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Old 12-29-2010, 11:14 AM   #1
harleyquinn
Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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She's STILL too young to go! Christmas w/a 17mo! UPDATE 2/5!

She's not too young!! I've created a bit of confusion with the TR title. My DD had a wonderful trip both times we went to WDW and so did we. My title refers to all of the wet blankets that told me I was crazy. If you are contimplating a trip for your under 2 yo, I'm sure you've come across at least one wet blanket.

Welcome! If you've come looking for tips about taking a baby/toddler to WDW, you've come to the right place! My August TR and PTR (in my signature) are full of tons of imformation and details about our trip with a 13 mo. They aren't very long threads (not a ton of chatter), and very readable.

So on to Christmas! The very short and short-on-information PTR is in my signature.

I feel so blessed to have been able to not only go to WDW twice in one year, but to share those trips with my beautiful DD and wonderful DH. On to introductions!
Me: Sarah 30 year old Children's Librarian. Disney-a-holic. This is my 8th trip to WDW since 2003. I had never been as a child.
DH: Justin (The_Horned_King) 31, middle school Art teacher. Responsible for my Disney-a-holicness. This is his 9th trip to WDW; went twice as a child.
And the star of the show DD: Lilliana. She turned 17 months on the trip. This is her second adventure at WDW.

DD and I at Ohana in August:

DD and DH in Toontown in August:


In the past we've stayed at POR 3 times, POFQ 1, POP 1, ASSports 2. DH stayed offsite and camped as a kid.

For this adventure we rented vacation club points and stayed deluxe (plus) for the very first time. We stayed at a studio in the Boardwalk Villas.

This is my second trip at Christmas time. My mom and I went the second week of December in 2008 when I was 8 weeks pregnant with DD. It was a nightmare. I was super sick and super hormonal and missed DH like crazy.

We stayed December 18-24 and drove from Cleveland.

I used TourGuideMike for the trip and also tried out RideMax for the first time.

I can't wait to tell you all about our adventure!!

Last edited by harleyquinn; 02-05-2011 at 09:47 AM.
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Old 12-29-2010, 12:02 PM   #2
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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I've been a loyal TGM customer for a couple of years now. While the outdatedness of a lot of the articles drives me nuts, I find the message boards wonderful and the membership is more than paid for by joining a photopass share.

I was very concerned about crazy crowd levels, so I decided to try RideMax. I will not purchase it again. We are very much not a "be here at this time and ride this and then this and then this," kind of family. We are a get there right after rope drop and leave in the afternoon type of family.

If you've read the other report, you know that I was SUPER organized for the August trip. I was sooo concerned about doing everything I could to make a trip with a baby successful. This time? Not so much! I guess since I had done so much 4 months earlier, my brain just let this trip slide. Besides, getting ready for a trip right before Christmas is really crazy.

DH was sick the week before we were supposed to leave and I caught it too. So we both stayed home, and I was able to get a lot of packing done. We managed to get all the Christmas presents ready to go. The plan was to celebrate with the family on the 26th.

The weather forecast drove me nuts. Most of you have probably heard how cold it's been. We had layers and layers and layers. I'm amazed we fit it all into 3 suitcases.

Here was the packing list:
Car
1. GPS
2. DVD player/DVDs
3. Music
4. Toys (magnadoodle, bubbles, glow sticks)
5. Blankets/pillow
6. Baby neck pillow

Toiletries
1. Shampoo
2. Body wash
3. Deodorant
4. Toothbrush/paste
5. Hairbrush
6. Face wash/lotion
7. Contacts/solution/cases
8. Glasses/cases
9. Hair ties
10. Shaving stuff
11. Lotion
12. Feminine junk

Weather related
1. Sun block (baby & adult)
2. Hats/gloves
3. blanket for stroller
4. Water/water bottle carabineer
5. Ponchos
6. Sunglasses
7. Chapstick


Misc.
1. Cellphone/charger
2. Cameras/chargers/SD cards
3. Ziplocks
4. Meds (immodium, gas x, advil/Tylenol/Excedrin)
5. Moleskin, blister bandaids, bandaid footrub
6. Baggalini/fanny pack
7. All in one laundry sheets
8. Gum/candy
9. DS/chargers/games
10. Journal for trip report
12. Ponchos
13. Shoes (crocs, tevas)
14. Ear plugs
16. ADR List
17. Credit cards/cash/Disney rewards card
18. Touring plans

Baby List
1. Diapers
2. Wipes
3. Food—graham crackers, cheerios, tube purees, yogurt bites
4. Sippy cups/cup tether
5. Wet bag
6. Outfits prebagged
7. Toys—Mickey, little people?
8. Tiny Diner
9. Stroller/ray shade/rain cover/stroller bag
11. Baby shampoo/wash/lotion/powder
12. Swim diapers
14. Wash cloths
15. Hairbrush
16. Baby medicines (teething tablets, motrin)
17. Teethers

(Ignore the missing numbers. They are things I deleted from the last trip!)
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Old 12-29-2010, 12:13 PM   #3
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I'm jumping on because your title caught my eye. My oldest daughter (4) took her first trip to Disney at 11 months old and has been 13 times since. My youngest daughter (20 months) took her first trip at 3 months and has been 6 times since. I love all the memories that I have of them enjoying Disney even though they won't remember those first trips I sure do! Can't wait to see and hear more.
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Old 12-29-2010, 12:26 PM   #4
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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December 17
DH headed off to work, and I had pretty much everything done. Lily and I went to her last class of Gymboree and stopped at my library for a bit. She decided to take her nap around 1 and I took one with her since I had no idea what the ride would be like.

