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Old 06-12-2012, 11:05 AM   #61
jdd
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Subbing! Confirmed my love of CBR with a recent trip (hadn't been there since 2007). Can't wait to go back - and looking forward to reading this report
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Old 06-12-2012, 11:09 AM   #62
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Well, HOWDY!!!! So glad that you started your report. I always love them -- you guys just seem to have such a good time together on your trips. Can't wait to read all about it.

And seriously -- FIVE pages in, and you've only done the intros!!! This one might be hard to keep up with!!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 12:43 PM   #63
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Howdy==Im joining in the fun!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 12:51 PM   #64
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Hi Lisa! Can't wait to read the next installment!!! Like I tell you over & over again, I live through your trip reports!!! Who knows when we will make it to WDW again, so I have to imagine!!! We are aiming for next year!! Keeping my fingers crossed!

It must be raining all over the US today! Raining here today too! It's a nice refresher though because it has been so hot here!!!! Hope your garden is enjoying their day of "drinking"!!!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 12:55 PM   #65
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Howdy Lisa!!! I can't wait to read more!!! I'm a new reader but your reports sound like a lot of fun!!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:03 PM   #66
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I'll send you the full size picture if you send me your e-mail. It was really great to meet you and I hope your boss didn't care we crashed your office.

Oh and disboard friends you will be happy to know Lisa's office is all Disneyfied.
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:04 PM   #67
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wow that was bigger than i thought it was going to be. Yea we got out of your office and Emily was like fix your ponytail it's falling. I was like you couldn't have told me that before you took the picture.
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:14 PM   #68
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Followed your link on FB and ready to ready along! We just took our first Disney cruise on the Dream last month so I am curious to see what another first-timer thinks.
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:43 PM   #69
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Details, details, details!

Details, Details, Details!


For the sake of those who didn’t read my trip report (I don’t hold it against you ‘cause you’re here now and that’s all that matters ), this post will include several tidbits of information and a few of the conversations that came up while planning our annual Summer trip all of which were posted in my pre-trip report. I’m a little lazy and it’s so much easier to copy and paste than it is to type all that information all over again. Oh and this installment is going to be long and wordy (I just can’t help myself. I like to give and read details.) and won’t have a lot of pictures in the beginning but I feel like I need to post the information so you’ll get a lay-of-the-McBride-trip-planning land.

After I get through talking about all the details, I pinky promise, that I will get to the “good stuff” like actually hitting the road and pictures and things like that. Just hang with me. Pretty please!

This vacation started out like any other McBride vacation....a Summer trip to Walt Disney World. Eleven glorious nights at the Caribbean Beach Resort soaking up the bright Florida sunshine. They should bottle that stuff. I bet they could get a pretty penny for it on Ebay. We were booked under the Spring Offer and I had all of our park days planned out, our down days worked into the schedule and our ADRs made. Everything was set. And then..........................(pasted from the pre-trip report):

Then, I got a newsletter email from either Disney, Allearsnet, the Dis or possibly PassPorter and it had an article in it about the Disney Cruise Line, specifically, the Disney Dream. I clicked on the handy dandy link provided and I was directed straight to the Disney Cruise Line site. How convenient huh. I figured, heck, while I’m on the site, I might as well price out a cruise. Click, click, clickedy click and up popped a price. Hum, that’s not such a bad price. Wonder if we’d like a cruise? Probably not, John’s not one for trying something new. Still, the price was pretty tempting. I figured I’d bring up the subject during our daily lunch time telephone chats.

That chat went a little something like this:

John: “Hey Sweetie britches!” (He may be Mr. Stuck In A Rut or Mr. Drags His Butt In The Morning but he’s also Mr. Turn On The Charm when he wants to be.”

Me: “Hey, what cha doing?”

John: “Eating my vienna sausages.” (He loves those stinky things.) “What are you doing?”

Me: “About to eat my sandwich. Hey, do you think you’d like to go to the Bahamas?”

John: “Yeah, I guess. But what about Disney? We always go to Disney.”

Me: “We could do both. We could go to Disney and to the Bahamas if we took a Disney cruise.”
John: “I don’t know. Remember that story on the news about those pirates who took over that ship and lots of people got killed? I don’t want to get killed. And remember that story about that person who fell overboard and was never found? I don’t want to fall overboard and get eaten by sharks or something.”

Me: “That was somewhere over in another country silly and it wasn’t a cruise ship. It was some other kind of ship. And that person didn’t fall overboard, they were nutso and they jumped overboard. We wouldn’t be going on some other kind of ship and we aren’t nutso so we wouldn’t be jumping overboard.”

John: “I don’t know. I don't like pirates and we are pretty nutso. I’ll have to think about it over my vienna sausages.”

Me: “Well, okay. I guess I’ll let you go so you can think about it and I can eat my sandwich. Love ya!”

John: “Love ya too sweetie britches!” (Ahhhh....where did I find this sweet talking guy?)

