PDA

View Full Version : Just back from first visit home...long.


Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 09:48 AM
We just got back from a wonderful first trip home. We actually own at BCV and SSR but stayed at BWV since that was all that was available during that time. We were very impressed and will want to stay at BWV again.

We checked in at 11 am on Jan 29th. The fella didn't say "Welcome Home" but I got lots of those from the Disboards so I didn't let it get me down. Our room was not ready, so we walked into MGM. The day was beautiful and the walk was even better. The grounds are nicely manicured and the walkway goes along the canal. It was a perfect beginning to a perfect week.

We went back at 4 and our room was ready. The cast member checking us in at that time wished me a "Welcome Home" and I was so pleased to hear it.

We were in 4094. The farthest room from the elevators down that particular hallway. It was a long haul. But soooo worth the walk. We must have had one of the best rooms on property. We just loved it. We were in a corner room (1 br, preferred view) w/ a double balcony spanning the entire length of our rooms. We looked out over the Keister Coaster Pool from behind the slide and looked out over the canal, the Swan and Dolphin, and, because we had a corner room, the window beside the TV looked back towards MGM. Amazing. The room was SPOTLESS and the design motif was lovely and calming. I secretly looked around for anything dirty or broken for fear my husband might find it first but the room was really nice. I smelled fresh paint in the hallways so they must have just painted out there. We used the stairs right by our door to go to the parks and pool when we weren't taking the stroller. It was a quick run up and down those steps and we were lounging poolside. We could communicate via our balcony so really got a lot of use out of those stairs.

The only problems: I tried to turn on the coffee table lamp and the bulb was out. I called that night and told them no hurry and to drop a lightbulb off the next day... they brought it up in minutes. We also noticed the lock on the balcony door was falling off and had to really work w/ it to lock or unlock it. And the spray nozzle plate for the kitchen sink became unglued and would come off when you used the nozzle. Didn't upset either of us and we just dealt w/ those while we vacationing, but I mentioned it to the front desk at our departure so they could fix those 2 items before the next guests arrived. It was normal wear and tear and nothing housekeeping would see unless they were told about those issues. It didn't bother us a bit.

The room service was fabulous and one of our favorite experiences. My husband and I got to eat from Spoodles and Flying Fish a couple nights while the kids slept and the service and food were both excellent. The first night I tried to get take out from the YS (one of my favorites) because the kids had traveled that day and I didn't feel like pushing it by taking them into the restaurant. We rented a surrey (lots of fun) and headed over there to order the food. They wouldn't take my order and said they don't do carryout. They assured me that we could bring the kiddies in that evening, but we opted not to because we didn't need any more stress. Hence we ordered inroom dining and the server set up our entrees and drinks and we were set. That was one of the best meals I ever had.

The only complaint I have is the bus system. I read about it but never found the transportation at Disney to be an issue for me. During the value season, the bus system is still horrible. We usually caught the bus quickly (w/in 15 min), but the buses stopped at the Swan, the Dolphin, the Yacht Club, the Beach Club, and then your destination. All those stops for 1 and 2 people usually took an addt'l 45 min. We thought that at least coming back will be better... but the bus stops at all those places, and then the BW is last again. I was hoping we'd be first on the route either coming or going, but being last always doesn't seem to be fair. So we figured we'd get off at the Swan and walk the 2 min to cut off 30 min of our bus trip. We usually walked to MGM and EPCOT and started walking to EPCOT for the monorail to MK rather than taking the bus. It shaved off a good 30 min off of our travels. The AK was the only time we HAD to take the bus.

Other than the disappointment in buses, we had a marvelous time. A little drizzly at the beginning of the week, but nothing we and our stroller couldn't handle. In fact we had EPCOT to ourselves one drizzly warm evening, the kids fell asleep in the stroller, and my DH and I walked hand in hand past the countries back to our room. It was a perfect evening.

We are so absolutely thrilled that we purchased the DVC in Oct of 03. After lounging around at the BW pool, watching our little one play in the water, and going back for a nap, before dinner, I can't imagine not having my Disney Home. I loved staying in Disney concierge, but after staying in a villa, there is no going back. I never wanted to stay in a homey place because I loved the fine accomodations of a deluxe. But the villas aren't a step down from the deluxes... they are just as nice as the deluxe rooms, only bigger and w/ the conveniences of being at home. It was so nice to wash the baby's clothes and warm towels. It was so nice to cook my picky 2 yr old some dinner and then take him to a dinner show where he wouldn't eat, but would watch the show while we ate.

And I must say that BWV are my favorite although I haven't stayed anywhere else and can't compare. But the location is fabulous, the dining selections are superb, the resort is lovely, 2 parks are a delightful stroll away, and it seems to be right in the middle of all the action. When you have to get back for naps every day, every minute counts, and you need to get to your destinations fast. The BWV offer that. I will definitely try to stay there again, but look forward to seeing the differences in what the other resorts offer as well.

All in all, our first experience w/ DVC was amazing. My DH had a smile on his face the whole time (except when our 2 yr old acted up and we had to deal w/ his challenging personality) and only called work a few times (which is way below his normal amount). We have no regrets and only wonder why we didn't do this sooner. We loved the room so much and enjoyed our trip. We even thought of staying an extra day or so due to the ice storms hitting the northeast. We didn't want to get stuck in Pitts w/ 2 small children and no room. I checked w/ Disney and the CM told me we could keep the room and that they would do whatever they could to help out family. Wow! We ended up coming home as originally planned, but that was a big deal for my DH to suggest staying longer. That's never happened before. And I believe it might have been the first time we weren't looking forward to getting home. Although he enjoys his vacations, my DH always looks forward to getting home to his own bed and surroundings. Not this time. We were both bummed about leaving WDW and our only consolation was that we will be back next year. Normally we must wait a couple years before we go back. Now w/ DVC, we can go every year.

If anyone is on the fence about DVC, I hope this pushes you over to the "yes" side. It is sooo worth every penny, our room was immaculate, and the service was superb. Everyone had a smile on their face and bent over backwards for us. Maybe I was looking thru DVC glasses, but it seemed even more so than past years. And taking a 2 yr old to WDW is very challenging. The DVC made it attainable w/ the amenities and roominess. I am sure the vacation would not have been as enjoyable w/o the villas. The DVC resort certainly made it easier.

I am sad to be back home typing this.... but I am so glad that we'll be visiting WDW every year for the next 50 yrs. Knowing this makes it easier to get thru the year until we visit again. No regrets w/ our purchase!!!

If I can answer any questions... just let me know. We ate at several character breakfasts and dinner shows and I'd be happy to let you know how much we liked them. Thanks for reading!

CarolMN
02-11-2004, 09:56 AM
WOW! What a fabulous trip report. Thanks so much for taking the time to type/post all of that.

Hope it helped you deal with your "homesickeness!". It sure helped me - I have to wait until December for our next trip home.

So glad you had a good time - the BWv is our home and we love it, too!

floridafam
02-11-2004, 09:56 AM
Wonderful report!!!

SleepyatDVC
02-11-2004, 10:01 AM
Double WOW!!!

I loved your trip report. Thanks so much for taking the time to post it.

It reminds me of all the reasons why I love my DVC home so much. Now, I'm so homesick too!!!

Sniff, sniff,... I don't have a next trip planned yet, but you've inspired me to just pick a date and get some reservations!

pumpkinboy
02-11-2004, 10:18 AM
Wow, thx for the detailed, and very well written (BTW) account. Interesting that your redhead seems to have the stereotypical redhead personality ("challenging personality" as you put it). Being an easygoing redhead myself and having two redheaded children, I have found that some folks expect "challenging" from a redheaded child (eg the naughty boy who teases Dumbo). In our case, the 6 yr old DS more easygoing like his daddy, while the 4 yr old DD is still full of beans and very precocious. I must say, at 2 she was pretty challenging too (tho always a lovely child as I am sure your's is), and I am sure the excitement of being at WDW exacerbated that. I have theorized that being 2 and knowing what you want to do without being physically or developmentally prepared to actually do it must be really frustrating. We still see some of that at 4 of course, but not quite so much as at 2.

Glad you had a great time. We own at BWV but have not been yet, so I eagerly drank in your description. :wave2:

keenercam
02-11-2004, 10:51 AM
Thanks for posting. What an awesome trip report! I have to tell you -- you now have me tempted to stay at BW. BCV is our "home" and we have stayed there and VWL. We will stay at OKW in April. DH has said he isn't too tempted to stay at BW because he thinks it is very similar to BCV without SAB, but it sounds like there is a whole different feel to it with the restaurants and boardwalk and the pool there. I'll have to persuade him to give it a try.
Thanks again. And I am sooooo glad you had such an awesome trip home!

Granny
02-11-2004, 11:00 AM
Brigitte...I know you had a ton of questions, and maybe even a few concerns before you took this trip. I'm very happy to hear that your first DVC experience was as wonderful as you hoped it would be.

I agree that BWV is a great DVC resort. It was not our original choice, as we bought into VWL, which we enjoy immensely. But after "straying" to BWV one vacation, we bought a BWV resale so we could alternate locations for our WDW trips.

Just a warning, in case you intend to "sample" other DVC resorts! :p


And as for this....

We have no regrets and only wonder why we didn't do this sooner.
.....if only I had a dollar for every time that's been posted on these boards from DVC owners.....well, I'd be able to buy a bunch more points!!! :p

Thanks for posting your thoughts in such a great report!

LIFERBABE
02-11-2004, 11:01 AM
I am so glad you all enjoyed your first DVC vacation. I am looking forward to ours. My DH is normally ready to go home after a week also so that does say alot!

Time for a new countdown!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 11:02 AM
CarolMN, floridafam, and SleepyatDVC: Thank you so much for your kind words. I am so glad the DVC exceeded my expectations and I truly did have a great time. I wanted everyone at the Disboards to know how grateful we are to be able to take part in the DVC and all that it provides. DVC proved itself to be a wonderful asset. Thanks for posting me and making me feel so special.

Pumpkinboy: I forgot about the fiery redhead personality comment I made a while back... LOL!!! You should see some of the photos taken of him on the trip.... his red REALLY came out in the pictures... maybe from his personality shining thru. He hated being dragged around the parks. We tried to make him go from point A to point B too many times to see "Rolie Polie" or "Buzzy".... and being 2, he was happy to just swim in the pool or play w/ the fun mirrors on the BW, or roll around in the grass near France at EPCOT. My DH took him on the speed boats at the Contemporary and said Tristan barely noticed he was in the boat.... but loved playing w/ the line used to tie up the boat at the docks. So we finally got smart about it and realized we didn't need to get him to and plop him on all the rides. It was more enjoyable just watching him wrestling on the lawn w/ his Daddy. I would sit on the bench w/ baby girl, and the boys would play. So by the end of the trip, the tantrums were gone and he was as good as gold. We would take him home for a nap and go back out to dinner and he did great. If anyone heard screams during the beginning of our trip though, I am sure that was us. Sorry to all you out there who were bothered. He wanted to go left, we right.... it was a disaster. But that is what was so great about DVC..... We knew we'd be back soon, so why push it and see everything?! There was no need. And so we enjoyed the resort itself, rather than using it just for sleep. We spent several days at the pool and it was so much fun and something we rarely do. And then he was tired and quiet for our dinners. And the parks were too overwhelming for him. For a kid who rides rollercoasters around here all the time, he certainly did get shy at WDW. He was a bit afraid of the Barnstormer too. Just too much and couldn't handle it w/ all of the characters, traveling, and animatronics. So that is why DVC made it so special for us. It made us kick back and relax and go at his pace and it became more enjoyable for all us. Thanks for writing pumpkinboy, it's nice to know others have gone thru a few of the difficulties we have. Tristan can go to fancy restaurants and is so good up here in PA. We almost didn't know how to handle him down there because his tantrums were a first for us. By the end of our trip, we were pros. That is another reason why we thought we would like to stay longer.... we were getting better at the parenting. But next time, we'll be more prepared hopefully. But it is amazing how WDW can change a child. Whoa! And the BWV are awesome!!! Definitely check them out sometime!! So glad to hear from you!

tinkgrl
02-11-2004, 11:28 AM
Hi,

Glad you enjoyed your trip!!!

Allison an associate

jmatias
02-11-2004, 11:33 AM
Thanks Brigitte for the report. We are really looking into DVC and your report only furthered my desire :p

We were having difficulty deciding which resort was best for us but the way you described BWV makes it sound perfect for our family.

In your report you mentioned the "trials" of traveling with your 2 year old. How was it with your baby? We will be going to WDW this June and our baby girl will be 6 months. This will be our first time traveling with a baby so young.

I'm glad you had such a wonderful time!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 11:39 AM
keenercam: We really did enjoy BWV. We mosied on down to SAB to see if we could slip into the pool considering it is value season and thought they might not care too much, but we got stopped at the entrance. No way to sneak by them. So we did not get to try SAB this time, even w/ a little bit of schmoozing w/ the CM saying we "bought" at BCV but just weren't staying there this time. He was sweet and apologetic but didn't budge. My son cried as we pulled him away from the SAB and headed back over to BWV. Oh well. I would try it if I were you. It was a lovely resort and really worth visiting once. As long as your kids won't be disappointed about not being able to use SAB. That could be a real bummer for them. Thanks for posting me.

Granny: It was so nice to hear from you! I too feel like I already want to add on to our points, although we certainly don't need anymore. I loved the BWV and would love to stay there occasionally and thought, "Wouldn't it be nice to have this as our home resort?" Then I woke up and realized I could stay there w/ my points from SSR and BCV. But it does get you, doesn't it?! And about that comment... I too heard so many say it and now I am one of them. I am truly grateful that we FINALLY took the plunge and we have all these wonderful vacations ahead of us. I can't wait to try them all out, but I have to try not to get so attached that I am disappointed at not owning at all of them. My husband would kill me if I so much as mentioned wanting to buy into another resort. Ha ha. I even yelled to a couple of families standing by the DVC podiums contemplating a purchase to "Do it!! We purchased in Oct and LOVE it!" I thought maybe I could sway them a bit so they too didn't have the regret of not buying sooner. Hopefully I didn't just embarass myself w/ my enthusiasm. Thanks for writing!

Liferbabe: Thank you for posting your sweet thoughts! I will sprinkle pixie dust in your direction for a wonderful trip. And I forgot to mention..... NO BUGS! My husband noticed it halfway thru our trip. NONE, NADA, NIL... What's up w/ that? Aren't there always bugs in FLA? Disney must be doing a great job w/ pest control. Although I did get pooped on twice by those pesky seagulls. They drove me crazy. And they pooped on my son's raincoat in the stroller. So it was really nice having the DVC washers so I could take care of that little problem. I wish there was something Disney could do about those. Will it be your first trip home? Either way I hope it's wonderful! Thanks again.

