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Old 05-09-2012, 07:57 PM   #1
estherhead
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Top Ten reasons you know you have a Disney Obsession:

10) You clicked on this TR just to make sure you don't. Knowing full well you do.
9) You actually know what Disboards and MiceChat are and the difference.
8) Your iphone ring tone is the Fantasmic song.
7) You refer to all employees at all companies as Cast Members.
6) When you're feeling a little sad, you put on one of your many Mickey t-shirts (or earrings or scarf) to feel better.
5) You correct people when they call Disneyland Disney World & vice versa.
4) Your children have fought about who gets to write a report on Walt Disney. The teacher finally caves and lets them both do it.
3) Your friends and family text "Have a Magical day" as a standard greeting.
2) You are currently and regularly listening to Mouse World Radio on your iphone.
1) Despite having a perfectly good Disney close on your coast, you are more than willing to spend the money to take your family to the other Disney just to compare.

Guilty!


Hi!

My name is Perla. I'm part of a 2 woman Disney obsessed team. My other half is named Suzy and we write TR's all about the ins and outs on the Disney World thread.

Suzy visited Disneyland several years ago with her family.

My family was understandably jealous. And we made it our mission to get there ourselves.

While awaiting our turn, Donald (my sweet dh) and I were shooting a wedding in Malibu for a friend and decided to just check it out a year and a half ago. From that point on, it wasn't just a dream. It was an official plan.

Which brings us to today. Well, brings us to 13 days from now when we fly out of this state into the Eureka state. But I'm gonna just give you a bit of a pre-trip and intros, for now.

As stated, my name is Perla. I'm 38 and the mom of 3 girls. I'm the vice president and general manager of a small heating and cooling company. I'm pretty well traveled. Italy, Russia, Spain, Yellowstone, etc. etc. I've even visited the exotic destination of California a couple of times. But I've spent just one, soaking wet day at Disneyland. I love the mouse. And want to share his home with my girls.

Here I am in Disneyland with my sweetie:


Donald is his name. He is almost 38 (in less than a week) and works with me. Many of his childhood vacation memories are at Ft. Wilderness at WDW so though originally not as into WDW as I was, he was quite easy to convert. And it is him 100% that has driven this family pilgrimage to Walt's park.

Here he is soaking wet at Disneyland:


We have three girls, as I already mentioned, and the five of us are quite the little team.

Mulan is the eldest. She's a mature 11 year old & will start 8th grade next year. I'll stereotype here and have you imagine exactly what an elder sister should be and act like. Boom. You've got it. Smart, sarcastic, bossy, fiercely loyal to her family, born to caregive, willing and capable. She's slowly becoming an adult and I'm not one bit sentimental about that. She'll make a great adult.

Here she is at BBB at WDW.

Ariel is the middle child. She's ten. I'd love to say that you can just stereotype her as well. But that simply doesn't work. As the only typical thing about Ariel and that there isn't much typical about her. And she LOVES that about herself. Despite feeling often like no one understands her, she wouldn't have it any other way. Being a one of a kind is very important to her. And sometimes that can be a little lonely. But what's the alternative? Being typical. And that, my friends, would be beyond unacceptable. She starts 6th grade next year. And she LOVES Disney. You want the honest truth? She loves it more than the rest of us. And we love it a lot.

Here she is on Maelstrom in Epcot:


The youngest is Boo. She's 5. If Ariel is quirky, Boo is just weird. And sadly in this narrative I must admit she's the one that's like me. Good thing cause I LOVE weird. Love it. She's funny, happy, fearless, and overall a kid. A full out dirty, barefoot, frog catching (and sometimes kissing), swimming, giggling, enthusiastic, Disney loving kid. You want easy going? You want funny things said that make you laugh right out loud? You want honesty? Then Boo is your girl.

Here she is at the Magic Kingdom WDW Barber shop:


And here we all are at the WDW Teacups:


So. Disneyland. I know what you're thinking. We WDW vets need to change our strategy when we head on over to the west coast. But don't you worry. My little one day pouring down the rain preview, has prepared me. Well, that and Suzy's trip and report, reading Hydroguy's stuff, and all kinds of other things and research. And I got Ridemax.

