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Old 12-14-2008, 11:07 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

The Evans' Take on the World-The Do-Over Trip (pics addded)

I am so excited to be writing my first pre-trip report!

Here is the scoop. Our last trip was 2 years ago in March- it was an extended family trip with two sets of grandparents, a great grandma, two aunts and our bunch! A week before we left my husband was hospitalized with a massive blood infection. By the time departure day rolled around he was stable but still hospitalized and way too weak to go. We stayed in a pool villa and so many people had so much money tied up we couldn't cancel. So we went with out him..... over his birthday, with his parents and grandparents!

So this trip is for his 31st birthday!

The Characters:
Mommy (27 year old private school teacher)
Daddy (30 year old networking company owner)
Alaina (7- 3rd trip)
Jayden (6- 3rd trip)
Elisha (4- 3rd trip)
Kaya (1- FIRST TRIP! okay so she went in utero on before mentioned trip)
A picture of our "littles":

Time Frame:
Spring Break 2009
We are extended our March break a few days to take advantage of the 4 for 7 deal.

Port Orleans Riverside
Yes we will be squeezed in there like sardines but we don't spend much time in the room and love this resort.

We'll be doing the big reveal on Christmas morning!

Last edited by an_evans; 01-15-2009 at 08:59 PM. Reason: pictures
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Old 12-14-2008, 11:13 AM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

Birthday Celebration Day!

Jason has always wanted to eat at Sci-Fi but somehting else has always semed better but in honor of his birthday SCI-FI IT IS!

We have a day at Disney Studios and an early lunch at Sci- Fi planned.
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Old 12-14-2008, 11:25 AM   #3
Missing the House of Mouse!
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Brooklyn, New York
Posts: 480

Good luck with your 1st report!

Can't wait to read it.
I've never done one before.

Hope you have a magical holiday.
Me DH DS21 DD12 DD10 DS6
1992, 1995, 1998, & 2000 - Sheraton Vistana Resort
2001 - Disney Cruise/Disney Magic
2003 - Polynesian Resort
2007 & 2008 - Caribbean Beach Resort - Pirate & Princess Party and Flower & Garden Festival
2009 - Saratoga Springs Resort - Flower and Garden
2011 - Magic Kingdom, Islands of Adventure, Universal Studios, Sea World & Aquatica
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Old 12-15-2008, 09:38 AM   #4
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

Advance Dinner Reservations!

The first of the reservations and plans are made! We decided last night to bump up to the deluxe dining plan. It is a $400 difference but we decided the difference wasn't too much to consider that almost every meal and snack will be covered and we can eat wherever we want.

I am having a hard time shaking off the DIS mentality of trying to get the most for free and and not thinking about maximizing value. This is really about being easy, saying yes, and feeling all inclusive. We should eat where we want!.... we should eat whee we want!.... We should eat where we want!

Day One:
Evening arrival at Magic Kingdom (tradition)
Dinner at Casey Corner (in time for a picnic in our fireworks spot)

Day Two: Magic Kingdom
(L) Cinderella's Royal Table
Daddy and Kaya have never been and I have been craving a Major Domo's Pie for the last 18 months.

Day Three: Disney Studios
(L) Sci Fi Drive In
Daddy's birthday!

Day Four: Pool/ Dowtown Disney
(D) 1900 Park Fare Cinderelas's Gala Feast
We met the step-sister on our last trip and they were a riot. Hoping they make an appearance!

Day Five: Animal Kingdom
Day Six : Epcot
(D) Garden Grille
We love the food here! I am thinking of doing the land tour before we eat.

Day Seven: Magic Kingdom
(D) Chef Mickeys
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:33 AM   #5
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Indiana
Posts: 475

To take advantage of upgrading to deluxe dining, you should eat at least 2 table service meals a day. If you're into character meals, I suggest going for Tusker House breakfast on your Animal Kingdom day. I will be doing it for the first time on my next trip, but I have heard great things about it from friends and on Dis.
VWL Feb 2011
AKV Jan 3-9, 2010
BLT Oct 19-23, 2009 with jaleaton
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Old 12-15-2008, 03:24 PM   #6
I was stuck in that position and ... It took 4 strapping young boys to hoist me back on my feet
Personally, I'm a popper! I love me some black heads.
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Location: where am I and what am I doing in this basket??
Posts: 9,061

Your title caught my attention.....Evans is my maiden name.

