June 2011 PTR Disneymoon @ CSR *5/26* pg 2
Welcome to my very first PTR!! Let's get right to it and get to the "intro of characters"....
Ashlee, (me), 23 years old, registered nurse at a skilled nursing/rehabilitation center. I LOVE to plan things, but somehow I'm always unorganized. Been to Disney lots of times throughout my life since I was 3 years old. Love, love, love it. This is me during a mother/daughter trip in 2009 in the Mexican Pavillion, one of my favorite spots in Epcot!
Jon, 25 years old, works in biotechnology; He's a genius, very practical, and like me, a very much real-ist and not very "spirited". He's been to Disney World once with his parents around age 12-13 years old; thats the difference between his family and mine; his family goes camping almost every weekend from Memorial Day to Labor Day; mine goes to Disney 1-2x/year.
So let me preface this report by saying that it's our HONEYMOON! Yep, we're getting married one June 11, 2011 after almost 7 seven years of dating! AND we're leaving for Disney June 12th! So we (okay, mostly ME, have been planning a wedding and a Disney vaca!!)
Back to the beginning....
Jon and I knew that when we began planning our honeymoon we had always talked about going to Disney World together! So when the time came to get serious and book it, I asked him if he was SURE that's what he wanted to do- and he replied, "Of course! You'll be my little tour guide you've been so many times!". So it was settled- we're going to Disney and I couldn't be happier!! Just last year, from May 5th- May 10th my mom and I took a girls only trip to the world and I wasn't even engaged...now 13 months later, I'm going with what will then be my HUSBAND!
Booking the trip....
I think I started seriously looking at prices for our trip around Oct/Nov; I REALLY REALLY REALLY wanted to stay at a Deluxe Resort- particularly the Beach Club; I've stayed there once when I was 18 and that experience was AMAZING. Unfortunately, all of the three PIN codes that I've received (yep, 3!!) were all for dates only good through June 4th...BOO! At one point, I asked DF if we could change our wedding date to accommodate our PIN code...he thought I was crazy and since the venue, etc. had already been booked; we agreed that no it really wasn't feesable to change the date (first clue we should've eloped....)
So I started getting quotes...from the Walt Disney World website itself, AAA, and a local travel agent that my family always uses to book trips. Basically AAA gave us a great rate (2774 for June 12th-June 19th, 6 day PH, + Water Parks, + DDP, 7 nights @ CSR) but I still have an e-mail out to our local TA; she gave us a quote higher then AAA, so I replied back that I really wanted to book through her could she beat AAA's price..and SHE DID! So the next day after making sure this is what we really wanted to do ($$ wise), I called our TA at work and left a deposit hoping that new discounts or deals would be released before April when we need to pay in full the rest of the trip.
I was SO excited to be staying at CSR again, my fav. moderate, since I knew we didnt' want a Value Resort and couldn't afford a Deluxe, we also considered Swan or Dolphin since I get a nurse discount- but you can't get the DDP or use ME while staying there, so that was out the door for us.
We also had our TA book us flights. We live on the north shore of Boston but are orignally from northern NH and are getting marred 6/11/11 in northern ME. I took it upon myself (see, planning freak) to check out the southwest website and see what flights were available for 6/12 out of Manchester NH & Logan. We ultimately decided to go with MHT which is where I've always flown out of and where Jon flew once..that's it he's only flown once!! (some people's kids....:) )
Since originally Jon wanted to drive to Disney (thank GOODNESS he talked himself out of that!) I like to think of the day at work when I got a text and he informed me he wanted to as one of the best days of my life (dramatic, yes)- YAYAYAYAY!! AND his parents said that wanted to pay for our plane tickets!! YES things were looking up!! We (again, mostly me!) looked into flight times seriously now- It's going to be a 4 1/2 hr drive from the hotel we're staying at our wedding night (also the venue) to the airport. This puts a little damper on things...so we (ok, really, me) decided that we needed a straight through flight, because Jon is very nervous about flying and as long as I get him on the place, coming home is optional, right?? haha, I wish! So I had our TA book use our flight down to leave MHT at 5:35pm which seems late, I know- but think of it this way- we leave Maine at 9am the morning after our wedding (exhausted, I'm sure), drive 4 1/2 hrs, accounting for time for pee breaks, Dunkin Donut stops, plan for time to try and figure out where to park at the airport b/c we've never done that, and be inside the airport for 2:30pm.
