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Old 06-26-2011, 08:41 PM   #1
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
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Four Families, One World: A Mome Rath Meets Beverly! May 29-June 5, 2011


I decided on Sunday May 22, 2011 that I had had enough. I endured the carppiest weekend of my life, topped off by DD being diagnosed with a double case of pink eye and a side of sinus infection. I was tired and about to embark upon the final week of school and possible unemployment. As a student aide, AKA paraprofessional, the student I had been with for the last four years was graduating. I already lost it (emotionally) when his sister graduated the year before, and though I am much closer to her, his graduation was exceptionally hard for me to grasp. Also, not having a student anymore leads to me not knowing where/if I would have a job the following fall.

Stick a fork in me… I.WAS.DONE.

Then I recalled that one of my dearest friends and her mother were headed to WDW in a few days. I had been invited along at least twice and turned down both offers since my family was in Disney the previous September for a fantastic trip and MNSSHP (which was AWESOME!!!). I had spoken to my friend days before and was reminded yet again that there would still be room in the condo if I would like to join them.

So after the kids went to bed that night, I asked DH if I could go. I can’t recall the EXACT conversation, but it went something like this:

ME: “I think I want to go to Disney with Norma and the family”
DH: “You’d have to take the kids”
ME: “Okay”
DH: “How long would you be gone?”
ME: “About ten days”
DH: “TEN DAYS!!!!”
ME: “Well, we would drive”
DH: “You will have to take the kids”
ME: “Are you sure??”
DH: “I’ll have time to relax and clean the house”


Over the next couple days I schemed and calculated. Thought and mapped. And figured out that I could get us there and back for around $1000. Not too terrible for gas being $3.85 in Indiana, driving, paying OOP for meals, paying for 6 days of park tickets, and picking up a few souvenirs. [My fatal flaw in this calculation was neglecting to account for paid parking. I’ll touch on that later…]

So Wednesday rolls around and my friend’s son, Prince Philip, spills the beans to DS that we were going to Disney World together. DS didn’t believe him at first. There is no way we would be leaving for a trip in a couple days – we had planning and traditions to complete before a trip! I told both kids the truth once I got home from my photography assignment and was met with a less than excited response. DS said, “Yeah, I know… Prince Philip told me!”

Oy!
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Old 06-26-2011, 08:43 PM   #2
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
This vicarious living is wonderful!
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Official place holder for chapter links and other nonsense

The title says it all.

I will keep chapter links and other important notices here.



Chapter 2: And we're off!!
Chapter 3: Day 1 - The Fountains
Chapter 4: Day 2 - EP alone with the kids
Chapter 5: EP Part 2 – in the golden afternoon
Chapter 6: Day 3 – DHS via O'Hana
Chpater 7: Day 3 – Gee guys, what are we going to do today?
Chapter 8: Day 3 – DHS afternoon naps all around
Chapter 9: I was going to make you wait, but that would just be mean of me...
Chapter 10: Day 4 – AK and learning Disney’s best kept secret
Chapter 11: Day 4 – the home of the spiteful water gods
Chapter 12: Day 5 - MK
Chapter 13: MK continued...
Chapter 14: MK after the storm
Chapter 15: MK & MSEP
Chapter 16: Cast Member Appreciation Moment
Chapter 17: MK again!
Chapter 18: Yo ho, yo ho a pirate's life for we
Chapter 19: Epic something or other
Chapter 20: A comparative post on construction
Chapter 21: Day 7 - EP
Chapter 22: The End is Near
Chapter 23: OK... Here's the list
Chapter 24: Autograph book making 101
Chapter 25: The most depressing day of vacation
Chapter 26: Photopass pictures!

Last edited by kwitcherkicken99; 08-10-2011 at 12:16 PM.
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Old 06-26-2011, 08:45 PM   #3
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
This vicarious living is wonderful!
I'll take getting my feet up all the way
 
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Chapter 2: And we're off!

The next day I’m off to buy ponchos, glow sticks, and 2 gallon zip lock bags at the dollar store. Then I spent the next few hours packing up my car and making new autograph books. The beastly stroller fit, as did our luggage. A conversation with my friend, Princess Leia, later and our game plan was set. I was to go to work, her family would pick up her sister down south of Indianapolis, and we would meet up somewhere along the way.

On Friday, we finished school a little late, and by the time I got through the line at the bank, I was already 45 minutes behind schedule!

The other half of the group was already three hours ahead of me on the road. They took their time, and I drove **ahem** slightly above the speed limit. We eventually met up in Elizabethtown, KY, swapped kids to the little girls were in the van with the DVD players, and Princess Leia and I had the boys in my car.

We would then drive through the night to reach Orlando and hoped and prayed that we would have a room available when we got there!

We took our time getting to Florida, taking many stops to stretch and swap drivers. We only had 4 licensed drivers on board so we knew we would have to be very careful! Getting through the Tennessee mountains in the middle of the night was a PITA.

Oh heck… I just realized I’ve neglected to give you all proper introductions!

Family 1: Grandma Norma. Resident pin trader and certified Disney nut. Son is a former CM, so Norma and her husband bought into a time share company that offers condos 2 miles from the Disney apartments just off SR 535. That allowed them to take at least 2 trips per year to go down for a visit.

Family 2: Princess Leia, Prince Philip, and Bella. My dearest friend and close confidant. Her son is 2 months older than my DS, her daughter is 2 months younger than DD.

