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Old 02-15-2010, 04:11 PM   #1
exwdwcm
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Did we really just buy DVC at BLT? Taking MIL in Dec! Acronyms abound!

WHAT: first stay at 'home' as DVC at BLT!
WHEN: Dec 4-11, 2010
WHERE: BLT 1bdrm, BLV
HOW: we just bought DVC!!!
WHY: because we can!


TABLE OF CONTENTS


Thanks for joining in the chaos. As I wrap up my most recent Dec 09 trip report, I figured I might as well start for December 2010! We just made our ressies and cannot wait to go back.

So who are we? We've been married almost 10 years, together for almost 20 and live just outside the DFW area, in a suburb called Plano, TX.


Me-
Michelle- 36yo, type A, perfectionist, disney freak, mom to 1, wife, full time marketing manager, scrapbooker, sports fan, fan of all disney things (especially parks), past cast member as part of the 1996 fall college program.

Alan
- my other half- 38yo, dad, husband, quiet, usually looks angry, but that's just him, doesn't smile much (except when at WDW with our son!). Works in real estate, loves working out/lifting weights and mustangs/cars.

Pooh- our sweet dear son. An IVF miracle to us. Currently 2.5 years old, will be just over 3 at time of travel. Typical boy, inherited my OCD already, and is HUGE- 90th percentile for height and weight. Loves Pooh bear and Mou-Mou (mickey). Currently 37 inches tall!

Here is our family- Alan is actually smiling- a rare thing!


MIL/Granny- my mother in law- I actually have a great one! so forget the usual evil MIL stuff- she's fantastic! She lives about 3 hours away in OK, works at a chocolate shop and loves her grandkids. She raised 3 great sons. She's never been to disney!

This is a trip I never imagined would happen. You see, we just returned from 9 nights at the Wilderness Lodge on a magical, all out trip with my entire extended family of 14, including my parents, 2 sisters, they hubbies and kids, my cousin, her nephew and a great aunt. you can read my trip report in progress here!
DEC 09 TRIP REPORT

I figured that would be the last trip for at least a couple of years. We typically only go every other year or i sneak in a day or two if i am in Orlando on business. You see, I am married to a disney grump. Or he used to be a disney grump. He would come to WDW, have a good time, but didn't want involved in the planning and didn't want to stay super long. So 9 nights was a long time for him, but things were different this trip- we had our son. Baby changes everything right? Right. It really did. We had a blast and I think my DH saw how much fun our son was having (at the ripe old age of 26 months- as much fun as a toddler can have) and decided Disney IS pretty magical.


Heck, he even mentioned maybe we should do the DVC tour when we noticed the little table tent promotion in our room. Of course it didn't hurt that you get $100 gift card for doing it. So on one of the last few days of our trip in early December, we were coming back in to the lodge by boat and passed by the DVC desk - i asked if we could stop and see about a tour- as our son was not yet cranky and it might be a good time right before his nap. so we stopped and were picked up within minutes and whisked off in our carriage (okay, big white van with car seat) to the DVC center at Saratoga Springs.


There, my DH asked all the tough questions- he works in commercial real estate for a REIT, and is a numbers guy. I just admired the pretty decorations in the rooms and dreamed of how great it would be to own. Oh yeah, and those numbers.....oh whatever, pretty balcony, pretty bed, pretty jacuzzi tub........


We enjoyed our tour with our guide, Tony and our son was well behaved throughout. The free juice box and cookies didn't hurt. We passed on the ice cream on the way out and collected our $100 gift card which we applied to our balance on our account at the lodge from tips on dining.


I was shocked that DH even agreed to sit at the desk, much less do the tour and much less actually consider DVC. So we returned home and i kept pushing and pushing, not wanting DVC to fall out of mind. Finally, he agreed we could move forward. Apparently he said he had planned to surprise me for our 10th wedding anniv, next year, but why not just do it now. So we did! We called up Tony and bought 200 points at BLT with a June use year! We couldn't more ecstatic. My once disney grump of a husband is now a disney fan!