Up next...it's that infamous 180 day mark and ADR's need to be made! Stay tuned!:)
Table of Contents:
ADR's Are Booked!
Planning, Planning & More Planning
Milestones To Remember
My Travel Agent Is Starting To Get To Me...
June 2011 DisneyMoon...PICS ADDED 3/18/11!
ADR's Are Booked!
One of the most exciting part of planning our trip has been our ADR's! DF doesn't have any comments, opinions, or concerns about where we eat- again, it's up to me (and I love it!). So when our 180 day mark approached us I have most Ts options that I wanted written down and ready to be booked. I called that night and got all the ADR's I wanted! 50's Prime Time, Biergarten, San Angel Inn, and Liberty Tree Tavern.
However, as I finally figured out what days had EMH, what time all the parades are, I change some things around and added some. We're now booked for the following (details on what time/day coming soon): Les Chefs de France, San Angel Inn, Biergarten, Liberty Tree Tavern, & (drumroll please...) California Grille! I chose Biergarten because I know it's a sure thing for me and pretty sure (95%) that my DF will love it. 50's Prime Time I went to once with my mom and a friend for just dessert but I've heard great things about the restaurant (excited for the fried chicken!), Liberty Tree Tavern I've never tried but DF is a BIG eater so any all you can eat meals will be great, Les Chefs de France I chose for us because it sounds very romantic and my parents said their lunch there was great two years ago, San Angel Inn I ate at when I was 16 and was DELICIOUS! Plus, the environment is very romantic. California Grille I chose for us because it, also, seems romantic (seems to be a trend....?) and because we had two TS credits to use I couldn't decide what to do with.[/COLOR]
I'm subscribing! My fiance and I are also going to Disney World for our honeymoon in September. We have been together for 7 years, too! :goodvibes: We are also staying at the CSR. This will be my first time at a moderate and my husband to be's first time staying on Disney property. I'm glad it is your favorite moderate. That makes me feel good that we chose it. I'm excited to hear more as your plans develop.:)
Yay welcome Disneymoon23! There are a lot of similarities between us! Good luck with your planning...I'll be wandering my way over to your PTR soon!:dance3:
We are going at the same time! Happy Planning!!!!!:banana:
Planning, Planning, Planning...
Of course, all of this is subject to change and not happen at all. But I do have an idea of what we will be doing each day, please feel free to mention things I overlooked, don't seem to know about, etc!
June 12th (Sunday)- Basically, nothing! Ok, maybe not nothing, but really, not much. Our flight lands at 8:30pm in Orlando and we decided to take ME even tho I usually take *********** Transportation when I go with my family- we're on our own now and every dollar counts! We're going to get our bags ourself, we'll just have our carry on, and a rolling suitcase each. We'll probably get something "to go" (for dinner) at the airport in NH for the plane ride even if we aren't hungry then we may be at some point during the flight. We're using garden grocer for the first time so we probably won't even get anything at the Pepper Market that night just snack on what we ordered from GG; however, we still have 1 TS, 1 CC and 1 SC for that "day". I'm hoping we get a room in the Casitas, preferably a water view but we didn't request; either way, chances are we won't be loooking out at the water very much anyway! We're not going to be doing online check-in.
June 13th (Monday)- Besides being exhausted from a previous day of travel we're going to be EXTRA tired from our wedding the night before THAT! So our (ugh..I mean my) plan is put the do not disturb sign on the door and sleep as long as we can- although I must admit, I'm not sure how much I'll be able to sleep in! But not having our to get up for work or get up to let our dog out (who i will miss very very very very very very much during this time; thank goodness he has such great grandparents that took the week off from work to babysit!) I'm hoping to get some real good sleep! I'm guessing I'll be the first awake, in which case I'll probably won't be able to sit still so I'll probably end up waking DF if he sleeps past 10:30am. Then we're just going to eat a quick breakfast from the food we ordered from GG and then head to the pool. Probably just the "quiet pool" because it's just that- QUIET. Probably do lunch at the Pepper Market (I absolutely LOVE it there and I'm sure DF will too) and then mozy around the resort. We have dinner reservations at Les Chefs de France at 6pm that night, so we'll probably head over to Epcot around 3 or 4, look at some attractions at world showcase as we make our way to France! After dinner we'll probably stick around world showcase, catch the Illuminations and slowly make our way back to the resort. Probably go for another swim or hot tub before bed time.
