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PrncessA 08-09-2009 08:49 AM

Woooohooo!! We're going to Disney World!!!!! Can you believe it? I can't! Not until next week when I book and pay for it. Then my teddy bear of a hubby can't change his mind! This trip has been put off MANY times so I am in shock!!

This is my first pre-trip report and my first trip to Disney World! Sorry I can't stop saying it!! We're going to Disney World!!! I bring it up in nearly every conversation I have. "Yes I would love a refill, by the way we're going to Disney World!" "Yes I faxed all the paperwork this morning boss, don't forget I'm going to Disney World." I am pretty sure my DH is already tired of the words, but I keep reminding him that if we had made the plans months ahead then it would have been ALOT more. LOL

Needless to say I am excited!!!!!!! The kiddos don't know yet, and we aren't sure if we are going to tell them. DD(2) wouldn't really understand. DS(4) might but since he has never been he wouldn't really understand the excitement. I think little surprises at a time might be best. We're going on a plane, the resort, the pool and Disney World. Have I mentioned we're going to Disney World?!?!?

First let me introduce you to our little cast o' characters....

Meet: Me aka Mommy aka Sara. I am 26 and I love Disney!!! Always have always will! I run the child care at a health club so Disney is always on in one form or another. Give me old Disney movies or shows and I will happily sit and watch them for hours. When I was little I would sneak out of bed at night and turn on the Disney Channel and watch black and white reruns of MMC. Give me NEARLY any Disney Movie and I am hooked. I love me some Princess Aurora, Belle, Buzz and Mickey Mouse!!

I have never been to Disney World or on a plane so this is an adventure as well as a lifetime dream! Closest I have ever come is taking DS to Disney on Ice last year. LOL I am a little OCD about planning for Disney, but am WAY behind since the trip had been canceled and postponed. Now I have a month!

Meet: DH aka Grumpy aka Erik (37). He is not the Disney fan that I am but in our family not sure there would be room or money enough for that! LOL He loves making me and the kiddos happy and will do almost anything for us. This includes packing up and heading to Disney. Honestly I think the YouTube video I showed him w/ the family singing the Cars song did it. Brought tears to his eyes the big teddy bear! He has been to Disney once w/ his ex-wife but they did it as a day thing and he rode Small World 5 times and Space Mt. once.He doesn't remember anything else. Just for proof later on I need to add that it was HIS idea to stay at WL! I had already priced POP and he said if we are doing it do it right. LOL Don't have to tell me twice!!

Meet: DS(4) aka Little Chief aka Ethan. He is a ball of energy and the light of my life! He's a Disney Child! His first Disney love was Toy Story which he watched over and over for months it seemed. He talks along w/ the characters in Toy Story 1 &2, Wall-E, Cars, Bolt and Aladdin. He sleeps every night w/ his Woody doll and his Bolt plush. He loves Donald Duck!! He is a fantastic kid and a great big brother!

Meet: DD(2) aka Princess aka TERROR aka Lorelai, lol. She has been called Princess for so long that she literally thinks she has two names. LOL She is the only girl and knows it. She walked very early to keep up with her brother! She is a princess to the bone, very independent and very loving! She hates being reined in and is ready to go go go all the time. She is tiny so I know she is too small for some rides Ethan will ride, not sure how well that will go over. She loves any of the princess or fairies. She is gonna LOVE meeting the Princesses and be terrified of the the non-face characters most likely.

So that's the crew... a little crazy and wacky but ready to go to DISNEY!!!

The Plan (Hopefully)
ADR WishList!!!
Shopping and Waiting!
Only I Could Have Done It
Sneakers and More
YouTube and Mail
Package Arrived!
House of the Undecided
Dining Options

SilverL 08-09-2009 03:58 PM

You're staying at Wilderness Lodge? That will be fantastic, I'm sure! :woohoo:

If you're a month out, I think we'll be arriving at Pop the week after you.

Your princess is adorable!

