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Old 03-20-2013, 11:25 AM   #31
traceyg
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Originally Posted by disfanforlife View Post
Love your report! I have never considered cooking while on vacation but with your methods I might. Especially since our kids are getting older and would like to bring friends and or boyfriends with them too. Also, our daughter is interested in the. College Disney program too. I hope that she will be able to participate in it. It seems like a great opportunity!
My two bonus kiddos and my husband are chow hounds. Each of them can easily wipe out an entire sit down meal at the parks. Mom and Dad are moderate eaters and the older kids and I could share one plate and still have left overs. My daughter's boyfriend is a chow hound as well. That's a minimum of 7-8 meals every time we'd eat, including drinks that would put us around $200 for a sit down or $80 (or better) for counter service. Economically it made sense for us as long as I wasn't stuck in the kitchen for hours. Time is money, especially at WDW. The use of crockpots and short cuts (like precut lettuce and shredded cheese, etc) minimized the time that I was cooking. I love WDW and I love WDW food. With that being said there's something about being gone for a week and eating out the entire time that just doesn't agree with my stomach after awhile. By day 3 or 4 I am not feeling the best. I don't know if it's spices, oils or what. Cooking in the room provided us with "home cooking" that didn't hurt our stomachs after a week.

I HIGHLY recommend the College Program. My son is thinking about reapplying. He has lived in the dorms of a very large university and also at a small college. He has worked retail and has been a waiter at Cracker Barrel. He's had life experiences in "the real world" of employment and taking care of himself. None of that compared to being an employee at WDW. He learned so much while he was gone. I really think its the closest thing to sending your kid off to the army without enlisting them. That's not to say that it's not a fun experience though. He worked food service at a moderate hotel- not exactly glamourous but it was a means to a paycheck. He made some friendships there that he still maintains. He had some really good times being with "kids" his own age and doing things around Florida. Last week (here at home) he had his wallet stolen and the one thing that really bothered him was that he still had his Disney ID card in it. Of the credit cards, driver license, social security card, and countless other things, his Disney ID was the first thing he remembered. Luckily the thief grabbed the credit cards and dropped the wallet so he got his ID back.
Side note: I would highly recommend having her take a car with her if she goes. My son would have to leave the apartment hours early to make it to work on time. There's a scheduled bus that goes to WalMart but if you're working you don't get to go. My son was in an apartment with 5 other guys and from the sounds of it I think it was kind of a bachelor pad of sorts, as in there were Ramen noodles and tv dinners but no real food. He said he'd run out of food sometimes and have to borrow from a roommate. One time there wasn't anything in the cabinets but odds and ends and he really didn't eat for a day or so. After his rent was taken out sometimes he'd be left with like $20 so he had to budget wisely. Buying counter service food at his job wasn't a good economic investment and if they caught you taking anything you'd get termed. It goes back to him learning how to take care of himself. I know he probably didn't budget his time wisely to get to WalMart but if he'd had a car he could have just gone when he got off of work. Long story short- if she needs to grow up, its a good way to get her there without risking her safety, if she's already years ahead then she'll do just fine. Be prepared to send money. When I asked my son why he didn't call me when he was out of food he said that he was sorry for having to ask for things. I would have gladly had pizza delivered. If he goes back he will take his car this time.
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:25 PM   #32
disfanforlife
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Originally Posted by traceyg View Post
My two bonus kiddos and my husband are chow hounds. Each of them can easily wipe out an entire sit down meal at the parks. Mom and Dad are moderate eaters and the older kids and I could share one plate and still have left overs. My daughter's boyfriend is a chow hound as well. That's a minimum of 7-8 meals every time we'd eat, including drinks that would put us around $200 for a sit down or $80 (or better) for counter service. Economically it made sense for us as long as I wasn't stuck in the kitchen for hours. Time is money, especially at WDW. The use of crockpots and short cuts (like precut lettuce and shredded cheese, etc) minimized the time that I was cooking. I love WDW and I love WDW food. With that being said there's something about being gone for a week and eating out the entire time that just doesn't agree with my stomach after awhile. By day 3 or 4 I am not feeling the best. I don't know if it's spices, oils or what. Cooking in the room provided us with "home cooking" that didn't hurt our stomachs after a week.

I HIGHLY recommend the College Program. My son is thinking about reapplying. He has lived in the dorms of a very large university and also at a small college. He has worked retail and has been a waiter at Cracker Barrel. He's had life experiences in "the real world" of employment and taking care of himself. None of that compared to being an employee at WDW. He learned so much while he was gone. I really think its the closest thing to sending your kid off to the army without enlisting them. That's not to say that it's not a fun experience though. He worked food service at a moderate hotel- not exactly glamourous but it was a means to a paycheck. He made some friendships there that he still maintains. He had some really good times being with "kids" his own age and doing things around Florida. Last week (here at home) he had his wallet stolen and the one thing that really bothered him was that he still had his Disney ID card in it. Of the credit cards, driver license, social security card, and countless other things, his Disney ID was the first thing he remembered. Luckily the thief grabbed the credit cards and dropped the wallet so he got his ID back.
Side note: I would highly recommend having her take a car with her if she goes. My son would have to leave the apartment hours early to make it to work on time. There's a scheduled bus that goes to WalMart but if you're working you don't get to go. My son was in an apartment with 5 other guys and from the sounds of it I think it was kind of a bachelor pad of sorts, as in there were Ramen noodles and tv dinners but no real food. He said he'd run out of food sometimes and have to borrow from a roommate. One time there wasn't anything in the cabinets but odds and ends and he really didn't eat for a day or so. After his rent was taken out sometimes he'd be left with like $20 so he had to budget wisely. Buying counter service food at his job wasn't a good economic investment and if they caught you taking anything you'd get termed. It goes back to him learning how to take care of himself. I know he probably didn't budget his time wisely to get to WalMart but if he'd had a car he could have just gone when he got off of work. Long story short- if she needs to grow up, its a good way to get her there without risking her safety, if she's already years ahead then she'll do just fine. Be prepared to send money. When I asked my son why he didn't call me when he was out of food he said that he was sorry for having to ask for things. I would have gladly had pizza delivered. If he goes back he will take his car this time.
Thank you for sharing. All of that is great information! Our daughter is 17 and a high school senior. She is going to majoring in Marketing. This summer she has a job at a restaurant - before that she mainly babysat for work. But, our whole family LOVES Disney. I know that she would love to do the college program but not sure what year she will want to do it. She needs to go to college for at least a year first and then decide. She will be doing that at the end of August.
Our next trip to Disney will be without our two daughters since they will be in school when we go. BUT, we are bringing another family with us who have 3 kids and of course our 12 year DS. So, we will have a full villa. I think we will stick with the dining plan this time because this family has never been to Disney and they want to try all of the restaurants. Hopefully, the next year we will bring our daughters when they have a break - and will try some cooking in the villa.
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