Disney Information Station Logo

Go Back   The DIS Discussion Forums - DISboards.com > Disney Trip Planning Forums > Disney Trip Reports > Completed Trip Reports
Find Hotel Specials & DIScounts
 
facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS UpdatesDIS email updates
Register Chat FAQ Tickers Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read





 
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 04-28-2009, 11:19 PM   #1
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

The Disney Finale: We're Cancelling Christmas PTR (Updated 10/4)

We're cancelling Christmas this year and going to Disneyworld instead! We're so excited for our first ever magical Christmas at Disneyworld. But before we get into specifics, here's the cast of characters:

Me - Annette, 35 and lover of all things Disney. I get in full Disney-planning-mode before vacation and it drives DH crazy! By day I teach preschool, by afternoon I am a professional scrapbooker and by evening I am a volunteer and chauffer. It's a busy life.

DH - Brian, 35, ready to take multiple runs on RnR and ToT! He's a big bad policeman with a teddy bear living inside. He also loves riding his motorcycle.

DS - Chase, 13, my fellow Disney freak. Knows as much as I do, if not more. Has already asked to plan the schedule for our next trip and will be doing that with a little guideance from me. He loves drama and is super smart. He plans to produce movies someday, much in Walt's footsteps, by opening a movie studio with his brother.

DS - Tristan, 11, loves to laugh and laugh during fun rides. I love hearing that! (He'll be leaving the horns and braids home this trip. LOL) He's a Taekwondo freak and loves to play basketball too. His lifes ambitions are to be a Dad and make movies with his brother.

DD - Carissa, 8, our total princess. Loves all things girly and pink. She's her own little strong-willed person but is still sweet and loveable. She loves dance, cheerleading and is excited for her first year of basketball.


And now to the part about the finale. We're quickly realizing how fast our kids are growing. This will be our 3rd WDW trip and we've done DL with them once too. But we all really love Disney and just have never wanted to go anywhere else. Until now. We really want to take the kids to Washington DC, to see all the historical artificats, the monuments, the museums. So we've decided that has to be our next trip. And seeing how we're not made of money and live modestly on a police officer and part-time preschool teacher salary, it will take us a few years to save up the money for another trip. Our oldest is 13 now so we'll probably be able to do DC when he's about 16. I just don't know if we'll have time to sneak in another Disney trip after that and before he moves on to college. So this could very well be the grand finale of Disney for our whole family. Oh, Brian and I will still go together once the kids are gone. And if we win the lottery that will surely change (as if! I only buy tickets 3 or 4 times a year. LOL). So we're treating this trip like it's the last one and planning and splurging like there's no tomorrow. Because for our family, there might not be a tomorrow in WDW.

Anyhow, here's a few pic of us from our WDW trip in January 2008.





Here's a link to that trip report, in case you're interested in reading up a little on who we are and what we like.
Jan/Feb 08 WDW Trip Report: Curiouser and Curiouser

INDEX:
Why cancel Christmas? And do the kids know?
How do I keep it a secret from the kids? And when will I tell them?
When to go?
Here or There???
And the Winner is...
Flying Fits
It's Official...
Sharing the Secret ... how we tell the kids.
The Big Reveal...
Obsessive Planning
Dancing and Thinking
A Dining We Will Go...
Long Time, No Update...
55 Days...

Last edited by pixleyyy; 10-09-2009 at 01:27 PM.
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 04-29-2009, 12:00 AM   #2
hurleysweety
DISPrincess in Training
Makes a mean Monte Cristo
 
hurleysweety's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,612

Woohoo! I want to cancel Christmas too - but we'll see!

Great start. I'm ready for more!
__________________
(me)... (DH)... (baby DD)... (Puppy Otis) --- "Your grace is enough for me" ---
Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
hurleysweety is offline  
|
The DIS
Register to remove

Join Date: 1997
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,000,000
Old 04-29-2009, 01:15 AM   #3
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

Why cancel Christmas? And do the kids know?

