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Old 10-28-2009, 11:37 AM   #1
CRdisMom
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An October trip to get my first APs! Boy my hubby is in trouble now

I have DD3 who is in the process of potty training. We've pulled out all the stops to get us over that last hump and Mickey worked out to saving grace. Ah the power of Disney.

Our cast of characters is

Me-Laura, discovered my inner Disney freak on our last trip May '07
DD7-Beth
DH-Tim


DD3-Katie, the trainee of all things potty.

Our next family trip is scheduled for Oct 16-23, 2010. We are from MN and this is the magical week of MEA or fall break. I know there will be a million people from MN there but we need to go back. Our 12th anniversary will be on the 23. We went to WDW for our honeymoon so it will be good to go back.

In May 2007, we stayed at POP and did the DXDP. It was perfect. We did not bring Katie with us on that trip so we have always had a bit of guilt around it. The POP room was a little tight so we are looking to upgrade.

Our current plans are to stay on property at a moderate, at least someplace with queen beds and to do the DXDP.

Join me for my struggle to find ADRs and the best possible deal for a room. Keeping my fingers crossed for a Pin.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:31 PM   #2
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okay this is starting off a little slow. It takes a lot to out down your thoughts. I got so excited today when I went to the mailbox and found a flyer from Disney. IT WAS A PIN!!!!!! unfortunately the pin expires before we leave. I have "booked" our rooms at CSR. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I get a discount.

Now on to my ADRS. I have laid out my plans based on the deluxe dining. I have yet to get the DH to commit to anything so this is all so tough.

DDs are getting excited. Beth has said yes to BBB again as long as she doesn'.t have to wear a dress and Katie will do anything her big sis does.

I have made a commitment to myself to drop 20lbs before we go. I figure 11 months should be enough time to do that. It will make all the clothes fit soooo much better.
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Old 11-16-2009, 03:32 PM   #3
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Laura - I didn't realized you honeymooned in WDW! How neat! Any pics from that trip? I love the pic of you all in the dining car at Sci Fi! Beth has the biggest smile. So cute!

Yea about Katie's potty training!

Do they have to wear costumes at BBB? That place opened when my girls were too big (or thought they were) to do the dress up thing.

Good luck on the weight loss. I think that I won't even try until after New Year's. I will kick up the exercise, though.

Are you all set on DXDP? For this trip, we started w/the counter service plan, then upgraded to the DDP. I am anxious to see how we like it, and off to see what the difference between DXDP and DDP is!

Any idea when the discounts will come out for your travel period?

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Old 11-19-2009, 08:37 AM   #4
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BBB doesn't require that you dress up. I find that it just added that little extra bit of magic. I'm thinking Beth will dress up again. I found a great Jasmine costume at the end of last year. Very comfortable. She wears it around the house so I wouldn't be surprised if she put it on for BBB.

The weight isn't moving. I need to give up soda and that will be the kick to get going.

Now on to the planning.......

At the begining of the month I had requested the Disney Rewards Visa. In the meantime I had called CSR to put a hold on a room while I waited for the card to arrive. Well the card took longer than I thought and the ressie was canceled. When I called back to book the room I found out that CSR was completely booked! So I put us at POP and went to go do some more research. I really perplexed as to what to do. Everyone loved CSR and the queen beds. I knew that we needed to be at a moderate but I had a hard time spending the extra money just to get the same size bed. Then I talked to on of my non-dis friends and he mentioned that they stayed at POR with his family of 5. I asked how and he said the room had a trundle bed. AhH the answer to my prayers. My girls don't sleep well together. The trundle with be good. So I changed our ressies to POR with request to be in building 14 in Alligator Bayou. DDs are going to love it because last years bible school theme was Crocodile Rock so it will be great to show them more of the LA area without going in the swamp

Now the numbers game. I have worked out a massive spreadsheet with prices for everything. The rack rate on the room is 170-195 night while we are there. Which puts the room at $1,210 without taxes. Park hopper tickets are $1,078. Those two things are pretty much done but now I am struggling over dining. The deluxe dining plan is $71.99 for adults and $20.99 for kids, which works out to be $1,301.


I know that we are going to do: restaurant and family price (no tax/tip)

Ohana 59.96
Askerhaus 71.96
Hollywood and vine 71.96
Tuskerhouse 59.96
Crystal Palace 59.96
1900 Parkfare 59.96


Sci Fi 77.70
Coral Reef 96.12
Pinocchio 45.18
liberty square 64.12
resort quick service 45.18
resort quick service 45.18
FlameTree BBQ 50.70

Biergarten 79.96
Cindy's Table 139.96 (2 credits)
chief Mickey 89.96
Le Cellier 124
California Grill 168.00 (2 credits)
resort dinner 93.12
for a grand total of $1501. if I add snacks 56 snacks at 3 each that is $168. For a total of $1670 or savings of 25% The food prices are based off several places posting current menus and an assumption of what we will order. I am hoping that I will be able to get Le Cellier. I am going to be as flexible as possible. Knowing the costs it works out that each meal needs to be $61 or more to break even on the plan, excluding all snacks.