Maistre Gracey
02-11-2004, 11:45 AM
Thanx for the superb report! I am truly glad that DVC made a great first impression! :cool:

MG

dianeschlicht
02-11-2004, 11:57 AM
What a great report! Glad you had such a wonderful first experience! Also glad DVC showed you how to both relaxe AND have a great trip!:earsgirl:

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 11:57 AM
Thanks so much for posting me tinkgrl! I always love to hear from you and appreciate all of your advice.

jmatias: Thank you too for contacting me. Baby girl was a real treat in WDW. Smiled all the time unless she was eating or sleeping. She gets so little attention at home because of having an older brother, that she bloomed in Disney w/ all the attention from Mommy and Daddy and the characters and CM's. She ate about every 3 hours throughout the day and slept during shows and rides. Minnie fed her a bottle and Chip rocked her to sleep and Goofy played w/ her toes. She loved EVERY minute. I missed her ultrasaucer that she uses for exercise, but we placed her on a blanket on the floor by the TV and she rolled around and watched the goings on. So she was extremely easy for us.

We took our son when he was 8 mos old and he slept thru every dinner like clockwork and slept through Cirque and did marvelously well. He crawled the week we got home so he was immobile at the time. I think babies are great at WDW. They love all the visual stimulation and traveling and do very well. It's when they begin to move and gain independence that I noticed the challenges begin. You know they want to see Rolie Polie, but traveling from one point to another is tough. He wanted to walk, but kids at 2 don't walk in a straight line, they meander and investigate and act out Playhouse Disney. And everything is "No". Do you want to eat... "NO NO", Do you want to swim... "NO NO", Do you want to stay here... "NO NO". Then he comes to me w/ his life preserver and says, "Swim." They just want to come up w/ the idea themselves. But once you stop dragging them by their toes to the next destination and let them "play" on the swing sets, they make friends and enjoy themselves. At the Biergarten, he grabbed a little girl by the hands and danced w/ her on the dance floor. So we did have great moments. We just had to let them happen rather than drag him kicking and screaming.

And I checked out the baby stations inside the parks and they are wonderful. They disinfect the changing tables the second you are done w/ them, they sell formula and diapers and have rocking chairs and potties for kids. They are quiet and helpful when nursing or when you just need to get away from the hustle and bustle of the parks. Definitely try out those. I am sure this next trip will be very enjoyable w/ your infant. Just a little prior planning and you and your child will have a great time!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 12:05 PM
Maistre Gracey: It certainly did!!! I am truly impressed and I can't wait til next year. I didn't get to visit the Adventurer's Club this time though. :( I thought when I stay at SSR next year, I'll be able to visit the club. Maybe when DH is babysitting... ha ha. Thanks for posting me. I always love reading your posts! I learn so much! Kungaloosh!!!

dianeschlicht: Can you believe that? I can actually relax AND have a good time in WDW. And that is a stretch for me to relax while on vacation. It killed me in past years when DH needed a nap. I remember going into the parks by myself because I couldn't stand to sit. This time was the exception. I actually caught 1 or 2 naps myself and only planned 5 dinners out of the 8 nights........ crazy, I know! I am a changed woman!!! Thanks for saying "Hi"! You have always been so helpful w/ my questions and I was hoping you would give me your 2 cents! I so appreciate your thoughts!

wilderness01
02-11-2004, 12:15 PM
Thanks for your wonderful trip report. We were leaving the BWV the day after you arrived. We so enjoyed our stay at this resort as well and had a wonderful, CLEAN room. It was a real treat. Glad you had such a nice time.:D

bobbiwoz
02-11-2004, 12:47 PM
With all of the excitement today about the stock market and Disney, I was so happy that I took the time to read your report and the wonderful comments everyone made. There certainly are lots friends on these boards who are eager for tidbits of home, especially wonderful reports like yours.

I liked the spin you put on the long hallway by using the stairs and balcony. Oh, I can't wait to go home too!

Bobbi:D

Simba's Mom
02-11-2004, 01:11 PM
Did they let you change the light bulb? I had a really funny experience in December at BCV. I also had a light burnt out and called for them to just drop off a light bulb ("No hurry. Tomorrow's OK"-this was at 9:30 pm) Well, they were very nicely insistent that Engineering would be up right away to change it, "We don't like our guests to have to change their own light bulbs!" Sure enough, 15 minutes later, here comes the Engineer with the light bulb that, of course, HE changed. I wondered if it was because I was a woman alone and they didn't trust me to have the "advanced knowledge" required to change a light bulb. At least the light bulb was promptly changed!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 01:23 PM
wilderness01: Thanks for writing me! And I am so glad you had the same experience as we did. After reading some of the posts over the past months, I too thought we might have an unclean room or something. But the housekeeping was topnotch. I met them a few times and they were always friendly, helpful, and willing to bend over backwards for us. And I liked the privacy as well. We picked up after ourselves and didn't have to worry about being there when they stopped by to clean. I liked having the place to ourselves, unless we requested their presence. And when we did, they were at our doorstep lickety split.

bobbiwoz: I so enjoyed reading your post. I couldn't wait to hear from you. I too am worried about the merger news. Comcast has been a horrible monopoloy in our area and I can't imagine them running the "show" at Disney. They have a horrible record w/ customer service in my opinion. But I am going to try to be optimistic and hope whatever happens is right for Disney and all of us in the long run. It made me feel better to hear the CEO of Comcast has experience w/ Disney. And as far as the hallway and stairs....there is always a bright side. Although we had a lonnnnnng hallway, we made the best of it by enjoying our tremendous views and fireworks over MGM, and by using our stairs to quickly dart over to MGM, the pool, and the BW. It just takes a day or 2 to figure out all of those gems and where to find them. I will be spreading pixie dust for a wonderful trip home for you. I am sure it will be better than you can imagine. Pictures don't do it justice and it's so hard to understand just how great it can be w/o first experiencing it. It's totally unlike all of my previous trips and so much better. I loved hearing from you Bobbiwoz! Thanks for keeping in touch w/ me.

jmatias
02-11-2004, 01:30 PM
Brigitte, thanks again for all the great info. I'm sure we will have a great time at WDW...how can you not :hyper:

Our June trip will be the second for our DS8 and DS6 and first for DD6 months. I'm really hoping to convince DH to buy into DVC and I"ll make sure he reads your post tonight.

Did you go to the Cape May character breakfast? We are planning on doing it this trip and would love to hear any comments.

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 01:32 PM
Simba's Mom: That is so funny! We also called around 10 pm and said tomorrow is more than fine. In fact we didn't want them to come at 10 pm due to the kids sleeping and all. They showed up in 15 min like you said and hesitated at the door when my husband answered and said he could change it. They asked if he was sure it was the bulb and not the switch and he said it was definitely the bulb. They said they would change it and he insisted he could and they finally shuffled sideways past the door w/ funny looks on their faces like they were not following protocol. It was funny. I figured that is what was happening. And there were 2 men. LOL! By the way, we were able to fix it w/ no problem. Thanks for posting!

PamOKW
02-11-2004, 01:45 PM
I agree that your wonderful report was especially nice to read on a day filled with "Comcast mania"! Thanks for taking the time to post in detail and to answer in detail. I am so happy that your first trip "home" was a wonderful one.

DVCindy
02-11-2004, 01:50 PM
Glad to hear you had such a wonderful first trip !!

We were at BWV Jan 27 - Feb1 and had a great time, too !

On our June 2003 trip, we had room 5094 ... just above yours. I have to agree with you ... it's a fantastic room !!! I would love to get that end room again sometime. My dd's loved being able to watch all the fun at the Luna Park slide !!

Cindy

palmtreegirl
02-11-2004, 01:52 PM
Welcome back, happy to hear you had a good trip!!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 01:57 PM
jmatias: I'm glad I was able to answer some of your questions. I respect you for trying it w/ 3 kids. We are wondering how we are going to do it next year w/ to kids on the move. One was difficult enough. I am hoping our little girl is a little less head strong and energetic when she is little. Then maybe they will switch in their early teens and she will be difficult, but he will be easy. At least then we have a chance. I would definitely say we would have had a much more difficult time w/o the amenities of the DVC. Knowing we had a huge place for naps and to regroup and eat snacks really made the difference. With a young family like your own, DVC seems to be the perfect choice.

We went to Cape May Cafe for the character breakfast on our last day. By this time my son was enjoying the characters and not turning his head. The hostess was sooo nice to us and we were the last ones seated. The food was delish and the ambience was darling. Since we were the last ones there, they gave us extra special attention. Chip and Goofy colored w/ Tristan, Chip rocked Caroline, Chip and Dale teased each other, Goofy spent a lot of time w/ the baby. And Goofy's antics were funny.... he laid on the floor for someone else's pictures and posed. We really enjoyed our breakfast there. It was unhurried and friendly. They even left the food out for us w/o making us feel guilty for keeping them there past hours. We had already put our bags in storage and were able to regroup and relax before hitting the parks on the last day. No pressure from the CM's to hurry at all. I would definitely eat here esp. if you are staying at a resort nearby. It is so convenient and enjoyable.

Lexxiefern
02-11-2004, 01:58 PM
What a great report!! I am so glad you enjoyed BWV - they are our favorite ::yes:: Sounds like a wonderful room you had too. I have loved all of the rooms I have had so far at BWV. Can't wait for September to come now - you made me homesick for my home away from home!!

BWVDee
02-11-2004, 02:12 PM
I am so glad to hear that your trip was wonderful. BWV is our home resort and we absolutely love it. Your great trip report made me home sick and I just got back 9 days ago!! LOL!!
It has been many years since my kids were young toddlers and babies but we also used to just go with the flow and let the kids set the pace during our WDW vacations. It made life much easier and more enjoyable. Of course, it took us awhile to figure this strategy out but once we did, we were fine. I will never forget on the first day of our first WDW trip with a 11 month old and a
2 1/2 yr old, we were standing in a very, very long line for Dumbo--it was ungodly hot, the kids were cranky & tired and we (Mom and Dad) were arguing! All of a sudden we both looked at each other and said "this is NOT the way it is supposed to be!". We left MK returned to our WDW resort, put the kids down for a nap and sat out on the balcony with a nice adult beverage and finally started to enjoy our WDW trip. After that day we always went with the kid's schedule and pace and had much happier and pixie dust filled trips. And you know what? What we missed out on riding/doing etc., due to our young children and their schedules--we eventually had time for during many other WDW trips over the years.
Thanks for posting such a nice report. ::MickeyMo

LucyLou&BobWho
02-11-2004, 02:18 PM
What a great trip!!! Now I am just so jealous!!! I just can't wait. I am so glad you enjoyed it so much. We haven't even gone on our first trip yet, but already my husband is talking about buying some addl. points at the BWV, this post just reinforces that I think we'll have to do it:p

thanks for the great report!!

MiaSRN62
02-11-2004, 02:45 PM
Brigitte,
Thanks for the colorful report. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. Your view from you BWV room must have been wonderful. I'm going to have to give BWV a second chance and hope for a view like this instead of the one I got last summer---I agree, it would make the walk worth it :teeth:
Thanks again for reporting in. I'm sure your terrific experiences on this trip will help to tide you over until next year :goodvibes

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 03:04 PM
PamOKW: And thank you PamOKW for reading and responding to my post. You have been so helpful over the past few months w/ some of my decisions and I really appreciate you taking the time to check in on me to see how I am doing. Always glad to hear from you.

DVCindy: Nice to meet ya Cindy! Those rooms are truly fabulous! As long as you can handle the walk. We just figured we were walking off all those calories from dinner. Glad to hear you had a great time too! It's always nice to share the happy experiences w/ others.

Palmtreegirl: Thanks for your kind remarks. It was so nice to hear from you!

Lexxiefern: I too love the BWV now. It may very well be my favorite, but I will have to check out all the others before I can make that decision.... but so far, it's my favorite. My room was so great that I can't imagine any of the other rooms being nearly as good. So you make me feel better knowing that I didn't get the very best and it's all downhill from here. Ha Ha. It sounds like a lot of the BW rooms are great. You always have great suggestions and ideas and I am so happy I heard from you again. I hope your trip in Sept is magical!

BWVDee: Your story really hit the mark for me. That is exactly what we had gone through. I always thought that the kids would just have to tag along and keep up and that they had no say when it comes to our vacation. But then the hubby and I had our long talk about our plans just not working and that even 4 or 5 rides a day was TOO much for him. We were all miserable, smiling, but miserable. It was funny....the parent not holding Tristan in a football hold was the parent who was strolling the quiet one and pretending not to know the screaming child and parent carrying the child. We got a kick out of playing, "I don't belong to them." I enjoyed reading your post and finding out were are not the only parents who got a wake up call in front of Dumbo. Thanks for your funny story!

LucyLou&BobWho: If I hadn't already added on, I would do so at the BWV. Definitely go for it if you can. It is the BEST investment we ever made because it was for us. I just hope I have many years of staying at the BWV before there are so many of us and no room there anymore for my family. It is a wonderful wonderful resort. Good luck at getting those extra points! I'll be cheering you on from this end!

Disney Enthusiast
02-11-2004, 03:11 PM
Thanks for posting your thoughts MiaSRN62! I really enjoyed reading your comments. Sorry to hear you didn't get a great location last time. If you can, give BWV a 2nd chance! I hope your next experience will make up for your last one. Thanks for contacting me!

MJTinNH
02-11-2004, 07:16 PM
I was just thinking to myself last night that you might be posting your trip report soon! I am so happy that you and your family had a great trip. The report on your room really makes me look foward to my 1st trip "Home" in May. The long walk didn't even seem so bad because of your easy access to the stairway.

I also enjoyed your description of the weather. Any little suggestion of weather other than cold and dreary is welcome news.:sunny:

I do have a question. Did you end up going to a grocery store or did you try the fax list on the Member site for your supplies?

Thank you for posting your report, it did help to spread a little "Disney" back into my day!:)

Disney Enthusiast
02-12-2004, 07:48 AM
It was so nice of you to keep me in your thoughts and to check up on me on the boards MJTinNH! Thank you.