So now that we are DVC, i, of course could not waste one more second without booking! I immediately called up Tony and he connected me with member services so we could book our first trip HOME as DVC members! woo hoo.......but to my dismay, our dates were not available completely. DH was so excited about going, he invited his mom and stepdad to go with us. We had decided on December 4-11, 2010. A saturday- saturday. That would give us sunday to recoup before returning to work.


So member services checks and there are no one bedrooms available for 2 nights in the middle of that week. Tony made some magic happen though and they found a lake view 1 bedroom for us at BLT for those dates. So now we are all booked. We are waitlisted for a standard view, but who knows if that will come through. We borrowed a few points to get the lake view.


so now we are all set and ready to go! oh wait, we have over 9 months to go. crap! Well the last trip we had planned for almost two years, so 9 months should be a breeze! right ?
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
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84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT

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Old 02-22-2010, 08:55 AM   #2
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So got our official confirmation in the mail today! We are now all confirmed for 12/4-12/11! Yeah!

I also found a great deal on flights, but we haven't booked just yet. HOpefully soon- found direct from DFW to MCO for under $200 each. The cheapest I usually find direct on AA is $250. and in December for our most recent trip, we paid $300.
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT
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Old 04-12-2010, 12:17 PM   #3
exwdwcm
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So it's done- airfare is booked. I know, we are still like 7 plus months out, but we like to plan early! Plus, i found a great deal on American Airlines direct for about $215 a person. Can't beat that out of Dallas. The cheapest I've ever found it is about $250. In December, we paid $300 plus. So I snatched it up fast. Got all 5 of our tickets booked now and they had the perfect times for us too.

Saturday, December 4th
Depart DFW- 6:55am
Arrive MCO- 10:20am

Saturday, December 11th
Depart MCO- 6:05pm
Arrive DFW- 8:10pm

We also sorted out more details and obviously have our dates firmed up!

My MIL and FIL live in Oklahoma, about 2 hours north of us in Plano (suburb just 20 minutes from DFW). So they will drive down the night before we leave- on Friday night and stay with us. Then I am hoping I can pay my sister or someone to drive us at the crack of dawn to the airport.....might involve some bribery or something to make that happen! We decided to book a somewhat late departure, so we could still enjoy some of the park (probably MK since it is walking distance from BLT) that morning. With the awesome hotel airline check in and bag service, i figure we don't need a ton of time to make it to MCO, so we can probably play until about 3:45ish or so on departure day.

this is also a first for me- we typically leave on a pretty early flight or at least by lunchtime. I've never stayed on departure day so late. We would have stayed through Sunday, but we found in December, that we really need a full day to recoup before returning to work and the 'grind' that is life, especially with the holidays approaching quickly after our trip. So returning late Saturday means my inlaws will crash with us again and head home on Sunday am.

So next up is my search for a good rental car deal!!!!!
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT

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Old 04-15-2010, 05:24 AM   #4
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Your story gives me so much hope! I am dating a Disney grump (love that!)... so I'm hoping that if we ever get married and have kids that will change! But that's great that your husband let you get DVC! And that it was his idea!

I'm sort of leaning and considering doing the same dates you are (4-11th) so I can have Sunday off to recoup. The DBF works Wed - Sat, so he'll have two days before he has to go back to work, but I'll have to go the next day. The only thing that scares me are the POP Warner crowds. How bad will the parks be on Sunday?

Anyhoo, your PTR is off to a great start! Seven months or so can't go by fast enough!!
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Old 04-26-2010, 02:19 PM   #5
exwdwcm
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Originally Posted by PalmettoPrincess View Post
Your story gives me so much hope! I am dating a Disney grump (love that!)... so I'm hoping that if we ever get married and have kids that will change! But that's great that your husband let you get DVC! And that it was his idea!

I'm sort of leaning and considering doing the same dates you are (4-11th) so I can have Sunday off to recoup. The DBF works Wed - Sat, so he'll have two days before he has to go back to work, but I'll have to go the next day. The only thing that scares me are the POP Warner crowds. How bad will the parks be on Sunday?

