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Old 06-26-2013, 05:02 PM   #1
Denovagirl
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Long time planner, first time visitor!



Hi All! As my title suggests, I am planning mine and my families first EVER trip to Disney World! I can't tell you how many dream vacations I have made on the Disney site, but have never been able to book. Now, I am finally going, and I must say that I am sure it will be worth the wait. Being able to go for my first time with my children I think will make it all the more magical!

My trip is in less than 2 months now, so we are getting pretty close. I have been reading so many awesome trip reports to really familiarize myself with the parks and get myself even more hyped up as the trip draws near. It was in my browsing the DIS boards that I discovered you lovely folks over here at the Pre Trip Report forum! What fun, I had to be a part of this. Plus, Disney seems to be ALL I can talk about these days, and people here come looking for that, so how perfect for me to do a PTR as well, right!?!?!?!

Okay, so there's some trip background, lets jump right in! First off, going on this trip is my little family...


My hubbster, Chris, a handsome and hardworking Police Officer (you should see him in uniform ) and myself, Terri, a proud stay-at-home, soon to be home-schooling mom!


Our beautiful girls, Olivia, 4 & Maddie, 1


And my in-laws, the very creative and just as excited as me, Margo & her funny hubby Bob


The sis-in-law, Laci, a creative, wonderful, autistic woman

Here are the deets of the trip-

Coming and Going: Tuesday, August 20th Wednesday, August 28th
We will fly from San Antonio, about a half hour from my home of Boerne, at 2:40pm, late, I know. But it is the ONLY non-stop of the day that is offered, and with a 1 year old, I def want a non-stop!! We originally planned to leave the following day, and are now leaving a day early just for this flight, as we did not want it to cut into our park time the following day!! We have booked the magical express! We plan to use Disney transportation while there.

Staying at: Art of Animation!
I cannot express how excited I am for my 4 year old to stay here! Her favorite Princess (and mine!!!) is Ariel, and we booked the standard Little Mermaid room! I know that staying at the value might not have as many perks, but after countless hours researching I have decided that it really is just PERFECT for us right now. My kids are young and will go nutso over the over the top theming! The place is brand new and looks very nice, and I love the characters that are featured here! I am so excited about leaving a day earlier than originally planned because we are now hoping to just tour our hotel, swim, and enjoy it our first night. One of my original fears is that we would be staying at this awesome place and we would not have time to explore it! We have A LOT planned! More on that later...

Park stuffs: Oh, the places we will go!
We are not doing any park hoppers this time. The kiddos are young and we hope to go at a slower pace so I think it will not be needed. We plan on doing 3 days at MK, 1 each at AK, HS, and EPCOT, as well as a day park hopping at UO & IOA.

Dining: DDP, for sure!
I am all about having as much of the trip paid for beforehand so the DDP was a simple decision for me! We will be partaking in some expensive character meals and I like that its already taken care of and I wont have any sticker shock. I know it may not have been a huge savings for our family, but the convenience is more than worth it to me! I am looking forward to our dining at Disney more than anything I think! We have made our ADRs (months ago), more on that later.

Other details: This and that
We have rented a stroller from kingdom, ours is GIANT and HEAVY and I am not about to travel with it!!! We will soon be placing a grocery order as well for some snacks, water, and room stuff. I have also pinterested my heart out and we have matching shirts, Mickey Mail, welcome gifts and more!! You will also have to wait for a later post for more on those fun bits of pixie dust!

Well, I think that is a good start! I hope youll come back for more on my first ever Disney planning journey! Please leave me tips! Its my first time!!!!

Table of Contents:
Long Time Planner, First Time Visitor
The Daily Grind!
The Death March
Gearing up for The Mouse!
Pixie Dust
The Box
Aound the World
T-Shirt Tutorial
New Mickey Apparel!
Traveling in Style
Snack Attack
Mickey Notes
Window Love
One More Month!
To Wear, or Not to Wear...
Mailbox = LOVE
August: Best. Month. Ever.
Departure Day Details
Packing, Packing, Packing
One Week
Ahhh! MY TRIP REPORT IS HERE!



Last edited by Denovagirl; 09-01-2013 at 07:09 PM.
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Old 06-26-2013, 05:19 PM   #2
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Joining in! Am I first??!! Great intro! Can't wait to read more

Olivia and Maddie are just adorable! I think AoA is the PERFECT resort for you. Yes, it is a value...but it is by far the COOLEST value there. The kids splash area will be so much fun for the girls. The food court has the best options on property, IMHO. You will have a blast!
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July'12 TR: July 2012. Yes it was hot. Yes it was crowded. Yes it was FUN!
August'13 TR: Mom...am I supposed to have shoes on??