I'm ready to mix my Disney knowledge and my fastpass skills with my chill attitude.

I do hereby promise and solemnly swear to use the two parks as one park. I promise to avoid DL on weekends (though I'm going on Memorial day ) and get to the park 30 minutes early. I will dash at 10:00 (9:45) to DCA and get our FPs to WoC. I promise to get to WoC 60 minutes early and follow the handydandy map on this site. And I got a room at HoJo and will eat at Mimi's.

I promise.

Here's the actual plan:

Fly in and stay at airport. Drive to Sequoia and Yosemite. Then visit our friends in Malibu (they actually live in Thousand Oaks but you know, of course, we'll be popping over those mountains and watching the surfers.) And then 6 nights at the HoJo with LA & Anaheim highlights. We arrive at the HoJo the Sunday night of Memorial Day weekend. And are planning right now on Monday and Tuesday putting in long, killer days running wild with the happy crowds. Then the next three days we'll just casually do Hollywood and DL however we feel like doing it. But my casual isn't exactly the same as everyone else's casual.

That's my intro. More to come in the following days as the mayhem begins!!!!!!!!! I've not even BEGUN on my packing and true plans/itinerary. Prepare yourselves for a bit of panic as we get closer.

Last edited by estherhead; 05-09-2012 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 05-09-2012, 08:30 PM   #2
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I'm in!!!!

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Old 05-09-2012, 10:07 PM   #3
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I'm here too and super excited!
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:52 PM   #4
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Old 05-10-2012, 08:16 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jedijill View Post
I'm in!!!!

Jill in CO
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Originally Posted by taymaesmom View Post
I'm here too and super excited!
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Subbing!
Welcome one, welcome all. You all may be excited, but not as excited as MEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!

Last night we watched Modern Family's Disneyland show. It was so fun. I really liked that they did not just the typical "woohoo we're at Disney" but also backstory of what a trip really is like. And just little funny things that people who go often would know.

One character struggles with cell phone signal.
One character wears the wrong shoes.
One character puts his kid on a leash & endures the glares of everyone.

And behind it all is this story about a dad being at the breaking point of his marriage and taking his kids to Disney and trying to hide his inner emotions and deciding at the end of the day to keep his family together.

I'm not saying it was deep in general, I don't think Modern Family tries to be deep, it's just that they got it. The writers understood pretty much everything about Disney without being obvious about it.

Plus, of course, there were the Dapper Dans and characters and the castle, Dumbo, Big Thunder Mt. Railroad, Main St. USA, etc. etc.

I know they filmed this in February so, perhaps this was just me, but it seemed soooo obvious that Matterhorn was not it any shots. I think they were very careful. The castle shot was at a certain angle I think to make sure there's no Matterhorn in it. They just talk briefly about the ride but never see it.

If you didn't watch it, you should.

Boo and I literally jumped up and down in excitement once it was over. Best Disney promo ever.

I didn't feel well yesterday, actually I'm not 100% today. And as I lay down to fall asleep, I couldn't. All the stress of all the things I need to do just overwhelmed me and I decided that today I would write a list. Print off a packing list and write a list of all the stuff I must accomplish before we fly out of here.

I know we don't leave for 12 more days, 10 hours, 21 minutes, and 12 seconds, but between now and when we leave I have to:

1) Film and edit a commercial
2) Go to a 2 day seminar
3) Train the guy I just hired

That kind of puts the 12 days into perspective, eh? And I was trying to catch up on laundry and had to do THREE loads over. I got so frustrated that Donald took over briefly last night. Donald has also been running around like a chicken with his head cut off. And his list is just as long as mine. In addition to the seminar he has to drive 2 hours away THIS Saturday to another meeting.

Yeah, I'm gonna need some lists.

The thing is, May is actually kind of a bad time for us to take vacation as it's when our business goes WILD. But my kids are in school so I have to follow the breaks and I like to escape in the middle of the mayhem. It makes it feel less oppressive.