Why cancel Christmas? Really, why would any parent of Santa-loving, holiday-cheer-giving, magical-Christmas-memories kids want to cancel their favorite holiday?

The answer is simple. Because Christmas to them is still magical and wonderful and the epitome of childhood happiness to them. And we want to make this one as memorable as we possibly can. Thus our trip to Disneyland this year.

We're a modest family. He's a police officer, I'm a preschool teacher. We both love our jobs but we're not really in it for the money, if you know what I mean. So there is no way that we're going to scrimp and save for a trip and still be able to afford a big Christmas for the kids. It was one or the other and we decided on a magical Christmas with the mouse.

Besides, the kids have 3 sets of grandparents who will fill in where Mom and Dad left off this year, providing most of the video games, music and toys that the kids put on their lists. And they're getting older and it's harder to buy for them anyways, so this helps in that respect too.

That's not to say that the kids won't get anything this year at our house. Santa will still pay them a visit, I'm sure. And we'll buy them a few books and a small gift each child, but it won't be as extravagent as it has been in previous years. They'll survive and will come out of it with some wonderful memories instead of more gifts. A pretty good trade off if you ask me!

Do the kids know? No. They don't. And they won't for a while. But when we finally get around to telling them we'll discuss how we're making the choice to enjoy Disneyland at Christmas instead of buying a bunch of gifts. They all love Disney and ask weekly when we can return, so I don't think it'll be a hard sell.
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 04-29-2009, 11:50 AM   #4
fairykin

i say all kinds of monKey things
i just went *FaFiNkA~CLeeeeeeeeeeK*
 
fairykin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: West Texas
Posts: 3,391

What a great pre trip report!

You have a great family! I can't wait for you to write more!
__________________
fairykin is offline  
Old 04-29-2009, 12:49 PM   #5
DizNee Luver
Luver of all things Disney!
 
DizNee Luver's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Philomath, Oregon
Posts: 9,576

We've talked about doing this before.....doesn't seem strange to me at all!!!

We talked with our older boys (19 & 22) & they said they'd be fine forgoing the gifts to spend a week at Disneyland & as long as "Santa" comes Christmas Eve its no biggie.

Can't wait to see how this report progresses over the months leading up to the big surprise!!!!!

Great pics of the family too!!
__________________
Road Trip 2014HEREClub 33HEREWDW TRHEREOct PTRHERE 2013 Divas #3HERE2012 Holiday Trip HERE
WDW Dec 12 PTR~Cancelled: HERE 2011 Holiday Trip: HEREDivas, Take 2~2012: HEREDiva's TR~2011: HERE
10 of Us Summer Trip~2010: HERE 25th Anniv.TR~2009: HERE

DLR: 1967, 1972, 1984, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2011, 2012, 2012, 2013, 2013, 2014 WDW: 2013


DizNee Luver is offline  
Old 04-30-2009, 06:34 PM   #6
ukstitch
I'm not sure I'm quite your average, typical male
I think I need to eat some humble pie
I've got a few hours of DIS chatting ahead of me tonight
 
ukstitch's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 5,487

You have no idea how happy I am to see this PTR here

Hope you have a great trip - I might sit down and put together my own little PTR soon as I'm quite excited about my own December trip but didn't want to write it yet as I thought it would be too early. Having seen this one though, I no know it's not
__________________
Check out my personal photography pages - feel free to use / share my photos freely according to the cc-nc-by-sa license

Facebook | Flickr | 500px

ukstitch is offline  
Old 04-30-2009, 07:15 PM   #7
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

Quote:
Originally Posted by ukstitch View Post
You have no idea how happy I am to see this PTR here

Hope you have a great trip - I might sit down and put together my own little PTR soon as I'm quite excited about my own December trip but didn't want to write it yet as I thought it would be too early. Having seen this one though, I no know it's not
Never too early to start a PTR. I was too excited to wait, as I'm sure you are! Now, if only December weren't half a year away! LOL
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 04-30-2009, 11:38 PM   #8
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

How do I keep it a secret from the kids? And when will I tell them?