About the weather.... I packed for everything as I am sure one must in January. But we essentially wore shorts and T's every single day. We had to wear our water resistant pullovers one day, but that didn't slow us down any. They temperature was warm and we had turkey and mashed potoatoes at the LTT at the MK which warmed us up nicely. Spectro was cancelled that night though. After dinner, the roads were wet, but no precipitation and the walk to the monorail and thru EPCOT was very nice. Other than that, breezy, warm (65 to 75 degrees), and mostly sunny every day. That weather is perfect for us Northeasters, but it was comical down there. The CM's were all wearing ski type parkas and long pants. They were all bundled up in 60 degree temps. That to us is a most perfect day! By the end of our stay, the temps rose to the mid to upper 80's and it was beginning to get really warm. Still really nice, but I wouldn't want to wait in lines w/ 2 babies in that heat. I remember my DH and I talking about it being a "scorcher" today. It was a day where one could burn quickly. So we hung out by the pool the last few days and used lots of Coppertone. I thought it would be much colder than it was. Next time I'll probably only bring one sweatshirt and wash it if I must to save room in the suit case. In May, you should have really nice weather.

The food situation was so funny. My DH decided not to rent a car, and decided I should send a FAX rather than go w/ FL Tours. I went to send the FAX out the day before we left for WDW and noticed they needed 48 or 72 hrs notice.... uh oh! So I called the General Store and asked them if they had specific items. If the cheese is a different color, my son won't eat it. They seemed to have all of the essentials important to our family. So Mears picked us up at the airport (I must say they did a marvelous job and I might just do Mears all the time they were that good), dropped us off at the resort. We went into MGM, checked in at 4, took naps, and then went out on the town that evening. We had a lovely surrey bike ride around the BW, then after we took the bike back, we strolled into the General Store and picked up the items we needed.... milk, bread, eggs, cheese, etc. and walked upstairs w/ our groceries.

Now granted, we eat out a lot when on vacation and don't need much. So if you need to bake cakes and cook dinners every night, this is not the way to go..... but for our family, this was the ticket and we will do it this way every time. I had the foods I needed to feed my 2 yr old, and Mommy and Daddy still ate out every night. I can't imagine spending my time in a grocery store while on vacation. I was stressing out about having a car drop us off and waiting for us to shop while 2 babies were in the car w/ the other parent? It seemed to be too difficult. I thought the General Store was exactly what we needed. And we noticed no major jump in cost. It's worth it to us to spend the extra few cents to have the convenience of a store right there. Every other night we "dropped" by the store and bought wine coolers (haven't had those in years) or beer and postcards. I loved it. I might use the FAX sheet next time if I am staying across the water at the BCV, but it's really nice walking in there and picking out what you want. So if you are thinking about cooking every night, then you prob. still want to get to a grocery store. If you need breakfast items and some frozen dinners, coffee, and milk, then just FAX or drop by the General Store and let others cook for you and serve you. Hope this helps!!!

I'll be looking forward to your post in May about your trip. I'm sure you will have a wonderful time and your report will give ME a bit of Disney Magic to get me through until we go again next Dec or Jan. Thanks again for being interested!

scotth1042
02-12-2004, 08:34 AM
Great report!

Disney Enthusiast
02-12-2004, 09:01 AM
Glad you dropped by scotth1042!

MinnesotaChill
02-12-2004, 12:41 PM
Brigitte -
Glad you had such a great time! We did too, but we left right as you were getting there. We used our sweatshirts almost every day! The day we left it was supposed to get up to 80 and we were so wishing we'd had one more day! I looked for you but we were in MK & MGM the last day we were there, and never saw anyone in the halls!

I'm like you. I want to go back NOW!!

gopherit
02-12-2004, 03:24 PM
Hi! Read your wonderful post earlier but am only now just getting the chance to comment! And good thing for me, too -- b/c you added lots of extra commments since the OP! More details!!

As for the lightbulb -- I'd be willing to bet it's not a gender thing, but more likely a mandated safety issue. If, for example, it HAD been the switch, and your dh went to unscrew what he thought was a dead bulb, and suddenly the shorted wire came to life mid-bulb removal -- well, most folks would say (after they got over the shock!) silly me, I had no idea, and then call for maintenance back-up. But there are those who would say, bad bad Disney... why, I could have been "kilt" or worse... where's my lawyer. You get the idea. I'd be willing to bet they are told to perform any and ALL maintenance tasks -- no matter how minor, no matter whether it's a woman or a man or Bob Vila (not to imply that Bob Vila is gender alternate, but you get the idea!)

ANYWAY -- I am SOOOOOOO glad to hear such a positive report on BWV! It's our "home" since we bought back in '99, but we have yet to stay there, oddly enough! This summer we will have me, dh, and our 3 (ds ages 9 and 8, then dd age 4) and bring SIL/BIL and their 2 sons with us (one age 4, one 8 mos). We decided to try BWV -- based on your post, I'm so glad and SO EXCITED!! We are going whole-hog resort-wise this trip... one night at BCV (on cash, courtesy of BIL/SIL, so we can all try out SAB!) Then we move over to BWV for 8 nights... then BIL/SIL leave ( :( ) and our family will get a surprise (we aren't telling our kids about this part) -- 4 more days over at SSR! We've never switched resorts before -- should be interesting! We're planning on not getting groceries until we move to BWV, so we'll do the Cape May b'fast over at BCV, maybe ESPN for lunch. I'll keep the Gen'l store in mind, although the call-ahead WeShop grocery deal sounded really good. I'd gladly pay someone $20 to grocery shop for me, especially if it meant an extra 2 hrs doing something ELSE, like sipping a drink by SAB or LP! :) We don't dine in every night, but as your little ones grow a bit, you'll find it's REALLY nice to dine in sometimes! (Crock pots help!) When our kids came back from TL one time, they could barely move. How wonderful it was for them to come back to the villa and TOTALLY unwind! We always do a character b'fast or two, but by and large, we eat b'fast in the villa. The kids eat better in the villa -- it's just too exciting out in the "World" to eat when you're a kid! So we eat out one night, in the next. Same thing with park days (in park one day, not in parks the next). It just keeps everything more relaaaaaaxed (which as you found was vital to true vacation enjoyment for all!)

But back to your report! Wow -- sounds great! I'd like to hear more, specifically -- How was Spoodles? What other dining around BW did you try? (ESPN? Cape May dinner buffet? Beaches or Dolphin fountain?) And how much was the surrey rental (and were they as hard to move as folks say?) How was the cleanliness of Luna Park (when we pool-hopped there last trip, the tiles REALLY needed a SCRUB! Ewwww...) What other character meals did you do? (Did you make a restaurant report?)

I'm sure I'll think of more, but this post/novel is long enough!
Thanks again!

bub
02-12-2004, 03:51 PM
Enthusiast - We learned a hard lesson with a 2-year-old child as well, and you are absolutely right to plan your day around their energy level. We took my daughter all through Epcot, and she seemed to be happy and loving all of it. When it was time to leave (at 3 p.m. - can't believe we didn't take that midday break) I went to help her onto a bus, and she wanted to climb on "all by herself." She had a complete meltdown the entire way back to OKW, hitting me and screaming "I hate you mommy!" (My husband was in the back of the bus with my better-behaved 4-year-old son.) We got off at the first stop at OKW (feeling a bit embarassed, to say the least) and then had to walk to our room back by Turtle Pond. That would have been okay if it wasn't August!

Anyway, we sure learned our lesson, and our trips since then have been far more mellow and enjoyable. My daughter is now 10, and does not remember any of this. She would never ride anything very challenging (even Dumbo is too high for her) but last October we got her onto Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and RnRC - what a shock, she loved them all. Guess you just have to wait for those developmental stages to pass. She still is really scared of costumed characters (even Piglet, for gosh sakes!) but we do okay with this, too - no need to wait in lines for autographs for this family! My kids are now very into the water parks - Disney is great for having things to do no matter what your stage or interest. As your kids grow, your activities will change a lot, keeping your vacations fun.

Thanks for your great report. We love BWV too and will be there in August!

Nick@ VB+OKW
02-12-2004, 04:06 PM
Originally posted by Disney Enthusiast
My DH had a smile on his face the whole time !

http://users.pandora.be/eforum/emoticons4u/happy/1074.gif

Brigitte
Excellent report ::yes:: .................between your posts and Dr. Tomorrow's posts, it makes for excellent reading.http://users.pandora.be/eforum/emoticons4u/fingers/fing11.gif

K9pal
02-13-2004, 10:59 AM
Thanks so much for taking the time to post such a wonderful detailed report! It was very reassuring to me as a brand new DVC owner (SSR). We are planning our first trip home in September, spending 2 nights at SSR and 5 at BWV (hopefully). I've been wondering in the back of my mind if we did the right thing, since we love the deluxes. But after reading your report I feel much better.
As far as BWV being your favorite resort, I think anytime you have such a magical vacation, wherever you stay becomes your favorite. We had the same experience last year at the BC - PERFECT vacation. So it's our favorite, at least until September rolls around! :D

Disney Enthusiast
02-13-2004, 11:44 AM
MinnesotaChill: I looked for you and I am so sorry we didn't catch up w/ each other! It was amazing how I saw people only a few times in the halls as well. And the halls were usually spotless. Only once did I notice someone putting their garbage out and so I moved it to the garbage room for them to clean up a bit. I was thinking of one of the past threads I read on garbage in the hallways. The funny thing I noticed was another family on the bus from Minnesota...... my ears perked up and I listened for details thinking it might be you. But they had 2 kids, a 16 mo old boy and a 4 or 5 year old girl, and the little girl's name was not the same as your little girl's. They were a really nice family and got off at the BW. Then I met them again in the elevator going or coming from the villas. I kept my eyes and ears tuned for you though, esp at the pool where I thought we might meet. Hope you had a great time!!!

Gopherit: LOL about everything you said! And I remember hearing too that it takes engineers to change lightbulbs in the hotel industry due to liabilities and unions I think. I worked in the Hotel Restaurant Industry for a while many years ago and remember that being the case. Crazy, but they must protect themselves.

I am so glad you are going to finally check out the BWV! I am sure you will be very happy! I am sort of wishing I bought there now, although I know deep down that all the resorts have that special something to offer. I guess BWV will always hold a special place in my heart because they are my first. :lovestruc
Sounds like you have an exciting trip planned w/ the whole family! I can't wait to hear all the details when you get back.

I so agree w/ you on paying the extra $ to have someone shop for me when in WDW. We have so little time to go on vacation, that every minute counts for us..... and all of our moments, fun or challenging, are special to us because we have so few times where we are all together as a family. I found myself feeling so grateful for being able to experience DVC because for so many years I couldn't, and there are so many people who can't. I lead a very privileged life and made sure to remember that every single second. Thanks for the great pointers on feeding the kids in the villa. At home we do essentially the same thing. If we go out one night, we must eat in the next to unwind from the night before. My little guy is soooo good at home, but that's because his meltdowns happen in the comfort of our own home the next day when he is exhausted. I am sure as they grow, I will be using the villas more and more to allow them to unwind and rejuvenate for the next day, while we sip drinks out on the balcony....now that's what I call a vacation. You really put it into perspective for me and I am sure I will do the same in the next several years.

As far as your questions..... Well, I would be just thrilled to elaborate for you... LOL.

:chat:

I don't remember the surrey bike pricing.... prob around $10 or so for half an hour....but if you are 10 min more than that, they don't charge you more. They told us to come back when we wanted and we giggled and laughed the many trips we made around the BW. It was WELL worth the $. We even parked it on the bridge by EPCOT to watch the Fireworks. It is very difficult to pedal up hill at the bridges, but easy everywhere else. I was holding Caroline and my son's Buzzy and Woody dolls and my DH was peddling. Well, he demanded I help peddle up those hills because he was getting very tired and was laughing at the same time so we almost started going backwards. The family in front of us kicked out the oldest son to "push" the surrey up the hill. We made lots of friends that first night on the surrey and from that point onward we joked w/ surrey bikers knowing what they were going thru. It's like a little club now.

Luna Park Pool seemed very clean to me. I noticed no needed cleaning on the tiles, although as I've mentioned before, I was looking thru rose colored DVC glasses. I didn't look at them w/ a critical eye and may not have noticed if they did need a bit of cleaning. Although I think if they were really bad they would have caught my attention. I thought all of WDW was extremely clean. I read some posts in the rumors board about gum on the walkways and overflowing garbage cans. I actually looked for those things (being in the HR&IM Industry and having to clean up that junk and bathrooms myself and having a 2 yr old who insists on sitting on the ground and eating his fruit juice snacks off the ground) and noticed no problems whatsoever. I kept looking at the walkways, esp in MGM and noticed them looking spotless. I was very impressed.

Food..... well, that is my favorite topic. I have served many people in my past life and just LOVE to go out to dinner while on vacation and have others bring the good food to me. I am actually a pretty great customer though because I practically scrub the floors and table after our visit and tip 20 to 25% for good service. I really enjoy my dinners out and they really make my vacation. So the BW Restaurants where we ate........

Spoodles: In Room Dining - twice ............... DH had the chicken w/ cous cous dish.......MARVELOUS!
Breakfast.....We had the frittatas (sp?) and I walked them over to the pool where we ate our breakfast........ PERFECT!

ESPN: Too crowded most days (due to the Superbowl frenzy). They even set up a white tent w/ 20 TV's to show the game. It was hopping and looked like fun, but we didn't get a chance to eat there.

The Boardwalk Bakery: Danishes and coffee were good there.

Flying Fish: In Room Dining - twice.... I had the crab cakes w/ remoulade sauce which were to die for. Only had that sauce in select locations throughout Eastern US and love that sauce. That dinner and the gentleman who brought it both nights made this dinner my favorite while down there this time.

Cape May Cafe: We went to Goofy's Beach Blast on our last day there. It was relaxed, food was really good, and everyone who worked there were so warm and friendly w/ us. They sat w/ us and chatted, colored w/ my 2 yr old, rocked the baby, and asked us before they removed the buffet items since we were the last ones in the restaurant and we really camped out long. No snotty looks or huffs or sighs. Everyone smiled and seemed delighted we were there even though we were keeping them from finishing their work day. I was really pleased w/ their professional demeanor.

Yachtsman Steakhouse: We tried to get takeout our first night, but they didn't do takeout. They welcomed me to come in and showed me all the other kids in there, but I didn't feel like going thru all the hassle since we had traveled via 2 planes and a van to get there that day and didn't want to push the kiddies too far. I have eaten there numerous times in the past and it has been a wonderful place to dine. One of our favorite servers works there too and we usually go there to revisit him.

I wanted to try Beaches and Cream, but didn't have enough time.

