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Old 06-10-2008, 02:00 PM   #121
cctimmom
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Great suggestion about not paying until the due date!

I'm going to see if I can set up a separate bank account for our travel funds. If I don't start transferring now, I'll never have the money later! lol
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:08 AM   #122
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It works for me. But know that others like to pay off directly to Disney with payments along the way so they know it's there and they can't get at it, or use it for other things. I drew down my travel account this past December to buy a house - I thought it was OK to do that, but now I have to build it back up again.

I am not getting notifications about posts either. I think it may not be working right now. I have to check my User CP when I log in to see if new posts have been made to the thread.

OH, thank God the heat broke last night!

The sorm that blew through was awful though and we lost our umbrella on our patio. It sits in a very heavy tile top table - probably about 400 pounds, and the wind took that thing and threw it, table, umbrella, and chairs, about ten feet completely sideways last night at midnight. We were lucky it didn't go through any of our windows. It was down too. But the wind still go under it and took that thing for a ride. Amazing. It's in pieces this morning. It was one of those market umbrellas, so all wood. Bummer.
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Old 06-11-2008, 02:08 PM   #123
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We had those storms here in the Chicago area a few days ago, and they were awful. Glad to hear all is well for you!
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Old 06-16-2008, 08:47 AM   #124
castlegazer
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good morning!

I am still in airfare nightmares. I can't decide whether to buy now or wait for JetBlue or SW.

This is going to hurt whatever way we end up going.

On our last meet thread prior to my 2006 cruise, we used to do pictures of the day to pass the time while we waited for that long off cruise. Please add yours here too and take us wherever you want to show us!

Today I present you with Key West, our first stop:





From Destination360.com:
Quote:
A Key West vacation will take you to the furthest of the Florida Keys and southernmost point in the continental U.S. When Spaniards first came here, they called it Key of Bones, or Cayo Hueso, which the English pronounced Key West. Home to laid-back literati and body painted ladies, this independently minded island proclaimed itself The Conch Republic in a mock secession in the 1980s.


The Sun Also Sets


Key West was muse to writers like Ernest Hemmingway, John Dos Passos, Robert Frost, and Tennessee Williams. Even Jimmy Buffet wrote novels here. The tradition continues each January at the Key West Literary Seminar.


Hemingway wrote some of his best works here, including A Farewell to Arms and For Whom The Bell Tolls. To locals, he was “Papa,” a regular at the saloons, boxing rings, and fishing piers. Today, descendants of his six-toed cat will greet you at the home where wrote most of his life’s work.


Sky, Sea, and Sand


Key West also offers home tours of another famous resident, bird painter John James Audubon. To glimpse the lush paradise Audubon knew, visit Nancy Forrester’s Secret Garden in Old Town.


A treasure trove of doubloons and pieces-of-eight from a sunken Spanish galleon are displayed at the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Museum. You can explore a coral reef without leaving town at the Key West Marine Park, or debark on an excursion to Dry Tortugas National Park. Hemingway fished from Garrison Bight, where charters are available for tarpon, cobia, and shark.


Key West has a few lovely small beaches. Fort Zachary Taylor State Park has one of the least crowded. Smathers Beach is popular with teens, while Higgs Beach appeals to the gay crowd.


Fantasies Fulfilled


Duval Street is Key West’s Bourbon Street, and local bars are legend. Hemingway characterized Sloppy Joe’s owner in one of his books. He also drank at Captain Tony’s Saloon, mentioned in a Jimmy Buffet song. Another of Buffet’s hits sets the tequila-haze ambiance of his Margaritaville Café.


Each October, Key West travel means Fantasy Fest, a Halloween-meets-Mardi-Gras body-painted bacchanal. Although public nudity is officially taboo, it happens there, so if that’s not your thing, don’t go. If it is, however, the Garden of Eden rooftop bar is clothing-optional year-round. Clothing is also optional poolside at Tea by the Sea, popular with the longstanding local gay scene.


Key Lime Time


The Key Lime Pie Company dishes out the real deal at two locations. Hemingway once boxed at what is now Ricky’s Blue Heaven restaurant. After dinner, fire up an El Hemingway from the Conch Republic Cigar Factory on “Cigar Alley.”


For an authentic Key West Florida experience, pick up a free copy of Sharon Wells' Walking & Biking Guide to Historic Key West, and head up the back-streets of Bahama Village before it becomes over-gentrified.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:06 PM   #125
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Well, I did it! I did book airfare. I found a great rate today out of Boston for non-stop flights (that is they are non-stop right now ) and I just went ahead and did it. I checked out JetBlue's vacation week prices and SW's prices for heavily traveled weeks and I felt I got a pretty good deal. I booked a Delta flight out on Orbitz. Orbitz offers a price guarantee that provides you a check if the price of the flight goes down at any time up until the day you fly, so in that way I am protected from making a huge mistake, but it's not SW or JetBlue.