June 14th (Tuesday)- MK has EMH (morning) today but we're probably going to avoid that; Most likely we'll be out of the hotel room by 10am and may end up heading to AK. DF has never been; we'll probably stick around AK until 2 or 3; we need to be at Epcot or reservations at San Angel Inn at 5pm and we're taking Disney transportation. Epcot has EMH until midnight so instead of catching Illuminatios we'll probably do a lot of the attractions in futureworld as well as wander around the world showcase...and lots of shopping too of course!
June 15th (Wednesday)- Since we have water park tickets, I think we may head over to Typhoon Lagoon or Blizzard Beach today in the morning then off to MK we'll go for dinner at 5pm at Liberty Tree Tavern; neither of us have eaten there, so we're pretty excited!
June 16th (Thursday)- Plan on either finishing up anything at AK we wanted to do, then head over to 50's Prime Time Cafe for dinner at 6:25pm (NOT 6:15 or 6:30; 6:25!). If we get to HS early enough we'll see some attractions, shop, etc. until dinner then after we eat wander our way through streets of America then to Fantasmic. Not sure if we're willing to wait an hour for good seats or just take a chance and go to the theater area as the show is due to start and hope to find two seats. We'll see...I know in the past I've gone an hour, 30 minutes before.
June 17th (Friday)- Not sure what parks we'll be doing in the morning, maybe finishing up DHS? All I do know is that we're trying California Grille for the first time and I couldn't be more excited! I'm usually hesitant to try a 2TS credit meal because I feel like we aren't getting a good deal but we had an "extra" Ts since we get one for the day we arrive but won't be using is that day/night. Our reservations are at 9:25pm at CG I made it purposely for that time so that we can see the fireworks at MK! The only concern that I do have is eating so late, but I'm sure we'll survive :) Then MK is open until...drum roll...2 am with EMH!! Woot Woot! I figure this is going to be perfect for us to re do our fav rides, attractions, etc with some low crowds since most people with small children probably won't be there at that time. We may head over to MK before our reservations, walk or take monorail over to Contemporary then go back to MK; we'll see how we feel.
June 18th (Saturday)- Last full day. BOO!! DHS has EMH (morning) we may or may not take advantage of those; no real plans; only plan is to eat at Biergarten at noon for lunch and I am also VERY excited to do this I've been multiple times and love it here! Can't wait to walk around Epcot again, do Soarin' just one (okay, maybe 4) more time, test track, I love the ride in Norway, maybe a churro, head over to the Boardwalk if we want. Need to remind self to get our boarding passes printing off from Guest Services at some point today- we paid an extra $20 for "Early Bird Check In" through Southwest- never used it before, does anyone know how it works? I know that you dont have to "Race" to get a good "letter" with this...hm, note to self: look
June 19th (Sunday)- Leaving today. Double BOO!! Our flight leaves MCO at 1:30pm so I'm guessing ME will pick us up around 10 or 10:30? Does that sound like a good estimate?? If we play our cards right we'll still have one counter service left so I would like for us to eat breakfast at the Pepper Market "one last time". Probably need to be awake by 8am if we don't pack the night before, be at the Pepper Market for 9; back to the room to grab our bags and then check out. How sad.
Phew, I'm exhausted. :)
I HAVE to make an addendum to my latest post! Since we got out tax returns back last week, DF and I decided we would pay our trip in full this week. So when I got home today I called our travel agent to pay the amt in full- she took our info that that was it. When DF got home for some reason I had the urge to check my e-mail..and guess what??
WE GOT A PIN FOR FREE DINING DURING OUR STAY!!!!!!!