We ate at the Biergarten the 2nd night and Tristan finally came out of his shell. He paraded w/ the other children and danced the chicken dance on the dance floor. Sylvia, our server, was a delight, and the couple sitting next to us were a LOT of fun. Why they thought to put us w/ an unmarried couple w/o kids, I have no idea. But it worked out beautifully and we really hit it off. They mentioned that other people's kids are great birth control, and we used to say the same thing before our kids. Now I love everybody's kids. Funny how things work. But they were really good sports about sitting next to a 2 yr old. I loved the Riesling Wine and my husband asked for their biggest beer and got a huge mug of beer. After a couple of those, our stroll home through the drizzle was delightful. The park was empty, both kids fell asleep in the stroller and we finally got the peace and quiet we needed. We strolled hand in hand back home, smiling the whole way, and thanking ourselves for buying into DVC. We made another PS for Biergarten for the end of our stay. The 2nd time (our last night) was just as good as the first. We will definitely go there again on future trips.

San Angel Inn: Kids were good "inside" the restaurant and the food and service from Celia were excellent. My DH doesn't care for ethnic foods, but he went for me and found tacos and quesadillas which he could eat. We both enjoyed our lunch there. We separated on our exit from the Inn, though, which lead to a disastrous conclusion. I stayed to pay the bill, then went to the bathroom, DH went outside w/ our darling and sweet son and daughter to get the stroller up and moving and to give Tristan some exercise. Apparently our DS decided on this trip (this has never been an issue before) that he must be w/in eyesight of mommy at ALL times and, if not, he was going to find her or scream at the top of his lungs until she finds him. Well, my DH found the stroller w/ the bird poop on it and my DS's coat, then DS noticed I was missing and took off after me into the Inn. My poor DH was holding DD by the stroller by the benches trying to clean up the mess when he realized DS was off and running. W/ DD in a football hold, he ran up the stairs to catch him. In the meantime... I meandered out of the Inn to find the stroller by the bench w/ no husband or children nearby. I waited thinking he was checking out the boats on the water or something. Well, my husband finally caught my DS right in front of the Mexican band who were playing at the time until my DS's screams drowned out their music. The nice band member decided to play my DS a personal solo to "tame the beast", and my DS screamed all the louder and if my son could have, he would have grabbed that poor man's instrument and bonked him over the head w/ it. I guess at this point, my poor DH who is normally at work all day and is not used to these wonderful mood swings (or as you would put it, Radioactive Meltdowns), picked our son up by his arms and literally "dragged" him and my poor DD who had to ride along on this adventure out of the Inn, down the stairs, and over to the stroller. My DH said he caught a glimpse of all the people and their open mouths staring at him like he was an alien. He wished he had that "flashy thing" on MIB to make them all FORGET what they just saw. He is not used to the humiliation us moms go thru on a daily basis. He comes home from work when everyone is nice and quiet and happy to see him. In the meantime, I am calling on his cell phone to find out where they all were and I heard the ringing coming closer and closer and looked around and saw DH's face, DS hanging by his arms w/ a red face, and DD still in her football hold wondering what the heck was going on, and I knew right then and there we were going back to the BW. Our day had officially come to an end.

I just saw the NY news segment titled "Eat at Your Own Risk" featuring the Biergarten, Brown Derby and San Angel Inn. Well, I ate at all 3 this time and LOVED them all very much. The food was delish, the service was perfect, and I will eat at all of them again in a heartbeat.

Wanted to, but didn't get the chance to eat at Fresh.

Well, now I have one of those WWIII stories about my children. I guess they aren't the perfect little angels we hope them to be. And the look on my DH's face was priceless. I feel he finally got just how head strong a 2 yr old could be. Luckily, because we did mostly dinner shows like the Biergarten and Spirit of Aloha and the Hoop de Doo, he was really well behaved due to watching the show.... my DH and DS. Ha Ha.

As far as character meals: We ate at Cape May Cafe as I mentioned above, Liberty Tree Tavern (delightful, great food, relaxed and friendly characters and CM's, and toasty warm on a rainy night at the MK), Chef Mickey's (very good as well, but much more hectic and energetic, a little too busy for me, but the characters worked really hard at spending quality time w/ us), Crystal Palace (perfect food and service as usual, characters were very friendly except for Pooh who seemed a bit off and antisocial, but nothing too noticeable for kids just my trained eye).

Thanks so much for asking all those wonderful questions gopherit. Of course you knew I always love to elaborate... I just needed you to ask. I was very happy to hear from you and you always give me a great laugh. You have a reputation now to live up to and I will expect to hear funny stories now every time you post now. No pressure though! It was great hearing from you!

bub: It was so nice of you to post your past experience w/ young children and to send me your kind thoughts. It is soooo nice to know that other parents have gone thru what we have gone thru. I had a lady come up to me in the store off of the BW Lobby and mention how "GOOD" my children were being. I told her it was my kid who was screaming about an hour before as my son was being dragged (yes, that time too) down the boardwalk by my DH. She said she heard other small children screaming throughout the parks and resorts, but has yet to hear my child doing so. I was amazed that other parents were going thru the torture we had been experiencing. Every time we looked at the other children in line and such, it was ours acting up. But I guess they all have their moments. I was so surprised at the limits of my DS though. At home we can go on 10 rides or so at our amusement park. I figured on 4 or 5 at WDW. He did well w/ 2 or 3. We really had to cut back due to all the extra stimulation maybe, or the jet lag maybe, or due to sleeping in an unknown bed.... who knows what triggers their episodes. They just seem to have more while in WDW. We had so much fun playing the "good" parent w/ the "well behaved" child.... while the other suffered w/ the "bad" one. We started using our 1,2,3 method w/ a spank on the bottom on 3 and he really began to get better after learning that method. At 2 he would clam up and sit nicely. It just took him a few days to learn it. We never had to use that on him at home because he never really acts up around here. But before we found out that he needed to see me at all times (not an issue at home), he had several meltdowns w/ my poor DH (who figured I was doing a lousy job raising this child w/ all of the tantrums.... he figured I wasn't disciplining him), melting to the ground and crying so that other kids had to step over him to get to the playground at Mission Space, and when my DH finally scooped him up to leave w/ him, he also would hit, scratch, cry terribly. I thought it was because he was a boy. But your story makes me feel better that girls do this too. The only problem is I get to look forward to going thru all this again w/ baby girl. Yippee. Thank you so much for your bus story.... I am going to read it word for word for my DH so he knows there are good and loving parents out there who also have those difficult times and that maybe it's not us... it's the age. And you have even more fun to look forward to...... your daughter will soon by 11, 12, 13..... and the stories I hear about girls at that age. My heart goes out to you. :eek: I'd love to chat again on the boards w/ you. Take care.

Nick@ VB+OKW: I was hoping to receive one of your smileys. Thanks for reading my posts and getting in contact w/ me. I always love reading your posts! Have a magical day!!

Disney Enthusiast
02-13-2004, 12:11 PM
K9pal: EXACTLY! I am also a Deluxe Concierge kind of girl. I've stayed everywhere in the World growing up going to Disney every year w/ my parents. We tented, stayed in the treehouses, value resorts. It wasn't until I got married that I was able to try out concierge for the first time. We stayed at the GF concierge on our 5 yr wedding anniversary and from that point onward, couldn't imagine doing anything else. Of course it cost a lot of money and so we were only able to visit every other year due to our concierge stays. That is why we didn't buy 6 yrs ago when we looked at DVC for the first time. I didn't want to give up on my different stays at all the different resorts and my deluxe stays. I get so much out of each theme and wanted the flexibility to stay wherever I wanted. But after having stayed in the villas, I will find it hard to go back to concierge. Having coffee in my room in the morning w/o having to "scare" the other guests in my robe as another thread and poster have mentioned is a great asset. And dropping by after a funfilled day at the parks as gopherit said to feed the kids at "home" so the family can unwind and get much needed rest is such a wonderful option. Plus, putting my 2 yr old down for nap in the bedroom, while the baby sleeps in the living room w/ Mommy and Daddy sipping drinks on the balcony is the best thing in the world for tired parents. That way, when the one child woke up, he or she didn't wake up the other one. That is a precious necessity to have. I too feared that the villas would be a step down in quality.... yeah, I will have the much needed necessities, but the quality will be more homey. I liked the decor and furniture of the deluxes. I was a bit bummed about losing that, but thought that I am a parent now and can always go back to those after the kids are grown. Well, after staying in a villa for the first time, I think it's as topnotch as the concierge deluxes, even roomier and better w/ the glass door showers, the muccccchhhhh longer balcony, the sitting area, full kitchen area, and the fabrics and decor and furniture were just as nice. And in the deluxe I would've had more trouble getting a child to nap if the other was awake. Here.... no problem. I had the relaxed feeling of being at home in the villa, but definitely not the feeling that I was giving up on beauty and quality. The only difference was Housekeeping, but I tend to like my privacy anyway and usually put "Do not disturb" signs out on the knob due to me napping or such so I didn't need someone to come in every day. I just tidied up after the kids each day and we had a clean and tidy villa the whole stay. But the actual furnishings are just as nice as the deluxes, only you got more room, and a microwave and fridge and huge bathroom etc. There is no comparing the 2. I might want to try our the concierge again as the kids get older to be pampered again and do things like the Sunrise Safari. But until then, I am thrilled w/ our purchase and will be staying in the villas. I am sure you will find the same results. And I am glad BC is your favorite, because we bought there and are looking forward to our first trip there. But first I think we are going to SSR. I find myself falling in love w/ each one too. I just can't help myself. I look forward to reading about your first trip in Sept. I haven't seen you on the DIS much yet myself and I am looking forward to getting to know you here in the future. Thank you so much for getting in touch w/ me.

AmyTags
02-13-2004, 12:39 PM
Thanks for posting your trip report. It was great!! We are going in May using our DVC for the first time and I am really excited. It was nice to read some of you experiences with your son. My daughter will be 22 months old when we go and I am getting a little nervous about that. We took her when she was 9 months old and it was so easy but now she can be a challenge when we are out. My biggest challenge with her is the stroller. She does not like it, she would rather walk. Did you fly? If so, any suggestions on how to keep her entertained on the plane. We have a NS flight which is only 2 hours and 15 minutes but that could be the longest 2 hours with her. She will not be happy that she has to sit in one place for that long.

Also, thanks for the report on Cape May Cafe. We do plan to eat there especially since we are staying at BCV.

Thanks again for your report, it was very informative and sounds like you had a WONDERFUL time.

Disney Enthusiast
02-13-2004, 01:20 PM
Well thanks for posting me AmyTags! I truly love hearing from new people. And I am sure you will very much enjoy your first trip home. My DS didn't start to become challenging until about 2 and 3 mos. but it sounds like your DD is already starting up (girls mature faster you see) and so you will probably want to do prior planning before your arrival. The problem w/ a 2 yr old and walking is they don't like to walk in a straight line. They explore, go into stores, hop off the sidewalk, walk backwards and into people. We tried to give him that independence only to make it 10 feet, then we started going the other way. You can't even stand there and wait for them to catch up because they are all over the place. Piggy back rides worked really great for us. We made it to the dinner and he had fun riding. So that is a thought. Usually if we lock him into the stroller, he is fine for a while until the boredom sets in. That is why you might see us using the stroller like a racecar or swerving in and out of traffic. We must look very dangerous to those walking by, but it keeps him entertained. My DH is a pro at that. The buses were an issue because he had trouble sitting for 45 min w/ no seatbelts and he got itchy and wanted to explore. When we restained him he cried. The dinner shows and character breakfasts worked out great for us. He LOVED the Hoop de Doo, Spirit of Aloha and Biergarten especially. The problem is getting to those locations and I or anyone on the boards can give you good tips on getting there. But he sat beautifully during the entire meal and watched the show, while we enjoyed ourselves, ate leisurely, and watched. He wouldn't eat the food though, so I usually fed him before we arrived so he had no meltdowns from lack of food. And kids are free at the dinner shows until 3 so it is a great time to take them. Very cost effective!

As far as the plane. That was tough. We found it to be difficult to switch planes because both kids would be sleeping on the first plane, we'd wake them up while switching to the other, and then they were difficult to keep quiet and still for the 2nd plane. But we managed w/ a few tips from our doctor and other mommy's on the boards. I always give my babies Benadryl while traveling to help them drain and not have ears popping. The doctor suggested I give Tylenol to help w/ the pain. I gave my son meds before his trip at 8 mos and he did really well. So I gave them both meds this time and it seemed to work ok. I then gave my son fruit juice snacks and pretzels and my daughter a bottle to help them swallow while we ascended and descended. Some people use gum for the 2 yr olds, but my son hasn't had gum yet and would just swallow it. Then if they don't fall asleep and start to get itchy, pull out the new toys. For my son I brought a new and small Buzzy and Woody, I packed about 20 green army men, a small matchbox ramp w/ a few cars, and a few Disney figurines all of which he had never seen before. I thought I had a new item for each leg of the trip that would keep his attn long enough to give everyone a pleasant ride. My DH didn't agree w/ buying all these new toys, but thought I was a saviour on the plane when I was able to quiet him quickly on the way home w/ the matchbox ramp. It was 10 pm and he was content. I noticed some really great princess figurines w/ dresses you could snap on the front of them which might work well in this situation. I thought about getting that for baby girl when she is old enough and traveling.

The only thing I found to be a problem were the seatbelts on the plane. If you are riding w/ her on your lap then this is not a problem for you. But if she has her own seat, beware. My DH was in charge of DS and when DH didn't get the trick out of the bag fast enough for DS, DS started to kick and get upset. He couldn't touch the seat in front of him, until he shimmied downward thru the belt until the belt was at his chest. Then he could reach the seat in front of him. And it was a bugger getting him thru to sit again. He had that melting thing going on. I switched w/ DH and he took the "good" child and I couldn't tighten the belt up anymore. So next time, I might bring his carseat (which you are allowed to do if you are buying that seat) and strap him in very well that way from his chest to his ankles. This way they have no chance of squirming under their seat belt (once they learn they can do that there is no going back) and it pushes them up a bit to be able to see outside the window (which he couldn't do). So remember this for next time if she is sitting on your lap this trip. My most important suggestion would be to bring crayons and a coloring book or small figurines and only bring it out when she really needs it. My son didn't see the matchbox til the last leg of the trip and that was the ticket to get us home in peace and quiet... worked like a charm.

So glad you wrote to me. It's nice to know there are so many newbies out there like me. Can't wait to hear all about your first trip home. Please keep in touch.