Family 3: Debbie and Linzie. Norma’s step-daughter and Princess Leia’s half sister. Linzie is her pre-teen daughter.

Family 4: Mine. Me, DS4 and DD2.

We finally arrived at the Fountains on I-Drive around noon on Saturday. They didn’t have a room available, so we slapped on our swim suits and hung out at the gigantic pool.
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Old 06-26-2011, 09:48 PM   #4
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OK........ I haven't read a word yet, but couldn't resist trying to be first!

........ but then I've always been an overachiever like that.
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwitcherkicken99 View Post
So Wednesday rolls around and my friend’s son, Prince Philip, spills the beans to DS that we were going to Disney World together. DS didn’t believe him at first. There is no way we would be leaving for a trip in a couple days – we had planning and traditions to complete before a trip! I told both kids the truth once I got home from my photography assignment and was met with a less than excited response. DS said, “Yeah, I know… Prince Philip told me!”

Oy!
LOL! Katie would just say "No way are we going in 2 days. My mom didn't do any sewing!"
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:02 PM   #6
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
This vicarious living is wonderful!
I'll take getting my feet up all the way
 
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Welcome aboard you!

I got my photos edited and sized, I just need to get them online. Still waiting for Photopass to get here... need to post our group shots so that I can prove I was ACTUALLY there.
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:06 PM   #7
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I bet it just seems like a dream.

We didn't take the boys to Disney until they were 4 and 6. That of course seems a lifetime ago to me. And now I have 2 Disney haters on my hands. I'm glad to see you're doing better with your 2!
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Old 06-26-2011, 11:46 PM   #8
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MOUSKETEERNow THAT sounds like a plan!.... send in the ferrets!
 
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Ok... I'm waiting to hear the whole story.... Don't leave anything out. I still can't understand how you can be over Disney for a while....
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Old 06-27-2011, 08:23 AM   #10
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Wow--that was a sudden decision!
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Old 06-27-2011, 09:31 AM   #11
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
This vicarious living is wonderful!
I'll take getting my feet up all the way
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2rtk View Post
LOL! Katie would just say "No way are we going in 2 days. My mom didn't do any sewing!"
Oh... I feel ya! We didn't complete any of our pre-trip rituals... no barage of movies, no countdown chain... we barely had time to talk about what we wanted to do on the trip! I like to get the kids involved in our planning - it makes them feel so special that they have a say. DD doesn't buy into it too much, but DS certainly has opinions!

Quote:
I bet it just seems like a dream.

We didn't take the boys to Disney until they were 4 and 6. That of course seems a lifetime ago to me. And now I have 2 Disney haters on my hands. I'm glad to see you're doing better with your 2!
I couldn't wait, and having both kids be included in our first trip... it wasn't a hard sell. Part of the reason DH was okay with this trip was that DD was still included. It would have probably been a big fat no if I would have had to pay for a ticket.

My ILs are helping too. They keep finding really cool vintage Disney merch at flea markets and buy it for me. Like last night, my FIL hands me this 20x20" bit of cardboard with Walt, Mickey, Donald, Goofy, and some of the other early characters on it. It had previously been framed, but not now. I've got to get it framed and find somewhere to hang it. It's really neat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by daisyyy View Post
Ok... I'm waiting to hear the whole story.... Don't leave anything out. I still can't understand how you can be over Disney for a while....
I made sure to type out everything we did in a laundry list right after we got back so I didn't forget anything!

I'll have to say, I'm not technically over Disney, more content that I've done what I wanted to get done with the kids for their ages. Now, a year ago... no way - I was fighting to get back (and I forced it to happen). Now I feel okay with us waiting for DS to turn 9 and DD to be 7 before we return. Before, I thought I was going to melt having to wait that long.

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Originally Posted by jenseib View Post
I'm here...now to go back and read


Quote:
Originally Posted by creativeamanda View Post
Wow--that was a sudden decision!
It was. I hit my wall and I needed a break. I tell ya, I didn't expect the boy's graduation to hit so hard. He's such a special kid and I can't say enough good things about he and his sister. I think we stumbled into each other's lives when we really needed each other. It's been a long road.
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Old 06-27-2011, 09:53 AM   #12
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I'm in!
I don't understand the 'no time to plan" method......My head would have exploded!
Our 10 day trip had a whole year of planning, and I still felt anxious.
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Old 06-27-2011, 10:18 AM   #13
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Now some person I don't even know reminds me there's no eating, drinking, smoking, or flash photography allowed in my dream.
 
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YEAH!!!!

I will be expecting daily updates to keep me happy or I will post awful college pictures of you once a day until said requested update occurs
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Old 06-27-2011, 10:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DISNEYaddict4evr View Post
YEAH!!!!

I will be expecting daily updates to keep me happy or I will post awful college pictures of you once a day until said requested update occurs
Man, now THAT's some leverage!
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Old 06-27-2011, 10:45 AM   #15
kwitcherkicken99
Sleep keeps me pretty. CAFFEINE keeps me NICE!
This vicarious living is wonderful!
I'll take getting my feet up all the way
 
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I'm working ahead in case I get swamped with life.

As for no plan included, Care, our recent trip was September 2010, so I wasn't too far out of the loop. Besides, I was practically doing the planning for that trip for my friend. All we did was insert ourselves.

Oh and E... I've got a couple pictures too. [in my best Kuzco voice] "Bring it on!"
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