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Old 04-11-2012, 01:27 PM   #46
Missyrose
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Originally Posted by natebenma View Post
For the past several years, the boys have not only had Columbus day off, but they have had the Friday before that off for Teacher Development.

A couple of years ago we went to Washington DC for that 4 day weekend (which also falls on Mark's BD, Oct 10) and had an awesome time-low crowds, great weather.

So this was exactly the time frame we were thinking of for a quick Disney trip.

And then the school discontinued that extra day off for the next school year!
Ugh, how frustrating! That really would have been the perfect long-weekend for a trip!

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Originally Posted by teekathepony View Post
Well, despite telling my DH that we could not take a trip this year, he begged and pleaded and wheeled and dealed and about a week and a half ago he managed to get a trip booked for September. We're going for a quick trip on a tight budget, but we're going!
I'm sure he REALLY had to twist your arm. You get to stay at Art of Animation? How cool is that?!?!? I can't wait to dive into your PTR.

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Originally Posted by tinacaplan View Post
Your food and wine plans look great..if you're inside of 180 days...I will be soon, too! Wow. Time flies... Your plans look great. Via Napoli has a carciofi pizza with truffle oil that I love and think about quite fondly all the time.

Its so funny, but even though I don't love AK, I would LOVE to stay at AKL someday. Not sure how that makes sense, but whatever...its DISNEY!
I can't believe we're going to miss each other by just a few days, I'm just missing Brook's October trip too.

Pizza with truffle oil? Yes please! That's going on my must-eat list.

I totally feel the same way about AKL. We visited the resort for breakfast one morning (mainly because Franklin and I were dying to check out the resort we'd be staying at in October) and we were totally blown away. It. Is. GORGEOUS.
I cannot wait to have seven days to explore it. Ugh, I can't wait. Is it October yet?
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Old 04-11-2012, 04:11 PM   #47
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Oh wow, AKL, you lucky duckling... that's one of my dream resorts! It's SO gorgeous!

I'm sorry about the frustrating ADR stuff, but it sounds like you got a lot of great ones, so HOORAY!!!
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:04 AM   #48
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Your October trip sounds awesome.... sigh..... I'm just gonna stow away in your suitcase, mmmkay?? No one would miss me at home right?!?

I've got the Disney bug very badly right now, so I am enjoying living vicariously through your TR and Oct plans.
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:17 PM   #49
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I'm finally here!!! I've seen your pics on Facebook a bit, and even told you in person, but Tanner is SERIOUSLY the cutest!!! No wonder he was getting all that attention while waiting at EE!

Your October trip sounds amazing. You are going to love that safari! I have read quite a few reviews of it and people always say it's incredible. I cannot wait to see Franklin's pictures!

But...I'm still sad we will miss each other by just a few days. Good thing we met in D.C.!



It was awesome meeting you!!!
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:14 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by marDgreen88 View Post
Oh wow, AKL, you lucky duckling... that's one of my dream resorts! It's SO gorgeous!

I'm sorry about the frustrating ADR stuff, but it sounds like you got a lot of great ones, so HOORAY!!!
I never in a million years thought AKL would appeal to me, but the more I researched it, it became a no-brainer.
The resort is just gorgeous and there is so much to do! Seriously, is it October yet?

I finally got all caught up with your TR and like I said in my comments on it, we're definitely separated at birth when it comes to our Disney exuberance.
We both love Every. Single, Disney. Detail!

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Originally Posted by PrincessAmongPrinces View Post
Your October trip sounds awesome.... sigh..... I'm just gonna stow away in your suitcase, mmmkay?? No one would miss me at home right?!?

I've got the Disney bug very badly right now, so I am enjoying living vicariously through your TR and Oct plans.
Climb on in! There should be plenty of room, especially since we're shipping a box down for our new Owner's Locker.


Quote:
Originally Posted by brookelizabeth View Post
I'm finally here!!! I've seen your pics on Facebook a bit, and even told you in person, but Tanner is SERIOUSLY the cutest!!! No wonder he was getting all that attention while waiting at EE!

Your October trip sounds amazing. You are going to love that safari! I have read quite a few reviews of it and people always say it's incredible. I cannot wait to see Franklin's pictures!

But...I'm still sad we will miss each other by just a few days. Good thing we met in D.C.!



It was awesome meeting you!!!
Our lunch was so much fun! And for as adorable as Henry comes across in your TRs, he's even MORE adorable in person. You've got a great little man there.

I'm very excited about the safari. Doing it on the first day, I figured it would help us learn about the animals we'd see from our room the rest of the trip.

