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Old 01-28-2013, 05:34 PM   #1
JWCJ
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Ja's WDW Make A Wish PreTrip April/May '13

Hello

I'm not going to use full names all the time, but I really should introduce my family properly!

I'm Jordi (aka Jo). I'm a SAHM with an Education degree that I'm perfectly okay with not using for now My husband is Warren (aka W). He works in sales; we also own a mobile disc jockey business. We're both in our early 30s and have been married for 7 years We live in a city in the Canadian Prairies. Let's just say our forecast tomorrow is -32F and I'm not even really paying attention to that fact. Don't ask me why we live here

The important members of our family are Cami (C) and Jacey (J). C is 5 1/2 and in Kindergarten. I might be biased, but she's a very smart cookie. She loves to read (novels like Little House on the Prairie) and loves science and nature. She switches between wanting to be a paleotologist and a zoo vet.

Jacey is about to turn 4. She is our crazy extroverted "Jacey Badger." Life is never boring (or quiet) with her around. April of last year, she was diagnosed with Leukemia. She has lived up to her nickname this year, and has responded extremely well to her chemo treatments. She was interviewed for her wish in November. Admittedly, her very first wish was to meet Elton John (remember, she's 3!).... Problem is, she's in love with Elton John from the era of boas and glitter and tight pantsuits I don't think she would recognize him now!

After some discussion, we agreed that WDW would be a better fit for both her and our whole family. I grew up as a Disney kid, but neither W or the girls have been yet. We were planning on taking the girls next year, but Jace will be on treatment until Oct 2014. I HAVE raised the girls right, though, and they love everything Disney - favourites (currently) being Lilo & Stitch, Lion King, and anything Disney Jr. We're also hoping to get a day at the beach, since Jace has never seen the ocean - and the ocean closest to us is c-c-c-cold!

We just got our dates and the JWCJ crew are heading to WDW (and GKTW, barring any last minute changes) April 27 - May 4, 2013!!! Only 3 months!

Pictures will follow - I just don't want them RIGHT at the top
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:12 PM   #2
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Welcome!! I am so glad that Jacey will be getting her wish! I can't wait to hear all about your trip!

Jackie
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:18 PM   #3
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Discussing the MUST-DOs

For the record, I have fantastic girls. They fascinate me everyday, although I am usually exhausted from listening to their babbles and chasing after them and separating them as they fight. (Oh MAN, they fight.) Both of them are curious and intelligent and unrelenting. They're not Princess Girls, they're not Bug Girls, they're not Pirate Girls... they're just.... my girls.

I admit, though, that this is making the process of figuring out what we Must-Do rather difficult. So far we know:

1) Dumbo (of course, we have a 3 year old)
2) it's a small world
3) Jungle Cruise
4) Animal Kingdom (when asked for specifics, C just rolls her eyes and says, "Everything, Mother. Duh." She is 5 going on 16.)
5) Muppet Vision 3D
6) Manatees
7) Sounds like MAW will arrange Bibbity Bobbity Boutique, but I'm SO not mentioning that one ahead of time

Add to this the fact that W has never been to Disney either, and I think he deserves to experience classics like Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, etc that the girls are either too scared of or too small for. (BTW, Ja needs grow 1/2 inch vibes over the next 3 months, she's 39 1/2 inches tall and she's gonna Freak if she misses Splash Mountain.)



I've never gone to Disney as a parent before - remind me to thank my mom for putting up with me all those times. I'm starting to think a giant spinner with ride names on it will be the way to go!
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:14 AM   #4
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Had to laugh about Elton John. There's a 5 year old girl at our clinic (she was diagnosed with leukemia when she was 3) who adores the Beatles.

I hope Ja grows the 1/4 inch she needs for Splash Mt., and that she gets to see the ocean.

Angel wants to work with giraffes, and working at AK is her dream job.