Does anyone else feel like I'm procrastinating all the things I need to get done by whining about all the things I need to get done? I'm sitting at my office at work playing on Disboards & drinking my coffee instead of working on my pile. Shhhhhh..... don't let my guys know.
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:59 AM   #6
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May 2006-1st family trip to WDW! Loved Windsor Hills! Total cost including airfare, condo. rental at WH, park tix and rental car =$1800
Nov. 13-22 2007-2nd trip to WDW with Baby Hartley #3-it's a boy!!! Total cost including airfare, condo. rental at WH, park tix and rental car =$2200
May 2009- 3 nights in a 2 bedroom at SSR and then our 1st Disney cruise on the Magic! Total cost for 2 Cat. 12's -upgraded to Cat. 10's=$2900

June 11-20 2010- Our super cheap, surprising the kids, 1st time driving, celebrating Ryan's 3rd birthday trip! Total cost=$950
Nov.12-22, 2010 Took our in-laws along for their 1st trip ever! Stayed at Indian Creek and had a blast!
Oct.10-15, 2011 Crazy Columbus Crowds(did YES program) & cruised on the Dream Oct. 16-20
Oct. 19-29, 2012 Our trip re-do w/the in-laws, swam w/ the manatees & drove home through Sandy!
June 21-30, 2013 Celebrating our 17th anniversary!
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Old 01-05-2013, 06:23 PM   #7
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http://www.amazon.com/Embark-13-ft-S...pr_product_top

That is the link. We looked high and low for this tent. It was under $100 when we bought it and wasn't the awkward shape that big screen houses often are. I believe you can't buy it anymore. We love it! As far as water tightness, I am methodical with my waterproofing. When we buy any new tent product I wait until the weather shows 3-4 days of sunshine in a row, put them up and waterproof them three times a day. Especially the seams. It costs a lot but is so worth it. This spring we went camping and the first night was a torrential, windy thunderstorm. Everyone we were camping with were sad. But we were snug as could be, not even any drips. Because of the wind, the screen house didn't fair as well, but the center was still dry and our bins were. We put a picnic table with a waterproof tablecloth in the middle and our plastic bins underneath. All in all, we were able to dry out within 30 minutes. Some of our friends never did recover and just went home.

And a screen house is worth the money and effort. Our can go up with just one person. But we almost never do. It takes just moments with two.

Waterproof, waterproof, waterproof. Trust me on this one.
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:11 PM   #8
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Just getting caught up! I love reading about your adventures in "my" neck of the woods. It's fun to get a different perspective of places we've been. LOL about CA having better shopping malls/stores! I think you're right though -- when we go out of state the shopping is very different...

I hope 2013 has been great so far for the Perla and Suzy clans! Looking forward to reading some more about your CA trip when you're back.

I'm off to watch the surprise video now!
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Old 04-13-2013, 08:40 PM   #9
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I have been reading through your trip report this afternoon, and have enjoyed every bit of it! You are a wonderful writer! I appreciate all the time and effort you've spent in sharing this here for everyone to enjoy.

Last summer, I took a very similar trip out west. We stopped at Disneyland and Yosemite, ending up in San Fransisco. I absolutely fell in love with Yosemite! We stayed in the Curry Village, too, and really enjoyed the place. I could stay a whole summer there and be very happy.

And I wanted to say also that I agree with your statement about the pictures of Yosemite. It's difficult to really explain what it is like, and the pictures don't do justice to how amazingly beautiful it all is. I want to go back.....
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:36 PM   #10
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I have been reading through your trip report this afternoon, and have enjoyed every bit of it! You are a wonderful writer! I appreciate all the time and effort you've spent in sharing this here for everyone to enjoy.

Last summer, I took a very similar trip out west. We stopped at Disneyland and Yosemite, ending up in San Fransisco. I absolutely fell in love with Yosemite! We stayed in the Curry Village, too, and really enjoyed the place. I could stay a whole summer there and be very happy.