Seriously, at some point our trips have to overlap at Disney, right?
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:31 PM   #51
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Hi there! I'm joining in! Loving your TR so far. Tanner is SO. STINKIN. CUTE. I am taking my DS to Disney for the first time in October (will be 14 months), so I enjoy reading about others' experiences with kids that age! I'm glad Tanner enjoyed his first character experience and ride - that is encouraging to me. We're also going in October this year! We're hoping to try 'Ohana for the first time as well as F&W! Your DH and I have something in common: I, too, could ride EE all day long! It's my favorite.

I was happy to see Buffalo Wild Wings in your post; that's my DH's all-time favorite restaurant in the history of food (outside WDW, of course) . You have great ADR's for October! I see 50's PTC Cafe on there, which is a must-do for us. It's been much different trying to plan ADRs keeping a young kid in mind, so I'm interested to see how Tanner did in restaurants!

Congrats on DVC! I really want to own in the next few years, but DH isn't so sure...he thinks "what if we decide we are tired of Disney in 10 years?" To me, that's crazy talk! Maybe during next year's trip we can do the tour and see if he's convinced.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to following along!
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:03 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by Maestra99 View Post
Hi there! I'm joining in! Loving your TR so far. Tanner is SO. STINKIN. CUTE. I am taking my DS to Disney for the first time in October (will be 14 months), so I enjoy reading about others' experiences with kids that age! I'm glad Tanner enjoyed his first character experience and ride - that is encouraging to me.
Glad to have you aboard! I'm so glad to hear you're taking your DS to Disney. I'm sure plenty of people have told you he'd be too young to enjoy it, but they're totally wrong. I was amazed at how engaged Tanner was with everything around him during the trip. The only problem was he was so curious about everything going on around him, he never wanted to nap!

Quote:
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We're also going in October this year! We're hoping to try 'Ohana for the first time as well as F&W! Your DH and I have something in common: I, too, could ride EE all day long! It's my favorite.
October is my favorite time of year to be at Disney. Great weather, lowish crowds and lots of fun Disney extras (MNSSHP and Food and Wine Festival).

I wish EE was in a park we liked more, so Franklin could ride it more often!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Maestra99 View Post
I was happy to see Buffalo Wild Wings in your post; that's my DH's all-time favorite restaurant in the history of food (outside WDW, of course) . You have great ADR's for October! I see 50's PTC Cafe on there, which is a must-do for us. It's been much different trying to plan ADRs keeping a young kid in mind, so I'm interested to see how Tanner did in restaurants!
Tanner did great in restaurants! We love 50s PTC too! Our last two trips have included families with little boys, so we ate at Sci-Fi Dine-In instead of PTC, but now that we're back to going just the two of us -- we need a PTC fix!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maestra99 View Post
Congrats on DVC! I really want to own in the next few years, but DH isn't so sure...he thinks "what if we decide we are tired of Disney in 10 years?" To me, that's crazy talk! Maybe during next year's trip we can do the tour and see if he's convinced.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to following along!
Take the tour, but make sure you do lots of research about the resale market, you could save 50-60 percent off what Disney is selling DVC contracts for. For example, our Boardwalk Villas contract cost us $50 per point, Disney is selling Boardwalk for $115 per point. If yo have time during your trip, go look at the DVC resorts you'd be interested in making your home resort, so you can see if you like the layout and vibe. You can even ask to see an empty villa.

I did lots and lots of research before we bought, so if you have ay DVC questions, feel free to ask.

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Old 04-14-2012, 11:22 AM   #53
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Count me in!!
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:05 PM   #54
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Count me in!!
Wuh-hoo! Thanks for joining the party!
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:23 PM   #55
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A Grand Homecoming and a Sporty Dinner

When we last left off, our group was cruising out of Animal Kingdom as the sun was setting.
It was a bit chillier than it was earlier. So Tanner was nice and bundled in his stroller.



Lala and Keith had friends in Florida they wanted to meet up with, so we had made plans to meet them at Boardwalk. This way, they would get to see their friends and Franklin and I could explore the resort for the first time since we signed on the dotted line to buy DVC there!



How gorgeous is that?!?!?!

We wandered around the lobby for a bit, taking in all the wonderful details.







I asked at the front desk if the DVC models were still open. The CM said they were and he would get someone to take us down there. Franklin and I left the rest of the group for just a few minutes so we could go take a peek at the model. Like everything else at the resort, we loved the look of the model. On our walk back toward the lobby, we stopped at Big River Grille to see how long the wait would be for a party of 10, they said about an hour. So we put our name on the list and they said to come back in a half-hour for a pager.

I said I would go check out how long the wait was at ESPN while Franklin went to get the rest of the group from the lobby. ESPN said they couldn’t seat all 10 of us together, but once the whole party got there, they could seat us at two tables near each other. Works for me! So I called Franklin and told him to move the group a little faster.

Franklin and Co. made there way out of the lobby and down to the super gorgeous Boardwalk (I am seriously going to love making this my “home away from home”).



