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Old 07-03-2007, 01:26 PM   #16
KathyRN137
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Smile I'm in.

A His & Hers report... family struggles and triumphs... cute kids with cheeks you just want to reach out and pinch... all mixed in with lots and lots of pixie dust!

All the elements of a great TR!

I can't wait to read more.....

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Old 07-03-2007, 01:32 PM   #17
Princess Amy
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Your children are adorable. I am sure you and your family had a trip of a lifetime. Cannot wait to hear more!
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Old 07-03-2007, 02:09 PM   #18
Crazy Kanga
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Great start. Can't wait to read more. I have a boy at my school who is supposed to get a Make a Wish trip so I might share this with him someday.
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Old 07-03-2007, 02:42 PM   #19
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I'm joining in too! Your children are beautiful! I can't wait to hear about your trip!
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Old 07-03-2007, 02:52 PM   #20
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Great start can't wait for more. Is the villa on disney property?
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Old 07-03-2007, 02:58 PM   #21
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Sounds good so far

Hi, I don't have a wish kid but I do work with them! I am anxious to read how much fun your family had! Also, prayers for you to find the right hospital/doctors.
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Old 07-03-2007, 03:37 PM   #22
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Can't wait to read more of your TR!
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Old 07-03-2007, 04:16 PM   #23
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Can't wait to read more! I'm so glad your family got to have the vacation of a life time!
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Old 07-03-2007, 05:19 PM   #24
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Anxiously awaiting your next report!
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Old 07-03-2007, 05:45 PM   #25
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Is the "Give kids the world village" part of DW? Or is it in Orlando or nearby? I've never heard of it. Is it part of the Make a Wish foundation? Awesome! I'm glad they were so excited the same day they got off the plane. That puts some in a foul mood! LOL Great report! Thanks for writing!
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Old 07-03-2007, 08:12 PM   #26
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Give Kids the World is a resort exclusively for Wish kids in Kissimmee. I'll post pictures soon of what this amazing place looks like. There website is www.gktw.org. It is almost entirely run by volunteers. Many of them are people who work at the theme parks who apparently can't give enough of themselves. There are also volunteers from all over and they even get "snow angels"; volunteers who live up north during the winter and come down to the area in the summer and volunteer there. It is an amazing place. It is not a part of a Wish foundation but Wish foundations from all over the world use it. The even fly the flags of the countries represented that day. We had people from Brazil and England and Germany and other countries while we were there. So neat!

Thank you for all the compliments. I do believe my children are most adorable and credit my dh's genes for that. They are the spitting image of him. And thanks for all the well wishes.
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Wish Trippers...Unite!
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Old 07-03-2007, 08:50 PM   #27
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Ok. Here we go.

First some background. Dh and I were newlyweds when we found out we were pg and that Michael had issues. We were living in a small one bedroom apartment in Chicago. Michael was born and spent the first six months of his life in the hospital, nearly five of those on life support. He nearly died several times during those six months. When we were discharged out of the Children's Hospital, it was with the recommendation of hospice care as he had six months to live. Therefore, Mick and I bought a house as we wanted a home for Michael. Mick had a great career and I also had a good job. I was on maternity leave and we expected that my leave would get us through Michael's impending situation and then we could "move on" for lack of a better term. Well, life had other plans. The week after we signed on our house, Mick was advised that he would be laid off since he could not travel anymore (wanted to be close to home). We now went from being able to afford our house to 1/3rd of what we were making. But we figured for five months we'd forge ahead. Mick and I stayed home together living on his unemployment for the next couple months while he looked for employment but nothing came close to the medical insurance we needed to keep Michael as healthy and safe as possible. Soon we realized that the doctors were wrong. Michael was not going anywhere and he was actually thriving. He might just make it afterall. I went back to work and we have struggled financially these last five years. In that time, we have not been able to afford the upkeep and repairs of the house.
Enter our community. Picture Pleasantville and you have our "HomeTown" (which is the subdivisions name). They heard of our struggles about six months ago and have vowed to help us rebuild.
The Saturday before our trip, we have over 45 volunteers swarming our house. We have tossed all our furniture, ripped out all the carpet and all the walls have a layer of paint on them. Drywall is repaired. General Chaos. The last volunteer leaves at 10pm that night. Children collapse on the mattress we have in one of the rooms. All four of us sleep on the King size bed.

Oh yes, we have to be up in 6 hours and the kids hadn't napped that day!

I'm too excited to sleep. I toss, I turn and I finally fall asleep only to hear Danae screaming. She is still firmly asleep, screaming. As I pick her up trying to figure out what is wrong, I find out. I am now covered in pee. Lovely. Off we go to the bathroom. I wash her and myself up. She's still asleep, as is Michael. Back in bed. Ahhhhh, peace. I toss, I turn, I fall asleep and 45 mintues later, Danae is up screaming. I toss her at Mick and tell him to take her to the bathroom. She doesn't make it and now we have a puddle on the floor. Back to the bathroom we go. She is still asleep. Now I'm concerned. This is not like her. Back to bed. Toss, turn and you guessed it. Just as I fall asleep, she wakes up screaming again. This time she's wet the bed. Thankfully I had put down a towel this time. Still asleep. Its now 3 am. I'm up. No more sleep. I start getting the bags ready, take a shower, get the kids clothes set up and take the luggage out to the sidewalk. At 4am I wake Mick, who's cranky because he didn't get any sleep last night. Grrrrrr! He showers, dresses and goes to wait outside for the limo. At 420am I wake the kids and dress them. They are exhausted but excited. Limo is to be here any second now. Any second now....