SleepyatDVC
02-13-2004, 02:34 PM
Originally posted by Disney Enthusiast

he had several meltdowns w/ my poor DH (who figured I was doing a lousy job raising this child w/ all of the tantrums.... he figured I wasn't disciplining him),

Oh yes, don't I just love it when DH asks me, "why are you letting her get away with this?" I usually respond, "oh yeah, you're right here, why are you letting her get away with it?" :rolleyes:

diskat
02-13-2004, 03:00 PM
Brigitte
Great report and very much enjoyed it. We love Bwv and always have a great trip when we stay there. (Of course I love staying anywhere at disney!) :wave2:

Disney Enthusiast
02-13-2004, 03:36 PM
SleepyatDVC: LOL! You are so right on the money there. I can take my son to the mall in his stroller shopping for his sister's clothes for HOURS and he just sits there like a little cutey pie as good as can be and everyone comments on how good he is. I take him to WDW and he turns into the Tasmanian Devil. And my DH looks at me strangely like, "Is this our child? Is this what you've been letting him get away with?" And I look at him like, "I swear.... he's never done THAT before." And then we have our Dr. Phil talk on how to handle this child so he doesn't run the whole show w/ our family. Ya gotta pick your battles w/ those 2 yr olds and make sure you win the battle when you do pick. I've kept my husband informed of some of the Dr. Phil suggestions on family discipline and we both seem to agree w/ the good Dr. on most issues. But his quotes came back to haunt me in Disney. "What does Dr. Phil say about this," my DH asks. "You said Dr. Phil says this about that...." says my DH. And when my DH complained too much or referred to Dr. Phil's tactics too much, I offered for him to jump right in and help out. We were definitely in the thick of battle in WDW. It's amazing to me that you need 2 adults to even come close to handling a 2 yr old. And as Dr. Phil says, "....and the 2 yr old is winning the battle." For a man who would rather not hold any babies (even his own until they can walk), my DH sure did request Caroline a lot this trip so I got to be the proud parent to handle the other one. I never thought about it that way, but way to get that bonding going.... ehhh? By the way.... my DS is back to being a perfect little angel now that we are home and in his own environment. So for all of you people out there who heard us coming from a mile away, we are now a well behaved, soft spoken and polite little family again. Even the "Thank you's" are back full swing. Ha ha.

diskat: Thanks for responding and sending me your well wishes. I am so glad you had many good trips to the boardwalk which only shows me that the people who have had problems when staying there are exceptions to the rule. I enjoyed hearing from you. Please keep in touch.

MJTinNH
02-13-2004, 05:31 PM
Bridgett,

Thank you for answering my question regarding your grocery supplies. Like you, I also mostly eat out while on vacation. So I will probably try the fax list on the member website. I look forward to a more relaxed breakfast in the room. In the past I used room service for coffee and light breakfast. Now I will not have to worry about scaring the skinney out of someone who comes to the door when I answer it before being able to get myself presentable for the day.;)

I also enjoyed your reviews of the restaurants around the WDW. You mentioned a few I have not tried yet, but I will!

I will write a report when I come back in May, however, I think you should ghost write it for me. Your enjoyment of your trip jumped right off the report!:)

Disney Enthusiast
02-13-2004, 07:30 PM
You're so sweet to say all that MJTinNH! You are welcome and I hope we get to chat a lot more before your trip!

gopherit
02-13-2004, 08:30 PM
Me again, so don't expect brevity! ;)

The dining-in option intrigues me -- I had no idea Flying Fish would set it up in your room! Just what restaurants around there will do that? And with what other associated fee (aside from a nice tip, obviously)?

I wanted to also comment about something you said earlier -- about how you knew DVC was "right" when your dh didn't want to rush home. Amen to that one! That is the MAIN reason we have DVC -- so that DH absolutely MUST take a vacation! Otherwise, we would simply use up all our vacation time on our usual World Tour for Peace amongst our respective families. Now I love our families -- don't get me wrong -- but these folks won't let you stay in a hotel, we don't eat out, space is at a premium usually (we once slept two adults and two kids in a tiny single bedroom with a dble bed with a crater in the middle -- UGH) , and let's face it, while I love tax-free shopping as much as the next person, Delaware ain't exactly the hot-bed of entertainment. So we always feel like we are "work" for whomever houses us, and we never feel like we're "home". With DVC, we can take family WITH us, to "neutral" (wonderfully neutral, I might add!) turf, where dining out is a DEFINITE option and pleasure, and any dining-in is shared so as to never be a burden on ANYONE. It has been WONDERFUL. This is a guy who got very very nervous about taking a week for our honeymoon (and mind you, we were in GRAD SCHOOL at the time, and it was summer, not even like we had fixed jobs or anything!) He is NOT a traveler, whereas I have always traveled since birth, I love it, and even spent a year overseas. So how do two opposites ever meet at the DVC crossroads? Well, I think I knew my DH had truly become "DVC" and "one" with me towards the end of our last trip -- after 9 days, he was actually wistful -- and commented to our boys that he thought 9 days was much better than the 5 day trips. So then it came time to set up this upcoming August trip. We were taking a family "vote" on who to invite, for how long, what resort, etc. When it came DH's time to vote, his exact words were, "Just set it up so we can stay for as ABSOLUTELY long as possible...how many [days] can we afford? Can we do 2 weeks this time? Just set it up for the MAXIMUM." I love that man. :yes: He had also always balked at an add-on, but that was another telling-sign that DVC had gotten into his heart/head -- I had given up on the idea (we had one thing after another attack our slush fund -- car problems, termites, etc) when he said one day, "You know, I was thinking about those BWV points you wanted, and if you really wanted to do it, I bet I know how you could swing it...." He is very financial-security driven, so I know if HE was willing to part with the $$, it was (a) financially doable without risk while also (b) a true testimony of his affection for our vacations! (Have I mentioned I just love this man?)

And it's a darn good thing I love him too, because he often does the kid-swap thing with me too, or somehow pins our child's errant behavior on me! I can relate to your coments on that! He just can't understand how, if we follow a system, there would be any deviation from the path. He doesn't realize that whatever book he got that idea out of -- OUR KID DID NOT READ! In contrast, I'm a significance-driven type parent, so when deviation from the desired DOES occur, I tend to think it was something I should have done, or done better. Ahhh, parenting -- the endless challenge! That's why we need really really good vacations, right?!?

You're already a step ahead ofthe game to realize that high stimuli (like WDW!) is a stressor for your child. Sounds like you managed to find the right balance and keep your vacation on track, too! And FWIW, save some of your wits / strength for that dd... from what I've experienced with my Caroline (now 3, going on 33), my boys were very physical in their play as well as their outbursts, but our dd puts a whole new emotional spin on it EVERYTHING! On the one hand, she can hold my heart in her hand with a smile or a cute saying or a tender hug, or the way she calls her brothers her "boyz", but then again... the old saying about a woman scorned applies at a very early age!!

Disney Enthusiast
02-14-2004, 07:44 AM
Cost of flight for 3 seats to FLA: $700

Cost of eating around WDW for 8 nights: $1000

Gopherit's stories: PRICELESS! ::yes::

The in-room dinner cost about what it would in the restaurant.....around $30. Then they added an 18% gratuity onto the bill for you. We didn't see any more "hidden" costs and thought the pricing was fine because we were able to enjoy Spoodles and Flying Fish from the comfort of our own home. The server brought real china w/ the metal hoods over each entree, our own salt and pepper shakers, wine glasses and bread and butter. It was just what we needed. We wanted to eat out nice while on our vacation, but didn't want the stress of taking care of 2 unruly children. So $30 a plate was EXTREMELY worth it for us. Maybe not for a family of 4 or so, but for us 2 it was perfect. We even tipped the guy $10 extra for doing such a good job setting up our meals. It was like having our own butler.

The in-room dining included selections from Spoodles, Flying Fish, The Brewery, and I think ESPN. Each of these restaurants offered 3 or 4 selections to choose from their menu. The Crab Cakes I had were actually an appetizer at the Flying Fish and 2 portions were put together to make an entree. So sometimes they might change their signature dish for the in-room dining. The menu also had the regular "hotel" selections that were more generic like breakfast, clam chowder, hamburgers, etc. I had the clam chowder which was VERY good. No restaurants from the Y&B Club were included.... I checked. When we tried to get takeout at the YS, the host asked if I was staying at the Y&B Club because then I could order off their in-room dining menu. So I know the YS offers selections for the BCV.

As far as DH's........ Mine had trouble getting away for our honeymoon too. It was during our "busy" season and there was no one to run the business while we were gone. But obviously we made it, because I am a Mrs. now, and the whole company did NOT fall apart w/o him for a week. His main job is the business, and my main job is being a mommy... so I guess I mostly responsible for the discipline of our children. And I too feel really bad when things don't go like clockwork. I am usually a type A personality, everything has a place and a schedule kind of person. (I even taught my son how to pick up his toys before he learned how to play w/ them. We made it a game of tidying up the house.... yes, I am that bad.) Then your child turns 2 and flips the entire world upside down. I have found out just how little I can control my life and my environment w/ 2 kids. It certainly is a wake up call. All one can do is laugh and go w/ the flow. I am sure that is how all the other mothers make it work out there...... just enjoy the ride. Soon I'll be wondering how they grew up so fast.

I adore my DH too. He gave me 2 wonderful children and the DVC. And although his face scrunches up funny when Tristan is not the "perfect" child and looks at me w/ his questioning gaze as if to say, "Are you going to allow him to do this?" He is also the wonderfully attentive Daddy that will change the topic by playing w/ DS or pointing to things out the window to get DS out of his meltdown mode, or he scoops DS up when the meltdown is inevitable and takes DS quickly to a Neutral Zone for peace talks. He is also the type of man that will be happy to sit down after the kids go to bed and discuss upcoming game plans for future difficult situations. We have had many late night discussions on how to handle the kids. And my favorite is when I can hear him on the intercom reading to our DS about Tigger and Buzzy and Simba and hearing my DS's giggles emanating out of the room. My DH may have just walked in the door from work, but he gives the second he walks in the door. So even though he is working most of the time.... I must admit, he is very involved w/ the raising of these kids. He may not be physically present, but he certainly provides a support network which is so necessary. I just find it so comical when he is thrown into the thick of it when we go on vacation. All of a sudden it's 24-7, it's in your face, and there is no going to the office for a timeout. I think he knows now when I greet him at the front door, why I am so beat up every night, smiling, but definitely beat up.

About WDW and the extra stimuli. That is why I love DVC so much. I knew I was coming back soon, and we could catch that ride or this show the next time. We didn't get to the Lion King Show at AK! Can you believe it? We had to cut our AK visit short and missed it and never got back to it. But as we were leaving I thought, we'll catch it next year and we strolled right out. A year ago I would have fought tooth and nail to get that last show in. We canceled dinner too at Marrakesh and stayed in the villa instead. And Marrakesh gives a 20% discount to DVCers. But we'll catch it next time. And so for the first time we were able to meander around, not have plans til the next morning, change our plans like when we went back to the Biergarten and relax by the pool. My DH works sooo much that it was nice to see him lounging by the pool and going down the slide umpteen million times just for the heck of it. Vacations don't get much better than that. So my commando-style of vacationing is now behind me for awhile. But I can really get used to this type of vacation. And this one seems to resonate more for me. I remember riding the Pirates over the years, but don't remember each specific ride I made on the Pirates, but I will remember sitting by the pool at the BWV forever and what year we did it. So the attractions don't matter as much as the family time spent together. That is what I will think back on when my babies are grown and that is what DVC gives to us. Talk about value. Coming home w/ wonderful and funny memories makes DVC worth every single penny we spent on it.

I love your stories so much gopherit. I am sure others on the boards have gotten many laughs out of them too. Keep them coming!

gopherit
02-14-2004, 09:16 AM
Originally posted by Disney Enthusiast
[B]Cost of flight for 3 seats to FLA: $700

Cost of eating around WDW for 8 nights: $1000

Gopherit's stories: PRICELESS! ::yes::

Aw shucks... yer makin' me blush! :blush: I just wish I could get airfare prices like that... best seat I could get would be $300 for one (then multiply by five and owwwwwch!)

The in-room dining included selections from Spoodles, Flying Fish, The Brewery, and I think ESPN. Each of these restaurants offered 3 or 4 selections to choose from their menu. The Crab Cakes I had were actually an appetizer at the Flying Fish and 2 portions were put together to make an entree. So sometimes they might change their signature dish for the in-room dining. The menu also had the regular "hotel" selections that were more generic like breakfast, clam chowder, hamburgers, etc. I had the clam chowder which was VERY good. No restaurants from the Y&B Club were included.... I checked. When we tried to get takeout at the YS, the host asked if I was staying at the Y&B Club because then I could order off their in-room dining menu. So I know the YS offers selections for the BCV.

Wow, you even read my mind -- my next question was going to be if you knew if BCV had in-room dining, and which restaurants did you think it might be?!? You're psychic! (Set up your own 1-800 number and earn a little extra DVC cash!)

I think the 18% is VERY reasonable -- I pay that or more in a tip anyway. To have that kind of service -- WOW! That is a service that could also come in extremely handy if you had the misfortune of an ill family member, too, and couldn't leave the room. Definitely something for me to keep in mind! :scratchin

About San Angel Inn: More questions! THis is an "iffy" one on my "to do" list -- I'm torn. We've been inside and taken the boat ride at Mexico -- so I know how nice the atmostphere is. But I keep hearing so many conflicting things about the food / service. Did it seemed cramped at all? (Some have complained of this) My dh is NOT adventurous with food -- he's downright picky and very conventional to a fault! (I somehow manage to love him DESPITE his dining flaws!) To give you some idea on his pickiness, when we order Chinese food, he will sit and pick EVERY TINY SPECK OF DICED ONION out of his fried rice! And he will only order beef and broccoli (it's "safe" he says -- no peppers or "weird stuff"). Peppers and celery are given the same special treatment as onions if found in a dish. (Yet this man will eat cooked spinach... go figure). Cultured dining experiences leave him clammy -- words he doesn't wholly recognize (like "wasabe" or "chorizo" or "chipotle") put him in a cold sweat. :scared: Is there anything on the menu there that is relatively tame? I had heard reports that it wasn't like "standard" American-Mexican dining (i.e. Chi-chis, etc.) Does this mean it's more spicy or less? DH could probably manage with an enchilda (he eats them at the Mexican eatery in our town, which is totally owned and operated by a Mexican family, and I feel certain there must be peppers lurking in his food somewhere, they have just managed to camoflauge the little suckers and turn the lights low enough that he can't see them). My SIL/BIL love hispanic / Mexican food and I thought they would love this place, but I do have to be sure DH won't go hungry!