How do I keep it a secret from the kids? That is the question. How do I plan, plan and more plan, peruse the DIS and make arrangements without the kids knowing? The answer is, I don't know.

My rather astute 12yo ds must already have an inkling in his mind. I am never on the DISboards as much as when we are planning a vaction. Yet he hasn't asked me about it yet. And when he does I'll ask him questions right back, like "Why do you think that?" or "That would be nice, wouldn't it?" without really committing either way.

Now, the beans almost got spilled when my 8yo dd looked at what I was typing (the beginning of this trip report) and went around the house saying "Mom's cancelling Christmas". DOH! Of course, the boys didn't believe her one bit and I don't think she believed it either. Whew.

When will I tell the kids? Another good question, but one to which I don't have a good answer. I don't want to tell them too soon and worry that if something catastrophic happens that we have to un-tell them. KWIM? And as much as I'd like to make it a "hey kids, lets go to the airport and fly somewhere" surprise I know that won't happen. There has to be some middle ground here.

I did attempt a surprise to tell the kids we're going to WDW. It was a flop. Seriously! I don't know if it was the timing or what, but it just didn't work. I took all this time to make a sign that said we were going to WDW. I cut it into 3 puzzle pieces and hid them around the house where we have Disney stuff (pictures, memorabilia, etc.). Gave the kids each a clue for their piece. They had to find it and bring it back then assemble the puzzle. They did, they read it and then went "oh" (OK, all except my Disney-freak 12yo ds, who went YEAH! and jumped up and down).

Sooooo ... I'm on the lookout for a REALLY FUN way to tell the kids we're going to Disneyland for Christmas. I won't tell them until at least October, but I'm compiling ideas now. If you have one, please share!
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 05-02-2009, 09:58 PM   #9
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

When to go?

The dates for our Christmas trip are still up in the air. I've reserved the Hojo for two different weeks in December and now have to decide which one to go with. I want to go earlier in the month, before it gets busy, but I'm torn between two dates.

Nov. 30-Dec. 4 (give or take a day on either end)
Dec. 7-Dec. 11 (give or take a day on either end)

I know I have to keep in mind the Candelight Processional on Dec. 4 & 5. I also vaguely remember someone saying the DLR closes early a few nights for cast member parties. Does anyone know what nights those are?

Just trying to plan the right time to get the most out of our vacation.

Any tips?
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 06-18-2009, 12:29 AM   #10
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

Here or there???

So allow me a moment to indulge myself. Trip planning is something I really throw myself into and really do enjoy doing. But it's the big decisions that are the hardest for me to make.

So, all was going well in my little trip-planning world. Our savings account has been steadily growing, a little bit at a time, and it looks like the vacation is a sure thing. Then the van breaks down. Holy cow... if I have to dip into our vacation money ... . But we got it fixed and it didn't cost as much as we figured. Crisis averted. Whew!

So I'm on my merry little trip-planning way again when another bump in the road comes along. But this one is a bigger bump for me. You see, last night I got an email from Disney with a PIN code for free dining in December at WDW. Ugh! Seriously?!? Do I really need more to think about? But think about it I do and eventually I call and get prices and now I'm sitting here entirely undecided.

Option 1: Go to Disneyland. By my calculations we'll spend roughly $3500 for 6 days and 6 nights of Disney fun. That includes all the transfers and some spending money, as well as a small sum each day for food. The small sum will buy us mostly counter service meals with only 1 or 2 table service meals the entire trip.

Option 2: Go to Disneyworld. Stay onsite (I've never stayed onsite), eat all their yummy food (one table service, one counter service and one snack each day) and take the sting out of our last almost-disaster trip there (my MIL has health and bad attitude issues and made the vacation nearly disastrous because of them). Spend about $4000 for 7 days and 7 nights of fun at the world.

Option 3: Stay home, save the money and just go on with life as normal. Right, like I'm even entertaining that though.

So, here's my pros and cons.

