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Old 03-04-2010, 09:46 AM   #1
tyandskyesmom
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"I Can" and "I Will" Go To The World...UPDATED 10-9-10 WITH PICTURES!!..

***Day 1 page 9 post 125***




So, I have been reading other Disers’ Pre-Trip Reports for trips around the same time as us in April of 2010 initially to get some info since this is the first time we are going in April. We have been in mid-May for Star Wars Weekends once a few years ago but things have changed and the weather can change so quickly that I want to make sure we are prepared but not over prepared. We are used to going for at least ten nights and our last two trips with just me and the kids have been for fourteen and sixteen days…so I am feeling the crunch to fit a fun, relaxing trip where everyone gets to do when they want into seven night/eight days! But now, I have gotten the itch to do my own Trip Report again! In the past I have completed one Deluxe Dining Review, begun another but never finished (which I should still do!), and begun a Trip Report that was not finished…I seem to run out of time or something! And then that Disney “need” returns and I start reading other Trip Reports and want to do my own. So here we are!

Let’s get the specifics out of the way first…

WHEN : April 21 – 28, 2010
WHERE : Pop Century
PASSES : 8 day base passes
DINING : Quick Service Dining Plan (QSDP)
WHO : Me/ Sherry,Son/Tyler,Daughter/Skyler,
Mom/Laurel
HOW : Southwest Airlines out of Midway to Orlando

I hope you will come along and help me out along the way on our first April trip to The World...it makes it more fun that way...


Last edited by tyandskyesmom; 10-09-2010 at 10:26 PM. Reason: Title Change going from Pre-Trip to Trip Report
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Old 03-04-2010, 10:19 AM   #2
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Reason for the title...

Well, we have been anticipating the opening of the new Alice In Wonderland movie for what seems like EVER!

It took the kids a little while to grasp that it was not supposed to be Alice's trip to Wonderland that they knew...but when Alice is grown up.

So now the day is finally approaching and we have our tickets to a 6:45pm showing of Alice In Wonderland at the IMAX theater near our house for Tomorrow night!!!

So at 48 days out we are starting our journey tomorrow with a trip to the movies...it's not the Great Movie Ride but it will have to do!




Last edited by tyandskyesmom; 10-09-2010 at 10:25 PM.
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Old 03-04-2010, 02:51 PM   #3
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So, before Wonderland, where did this start?

Well, the last time the kids and I were in The World was in November 2008. We were jonesin' for some Mickey's house! My husband has been unemployed now for close to three years now and things have been tight. We have had to give up a lot of things we were used to...zoo memberships, museum memberships, eating out a lot, shopping just becasue, etc...so we were in need of some picking up too! Everytime Skye would see a Disney commercial she would pout out her lip and said "I wanna go to Mickey's house" or "I wish we lived at Mickey's house"...things like that. It has been a very stressful time for us.

I am constantly re-working and re-arranging and planning imaginary trips...various times of the year, various hotels, with the various dining plans and without. Well, back on October 5, 2009 I received my first and only PIN offer via e-mail for 20% off a vacation package. So I started asking questions to my online travel agent and getting prices. I knew Lou would not be able to go, that would cost too much, but I was contemplating driving again becasue the airline tickets were so high. And while I liked the idea of the driving adventure with me and the kids, I did not think it wise to set out with just the 3 of us. So I asked my parents if they wanted to come too. At first both said yes. So I priced out everything and though about it, and thought about it, and thought about it. I really wanted to go. But I knew I really did not have the money right now. And I knew that if we got money somehow, it should be saved or be put towards something else we needed. But I really wanted to go!

So I tried to fugure out how to justify it. We were coming in on Christmas and Tyler's Birthday (December 29th) and usually those are pretty big, no huge, deals at our house. And Santa normally goes overboard. I think Tyler is on to the whole thing but Skye still believes...or at least wants to believe. I knew this year Santa was going to be a bit more tight with his gift giving...he had to be...becasue I did not know where he would get the money to not be. And then it hit me! TAX RETURNS!!!! We woudl normally get the return in February and it would be enough to pay for vacation and still do some of the things we needed it to. And back to Santa...that could be the kid's main Christmas present! This way, I coudl have my parents put the down payment on their credit card and by the time the 45 day mark came to pay if off, I'd have my taxes back and be able to pay them to put the rest on their card. BINGO!

