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Old 11-11-2010, 11:35 AM   #1
ChildAtHeart82
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Our Daughter's Second Disney Trip Will Be Before Her First Birthday!?! - Mar 2011 PTR

Hi, everyone! I just booked our March 2011 trip yesterday and I need to share my excitement! In a the course of a few days, I went from "Wouldn't it be great if we could go to Disney again soon?" to "Let's see if we can afford it," to "We're going to Disney in March!"

The dates for our trip are 1-7 March and we'll be staying at Port Orleans French Quarter. This will be our second time at French Quarter. We're staying there for our quickly approaching trip in December. The link for that PTR is here.

I really don't know how I'm going to stretch this PTR out over 3 months. I think nearly all the planning is done, though I've said that before and more things to plan always seem to show up. That could just be my Disney planning addiction, though. I'll probably post a little later today with the cast of our trip.

ETA: I'm bored and I decided it was time to add a table of contents.

The Cast
The Planning Process and Dreams of Disney
How This Trip Came to Be
And It's Official (as it can be)
One Step Closer...
ADR List
Quick Update
Big Picture Plan
Magic Kingdom To-Do List
Mickey Mail and Epcot To-Do List
Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom To-Do Lists
Surprise Reveal and The Other Parks

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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)

Last edited by ChildAtHeart82; 02-20-2011 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 11-11-2010, 08:09 PM   #2
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The Cast

...
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)

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Old 11-11-2010, 09:38 PM   #3
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Hi! Your title caught my eye, since we are taking our baby to Disney for his second trip before his first birthday, too. Always nice to meet people who may be as crazy as we are.

Your little girl is beautiful! I am sure she will have a great time. Going now to check out your Dec. PTR.
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Old 11-12-2010, 11:41 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by PirateKate View Post
Hi! Your title caught my eye, since we are taking our baby to Disney for his second trip before his first birthday, too. Always nice to meet people who may be as crazy as we are.

Your little girl is beautiful! I am sure she will have a great time. Going now to check out your Dec. PTR.
Thank you! It's defnitely nice to know we're not the only crazy ones. We were planning our December trip before our daughter was even born.

Headed over to your PTR now!
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March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 11-17-2010, 10:35 PM   #5
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The Planning Process and Dreams of Disney

I'm sitting at work tonight all by myself. I'm here with nothing to do for another four hours. I figured this was a great chance to update my PTR!

As I mentioned before, most of the planning is already done for this trip. In fact, I did most of the planning in over two nights. Part of this is because our park touring style involves just figuring out which park we want to go to on which day. That means I don't have to be too detailed in the day to day plans. The other reason is that I always have a list of dream Disney trips that I would like to take. My daydreams often include planning for our next Disney trip, whenever that may be. If I were admitting that anywhere else, I think I'd be called crazy or obsessed. On these boards, I think that helps me fit in.

My list currently includes:

1.) The Eating Trip: We overindulge on every Disney trip, but this trip is one with a focus on trying several new restaurants and enjoying Disney food to the fullest. Since we usually only go once every couple of years, our focus has always been on the parks and seeing as much as we can (while still having fun) in the short time we have. The Eating Trip would involve seeing our favorites at the parks and then heading off to our next ADR or CS adventure.

2.) The Two Week Trip: The title almost says it all. I've always wanted to spend two whole weeks at Disney. We could tour each park at an even more relaxed pace than we already do. Also, we could take time to enjoy a lot of the non-park entertainment, like the luau, Hoop De Doo Revue, Cirque du Soleil, a fireworks cruise, and so on. Like everyone else, I've got a long list of things I've never done at Disney and there's probably more that I don't even know I haven't done. We couldn't do it all in two weeks, but we could do some.

3.) The Deluxe/Concierge Club Trip: One of these days, we'll stay concierge level at a deluxe resort, at least I hope we will. I stayed at the Contemporary when I was a kid and I have fond memories of that. Since then, we've stayed at values and we'll stay at our first moderate in December. So far, it's never fit into our budget. If we only get to stay at a deluxe once, I think we'd choose the Grand Floridian. Of course, since these are my dreams, I'd like to eventually stay at Beach Club and Animal Kingdom too. We only need to do concierge once but I would like to stay at the others.