Anyhoo, your PTR is off to a great start! Seven months or so can't go by fast enough!!
LOL, there is HOPE! i never in a million years imagined we would own DVC. but our son changed all that! i had never even considered doing the tour because i knew DH just wasn't a huge disney person. He only put up with it because of me. He doesn't 'love it', but he definitely sees the value in the memories now and has a good time! we are both excited to share the magic with his parents, especially his mom.

the POP crowds are not bad. It is all relative and truly depends on where you stay. They are in competition and practice during the day, so you rarely see them in the parks, and if you do, it is only in the evenings. I only saw pop kids twice out and about in a 10 day trip. once in queue for space mtn (football boys- so respectful) and then 2 girls on a bus one night. other than that, we only saw them at the resort.

unfortunately we were staying at POR that year, which was the POP Warner overflow hotel (or for those POP warner families choosing a moderate). it was crazy. we had to call security on them one night- they were running around screaming and yelling at midnight, waking my 2yo niece. The pool and food court were always crowded too.

so as long as you are NOT staying where POP is (which is typically the All Star resorts), then you are fine. I am not sure which moderate is their overflow this year. There was rumor it was POR again, then I have also heard inklings and mentions of CSR or POFQ too. If you are in a deluxe, you have nothing to worry about. they really don't affect the parks at all.

i do know they close the HS early one night for a private party for them, i think on a wednesday maybe? I can't be sure. so just look when the DEC hours come out.

and THANKS for reading!
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT
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Old 04-26-2010, 03:08 PM   #6
exwdwcm
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So the crazy planning has begun!! Being the OCD planner that i am, i've had our itinerary ready for a while now. However, the EMH hours are really throwing me. I can't wait for DEC hours to be released, hopefully in just about a month from now. I tried using historical EMH, but comparing those to Nov hours, it seems a little different this year. So who knows. We do like to use EMH, so that will have an effect on which park we do in the am and pm.

So here is how i create our schedule:
  • Look at EMH- we like to try and do a few mornings and a few evening ones.
  • find a good MVMCP night- on a weeknight, not weekend
  • Ensure we get a night at MK for spectro
  • ensure we get a night at Epcot for Illuminations
  • Ensure we get a night at HS for Osborne lights (skipping fantasmic probably)
  • Ensure we have an early AM at HS to get TSM first thing!
  • make sure we have an afternoon at DTD
  • need a night 'at home' at BLT to catch WISHES from top of world lounge
  • need to spread out parks and not do the same one in a row
  • visit MK and epcot early on!
  • fit in 2 character breakfasts without cutting into park time
  • ONE sit down meal per day
So trying to fit all of these things into 7-8 days is tough! lol We really only have 6 FULL days and then almost all of arrival day and probably until 3:30 or 4pm on our departure day (especially if we use the resort airline check in and baggage service).

we typically take a 2 hour break each day. our son will be 3 years old (and two months) when we go, so he will still need a little break, even if it isn't a nap. We are going to try and push through AK one day pretty hard without a break until late. unfortunately he doesn't do much sleeping in his stroller, but if he does, we will go as long as we can, but want to enjoy BLT some too! We try and do some morning EMHs, but my FIL isn't a morning person i don't think, so i hate to push it too early. Plus we will do at least one early breakfast at MK, so we might pass on the AM EMHs this trip, but still try and arrive by opening or RD. (avoiding the EMH am park of course)


So here is the first pass at the schedule, let's see how much it changes when the real hours come out in a month!!!!