At 440am I call the limo company. They have the wrong phone number and are lost. 10 minutes away. Not bad. Give directions and the driver's here by 450am. We get to the airport and drag our luggage into the terminal at Midway airport. Did you know you have to take your own luggage to the screeners these days?! Ya know how hard that is with a three and five year old and two carseats?! Poor Mick. We take a potty break. We're starving as the kids don't want the bars I got them. I'd take a picture but we want to get to the terminal and then get breakfast. Security is busy but moves at a nice pace. Kids have no problems with the procedure at all. We find the terminal and then the gate sign. Sends us off to this strange corridor that keeps going and going and going. I take a quick pic of the kids (in case they get lost) and Mick goes off with Michael for potty and breakfast at MickeyD's.



Not five minutes later I am frantically calling Mick (and he's not answering) as they have started boarding. I call again about three minutes later as boarding is going much faster then I expected. Where is he and why isn't he answering?!? He really does get there as they call off "final boarding"! Yikes!

We get on. We are at 11ABCD. Not bad and Mick starts installing the two carseats. I'm off to take Danae to the potty before takeoff. As I am pottying her (there is no way she and I would have fit in that tiny potty so the door is open), I am chatting with Danae about our Wish trip. The flight attendant, just behind me asks about our trip. I tell her we are on our son's Wish trip and this is there first time on the plane. I turn back to Danae to help her finish up. When I get back to our seats, Mick is uninstalling our carseats. We have been upgraded to Business class. We are now in 2ABCD! Yeah! I won't have to deal with both kids alone!! We install and sit and off we go! Kids still haven't napped and there is no indication they are ever going to sleep again!

Flight is wonderful. No problems whatsoever. We arrive on time and off we go to find our Wish Trip Escorts. We pass security and there is a big sign with Michael's name. We have found them, or they us. Yeah!

They have a luggage cart and off we go to collect our bags. No problems here. Easy Peasy really and off we go to the car rental. We get a nice car with plenty of trunk space. Again, no issues. We install carseats, say goodbye to our escorts and we go off to Give Kids the World (forevermore referred to as GKTW).
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My Make-A-Wish Trip Report...Picture Update Page 30-31
Wish Trippers...Unite!
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Old 07-03-2007, 08:57 PM   #28
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Wendy you have me sitting here in tears right now. I wish you the best of luck and I'm looking forward to reading more.
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Old 07-03-2007, 09:12 PM   #29
wendygrace
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Alright, so we are driving in the Orlando area and are having no problems getting to GKTW. Directions are clear and as we head into GKTW, here is what we see.



The place is beautiful and quiet. We check in as the kids run around check in area. There are books, tvs, rocking horses, a replica map of the village. The people are awesome. Our villa is ready and the kids get new t-shirts that say Give Kids the World. Off the kids and I go in a golf cart while Mick follows in the car. I wish I had pictures of the villa but I don't. I did take video later in the week but not sure how to get that online. Anyways, Living room, eat in kitchen, washer/dryer, a master bedroom, bathroom, a kids room (two twin beds - huge) and a huge bathroom for the "kids" which includes a hot tub! Sweet! Our back door looks out to the pond, the swimming pool is steps away and the fishing area is right there! And its quiet! Beautiful! The villa has everything we will need, snacks, drinks, dish and laundry detergent, soap, shampoo and gifts for the kids.




We wander around. There is a caroussel (which we must ride),


a train (which we must ride),


a "magic castle"


with a play room and volunteers and lots of other good stuff.

Note the "giant" looking down into the playroom. So cute! And that cabinet with the mirrors is full of dress up clothes for children of all ages.


Oh, and Ice Cream from Friendly's (as well as sandwiches). Ice Cream for lunch! Great way to start our vacation!


After wandering around, we try to nap the kids and its a nogo. They're not napping ever! So Mick takes the kids fishing and I head off to orientation. I learn a good bit there, get our tickets and other important stuff including the all important GKTW pin. This pin will be our "ticket" to "special treatment". I also learn we can use a stroller as a wheelchair and this will be a lifesaver as Michael has poor stamina for walking distances and he has trouble doing any kind of waiting. He also likes to take off on us. He just has no attention span. Michael has autistic like tendencies with severe ADHD like features. The resort has him completely fascinated though. Thank goodness the doors to our villa have chain locks way up on top. We later find Michael has pulled a chair to the door in the middle of the night to the doors, trying to unlock them.

We return to our room and opt to not do dinner but order free pizza. We're hoping that just being in the villa will calm them down enough to sleep. Haha! Michael has received a birthday cake from GKTW as well and although I hide it, they find it. Mick goes to take a bath in the hot tub for a "break". They're still awake. Then I go take a bath for my "break". When I get out, they're still awake. At about midnight, they both lay there head down on their beds and crash. Mick and I are utterly exhausted but fascinated with how excited they are.

We are a bit nervous as we want to be up by 7am or so to get breakfast and be at Magic Kingdom at rope drop. Tomorrow is Michael's birthday. We are scheduled to do MK in the morning and Epcot in the evening with a quick break at GKTW in between. We have dinner reservations at Epcot and we can't wait to meet our Dis friends at Off-Kilter. We pass out on our beds and hope for the best.

Stay tuned for our Wonderfully Perfect Day at MK...even though all our plans went out the window!
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My Make-A-Wish Trip Report...Picture Update Page 30-31
Wish Trippers...Unite!
Wish Trippers Unite Volume Two!

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Old 07-03-2007, 09:21 PM   #30
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Love it Wendy... You are doing such a great job! Keep it up- I can't wait to read more!
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