Disneyland
Pros: Closer to home (no time change/jet lag), haven't been since 2006, we really liked it then and had a great time, love how close the parks are to one another.
Cons: Smaller, less to do (though we get to do our faves lots and lots of times), walking to and from hotel, no Christmas party to attend, eating counter service the whole time (I am soooo tired of burgers, chicken and pizza by the time I go home! LOL).

Disneyworld
Pros: Huge - lots to see and do, Mickey's Very Merry Christmas party (I've never been), the fabulous dining plan (we almost always eat counter-service while on vacations, so this would allow us to eat table service and enjoy several character meals), getting to enjoy it without MIL (who I truly love but has too many issues to vacation with), Rockin' Rollercoaster (yes, it deserves it's own pro mention).
Cons: Jet lag and spending most of a day flying to and from (we're in Oregon ... it's a long flight!), were just there in Jan. of 2008, hotel we could afford offers only bus service to the parks (not as good as the rest of WDW transportation), more money ... even if it is only slightly more, no California Screamin (again, deserves it's own mention).

So now I'm at an impasse. DH isn't much help deciding, just keeps telling me we need to decide. Sheesh, lots of help there! Of course, it doesn't help that it's summer and the kids are always around when we try to talk about it. Talking in code around a 12yo doesn't work so well anymore, so we really haven't been able to talk about. The kids don't know yet, as I don't want to share anything until it's set in stone, so they are no help either.

Soooooo ... what do you think? I'd love to hear opinions. Maybe I'm missing something here...

HELP!!!
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 06-18-2009, 01:27 PM   #11
kandyk
Mouseketeer
 
kandyk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Auburn, WA
Posts: 332

I love this idea of cancelling Christmas. I just haven't been brave enough to do it...yet! Our DS is also 12 and I think he is almost to the age where he would be OK with skipping Christmas. Maybe another year or two and we will take the plunge.

Decisions, decisions...

I am leaning towads Disneyland for you for a couple of reasons. First you haven't been there since 2006, there have been several changes. We live in Washington so I know how you feel about traveling cross country and jet lag. Almost two whole days will be lost to it, but from Oregon its only a couple of hours flight...easy and you still have most of the days to play. Also $500 is $500, maybe you can add something special to the Disneyland trip like doing the Christmas tour or even adding an extra day or a Character meal or two?

If you were really looking forward to your Disneyland trip, I say stick too it! I am sure you won't be disappointed.
__________________
kandyk is offline  
Old 06-18-2009, 03:54 PM   #12
bumbershoot
DIS Veteran
 
bumbershoot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Tacoma WA
Posts: 46,121

Quote:
Originally Posted by pixleyyy View Post
I know I have to keep in mind the Candelight Processional on Dec. 4 & 5. I also vaguely remember someone saying the DLR closes early a few nights for cast member parties. Does anyone know what nights those are?
The parties tend to be the Mon and Tues after the CP weekend. The CP tends to be either the first weekend, or the weekend after the first full week, of December (I cannot remember which one).

But it's only Disneyland that closes early for the parties; DCA is kept open later. And since your big draw is Screamin', well, I doubt that "having" to go to DCA more will be that painful.



I'd stick with DLR!


Now, about the pricing, are you looking at packages only, or a la carte? Have you thought about having one person get an AP, to get the discounts? With an older group of kids and a family of 5, that discount could add up! Then there might be a great rate onsite, or the AP 20% discount at HoJo (or even the special entertainment book rate for HoJo Anaheim).

Anyway, if you've only looked at packages, be sure to price it a la carte as well.
__________________
-molly + robert + eamon (10!!)

DLR '05-'09 found within this link
DLR 7,9,12 2012 Universal Feb '12 DLR Dec '11 and Feb '12

Made weight goal 1yr8m8days after starting...currently working to maintain 85 lb loss thanks to Weight Watchers!
bumbershoot is offline  
Old 06-18-2009, 05:10 PM   #13
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

Quote:
Originally Posted by bumbershoot View Post

Now, about the pricing, are you looking at packages only, or a la carte? Have you thought about having one person get an AP, to get the discounts? With an older group of kids and a family of 5, that discount could add up! Then there might be a great rate onsite, or the AP 20% discount at HoJo (or even the special entertainment book rate for HoJo Anaheim).