And about the Biergarten -- that's another one that sounds really fun. My mom loves this place, as does my sister and her family, but we have YET to try it. Sounds like your kids enjoyed it -- I am thinking that with 5 kids in our group this summer, a place like this might be a better choice than, say, Le Cellier, where they might feel too stuffy and boxed-in. (And anytime a kid is given a chance to dance, they should!!) Besides -- doing Mexico and Germany would be a truce, of sorts -- Last trip, SIL took her son into Mexico and made a big deal over, "We are in Mexico! This is Mommy's heritage!" BIL is always upset too at how much my SIL spends on stuff -- especially for what he feels are purely sentimental purchases (i.e. souvenirs from a trip -- no. A new boat for him to fish -- YES!!) So when the strollers hit Germany, my sassy BIL had to poke fun and say, "Look, Son! This is Germany! THis is my Homeland! This is your heritage! Come, let us spend $200 dollars!" :rolleyes: So ANYWAY -- about the Biergarten menu -- I can't glean much from the menus posted on other boards -- is it mostly sausages and brats? What sorts of other stuff is in there? (Amazingly, DH does love sausage, though -- he could be ok in here, depending upon what else is served...) Is it the usual kid fare (nuggets, hot dogs, mac and C, oh my... nuggets, hot dogs, mac and c, oh my...) or is there other stuff? How did your dd fare in Germany and Mexico? We'll have my 8 mos old godson with us. I can recall taking our dd at 8 mos to Teppanyaki, and she did fine, except I was very nervous the whole time that something would splatter off the grill (they didn't really have a good place for us to put her -- she ended up in a booster for a while, then on my lap.) We had thought about Teppanyaki for this trip -- but with 5 kids and 4 adults, the wee ones have us outnumbered... we need places that will hold their interest. We are going to try Ohana this time (for our 14th anniversary, no less.) And we love WC -- that's always fun for kids and parents. For character meals, we're going to Cape May (very excited about this -- and you made it sound even better! We plan on a late meal there too!) And probably Crystal Palace. And mayyyyybe Chef Mickey's. We hope to try Beaches but it may be hard -- with 8 poeple, they don't exactly have a lot of seating to accommodate us! The guys want to go to ESPN (if for no other reason than to see the TVs in the Toilets, as my sons say!) And SIL and I are taking a spa morning at GF while the kids do the Pirate Adventure. I would like to try Spoodles, but if we're too beat to make it there after the water park, at least now we now the meal can come to US! We're also doing HDDR and I have plans to get CRT for DD and I one day while the boys do DQ (Disney Quest ... not Dairy Queen!) Failing CRT, we will try for Great Adventures in Cooking or the Tea Party. (When that DD of yours gets a bit older, you MUST do this -- a girl's day out! I did this with DD at age 2 and we've done it ever since! WONDERFUL memories! And the boys enjoy their day together too!)

That's another aspect of DVC, I think -- it turned me into (even more of) an extreme planner! I figure I do all my "commando initiatives" BEFORE the trip, so that I can then RELAX when I'm on it!

Disney Enthusiast
02-14-2004, 02:23 PM
Hello there gopherit! I got a free time slot here to answer some of your questions. I'll try to be concise, but you know how difficult that is for me.

San Angel Inn: I LOVE IT THERE! And always have. I have eaten there several times over the years and think it is very authentic to the region. I mentioned this on the restaurant board though and a poster from Mexico strongly disagreed saying she had eaten Mexican food her whole life and San Angel Inn is definitely a TexMex kind of restaurant, which may not be bad if we think of our DH's tastes. But I worked at a Mexican Restaurant in my College town who tried to be as authentic as they could until Chi Chi's came in and took over. They even shipped in their own mesquite wood to grill the chicken and beef. And I have eaten Mexican food too in Mexico in my past and I think San Angel Inn does a really great job. The beans are black beans, not refried, and the sauces are whitish (which looks a bit weird at first since we are used to that cheddar yellow orange color) and are delicious. The chicken is so tender in the enchiladas and just melts in your mouth. I usually get cheese enchiladas or been burritos because I don't like most restaurants' chicken. But the San Angel's was marvelous. My DH hates onions and peppers too and he scraped off the few strips of onions on the top of his enchilada. The ones inside must have been too small because he didn't even find any. There is hope though. When he got the Spoodles chicken dinner, it was on a bed of Cous Cous and he was not too excited. He tried it, loved it and ordered the dish again a few nights later. So there you go. I scoured the menu for something DH could eat... Nachos, Quesadillas, Tacos (he only recognizes the hard shells) and we weren't disappointed. I didn't see any hard shell tacos on the menu, but DH seemed to do ok w/ the soft taco. He had the platter w/ 1 enchilada, 1 taco, and 1 quesadilla and you can change that to 3 enchiladas, or 2 tacos and 1 quesadilla or whatever you want. They are so nice and very willing to bend over backwards for you. I also got the Tortilla Soup... yummm! As far as the restaurant being cramped..... YES!!! We always seem to manage to get a table right up at the fence by the water so it seems roomy due to the water being right there, but getting out of that small area took some major negotiations w/ the other diners. When DH went out to the stroller w/ both kids and that horror ensued which I described in detail earlier, I was to pay the bill and carry the backpack and carrier out to meet them. I couldn't lift the carrier up high enough to clear the seats, and I couldn't go betw the seats because we were so jammed in there. I think of it as my Mexican adventure! It didn't detract from our dining experience though. I still love it there.

The Biergarten: I have heard so many mixed signals on this one. Some people don't like sitting w/ others. I am the same way most times because I see so little of my DH, the last thing I want to do is make new friends and not see my DH during vacation either. But we really enjoyed the other couple and the other family we dined w/ on the 2 nights. We laughed a LOT and had a marvelous time. Now maybe we were lucky, but in Disney, I meet very few mean people. So we enjoyed that aspect. You on the other hand will get your own table or maybe even 2 side by side because of the number in your party. The food is good...... Not the BEST meal I had in WDW, but it is a good meal (like Hoop de Doo good). The buffet included everything from sauerkraut to sausages, from lentil salad to dumplings. It had pork, roast beef, roast beef wrapped w/ something inside (although I have no idea what) but very good. The wine and beer are very good and the entertainment is energetic and great. It was worth it to me to get "good" food rather than "truly superb" food in return for the entertainment for the kids. Both kids did well and Tristan even paraded around the restaurant. While he was being entertained, we were making another trip to the buffet. So we really liked it there. Tristan doesn't eat any food in restaurants because he is pickier than his father, but I have heard that all restaurants at WDW provide the standard kids meals so you shouldn't have an issue w/ that. For example, when we went to The Spirit of Aloha, the very nice server asked what Tristan eats and we said "NOTHING". She asked, "Mac and Cheese?" "NO." "Chicken Tenders?" "NO." "PBJ?" "NO." She asked, "What does he eat then?" "Crackers." So she came out w/ a plate of Goldfish and crackers. So they really do try and be accomodating. And Allears.net will give you their menu when you want to know for sure. The only suggestion I would have is to not go to the later seatings. Tristan would just begin to warm up by the end of their 20 min show (and we were eating at the time) so we figured we would eat our dinner, then during the second show, take him to the dance floor to dance and play. But we always managed to eat during their last show. So I had to stop eating to walk him to the dance floor, then he didn't want to get back in his seat, then I had to eat REALLY fast before he got too bored and wanted OUT. Next time I will make a PS for earlier, watch the first show while I eat and let him watch and warm up, then as we're drinking coffee and eating desserts, take him dancing. But w/ your kids being older, you may not have that problem. They can prob. dance on their own.

I have tried WCC and just love it there. We took our nephews when they were 6 and 8. We all loved it. We also took them to the HdeD and they loved that too. The Pirates thing sounds neat! And I just can't wait to find out which princess is DD's favorite someday. We will then try out CRT or the Storybook breakfast or the tea party. I was so proud of myself. I met someone on the monorail coming back from the Luau who said a CM told her there was no other princess breakfast other than CRT and so I let her know about the Storybook one in Norway? She couldn't believe I knew that and a CM didn't and was getting quite miffed and so I explained there is a lot for them to learn and remember and that I found out from other experts like you on the DIS and Allears. So hopefully next time she will check in on the DIS before making her plans.

Never heard of that cooking one though... what is that one? I never thought of doing a girls' day out before, prob. because DD is so young... but that is definitely something to think about!!!

Thanks for all of your marvelous suggestions.... Hope I answered your questions. Definitely try to get to Spoodles at least for Breakfast or something. It is a really nice restaurant. Gotta go... my family is here for Valentine's day and I am the cook... Aghhh!!!
:wave2:

gopherit
02-14-2004, 08:10 PM
THanks for the response, especially given that you had company coming over! Glad to see we aren't the only family who dines in for Valentine's Day! We just finished our big family feed too...

As for the Grand Adventures stuff -- try this spot:

http://allears.net.com/btp/grandadven.htm

The "cooking" one takes kids aged 3-10 and they get to make an apron, and make desserts with the chef, then parade around the GF doling out their goodies. My dd is a HUGE cooking fan -- she would love this! Tea party is with Alice characters.

THANKS FOR THE SAI info! I made DH read it -- and I said, "See? HER DH doesn't do peppers and onions, either! And he foudn stuff to eat!" DH nodded approvingly and seemed to agree that it was worth a shot! ;)

You should post over on the restaurants board -- there's lots of folks over there that could benefit from your experiences!

Thanks again!!

LoveToDisney
02-14-2004, 11:35 PM
Thanks for the great trip report. It's exciting to read all the positive things about BWV. We are looking forward to our first trip in June staying at BCV and hope to have a wonderful "magical beginning" as yours was. Your delightful report really made me eager to go. Thanks for sharing so much detail with us.
:jumping1:

zurgswife
02-15-2004, 07:48 AM
Great Report....BWV is also my favorite....Don't have any urge to stay any where else...:sunny: :sunny:

Disney Enthusiast
02-15-2004, 10:04 AM
Gopherit: Glad I helped and I will try to get over on the restaurant boards and post there.... I just have so much on the DVC board and it's hard to leave it for a second! Thanks for the Adventures in Cooking info and Tea Party. Sounds like a real treat for girls' day out. Hope your DH enjoys SAI. It is so hard to please those DH's and I really would hate for him to be disappointed. We had a great V-Day. We had BIL, SIL, and the 3 DN and MIL and FIL over for wings and steaks. We had a lot of fun. Hope you all did too! Talk to you soon. I'll look for you on the boards!

LoveToDisney: I am sure you will have a lovely time at the BCV. I just bought points there in Dec and have yet to stay there. I will love to hear your trip report about the resort so I can look forward to my first stay there. Thanks for getting in touch w/ me and I will send Pixie Dust your way for a wonderful 1st trip in June.

Zurgswife: I can surely understand why you feel that way. Almost wish I bought points there instead. But then I remember how lucky I was to buy into SSR and BCV which made it possible for me to stay at the BWV this time. I certainly can't complain. I am blessed. You do have wonderful taste though! ::yes:: I certainly enjoyed your post. Thanks for reaching out to say "Hello".

Forever a Princess
02-15-2004, 10:45 AM
Brigitte,

Thanks for all of your posts. I'm so happy that DVC is a great fit for you and your family.

I must say that I think that it's way cool on how you handled your darling 2 year old. We don't have kids. If I was in the same situation I probably would of had to pack up and leave. Way to go on making things work!!!!!! Don't you just wish that kids would come with an instruction booklet?

Your post helped me decide on how we are going to approach the DVC
-we were going back and forth between booking a studio or a one bedroom for our first trip. (Hoping for our card from DVC real soon). By your post (many thanks again) we will go with the one bedroom for the following reasons.
I like to take naps. DH usually has to leave the room to go do somthing else. No he can stay in the room and watch tv/read a book, etc.
-the whirlpool tub sounds divine. I have a bursitis in my hip that is seeing no end to tomorrow. I'm sure the tub will come in handy at the world.
-I love the idea of the washer and dryer. Now we can take much less. Gasp! I can't believe I said that. I'm a Libra that can never decide what to wear!!!
-The idea of the full Kitchen is way cool. No that we intend to cook many meals, but having the option to cook on or two would be great.
-The Space. We can spread out and have a relaxaing vacation.

I was so glad to hear in your post that you purchased the groceries at the Boardwalk. We've shopped at several of the grocery stores around Disney. For some reason I always feel like I'm not on vacation when I'm in line at the grocery store. Sure you pay more for the convenience. But for us I'd rather clip coupons back home and be able to "splurge" at the World.

Glad to hear that you eat out on your vacations. We plan to use the kitchen for breakfast and lunch. I'm not good with cooking complex dinners.

I did not know that you could order from Spoodles and Flying Fish. That sounds awesome. Sometimes we are just too tired or in the lazy vacation mode and do not want to go to the restaruant to eat. Do they have a separate menu for this or is everything included into one on the Boardwalk In Room Menu?

Isn't amazing how "park touring habits" change over time. Two trips ago I started "pulling" DH and I out of the park for a midday break. He didn't like it at first-I practically had to drag him out of the park. We went back to the resort-took a nap, read a book, swam. Did some downtime and recharged the batteries. Both of us (yes he'll admit it now) felt so much better after). Made the rest of the day so much more enjoyable.

That's what got me seriously thinking about DVC. If we had a place to go back and relax. A couch and living room space and a frig for a nice cold beverage would enhance our vacation experience. Sounds like for all of us DVC has put the Vacation back into the vacation.


Again, Thanks for your posts!

Renee

princess:

Forever a Princess
02-15-2004, 10:48 AM
Brigitte

I forgot to mention that after reading your post(s) it confirmed that DH and I will definetly NEED to be more points!! Don't ya think????!!!!!:Pinkbounc :bounce:

Reneeprincess:

DukeStreetKing
02-15-2004, 11:52 AM
Quoting DisneyEnthusiast:

[I forgot about the fiery redhead personality comment I made a while back... LOL!!! You should see some of the photos taken of him on the trip.... his red REALLY came out in the pictures... maybe from his personality shining thru. He hated being dragged around the parks. We tried to make him go from point A to point B too many times to see "Rolie Polie" or "Buzzy".... and being 2, he was happy to just swim in the pool or play w/ the fun mirrors on the BW, or roll around in the grass near France at EPCOT. My DH took him on the speed boats at the Contemporary and said Tristan barely noticed he was in the boat.... but loved playing w/ the line used to tie up the boat at the docks. So we finally got smart about it and realized we didn't need to get him to and plop him on all the rides. It was more enjoyable just watching him wrestling on the lawn w/ his Daddy. I would sit on the bench w/ baby girl, and the boys would play. So by the end of the trip, the tantrums were gone and he was as good as gold. We would take him home for a nap and go back out to dinner and he did great. If anyone heard screams during the beginning of our trip though, I am sure that was us. Sorry to all you out there who were bothered. He wanted to go left, we right.... it was a disaster. But that is what was so great about DVC..... We knew we'd be back soon, so why push it and see everything?! There was no need.]