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 3
in laws drive the 2 hours south to Dallas from OK to stay the night

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 4
6:55am departure from DFW on AA, arrive MCo 10:20am
check in at BLT, leave bags, head to DTD- lunch at Earle
Evening at Epcot, dinner at Teppan Edo (a first for us)!
Illuminations

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 5
Crystal Palace breakfast (early, 7:45??)
MK in the am, lunch in room at BLT
PM at HS (EMH?), Osborne Lights, fast food dinner at HS

MONDAY, DECEMBER 6

breakfast in room
AM at Epcot, lunch QS eat around world showcase
early dinner at Ohana (5pm)
PM at MK (EMH?) Spectro

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 7
breakfast in room
AM at AK, lunch at Yak & Yeti QS (a first!), stay AK until 3 or 4
PM open- swim, DTD, rest in room, catch WISHES from top of world lounge

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 8
breakfast in room
AM at HS (TSM!!), lunch at Sci Fi Dine Inn
PM at Epcot (EMH?), QS dinner at Sunshine Seasons

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 9
breakfast in room
AM at Epcot and eat around the world, lunch at CHefs de France
early dinner in room (or QS at MK)
PM at MK- MVMCP!!!!!!!

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 10
breakfast in room
AM at MK, QS lunch Cosmic Ray's
PM Epcot, dinner Le Cellier

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 11 (departure day)
sleep in AM! use resort airline checkin and leave bags
late breakfast at Chef Mickey's (10am?)
open day- either head over to MK or DTD
3:30pm- leave for airport (6:05pm flight)


So my concerns are that we are doing Chef Mickey's on our last day, that way we don't have to rush around on another day, competing with park time. but i worry it is our last day and maybe i should move it up?

i only have a 3/4 day for AK. we do love AK and didn't get back on a second day last year like we planned. i am hoping we can tackle it in a 3/4 day. instead of taking our usual 2pm or so break, i figure we will push on til about 3 or 4pm as needed this day, since we will just have the evening free at the hotel. we will skip Kali rapids, but really want to do just about everything else. We missed the train and conservation station last time. we need to catch at least one show, either Nemo or Lion King, we missed both last time too. Can we do it in 3/4 of a day??
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT

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Old 04-28-2010, 08:51 PM   #7
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I finally made it here! Haha! School had me tied down and prevented me from getting on here, but I made it! Subbing!
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:53 AM   #8
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I finally made it here! Haha! School had me tied down and prevented me from getting on here, but I made it! Subbing!
Welcome Britt!!

So good news this week- DH said he would like to do the MVMCP and the WISHES Dessert Party AND Candlelight Processional.

How am I going to fit that all in? lol!

We might skip the dessert party, not sure yet. We skipped the Candelight this past December since we had such a large party and not all were interested and I wasn't sure how well my son would sit through it. He will only sit in front of the tv for 10 minutes max, so a show that long is pushing it. I am not even sure he will be able to sit through it this year at 3. We will see- i'd love to see it again. I saw it back in 1996 when i was a cast member on the college program and Louis Gosset Jr. was the narrator, it was so beautiful! I know my MIL would enjoy it a lot too, so we will probably try the CP dining package. We have at least 3 sitdown meals planned at Epcot anyhow!

We have decided on December 9th- Thursday for our MVMCP night- we get the DVC discount, which is only a few bucks each (compared to the advanced price). Hoping to meet some of my DIS moms thread folks there that night too! Can't wait!


and so the planning continues............come on December hours!
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:15 PM   #9
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HI! Came over to stalk--i mean read!--your PTR as we're going the same days y'all are. DBF wasn't too into AK last year so we too are going to try to knock that out in less than a day and then find something else to do that evening. We're-ok I-am shooting for MVMCP on the 9th as well. He's a huge comic book geek so we're going to spend at least a day at US () so he can get pics with the super heroes! that was my little bribe to get him to go back to Disney this year

can't wait to read more!
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:28 PM   #10
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Hi! Coming on over from The December thread! I followed your last TR too. You are so far ahead of the game. I think I can get more into the planning once the official December hours are posted. We are taking our first trip Nov 30-Dec 9. Can' wait!!!
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Old 05-03-2010, 04:59 PM   #11
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Hi!! I am subbing! I saw you posted on Wendy's thread and followed you over. I am going back to read after I get the kids to sleep!! Is it 8:00 yet?
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Old 05-05-2010, 04:32 PM   #12
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Hey Michelle!! I'm here, let the party begin!!