I was so excited I couldn't control myself! I immediately call Disney directly since the email said, "for most night 6/3-813/11". All other 3 PIN's I've received were for 40% off deluxe, 35% mod's only through June 14th- we're staying June 12th-June 19th so it didn't make it worth it for us since our TA is charging us the same as if we booked through AAA. The CM I talked to said that were actually no black out dates for that PIN, even tho I kept saying, but it says, "MOST" not "ALL" nights 6/3/11-8/13/11! Unfortunately she couldn't apply it to our stay our TA would have to do it. So I immediately called my TA figuring they'd be close since it was close to 7pm; nope she was there! And she said that she would call Disney and apply it for us! Woot woot! Unfortunately the PIN is for Quick Service Dining Only but the CM said we can upgrade to the Plus Dining for $14/day...so we're not spending $196 total for 2 people, 7 days of plus dining! Woot Woot! Happy March 1st to us!!
Milestones I Need To Remember
All I have to say is thank goodness tomorrow is Friday! I am so ready for this week to be OVER! Between being sick for the third week in a row, and now I'm on antibiotics for ten days and catching up on "end of month" stuff at work I need a weekend off!
Of course to help relax at night what do I do? Plan our Disney trip, of course!
Things To Do/Milestones During The Countdown
Right now we're at our 101 day mark!! Saturday = Double Digits!! We don't really have a legit countdown going- but we do have a "wedding website" through The Knot.com and it counts down days to your wedding- so I check it frequently and add one day since we're leaving the day after we get married. This part is probably more for me then anyone else's entertainment but I hope you all can enjoy it, give me tips, etc. while I think of things I need to do before we go! Also, I should mention that not only am I planning a wedding for June 11th, leaving for Disney June 12th, but my brothers and I are also planning a surprise 25th Wedding Anniversary for our parents for May 7th. Yeah...I'm going to need to make lots of lists so I don't forget anything!!
April 11th- Two month mark! Finish deciding what we want from Garden Grocer and place order.
May 16th- Parents anniversary party was two weekends ago; time to get serious about our trip. Plan on calling Disney if we haven't received our Mickey Mail! Do you think this is too soon?
May 21st- Going to make a list of all the things I need to buy at our local Target or Wal Mart; i.e. sunscreen, mini fans/misters, waterproof money holder, chapstick, freezer bags to pur toiletries in, etc. Also, look into how much parking is going to cost at the airport, where we actually can park (i.e. what lots, etc)
June 4th- I'm sure I'll start packing WAY before this but, should the even arise that I don't, must start/finish packing THIS WEEKEND. Because the next work week is only 3 1/2 days for us and we're going to be crazy busy with wedding stuff. We most likely wont need shorts or tanks during this week, and I won't need any sundresses, bathing suits, etc. all will need to be packed. As for toothbrushes, toiletries, undergarments, etc. we will be packing an overnight bag for our wedding night at the Inn where we're staying the night before we leave for Disney so thats where those will go and then we'll shove, ugh, I mean neatly place, those things in our suitcases before leave for the airport..
June 5th- make sure I get my wedding dress from the shop I got it at, pack overnight bag for the wedding night. Find phone # for resort, restaurants we have ADR's at and put it my cell.
June 8th- Df's best friend who we haven't seen in a year and a half and 6 month old baby (at the time)/our God daughter who we've only met via Facebook photos are flying in from Utah (best friend is in the wedding); need to pick them up, not sure if they'e going to be flying in to Manchester NH or to Logan; Logan is only 20 min away from our place, and MHT is 45 minutes; hoping that he'll be flying in after 5 or 6 so both of us can go to help with bags, the baby, etc. but if not DF can go alone to get them; I can't really leave work too early because I'm the only one that does my job at my work (does that make sense) and altho my asst will be stepping up while I'm gone, I still need to make sure everything is all set up. Also, need to pack up our dog for a week at Grammy & Grandpy's.
