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Old 04-09-2011, 12:27 PM   #46
SoonerGirl
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Ugggg, I hate driving in the rain too, I would have been a nervous wreck!!

Being able to stop and get that fresh orange juice at the welcome center is a small consolation for such a long time in the car, but that's one part of our drive that I'm actually looking forward to
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Old 04-09-2011, 12:30 PM   #47
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We went looking for our room, which was in the 50's section, room 3236. This was the building with the large statute of Tramp, from Lady and the Tramp. We found it fairly easily and met our next door neighbors as they were on their way out.

These little fellas were waiting for us!





Nice flat screen


A spot to start piling up our "stuff"


Nice view outside from the walkway



I noticed there was a wet spot on the carpet near the little table and chairs, but didn't care to fuss about it. Also, there was no shampoo in the shower. Is that typical? I hadn't stayed in a value in some time, but I didn't think they'd deny you some shampoo! Didn't matter, I had some with me anyway.

We unloaded a couple things, we were only staying one night remember, and I had packed so that I knew which bag I'd need to bring in. I was so organized!! (HA!) (This would be a bit of foreshadowing...)

Since it was Sarah's birthday, we'd brought her a present so she'd have something to open. She was told that the surprise was the big gift for both of them, so don't expect much else.


Her favorite player on the MN Twins is Joe Mauer so we got her a jersey. We have partial season tickets, so she'll get to wear this to a bunch of games.

We decided to get some food and then hit the pool (the bowling pin pool, since the Hippy Dippy Pool was closed for refurbishment.
We got dinner - nope, no pictures! I don't even know what we had! I do know that it cost $37!!! Yikes! I want the dining plan!! We paid OOP since we were only having one or two meals on this leg of our trip.
Then it was off to the pool!
The water was way too cold for me, so I just sat on the lounge chairs. I had noticed that on the other side of the lake there was some construction going on. I asked a lifeguard and he said it was the new Animation resort. It was hard to tell much from a distance. It sort of looked like a dorm to me!

We saw a lot of clouds rolling in and then we saw lightning in the distance. We headed back to the room and got ready for bed - at 7:00!!! It was a long day (and previous night) and we were all pretty tired. It started raining and I thought, oh no, I hope it's not raining tomorrow when we go to the ship!

Everyone was asleep by about 8:30!! Well, everyone but me, since I wrote that in my journal, I must have been awake then!

DH and I had talked about how we were going to surprise the girls with the news of the cruise. We had pillowcases made that were embroidered with their names, the dates of the cruise and the DCL logo. They were going to get autographs on them on the ship. We decided that in the morning we would give them the pillowcases.

I need to check and see if DH was able to upload the video of the surprise so that will have to be our big cliffhanger for today!!

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Old 04-09-2011, 01:13 PM   #48
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YOU SO ROCK SHEREE!!! Thanks so much for all your wonderful notes on the trip down!!! So amazingly helpful!!! I already have mapquest and AAA's triptik trip planner open and I am cross referencing all your stops and exit points!!!

Natalie was reading over my shoulder and saw the picture of Paige sitting in the car and said - "Mommy, that's Paigey!!! I really miss her, when will we see them again??"

$37 for supper!!!! Oh my word - Have to go to my budget sheet for food and make a note about that!! We will staying at AsMo our arrival night before we check into the Poly - that is a surprise for the girls!!! Natalie has always wanted to stay in the Dalmatian building!!!
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Old 04-09-2011, 01:37 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovemy3babes View Post
Oh man Sheree! You guys are troopers for doing the long drive from MN. That scares me a little bit. But it sounds like you are pros by now! Hurray for Pop!
Well, we've driven to FL at least 3 times with the kids and to VA or NY a couple times too. They know the rules - bring lots of stuff to do and everyone has to "try" whenever we stop! The kids are better than me. I always think it's such a waste of precious vacation time, but you can't beat the cost and freedom of having your car and packing whatever you want to bring.

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Originally Posted by Dancegrl624 View Post
What a drive!!! I can't even stand driving in the car for more than an hour...I go crazy. Your girls seem to do just fine in the car though. So does Madison. When we drove to Annapolis last July, she was perfect. We brought her Nintendo DS, portable dvd player, plenty of books...we hardly heard from her!

As you know, we just LOVE Pop!!! It's such a fun resort.
[COLOR="rgb(255, 0, 255)"][COLOR="rgb(255, 0, 255)"]Yup, keeping busy is the key. I just wish I could read in the car w/o getting sick. I'd be fine then. Pop was fun, I doubt we'll stay there much with DVC now, but I'd do a night here and there if I didn't have the points to spare or something. I was amazed at how busy it was! I shouldn't have been, but I was.[/COLOR][/COLOR]

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Originally Posted by SoonerGirl View Post
Ugggg, I hate driving in the rain too, I would have been a nervous wreck!!