There are just so many must-dos, it's hard to do them all. Philharmagic is one of our favorites.
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Pretrip Report: Angel's Make a Wish Cruise on the Dream /and extended days at WDW PTR :We have dates 4/13-25
Trip Report: Angel's Make a Wish DREAM Cruise & extended days at wdw: April 13-25, 2013

Previous trips: 2013 Apr. 18-25 2010 May 8-15 2009 Dec. 4-11 2008 Dec. 15-24 2008 Aug. 30-Sept 7
2007 Sept. 1-8 2006 Dec. 9-16 2006 Sept. 26-Oct.3 2005 Sept. 25-Oct.8 2004 Dec. 11-21 All at POP
CRUISE 2013 Apr. 14-18 Disney DREAM
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:57 PM   #5
Corrine 1973
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I am so glad that you are able to go on a Wish trip. I can't wait to see pics of your little girls, they sound just presious. We went on a Wish trip in 2009 and had the best time ever. So much so that we have returned several times since then. We are actually returning at the end of May this year. I can't wait to read more about your trip.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWCJ View Post
For the record, I have fantastic girls. They fascinate me everyday, although I am usually exhausted from listening to their babbles and chasing after them and separating them as they fight. (Oh MAN, they fight.) Both of them are curious and intelligent and unrelenting. They're not Princess Girls, they're not Bug Girls, they're not Pirate Girls... they're just.... my girls.

I admit, though, that this is making the process of figuring out what we Must-Do rather difficult. So far we know:

1) Dumbo (of course, we have a 3 year old)
2) it's a small world
3) Jungle Cruise
4) Animal Kingdom (when asked for specifics, C just rolls her eyes and says, "Everything, Mother. Duh." She is 5 going on 16.)
5) Muppet Vision 3D
6) Manatees
7) Sounds like MAW will arrange Bibbity Bobbity Boutique, but I'm SO not mentioning that one ahead of time

Add to this the fact that W has never been to Disney either, and I think he deserves to experience classics like Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, etc that the girls are either too scared of or too small for. (BTW, Ja needs grow 1/2 inch vibes over the next 3 months, she's 39 1/2 inches tall and she's gonna Freak if she misses Splash Mountain.)



I've never gone to Disney as a parent before - remind me to thank my mom for putting up with me all those times. I'm starting to think a giant spinner with ride names on it will be the way to go!
My 4 year olds tell me there is no way they are going on splash mountain or the haunted mansion or anything that is remotely dark Good thing one of us can hang out with them while the other goes on the ride with our 7 year old You might have to buy your DD shoes with a thicker heal to reach 40"

This will be our first time at Disney as a parent too. It will be interesting

Jackie
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilfoot93 View Post
Welcome!! I am so glad that Jacey will be getting her wish! I can't wait to hear all about your trip!

Jackie
Thanks Jackie! Back at you!
C is convinced she wants to do Splash Mountain, but I'm not convinced she'll actually make it on the ride. Ja is very much the daredevil of my girls! There's no way either girl will do Haunted Mansion - we might just have to send W in to brave the ghosts on his own while we have a break.


Quote:
Originally Posted by angel's momma View Post
Had to laugh about Elton John. There's a 5 year old girl at our clinic (she was diagnosed with leukemia when she was 3) who adores the Beatles.

I hope Ja grows the 1/4 inch she needs for Splash Mt., and that she gets to see the ocean.

Angel wants to work with giraffes, and working at AK is her dream job.