I know that it was tooooo much food last time. but I really enjoy having a sit down meal 3 times a day. It really afforded us a break in the mid day. I am hoping to add more breaks this trip thus the 2 days with a resort lunch. The girls will want to take advantage of the pool on Ol'man river.
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Old 01-07-2010, 08:47 AM   #5
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9 months and counting...yikes! Our major milestone has been reached. Katie is wearing underwear all the time. Happy Dance! Now I really need to get this all planned out and paid for as hell hath no furry like a 3 year old who doesn't get their way. hee-hee

The holidays flew by faster than I could have ever imagined. We put the word out that we were planning a trip in October and when it came time to open presents at my parents, they were really good to us. They said we want to help you get to Disney. Love the sight of cash on Christmas. I was told that my grandparents always helped them when we went as kids and they wanted to help us. I said you should come with us, my mom looked like she was about to say yes and then said we'll think about it. What I have I done. I would like to have them there but I don't think it would be very relaxing or fun. Only time will tell. I won't bring it up again.

My new concern is that my DD7 will spoil the "magic" for DD3. Beth has been saying "Mickey isn't real all the time". My heart breaks to hear her say that. I'm thinking some kids at school have been teasing her for the princess lunchbox and her talk of a trip. She just is at the point where she is starting to form herself. I pulled her aside and explained it is fun to have an imagination and enjoy seeing characters. People who don't get are missing something and want to make everyone else miserable. She is doing better now but I still think she has some suspicion of the princesses. I just want her to believe or at least enjoy the story.

Tim is on board for the trip too. We had the dreaded budget talk and I just realize I need to get more aware of where our cash is going or this trip won't happen. Got my coupon from Costco for Turbo tax so I will those done soon. Hoping for a decent refund. I just need to stay away from Target.
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CRdisMom View Post
My new concern is that my DD7 will spoil the "magic" for DD3. Beth has been saying "Mickey isn't real all the time". My heart breaks to hear her say that. I'm thinking some kids at school have been teasing her for the princess lunchbox and her talk of a trip. She just is at the point where she is starting to form herself. I pulled her aside and explained it is fun to have an imagination and enjoy seeing characters. People who don't get are missing something and want to make everyone else miserable. She is doing better now but I still think she has some suspicion of the princesses. I just want her to believe or at least enjoy the story.
Oh Laura that's a shame although i have to say Cj never really thought they were the real and actual ones because in her 5 yr old head she knew they were animation and she loooved and still loooves them just the same!! It's just a shame that some kids have spoilt it for her as that is just mean
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Old 01-27-2010, 09:14 AM   #7
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pulled the trigger today. We are officially staying off site. I am still kind of upset by this but with everyone's indivual needs, this will be for the best. We are staying in Linfield Estates. Seems to be just a bit southeast of the newest entrance near POP. Now I have to add the worry of getting a car. Can't do that until we have our flights nailed down. Still waiting on AirTran and Southwest to release their fall schedules. Strongly debating sending a package to the condo before we get there so I won't have to pay the silly bagage fee. Although we will have a washer/dryer for the 8 days.


https://grandpalmsorlandovacations.com/home.html This is where we are staying. It is a friend of my daughter's parents place. Got a great deal

I am still going with the plan to hit the parks early with the character breakfasts and leave in the afternoon and come back for dinner. I am going to get an annual pass and the Tables in Wonderland card. I am hoping that this will make up for the dining plan savings. Plus with the AP we will get free parking. That can add up real quick.

I sounds like there maybe some other Dis'ers there the week I am there so hoping to say Hi to a few of them.
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Old 01-28-2010, 10:18 AM   #8
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I will be there the same week as you. We are there Oct 16 to 24th. Booked at CBR last week, but hoping that a pin code will come up for October. We are out of school that week for a Fall festival. We are bringing me, DH and DS 7, and DS 2 who will turn 3 on our trip. It seems like so far away, but it's so fun to plan!! I love the board because my husband doesn't want to talk about it so far ahead. Our kids are right about the same age- would be fun to meet!
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Old 01-28-2010, 11:08 AM   #9
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we are from MN. where are you from?
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Old 02-10-2010, 09:45 AM   #10
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okay we were wild and crazy this last weekend. Tim was in Vegas for work and on Thursday night he called and asked if I wanted to come out to Vegas for the weekend. I didn't think I could pull it off in 24 hours. I have never been out there before and had no idea what to expect. This was a good thing and bad.