First, you have a beautiful family! Your "Pooh" is very handsome!!

Second, congrats on BLT!! You and your son have converted your Disney grump, not an easy task!! DH and I were thinking of buying DVC this year, but since DH was laid off and took a job for less $$, we want to make sure we can still save and live on a smaller income. So far, so good, so maybe next year! Although, DH says he likes just renting points because we get a deal and don't have to pay any of the required fees!!

Nice score on the flights! I'm still waiting for prices to go down out of Detroit. Last year we were spoiled, we flew Spirit $9 one way and $40 the other. I think with fees and baggage, we paid less than $350 total for the 3 of us!

I think our schedules may overlap a little! I'm sure neither of our schedules are solidified yet, but I'll keep my eyes open for you in the parks!! Park hours next month!!

Can't wait to read more!!
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Old 05-06-2010, 09:31 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DenishaT View Post
HI! Came over to stalk--i mean read!--your PTR as we're going the same days y'all are. DBF wasn't too into AK last year so we too are going to try to knock that out in less than a day and then find something else to do that evening. We're-ok I-am shooting for MVMCP on the 9th as well. He's a huge comic book geek so we're going to spend at least a day at US () so he can get pics with the super heroes! that was my little bribe to get him to go back to Disney this year

can't wait to read more!
Welcome! yeah for MVMCp on 9th- looks like there might be quite a few of us! ah, that is fun on the comic book stuff- we are 'sci fi nerds' ourselves. But haven't made it over to US lately. We might wait a few more years until DS is older to tackle it again. But it is a blast!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinker_Tam View Post
Hi! Coming on over from The December thread! I followed your last TR too. You are so far ahead of the game. I think I can get more into the planning once the official December hours are posted. We are taking our first trip Nov 30-Dec 9. Can' wait!!!
I know, i can't wait for the hours!!! why won't they release them already? don't they know we are waiting? LOL WELCOME!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by my2disneyboys View Post
Hi!! I am subbing! I saw you posted on Wendy's thread and followed you over. I am going back to read after I get the kids to sleep!! Is it 8:00 yet?
Thank you for subbing!! lol at getting the kids to sleep- i SO know the feeling and I only have one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlwilliams9 View Post
Hey Michelle!! I'm here, let the party begin!!

First, you have a beautiful family! Your "Pooh" is very handsome!!

Second, congrats on BLT!! You and your son have converted your Disney grump, not an easy task!! DH and I were thinking of buying DVC this year, but since DH was laid off and took a job for less $$, we want to make sure we can still save and live on a smaller income. So far, so good, so maybe next year! Although, DH says he likes just renting points because we get a deal and don't have to pay any of the required fees!!

Nice score on the flights! I'm still waiting for prices to go down out of Detroit. Last year we were spoiled, we flew Spirit $9 one way and $40 the other. I think with fees and baggage, we paid less than $350 total for the 3 of us!

I think our schedules may overlap a little! I'm sure neither of our schedules are solidified yet, but I'll keep my eyes open for you in the parks!! Park hours next month!!

Can't wait to read more!!
Welcome!!! and thank you!!! wow on the flights- that is an awesome deal- never heard of deals that good before. hopefully something great pops up for you out of Detroit again. yes, we can all definitely compare schedules as we get closer, as we know, we will change them a million times before dec anyhow, right?

so how often have you guys rented points? we never have before, but now that I understand it, it is definitely a great way to go if you aren't DVC and need the extra room. WE simply can't wait to try out BLT!
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT
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Old 05-06-2010, 10:32 AM   #14
exwdwcm
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Thanks for following guys! I thought I would share a little bit more about us and some photos so you feel like you know a bit more about us as we go on this magical journey!!!