And they met me at ESPN. We were seated kinda close to each other. One table was on the upper rim, the other table was the next level down. Franklin and I sat with Lala, Kotkham and Tanner. Keith sat with his friend and their family. We quickly ordered and Lala started setting up Tanner’s dinner.

Remember how I mentioned that Tanner’s handmade baby food was left at home? Well this meal would be his first with store-bought baby food. He seemed really hungry because he went to town on his bottle while Lala got the food ready.



She gave him his first bite of turkey and mixed vegetables baby food and he scrunched up his nose as if to say, “What the heck was that?” He ate some more and drank some more from his bottle. Our food arrived. But just before any of us could eat, poor Tanner threw up everything! We cleaned up the table and Lala and I took Tanner to the bathroom to change his clothes (luckily Auntie Missy had gone a bit overboard in buying Disney shirts for Tanner, so he had options for clothing changes).

Lala decided they would avoid any meat and veggie combo baby foods for the rest of the trip and just stick to the fruits and veggies he already knew and liked.

Back to dinner, Tanner was looking much better. So the rest of us dug into our dinner. Franklin and I split the Philly cheesesteak and a burger.



It was waaaaaay too much food. It was good, but I would have been fine just sharing the cheesesteak.

Lala had a bowl of chilli and Kotkham had a bowl of clam chowder.

As we got the check, Franklin took off for the bridge between Boardwalk and Epcot to set up his tripod for Illuminations.



After we paid the bill, we all joined him. I had never seen Illuminations, so I wasn’t sure what to expect.
Watching from the bridge was cool because we could hear the music and we saw lots of the high fireworks.









It was the perfect teaser to get me excited to FINALLY see the show in the park later in the trip! We slowly made our way back to the Boardwalk, taking in the majestic sights.









Can you believe this is a resort? It is so pretty all lit up. We stopped and watched some of the performers.



And how can you visit the Boardwalk without enjoying some delicious treats? I got fudge, Franklin got a Mickey head Rice Krispy treat, and Lala and Keith got a funnel cake and cotton candy. We took our goodies back up to the spectacular lobby to enjoy them.





With our bellies full, it was time to call it a night. We’d managed to pack lots of fun into arrival day, but we were all exhausted. It was definitely time for bed.

Well friends, our trip’s first day is in the books. What did you think? As much as I loved staying at Contemporary in October, it just doesn’t have the same “Wow” factor that Boardwalk does, so I see it quickly becoming our favorite resort. What is your favorite resort at Disney World?
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Old 04-15-2012, 03:43 PM   #56
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Sounds like a great meal for all but poor Tanner! Glad he got feeling better a little later. I LOVE the ESPN club! Yum!!
You've never seen IllumiNations? (where did that little scared face go in the smilies!?) Whoa, I hope you do later in the trip!
My favourite resort is Pop Century because it's the only one I've ever been to! (YET! )
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Old 04-15-2012, 06:40 PM   #57
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Sounds like a great meal for all but poor Tanner! Glad he got feeling better a little later. I LOVE the ESPN club! Yum!!
You've never seen IllumiNations? (where did that little scared face go in the smilies!?) Whoa, I hope you do later in the trip!
My favourite resort is Pop Century because it's the only one I've ever been to! (YET! )
This was mine and Franklin's second time dining at ESPN and we've had excellent meals both times we were there. It's also nice to have restaurants that don't take ADRs so you can pop in if you feel like it!

Tanner was perfectly fine after dinner. Lesson learned, no turkey baby food. It even sounds gross, I don't blame Tanner for puking.

Isn't it crazy that it took seven trips to Disney in my lifetime before I finally saw Illuminations?!?!? We always planned to see it, but something always managed to come up. I am soooooo glad I finally got to have that "first" on this trip. And I can't wait for you guys to see Franklin's photos of Illuminations, they are PHENOMENAL. He really outdid himself!

Pop Century looks like so much fun. I love all the larger-than-life statues. Now that we have DVC and will be going back to Disney a couple of times a year, I'm hoping to spends some time on each trip doing a little resort hopping to check out all the resorts I've never been to!
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Old 04-15-2012, 06:58 PM   #58
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Illuminations is my absolute favorite. And Franklin's pictures are STUNNING!! Truly, truly amazing pictures.

I am staying at the BW for the first time in a few weeks and am so excited to stay there!

So sorry Tanner didn't take to the baby food.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:06 PM   #59
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And I can't wait for you guys to see Franklin's photos of Illuminations, they are PHENOMENAL. He really outdid himself!
I don't know... There are somethings about it I would like to change. I hope you aren't creating too high of expectations.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:05 PM   #60
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Sorry to hear Tanner's dinner disagreed with him. My boys never ate the stage 3 meaty meals very well either. I hope Tanner does better with fruits and veggies!

I love those Illuminations pictures! I would never have thought of watching from the bridge, but that's a great location.
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