Being able to stop and get that fresh orange juice at the welcome center is a small consolation for such a long time in the car, but that's one part of our drive that I'm actually looking forward to
Yeah, it was something fun to look forward to. At least it means we made it to FL!

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Originally Posted by Northern Disney Girl View Post
YOU SO ROCK SHEREE!!! Thanks so much for all your wonderful notes on the trip down!!! So amazingly helpful!!! I already have mapquest and AAA's triptik trip planner open and I am cross referencing all your stops and exit points!!!

Natalie was reading over my shoulder and saw the picture of Paige sitting in the car and said - "Mommy, that's Paigey!!! I really miss her, when will we see them again??"

$37 for supper!!!! Oh my word - Have to go to my budget sheet for food and make a note about that!! We will staying at AsMo our arrival night before we check into the Poly - that is a surprise for the girls!!! Natalie has always wanted to stay in the Dalmatian building!!!
[COLOR="rgb(255, 0, 255)"]Oh thanks Kim!! If you have any questions along the way just ask! We tried to stop only when we were getting low on gas and with driving at night, the kids didn't seem to need as many pit stops. I just watched my fluid intake, because I seem to be the one with the tiny bladder in the family!

Natalie is so sweet!!! I have to tell Paige what she said. I also have to send you some of the brochures/maps that I grabbed for you! I'll have Paige write to Nat too! Hopefully we can meet up on your way to or from WDW this summer if you come through MN again! I'll certainly let you know if we plan any outings to Duluth - maybe we can meet somewhere up there.

Yeah, I wish I could remember what we ate that was so pricey! I think years ago, DH and I went to WDW for the 2000 celebration and stayed at ASMO and I want to say we had 101 Dalmatians stuff in our room.
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Old 04-09-2011, 03:38 PM   #50
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You made it to POP! Hooray! What a nice break from the drive, and how exciting for you to know there is SO much more to come!

Hope to see the video soon!
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Old 04-09-2011, 09:07 PM   #51
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Love the jersey!!!!

I'm so excited to see how the girls react to the surprise!!
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Old 04-09-2011, 09:41 PM   #52
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Hi, Sheree. I'm here and enjoying hearing about your journey. Can't wait to hear about the girls' reaction to the surprise!
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Aug. 20-22, 2010: ASMu ("The Last-Minute Super-Bargain Bonus Trip") | June 3-7, 2010: Pop/AKL ("Star Wars Nightastically Delicious!")
Jan. 16-25, 2010: Poly/WL/POR ("The Magic and The Misery") | Sept. 9-14, 2009: Pop Century ("The Prequel") | March 10-17, 1990: Offsite ("A Disney Walk Back in Time...on Four Paws")


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Old 04-10-2011, 07:58 AM   #53
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Ugh, I hate driving in the rain and dark as well! That Florida welcome sign must have been a doubly wonderful sight after that drive!!!

Nope, they normally give you shampoo in the values! Pop always makes me smile -- it is so colorful and fun!

Can't wait to see the girls' reactions to the news of the cruise!
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Old 04-10-2011, 08:00 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natebenma View Post
You made it to POP! Hooray! What a nice break from the drive, and how exciting for you to know there is SO much more to come!

Hope to see the video soon!
Video coming up!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by crzyred View Post
Love the jersey!!!!

I'm so excited to see how the girls react to the surprise!!
That's right, you're a baseball fan too!! She just LOVES Mauer!! (her and a million other young women!)
The reaction is coming up!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dugette View Post
Hi, Sheree. I'm here and enjoying hearing about your journey. Can't wait to hear about the girls' reaction to the surprise!
The video has been uploaded to photobucket! Coming up after these replies!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charleston Princess View Post
Ugh, I hate driving in the rain and dark as well! That Florida welcome sign must have been a doubly wonderful sight after that drive!!!

Nope, they normally give you shampoo in the values! Pop always makes me smile -- it is so colorful and fun!

Can't wait to see the girls' reactions to the news of the cruise!
I was really excited to be in Florida! Pop does seem to be a "happy" kind of place. I thought they should at least have shampoo!! They didn't have a bag for laundry either!

Last edited by Mndisneygirl; 04-10-2011 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 04-10-2011, 08:28 PM   #55
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Surprise - Today is "Someday"!!!

Well, Dave and I were talking about our $37 dinner at POP and we think it included a cheeseburger, kids chicken strips and some kind of flatbread. Plus drinks. Still pretty pricey!!

