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Old 12-01-2011, 11:26 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Illinois
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It Doesn't Get Better Than This

I'm so excited to be starting another trip report. We leave TOMORROW!!! Hooray! I hope that you will follow along...we're planning on having the trip of a lifetime! For anyone with upcoming trips, if there is anything I can research for you while we're gone, just let me know!

WHEN: December 3-10, 2011

WHERE: Beach Club (first stay here...my heart belongs to Poly but I'm going with an open mind )

WHO: This will be our first trip as a family of 5. We are so thrilled to celebrate our son Jack's first birthday...and what could be better than a trip to Disney???


Me (Nikky or Nik, Mom, Mommy & Mama respectively to my precious family) – I am me...I'm broken, I’m beautiful, and I'm blessed! My greatest blessings are my sweet husband, Travis and our 3 children: Hayley, Caya & Jack. I’m a Senior Accountant at our local hospital. I love my job but I am no career woman…I am simply a Mom that has a career. I am the typical soccer Mom (although none of my children actually play soccer). I drive a mini-van and am very proud of that! ha My hobbies are my children...I am the PTO president of Caya's elementary school. I am on the booster club for Hayley’s high school. I serve on a district wide committee to improve our schools (discipline, image, etc.). I am the team Mom for my Caya’s cheerleading gym. And I look forward to finding more ways to be involved when Jack is a little older. I like to be involved in our children's education and activities. In all my free time, I enjoy scrapbooking and traveling (although I rarely get to do either). I have been to Disney 15 times I think…starting to lose count but it’s still nowhere near enough. I could go several times a year but unfortunately, I've been limited to about every other year for some reason or another (husband's job, new babies, etc.). Typically I'm the Disney travel agent of our family...and while I still really, really enjoy the planning, I finally admitted to myself that I just don't have the time to do it all right these days so I enlisted the help of my dis friend who happens to be a travel agent...Becky Lollar (aka LadybugMom). She has been fabulous to work with, allowing me to take over any area I'd like but taking care of eveyrthing I can't get to. I highly recommend her to anyone who could use her assistance (no cost). I won't waste your time telling you how much I love Disney, how the planning is as fun as the trip...you all already know all this or you probably wouldn't be on the Dis.

DH (Travis, Trav, Husband, Daddy) – Travis is my prince charming! Together we have the perfect, simple, humble, crazy, hectic lives...everything I ever dreamed of for my family. He loves me and he loves our family and I know this because he sacrifices so much for us. He’s a high school math teacher, golf coach and softball coach. He teaches at the same high school our oldest attends….poor girl! He also coaches summer softball teams for the high school level and this year coached Caya’s very first year of Ponytail softball. This will be Trav’s 5th trip. He’s happy going every other year so I consider him a work in progress.

Hayley (15) – Hayley is our sweet, mild, loving little lady. She continues to inspire me every day. She is a sophomore in high school and is a cheerleader, runs cross country and track. During the school year she is involved with Student Council, FFA, FBLA, FCA, and Interact. During the summer she lifeguards and teaches swim lessons at our community pool and runs a concession stand for DH’s softball league 3 nights a week. She thrives on a busy schedule and has always been that way. Through all this she manages to be an honor student and every time I think I couldn't be prouder, she proves me wrong. These are the reasons I have NO problem pulling her out of school for a week!

Caya (6) – Caya is hard to sum up in a paragraph. There is a whole lot of personality wrapped up in that teeny tiny body. She is ornery, wild and full of surprises but geesh do I love this girl and I wouldn’t change her one bit. She is in 1st grade and still thinks school is the greatest place ever. She is Daddy’s little softball diva. She also cheers competitively and was on swim team this past summer. She wants to try everything and runs herself ragged. I have a feeling we are going to have a hard time slowing her down. Disney is still very "real" to her and I just love that!

Jack (1) is our newest little love. He turned 1 just yesterday. Travis and I didn’t think we wanted a boy AT ALL. We thought we only made girls, that’s what we know and love and we were going to have 3 of them. Selfishly, Travis thought he could help stack his softball teams a bit. Ha, God laughed at that plan and then gave us the sweetest baby boy on the planet. Oh boy does he have my heart!!! And he sure has one proud Daddy! He’s very mellow and seems to sit back and soak life in. We are all looking forward to sharing Disney with him!

**Future Spot of TR links**

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Old 12-01-2011, 01:46 PM   #2
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Wow .. what a great looking family. Love the picture of your three children together. Can't wait to follow along with your trip report. So envious that you have a week to enjoy .. I'm looking forward to my much too short whirlwind weekend adventure that begins this evening.

I too would go multiple times a year but DH isn't on board with that idea. He actually thinks there are other places we should try and visit. Gasp!!! Somewhere other than WDW??? Who knew ......
Upcoming: Disney Dream 1/11/15 - 4-night Bahamian

Disney Dream - 1/12/14- 4-night Bahamian
Disney Dream - 9/26/13- 3-night Bahamian
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:51 PM   #3
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Have a great trip, can't wait to hear about it when you get back!
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Old 12-11-2011, 03:46 PM   #4
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We're home!