And I wanted to say also that I agree with your statement about the pictures of Yosemite. It's difficult to really explain what it is like, and the pictures don't do justice to how amazingly beautiful it all is. I want to go back.....
Hi! Sorry it took me so long to reply. I've been having guilt about this thread. It's been almost a year and I haven't even gotten to Disneyland in my Disneyland TR! I have been super busy but things are slowing down just a bit I hope. I am hoping to start a new blog (I've paid for the name enchantingbeginnings) but haven't started it either! But I have this TR, last August's TR, and our upcoming trip to wdw in 3 months time. And I don't really want to have nothing written on them online. So I'm gonna get moving. Say tuned in the next two weeks for whatever I decide to do. But I do promise that whatever form it takes. I will eventually take you all to DL with me. I promise! You will find out what happened May 2012.

And yes, Yosemite is unbelievable. We did Hawaii this March, no kids. And it was gorgeous. So, so gorgeous. But for all the amazing waterfalls there Donald and I agreed, they couldn't even begin to touch the smallest of Yosemite's waterfalls.
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Old 05-05-2013, 10:44 PM   #11
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Hi! Glad you're back. I was hoping you'd finish this report. Ooooo, Hawaii. I wouldn't mind a bit if you threw in a few of those pictures.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:01 PM   #12
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I love his thread. This is our second weekend home since our first WDW trip and the magic hasn't faded. DH and I are spending our free time rewatching videos and looking at pictures from our trip (oh and planning next years trip). The little bottles of Mickey shampoo we had left over the last day are almost empty, but the memories are still fresh. This has been our first vacation in 5 years and it has done so much to strengthen our family. Here is why I am already a Disney fanatic.

1) We started taking family walks. While I was doing research I ran across something that said you walk on average 14miles a day at WDW. I walk everyday with DS, but my husband has a desk job and hasn't had much time to exercise. We started taking a 2.5 mile walk on the weekend, and not only was it good for us but it gave us some great time to talk about the week. My husband enjoyed the walks so much he kept them up during the week even when he got home after 9 pm. Needless to say he started loosing weight!

2) I got to plan. Sounds silly but I love planning. Before becoming a stay at home mom I was in finance. II had so much fun making budgets, spreadsheets, and putting together a nice organized trip binder. It gave me some of that orderly satisfaction you don't always get as a SAHM. (Don't get me wrong I love being at home and there are plenty of other opportunities for OCD like order, but this is the most fun way to let your OCD flourish)

3) Appreciating the way Disney does EVERYTHING right (well almost). DH is an engineer, and is cursed with a very efficient mind. Situations that only slightly annoy some people REALLY annoy him because he has usually instantly figured out a much more efficient way to do it. Disney does so many things right that there was a lot on the trip (the luggage system, magic Express, resort check in, park entry machines, and the FP system etc.) were making DH positively giddy. One night in our resort he sat smiled real big and said "imagine working in procurement for disney! Look at how much of this is single sourced! Imagine the contract negotiations!" (Weird things make him giddy) I think he has a new dream job

4) our sons reaction to everything. How could I not include that! I was worried 2 would be to young, but while he probably won't remember it, I really thing, but we had fun watching him discover everything Wdw had to offer and he learned so many new words while we were there!

5) We are more in sync as a family. It is hard to explain but by the end of the trip we just functioned more as team. We anticipate each others needs better and DH seems more empowered as a father (he even diffused a temper tantrum all by himself)

6) Exposure to families from all over the country and world. Where else can you go and visit with so many families from so many places!

7) Everyone is so friendly! Especially the Disney employees. How to do you have a company so large and keep all the employees so empowered and happy? On a related note, the life guards were the most attentive life guards we have ever seen.

8) When DH has a frustration day we get the Disney binder out, reminisce over our past trip and day dream about our next one. It fixes everything.

9) You get to be a kids again. Everyone knows this, I don't need to explain.

10) You can let your inner geek out. Yes I went the full nine yards, matching shirts, stroller license, custom luggage tags, water bottles etc. My sweet husband humored me with all oft silliness.

We had a great Disney experience. So much so Dh said he never wants to take a non Disney vacation, and with Adventures by Disney we may not have to. I can't wait to return to AoA next May.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeeskaMomma View Post
I love his thread. This is our second weekend home since our first WDW trip and the magic hasn't faded. DH and I are spending our free time rewatching videos and looking at pictures from our trip (oh and planning next years trip). The little bottles of Mickey shampoo we had left over the last day are almost empty, but the memories are still fresh. This has been our first vacation in 5 years and it has done so much to strengthen our family. Here is why I am already a Disney fanatic.