June 9th- Last day of work for me, DF is probably going to take today off to do some last minute things such as...pick up tuxes, finish packing, loading the car with ALL of our stuff (and by all I mean- me, DF, DF's best friend, best friends baby, and our 12 lb dog) for the drive tomorrow. I'll be out of work between noon and 2pm; I'm considering asking MY BFF to drive 3 1/2 hrs from NH to MA to help me with last minute things, maybe pack my stuff in her car and let the boys take my car the next day to Maine.
June 10th- Day before our wedding and 2 days before we land in Disney! I need to get Disney off the brain for a little to focus on the wedding! Both DF and I are off from work today. We need to be in Maine for 3pm wedding rehearsal; a 4 1/2 hour drive from our place. Really need to be in Maine at 1:30 to drop the dog off at DF's parents who will be joining us later for rehearsal, check in to our room at the Inn. Also we need to stop 45 min into the drive to pick up our wedding cake, yeah I'm going to be STRESSED. We're driving our own wedding cake for 3hrs and 15 minutes in an SUV with two grown men, a baby, a dog and me, a petite little girl but still when I"m stressed... We absolutely, 100%, no questions asked, HAVE to leave our place by 8:30am on the 10th- no matter how late the boys stay up playing NBA live on Xobx, no matter what, we HAVE TO. That means everyone in the car, already packed, restrained in the seat, must go. I'm assuming me and the baby and the dog will be in the back of my SUV- thats fine with me, only we HAVE to make room for the cake somewhere and the back will be filled with both of our suitcases for the 7 days at Disney, each of our overnight bags for the wedding, whatever best friend and baby have for their week in NH, and our dog's week at Grammy & Grandpy's. This really doesn't leave much time for diaper changes, or pee stops along the ride- so I hope no one drinks too much. Inviting my BFF to come down on the 9th is looking better and better since I can at least put my bags and dress in her car but I will get nervous incase the boys veer off the path...
June 11th- WEDDING DAY!! Need to remind self to have someone print off our boarding passes for us that evening!
Also...if anyone could please tell me how to post pics in here I'd love that! Until next time...
Free Dining Pin Gone Wrong; Customize T-Shirts?
97 days til Disney!! Technically, since it's 9pm, it's 96 days and 3 hours; sounds much better then 97.
So you all are aware by now, that we received a pin code for free dining last week; unfortunately, to make a long story short, we're unable to use it. Why you may ask?
You see...I called last week to pay off the remaining balance of our trip. Then, literally one hour later, I got a PIN in my e-mail for free dining and it was good for our stay! I called the travel agent back, gave her the PIN, and said no problem. Well, the next day I got a message on my phone to call the travel agent back. Unfortunately, I was ill and sent home from work, had a doctor appointment, so I did not call the TA back immediately. On Friday I was feeling better and went to work; so on my home I called them back; she said that she already charged my credit card for the original amt she had quote me and it wasn't booked directly through Disney- and then only way that I could use the PIN was to book directly through Disney. And she said Disney "wants their money" so I would essentially have to pay for two trips, one with the original quote and another the amt with the PIN code, then would be reimbursed in the next "1-2" billing cycles :sad2:. For us, it really isn't worth the headache, and for a difference of $200 I said forget it, just keep the original trip the way it is.
Also, in trip planning mode; I really want to start making us some personalized t shirts for our trip; maybe just one or two. Any ideas on what I should do?? I'm thinking ones that say "Just Married" on our backs.
Til next time... A
Made Some Shirts for the trip...
86 days til we land in Disney!! Less than 3 months!!! There really isn't much going on in the planning department... I did managed to score a pretty good deal on shorts at Abercrombie on Saturday for $30/each I picked up two pairs "for the honeymoon" (it's my latest excuse for any new outside I buy). But I also bought 4 new shirts and a sundress at Old Navy at their sale last Saturday for a total for $39!! Once again, I blamed it on "I need these for Disney". :rotfl: I took two of the tanks I got a ON and put some iron on letters on them and I'm in the process of making DF two shirts that say MR GOULETTE and JUST MARRIED. Here's a pic of what I made... (now that I finallly figured out how to post pics!!)
I think this weekend in prep for the trip I'm going to go through our summer clothes since most of the stores are starting to get their spring/summer stuff in I need to be on the lookout for good deals, esp for the things I need.