ME and the MOUSE. Childhood. My love started early. I always loved Disney and anything related to it. Our parents somehow managed to afford to drive us down to WDW in our blue station wagon and pop up camper at least twice as children. We stayed in Ft. Wilderness and I remember our excitement of reading through the birnbaum's guide, all that was available back then in the 80s. We went in 84 and 86. We had a ball. I even got to take my BF with me on the second trip. While we were on a budget, it was a blast and i still thank my lucky stars and my parents each day for making that possible.

fast forward a few years.....my love for disney continued, but of course teen years and HS got in the way. In 1992, i met my now husband- my freshman year of college. In 1993, we did a week long trip with my cousin (like a second mom), my great aunt, 2 other cousins and my sister Wendy. We stayed in a Fort Wilderness Cabin and it was great. But we weren't totally into the planning on that trip like we are now.


By college, i had heard about the Disney College Program during a marketing internship I did the summer after my freshman year. One of the other guys working with me had done the program. I didn't put much thought into it until almost my SR year of college. I applied, got in and did the Fall 1996 WDW college program. I had already been dating my now DH for about 3-4 years at that point and we lived together. So we were very serious and planned to get married after graduating college. So needless to say, DH was NOT happy that was I moving to Florida to live with thousands of other crazy college kids for 4 months. I think that sort of set him off on NOT liking disney that much- after all, it took me away from him for a semester. He drove down with me and flew back and came and visited at least once during the program and then again at the end to drive back with me. I also flew home at least twice, but it was a hard long 4 months in terms of long distance relationships!

my lovely costume for hollywood and vine!



But we made it through and my love for the mouse only grew stronger! Being behind the scenes did NOT ruin the magic for me, it only made it that much better. I knew all the hard work and magic that went in to make this place special and had been a part of that. It was so special. One of the best times of my life and I am so glad I did the program. I lived in the disney apartments, Vista Way, right off 535 and had 5 roommates in a 3 bedroom apartment. I still keep in touch with 4 of them, and this is almost 15 years later now! One still works at WDW at the Kodak pavilion in Epcot (outside figment ride). Another worked in Guest relations and disney weddings until just recently. Disney really finds a way to suck you in! I worked at Hollywood and Vine cafeteria while there- you don't get your choice of jobs on the college program and i had waitressing experience, so i got stuck in food service. Here i am, one class away from graduating with a business degree and I was bussing tables. LOL But I wouldn't have it any other way. The work was hard, but fun. I played cafeteria lady- since our restaurant just served breakfast and lunch, cafeteria style. no dinner, no characters back then. So i had early shifts and evenings free to enjoy the parks- just run over and catch Spectro one night etc. It was great!
Here is me with two of my roommates in 2007- almost 10 years after our program!


So then my love for disney was finalized!

We did a few trips with my immediate family then in my college years- in 1997 and 1998, we went and stayed off site. Still had a blast, but off site was more our budget then- afterall, my parents had 3 kids in college at once!

In 2000, we finally did a really nice family trip staying on site at Port Orleans Riverside and my family fell in love with that resort. It was my parents, both sisters, my cousin Nancy and her nephew. We had a great time! My DH (fiance) at the time didn't come along, just wasn't into it. This was when we first started to really get obsessed with all the planning that goes into trips! my mom and sisters and I went nuts planning this one! I'll have to scan in pics from these older trips!

Then I had a few visits here and there- on business. I worked in the defense industry and had a tradeshow in Orlando every spring at the Gaylord. So I would always try and get in at least one park day or at least DTD!! That was in 2003-2005.

in 2004, I also did a short little spring break trip with just my sister Wendy in spring 2004- just the two of us. That was a lot of fun!! here is Wendy and I in 2004, stayed at POFQ in April- we saw the Flower and Garden festival which was gorgeous! And also met up with my old roommate from the college program- Heather- the last pic is her at work at the Kodak area in Journey into Imagination! She still works there today- you might just see her!





In early December 2005, my immediately family went back to Port Orleans Riverside in May I believe it was. This time it was my parents, my sister Wendy, her husband, their 2.5 daughter and my sister Mandy. My DH once again stayed at home. Which was fine, I tended to have more fun with my family at WDW since he was a disney grump. Another great trip!!!




