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Old 10-13-2010, 09:15 PM   #1
kissesbykim
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Tylers MAW at GKTW!!!

First off I have to say that the people who run or work at GKTW are very special. Never in a million years would I have believed some place existed like this! Our little family needed this trip so badly. So, a huge thanks to GKTW, MAW, and all the supporters involved.

That being said, we just returned last night from the trip of a lifetime. Pixie dust was scattered around every corner. Tyler had the time of his life! All day long we were preparing for our red eye from California to Florida and I was stressing out! Our little AJ is almost 2 and he does it well! Thankfully, our flight was uneventful and both kids slept a majority of time.



So, we're here in Orlando trying to navigate the airport when we find our greeter from GKTW, Lynn. She helps us with all of our bags and gets us to our rental car. As soon as we leave the airport, the excitement finally kicks in and we couldn't get to the village quick enough! Orlando and Kissimmee is so full of magic! Every where we turned there are signs of Disney kisses! So we arrive at GKTW and check in. We were all in shock..the village was more fantastic than the pictures we've been looking at for months! On our way to the villa, we get to see all the whimsical buildings. We are in villa 296.



The living room is nice and large with a little kitchen. There is a long hallway with a washer and dryer, bathroom, master bedroom and the kids bedroom. The kids bath is amazing with a handicap shower and jacuzzi tub.






We were all starving but Tyler wanted to visit Amberville first and ride the train so we figured that since this was his big trip, he was the boss....haha!




Finally, it was time for lunch so we enjoyed chicken pot pies and mac n cheese. All the food for lunch was made by Boston Market and it was delicious! Of course after breakfast we took advantage of the ice cream palace..a place we visited a lot!

We were all in need of a long nap...as much as we'd like to explore a little more, it just wasn't in the card for us. Both the kids were maniacs and exhausted so it was making our first day a little rough. Reluctantly, we headed back to the villa for a short nap...a short 4 hour nap..oops! We didn't wake up in time for dinner that first night but that was okay. We just ordered pizza to our villa and enjoyed a restful evening. All in all, it was a perfect first day to Tyler's Make a Wish vacation!
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:05 PM   #2
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Great start to your TR. Can't wait to hear more.
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Old 10-14-2010, 08:12 PM   #3
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Day 2, Mickey, Minnie and Universal!

We set our alarm early to make sure we got to meet Mickey and Minnie at the village and enjoy a nice breakfast. On our walk out to the character greeting, we ran into Goofy and Pluto! At first AJ was a little hesitant but he warmed up quickly. Tyler loved them all! We waited in line for Mickey for just a couple of minutes and when we got on stage with them, the boys were so excited! Tyler had a long conversation with Mickey while AJ kissed on Minnie for awhile.




After a delicious breakfast of eggs, bacon and waffles, we headed out to our first park, Islands of Adventure. We had perfered parking through GKTW but, wow, I can't believe how far away the park is from the parking garage! Tyler has problems with his legs getting sore and ended up riding in the stroller for part of it. We head straight to Suessville to ride the "High in the sky train". It was so much fun and so adorable! My mom was with us and she's a librarian...she went batty when she saw Suessville. We made our way to Harry Potter...that's when Tyler started throwing fits...lots of fits. He gets so anxious about rides. Although he wanted to ride, he was too nervous and all he wanted to do was get away from us. The land was very crowded and Tyler wasn't having any fun at all so we left as quickly as we came but I was able to snap a couple of pics on the way out.



We were tired of Ty throwing fits about EVERY single ride so we did something drastic. We made him go on Jurassic Park. Say what you will about me but I knew that once he conquered the fear of the scary rides, he would be much better and he wouldn't be having such a terrible time. So...kicking and screaming, we put him on the ride between us. We quickly calmed down..but was nervous about the dinosaurs "eating" him or about getting soaking wet. Well, guess what...he survived the ride...just a little wet and he hadn't been someones dinner. I was proud of him and he was glad he went on it. He actually enjoyed himself and thanked Jason and I for getting him on the ride! After that, he went on just about everything he could fit on. The few fits he threw after that were about "stuff" he wanted...at one point, he was throwing a fit and Grandma went to get him (he's a runner when he gets upset...it's a sensory thing) and a man sitting on a park bench made a comment "wow...he's just going to get away with that"...Grandma didn't explain our situation (because it's none of his business) but she did say that maybe he should keep his comments to himself because he doesn't know everything the family has been going through this year. I wish people wouldn't make judgments about others. We do our best as parents and having a kid with multiple issues is a challenge.