DH got home around 3 and we did the last minute things you do, stopped at Wendy's and we were on the road by 4.

The drive for the August trip was exhausting for me as I was constantly entertaining Lily. (see that trip report for a list of all the stuff I brought!) She would only settle for a DVD for short periods. This drive was so much better. I even got to drive a few times to give DH a break. She still perfered to have me in the back with her and naps were a bit of a struggle, but it was so much easier overall.

I started off the drive. The stupid GPS detoured us again for some odd reason (see first TR) and I ended up driving through 25 mph streets for a bit instead of going through Akron. I wanted to ignore the detour but DH said we should just follow it.

Driving through the mountains of VA and WV in the dark was awful. We hoped to make it just into NC, but we ended up stopping at a Hampton Inn less than an hour from the NC border. We managed to get in 7.5 hours the first day, and we were pretty happy about that.

Lily woke up early the next morning. She totally knew what was going on. She kept saying, "bye, bye" and walking to the door of the room. Hampton Inn's have fresh waffles you make yourself in the morning. They were very nummy. We hit a little rain in the afternoon, but everything went really smoothly until we hit Orlando.

It was around 5 when we hit downtown Orlando. The sky was completely clear, but the road was a MESS. We saw NINE accidents. I have no idea what the heck was happening, but it was terrible. I think it took us 40 minutes to go what should have been 15. There was something going on at Amway (I think?) arena, so that explained some of the traffic, but even once we got past that, we kept coming across more accidents.

Why in the world do FL drivers feel the need to cut across stop and go traffic? I'm not talking about trying to exit, but cutting back and forth and getting no where (and causing accidents). I could never live around that area. And none of the accidents were actually on the road by the time we got to them. In Ohio when this happens, traffic picks up right before the accident and people move along. In FL there's traffic for another mile after the accident as people actually STOP to rubber neck. Ugh!

Enough of that!
We made it to the BoardWalk with only one wrong turn! I was SOOO excited to be staying there.

One big thing I learned from the last TR was to take more pictures! We depended on the Photopass too much and then it took FOREVER to get it from the share.
So the next post will let you bask in photo goodness!
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Old 12-29-2010, 12:28 PM   #5
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrooklynnsMommy View Post
I'm jumping on because your title caught my eye. My oldest daughter (4) took her first trip to Disney at 11 months old and has been 13 times since. My youngest daughter (20 months) took her first trip at 3 months and has been 6 times since. I love all the memories that I have of them enjoying Disney even though they won't remember those first trips I sure do! Can't wait to see and hear more.
I LOVE your reports, and I think we're friends on Facebook? lol You're one of the people that inspired me to take my trips and ignore the nay-sayers!

Which BTW is what the title refers to. I don't think she was too young to go...just the haters.
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Old 12-29-2010, 01:55 PM   #6
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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BoardWalk pics!


No we didn't smuggle her in for some reason.

Yes, we were in the room for mere seconds and it's already destroyed.

I thought this area looked small from pics online, but it was very big with lots of cabinets.

Kitchenette complete with corkscrew. Too bad I forgot the wine.

Taken after I had a shower about 3 minutes after we arrived...I was nasty from the drive. The poor CM at check in must have thought that I dipped my head in oil.

Pull out sofa. DH not included. I couldn't find a pic of this anywhere!

I love this pic. She looks so grown up!

So that's the studio. I was very happy with the size and the location. We were right off the main hall, steps away from the all important elevators and bus stop. The main lobby is actually on the second floor, so we had a balcony. I specifically took pics of the view from the balcony, but apparently didn't upload them to FB. We had a view of the pool. We only spent a tiny bit of time out there, because it was just too cold, and we were always doing something else.

So what did I think of the resort? Am I now a deluxe/dvc snob?

...ugh. I hate to be negative so early in the report. The resort was probably the only negative thing about the trip. It wasn't actually bad or anything, but there were so many downsides.
Pros:
1. LOVE the location, so convenient to parks/table service restuarants/entertainment
2. Pool was a lot of fun
3. The decor is beautiful and relaxing
4. Cms were very nice, especially the lifeguards and at all the little food places on the Boardwalk.

Cons:
1. It was LOUD. We've only ever stayed at the values and mods before. I have never experienced the level of noise we had. We were woken every morning by families in the rooms next to/above or below us. Every night the same families kept us awake. The afternoons for naps were hard, because the pool DJ was so loud. I can only imagine what it would have been like with actual people in the pool. The hallways were terribly noisey. But the the worst noise was the darn doors! They were sooo loud when they closed. And you couldn't be quiet with them! I tried! The mods have the crazy loud toilets, but the doors were so much worse.