So in 2006, I talked DH into coming with me. After the 2005 trip, I realized I really wanted him to experience the magic again. So he agreed and just the two of us went in August 2006 for free dining at the Carribean Beach. It was great, just super hot!!! And wow, talk about a lot of food- that is when free appetizers were included too. He did enjoy the dining! He was sort of into the magic then and was starting to have fun!

California Grill!

DH HATES posing for pictures, so this shot is great- he actually had a little fun!


In 2006, i had another business trip to Orlando (yeah!) and this time the Animal Kingdom Lodge was actually on the list of hotels that our conference had discounted rates for- so yep, i booked it! DH came along and we spent about 2 days in the parks after the tradeshow. Plus my BF was there too (she worked with me) He LOVED the AKL. This was when our love for the deluxes began! He said if he ever came back to Disney, he would only stay in a deluxe!
Here's me and my 6'2 BF!


So during and after that 2006 trip is when we were desperately trying to conceive and going through a year of agonizing fertility treatments. It was right after this trip that I finally got pregnant through IVF. Our son was born Oct 30, 2007.

so it wasn't until May 2009 that we were able to go again. I had discovered the DIS boards back in 1999 (see my start date!), but just lurked. It was only in the last few years that I started posting and my sister Wendy turned me onto the podcast- so i started visiting the podcast board and listening to Pete and the team. Then the podcast cruise was announced and I thought it was going to be a fun time! We wanted to make it a girls only trip. But then my sisters couldn't go. So it ended up being me, mom, dad and my cousin Nancy. Nancy and I bunked up. The cruise was amazing- my first cruise ever, much less on disney. The podcast team was great and meeting friends I had chatted with on the disboards in person was so fun. But I did miss having DH and Pooh there. Plus my mom recently had brain surgery and was losing her vision, so a lot of the cruise was spent helping her get around. But we did get to cruise and also did the Keys to the Kingdom tour before our trip!
DIS martini tasting!


With some of my Dis Podcast friends on Castaway Cay!


Then Our most recent trip was last year- December 2009!! 14 of us at the Wilderness Lodge for 10 days. It was the trip of a lifetime and my parents treated us all, which was amazing!!




And so goes the history of my disney love and experience and trips.

DH totally surprised me by wanting to do the DVC tour on this last trip and now that we have bought, we will probably be going every year for the next 4-5 years while DS is little and still appreciates the magic. We might skip a year, it just depends. We know as he gets older, things might change and we might end up banking more points or renting them out. But for now, we are already planning for October 2011 too for DS's bday, MNSSHP and Food/Wine! Of course I also want to try for a little brother or sister perhaps later this year, so we would have the magic to share with another child hopefully too. Keep your fingers crossed- as the baby making isn't an easy thing (apparently) for us!

So that's our story. DH and i just celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary and 17 years of being together. Plus Pooh just turned 2.5. We look forward to many happy years of exploring the magic together. Plus, I love the fact that I know we will have future trips, and won't feel so rushed to get everything done. I do tend to be a bit commando!! no, not in the underwear department!!!
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MY TRIP REPORTS: NOV 2012 PTR OCT 2011 BLT TR DEC 2010 BLT TRSEPT 2010 DL TR DEC 2009 WL TR AUG 2006 TR
ME (Michelle) , DH, DS (3), Tink & Sassy



WDW College Program-Fall 96
,
84, 86-FTW, 93-FTW, 97, 98-OFFSITE, 00-POR, 03, 04, 05-GAYLORD, 04-POFQ, 05-POR, 06-CBR, 07-AKL, May 09-DIS Podcast Cruise, DEC 09-DAP/WL, Sept 10-DL, DEC 10 BLT, FEB 10 JOINED DVC! AUG 11 DLH, OCT 11 BLT, NOV 2012 BLT

Last edited by exwdwcm; 08-09-2010 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 05-06-2010, 11:38 AM   #15
Tinkermom76
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wow that is quite a trip history!

I am thinking about booking our first cruise for next year and I am so excited about it.

Can't wait to see where our trips match up
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