NEWS FLASH: You must be 4YO to go to Disney! Oct '11 PTR, 10/24 WE'RE BACK! p 18
:welcome: to my very first Pre-Trip Report. I have been excessively planning this trip for what seems like an eternity. It's probably been more like a year or so, but considering I still have 7 months to go....that's an eternity! :rotfl2:
I am a Disney veteran...this trip in Oct. will be my 6th. Although I am a veteran, I am by no means an expert. My first 4 trips were before the age of 14 and I had little to no input on the trip's activities. :scared1: If there's one VERY important thing you need to know about me, it's that I am an obsessive compulsive planner....and I do mean OBSESSIVE! :lmao: Not having input (ah hem...control) makes me crazy!
My most recent trip was as an adult with a group of friends. The original trip was to be 2 couples (myself and my "then" husband were one of the 2) and another male friend. About a month before the trip the other couple split up and my only female companion on the trip backed out. :sad1: So....as a 20 something I went to Disney with 3 guys (NO PLANNING SKILLS) and to top it off found out I was pregnant the day we left home. Let's just say the trip was not exactly what I had hoped. :sad2:
This time around I am taking the bull by the horns and ensuring that my visit to the World is as perfect as possible. If you have any extra Pixie Dust pixiedust: lying around please send it my way! I'll take all the good vibes I can get! :goodvibes:goodvibes:goodvibes
I am so excited to share my trip plans with all of you. As I said, I am by no means a Disney expert...but from what I have read here on the boards, MANY of you out there ARE experts. Please feel free to make suggestions, provide input on my plans or just join in on the fun! :woohoo::woohoo::woohoo: I hope you will follow along with me as I share all the wonderful things I have planned for our family vacation!
It's getting late so I must wrap it up for tonight....
NEXT UP - Introductions of the Cast :yay::yay::yay::yay::yay:
**TABLE OF CONTENTS**
Introductions: The Cast of Characters
The When & Where
How We're Getting There
4 Years Old to Go to WDW?
Magic Kingdom MUST Do's
EPCOT MUST Do's
Hollywood Studios MUST Do's
Animal Kingdom MUST Do's
Mini Update: A 'lil Disney shopping!
Official ADR List: Reservations Confirmed!
KY Derby and Disney
Day 1 - Travel Day
Day 2 - Hollywood Studios
Day 3 - EPCOT
Day 4 - Rest Day
MORE Disney Shopping
Day 5 - Magic Kingdom
Life Update: Who and How!
Fun NEW idea in Progress...Video Included!
Day 6 - Animal Kingdom
Day7 & 8 - EPCOT, MNSSHP & Departure
Trip Update w/ pics
Packing and Tie-Dye
The BIG Surprise & We Leave TODAY!
Cast of Characters
Welcome back! Next up is the Cast of Characters....and we are definitely characters! :rotfl:
:tinker: ME-Stephanie: (31... 32 on the trip)
I am mom to Caden, the most sweet and lovable 4 year old on the planet. I am the mastermind behind this entire trip and I have been planning like crazy for over a year. I am a compulsive planner. I LOVE to plan...as in making spreadsheets for EVERYTHING and organizing them in a pretty little binder. I love ALL things Disney and am looking forward to something new this year...Food & Wine at EPCOT!
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pluto: Wayne: (41)
Wayne is my wonderful boyfriend of 2 years. Caden and I are so lucky to have him in our life. He is a Disney virgin (never even been to Florida) and I am so excited to share the Magic with him. He's not quite as enthusiastic about the trip as I am, but he's very laid back and just goes with the flow. He lets me be the crazy planner I am. He is an animal lover (we have 4 dogs) and has a passion for taking pictures. I am looking forward to him capturing all the wonderful scenery at WDW.
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A few pics of us together:
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:smickey: DS-Caden: (4)
My one and only little man...I call him my Cader-Bug! This will be his very first trip to WDW. I have decided to surprise him last minute (more on that later), but I want to make sure he KNOWS what Disney World is and is excited when I tell him we are going. I have been showing him the planning DVD and other videos and pics online and he is very excited (even though he doesn't know he's going yet)! He is my pride and joy and I can't wait to introduce him to the magic!
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When I initially started planning this trip over a year ago the cast consisted of just the 3 of us above. When I started telling my mom and grandparents about the trip they had that look in their eye like they wanted to go. My grandparents (Caden's Great-Grandparents) took me on 3 of my 5 Disney trips as a child. They love Disney too and really want to be there for Caden's first visit...he is their ONLY great-grandchild. Caden is my mom's only grandchild so she of course wanted to jump on board to be there. I basically told them all that if any of them wanted to come along they were more than welcome. Sooooo....the trip now has 3 additional cast members...introductions below.
princess: Sara: (69... 70 on the trip)
My grandma. She's AMAZING and was like a second mother to me most of my childhood. We are very close and a lot alike. she is very mucha planner like me. It will be hard for her to follow my plans for the trip, but she'll do it because she loves me! She was there for my first WDW trip in 1984 and wants to be there for Caden's first trip as well.