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Old 06-26-2013, 06:12 PM   #3
Denovagirl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solana131 View Post
Joining in! Am I first??!! Great intro! Can't wait to read more

Olivia and Maddie are just adorable! I think AoA is the PERFECT resort for you. Yes, it is a value...but it is by far the COOLEST value there. The kids splash area will be so much fun for the girls. The food court has the best options on property, IMHO. You will have a blast!
You are first! Yay!

I am glad to have your expert advice! What is IMHO? Haha, I am trying to think....but can't. Showing my newness I am sure!
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Old 06-26-2013, 05:45 PM   #4
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I am joining in too. This is our first trip as well. I have visited Boerne, Texas. My kids' greatgrandmother lived there forever. She died a few years ago. She had an old ranch with tons of scorpions. I still have to shake my shoes because of those visits. Looking forward to reading about your plans.
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:15 PM   #5
Denovagirl
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Originally Posted by OregonMomToWDW View Post
I am joining in too. This is our first trip as well. I have visited Boerne, Texas. My kids' greatgrandmother lived there forever. She died a few years ago. She had an old ranch with tons of scorpions. I still have to shake my shoes because of those visits. Looking forward to reading about your plans.
Bahahahaha! I am dying laughing about the scorpions, ahhh, our legacy!

It's even more funny because ALL of my friends facebook posts lately have been pictures of the scorpions they have been finding in their houses! Luckily, I live in the actual city and we don't really see any at my home!! I am terrified of them!!

First trippers rule!
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Old 06-26-2013, 05:50 PM   #6
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I'm joining in! Making our first trip in a little over two weeks! The planning has been super exciting. I can't wait to read more!
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:13 PM   #7
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YAY! You sound just like me!!! My kids are 7 and 3 and we aren't going until next year......see also planning a LOOOOOOOOONG time. I have already started autograph books, made necklaces, and made my mom a surprise. She has made t-shirts and minnie ears. Say it with me "way ahead of schedule!!!!!" Oh well, we have to have something to do for the next year right

Can't wait to hear more about your plans and hopefully a TR after...!
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:18 PM   #8
Denovagirl
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Originally Posted by sweetpeaandevie View Post
YAY! You sound just like me!!! My kids are 7 and 3 and we aren't going until next year......see also planning a LOOOOOOOOONG time. I have already started autograph books, made necklaces, and made my mom a surprise. She has made t-shirts and minnie ears. Say it with me "way ahead of schedule!!!!!" Oh well, we have to have something to do for the next year right

Can't wait to hear more about your plans and hopefully a TR after...!
This is me! Haha, I say there's no such thing as too early. I am doing ALL of that too!! The more time you have the more prepped you will be, and you can spread out all those extra touches without going broke!!!! I hope I have some more ideas for you.. I am about to go ahead and do my next post, just because I have it ready to go almost anyway. 2 in 1 day shows my excitement!

First trippers rule!
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:16 PM   #9
Denovagirl
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Originally Posted by carissa1970 View Post
I'm joining in! Making our first trip in a little over two weeks! The planning has been super exciting. I can't wait to read more!
Yay! This is so validating!!! Haha, I have been talking Disney non-stop for months and everyone is tired of me! So I am happy to have a place where people go searching for more Disney!!

First trippers rule!
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denovagirl

You are first! Yay!

I am glad to have your expert advice! What is IMHO? Haha, I am trying to think....but can't. Showing my newness I am sure!
In My Humble Opinion

So many first timers.....yay! You all are going to have sooooo much fun. And you are WAY ahead of the gang just by being on the DIS. There is just so much good advice on here.

Search for the "frump" reports on here. I got a ton of yummy snack ideas from them. And I even got to meet one of the Frumps last July. Kristen is a sweetheart....made me feel old, but she was nice. Lots of useful info on their reports and they are very entertaining.
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1985,1989,1992 Offsite
Feb'12 Poly July'12 POFQ Aug'13 Poly June'14 GF



Feb'12 TR: How do I go back to a world that doesn't have fireworks every night?
July'12 TR: July 2012. Yes it was hot. Yes it was crowded. Yes it was FUN!
August'13 TR: Mom...am I supposed to have shoes on??
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:02 PM   #11
Denovagirl
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The Daily Grind, Y'all!

I am such a nerd, right? 2 posts in 1 day!?!?!? Haha, that is excitement, y'all. And yes, I am from the great state of Texas and I do use the word y'all, often. But I will try to refrain. For those who enjoy very frequent updates, you can expect a lot, quickly. I am close to my trip and very super crazy excited, so #1- I am running low on time, and #2- it's all I think about and this is an ahhh-mazing outlet.

Okay, so here is what the day to day is looking like!!! I cant wait to get feedback on this!

Tue. Aug 20th Travel Day!