How are you going to tell you kids on christmas?
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Old 12-15-2008, 04:12 PM   #7
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

Originally Posted by kayla87 View Post
To take advantage of upgrading to deluxe dining, you should eat at least 2 table service meals a day. If you're into character meals, I suggest going for Tusker House breakfast on your Animal Kingdom day. I will be doing it for the first time on my next trip, but I have heard great things about it from friends and on Dis.
We will eat two table services a day for sure! Sit down meals are actually a welcome break for us... Tusker house looks good. I was just wondering if we could see the opening parade- that is a first for us and the deciding factor.

How are you going to tell you kids on Christmas?
We haven't decided yet. We are considering making a dvd and wrapping it and letting them open raft we watch the parade. We also are doing something Christmas night as "one more gift".
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Old 12-17-2008, 02:07 PM   #8
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 768

Ooh - I hope your do-over works for you!

You picked 2 of our favorites from our trip - 1900 Park Fare & Garden Grill. And, yes, we rode Living with the Land right before our meal - that was cool. I was kind of disappointed we couldn't see the greenhouse from dinner, though - that was our favorite part!

Stay strong on making it just your family - they had their turn to go with you! Of course, our own trip was our very first family vacation where we weren't either visiting friends or family, or taking someone with us, lol.
Irene - WDW newbie

Current PTR for a maybe trip - Don't tell the kids: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2012444
Trip #1: Jan 2-8, 2008 WDW - TR http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1632004
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Old 01-07-2009, 02:11 PM   #9
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

How many times can you change your ADRs?

Well the kid shave been told, the deposit paid, and the dining reservations made (a few times) and we are counting down!

Disney Dining Plan vs. Deluxe Dining Plan
I LOVE the idea of every snack and every meal being paid for before we get there. I hate the 1400 price tag! (That is seriously less then I make in a month teaching private school!) We live on a pretty tight budget so the idea of spending 1400 for seven days of food- yikes! I don't like to vacation on a budget and I like to feel like the skys the limit on vacation.....So here is been my thought process.
  • With a full two sit-down meals a day we would come out about $200 dollars ahead and our giftcard ($200 promo) would cover gratuity)
  • We would eat A LOT, much more then we would probably need to and its seems a bit excessive. We planned Liberty Tree Tavern, Tony Town square, Sci-fi, Brown derby, 1900 Park Fare, Tusker House, Yek and Yeti, Akerskus Breakfast, Garden Grille, Ohana's Breakfast, Chef Mickeys, & Cinderella's Royal Table.
  • I am already dreading the big popcorn debate. Will I let my children get the popcorn buckets we all adore and use every week at home or make them stick to the box on the plan!?!

So I crunch the numbers and sit down the kids and pick our must do's. We come up with: CRT lunch, Sci-Fi (Daddy birthday Pick), Chef Mickey's, Garden Grille, 1900 Park Fare, Ohana's Breakfast, and Brown Derby.
  • I can pay out of pocket for brown derby- we are ordering a cake for daddy so we will skip dessert. CRT is also a 2 TS credit meal but includes gratuity on the plan so it is a better use of 2ts on the plan then BD.
Counter Service Breakfast each day the resort will cost $200.00 for 5 people on 6 days.

Brown Derby will be around $150.00

An additional $100 for extra snacks.
  • That brings us to a grand total of 1240.00 vs. 1460.00 and another 60.00 worth of mandatory gratuity.

So despite the fact that we could almost double our dining for about $200 dollars I have decided enough is enough! I'll go with the regular plan and put $450 on a gift card for the extras and feel confident I am making the smart but still indulgent decision!

Now I just have to cancel the extra's!
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Old 05-11-2009, 04:04 PM   #10
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 232

A season of sacrifice- Time to Celebrate!

We are a family of six. We have three daughters and a son and are big Disney fans. I hope you enjoy our trip report as I have enjoyed reading so many.