There are just so many must-dos, it's hard to do them all. Philharmagic is one of our favorites.
I don't know if I'm ever going to get C out of AK!
I guess I'm just going to have to go with the flow.... I'm just so anxious about them experiencing EVERYTHING! Need to remember to let them experience the moments. Maybe I should get that tattooed on my forehead?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Corrine 1973 View Post
I am so glad that you are able to go on a Wish trip. I can't wait to see pics of your little girls, they sound just presious. We went on a Wish trip in 2009 and had the best time ever. So much so that we have returned several times since then. We are actually returning at the end of May this year. I can't wait to read more about your trip.
I've heard so many amazing things about these wish trips. I'm sure we'll be back as soon as we can, too. From the reading I've done, Ja won't be eligible for travel insurance until 6 months after her treatment (and only if she stays healthy) - and I'm NOT traveling to the US without insurance.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:30 AM   #8
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Background

A note to start: When I was 8 weeks pregnant with Ja, we lost W's mom to breast cancer - She had started the fight 4 years earlier, but the cancer had spread first to her liver, than her brain. We managed to tell her about the pregnancy just before she slipped into the end stages of her fight. When Ja was born, the first words out of W's mouth were, "Holy cr@p, she looks like Mom." It's true. Ja very much resembles W and his mom. I truly believe that Ja has a very special and very tough guardian angel helping her through her own cancer journey.


Ja has always been our energetic, extroverted, spirited girl, torturing her much quieter big sister, C. Affectionately known as our Jacey Badger she was also extremely healthy. Following her third birthday in March 2012 we noticed that she was napping in the afternoons, and seemed to spend a lot of time on the couch. We passed it off as her being tired from starting preschool.
At the beginning of April, though, she also seemed extremely pale and even more lethargic than before. We went to her pediatrician, who sent her for blood work. The results came back with a red blood cell count of 60 - normal is 120. We were sent to the local children hospital's ER. Do not pass GO; do not collect $200. About 11:00 pm, our pediatrician showed up. 3 machines had missed it, but the pathologist manually checking her blood caught them. Cancerous cells in Jacey's blood. Within 48 hours, we had a diagnosis of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and Jacey had a central line and was hooked up to her first dose of chemo, blood transfusions, etc, etc.

The past year has been spent in and out of the hospital for chemo treatments, which will continue until Oct 2014. We remain thankful that Ja's diagnosis was one with such a high remission rate (96%). And we are in awe of our daughter's strength and resiliance and the sheer force of her personality. This is a kid who begs to go to preschool the day after having chemo injected into her spinal cord.

Ja is on a daily immunosuppresant, weekly at home chemo, and pulses of steroids/chemo and lumbar punctures/chemo. She can get sick easily and usually wears a face mask when we're out in public or she's at school. She tires quickly and her meltdowns can be epic - Ah, a 3 year old with 'roid rage. Good times. For the most part, though, we are lucky to say that she is a typical preschooler who loves having dance parties in our basement (her dad is a DJ), playing board and video games, and bugging her sister.


At her 3rd birthday



Easter at the hospital:


C's first day of Kindergarten:


J's first day (back) to Preschool:
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Last edited by JWCJ; 04-24-2013 at 03:06 PM. Reason: Changing to more secure photo links
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:35 AM   #9
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Angel's first trip was in Dec., and the poor girl pulled her Santa hat down over her face because she was terrified of HM.

Many people think AK is a half day park, but it's not for us. Even after all the trips we've taken, we still haven't explored all of the paths, etc. there. C is going to love it.

Sorry about your MIL, but what a wonderful story. My MIL passed away very unexpectedly 2 weeks before Angel was due, so we know how hard that is.

We know all about the whirlwind resulting from those initial blood work results. There are many similarities between ALL & SAA, yet they're so very different.

So glad that despite everything, she can still be a typical preschooler.

Your girls are adorable!
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Pretrip Report: Angel's Make a Wish Cruise on the Dream /and extended days at WDW PTR :We have dates 4/13-25
Trip Report: Angel's Make a Wish DREAM Cruise & extended days at wdw: April 13-25, 2013

Previous trips: 2013 Apr. 18-25 2010 May 8-15 2009 Dec. 4-11 2008 Dec. 15-24 2008 Aug. 30-Sept 7
2007 Sept. 1-8 2006 Dec. 9-16 2006 Sept. 26-Oct.3 2005 Sept. 25-Oct.8 2004 Dec. 11-21 All at POP
CRUISE 2013 Apr. 14-18 Disney DREAM
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:21 PM   #10
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Your girls are precious! Can't wait to hear about the trip!
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angel's momma
Angel's first trip was in Dec., and the poor girl pulled her Santa hat down over her face because she was terrified of HM.