We are back from an amazing trip. Uploading pictures now so this Trip Report can officially be underway. Stay tuned!
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Old 12-11-2011, 05:47 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by beyondblessed View Post
We are back from an amazing trip. Uploading pictures now so this Trip Report can officially be underway. Stay tuned!

I'm in! You're family is beautiful and I hope you guys had a fantastic trip! I can't wait to hear all about it.

October 2013 Port Orleans Resort
May 2013 Animal Kingdom Kidani
October 2012 Art of Animation
January 2012 Port Orleans Resort
June 2011 Coronado Springs
September 2010 All Star Sports
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:05 PM   #6
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First update in progress...FINALLY!
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:22 PM   #7
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Thursday, December 1 - The Day Before the Day Before

Thursday, December 1 - The Day Before the Day Before

I usually start packing weeks before...not this time. There was entirely too much going on the weeks prior to our trip. First of all, I'm one of 2 budget specialists for our local hospital and our budget was due to the board on....12/2!!! There were many late nights and weekends worked leading up to that deadline. I was counting down days just as much for the budget process to be over as I was for our trip to Disney. The 2 weekends before we also had Caya's 7th birthday party, Jack's 1st birthday party, Trav's Opa's 85th birthday party, Thanksgiving and our first family Christmas with my sister who is in FL most of the month of December. I didn't stress like I thought I would...I made a list of my must haves (camera, stroller, bottle) and told myself everything else could be purchased when we got there. I started packing and finished packing on Thursday night after work...and I was up until about 1:00 am. I really thought it may be an all nighter. Good thing I had lots of good help!

(Pictures taken w/iPhone...I promise the ones to come are much better quality!!!)

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Old 01-01-2012, 09:46 PM   #8
well, all that's left now is the happy ending.
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Joining in! I love the way you describe your husband/family! It's so sweet how you say it's everything you've ever dreamed of... that gives me hope! Such adorable pictures of them all too.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:16 PM   #9
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Friday, December 2 - The Day Before

Friday, December 2 - The Day Before
Sunny & Chilly, High of 40

It was finally time to take the last link off of our countdown...oh my goodness! I'm not sure who is most excited!?!

(this pic was actually taken a few days prior but I forgot to take one of the final link)

The morning started out as a typical Friday. We all got up, got ready and headed off to work and school. I tried to work, really I did but it was soooo hard not to think about everything else I needed to do before we could leave. I made it until about 11:45 when I had lunch plans with 2 friends I used to work with. They picked me up and we went to Einstein Bagels where again I was too preoccupied to even enjoy their company. I hope they didn't notice (or mind). Brenda dropped me off at my car so I didn't have to go back into the office. I went straight to the salon to get a (much deserved) manicure. I stopped by Kohl's on my way home and got some socks. I then ran through the back to get cash and headed home. I pulled into the driveway right at 3 when our nanny was getting home from picking Caya up from school. I finished the travel journals for the girls. I had made them on our previous trip and Hayley was disappointed I hadn't done it again
so she started them the night before. I packed the remaining few things and zipped up the final suitcase just as Travis and Hayley pulled in at 3:30.

We loaded up the car (1 giant suitcase, 4 carry on sized suitcases, 2 backpacks, 1 diaper bag, 1 baggellini and a stroller. Whew….that's a lot of "crap" for one family.

Got all 3 kids buckled and situated and then ran through the house and did the last minute checks, doors locked, desk lamp on, porch lights on, heat turned waaaayyy down, dog food out…my sweet sister-in-law agreed to keep our dog, Happy, again while we're gone. She even offered to pick him up later that night so we didn't have to drop him off.

We ran through our other bank so Hayley could withdraw money from her savings...she has to leave a balance of $100 in order to not accrue a monthly charge...she withdrew every last PENNY she could leaving a balance of exactly $100. I teased her that she must worry she'll actually need that 91 cents in FL, and she reminded me that this is what she's been saving for! AND then we were finally on the road to Indy by about 4:30. We stopped in Crawfordsville, a little more than 1/2 way to get some dinner. Travis did NOT want McDonald's…so we ate Burger King (blech). We just drove through and ate on the way so we could hurry on to the hotel. We arrived at the Hampton Inn in Plainsfield at about 8:00 Indy time (we lost an hour going over). We checked in quickly. Travis gave the littles a bath while I finalized packing. We took a separate bag for clothes we'd need the next day but still had to pack all of our toiletries in the bag we'd check. Hayley worked on homework…poor girl has a ton and finals the week we get back. Luckily, this was a good week to miss…she mostly had study guides to complete and didn't miss out on learning any new material. We were all in bed by about 10:30 and actually slept well considering how excited we were.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:22 PM   #10
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I'm in!!! Just found your trip report. You have a very beautiful family. We just returned two weeks ago from our very first trip to DW. I can't wait to read more.
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