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Old 03-13-2008, 06:15 PM   #1
Pryncesa
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Wink Operation Triple S - Land/Sea Trip Report 3/30-4/6! The Conclusion 9/5

The Beginning

Who: My recruits and I, family of 3 from NW Georgia

Me: AKA Commander Mama , lover of travel, obsessed with WDW, and soon, DCL. Loves to plan and surprise sons with trips to top all previous trips. Never went to Disney World as a child, and is making up for it as an adult.

DS11: AKA Private Goofy , lover of all things soft and cuddly. Obsessed with chocolate and doughnuts. Loves to watch wrestling, SpongeBob, and Naruto. Handsome, smart, funny boy who is still my baby. First trip to Disney was at age 7

DS15: AKA Happy , lover of football and paintball. Obsessed with tennis shoes and French fries. Loves to watch Naruto and listen to his iPod. Son, in honor of whose 16th birthday, this “little” trip has been put together. Sweetest, most handsome boy you’d ever want to meet. You’d never think his greatest joy is playing defense on his football team so that he can HIT somebody. First trip to Disney was at age 11.

What, when, where: 7-day Land/Sea combo, March 30 – April 6, AKL and Disney Wonder

As of 4/14/07, Operation Triple S was in effect. I began planning this trip shortly after my son's birthday last year. It dawned on me that he would be turning 16 in '08, so I wanted to do it up GRAND! So, what praytell, is Operation Triple S, you ask? Well, it is the less tongue-twisting version of Operation Secret Sweet Sixteen. My beloved son “Happy” will be celebrating his 16th birthday on 4/6. So, I have decided to take him, my younger son, and myself on a fun-filled vacation to WDW and on the DCL to celebrate. We’ve done many vacations before, but this one is super sneaky and secret . So secret, in fact, that I’d planned on not even telling my family members about it until shortly before we leave. I can’t afford any slip-ups. It is very important to me that this particular surprise be kept quiet. The boys are used to trips here and there, and they love Walt Disney World. So, I know that this trip will be a blast. We are arriving to the Orlando area on Saturday 2/29 for a little pre-trip celebration. We’re going to stay at a hotel near I-Drive, have dinner somewhere nearby and relax for the evening. Then, Sunday 3/30 the “Land” portion of our actual trip will commence. We will be staying at AKL. “Happy” has been wanting to stay at this resort ever since he knew it was in existence. This boy loves animals and being able to stay at a deluxe hotel, with his beloved animals, is sure to be a big hit. Then, on Thursday 4/3, we’ll set sail on the Disney Wonder for a 3-day cruise . I can’t wait!! I’m so excited I can’t stand it. So, this will be our first cruise, and our first trip outside of the country. I hope it is the first of many more to come.

I think I’m going to keep the “sea” part of the trip a secret until we actually get ready to leave the resort, rather than telling them about it when the Land portion of the trip is revealed. Oh, what a glorious day that will be. Maybe I’ll be super mean and let them think that we’re actually leaving the resort to go home, after only four days. That wouldn’t be so hard to do, since I can just say it was too expensive to stay more days. Oooh… that sounds like a plan. A devious, evil, brilliant kind of plan.

Why: 16th Birthday Celebration for my big guy

My son “Happy” is truly a joy. He is smart, funny, sweet, and quite possibly the most kind person I know. He is very much for doing the right thing, and is always looking for ways to please his mama. He is helpful and protective, and a fierce believer in family. He is the only teenager I know that would prefer to have a birthday party with just his family and none of his friends. He is very popular and everyone just loves him. But, he feels most comfortable, most content, with his family. He is sensitive and just about as cute as could possibly be. I know most parents think their children are nice-looking, but my son is incredibly handsome, if I do say so myself. He’s very responsible, and has grown so much that he has to look down to look his short mama in the eyes. It’s hard to believe that this is the same baby that was born six weeks too soon, and ended up being 4lbs and 13 ozs when he was born. So, I have no doubt that he will be a huge success as he grows up because he is a really strong kid. Even though he was born a premie, he didn’t have to spend any extra time in the hospital. He was perfectly healthy and was released with me. He just happened to be very little. And, of course, that time didn’t last very long at all. So, these past 16 years have been filled with so much and with so many emotions, and ups and downs. But, I can say without a doubt that most of the ups, joys, laughs, and tears of joy have been because of that boy. He makes his mama very proud and I can’t think of anyone in the entire world that I would rather lavish an incredible trip like this upon. He deserves this and so much more. Sixteen is a very special birthday, and it is my wish, my hope, my prayer, that my boy will remember his forever.