The Back Story

Our first trip to Disney as a family was 4 years ago. It was given to us a s a surprise bonus from my husbands employer. We had a few weeks to plan and although we had dreamed of taking our kids to Disney for awhile, we believed it was out of the realm of our possibilities and ended up with little time to anticipate.
Our next trip two years ago gave us plenty of time to plan, a little experience to base our decisions on, and turned out to be quite the opposite that we expected. We had revealed the surprise on Christmas morning. Our families excitement was so great that they planned to join us! I made and unmade reservations more time s then I could count. Eventually our trip morphed into a multigenerational pool villa trip. I say trip because it was far from a vacation. I realized on this trip despite my strong desire to help people plan a fabulous Disney vacation- I never wanted to experience it with them again.
One week before we were set to leave, Jason my husband developed a massive blood infection. He was admitted to the hospital and began multiple rounds of powerful antibiotics. Everyday we expected him to be released. We made contingency plans that if he wasn’t able to leave the day we had planned, he would fly down and meet us. Despite our family’s trauma, our extended family had locked in vacation plans, prepaid for a non-refundable vacation home, and were to far financially (and emotionally) invested to cancel. We held on firmly to our dream!
Six months pregnant I traipsed through the world with my chin up. We had our good moments, but because Jason was not released until 3 days into our trip and was far too weak to tackle such an active vacation, I spent the week as a single parent. Alaina spent most of the week battling a major ear infection that would turn into a month long illness. The old proverbial saying goes that absence makes the heart grow fonder proved to be true. Although Jason’s job left me to parent our threes kiddos alone much of the time, I wasn’t prepared for how lonely this trip would be. I was reminded of how well we work together and how much we really need him.
Two months later I would give birth to our fourth child, Kaya Faith. Kaya was born premature and required a month in NICU. It was an experience that would change who we were as people and parents. While it was an emotional roller coaster, there were these moments that I will be grateful eternally. Had she been born at home as we planned and joined our family with ease, we would not have spent hours and days holding vigil by her bed. As I our rocked and held her for hours, I realized that this was gift I would not have given her if I was at home with her. There would have dishes, and laundry, and homework, and play dates to attend. As Jason and I spent hours every evening with her isolette between us, I knew that I would have missed watching my husband fall in love with his daughter and me falling deeper in love with him. Our older kids were farmed out to friends and family and eagerly awaited the reuniting of their family and a chance to finally meet the baby they already loved.
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Old 05-11-2009, 04:04 PM   #11
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That fall God placed in our hearts a dream of starting our own business. Jason left the job that kept him away for us most of the week to become a work at home dad. I found a full-time photography position and we switched roles for a season. This season required many sacrifices including having a home of our own. In March, instead of taking our now annual Disney trip we looked forward to moving out of our family’s home and into a place of own. After running a business and raising four children out of two borrowed bedroom, the only castle we were dreaming of was a home of our own.
We booked a trip in September during free dining. We knew the healing power a week away could provide and were really hoping to be able to pull it off. Just a few weeks into our new home, my mom’s life began to spiral into crisis. Her and her two daughters ages 9 & 12 were facing homelessness. We invited them to stay ion our home while she got back on our feet. Summer energy cost and the price of adding three additional members to our family made a Disney trip out of reach. With much solidarity, we cancelled our trip.
As the weeks led up to Christmas, we realized that our children were in need of nothing. Even though it had been 18 months of sacrifice and many “not right nows”, our children still had everything they needed and much of what they wanted. We decided to surprise them with a Christmas trip. With spring break a few months away and a tax refund on the horizon, we decided to go for it!
Jason’s birthday would fall over our trip and with the sacrifice our family had made over the last 18 months, the “What Will You Celebrate?” campaign could not have been more fitting.
The big reveal came on Christmas morning. We spend the wee hours of the morning with his parents and came to our personal celebration. We watched the Christmas Disney World Parade snuggled up on the couch. The parade was met with squeals and screams and much joy! Our baby, now almost two had been thoroughly coached and recognized nearly every character. Our girls shared memories from previous trips and my husband and I exchanged excited glances. After the parade Jason said we were going to watch a new movie- a Christmas gift. We snuggled down on the coach in familiar positions. The movie began as many of our favorites, with Tinkerbelle flying over the castle. The next scene shows Peter Pan and Wendy flying to Neverland. The kids are convinced it is Return to Neverland until they here Daddy’s voice over the movie. He proceeds to tell them they are going to Disney World in less then 100 hundred days!
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Old 05-11-2009, 05:28 PM   #12
Proud DISer for 13 years!
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Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 891

Wow! What a testament of strength to a loving family! I can't wait to hear more about Christmas morn!

June 2001 *Swan* - June 2006 *Beach Club Villas* - June & October 2009 *All Star Sports & Contemporary MK View* - April 2011 *Pop Century* - November 2011 *Disney Dream & Polynesian* - June 2012 *Port Orleans Riverside & Beach Club* - March 2013 - *Disney Magic* - June 2013 *Offsite Timeshare* - November 2013 *Disney Wonder* -June 2014 *Disney Wonder to Alaska* - August 2014 *Port Orleans French Quarter & Disney Dream*
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Old 05-11-2009, 08:52 PM   #13
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We do have an awesome and gracious God. You are a great family of faith and trust. And even in the "trials" you were able to rise above and help others. I love what you said about your children having all they needed and some of what they wanted..if we could all see that May you continue to feel the hand of God upon you
God Bless You, Marilyn

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Old 05-12-2009, 10:06 AM   #14
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Posts: 232

Ya'll are very sweet!
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