And then Dad decided he did not want to go. I don't know why. He did not give a reason. But Mom would not miss an invite to go to The World with her Grandchildren...I'd like to think her daughter too but I am not so sure...

So we booked for two adults, one junior, and one child for five nights from April 22 through April 27 at Pop Century with six day base passes. The initial cost was $1264.56.

Then I kept checking Southwest Airlines web site for prices...becasue we'd much prefer to fly, especially since it was just me and Mom and the kids. So at the end of October they opened up the schedule to include our dates and had fares at $94.00 each way...so we decided to take it and hope they would still come down. Oh, and we decided to add two days onto each end of the trip...so we were now at seven nights from April 21 through April 28 at Pop Century with six day base passes for $1454.40 and we had airline tickets! That really made it real...the Disney reservation could be cancelled, the airline tickets could not!

WE ARE GOING TO DISNEY WORLD!!!!!...but the kids don't know...this is the longest I have ever kept a secret like this from them!!!
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Old 03-04-2010, 02:57 PM   #4
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I am so glad you started a PTR Sherry!! Awesome that it's a surprise trip as well!!! Those are great airfares too out of Midway and it's nice on Southwest because bags fly for free!!

You will have to review the new Alice movie after you see it!! It looks really good!! Can't wait to read more!!
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Old 03-05-2010, 01:31 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory's Gal View Post
I am so glad you started a PTR Sherry!! Awesome that it's a surprise trip as well!!! Those are great airfares too out of Midway and it's nice on Southwest because bags fly for free!!

You will have to review the new Alice movie after you see it!! It looks really good!! Can't wait to read more!!
Sure will...I am sure we'll have lots to say!

Thanx for coming over...I hate when it seems like I'm talking to myself!
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Old 03-05-2010, 02:04 PM   #6
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more on how this grew...

So, we had a place to stay and tickets and a plane ride back and forth...but I was really worried about not having hoppers.

Normally we have them or an annual pass in the good 'ol days! We don't necessarily use them a lot (even on our longer trips) but it was nice to know we could. And we would usually get one or two days at the end of the trip where we wanted to hop around to our favorites or things we missed earlier. But you cannot only get hopping on one or two of your days...and it would increast cost by $208.00 (plus tax) and that is money we could use for something else! So I had to decide if it would be worth it to us for this trip????

So I got down to business and started checking out park hours and pass prices and predicted crowd levels and all things that would weigh in on the "worth it" factor.

So with a six day pass I had us doing two days at Magic Kingdom, two days at Epcot, one day at Disney Hollywood Studios (why do I always have to stop my self and really think about what the name of that park is???), and one day at Animal Kingdom with arrival day and departure day to just hang out and relax at POP or Downtown Disney or whatever.

A little more background information on us here...we recently discovered the usefulness of Extra Morning Hours and getting there early...and we have always loved the Extra Evening Hours. So we usually try to plan with those in mind...which is apparently what a lot of other Disers try to avoid.

Some of the issues I had were with Disney Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. We, as a family, would be hard pressed to answer the question of what our favorite park is...however, I think collectively we would rank Disney Hollywood Studios in fourth...and that's not to say we don't like it...quite the opposite, we it...but if we had to rank...

Anyway, the reasons for being ranked fourth probably revolve a lot around Skye always being too little for the big rides and Tyler being too chicken! So even though we could spend multiple days there, we don't generally need to...but now, with Toy Story Mania (which my parents did not get to ride becasue of lines when they went last February) and Skye now being 41.5 inches tall, some more possibilities open up!

So, if we only have one day at Disney Hollywood Studios, that most likely means only two rides on Toy Story Mania (one as stand-by at opening and one with the fast passes we will get before riding stand-by). And Fantasmic is our favorite, favorite, favorite night time show so we need to allow time to line up for that too...

But I cannot cut anything else out?!?!?!?