I said I would go if I got get out there and stay for under $500. Priceline gave me several different quotes for airfare that seemed soooo far out of reach. $600 round trip. Way tooo rich for me. Then I did the bidding process. talk about terrifying. I didn't win with my bids.Plus I was thinking that we were going to stay at the MGM Grand and the rate for the weekend was $440. I did more research and found that if you book a package airfare and the hotel can be really cheap. Now remember I had never been there before. I got a deal for the Wynn for $466. I attempted to pull the trigger on it but it was gone before I hit enter. Dang! Then one for $500 popped up for the Stratosphere. I grabbed it. It also included a car. So called my parents, cashed in all reamining brownie points with them, and begged them to take my girls and the dog and I was set.

Now my flight was at 3:40 on Friday afternoon, I neede to pick up some Vegas style shirts. I hit the Mall of America on my way down to the airport and had great luck 3 shirts and a pair of jeans. Some quick arranging in the suitcase and I was off to the airport. Got there in plenty time, breezed thru security. Actually got to the gate as the plane before mine was leaving. Had a thought that I should see if I could fly stand-by. I was tired so I didn't---d'oh! I so should have.

We board the plane on time. I was surprised that the plane was so empty. Just couldn't figure it out until I hear, Chicago has limited the number of flights coming and going. AGHHH I have a hate for O'hare. Everytime I fly in or out of there, it is delayed. So it turns out that they won't let us off the ground for another 1.5 hours. This is BAD, my connecting flight will leave while we are just getting to the gate. So off I run to the counter to find out if it doesn't work out, I'm sleeping in O'hare. (okay I wouldn't actually sleep there I'd call a friend but you get my drift). So I say a few prayers and she moves me up to the bulkhead rows. We take off a15 min early ---good sign. We land, I grabbed my carryon and ran to the next gate. Just as I was getting there that flight got pushed back 2 hours. I didn't have to run. so more time to kill. I couldn't drink because I hadn't eaten and I was picking up a rental car. Time creeps by soooo slowly. We finally got on the plane. There were a group of frat boys headed out and they spent the dealy in the bar. Yup you guessed it I got to sit next to them. Actually it wasn't too bad until the attendant said all of the beer on the plane was frozen because they forgot to take the dry ice off of it. I thought they were going to go all but instead they ordered lots of hard booze. Took a nice nap and watched "this is it" while listening to the country station. Very funny especially with the commentary from my neighbors.


Landed and got to baggage claim and there was Tim. He didn't look well. He was pale and had a fever. Uh-oh! Turns out some of they guys were sick and he think he caught something but he'll be fine. He had checked into the stratosphere before I got there and was laughing because it isnt a good hotel or in a good part of town. Since he had stayed at the MGM and moved north on the strip, his co-workers warned him how rough it is there. I thought yeah they are pulling his legged. Ummm--yea they were dead on. I drove up to the hotel and I didn't want to get out. The ramp had peeling paint on it and there was garabage on the floor. Yuck! I was so tired I went with it. I should have broken out the camera but didn't. The elevator had chips in the walls and there was a strange smell. Once into the Casino, the carpet was thread bare in a few places. The clietal was a rough crowd. Our room was okay. The pillow cases had holes on the seams. Yes I look at these things. The bathroom was okay..no mold. I washed up and crawled into bed. I was done. It was 3 am in Vegas which was 5 am in MN. I was toast.
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Old 02-10-2010, 10:43 AM   #11
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now some photos...

The Strosphere tower



The lovely giftshop next door


Uncle Eddie's RV....


The shops at the Forum--ahh I could do some real damage there. Oh and I did.




The Ventian. I am staying here next time.






The gondola ride was beauiful. Our gondolier was named Vinny. He had a wonderful voice and sang to us. We found that as you go under each bridge you get a kiss from the one you love.

From there we walked down the stip toward Paris and the fashion mall.


I wish I would have taken more photos. It was raining and I didn't have my waterproof camera with me. We had lunch in a resturant at Fashion mall. I didn't take pictures because it wasn't anything to write home about. One regret from this trip was that I hadn't planned out the dinning.

After eating we hopped on the monorail back to the hotel to get ready for dinner and the show we were going to. We drove down the stip to see the sights. I was shocked how long it took to make it from one end to the other. We did make plans to eat at the MGM before our 8 pm Crazy Horse show. We ate at Emerils --wonderful food but really bad service. I was shocked. I actually pulled the buser aside and asked for service. Soon the manager appeared with strong apologies. I didn't bring my camera as I only had a clutch and it didn.t fit in there. I think I had the Ahi tuna and Tim had blue crab something with a side of mac-n-cheese. Oh that was the best I have EVER had. I amd still trying to find the reciepe. It was made with white cheese and ham..yummy.