1stvisit0909 08-09-2009 04:10 PM

yeah for you!! We had a little more time to prepare...althought not much more!

We are keeping it a secret from our kids. We aren't telling them until at least the airport! they've never flown and will be so excited! (ours are 8/4)

Its gonna be fun!!

Raecheal 08-09-2009 04:38 PM

Oh... I'm completely in!! popcorn::

trickiwoo 08-09-2009 05:06 PM

I feel your excitement!!! I'm going to WDW for my first time next month!

Your kids are so adorable!!!

I can't wait to hear more about your trip!

PrncessA 08-09-2009 09:59 PM

Thanks for the well wishes everyone!! With how overwhelmed I feel right now I need them. LOL

Setting our tentative plans:

The Plan: I'll take one 7day/6night dream stay at the Wilderness Lodge, Walt Disney World Sept. 15th-22nd please. Add the Deluxe Dining Plan and all the Character Dining we can get!:cool1: Oh and hold the humidity!

The Dates: Tentitive... All weekend I have been pricing flights for next month. Our goal is to leave anywhere between the 9th-16th. I priced Disney and as long as we leave before then our rates are the same. It would actually be cheaper to fly out the 11th, but I'm not sure if I want to arrive on a Friday.... :confused3

The Flights:
The only thing I know for sure is we are flying out of Chicago ORD since we live next door and DH has insisted on direct flights only. :scared1: Not sure what scares me more... flying with a two year old that loves to climb things and doesn't sit still or paying for checked luggage! I spent all evening trying to mentally picture fitting everything into one checked suitcase and 3 carry-ons to save $30. In the end I am no closer to deciding. Stay tuned...popcorn::

The Transportation: A Tiffany Towncar Van, DH made the decision on this as well. Sure he did... :rolleyes1 It was a close call but not having to wait for a bus or make stops, and being able to stop at Publix for the 15 things I know I will forget pushed it over the top! I think DH just wants to see someone holding his name on a card, LOL.:cool2:

The Resort: Wilderness Lodge :cloud9: Standard room. Hey if we are looking a rooftops at least they are Disney rooftops!!!

The Tickets: 6 Day Park Hoppers, no water parks the resort pool will be heaven for the kids.

Food: Yes please!! I am one of the lucky who receive pins all the time. Over the last 3 years I have gotten 10 or so of them in the mail and email, but I have never been able to use one. So in the last couple months I had deleted at least 2 pin emails.:guilty: So I called and Disney said "Come eat on us!" So we are, well at least partly. My dining pin was for DDP. We are a food family and character meals and CRT are my goal! So DxDDP it is. Paying the difference comes out to $420 for 6 nights. Stay tuned for my ADR wishlist!

Goals: This will be a kiddo oriented trip, so we are doing Dumbo or Die. LOL Our kids have never been night sleepers, they are up early and fall asleep late, even when they have long days, but they do need their naps. So early morning and late nights will be my plan w/ a long break in the middle of the day for naps and swimming.

Expectations: MAGIC & MELTDOWNS, We are realistic, we know our kids and this will be a touch and go trip.

*Disney's Pirate Adventure for Ethan
*Lorelai's First Haircut (I was saving it for Disney)
*As many Character Meals as we can fit in!

disneyscrappinjan 08-09-2009 10:56 PM

I'm in!:banana:
What a wonderful looking family. Good luck on your ADR, I have had a hard time getting what I want our next trip is Sept. 26-Oct. 4.But I did get MNSSHP ticket so I am happy!:thumbsup2. I am not sure how far from Chicago-Midway airport you are but thought I would tell you they have very reasonable flights through Southwest and they have 2 checked baggage per person FREE! Can't beat that. You are doing great on your report keep it up. I am working on 2 (in sig line) ptr., so check it out if you would like.:cool1:

PrncessA 08-10-2009 11:41 AM

Thank you Jan! I can't wait to read yours! I am so nervous about ADR's they are my biggest worry right now. As for Midway we are a little farther away but DH is doesn't want to fly out of Midway, but luggage costs might drive the bargin... How does their seating go? It's first come first serve right?