Many people think AK is a half day park, but it's not for us. Even after all the trips we've taken, we still haven't explored all of the paths, etc. there. C is going to love it.

Sorry about your MIL, but what a wonderful story. My MIL passed away very unexpectedly 2 weeks before Angel was due, so we know how hard that is.

We know all about the whirlwind resulting from those initial blood work results. There are many similarities between ALL & SAA, yet they're so very different.

So glad that despite everything, she can still be a typical preschooler.

Your girls are adorable!
I had never heard of SAA before. From your description, I can totally see how the initial thought would be Leukemia.
We've been lucky (pounding on wood) and somehow Ja's platelets have remained steady through this. Her ANC is usually 500 - 800, but I try really hard to let her do stuff - just armed with a ton of Lysol wipes and Purell! I'm going to have to figure out a plan of attack about germs at the Parks....
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:19 PM   #12
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Your girls are precious! Can't wait to hear about the trip!
Thanks!
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by JWCJ View Post
I had never heard of SAA before. From your description, I can totally see how the initial thought would be Leukemia.
We've been lucky (pounding on wood) and somehow Ja's platelets have remained steady through this. Her ANC is usually 500 - 800, but I try really hard to let her do stuff - just armed with a ton of Lysol wipes and Purell! I'm going to have to figure out a plan of attack about germs at the Parks....
We hadn't heard of it either.

Glad her platelets have remained steady. We can relate about the ANC - we buy Purell & Lysol wipes in bulk.
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Pretrip Report: Angel's Make a Wish Cruise on the Dream /and extended days at WDW PTR :We have dates 4/13-25
Trip Report: Angel's Make a Wish DREAM Cruise & extended days at wdw: April 13-25, 2013

Previous trips: 2013 Apr. 18-25 2010 May 8-15 2009 Dec. 4-11 2008 Dec. 15-24 2008 Aug. 30-Sept 7
2007 Sept. 1-8 2006 Dec. 9-16 2006 Sept. 26-Oct.3 2005 Sept. 25-Oct.8 2004 Dec. 11-21 All at POP
CRUISE 2013 Apr. 14-18 Disney DREAM
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:14 AM   #14
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Ja had her chemo this morning, and her first dose of a week of steroids. She amazes me with how quickly she has adapted! A few months ago it was a big production to get her IVAD accessed (her "poke") and today it was over before I knew it.
Caught up with other families, and emerged in my usual state of thankful and guilty. Current therapy is the magic moments at WDW threads. Ja is tired but, as ever, fighting sleeping in her own bed, so I'm going to wrap up in Disney to ignore the snoring kid on the mattress beside me!
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:29 PM   #15
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Glad Ja is handling everything so well. Does she do ok with the steroids? I know some kids have lots of problems.

Haven't had time to read the magic moments, but I used to love reading them. Hope you family will receive many magic moments on your trip.
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Me - Christi DH - Tom DD - Angel 15 (wish kid)

Pretrip Report: Angel's Make a Wish Cruise on the Dream /and extended days at WDW PTR :We have dates 4/13-25
Trip Report: Angel's Make a Wish DREAM Cruise & extended days at wdw: April 13-25, 2013

Previous trips: 2013 Apr. 18-25 2010 May 8-15 2009 Dec. 4-11 2008 Dec. 15-24 2008 Aug. 30-Sept 7
2007 Sept. 1-8 2006 Dec. 9-16 2006 Sept. 26-Oct.3 2005 Sept. 25-Oct.8 2004 Dec. 11-21 All at POP
CRUISE 2013 Apr. 14-18 Disney DREAM
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