Future trips will most likely involve parts of each of these ideas as we look to try new and exciting things at Disney. This trip (drum roll, please) is The Eating Trip, Part 1. It's Part 1 because there's no way we could enjoy every Disney dining option in one trip. Someday there will be a Part 2. Ahhhhh

Next, a quick and hopefully much shorter note on how this trip came to be. I'm sorry this is so long! I'm bored and I needed an outlet.
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 11-17-2010, 11:11 PM   #6
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How This Trip Came to Be

So there I was, sitting in the waiting room, watching Lucy, while DW had a physical therapy appointment. She recently broke her ankle and is now going through physical therapy for that. As I'm sitting there, I start daydreaming about Disney plans. I think how nice it would be to take advantage of free dining again since it's been extended for such a long time. I start thinking about when a good time to go would be.

I'm in the Air Force and deploying next summer so it would need to be before then. I can't take vacation in January and April. That leaves February or March. Okay, what fun Disney things go on during that time? The Flower and Garden Festival!! We've never been to that and DW would love it. When does that start? Beginning of March. I get on my phone and check crowd levels and the first week of March looks like a pretty good time to go. Here's where my Disney planning obsession begins to gain momentum. I pull out a sheet of paper and begin figuring out which parks to go to on which days and then I start thinking about dining. If we're getting free regular dining, why not upgrade to Deluxe and try a bunch of restaurants? I then figure out a list of restaurants we'd like to try and come up with a rough idea of which days we would go where. Oh no! We're definitely within the 180 day window for a March trip. With free dining offered, will be able to get any of our desired ADR's? I'll have to check when we get home because DW's appointment is almost over. Lastly, I decide that this would make a great birthday surprise for DW. That's right. She doesn't know we're going again in March. I haven't decided when I'm going to tell her, but hopefully I can keep the secret until her birthday, which is at the end of February.

We go home and I go to sneakily check ADR availability. I have to ask a DW a few questions to narrow down our list of restaurant choices. She asks me what I'm planning. I give her a pretty shaky story about planning a Disney trip for after I get back from the deployment. She believed it! Now, the moment of truth. I check our first ADR time and date. It's open! I check the next one. It's there too! Every time from my rough plan was available! We can't get a Le Cellier dinner, but I wasn't really expecting that. We did get a lunch ADR, though.

The next day I woke up and had to deal with the reality of trying to plan another Disney trip. Can we really afford to go? I check plane ticket prices and combine that with the Disney package quotes I'd looked up the night before. We'd have to tighten up on our budget a little bit, but we could afford to go on this trip. I let my calm, reasonable side have control for a little while to make sure this was a smart idea, and then I booked our package!

Of course, I have until 45 days out to cancel our trip, but the longer I go without canceling, the more real the trip becomes. Writing a PTR helps solidify that I'll be going too. Still, until I buy plane tickets, which will probably be around the end of December, I might still back out. I probably won't, though.

I realize this was not the short update I promised. I got carried away. Thanks for reading!
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 11-21-2010, 11:31 AM   #7
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I'm here! I'm here! AHH, I am so excited that you are surprising DW! This is fantastic! I can't wait to read all about it!

I am glad that you are taking the opportunity to go before you deploy. DH finishes up Special Forces training next summer, so we are hoping to maybe go back before he gets sent to his new unit. Fingers crossed!

I love reading your PTRs, and I love seeing pics of Lucy!
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Old 11-23-2010, 11:09 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by therussells08 View Post
I'm here! I'm here! AHH, I am so excited that you are surprising DW! This is fantastic! I can't wait to read all about it!

I am glad that you are taking the opportunity to go before you deploy. DH finishes up Special Forces training next summer, so we are hoping to maybe go back before he gets sent to his new unit. Fingers crossed!

I love reading your PTRs, and I love seeing pics of Lucy!
Welcome!! Thanks for reading. I hope you guys get to go again!
__________________
Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 11-24-2010, 05:55 AM   #9
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Love your report! We've taken our kids as many times as we have been able to -- this trip will be #7 for our 12 yr old. Love the different theme trips you think about and they way you figure you can cancel (but won't)...that's how I talk my DH into booking each time Good luck to your DW with her ankle -- I did that 2 yrs ago...not fun