What does a normal person do when they find out they are going to Disney World but haven't booked it yet???:cool1: Not sure because the MOMENT DH suggested it 10,000 thoughts popped into my head about outfits, ADR's, plane tickets, luggage and if I need a bigger SD card for the camera.:confused3

Thursday night my poor DH innocently ask if I wanted to go to Disney World.... Friday I called and priced it out.... Saturday I bought new luggage, Buzz shirt for Ethan, Princess outfit and new Princess swimsuit for Lorelai...Saturday night, cashed in some MyPoints for Starbucks Gift Cards for airport and some Disney Movie rewards for Cars Hat & Watch and a Princess Hat & Watch... Sunday bought another luggage set to compare and contrast, new shorts for Ethan and Minnie Mouse Outfit for Lorelai... cursed that fact the the Disney Store left our mall last year! DH has even gotten into it and brought home a bag full of Disney goodies for the kids from Dollar Tree. I came close to asking him to stop at Home Depot and pick up some Mickey's!!

I have been engrossed in trying to figure out our rough schedule and ADR wish list so that as soon as I book I can start trying to get them. This is a completely intimidating thing for me, I have read for hours on it but for some reason the booking process is stil blurry. Hopefully it will click soon. LOL My OCD planning has already amazed DH as I was making notecards for all of my restraunt wishes.... should I tell him I plan on laying them out by day and rearranging them until they all fit correctly? Or that the first thing I thought of when I woke up is "I hope we get a ADR for CRT!!"?:rolleyes:

My goal is to get most of our Character meets done during meals, minus those who don't appear at meals. We have 16 meal credits and I want to eat at twice that many restraunts.... I am hoping this helps if I can't get an ADR at one or two... By the end of the trip we will be wishing we had a cow's stomachs, lol.

ADR Wishlist
Character Meals
CRT of course! My dream ADR would be for breakfast day 7 of our trip, our icing on the cake as we say good by to the World w/ MK.
Akershus Princess Breakfast (Day 3)
Garden Grill- This is probally going to be one of the first to go.... I really want to go, but the kid's really don't know Chip and Dale Epcot is full of possibilities....
1900 Park Fare- My original plan was for two meals here breakfast and dinner to experience both Character meals but I have narrowed it down to breakfast with Mary and Alice and the gang since, I hate missing Lady Tremaine and step sisters but I don't think Lorelai would really get it. My hope is to schedule this to precede with Ethan's Pirate advendture (crossing my fingers they can fit in another Pirate!)pirate:
Crystal Palace- Dinner day 2
Chef Mickey's- Breakfast 2, our first full day we have to start off with the Main Mouse!!!
Tusker House- Donald's Safari Breakfast, this might not make the cut either since hopefully we will see Donald at Chef Mickey's not sure yet..

Non-Character Meals
Sci-Fi Dine-In - DH and I love the concept of the restraunt
Biergarten- Another iffy.. DH loves German type foods, me not so much. TBD
Mama Melrose- Fantasmic Package Hopefully
Coral Reef- I have been dreaming about eating here since I was young and saw the Disney episode of Full House, LOL. I know I heard they were stopping the personal diver signs and menus... did they?
Artist Point and/or Whispering Canyon Cafe- Since we are right there maybe we take a night or morning slow and stay "home"

CS meals haven't escaped my OCD either, I have to have alternitives if the kid's breakdown and quick is what we need. Casey's Corner, Pizzafari, Cosmic Rays, Noodle Station.... the list goes on.

I would LOVE to go to California Grill and see Wishes but I don't think this will be the trip, just another reason to come back soon!

Next Up:
The Luggage Debate of 08/09 and Booking Day

SilverL 08-10-2009 12:48 PM


As far as Biergarten goes, the best thing about the World Showcases is that one person can eat in Germany and the rest of the party can eat in America if they're more picky. You could just do CS around the world and let everyone pick what type of cuisine they want.