If anyone else wants to look into it, it's a flight out of Boston on Thursday the 16th returning on the 26th. Delta.com has the same deal too, but without the price guarantee. It's a heart attack price, but from what everyone has been counseling me about over on the transportation forum, I think I got a price that seems in line with what I have been seeing for non-vacation weeks for direct flights lately.

This will prevent my innevitable gut wrench every year trying to hit the booking window for SW. I also always loose money with SW - I have $40 right now about to expire with no hope of using it.

I sooo hope I don't regret this. But even my very cautious and frugal husband said to do it.

The awesome news is that I think we really are going on this cruise this time
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Old 06-20-2008, 02:01 PM   #126
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Can a CA couple come play?

We're Wes (50) and Deanna (52) Treigle from Hollister, CA and we're booked on this cruise also!

This is our second Disney Cruise and first "Western".

We too are struggling with airfare costs but hopefull they will drop a little in $$ before too long.

Look forward to meeting everyone!
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Old 06-20-2008, 11:41 PM   #127
cctimmom
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welcome aboard Wes and Deanna!


flights... UGH! I just checked, and out of Boston, lowest I'm finding is $350+ How come I'm betting that's considered a "good price"? It just wasn't non-stop.

PS... I'll post some Key West pics from our RCCL cruise back in April. I'm still doing a write up on that cruise... I've written 7 pages and only gotten through 3 days.
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Old 06-21-2008, 09:23 AM   #128
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Welcome Wes and Deanna!

As far as airfare goes, we will be using Southwest, and free flights! The whole family will be earning one this year, so we will have 5. And only need to use 2, since its the 2 of us! I just have to wait for them to open up the schedule and book it immediately!
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Old 06-22-2008, 05:45 AM   #129
o4me2playn
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Airfares

Well, I have just about enough frequent flyer miles on American for 2 free flights. Right now the schedules are terrible. We want to fly in a day early but we're still almost 10 hours in the air! We'll be exhausted even before we get to the ship HA!

So here's to hoping and praying that the economy and airfares get better soon!

Deanna(and Wes) Treigle
Hollister, CA
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Old 06-23-2008, 08:09 AM   #130
castlegazer
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HI there Deanna and Wes!

Welcome!

My sister's name is Deanna and she is 53!

Oh, man, this airfare thing. I think I actually got a good deal. I have been watching since I booked and it's doing nothing but go up. I am paying about $340 roundtrip for direct flights on Delta out of Boston mid day, right when I want the flights to be - so hopefully I don't get time shifts, but that would be OK if it happens. What I would really be mad about would be losing the direct flight.

If anyone else books this flight, we are on the 11:10 am flight out on Thursday and the 3:00 pm flight back home on Sunday.

I wanted the whole day on Friday to be at the beach or park. We have a condo in Cocoa Beach at the pier. It's such a beautiful place!


Well, I just sent my son off for his first day of outdoor camp, and first day ever of camp, and it's a severe thunderstorms right now, with hail the size of pennies pelting my car just a minute ago. I am having major Mommy anxiety right now.

OK - so I need a big photo break so here goes Deck 9/10 - ah, I didn't get to spend much time here last trip - The mickey pool was more my speed with a 14 month old, but alas, I have high hopes for the next cruise!:

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Old 06-24-2008, 08:00 AM   #131
castlegazer
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Lesson learned from yesterday: the resiliency of children will never cease to amaze.

Everything went just fine at the camp yesterday and he came home in one piece with not one word about the storm or scary lightning!

Hope all is well with everyone today.
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Last edited by castlegazer; 06-24-2008 at 08:09 AM.
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Old 06-25-2008, 07:41 AM   #132
castlegazer
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FYI: The Delta direct flight out of Boston is at a low price (or as low as it as been lately) again right now. About $353 roundtrip.

If anyone is looking to jump prior to JetBlue or SW.
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Old 06-28-2008, 08:34 AM   #133
aljsmom
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I'm back!


I didn't get any notifications, checked the board for a while and then got too busy and stopped. What a mistake! Wow, I've got a lot to catch up on.

My girls are very excited to know there will be so many local kids their ages to hang with.

More later, I have to go mow the lawn before the next wave of thunderstorms hits.
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Old 06-28-2008, 08:42 PM   #134
cctimmom
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I'm only having the Delta flights come up at almost $566/each. I'll have to just keep checking...



In the meantime... I just came up with a question... the kids' clubs... is there an additional charge to put your kids in these, or is it part of the cost of the cruise?
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Old 06-28-2008, 08:46 PM   #135
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ps.... when do JetBlue and Southwest open up their tickets for April? (we will probably fly down Friday afternoon/evening)
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