Onward to the big reveal!!!
We woke up around 7:00 a.m. and guess what? IT WAS RAINING!!! Since we used our towels from the room at the pool, we called housekeeping to get more. DH went looking too, and found a housekeeper and asked her for a bag for dirty laundry. He came back with a GINORMOUS plastic bag that would have held a week's worth of laundry!!! It was funny to just put one or two day's worth of dirty undies and t-shirts in it!
We got our Envelope of Doom - it wasn't too bad since it was just for one night (which we paid for with a gift card) and our big expensive dinner!

Once we were just about ready to get going to get some breakfast, we decided to spring it on the girls.
We told them to sit on the bed and we had birthday presents for them.

Here's the video of what happened next: (man I hope this works!!)






Our Fish Extender


We copied this from one of the DISigners. Dave just saved it on the computer as a possible way to surprise the girls. Isn't it cute?

After the girls stopped flipping out, we had them call Grandma. (My mom) She knew we were going on the cruise and all, but pretended she didn't so Sarah had to call and tell her all about the surprise. That took a little while, and we had to get going to eat and repack a few things and get to the port.

We hustled out to the car and loaded stuff up in the rain. (this rushing would prove to be a problem later - Yup, more foreshadowing)

Then we grabbed some less expensive breakfast at Everything Pop and took some pictures before we left.
We got two kids meals (probably waffles and french toast) and a chocolate croissant for $12.

Oh my gosh, that place was so crowded!!! We barely looked at anything in the store (I wish we'd had a little more time), but all the type of stuff we were looking for like 2011 merchandise would be available later on in the trip.

A few wet pictures around POP



The food court





No swimming!





So we hit the road in the rain - again!!
Funny thing is, this is the third Disney cruise we've taken. It's the third time we have driven to the port in the rain!!! I hope someone's not trying to tell us something!! Luckily, the rain seems to have lightened or gone away on our past two cruises by sail away time. Would it this time?? You'll have to wait and see.

So we get on the highway - some toll road that cost us $2.50 (two tolls) and DH says, Oh craparewski! Yes, that's exactly what he said!! I panic, because he doesn't explain the "craparewski" right away. Big long pause until I say,
"what?". About 5 minutes later (or so it seemed), he said, "we need gas. I was going to get some before we got on the toll road." Oh, is that all???
Well, let's stop and get some.
We don't see any nice little signs that say there are gas stations and fast food at the next exit like they have on the interstates. We go through the second toll and ask the lady at the booth. She gave some really weird exit and told us to go by the airport. Uh, no, don't think so.
SO we go a few more exits and get off where it looks like there is some life and businesses.
We see a Publix and some restaurants and find a Hess or something. PHEW! It's a bit after 11, and I really thought it was okay time-wise. It wouldn't do any good to get to the port much before noon anyway.
We filled up at $3.54 per gallon and got back on the road.

Still raining as we drove over the "bridge" causeway thingy that leads to Port Canaveral. It was SO COOL to be able to spot the ships in port through the mist and fog!!! The Dream looked so BIG!!!! It is a lot bigger than the Wonder and Magic!

I'll find those pictures for the next update - if they're any good!!!

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Old 04-10-2011, 08:58 PM   #56
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Love the video of the surprise, put a great big smile on my face! And I must say, I love listening to you guys talk, reminds me of 'home'. My parents were both born and raised in Minnesota and I spent every summer vacation there as a kid visiting relatives. In fact I'm going up next month for my cousin's high school graduation

I'm a little worried that you might have left something important in the room......
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:15 PM   #57
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I caught up just at the right time!
First of all, all of that rain on your trip down.... UGH!
Next I can't wait for our drink of OJ at the welcome center!!
Lastly the video, You look terrific! The surprise turned out just perfect!
I'm anxious to read more!
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:18 PM   #58
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I'm a little worried that you might have left something important in the room......
I was thinking the same thing too....
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:18 PM   #59
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LOVE the video!!! Sarah's little dance was just so adorable!!! What a surprise filled trip you had!!! Hope that the rain lets up for you at some point!!! Can't wait to read more!!!
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:50 PM   #60
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Great start to your TR! I loved the surprise video. It's so fun to watch the kids faces as they figure it out.

Sounds like you made good time on the drive despite the rainy weather. I would have had a hard time sleeping while DH drove through bad weather too. I always feel better with another set of eyes on the road.

Love the Mauer jersey too! We have a Mauer fan and a Morneau fan at our house. Hope the jersey and your families presence brings our struggling team a little luck. I know it's early in the season and we already lost our 2nd baseman, but come on guys! It's never easy to be a Minnesota sports fans. . .

Looking forward to your first impressions of the Dream.
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