Don't let ADRs intimidate you too much. If you've seen my PTR, you know that I FORGOT to make mine in the AM at 90 days, but I still got all of the restaurants I wanted. However, I was not trying for CRT or anything like Le Cellier. I was trying to get the Fantasmic Package at Mama Melrose, but that was unavailable, so I took a regular reservation instead.

Have a list of restaurants, dates, and time ranges at hand when you call. I scheduled one TS meal a day, so I was able to be very flexible. I asked for 6:00pm for all of my dinners, but I was prepared to accept anything from 3pm to 6pm. However, I didn't want anything after 6pm on park days so we wouldn't miss nightly events.

You can also call the dining line ahead of time and go through the automated process that directs your call just to see what it's like and then hang up when you get on hold. Then you know what's coming!

In general, most ADRs are not that hard to get if you can be flexible. For CRT, you probably should call right at 7am EST at your vacation 90 day mark. If you can't get it on that day, then call at the 90 day mark for that day you want to eat there. So if you want to eat there 3 days after you check in, call 3 days after your first 90 day mark. They release more seats at that time.

PrncessA 08-11-2009 09:48 PM

How long can a person sit on the edge of their seat? :confused3 How many times can someone make a ADR wishlist, backup wishlist and try and figure out how many different options she can use to try and get all of her ADRs?

I am about to go CRAZY! I have been waiting for 5 days now to book and I am crossing my fingers it happens tomorrow!!! I was moving funds around accounts (we don't use credit cards) and now I have to wait until tomorrow to be sure everything has settled. I hate that since we are so last minute I couldn't just pay the $200 down but the whole amount has to be paid at once.I am tempted to stay up until midnight to see if it happens then, I'm not insane doesn't everyone do that? :sad2:

Well to keep myself busy we took a little trip to the Disney Store:banana:. We had already decided to buy a few gifts at home and take them with us as "Tinkerbell" surprises. *Mental note to self... buy sparkly confetti. We picked up each of them two playsets: Toy Story 2 and Wall-E for DS and Princesses and Fairies for DD. Sunglasses were on sale so I got them each a pair: Buzz and Aurora. They had the cutest Tinkerbell shirts for me so I got one and got DH a Grumpy t-shirt. It says "Backoff!" Totally the mood he was in today so it fit him.:cutie:

Here are a few pics of the stuff we have collected over the last few days, I haven't pulled out my treasure chest yet that I have added some Disney things too throughout the year. I think I used quite a bit at Easter so I am not sure what all I have.

New Luggage of course

Dis Clothes


I am on the fence about few things for this trip.
*Autograph books... yes or no. I am leaning toward no, but I never know what will spark their interest even if it doesn't mine. I can see them getting into it, but just as easily see them finding it boring. Now that I am talking about it I am leaning more into it....:confused: Maybe I will play it safe and make one, if they don't use it no harm. Opinions?

*Pin Trading: sounds addicting! I think Ethan would enjoy this but I think it might better be saved for next trip. Any opinions/experiences on a mature 4yo pin trading?

*Epcot Passports: DH wants one too. LOL I don't think Lorelai will get it but she will want one if Ethan has one, she will like the "book" part of it. She carries small books in her Aurora purse all the time.

PrncessA 08-12-2009 08:51 AM

I BOOKED! WOOHOO! If the kiddos and DH weren't all asleep I would be pumpin' the music and dancin' around! :cool1::cool1::cool1: I have seriously thought about waking DH up and telling him everything... but I don't think it would be very magical....:sad2:

First thing this morning I jumped up and called my friend Mickey Mouse and we are going to see him in less than a month!! I am telling you the magic is happening already! I was able to book almost ALL of my first picks for ADR's!!