Our 8pm show was at Crazy Horse. It was a burlesque show. Tim had picked up the tickets when he was staying there. They gave him fantastic seats. We were in the 2nd row. We order a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. Oh so yummy. The show was amazing. Those ladies are very talented. I think they were on toe for half the show. Yes it was top less but I kind of forgot half way thru. Very neat.

Once the show was done, Tim was getting worse. He had a fever and the chills. We stopped by Wolfgang Puck's for some chicken soup and headed back to the hotel for the night. No clubbing for me. Oh well. It was a good choice, Tim tossed and turned all night long. I went down to the convience store at the Stratosphere and got meds for him and they didn.t help. So no sleep.

We got up and had a gormuet breakfast at Mc Donalds and were off to the airport. I dropped him off and drove out towards Henderson.. the mountains were beautiful . I had packed my camera in the trunk so no pics.

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Old 02-10-2010, 11:00 AM   #12
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I came back to the strip as I had 3 hours to kill before my flight and we hadn't seen New York.



I road the coaster. I thought of Cammie and the RnR, It was fast and abrupt. I forgot about the inversions. ekk



I ate a small bakery on the strip. Oh yummy creme brulee.

Got to the airport and returned the car without incident. Everything looked like smooth sailing. Got in the air and soon were over the dam and grand canyon. Since we didn't make it out there I took pictures from the airplane..



See the lighter area above the dam, that shows where the water level used to be.

Lake Mead








The rest of the flights were uneventful. Until I got home. There was 5 inches of snow and ice on the ground. Did a 360 in the middle of the interstate on the way home. The lord above watched over me so I didn't hit ANYTHING.

Got home to a sick hubby and sick kids. Tim has the worst strep throat our GP has ever seen. Tim got a shot of penecillin in the bottom and a steriod in the arm for the swollen tonsils. He is miserable. Katie has a nasty cough and a fever. Her's is viral. So back to the grind...

I need to get more planned for October. I know I will have a ton of Disney dollars after this weekend.
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Old 03-19-2010, 04:35 PM   #13
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hi Laura! I just found this- and am subbing late! I knew you had said Tim was sick in LV, but OH! What a crazy trip!! I've never been to LV, but friends are trying to get us to go with them next year, so maybe I'll go then...I don't know. So sorry you didn't get the Wynn- I heard it's really nice- as well as the Venetian and Bellagio. I think my friends want to stay at one of them...well, I guess I can tell them to stay away from the Stratosphere, huh?

And I loved the pics from the plane- yet another place I want to go to, the GC. Our time of year for vacations doesn't really go with it, though. Maybe someday we'll just have to suck it up in the heat of August.

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Old 03-26-2010, 02:42 PM   #14
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wooo-hooo! got airfare booked for $800 for the entire clan. Love Southwest. I have ignored this for a bit but now that I have my dates set I need to get going on the ADRs. I know that the hours won't be released for a few more weeks but I need to have an idea before April 19 rolls around.
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Old 08-04-2010, 12:37 PM   #15
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Wow I have neglected this

We are near two months away and most everything is falling into place. I have my ressies and everything seems to be moving along smoothly.

Thursday--arrival. no parks just unwind and relax. wait for Dsis and Dbil to get there.

Friday--BBB at 8 am. The girls are going to be surprised by this one. I am just hoping we can get thru will call before our appointment. Then off to CRT for a late lunch. Then off to play in the parks. We will head back for a late rest then over to Wilderness Lodge for dinner and back to the parks for fireworks

Sat: Animal Kingdom, with early ressies at Tusker House. This is the best secret. Get into the park before it opens and eat there. Love seeing them empty. Even better than EMHs. Leaving early and bbq at the condo. Relaxing night.

Sunday: Hollywood Studios. We have no early entry plans for here. Couldn't justify the playhouse breakfast since none of the characters are ones my kids know. We have lunch plans at Sci Fi. Love a good burger and malt. Yummy! Then a break and off to Ohana for a big dinner.

Monday: Epcot Askerhus early breakfast again. Can you tell my girls are princesses? Then drinking around the world topped off by dinner at the biergarten

Tuesday--It's my BIRTHDAY DAY!! Yup spending the day at MK. So excited. We are starting off at 1900 parkfare. The day is pretty open. Since there is MNSSHP that night we are saving my dinner for Wed at the Contemp to see the fireworks

Wed: Epcot. Might be a late start day not sure. I know the value of getting going but the rest of the crew may need some more sleep

Thurs Beach or Canaveral day

Friday Crystal Place for breakfast and then park hopping

Sat--home. I'm guessing I will have tears again

I am hoping to sneak in a few DISmeets. but we will see...
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