Next post… How I've kept the secret for almost an entire year!
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Past Trips: 2004-Off Site, 2006-CBR, 2007-POP,CSR, 2008-POFQ,AKL,CSR, 2010-POFQMy first TR (Land/Sea) : Operation Triple S



Last edited by Pryncesa; 09-05-2008 at 01:26 PM. Reason: Added new chapter
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Old 03-13-2008, 06:22 PM   #2
Shir Kahn
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Yay, I love reading about surprise trips, can't wait for more!
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Old 03-13-2008, 06:50 PM   #3
Pryncesa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shir Kahn View Post
Yay, I love reading about surprise trips, can't wait for more!


I have to say the secret keeping has been difficult, but it will be sooo worth it!! I see you have a PTR going, so I'm off to check it out!
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Past Trips: 2004-Off Site, 2006-CBR, 2007-POP,CSR, 2008-POFQ,AKL,CSR, 2010-POFQMy first TR (Land/Sea) : Operation Triple S


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Old 03-13-2008, 10:44 PM   #4
BrittBritt
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Oohhh, very good thinking to use the Feb. trip as your "decoy" trip! I also love how you might not tell the boys about the cruise portion until they think they're leaving for home! LOVE IT!
You are a beautiful family, and I can't wait to read more about your trip!
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Old 03-14-2008, 09:22 PM   #5
Pryncesa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrittBritt View Post
Oohhh, very good thinking to use the Feb. trip as your "decoy" trip! I also love how you might not tell the boys about the cruise portion until they think they're leaving for home! LOVE IT!
You are a beautiful family, and I can't wait to read more about your trip!


Thanks BrittBritt!! More info coming up, with the itinerary to follow!!
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Past Trips: 2004-Off Site, 2006-CBR, 2007-POP,CSR, 2008-POFQ,AKL,CSR, 2010-POFQMy first TR (Land/Sea) : Operation Triple S


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Old 03-14-2008, 09:40 PM   #6
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Smile Mission: Obtain the Passports

My first clandestine mission would be to somehow obtain passports for the boys without them suspecting we would be going anywhere anytime soon. So, I casually mentioned to Private Happy that perhaps we might want to get some passports in case we decide to take a trip abroad in the very far future. He said that it would be cool to visit other countries. Great. One down, one to go. The little inquisitive one might require a bit more thought. So, I had to come up with some answers to his inevitable “why” questions.

I explained to the boys that we would be getting our pictures taken for our new passports, which we would need “in case” we ever decided to go on a trip abroad (in the very far future). My younger son asked what “abroad” meant. I told him what it meant, so of course he asked where we would ever possibly go. So, I said, “Oh, maybe Mexico or Guatemala (since they have family there), or maybe Jamaica or something.” That seemed to quiet his questions for the time being so that was good. Getting the pictures taken was pretty uneventful, and I was to come back the following day to pick them up. Well, when I returned, lo and behold, they had not been printed, and actually had been “accidentally” deleted from the camera. I was not at all pleased, since I had a schedule to keep as far as getting the applications submitted. After all, I only had 11 months until our trip. Anyway, I high-tailed it out of there to go and pick up the boys to head back for a repeat performance of picture taking . (So that we could get these passports that were for a “possible trip sometime in the very far future”). My younger son is a bit of a whiner at times, especially when he is hungry. So, he was none too pleased when we arrived back at the same place we were the day prior in order to take pictures again for some stupid passports that we would probably never even use anyway. This time, once our pictures were taken, they were downloaded to the computer right away and processed while we waited… and waited… and waited… and waited. I was certain Private “Goofy” was going to waist away from the lack of food and pure boredom. This is one child who can not ever stand to be bored, for even one second. Constant entertainment is a must for him. Private “Happy” had been distracted the entire time since he had noticed a paintball store mere yards from the photo shop. So, while PG and I waited for our pictures to be printed, PH took off for the paintball shop to see what goodies they might have to feed his obsession. Finally, the pictures were done, and I got up to get them and pay so that we could get out of there. Then, it happened. The photo processor dude, who we’ll call Grumpy, because, well, he was pretty grumpy, decided to ask “So, I guess you all are planning on a family trip, huh?” Man, why did he have to say anything? Couldn’t he just hand me my pictures and not make small talk? So, I say “No, we’re just getting them now in case we decide to take a trip somewhere in a few years.” It sounded so dumb, but he didn’t respond, so maybe he bought it. Whether he did or didn’t was not my concern. I just wanted to make sure that the kids didn’t suspect we’d be going on a trip in the very “near” future. Well, finally, that particular mission was complete. Now, on to the next mission: Submitting the passport applications.