Confirmed Plans:

Wilderness Lodge Sept. 11th- Sept. 17th, 2009
6 Day Park Hopper Tickets
Deluxe Dining Plan

We don't plan to go to a park the day we arrive, so I only got 6 park days. If I had got 7 for the extra $10 I would have felt pressured to spend time at the park and I don't think we would ever make it to DTD! LOL

Since we are booking so late I was terrified of the ADR situation. CRT, Princess Breakfast, Fantasmic Package and Chef Mickey's was my goal.The lady who helped me w/ the ADR's had to be the sweetest in the world! She went out of her way to help me!

And the winners are.........

Cindy's Table: 9:30 Dinner on our first full day!! I searched online and she searched when I called and this was the only reservation we could find for breakfast, lunch or dinner for our entire stay. We got it!!!!!!! :dance3:

Crystal Palace: We got a early 8:05am breakfast on our first full day. This is fantastic. Our first moments in MK will be before the park becomes overcrowded!!! Plus since we have a early breakfast and late dinner leaves plenty of time to go back to the resort and relax during the afternoon!!!

Storybook Princess Breakfast: Another miracle!! 9:35am 3rd day of our trip!!

Coral Reef:
12:50pm for lunch 3rd day, am thinking about changing it since it is a little close to breakfast.

This was my favorite: 1900 Park Fare 8:05am Breakfast on our 5th day. Not only did we get the earliest ADR possible, but we had to because.....................

They had a slot available on the Pirate Cruise Adventure the same day! The cruise leaves at 9:30 and she said to be there at 9:00 or so. Great part is that since they are both at the GF she said if we weren't done eating or seeing Characters only one of us has to take Ethan to the docks. So we can continue eating. I am in heaven!!!!

The two that were not available were Chef Mickey's and the Fantasmic Package. She said Fantasmic is only showing once during our stay but to keep trying back for both.

I am so excited! Now all I have to do is book the flights. That more than anything is making me queasy w/ all their non-refundable talk. At least at Disney I hear the words, "Cancellation Period" not with the tickets. :sick: Does travel insurance cover airline ticket prices?

Next up: Airline Booking

ddstratton 08-12-2009 09:14 AM

Congrats on getting the ADR's! Sounds like some nice plans.

SilverL 08-12-2009 01:14 PM

I'm pretty sure that you can get Travel Insurance that does cover flights. However, here is another option:

Find your perfect flight, and one or two acceptable alternatives on a site like Hotwire. You can have them e-mail you alerts on that flight in case it's getting full or if the price changes, etc. Basically you can keep track of this flight you want to book but haven't yet.

You can also check the flight on SeatCounter: That will give you an idea of whether or not the flight is filling up.

With this information on hand, you can be pretty sure that there is still availability on the flight, which for me means that I don't have to purchase my tickets right away. I felt comfortable and secure in my decision to hold off. We have no travel insurance, but at this point we know unless there is a major catastrophe, we will be going on our trip. So we've booked the flight.

BTW, kudos for avoiding those credit cards! :cheer2:

sisaaliyah 08-12-2009 01:52 PM

Congrats on your trip and ADR's!! :goodvibes

Just wanted to throw into the mix (since you're contemplating the autograph book), how about doing the pressed pennies instead? Last year when we went DS was 2.5 and he loved :love: looking for the pressed penny machines and watching it work. We bought one of the pressed penny books at the parks and will take it with us on our next trip to add to it. For DS he is shy and wouldn't actually ask the characters for their was enough just to get him up there and get a picture, and I didn't want to be the one doing the asking for the autograph. Also, the pressed penny machines sometimes would be found around some of the rides DH would be on and it was something we could do while waiting for DH to ride.

Pixie dust for a GREAT trip and hope you get the other ADR's you're trying for.

PrncessA 08-12-2009 02:56 PM

The flights to MCO were filling fast so we went ahead and booked. No travel insurance yet, I have decided wether to get it or not.

Pressed pennies is a great idea!! I had completely forgot about them! Both the kids will love them! Thank you!

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