:eeyore: Charlie (70... 71 on the trip)
My grandpa. He's the Eeyore of the group. He's fun and full of energy when he wants to be, but he's the grump for sure. He is excited to be there for Caden's first trip, but is already complaining about all the walking he'll have to do. You would think that after being married to my grandma for 51 years that he would be used to a Type A, compulsive planner......NOPE! He asked me if I had bathroom breaks scheduled in or if he was just out of luck. :rotfl2:
::MinnieMo Suzanne (50... 51 on the trip)
My mom. She is super excited about going to WDW with us. Right now she is still trying to save enough $$ so she can go. We have included her on the reservations for now, but none of us have the extra funds to pay her way so she will HAVE to save enough if she wants to go. I won't go into details, but lets just say that this will be a CHALLENGE for my mom. I hope she is able to go, but I know that I can't stress and worry over it.
There it is....the Cast of Characters for our October adventure in The World!
Caden is a cutie! How wonderful he has grandparents who WANT to spend time with im, what a blessing! Looking forward to reading more...:goodvibes
Whoohoo! Hi Stephanie! You had me at Obsessive planner! :lmao:
Hi Stephanie- another obsessive planner following you over from Karen's PTR. :laughing:
The When and Where!
In all my excitement to get started on my PTR I realized I left out some pretty basic information...the when and where! DUH! :rolleyes1
When I originally began planning this trip over a year ago I was shooting for September 2011. I knew it was one of the least crowded times to go and also one of the least expensive. :idea: $$ is a HUGE factor in many of my choices!
A little background info: I am a single mom (although I do have a wonderful boyfriend) and my son's father and I alternate years for claiming Caden on our taxes. I knew that the ONLY way I could ever afford to do WDW (at least the way I want to do it) was with a large tax return. That reason alone was why I was aiming for a fall 2011 trip to WDW since I got to claim Caden this year. :dance3: :banana::banana: :dance3:
Well...I had been unemployed (laid off from teaching :teacher:) for over a year and I FINALLY started a new job in August 2010. I work in a middle school as a data manager. Since I have the summers off I only get 3 personal days during the school year, so my week long trip to WDW in Sept was NOT going to happen! :sad2:
I waited for the 2011-2012 school calendar to be released to see when our Fall Break would be...it has a history of varying from year to year (even with the # of days we get). It was finally released right before Christmas and Fall Break falls on Thurs. 10/20, Fri. 10/21, and Mon. 10/24. Since I get 3 personal days I can take them from Mon. 10/17 thru Wed. 10/19. :thumbsup2
So...we decided to take our trip from October 15-October 22 (Saturday to Saturday). This gives us a full 7 nights but puts us home in time to give me a couple days to recuperate before heading back to work on Tuesday October 25. I'm sure I will be buried in laundry :laundy:
Currently we are booked at All-Star Movies and I am totally content with that. If some AMAZING deal comes out or I get a fantastic PIN code we MIGHT upgrade to a moderate, but we shall see...
Caden is totally Toy Story obsessed so we have requested a room in one of the Toy Story buildings. We have also requested connecting rooms. Myself, Wayne and Caden will have one room and my grandparents and mom will have the other.
Thank you Google for letting me "borrow" the pictures! ::yes::
I'm here. and we have the exact same dates!!!!!!:thumbsup2:goodvibes We are there Oct 14-22 at Bay Lake Towers (DVC).
Your son is such a cutie! How great he will get to have his first trip with his whole family. It will be so special. I can't wait to hear about how you will surprise him! My son is 3.5. He will be turning 4 a week after our trip (Oct 30). So this is a birthday trip for him. My DH turns 40 at the end of August and I turn 37 in Sept, so it is really celebrating for all of us. It is our 10 year anniv this year too. We have a lot to celebrate, i guess we will wear a lot of buttons. :rotfl:
We are planning MNSSHP and food and wine too. We are going to take Will to the pirates league and do a pirates and pals cruise if i can get one to celebrate his bday!
i am so excited too and can't wait. Like you, i am totally OCD when it comes to planning. My DH is just along for the ride. I ask him where he wants to eat and if there is anything special he wants to see or do, but other than that, he goes with what i plan, i guess that makes it easy, right?
i can't wait to read more of your plans!:wizard:
My boyfriend will be 42 in November so this is sort of a birthday trip for him as well.
I have considered doing The Pirate's League. I showed it to Caden on the Planning DVD and he was very intrigued. I'll have to wait and see on that one.
I'm glad you've joined in. It's fun to share the excitement with other people just like you! :yay:
I'm in! I'm going in October too, but earlier in the month, but it will be fun to plan along with you! I haven't started my PTR yet, but I plan to start one in a couple weeks, and will let you know when I do, right now I'm trying to finish up my November 2010 TR! :banana:
You DO have the perfect dates!!! We went in 2009 from the 19th to the 27th and it was PERFECT weather and low crowds! I would have done it again if it weren't for money and a conflict in dates, so we're going the first week of Oct! I'm excited to hear all about your plans!! :thumbsup2
Those dates sound great- good weather, good crowds, should be a great time to be at Disney!
We stayed at ASMu, right next door to Movies in September and I think you'll like the value resort, especially with a little one- the theming is just fun and over the top which kids (and ahem, some adults) really like. :thumbsup2
we did a girls trip (mom and sisters and I) to DL last September over my bday and i wore a button and i swear we got a huge free dessert everywhere we ate a table service meal- a brownie, chocolate mousse and so on! it was great! We didn't expect that and it was such a nice treat.
The pirate league is affordable too! i don't think a lot of people know about it (the general public), since they don't advertise it heavily.
great start! our first trip was when my daughter was 4, and we went with grandparents and my nephew Cayden came with us LOL! It was also in October. I'd go back that time of year in a heartbeat! Lookig forward to more!
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