A couple of months after getting the pictures done, we found ourselves at the post office to submit our passport applications. There was a short wait, but everything went smoothly. The lady asked my boys if they were excited about going to the Bahamas . Of course they didn’t have a clue what she was talking about, so I once again, spoke of a “possible” trip to be had in the very far future. Sometimes people really just talk too much.

About three months from the time the applications were submitted we got these little jewels in the mail.


I was happily surprised that they had been processed so quickly. Now, we can travel almost anywhere in the world we want to. I’m so excited for us! Neither of my parents had passports, which is kind of sad to me. Neither of them had/have ever been in an airplane, either, which is also sad to me. I want to go everywhere and see everything. Now my children do too. We will be world travelers!!

Up next... The Itinerary
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Me38 DS15 DS20:
Past Trips: 2004-Off Site, 2006-CBR, 2007-POP,CSR, 2008-POFQ,AKL,CSR, 2010-POFQMy first TR (Land/Sea) : Operation Triple S


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Old 03-13-2008, 06:47 PM   #7
Pryncesa
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Smile How the Secret Has been Kept...so far

What has helped me keep quiet about all this for almost a year, you wonder? Well, I had some other trips planned to keep my mind and mouth occupied. We had a trip to WDW late May, early June last year, a beach trip early August last year, and a second WDW trip for mid-October. With school commencing shortly after that trip, the holidays and my birthday quickly to follow, I had enough to keep me sufficiently distracted. That was, until January. That was when my final payment for the package was due. Once that was done, I had no place to focus my energy. I would have just had to wait for the days to pass. Or would I? Well, I’m not very good waiting. Although, I was able to do one more thing for the trip (other than shopping, of course). I was able to schedule our excursions. LOL. I say “excursions” as if there were many. I was really only thinking seriously about one, the dolphin excursion in Nassau. Birthday boy will love this, and so will my other son and I. So, I booked it. That took about half an hour, including filling out my travel documents and printing those. Now what? Hmm… well, the boys had a few days out of school for winter break. (What the heck? Weren’t they just out of school two weeks for the holidays? ) Anyway, since there was no football schedule to contend with, I thought a trip to WDW would be in order. But, I couldn’t do that, could I? We were already going to WDW the following month. There was no way I could possibly be thinking about that, could I?

I could, indeed! We booked a trip to POFQ for 2/14-2/17 and it was great! We had a wonderful time! I thought that this was the perfect decoy trip. They would never think in a million years that they would be going back to WDW so soon. So, this little trip assisted me immensely with keeping my secret and throwing off the youngsters!! Whew! I’m so glad we went because I was about to burst!! Here are a few pictures from our trip last month.

Me with the birthday boy at Animal Kingdom.


Private Goofy and his big brother. Hmmm...I wonder what he was up to


A picture of the castle.


The boys on Indy Speedway:


Up next… The procuring of the passports…
__________________
Me38 DS15 DS20:
Past Trips: 2004-Off Site, 2006-CBR, 2007-POP,CSR, 2008-POFQ,AKL,CSR, 2010-POFQMy first TR (Land/Sea) : Operation Triple S


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