What did I just read? A parent actually taking the needs of their children into consideration during a vacation to WDW? Holy cow!

Thanks for the great trip report. I made me even more anxious to get back to the World. It was nice to read about the great time you had and about how it made you a better parents. Your kids will appreciate Disney so much more if you can do it at their pace.

Disney Enthusiast
02-16-2004, 09:22 AM
Forever a Princess: I do believe you will be very happy w/ a 1 bedroom. I remember as a girl reading late into the night w/ a sleeping family... I had to sit in the tub in the bathroom to keep from irritating the parents. So if your DH takes naps, a 1 br will work out great for you 2. And you'll get that great jacuzzi tub which is wonderful after a long day in the parks. And we used the refrigerator for storing milk, cheese, and wine coolers and the microwave for heating bottles and reheating past dinners from the Brown Derby or Boardwalk for lunch the next day. Never got to do that before. And think of coming back from the parks and having a nice glass of wine out on the balcony. Not a bad idea. And the washer and dryer really worked for us. Due to all of the baby paraphenalia (gosh they need a lot) and the need to bring layers for all different types of weather, my DH and I only packed 3 T's each, 2 pants, 2 shorts, 1 sweatshirt, etc. And if it was sunny more than 3 days (which it was) we would wash and wear again. That worked out GREAT!

The only thing I would change in a 1 br would be to put a door betw. the bedroom and the bathroom w/ the jacuzzi (yes, there are 2..... 1 w/ the jacuzzi and sink w/ hairdryer and closet, and another w/ the shower and another sink). I didn't bring a hairdryer because the villas have one. But I couldn't dry my hair when DS was napping because it was the adjoining room w/ no door. So I had to wait til he woke up before I dried my hair or I just woke him. So bring your own Hairdryer if you think you might want to get ready while DH is asleep, and you can plug it into the bathroom w/ the shower. The provided hairdryer is attached to the wall and must be used in the jacuzzi area. We made do, but I will prob. bring my own next time.

There was the one Boardwalk In-Room Dining Menu on the coffee table w/ the lamp. Inside that were selections from each of the Boardwalk restaurants, as well as the generic room service selections, and alcohol selections from the bar. You ordered off of that one menu and your order could include selections from several restaurants. And then 1 CM brought up your entire order. It was REALLY cool! We watched the Superbowl and ordered in and had a great time just "hanging out" at the villa. There is another generic menu which you can hang on your door for breakfast the next morning w/ the usual eggs, pancakes, juice, etc.

And as far as we handled the 2 yr old. Thank you for the nice comment, but we really felt we were failing him at the time. They don't come w/ instruction booklets and you can read and watch shows on parenting and listen to advice til you're blue in the face, and then you are in the thick of it and forget evertything you learned. It's like getting mugged..... some people freeze, some fight, some cry, some run.... you never know what you are going to do until you go thru it. My DH and I agree w/ our discipline when we discuss it calmly and quietly after the kids go to bed. But then when you are standing w/ a perfect child who all of a sudden starts to scream out of no where, and people start to gather to see what's going on, you freeze and forget everything and only seem to notice those around you turning their heads and getting irritated. It's hard to be objective and clear then. In a restaurant you can scoop him up and leave w/ him, but not on a plane. And on the boardwalk or in the park, you are leaving w/ him, but have to walk by all the guests to get back to your villa... and they are all looking your way. You just wish you can beam yourself back to your room. Once we relaxed and stopped going commando though, things really turned around. Thanks for your nice comment though. At least someone knows we were trying to keep him under control. :earsboy:

And yes... more points are definitely in your future. ::yes:: We could only do 6 nights w/ 196 pts this past vacation and paid for an addt'l 2 nights w/ the DVC discount. Next year since SSR is open we'll be able to use 300 pts which is more like what we need for our size family. I'll keep my fingers crossed that you'll be able to add-on sometime.

Thanks so much for getting in touch. I loved reading your post as you were thinking about how a 1 br will suit your needs best. You really put some thought into it and so I am sure you are making the right decision for you. I loved chatting w/ you on the boards. Take care and good luck w/ all of your decisions. And I am a LIBRA too! I totally understand you!!!!

DukeStreetKing: Thanks for being so nice to me. We are better parents for it. Just wish I didn't have to have everyone else suffer at WDW during our stay too. We are the type of parents who like to discipline in private and have perfectly well behaved children when out in public. We love the looks on peoples faces when we are dining at a nice restaurant w/ our kids and they are sooo good. The other guests will approach us and say, "What nice children you have and so we just had to meet them." Of course if they misbehaved, we'd get them outta there fast, but usually don't have to do so. We know, deep down, the other diners are just sooo happy that our kids were quiet and didn't ruin their dinner and we are so proud. Then we went to WDW. Aghhh! He was still great in the restaurants due to the dinner shows, but dragging him kicking and screaming thru the parks to get him home sure did turn some heads. I just kept thinking, "I can't go any faster!" And I know the other parents must be thinking, "Hope my children don't follow suit and start acting up too now that they've seen that bratty child!"

So against all of my preconceived notions, we did what he wanted and had a marvelous time. Never wanted a 2 yr old to run the household, but I guess on vacation, parents have to give in a little in order to have a nice vacation. And the funny thing is.... once we did it "his" way, we found out that he knew what we needed more than we did. We certainly didn't need to see the rides again. But we did need to sit by the pool and relax and enjoy ourselves. Don't all parents need this? Here we were willing to run ourselves ragged for him when all we needed to do to make him happy was relax and get some vitamin D. Go figure. Sometimes 2 yr olds can be very intuitive and smart! They just have trouble communicating their suggestions to you...... so all he could do was throw a tantrum until we got it. DUHHH! Next time I'll learn to listen better. So we still won't let him run the entire show around here, but we will start to listen to and take his "suggestions" a little more often. :)

It was sweet of you to write me DukeStreetKing! I hope we stay in touch in the future and get to know each other better. Thanks for reaching out to me!

gopherit
02-18-2004, 12:17 AM
Originally posted by Disney Enthusiast

And I am a LIBRA too!


Count me in, too! :) Balancing scales people, unite!


When our son was 2, he had real control issues (he's seven now and, oh wait... come to think of it, he STILL has those issues! :rolleyes: ) Anyhoooo, I had read in one of those countless parenting books that we should let him FEEL as if he was making the choices by giving him 2 simple options and letting him pick. THe key is to clearly state the 2 choices, then repeat again in brief as needed until he "sees" the ball is in his court and he gets to choose his destiny. It sounds a bit like a broken record (Ok, Ryan... you can either watch TV and then go straight to bed, or go to bed now and get a story... TV then bed, or a story, then bed... TV then bed, or story, then bed... TV then bed, or story, then bed... bwaaak, Mommy wanna cracker....") But it was amazing -- you could actually see a near-tantrum suddenly shift gears as he realized, Hey, everyone is waiting for ME to make the decison... I HAVE THE POWER! On about the 3rd repetition of his choices, his scowl would give way to this enlightened half-grin and he would actually let out a giggle sometimes, like he had just discovered a delicious secret! Too cute.

So there we stood in WDW and ds decides to get rebellious...borderline snit-fit and now refuses to budge. I call upon my "infinite parenting training" (translation -- book-reading control freak) and calmy repeated to our son, "Ryan, you can either walk beside us, or you may ride in the stroller... Walk with us, or ride sitting down in the stroller... Walk, or ride... Walk or ride..." Long pause. So I get down at the 2-foot level.

"Ryan, walk, or ride. Walk (as I wave one hand at the pavement)... Or Ride (motioning to his MK rented chariot). So... what do you want? Walk... or Ride?"

"Ummmmmm... says Ryan, "I tinkkkkkk..."

"Yes?" I respond, thinking CUT TO THE CHASE, kiddo!

"Ummmm, I tink I wannnnnnnt......" says Ryan, finger aside his cheek....

"Yesssssssss?!?!" :hyper:

"I tink I wannnnt....... :scratchin

......a meatstick."

In the relative scheme of things, a Slim Jim seemed like a small price to pay for (WD)World Peace. So with "meatstick" in hand, he climbed in the stroller on his own accord and we proceeded.

As you said, sometimes, ya gotta let them make their OWN choices... not just the limited ones we parents want to impose! Their idea might actually be really simple... (and occasionally tasty too!)

Disney Enthusiast
02-18-2004, 02:23 PM
LOL!:rotfl:

You are such a hoot! I can't even respond to that last post you made because I will not be able to control my laughter. You must start writing some of these episodes down on paper because we can all relate to what you are describing, only you are so eloquent about it. Have you ever read the book, "Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy"? That was such a funny book and had chapter titles like, "My wife has been abducted by an alien" and other such snappy titles. I get the same sort of feeling when I read your excerpts. You should write a Girlfriends' Guide to Parenting. I am sure we could all learn a lot from your insight, and get a lot of laughs out of it too!!! :laughing:

I'm going to be looking for your posts now no matter what thread they are on, just to get some more of those fabulous stories! ;)

pklein09
02-18-2004, 03:40 PM
Great report!!! We're going for the first time to BWV in December - we own there and VWL. I can't wait to see the resort - I keep hearing so many good things!!!

Disney Enthusiast
02-18-2004, 05:14 PM
pklein09: Thanks for saying so! I hope you have a wonderful first trip to BWV and will be looking forward to your posts! So glad to meet ya! :wave2:

Degli
02-19-2004, 07:26 AM
Hello Disney Enthusiast,
I think I remember one of your first threads where you told us about getting your husband to agree on DVC. Coming from a husband with a family owned business and one "real" week off a year, it's difficult to get him to consider buying in. Your thread sounded like us. Once I get him there he always enjoys it. Well, with one or two or three calls in to work during our stay. I remember our last trip where his Nextel was chirping while we were waiting to get on a ride at MK. Aaaah! Our children are still young and I want to travel to Disney as often as I can before they grow up. I don't know, maybe I'm spoiled, but that's how I see life. What can I do to persuade him? Thanks!

Terry S
02-19-2004, 08:05 AM
I have been ill and unable to read the DIS for a few days and missed this post. I really enjoyed reading your trip report. It acutally brought me to tears. I remember reading your posts before hand and am glad you had a great trip.

Disney Enthusiast
02-19-2004, 10:05 AM
Degli: It was so nice of you to check back w/ me. I was the one who said it was super difficult getting my husband to go on vacation! We were looking at 1 wk every 2 yrs (I am not kidding) and finally worked him up to 10 days every 2 yrs. This year, because I had a baby, he was going to wait til next year which would've been 3 yrs, so you can imagine how much I wanted to take this trip 2 wks ago. We bought an add-on and had points to use right away and therefore we went on vacation. My DH's cell goes off all the time too. He was filming my son's first ride on a Merry-go-Round and his phone rang and he put the camera down and answered his phone as we went round and round. He never did get the shot. I have to try very hard to not get upset w/ him. I mean I get so much out of the family business and I do count my blessings. I am a stay at home mom doing the business acctg and payroll from the home den (I worked business office until my son started walking and picking up phones.... now w/ 2 kids, 1 mobile, it's impossible to go into the office), I do not have to put my kids in daycare, I have a wonderful home, and I get to go to WDW every once in a while. I really can't complain. And yet when that phone rings, I still must take a deep breath and hold back my anger.

But anyway.... back to the point. I used the financial aspect on him... showing that we'd break even in 4 to 5 yrs. I printed up the free quotes on the Disney website for just a villa (no tickets), then compared that w/ the minimum 150 pts cost and proved that we were getting a savings by going w/ DVC. I sent the reports w/ him on a slow day at work and said, "If you are looking for something to read while backing up the computers, read this." And he did. I also worked on him regarding the family issues. I remember standing by our marina gate waiting for him to arrive so I could open the private gate for him and he could go on a weekend trip w/ us... he was 4 hrs late because of work. Or when I made him a dinner at college and had to reheat it 4 times for 2 hours because he was late from work. I explained that although I have been very understanding and forgiving in the past, I will not be now that we have children. We waited 10 yrs of marriage (15 altogether) to have kids and we made sure that this was a "good" time to do so. We had enough $ in the bank, I could stay home to raise them, and we would still be comfortable and make ends meet. So I showed him that now is the time to back away a bit from the business, just a little bit, to enjoy his children. He is actually not a workaholic, he just wants to make sure his bills are paid and that he is providing for his family the best he can. He doesn't want to leave us stranded w/ debt up to our ears. So he is working w/ a good heart and I can't fault him for that. I just got to him by explaining how his son especially (Caroline is too young at this point) adores him and would much rather have a Daddy at home to wrestle and play with than money in the bank. Yes, we need money to pay the bills, but there is balance one must strive to acheive. With DVC, we are getting that balance because we are guaranteed that 1 to 2 wks a year are spent as quality time w/ the family. He still can't come home by 5 every night but tries desperately to get home before bedtime to tuck Tristan in bed and kiss him goodnight. And then he is all ours on those vacations. It's a start, much better than it was. Tristan is not a baby anymore and we had to do something. My DH used to say, "He's a baby and has no idea I'm not home." But now Tristan asks for his Daddy and misses him dearly. I told my DH that he needs to enjoy his kids because when they get older and want to spend time w/ friends and not us, it'll be too late and he'll be so sorry he missed it. And that just clicked for him. We knew that if we could only get away for 1 time a year, WDW offers the best possible scenario for us. It has boating, swimming, parks, nice dining, friendly employees, etc. And it's kid friendly. With young children, that is a must have. If he wants to work all the time once the children are grown, then so be it, but now I insisted he slow down. Life is too short and we have no idea if any of us will be around next year. All of us HAVE to enjoy the fruits of our labor and our families in the present. None of us know how much time we have to do so.

I hope you are able to get your DH to join DVC. It really is a great deal! In a previous post I mentioned how my DH only called back a few times the entire 8 days and that is because we were having such terrible ice storms back home and his construction co. takes care of snow and ice removal in the winter time and he was making sure the people in charge were taking care of the customers and things were running smoothly. When he hung up the phone, he was all ours again. And he really was thrilled w/ his/our decision. He mentioned several times that this was the way to visit WDW and that he was so glad we had the means to buy DVC and get this ball rolling while the kids and we are still young. We'll be in our mid 80's when our membership runs out. And it quiets me from having to push all the time since I already have the next trip booked. I can relax and just look forward to the next time. This was a wonderful gift to his family. And it's only because he has worked so hard that he was able to give this to us. So I thank his business every day for being so good to us.