2. We really missed having 2 actual beds. I knew this was going to be an issue going in, but the pull out was more uncomfortable than I had hoped.

3. It is absoultely ridiculous that the Epcot resorts share buses to AK. You pay so much to be there and the buses were worse than the mods/values. The MK bus wasn't bad at all. Very comprable to the other resorts. But the AK bus was awful, because it stopped EVERYWHERE. We were on the AK bus for 42 minutes leaving in the afternoon. We hit a shift change which added about 6 minutes, but then we stopped at the Swan, Dolphin, Yacht and Beach Clubs. (I knew this going in, but it still stunk.)

4. No quick service options. It's really hard to be on the dining plan and get your QS credits in for any value unless you walk over to Epcot's WS. The only place you can use it is at the Bakery and they have very few options.

5. Pain in the behind to fill refilable mugs. You do get to know the CMs pretty well though!

With all that said, I think the resort is nice and would think a stay there with adults only would be nice. You are more able to enjoy the nightlife or walk over to WS.

Next post: more resort photos!
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Old 12-29-2010, 02:34 PM   #7
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HI! I'm joining in! We were there at the same time as you and also at the Boardwalk. We were in a studio on the 5th floor with a pool view. We didn't have the noise issue that you had though. It was me DH and DS (almost 10). We had a great time. I love the Boardwalk area. You are right about the counter service options though, they need to figure out how to resolve that issue. Over at the Beach Club, they have a little quick service type place in the store, but it's not like a real CS place.
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Old 12-29-2010, 03:34 PM   #8
harleyquinn
Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncw89 View Post
HI! I'm joining in! We were there at the same time as you and also at the Boardwalk. We were in a studio on the 5th floor with a pool view. We didn't have the noise issue that you had though. It was me DH and DS (almost 10). We had a great time. I love the Boardwalk area. You are right about the counter service options though, they need to figure out how to resolve that issue. Over at the Beach Club, they have a little quick service type place in the store, but it's not like a real CS place.
Welcome!!
I've done a lot of research about BW, and I really haven't seen anyone complain about the noise. I wonder if it was because we were so close to the lobby? but we didn't hear lobby noise as much as neighbor noise.

And I wanted to say that I don't blame the neighbors at all. At Disney you have to expect to have kids all around and DD did her share of noise making, but I've never heard neighbors to the extent we did.
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Old 12-29-2010, 04:30 PM   #9
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Subbing! Loved your last TR and wanna keep up on this one. Wild about the noise at BW. I wouldn't expect this at all. Good to know that this was about the only negative of your trip though!
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Old 12-29-2010, 06:54 PM   #10
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Sarah Im Joining In!!! Cant wait to read about the fun you had!!! I can not wait until we go at Christmas or even take Annabelle for the first time.
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:02 AM   #11
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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Hi Rachel! I have a couple updates ready to go!

(And can I please steal your DD's name if we have another girl? I really love the name Belle/Bella, but I wanted something a bit longer and there are so many Isabelle/Isabella's around here, but Annabelle would be perfect! Especially with Lilliana! --Of course we have no immediate plans for another kid. lol)
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:07 AM   #12
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Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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December 18th cont.
After my shower, I unpacked us and Lily was still running around, so we decided to explore.
So more BW pics:

Gingerbread display...smelled so good!

Hidden Mickey and gingerbread detail

This is as close to the Belle Vue Lounge as we got.

Fireplace with super weird chair

Blurry BW at night



Okay, here they come...creepy clown pool pics, at night no less...you clownophobes have been warned

DH swears this is a ghost and not steam.

BoardWalk entrance is beautiful, especially at night


I want to buy points for BWV just to go every year and take pictures of Lily in this chair to see her growth (yes even with the noise! )


The BW is really beautiful at night, but it was cold and time for Lily to go to sleep. We had an early day at MK tomorrow!
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Old 12-30-2010, 10:46 AM   #13
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I'm in-subscribing to come back and read later!
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Old 12-30-2010, 11:15 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harleyquinn View Post
Hi Rachel! I have a couple updates ready to go!

(And can I please steal your DD's name if we have another girl? I really love the name Belle/Bella, but I wanted something a bit longer and there are so many Isabelle/Isabella's around here, but Annabelle would be perfect! Especially with Lilliana! --Of course we have no immediate plans for another kid. lol)
Of Course you can steal the name Annabelle. I have to be honest I love the name but really my husband picked it. We didnt want something super popular and something that could be shortened. Loving the update! I just updated my Signature and I think you will like the new picture. Its one of her stocking stuffers.
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Old 12-30-2010, 11:39 AM   #15
harleyquinn
Wishes she could take photos of the castle as well as the photos DALE (of Chip & Dale) takes.
I wanted to regale you all with tales of my DH's saggy greyies
 
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Quote:
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I'm in-subscribing to come back and read later!
Hi!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by RooRach0906 View Post
Of Course you can steal the name Annabelle. I have to be honest I love the name but really my husband picked it. We didnt want something super popular and something that could be shortened. Loving the update! I just updated my Signature and I think you will like the new picture. Its one of her stocking stuffers.
OMG I love it!! Sooo cute!
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