We will be finishing packing and trying to keep ourselves busy this morning so that time will hopefully not stand still! We can leave for the airport about 12:45pm, and the plane leaves about 2:40pm!! Non-stop to Orlando baby! Then we will catch the Magical Express to our lovely resort. I am hoping that everyone can have a grand time looking around while I secretly go to the room and set up the welcome gifts for the girls! We are just hanging around this evening, so pictures, swimming and excitement will ensue! If we have time and all feel up to it, perhaps DTD....that is really a possibility for any day. Dinner will be OOT and most likely at the hotel or DTD.

[Sidenote: I have been to Orlando on a work related trip once, while there we went to DTD every single day, and it was my first taste of the Magic!! I LOOOOVE it at DTD and will make sure to go multiple times this trip as well! Sadly, we did not visit any Disney parks or stay at a Disney Resort, but we did go to Universal IOA, more on that later....]

We will be wearing these fun guys today:




Wed. Aug 21st Magic Kingdom!



Because really where else should you start your FIRST EVER Disney World vacation, right?!?!?!?! No ADRs today, because we originally had planned to get here midday, before we booked the extra night, so we will most likely pay OOP for lunch, and do a QS credit for dinner somewhere, any suggestions in MK???? Please! We will take our time exploring and learning our way around, no need to rush, we're coming back here 2 more times! Yay!

This was to be the day we wore our Plane shirts, but now we will be wearing these lovely shirts I picked up at Old Navy! (The girls is hard to see, but its a patriotic looking Minnie Mouse! Adorbs!)




Thur. Aug 22nd- Hollywood Studios!



From here on out we are getting up EARLY and catching the bus to be at the parks BEFORE they open!! None of our days planned have EMHs in the am on purpose- I want to avoid those parks and not have to get up even earlier. But I am a stickler for being on time, and my family knows it. So I can confidently say we will be watching rope drop and dashing to Toy Story Mania! We have lunch ADRs for 50s PRIME TIME CAFÉ today! I am so excited for this! I picked it because of the big portions, and fun environment, and I cannot wait! We will hang out and try to do all we can until we are ready to leave this day, if we can hang in there maybe see Fantasmic, or possibly end up at DTD, or go back and swim.

We will be sporting these fine works of art! (My fave!)




Fri. Aug 23rd Animal Kingdom!


Again, there for rope drop and no plan really, except working around seeing The Lion King show and Nemo. I am sure we can fit in our must dos here, because there are only a few. Also, no ADRs in the park, so suggestions on a good QS lunch would be helpful! Since the park closes early at 5, we have booked a fun treat and will be heading to the Ft Wilderness campgrounds to see the HOOP DE DOO MUSICAL REVUE! I know our family will love this!! And all you can eat plus free wine or sangria and beer = happy adults as well!!

Our outfits for the day: (adults dont have the bow, just the ribbon across)




Sat. Aug. 24th- Magic Kingdom again!!!



Yay! This is THE day, the PRINCESS day, to be exact!!!!!! We will have some major fun today, we have a morning appt at the BBB booked for Olivia! She already knows because I am too excited. We have watched youtube videos, looked at pictures and everything! We are going to do the whole hair/nails/makeup package and add on the dress. No big package, because that comes with photos and we will already get them for free with the PHOTOPASS+ that I am pre-ordering! We are going all out this trip because it is our first, and I KNOW Olivia will never forget this day. Late that evening we have dinner in the Castle with Cinderella, again, a moment she will never forget. Lunch will be QS, and I am hoping maybe Be Our Guest, one or more days we will dine QS there because I couldn't get a dinner ADR, but that's okay because their menu looks a little fancy, and I am more simple kinda foods anyhow!

Olivia will be sporting a Minnie shirt she owns for the first part of her day until she gets her gown. Maddie will be wearing this minus the sleeves that I cut off because it will be hot y'all!!



The rest of us will be wearing various Disney shirts we already own.


Sun. Aug. 25th- EPCOT



Again, rope drop, spend the morning in Future World, and then QS for lunch, I was originally thinking I would HAVE TO go to a World Showcase country for a meal, because why would I ever pass up awesome worldly cuisines, then I saw the Sunshine Seasons QS menu and, I must say, that is looking goooooood. What do y'all think? So we will just browse and decide there, I think. Possibly go back to the resort for naps today because I REAAAAAALLY want to see the World Showcase at night, and stay late for Illuminations! Our dinner ADRs are at the BIERGARTEN! I am so excited, the hubby is from German decent and we celebrate German heritage A LOT in the Texas hill country, so this will be fun and the kids will love dancing to the Ooompa music. Plus, who doesnt love a buffet!?!?

Shirts for the day:




Mon. Aug. 26th- Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure!