Anyway, if you've only looked at packages, be sure to price it a la carte as well.
Nope, that's not a package it's a la carte. I booked the hotel with the entertainment rate (spending the extra $$ for Disney view), flight is through the special on JetBlue and then we have transfers, food, park tix and spending. I don't think we could do it any cheaper than that, with the exception of giving up the view.
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 07-04-2009, 11:24 AM   #14
pixleyyy
DIS Veteran
 
pixleyyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,312

And the award goes to...

After much consideration, much back and forth and debate with the family (stealthily with the kids, as they still don't know - I just proposed the hypothetical "which one is your fave") we still couldn't make a decision. The kids were leaning towards Disneyland. DH liked it too. I think I was the only one secretly leaning toward WDW. What it ended up coming down to was the fact that there is so much renovation happening at DCA right now and that we'd miss some of the big stuff by a few months (namely the "World of Color" show). In the end we decided to book ...
DISNEYWORLD!

We booked December 3 - 10 at the POR. We've got free dining, 8 days of park passes (no hopper option this time - that was money we wasted last trip as we didn't park hop) and 7 nights in the hotel.

We're planning on either flying a very early flight or the red-eye. The very early flight leaves 6am our time and gets us there 4pm EST. But after DME, checking into the hotel, etc. we might not get anything done that day. And we'd still have to adjust to the time change.

The advantage of the red-eye is that we get in at 9am EST and have a whole day to spend at the park. We also adjust to the time change quickly because our sleep schedule is so messed up from the start. The disadvantage is that we just don't sleep on the plane. Brian and I were so exhausted after our last red-eye flight that we vowed never to do it again. Yet here we are, thinking about it... that extra day at Disney makes all the difference.

Beyond that, we're doing good on getting prepared. Our savings account keeps growing and we're optimistic that we'll have the financial part taken care of.

Now, as a little side-note, we've kept our ressies at DLR just in case a financial issue comes up and we can't afford the extra money for WDW. I don't anticipate that coming up, but it's our backup plan.
pixleyyy is offline  
Old 07-04-2009, 11:52 AM   #15
Sherry E
Willing victim of the Disney Snowball Effect...
Okay so after a coffee and lunch break I am back!
 
Sherry E's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 15,090
DISboards Moderator

I think if this is now a Pre-TR for a WDW excursion, we have to move this over to the WDW Trip Reports section.....unless DLR is still on the table??
__________________
**...Rockin' my Disney Side since 1972 ... Now taking on the holidays, one photo (and one Superthread!) at a time...**

Pumpkins, Peppermint, Pastels and...Club 33!!! - (A new chapter begins... Many photos and wacky tales, coming soon to a Trip Report thread near you!)
And for some non-holiday seaside fun in the sun ~~ 2012 Catalina Island/Avalon Trip Report - My Solo Day Trip, in Photos (LOTS of Photos!)- 7/21/12 & Highlights from 2013 & 2014
Sherry E is offline  
 



Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
It's a Great Big Beautiful Trip Report Circusgirl Completed Trip Reports 323 05-18-2009 11:39 PM
I think we ate at every character meal.. TRIP REPORT w/pics! FINISHED!!!!!!! that's nice Completed Trip Reports 400 05-11-2009 08:49 AM
First Case of Swine Flu Reported @ Disney Joeguitar Disney Rumors and News 41 05-04-2009 11:50 PM
Conflicting reports of Swine flu reported at DisneyWorld traviesojmt Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies 315 04-29-2009 07:11 PM

facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates
GET OUR DIS UPDATES DELIVERED BY EMAIL



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:21 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 1997-2014, Werner Technologies, LLC. All Rights Reserved.