We finished what we wanted to do at IOA and made our way to US. We did Twister (which Ty hated) and Jaws (which he loved). We were really tired so we headed back to the Village for Christmas Thursday. We rode the train again, got presents from Santa and ate our fantastic Christmas dinner. Unfortunately, we didn't make it in time for a dip in the pool but we did enjoy some more ice cream. Then it was off to bed.


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Old 10-16-2010, 07:01 AM   #4
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Great Start! I am LOVING all the pictures. Thanks for sharing with us!

Lynn
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Old 10-16-2010, 11:15 PM   #5
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Day 3, Character breakfast, Epcot and Disney Studios

So, adjusting the family to the time change from Cali to Florida was HARD! My kids are pretty good sleepers...and so are we! We had a ADR at 1900 Park Fare for breakfast at 9:30 so I set the alarm clock to go off at 6:30 knowing that I need a little while to wake up and have my morning coffee. Plus, Grandma takes a little while to curl her hair I was unaware that the snooze on the alarm didn't work...it went off at 6:30 but didn't go off again. Hitting the snooze is a bad habit of mine. Woops! We didn't get up until 8. Ugh. We ran crazy, trying to get ourselves exceptable looking for the parks. We were out of the house by 9 and walked up to the counter at breakfast at 9:30 sharp. Of course we had to wait about 20 minutes for our table but it gave us time to drool over the Grand Floridian hotel...it was breath taking!



I wish I had cool antiques in my house like this!


Our character breakfast was good. The food was great (espicially the strawberry soup!). I had heard how loud the restaurant was on DIS...wow! It didn't bother us at all but holy moly! The only down side was we were stuck in the corner. But the rest was great! We loved the Mad Hatter and the kids loved Pooh and Tigger.



Mary Poppins is so beautiful!


So we were off to Epcot. I don't know how this happened but I didn't really take very many pics of this park. Last time to DW, my family had a miserable time at Epcot (for personal reasons...the park was great). We rode on Nemo, Test Track and Spaceship Earth. I don't think I will ever ride Spaceship Earth again. I felt like I was never going to be able to get out of there!! We were feeling pretty icky afterwards and it felt really hot there. I don't know if it's the lack of trees or all the concrete but the kids were miserable. So, if we would have been kid free we would have toured the World Showcase but the kids were restless so we decided to leave and visit Disney Studios. It seemed so much cooler there! We enjoyed the The Great Movie Ride (Tyler's favorite!) and Toy Story Mania. Tyler HAD to go to the Indiana Jones show (one of the major things he wanted to do at DW) and when we arrived, they saw his GKTW button and put us in the VIP section. The CM whispered to Jason "stay after the show and we will have a surprise for your son!" We did. Then we got a long meet and greet (about 20 minutes) with Indiana Jones! Tyler was bashful and wouldn't let us take a picture but we learned that Indie stayed at GKTW a few years ago with his daughter! We just chatted away! It was so fun and he was really nice!



Tyler during the Indiana Jones show




We stayed until the park closed then made our way back to the village. Upon arrival, we remembered that we missed the Pirates and Princesses party We ordered Boston Market for dinner and went to bed to get ready for the Magic Kingdom in the morning.
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:29 AM   #6
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Loving your TR. Your breakfast at The Grand Floridian looks fun. I had to kind of chuckle when you talked about your family adjusting to East coast time. We are coming from the Pacific NW and I am pretty sure it will be a bit of an adjustment for my crew too (myself included because I am not a morning person). I am excited to hear more about your trip.
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Bibbiti Bobbiti Make A Wish Helps our Boo Have Her Princess Wishes Come True!!!
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Old 10-17-2010, 10:15 PM   #7
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Day 4, Magic Kingdom, Pirate son and some family time