1) We started taking family walks. While I was doing research I ran across something that said you walk on average 14miles a day at WDW. I walk everyday with DS, but my husband has a desk job and hasn't had much time to exercise. We started taking a 2.5 mile walk on the weekend, and not only was it good for us but it gave us some great time to talk about the week. My husband enjoyed the walks so much he kept them up during the week even when he got home after 9 pm. Needless to say he started loosing weight!

2) I got to plan. Sounds silly but I love planning. Before becoming a stay at home mom I was in finance. II had so much fun making budgets, spreadsheets, and putting together a nice organized trip binder. It gave me some of that orderly satisfaction you don't always get as a SAHM. (Don't get me wrong I love being at home and there are plenty of other opportunities for OCD like order, but this is the most fun way to let your OCD flourish)

3) Appreciating the way Disney does EVERYTHING right (well almost). DH is an engineer, and is cursed with a very efficient mind. Situations that only slightly annoy some people REALLY annoy him because he has usually instantly figured out a much more efficient way to do it. Disney does so many things right that there was a lot on the trip (the luggage system, magic Express, resort check in, park entry machines, and the FP system etc.) were making DH positively giddy. One night in our resort he sat smiled real big and said "imagine working in procurement for disney! Look at how much of this is single sourced! Imagine the contract negotiations!" (Weird things make him giddy) I think he has a new dream job

4) our sons reaction to everything. How could I not include that! I was worried 2 would be to young, but while he probably won't remember it, I really thing, but we had fun watching him discover everything Wdw had to offer and he learned so many new words while we were there!

5) We are more in sync as a family. It is hard to explain but by the end of the trip we just functioned more as team. We anticipate each others needs better and DH seems more empowered as a father (he even diffused a temper tantrum all by himself)

6) Exposure to families from all over the country and world. Where else can you go and visit with so many families from so many places!

7) Everyone is so friendly! Especially the Disney employees. How to do you have a company so large and keep all the employees so empowered and happy? On a related note, the life guards were the most attentive life guards we have ever seen.

8) When DH has a frustration day we get the Disney binder out, reminisce over our past trip and day dream about our next one. It fixes everything.

9) You get to be a kids again. Everyone knows this, I don't need to explain.

10) You can let your inner geek out. Yes I went the full nine yards, matching shirts, stroller license, custom luggage tags, water bottles etc. My sweet husband humored me with all oft silliness.

We had a great Disney experience. So much so Dh said he never wants to take a non Disney vacation, and with Adventures by Disney we may not have to. I can't wait to return to AoA next May.
This made me tear up. This is exactly how we feel. Some of the things you said I felt like my sister could have said verbatim.

People say a Disney vacation isn't relaxing. And I can't deny that it isn't physically relaxing. Physically it actually is exhausting. But I also have a mind that craves efficiency and works overtime. To have a vacation that distracts my mind is wonderful. And when you have a two year old at the beach, for example, it is also physically exhausting and your mind isn't kept active.

And I love that they do a better job on stuff than I could do. That is very hard for me to find. A place that has systems in place that are better than the systems I would design. Decor that is more over the top themed than I would design. It's just wonderful. And Disneyland did not disappoint us. It is just as wonderful on these important things as the World.

And I agree it helps kids grow too. It's the right amount of concentrated parental attention, outside stimulation, and a relaxed environment.
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Old 05-18-2013, 01:10 PM   #14
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And I agree it helps kids grow too. It's the right amount of concentrated parental attention, outside stimulation, and a relaxed environment.

I couldn't have said it better! So true!
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:44 PM   #15
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Yikes to your Blog crash. Glad you got it up and running again. Enjoyed the 2 updates. I was sad to hear how underwhelming the castle is in DL. And I don't understand the point of Paradise Pier. There are cheesy carnival theme parks everywhere. Why would Disney waste space on that concept? Can't wait to read more.
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