Looking forward to more updates. We're surprising our kids this weekend with a December trip. Cant wait!!
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* 8/14 POP Our Big Summer Blowout Celebration Trip! 1 Year Cancer Free & DD's 14th * 12/10 POR Our Very Merry SuRpRiSe ChRiStMaS TRiP * 1/08 Grand Gathering POR - Dad's 70th & DS's 6th - Pirate & Princess Party! * 11/05 POR - Jersey Week - Food & Wine Festival * 12/04 POP & ASMo - MVMCP * 10/02 POFQ & ASMo - DD's 4th Birthday & MNSSHP * 5/01 AKL & POR - Flower & Garden Festival * 5/00 ASMu - Flower & Garden Festival * Childhood trips... 7/83 Disneyland * 2/79 POL * 12/75 First Trip - age 6 (off site) Thanks Gramma for the best Christmas gift ever! I'll always remember the magic...*
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Old 11-29-2010, 03:10 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by SnoWhiteRabbit View Post
Love your report! We've taken our kids as many times as we have been able to -- this trip will be #7 for our 12 yr old. Love the different theme trips you think about and they way you figure you can cancel (but won't)...that's how I talk my DH into booking each time Good luck to your DW with her ankle -- I did that 2 yrs ago...not fun

Looking forward to more updates. We're surprising our kids this weekend with a December trip. Cant wait!!
Welcome! I hope the surprise went well. DW's ankle is doing okay. She walked around a lot this weekend and it was bothering her a little by the end. We're thinking (and hoping) that she'll be 100% by our December trip.
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 12-03-2010, 02:18 PM   #11
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Sounds like a great trip! I always have several Disney dream trips I think about as well. Guess it really does make us fit in here! Very brave of you to try the eating trip with Lucy along. She must be a very good baby.
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Old 12-06-2010, 04:53 PM   #12
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Sounds like a great trip! I always have several Disney dream trips I think about as well. Guess it really does make us fit in here! Very brave of you to try the eating trip with Lucy along. She must be a very good baby.
Thanks! So far, Lucy behaves very well when we eat out. She is just now sitting up enough that we don't have to bring the baby carrier in and use a baby sling. She can just sit in a high chair and she seems to enjoy that more anyway! We have a few sit-down meals for our trip in December and hopefully those go well. If not, I don't think we'll be able to make the current plan for this trip work, which would be sad. I think Lucy will do well, though.
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 12-06-2010, 05:04 PM   #13
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And It's Official (as it can be)

I have a few small updates. I'm hoping to find time to write a longer update later this week. Last week, I finally decided to buy plane tickets for this trip. Prices were starting to slowly increase and so I decided it was time. Looking at prices and flight times, though I was faced with a decision. The original plan was to fly in as early as possible, which from South Dakota results in a 2:00 PM arrival, and then fly out as late as possible. To do that, would have cost us an extra $200 a ticket. The cheaper tickets got us in late enough that we wouldn't be able to do an ADR on our first night and left really early in the morning. So, with the cheaper tickets, we would lose two ADR opportunities and a day's worth of Disney time (half a day on each end). Unless...

We added some time to our trip! I ended up adding two days to our trip! Our dates are now 1-9 March. I had already been looking for a reason to add a little more time and the plane tickets did it. With the money saved on airfare, we're only paying less than $200 more for an extra two nights.

Now, that we have plane tickets, we're committed to the trip, which I pretty much was before. As long as I can get time off, which is fairly likely, we'll go to Disney in March!!
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 12-18-2010, 10:32 PM   #14
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Well, I had intended to write one more update with our planned ADR's before we left on our December trip, but it's now the night before we leave and we still have packing to do. I will try and update soon after we get back. I hope you all have a merry Christmas!
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:46 AM   #15
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One Step Closer...

Well, I made our final payment last night! Now, I've just got to get the time off. I've put in all the requests and I plan to keep politely mentioning it to my boss, but I won't get final approval until about three weeks out. I was just given more responsibility at my job too, which makes me a little more nervous about getting the time off. Still, there's nothing I can do, but wait and hope. I think I have a plan for ADR's that I'm happy with. I hope to post that tonight, but posting about this trip without my wife finding out is becoming more and more difficult. She's always asking what I'm doing now that our December trip planning is over.
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Me , DW , DD , DS , Rhino

March 2012 TR October 2012 PTR
Mar 2012: Coronado Springs; Mar 2011: French Quarter; Dec 2010: Port Orleans French Quarter; Oct 2008: All Star Movies - Disneymoon; June 2005: Pop Century; July 2004: Offsite; 1993: Contemporary; 1992: DL (offsite); 1991: Offsite; 1989: DL (offsite); 1987: DL (offsite)
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