* 78 days * I am SO happy that the days are literally flying by til our June trip! I'm also pretty psyched that March is almost over; I couldn't be happier, because living in the northeast, the winters are cold and long, the snow is deep, and I pretty much NEVER see the sun (esp. since my office at work has NO WINDOWS... there has to be some kind of stipulation for this in labor laws, right??). So now that we've set the clocks ahead it's 6:25 pm and still light out! Yippee spring/summer are on their way!!
On the lighter said.. the trip is all paid for!! So all that we will need for money towards the trip now are tips, and any food in the airport... and of course, any souvenirs we get! I've been mentally trying to think what I have for clothes, since I have lost about 20 lbs. since graduating college, probably 8 lbs. since my trip last year... leaving me now unable to donate blood due to their weight requirements. Hey, once we come back from our trip after eating all the food on the DDP chances of me being able to donate again are looking good!! I think all I will need (I use the term "need" very loosely here) are a few more tops, maybe a pair of Nike sandals my friend recommended to me or a new pair of crocs (I got a pink pair of flip flop crocs last year when I was at the World, but the dog ate part of one...). I asked DF how many pairs of shorts/tanks he thinks he may have and his answer shocked me... (and I quote)... "3 pairs of shorts.":eek: I thought he was kidding; nope, no kidding. Since we're going Sunday to Sunday he's going to need more clothes.
I've just about finished up what we're ordering from Garden Grocer... when I asked DF this early this week, he just about killed me. Me: "hey... you know how we're ordering tortilla chips to be delivered to the room in Disney?" DF: "mmhm" Me: Do you think I should pack chip clips so they don't go bad?" DF: "Ash, you really spend all day thinking about this dont you?!? It's vacation- you dont need chip clips, we still have 3 months and you're thinking about chip clips!!".
Up next: The Packing List: What do we REALLY need??
That's about it for now... til next time.
Hi, joining in!!! Congrats on your engagement! :thumbsup2 :goodvibes I've enjoyed reading through your PTR, we are also going in June! (and celebrating our anniversary which is June 10th!). Sorry about your dining PIN not working out. :sad1:
Love the shirts you made! And that is so funny about you wanting to pack chip clips...only because I would totally be thinking the same way!!! :laughing:
Ok I'm really going nuts... 67 more days!! And 66 til we're married!!! Basically I told myself I can't start packing my suitcase until we're at the 30 day mark. (sub countdown- 37 days til I can start packing!! :rotfl:). I'm kind of worried that CSR doesn't know that we're on our honeymoon because we booked through a travel agent who really didn't seem amused that we were going to Disney... :confused: Either way it'll be romantic. I did manage to get a cute little sundress for our dinner at California Grille, which, I must say I am most excited about eating at. The only thing that makes me nervous is that I'm not really into high end food, and never know what to order! Seriously, I'm happy with Dominos Pizza..so I hope I like it there! Well, just a short little update, maybe my next one will be when we FINALLY complete our Garden Grocer order and reserve a spot at a local hotel for our car while we're gone.
*59 days* Less then 2 months to go!!! Woot woot!
I did manage to go ahead and reserve a parking spot for our vehicle at a hotel nearest the airport we're flying out of via park/fly thing they offer; we're not actually staying overnight at this hotel near the airport in NH, rather just parking there and they're giving us a ride.
In other news... I've convinced myself that it will be OK if I start packing April 30th for the following reasons
1. 42 days til Disney really IS going to fly by
2. It is the ONLY weekend between now and June 11th (wedding day!) that I don't have anything planned (in the month of May alone we have a surprise 25th anniv party we're hosting for my parents, my bridal shower, DF's bachelor party, final dressing fitting, and a long weekend planned away in Maine (Memorial Weekend).
3. The weather really WON'T be nice enough here to wear most of the things I will need to pack (i.e. shorts, tanks, bathing suits, sunscreeen, etc)
4. DF usually has trouble packing himself for a weekend away (and I end up doing it) so I need to "focus" on helping him pack the week before
:rotfl: Ok I've talked enough nonsense. Til next time...
Yep, I say go ahead and start packing, you'll be too busy in the weeks to come! :thumbsup2
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