And then on to Animal Kingdom...well, the other three parks, would be tied for first...ya, good system right? And Animal Kingdom is the park we always feel like we have not spent enough time in...it does not matter how many times we go...and again, that is without waiting for Expedition Everest becasue Tyler is too chicken! Although, and I'm not counting my chickens before they hatch and we have a lot of chickens in our house becasue Skye is a chicken fiend!!!!....Tyler watched a video of Everest on line and his response was "that's it, where's the big hill?"...we have been telling him that he would love it if he went on it (his favorite is Big Thunder Mountain Railroad) and that is looks bigger from the outside than it really feels like when you're on it...we told him it is a lot like an overgrown Big Thunder Mountain...so, maybe this time around I can get him on it...cross your fingers for me please!!!

So back to decisions...so one day at each of these is grating on me.

I looked over park schedules. Hours are not really at their longest at the end of April. And yet, it should be warmer than we are used to so the kids will probably want to swim...oh, and I should mention that we are not take-a-break-in-the-middle-of-the-day kind of people...so that would take place early morning or late evening.

So i'm looking, and looking, and re-looking. And thinking, and thinking, and re-thinking. And this is what I came up with...

Hoppers would be a waste of money this time around.

BUT

For about $25.00 more or something crazy like that I could add two more days to our passes!

So that's how we got to eight day base passes.

You know, I figure, if worse comes to worse and for whatever reason we decide we NEED to hop, we can always add it there.

Last edited by tyandskyesmom; 03-25-2010 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 03-05-2010, 02:21 PM   #7
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A minor snag...

So I was looking at the calendar this morning and noting all of Skye's new gymnastics and cheer-tumble classes on it. She is switching her days from Thursday to Wednesdays. When I booked the trip, she was not on Wednesdays...so she would only miss one class. But now, since we are leaving on Wednesday and coming home on Wednesday, she will miss two!

I know, small potatoes but I pay for those classes and for her to be the best she can be, she needs to be there to practice....

Another sinde note on us as a family...we don't do sports just becase they are cute...if you're playing, you're playing to play the best you can...we don't like participation trophies...we think you should earn it...and that is not coming from a parent with two super-duper athletic, driven kids...Tyler is very laid back about ambition...everything in school has always been easy for him, in sports in our area (ie. baseball and football) if you show up you play...so Tyler has not had to have the drive to be good he just had to show up...and he is not the best (he holds his own) and he is not the worst...so he'd be one of those kids right in the middle who probably would not get a trophy. Skye, on the other hand, has been dancing and doing gymnastics since she was 3, she could not wait to be able to be a cheerleader! She was recently asked to join a competition team by her dance coordinator for next year...she was the flier in her first year as a cheerleader doing stunts that out other level coaches did not think possible and her team took second in State Competition (it is kindergarten, first, and second graders)...she has recently learned to do a flip-flop almost by herself (she did two by herself on Sunday) even though she cannot seem to master a backward roll!!! The girl has more ambition in her little finger than Tyler has in his whole body...she'd probably be getting the trophies. A funny side note...this is how I know she is paying attention...after her dance coordinator told her about the competition team we got in the car to go home and she said to me "See Mom, sometimes hard work pays off!"

So anyway, one day off from gymnastics is one thing, two could be a problem, not one that would change our plans but enough of one that I had to look into it!

So I e-mailed the coordinator of the program asking about make-up classes. She just got back to me and said they don't usually allow make-ups and it will depend on the number of kids on the other classes at her level on other days but she will see what she can do when it gets closer to the time.

So that was a vacation win for us...sometimes the little things are what make you so happy!
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Old 03-05-2010, 06:35 PM   #8
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And we're off...

...to Wonderland...


Oh, sorry, that's usually Neverland isn't it....well anyway, we're off!

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Old 03-09-2010, 11:19 AM   #9
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Wonderland

Alice In Wonderland was awesome! I am so glad we decided to see it at the IMAX! It is definatelty something we will buy on Blue Ray for the PS3...our whole family loved it!

Even the previews were great. One for Toy Story and Shrek were the best...I could hear Skye two seats over when Shrek came on say, "AWE-SOME!"...she loves her some Shrek!


I'll be back soon with more trip info...
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:48 AM   #10
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Lots to do...

Well, let's ge tthis out of the way first...

40 more days!!!!!

Ok, so anyway...

I know this has been kinda boring so far...no realy details, no real fun...but before I can get to the fun there are a lot of hurdles to get over and through...