I have been to IOA before on a work trip, as I mentioned earlier, but I am obsessed with Harry Potter; so I will be going again. Plus Olivia loves HP too, so she has to experience this. We were originally only going to do IOA to save $$ and our feet until we saw the newly finished Simpsons World. We are now doing both. Haha, mine is a family that religiously watches the Simpsons on Sunday nights and we simply cannot miss this chance to be in Springfield and have a drink at Moes! Plus there are fun things we liked at both anyway. I plan on buying the tickets through DESTINATIONS IN FLORIDA, because they sale the one day tickets that include shuttle transport from Disney to Universal and back. No meal credits will be used today, we will dine at those parks and pay OOP to eat at THE THREE BROOMSTICKS for sure, and possibly somewhere on the City Walk that night. (Margaritaville!?!? Because I am SURE I will NEED one by then!!) Also important to mention that this is a VERY special day, because it is MY BIRTHDAY!!! Yay! So I will be living it up buying myself many presents I am sure. I plan to sport my birthday button the whole week at Disney though, because why not? I am going to live every minute up celebrating Disney style!

Our attire:




Tues. Aug. 27th- Magic Kingdom, again, again!



Because where else would I want to end my last day of my first ever trip to Disney!! {Sigh} Our last day at the parks, how sad. But we wont let it get us down because this is our Pirate day!!! We have super early ADRs at CHEF MICKEY to say goodbye to the beloved characters. Lots of photos, and going back to our faves. I have mid-morning appts for Olivia and my sis-in-law (who is more like a teenager or tween) at the PIRATES LEAGUE. After the makeovers we can relax, and possibly go back to the resort for a rest. Again, QS suggestions for today would be appreciated. We will be at the park late to see the fireworks and hopefully be able to snag a ADR for the TOMORROWLAND TERRACE FIREWORKS DESSERT PARTY. This is something I really want to do! What a perfect way to end our time in Disney, right? I want my last Disney moments to be in MK looking up at the beautiful fireworks and wishing upon a star....all while pigging out and going into a sugar coma to dull the pain of leaving!

The awesome shirts:




Wed. Aug. 28th- Travel day L



Back to Texas, y'all...and into Disney depression. I will never again have a first trip to Disney World. {Tear} We will need to leave the resort about 11am to catch the Magical Express back to MCO for our flight back home to Texas. A sad, sad day indeed. But heres hoping for an awesome bounce back offer this day to perk me up. I am planning on taking 'down payment' cash, just in case. Do people do that?!


*Most of the photos of Disney in and other places in this post were from a google search, obviously I have not yet been myself, so I have none to represent where we will be going! *

P.S. My Disney Pinterest board has the links for how to make all the shirts I did, and you can find it here!!

**Edit: I added a quick tutorial on the shirts here in the thread, you can find it here!

Last edited by Denovagirl; 07-08-2013 at 05:19 PM.
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Old 06-26-2013, 08:15 PM   #12
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Well I have to say, for first timers you are very well organized.
We will be staying at Pop the same week you will be at AofA.
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Old 06-26-2013, 08:27 PM   #13
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Also love the shirts!!! very cute!

Recommendations for MK quick service.... Columbia Harbour House or Pecos Bill's - those are our favourites.

Recommendations for AK quick service..... we love Yak n Yeti, but I also know that a lot of people recommend Flame Tree BBQ.

I hope you love Biergarten as much as we do. We went there twice on our last trip. My MIL is German and my kids have totally embraced the German culture so they thought it was so much fun! I'm sure your girls will love the dancing!
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Old 06-26-2013, 09:01 PM   #14
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Hello fellow Texan! I just want to say I am very impressed with your planning!! I have been planning our trip since the day my daughter was born (Disney site even had our old address from when I was pregnant when I went to book) so my husband knew better than to even question when I said her 5th birthday is coming up, time for Disney! I am just glad I found the Disboards last week or I might have drove him crazy with everything Mickey

No words of advice since it is my first Disney "vacation" but I just wanted to say Howdy
(We are driving from SA - we must be crazy)
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Old 06-26-2013, 09:43 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by poofsgirl View Post
Hello fellow Texan! I just want to say I am very impressed with your planning!! I have been planning our trip since the day my daughter was born (Disney site even had our old address from when I was pregnant when I went to book) so my husband knew better than to even question when I said her 5th birthday is coming up, time for Disney! I am just glad I found the Disboards last week or I might have drove him crazy with everything Mickey

No words of advice since it is my first Disney "vacation" but I just wanted to say Howdy
(We are driving from SA - we must be crazy)
HOWDY! Ohhh! SA!! You are my neighbor!!!

No driving is not crazy!!! I would totally do that over flying any day, even with my young ones!!! The only issue I have is that the hubby gets a limited number of days off and I just can't use those extra days of travel when I could be in the parks. But one day I will totally road trip it!
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