Okay...we woke up a little late again this morning. We still hadn't figured out that the snooze was busted on the clock. But we weren't crazy late like the prior morning. A major part of Tyler's wish was the Pirates League. Specifically, his wish was "I want to go to Disneyworld, I want to be Jack Sparrow's skeleton". MAW had made appointments for Tyler and I to be painted up as pirates at 9:30am and gave us a gift card to pay for it. So...now even with the stellar parking that the GKTW button gets you, it takes A LONG TIME to travel from the parking lot to MK. We got onto the ferry at 9:00...yeah. I was sweating bullets. This was such a huge part of Ty's vacation and he would have been crushed if he had missed it. Anyways, we left DM, DH and AJ with the stroller and bags and literally ran to the Pirates League. Again, we made is with only 2 minutes to spare. I decided that I wasn't going to participate so Tyler to use all the money MAW gave us on himself. He got all sorts of stuff!!! He looked awesome too!





All day long everyone looked at Ty. He loves being the center of attention. Lots of ooohhh's and aaaahhhh's and "look at the scary pirate"! At home, he has a large collection of dress up clothes and it's hard to even go to the grocery store with him dressed normal. I believe that this day at MK was the best day of his life.

We met up with family later on that day which is nice because we don't get to see our Florida family much. We rode on Big Thunder Mountain, Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean and everything else under the sun! Ty even went on Space Mountain willingly! He's been on it before at DL and was terrified but with all the magic happening, it was his idea to ride!



By the end of the day, Tyler's makeup was literally running off his face....


We got to enjoy the light parade..


and at 12:15pm the kiddo's were completely exhausted!!


This was a very long day for us and our feet were hammered. We made the decision to sleep in the next morning and do a air boat ride in the afternoon. More to come soon.....
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Old 10-18-2010, 09:59 AM   #8
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Sounds like this has been a great trip so far! Tyler looked so good in his pirate makeover! Glad he got to do it!
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Old 10-19-2010, 08:25 AM   #9
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Loving your trip report!!!!!

I am so glad you guys said something to the rude guy at Universal.

Isn't GKTW amazing!! I have such a hard time explaining that place to people that have never been there.

I had no idea that Indiana Jones had been to GKTW. How cool is that?!

GREAT TR!

Do you mind if I put a link to it in the Wish Trippers thread?
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:24 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maroo View Post
Loving your trip report!!!!!

I am so glad you guys said something to the rude guy at Universal.

Isn't GKTW amazing!! I have such a hard time explaining that place to people that have never been there.

I had no idea that Indiana Jones had been to GKTW. How cool is that?!

GREAT TR!

Do you mind if I put a link to it in the Wish Trippers thread?
I hate it when people make comments when they don't know he whole story..drives me nuts! It took everything I had not to go and smack him! My husband too...we didn't want to ruin the vacation so we just let it go.

GKTW is....unexplainable. A family we met there was saying the same thing. How is it possible to explain a place like this? There are no words for how fantastic it is!
It would be fantastic if you put the link up! Thank you!!!
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Old 10-26-2010, 06:29 AM   #11
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Hope everyone is doing well! I can't wait to read more!

Lynn
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Old 11-05-2010, 01:16 PM   #12
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Loving your TR and all the pics!!!
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PTR- http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2450895

TR- Hayley's Magical Make A Wish Trip-
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....7#post39032507
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Old 11-16-2010, 05:23 PM   #13
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I swear I haven't forgotten about my trip report! Life has been crazy around here...we have been working non stop trying to figure out Tyler's stomach aches...and we've been to the doctors a lot! So, hopefully in a few days I can get this finished! Thanks!
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Old 11-17-2010, 05:31 PM   #14
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I'll be waiting--hope everything settles down for you soon!!
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Old 11-17-2010, 05:41 PM   #15
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Reading this and seeing the pictures is making me so excited for my daughter's trip!

Can't wait to read more!
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