I would let your DH know that you know how hard he must work to provide for the family and that you appreciate that. I would also show him that he must take some time off to enjoy his family and his life. When he is 70 yrs old, w/ lots to show for his hard work, he will be remembering the times he missed w/ his kids and wife because he was on the job. And he'll wish he could go back to those times, when the kids still wanted held and cuddled. Neither the kids, nor you, are getting any younger. We only have so much time on this Earth..... why not enjoy some of it while we're here? :D

Keep trying Degli. I hope you are successful no matter how you approach the issue. And I thank you again for getting in touch and reminding me of our previous chat. I so hope I get to know you better and witness the day you become a member yourself. I'd love to send you your very own "Welcome Home"! :wave:

Terry S: It was so great hearing from you. I am soooo sorry you've been ill and hope you are on the upswing. I am hoping we brought you to tears via laughter and not via our lengths of posts or anything. :) Thanks for taking the time to check out my trip report and the marvelous responses and experiences the subsequent posters added to it later. Most of them made me feel really great that others had good experiences as well, and some of them brought me to tears as well w/ the funny situations others have gone thru. It makes me feel as though I am not the only struggling mother out there. I guess it is a small world afterall!!! I hope you drop by when you see me posting in the future and I will try to do the same when I see your posts. I always love hearing from you.

I hope you feel better very soon!

DeDixie
02-19-2004, 12:49 PM
You wrote many of our feelings about BWV so eloquently. BWV also fits your needs as your children grow, ours are now 10 and 13 and we love the BWV more and more.

We love the flexibility of DVC, in Oct just my DD (13) and I went for 4N staying in a studio. This was her 13th birthday present. We had annual passes, so it was a very reasonably priced trip. We would have never done that without DVC. What a great time we had!!

DeDixie

Degli
02-19-2004, 02:21 PM
I quess I do sound like a complainer sometimes. I am lucky to be able to stay home with my 2 children also. They are a bit older than yours and have been to Disney 2 times in the past 3 years. We own a second home at the beach and with my DH's 1 week off a year this is where he feels we should always spend it. I think that he works too hard for this to be our only vacation. The kids will be grown and won't want to spend there vacation at Disney with there parents then. How uncool is that. So i'll be pushing for the DVC until he divorces me. Hope he sees the light because I'm not giving in on this one. Thanks for responding! I can't wait for my own "welcome home"

Disney Enthusiast
02-19-2004, 03:13 PM
DeDixie: Thanks so much for sharing your experience w/ DVC. I too think that we will be more spontaneous now that we are members. In fact, the last trip was only planned a month in advance. And we also feel the DVC will grow as our family grows. Then we'll be doing Disney Quest more or the roller coasters more. And when the kids leave home..... now that is when the real fun starts!!! :laughing: Please keep in touch.

Degli: I certainly did not mean to imply that you were complaining. I thought the total opposite and was just saying what I am thinking about all the time when I get frustrated w/ my dear hubby. I can always calm myself by remembering how good I have it. So keep working on him. He'll come around eventually, or will get so tired and just give in to you. Heck, he's smart and loving or you wouldn't have married him, so there's hope there. And he'll see the light when the time is right for your family. You can just help nudge him a bit. Remember the saying from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding"....... "The man may be the head of the household, but the woman is the neck and she can turn the head any which way she wants!" The wife can be very persuasive! So keep trying and I am positive I'll be wishing you a "Welcome Home" in the future. Keep in touch to let us all know how the debate is coming along. :wave2:

PS My DH has to play Devil's Advocate all the time or we'll just buy buy buy. So he made me prove that DVC was a winning choice to him. So go ahead and prove it to your DH. It's really not that hard!!! LOL! Good Luck! :tongue:

OneMoreTry
02-19-2004, 09:42 PM
We will be staying at BWV for the first time in May with our 5 kids. I'm looking forward to being close to the bakery and alll the restaurants and the flower and garden show and Star Wars festival and Mission Space and I could go on.

Thanks for the report. For a moment I was there with you and I know our trip will be every bit as great! It always is. (DVC is the only way our family can do WDW and stay together.)

Disney Enthusiast
02-20-2004, 07:05 AM
OneMoreTry: WOW!!! 5 kids! I was a teacher in my past life and always managed a classroom like clockwork. Then I had 2 kids myself and found out how tough it is to be a mom. It is a 100 x harder than being a teacher and goes 24/7. My heart goes out to you.

I hope you have a marvelous time in WDW in May! You do have so many choices regarding restaurants and such, but choosing is so much fun. Please let us all know how your trip went.

Thanks for posting me and sharing your thoughts. I'm so glad you felt you could relate to some of the stories we told in this thread. I hope you keep in touch and we get to chat again soon. ::yes::

Degli
02-20-2004, 07:27 AM
Yes May is great at WDW. Perfect weather and crowds were low. We went last May and got to see the Star Wars weekends. That was fun. My DS absolutely loves Star Wars and my daughter who was 4 at the time actually had her picture taken with Darth Vader! Not afraid at all. What a combination, Star Wars and Disney! Best of both worlds.

Disney Enthusiast, Ill be working on my hubby for the DVC. You seem to be where I want to be real soon. Just to know that a Disney trip is somewhere on the horizon gives you something to look forward to in our busy lives. Do you plan on going every year or every other year? I can see us saying every other but from what I'm hearing from fellow DVC'ers it turns into every year real fast.
When you stayed, did not having fresh towels every day and no daily maid service become a problem at any point? How often did you utilize the washing machine? We have always stayed in a regular hotel room and I wonder if my hubby will balk at this? I can here him saying "we payed how much for this and we don't even get fresh towels everyday?" He's spoiled, what can I say.
How about transportation? Did you wish that you had rented a car? We have been to WDW twice and except for the ferry to the MK the transpotation was mediocre. Too many stops and getting to DTD was awful from WL.
Oh well, can't wait for that welcome home!

gopherit
02-20-2004, 08:34 AM
Originally posted by Degli
Do you plan on going every year or every other year? I can see us saying every other but from what I'm hearing from fellow DVC'ers it turns into every year real fast.


Well, then I guess our family is in the minority, because we do the every-other-year routine fairly well! Our schedules (and logistics from WDW) don't really permit short, frequent trips. THat's not to say I wouldn't LOVE to go more often, but then again -- I love our long semi-annual trips, too! We usually go for 2 weeks every other year. We drive down (just can't swing 5 plane tickets, and at our airport, one of the connections would be on an 18 seat plane. Ugh. Nearest LARGE airport to allow for direct flight would be 2 hrs drive. Double Ugh.)

My DH is not a "vacationer" -- yet he loves WDW. THere's just something there for everyone. In our case, it helped too that DH is not a real "deluxe accommodations" kind of guy. Don't get me wrong -- he wants quality, DEFINITELY -- but the big frills are not him (if you gave him the choice between room service and my cooking, God bless 'im, he would choose my cooking. Give him the choice between daily housekeeping and a washer/dryer in the room, he'll go for the washer/dryer, hands down. More praactical, he would say -- with the washer/dryer you could get your towels as clean as you want, whenever you want, along with all your clothes, to boot.) So in those regards, DVC really suited him well. THis is not to say DVC accommodations are not "deluxe" -- they are -- but in less of a "turn-down service" way and more of a practical amenities way.

We did not do DVC as an investment in money -- we did it as in investment in time. It assures us that at least once every other year, we will get together as a family somewhere OTHER THAN extended families' homes. (I should note we always bring extra family along for at least part of our trips to join in the fun). And time is more precious than money. Money can be banked, borrowed, won and lost. TIme is much more fixed and to a great extent out of our control. The only way to preserve time is to turn it into a memory -- and if it's a good memory, then it will surely grow in value and last forever. You might say we bought DVC to "save time"!

Good luck in finding the right vacation "investment" for your family! ANd if DVC is the right choice, then I hope a big "welcome home" is in your very near future!

Disney Enthusiast
02-21-2004, 12:09 PM
Hi Degli: I am sorry it took me so long to get back to you. My DG 95 yrs old (looks like she's 70) went into the emergency room w/ an intestinal blockage and they found heart trouble. I drove to visit her yesterday w/ Baby Girl thinking the baby would be better than flowers for her. And she was. My grandmother was ecstatic to see us and doing great. Because she is so energetic and healthy, the Docs were able to put her on meds thru an IV and are watching her closely.

Now to your questions. We were visiting WDW once every 2 yrs since we've been married and usually stayed at a Deluxe resort. We checked into DVC a couple times and took the tour feeling we would buy enough pts and bank and borrow to visit once every 2 yrs as we have in the past. We were looking at 150 pts, using 300 every 2 yrs. When we bought we upped it a bit to 200 pts so we could stay in a 1 br. And that is what we bought. After speaking to family and friends we came to the conclusion that we wanted to start going every year rather than wait so long for each vacation making us go like commandos to see everything. So 2 months later, we bought another 100. Definitely get in where you can. It doesn't matter as long as you own the min of 150. Once you are in, then DVC sells itself and your DH will be saying, "Honey, maybe we need a few extra pts to stay those extra couple days." Or, "Maybe we should go again this year rather than skipping it." Until he gets to that point though, you can always use cash for the extra couple nights on the DVC discount which is what we did this past trip where we only had 200 pts and they only had a 1 br to offer using more than 200 pts. I wanted to stay 8 nights and so bought the extra 2 nights. I wouldn't want to do that indefinitely, but at least you are in! You will prob. get the add-on bug and buy more pts later, but I wouldn't worry about that now. And you may not... being like gopherit and going every other year which is still better than not being a part of DVC. So you can't go wrong. I went from dragging my DH away from his work kicking and screaming, to adding on in less than 2 mos. So we took the plunge big time. But when my DH was contemplating the thought of buying more, I got him to say "yes", and literally ran to the phone to call my agent before he could change his mind. So he is not normally like this and I had to take advantage of his good spirits (because of the holidays maybe?).

Did we miss not having HK every day? Certainly not. We have a very tidy and clean house and don't have HK here (not that I wouldn't want it mind you). We use the same towels to dry at least 3 days in a row before switching and washing, so why not while on vacation? Plus, I would rather wipe over the counters and hang up the towels rather than have a stranger coming in to clean up after me. I find myself using the "Do not disturb" sign more often than not for naps and privacy anyway, so DVC works out well for me. I knew when they were coming, I left a tip for them on that day, and we headed out for fun. One day was not a big deal for me. But every day, would be more like a nuisance trying to get our butts out of there before they started and hoping not to run into them when I come back from the pool to shower, change a diaper, get a bottle or nap.

As far as the Washer and Dryer.... I used those a LOT. I may not have used it as much before kids, but now it is a Godsend. For example, it drizzled a bit the first few days and we were able to DRY our wet, chilly clothes. Also, I got soiled twice from birds...YUCK! I was wearing a white T-shirt the one time and I washed it when I got back. You can pack so much less and wear things over again after a washing. Plus, my DD, as adorable and sweet as she is, leaked a couple times and I had to wash her clothes before the stains set in. Her Baby Bunting (the warm thingy you place in their carrier which zips up around them) got dirty and I threw that in the washer and it was ready for the return trip back to PA. It still amazes me how much clothing little ones go thru. You need to pack 3x the amount of clothes for them than you do a grown adult. And ALWAYS have a change of clothes in case of leakage. Who would've thunk! So we must have done 5 or 6 loads at least. I brought my own detergent, although they provided enough for 4 loads and I could have bought more in the general store.

Transportation? I go back and forth w/ that issue. I love renting a car, and the several times we did so, we just drove right up to the gates and parked and walked in to the parks. It is so easy to get around WDW w/ a car.... the signage is really good. It's really great when visiting DTD and BB and restaurants at other resorts. This time, we decided on the adventure to save $. So we didn't rent. We still had a great time and just had to plan a bit more. If you are not going grocery shopping, Mears transportation is wonderful. They pick you up at the airport and drive you right to the resort entrance. We waited only 15 min to catch the van, so we would definitely do that again. We had difficulty getting to the monorail resorts, but we managed. I would have rathered had a car though to cut back on the time it took to reach those destinations. With 2 small kids, and knowing we were staying at SSR next time, there was no need to go to DTD or BB this time. I wanted to try out Jiko's at the AK, but there was no way w/o a car. And I would have had to bring both carseats for the kids because I don't care for the carseats the rentals provide. So I did things a bit closer to the BW, like eat at the World Showcase and such. If you try to tailor your dining out to the location where you are staying, you will do fine w/o a car. But if you want to go to the CG or Jiko's or resort hop one day, then get the car. Just make sure to get one at the airport. One trip 6 yrs back, we rented a car 1/2 way thru the trip, had to go to a hotel in Buena Vista (non Disney hotel) to pick up our rental. We waited in line for 45 min. Then we drove ourselves to the airport and found the rental agency isn't at the airport, but miles away from it. We didn't have enough time to take the car back and then get a ride back to the airport so we paid a security guard $100 to take it back for us. It was a royal pain in the neck. So definitely make sure you are renting from someone who has a lot at the airport, not a shuttle to the airport. The advertisements can be very misleading, getting you to think they have access to the airport. Well, all rentals have access, you want them to be located on airport property. So we'll prob. go back and forth with getting a car or not, but I liked the convenience of Mears and the thought of not having to drive. But I also like the convenience of driving myself 10 min, rather than walking and riding for 30-45 min to get to the Luau or Hoop de Doo, or California Grill. So it really depends on what your plans are that week.

Hope I answered some of your questions. Let me know if you are curious about anything else. I am always happy to talk w/ you about our experiences! :wave2:

Gopherit: Thanks for getting in touch w/ Degli seeing as I had trouble doing so at first! ::yes::

Degli
02-23-2004, 02:45 PM
My husband won't bend on the idea of buying right now. So, I think next time we go I'm gonna definitely rent points and stay at DVC that way. Hopefully he'll see the light. Thanks for all the helpful info. I feel like I know you somehow! It' been fun talking.

gopherit
02-23-2004, 03:17 PM
Hey Degli, as the ol' saying goes, seeing is believing! I doubt that I OR my DH would have done the "DVC dive" if it weren't for the fact that my sister owns DVC and has treated us to some fantastic stays in a 2 br at OKW! Talk about spoiled -- that was us!

When you go to rent those points, go for a 1 or 2 br... I think they are the real sellers, versus the studios!

Good Luck!

Disney Enthusiast
02-23-2004, 07:48 PM
Good point Gopherit!!!!! Seeing is believing!

It was nice talking to you too Degli. I hope you keep in touch w/ all of us here on the boards. I am sure Gopherit agrees w/ me that we'll all be interested about how you make out w/ your DH regarding DVC. And we'll want to here your trip report when you rent! Thanks so much for your questions and input. I hope we talk again soon! ::yes::