First and most important is Skye turns 6 on April 7th which means a birthday party to plan...which entails at this moment, making the invites. She finally (and believe me when I say finally) decided on what to do...who'da thought a 6 year old's birthday could be so complicated??? We decided on having it at my mom's house (our's is too small) and doing a big family and friends affair. She went with hot pink and black and is going to go with a girly pirate theme. That's about as far as we have gotten so far...

Then the next most time and money consuming out-of-the-ordinary thing is Easter being the Sunday before her birthday....needless to say, we have no Easter/spring decorations up yet and nothing has been purchased for the Easter baskets.

Then is the kid's activities...Tyler has Arena Football practice on Tuesdays and Saturdays...and games on Saturday or Sunday every week at varying times (by the way, they won their first game 41-13!!!!) and then baseball practice on Sundays for an hour. He also has a Science Fair he wants to do (no credit for class or anything, just something they can do) that is actually taking place while we are in The World so it would have to be done before that so he could bring it in. Skye has Ballet and Tap on Saturday mornings and Gymnastics on Thursdays for about three and a half hours...which will change to Wednesdays on her birthday.

And then there is Parent-Teacher conferences coming up...

But I took that day off from work to go so we will use the rest of that day for PACK!!!!! At least most of Ty and Skyes's things...cause believe me, we do not need summer clothes around here yet!

And then we need to actually plan the birthday party!

And in all of that, I need to find time to take the old pictures off on all the strips so that I can take new ones. I also need to get some pictures on here...I enjoy reports with pictures much better than without....maybe that's why I have no readers?!?!?!

But the great thing about all of this is that is will being us closer to Mickey's House faster!!!

I'm going to try to get that picture thing going this weekend...because I plan to have the invites done by then too (wish me luck!)....
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:54 PM   #11
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Magical Express

Our Magical Express package came today...yay!...Our Magical Express package came today...yes!..Our Magical Express package came today...yahoo!!!!



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Old 03-22-2010, 08:57 AM   #12
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30 more days!

We have hit the
30 day mark!!!

I have a lot to tell you and a lot of pictures to catch up on but I just cannot find the time!!!

I will though...working on that picture thing pronto!!!

30 more days!!!

30 more days!!!

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Old 03-24-2010, 02:12 PM   #13
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28 more days!!!!

I know, I know...I promised pictures...believe me they are in the works...we have had some computer issues at home and I think we're almost ready...so maybe tonight.

I guess the computer issues have not really been my only problem though...we have just been downright busy!

Last night Tyler had Arena Football practice and Skye and I went to a free advanced showing of "How To Train Your Dragon"...it was cute...no "Alice" or "Twilight" but not everything can be!

We did get Skye almost completely packed and Tyler about half way packed. We are good on toiletries I think, they just need to be packed. I still need to pack...but a lot of what I am bringing I am wearing.

We have pictures of countdown calendars (for the last three months...the kids love 'em!) and pins (we got our package from off of e-bay, you'd have thought it was Christmas all over again in my house!) and lots of other things...heck, we have not even had formal introductions yet!!!! Or our touring and eating plans!!!!!

I better get on the ball hu!?!?!?!?!?!
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Old 03-24-2010, 04:37 PM   #14
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Great updates Sherry! I am still reading along!! It's tough being busy but it will for sure help get that trip here faster!!! My daughter Helen's birthday is on April 9th so we are doing a little bit of planning too!! Awesome that your Magical Express stuff came!!! That means that mine stuff will be coming soon!!! Glad you liked Alice in Wonderland, I am hoping to see it with my sister-in-law who is a MAJOR Johnny Depp and Tim Burton fan right after Easter!! Looking forward to some pics too!!!!
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Old 03-24-2010, 06:36 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory's Gal View Post
Great updates Sherry! I am still reading along!! It's tough being busy but it will for sure help get that trip here faster!!! My daughter Helen's birthday is on April 9th so we are doing a little bit of planning too!! Awesome that your Magical Express stuff came!!! That means that mine stuff will be coming soon!!! Glad you liked Alice in Wonderland, I am hoping to see it with my sister-in-law who is a MAJOR Johnny Depp and Tim Burton fan right after Easter!! Looking forward to some pics too!!!!
I tink you're the only one! Skye's actual birtday is he 7th but the party is the 10th...I think we're pretty well planned out now...

I cannot wait until the other reservation info comes...then you know it is really real!

Well, let me get on with this...
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