventuality which might lead us to being late and not managing to check in/get through security/miss our flight. So we headed to the airport in plenty of time. It was a seamless affair to hand the hire car back and get ourselves and the luggage over to the check in desks. We were second in the queue and we settled down for a wait. Within half an hour the desks were open and we were obviously taken right away. British airways had some sort of technical difficulties though and we waited quite a while for their computers to start working. We had quite a wait which of course was vindicating Derek and his unnecessary rush to get here! Once the computers finally woke up our luggage was checked in and we were free. We had a wander round the shops and then I spotted Express spa. My nails we're in dire need of attention but I wasn't sure how I was going to fit it in before I returned to work in two days. Here was my answer. I just went in to enquire but they said the kids and Derek could wait in the massage chairs while I had a quick colour off and shellac back on so they were sold more than me! The kids loved it, they were in their element, Derek maybe not so much, it just opened his eyes to how much time(and money)I waste getting my nails done! It was fab to get a little pampering and the girl did a great job and I now take it all back about being at the airport early, I might plan this for our next trip!

After this we went through security and onto the monorail without a problem. The boys went for a Burger King and Katie and I had some snacks and drinks from Starbucks.

The flight was on time and we were soon on our way. We were flying to Gatwick and the flight was pretty uneventful, unfortunately none of us got any sleep, too much film watching and iPad playing, probably the time we were ready to sleep was when they put the lights on for the sandwiches to be delivered. We weren't too impressed with the food on the flight but we weren't too bothered, we had brought plenty snacks and left over crisps from the villa etc.to keep us going.

In Gatwick we had booked the No 1 lounge so we had somewhere a bit more comfortable to wait for our next flight to Edinburgh. It's the first time we have been in the one in the South Terminal. I would say there are less quiet places to relax and at this point we were all really flagging and could have been doing with a little snooze. We had some nice bacon rolls and pastries, tea and juices. It always difficult sitting there at the end of a long flight with another few hours to go before you will be home watching people going on their holidays and tucking into the free drink at 8am, I think next time we should book the lounge in the way out!

We all managed a sleep on the flight to Edinburgh!

We arrived home at 2.30pm and went to our beds for a few hours before heading to "The Grandparents" for a gorgeous roast chicken dinner, so good and a great end to our holiday.

So I didn't manage to keep up with the report live. Sorry about that, hopefully it wasn't too frustrating having to wait for the next instalment. We have been back just over a week now and just recovering from the jet lag and I am happy to have finally completed the report, thanks to everyone reading along and leaving lovely comments, it makes it easier to write knowing people are enjoying reading along.

We are very excited to have a new countdown as we are going back to Florida in July. We managed to get cheap(ish) flights back in January and in a moment of weakness we(I) decided if we were doing only Disney at Easter, we should do Universal in July as the kids, especially Katie, are Harry Potter daft (and it is my 40th year) I think Derek forgot that I persuaded him to book the Disney cruise because Universal tickets and a stay in the universal hotel was nearly the same price! We are however spending all Derek's Avios and Hilton points for free accommodation 9 nights at Hilton Double tree at Seaworld and 7 nights at Hilton Orlando where we stayed last April. I guess this should be more of a budget trip after the fabulous holiday we have just had but Ive already got my eye on a stay at RPR😉

So watch this space! I'll decide nearer the time if I do another report, I do love looking back on them and I definitely wouldn't remember as much or keep the writing up if I started when I get home so we will see!

Thanks again for reading along!


Index to my trip reports at link below, updating live
"Over the hill and sailing away March 2017"
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Harry Potter here we come!
Old 24 Apr 17, 09:13 PM  
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Old 24 Apr 17, 09:27 PM  
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I have really enjoyed reading your report & glad you enjoyed the cruise

I hope you do write another report in July as I always enjoy reading along.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old 24 Apr 17, 09:39 PM  
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I have really enjoyed reading along to your wonderful holiday thank you for taking the time to do a trippie and I will look forward to reading about your July trip

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Old 24 Apr 17, 10:06 PM  
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Excited about Disney
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The is so much for sharing your trip! I've really enjoyed reading it 😁
Quality Inn International : 1999, 2007 & 2010.
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Old 24 Apr 17, 10:23 PM  
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I've really enjoyed reading your report especially as we were then for some of the same time as you. How lovely to be going back again so soon - I hope you do manage to do another report.
Read about our trip to the new Orlando City Stadium - April 2017 here - https://www.thedibb.co.uk/forums/sho... php?t=1017992

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Old 25 Apr 17, 07:51 AM  
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Have loved following along thanks so much for taking the time!

How much were your nails aT the airport if you don't mind me asking please?

Those red lobster biscuits look delicious! I always want to go but we never seem to fit it in. X
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I can't wait to go back...
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Old 25 Apr 17, 08:41 AM  
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Great job Hazel 👍

Lucky you going back in July! I really do hope you do a trippie as I will just be home then and it will help my holiday blues. Also, mine is a Disney only trip, so a Universal trip (with a possible RPR stay) would be fab.

Thanks for sticking with doing this one - loved it ❤️

Helen xx

Here are my trip reports which I updated daily while in Florida April2015, April2016 and June2017
Here Now! First WDW Family Holiday Live Report April/May 2015
Scottishnellies 2nd live trip report - April/May 2016
Scottishnellies Sack The Kitchen Trip Live June 2017
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Old 25 Apr 17, 11:36 AM  
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Have really enjoyed following along. Thanks so much for sharing
How lovely to be going back again in July. May see you there
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Old 25 Apr 17, 04:48 PM  
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I've had a great time tagging along on your holiday. Thanks for taking the time and a effort to complete it. I really hope you do a Universal trippie in July, these reports keep me going from one Orlando holiday till the next. Welcome home.
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