While John may hold many titles (Mr. Stuck In A Rut, Mr. Drags His Butt In The Morning, etc.), I hold a few of my own and this time Mrs. I Can’t Leave Well Enough Alone couldn’t, well, leave well enough alone. So I continued to tap tap tap on the keys and play around on the Disney Cruise Line site and the more I did, the more interested I became in going on a cruise. The only problem was the cruises left on a Thursday and returned on a Sunday. That meant our time in Walt Disney World would be cut back by a few days. I wasn’t sure if we’d like that. I took notes anyway and figured I’d bring it up again that night.

Mrs. Can’t Hold It In Any Longer approached the cruise subject again after dinner and John, full belly, sittin’ on the couch waiting on Swamp People to come on, was open for the discussion. I told him all about how a cruise would effect our Disney plans, when we would get on the cruise ship, where the ship would be going, etc. I also reminded him that there were no pirate threats and I promised if he had even one iota of a nutso look on his face during the cruise, I’d hogtie him and immediately haul him to the ship’s doctor for a psychiatric evaluation. “Well, then, I guess you can go ahead and book it.” And book it I did! But, not without some problems.


**Back to our regularly scheduled trip report:

I was eventually able to book the cruise and, over the course of the trip planning, I even upgraded our stateroom two times to a Deluxe Family Stateroom. I called and modified our existing Walt Disney World vacation and was able to keep the Spring Offer. Score! Also, during the course of all this cruise booking, vacation changing around, we invited Lacey and Jesse to join us on the Walt Disney World portion of our trip. They graciously declined....NOT! Their dates were May 27th to June 2nd.

As Chief Caller of the Disney Travel Co. Reservation Center, I booked their trip and I was even able to keep a secret from Hunter and John. They thought that we were staying at All Star Music Resort for our one night pre-cruise. My secret? I changed our reservation from All Star Music to Port Orleans Riverside. Over the years, we have thought about trying another moderate but were afraid to because we loved the Caribbean Beach Resort so much. I was excited about the secret and about staying at Port Orleans even if it were for just one night. And, then one night we were working in the shop and John asked a simple question.........................(pasted from pre-trip report)

John: "So what day are we leaving for vacation?"

Me: "We start driving on May 22nd as soon as I get home from work".

John: "What day of the week is that?"

Me: "It's a Tuesday, why?"

John: "And when are we coming back?"

Me: "On Saturday, June 2nd. I've already told you all this before. Why are you asking now?"

John: "I need to go to work and make sure that they have the dates down right on the calendar."

Me: "Oh."

And I hopped down from the tailgate and pushed another wheelbarrow load of wood scraps down to the trash pile. When I got back, John was still standing in the shop doorway.

John: "Hey Sweetie Britches, do you think that we could add another day to our trip?"

Me: "I don't know. If we added another day at the end, that would put us driving all the way home on Sunday and we wouldn't get home until early Monday morning. I know that Paul (that's my boss) would hate it if he knew I was actually back in town but just sleeping in that day. I've already looked at airfare and it would cost us about $900 for us to fly. But, if we did fly, we could get back in about 3 hours instead of 15 hours like when we drive."

John: "But, then, we'd have to rent a car or get Mickey to take us to the Port and that would cost even more money. Why can't we add the extra day to the beginning of the trip?"

Me: "We're already taking Hunter out of school two days early. I don't know about taking him out another day. What do you think?"

John: "You know good and well that they don't do anything the last week of school. They are cleaning out lockers and crap like that."

Me: "Yeah, you're right."
John: "So how much would it cost to add the day?"

Me: "I guess I gotta tell you my surprise."

John: "What surprise?"

Me: "I wasn't going to tell you but I have to now. I changed our first night's reservation from All Star Music to Port Orleans Riverside. It didn't cost that much and I thought it'd be nice to try another moderate. I wanted to surprise you and Hunter when we got there."

John: "Aww, that was sweet. I can pretend that I didn't know and when we get there act all surprised."

Me: "You are such a goofball. What I'm saying is that since we are staying at Port Orleans Riverside, it would cost us more that you thought it would to add another night. But, I can call Disney and find out what it would cost to add the day and if they would let me keep the Spring Offer."

John: "Well what are you waiting for? Go make the call."


**Back to trip report:

Because the reservation center was already closed for the night, I made the call the next day and after some looking around on the computer, the castmember said that we could change our Port Orleans Riverside stay to the Caribbean Beach Resort AND keep our Spring Offer even though it had long since been taken off the Disney site. What was the best part of it all? We were under budget for that extra day! Ooooooh yeaaaaaah!

So, to sum up all the above:

1) We were scheduled for an 11 night trip to Walt Disney World staying at Caribbean Beach Resort where the sun shines all day long and I swear I hear angels singing;

2) I, a/k/a Sweetie Britches, received an interesting email which put the idea of a cruise in my head;

3) John and Sweetie Britches have a talk and we book the cruise despite the fact that John had fears that the cruise ship would be taken over by pirates or we would fall overboard;

4) Lacey and Jesse come for a visit and we invited them to go to Walt Disney World with us;

5) John asked an innocent question about how long we were staying and we end up adding another day to the first portion of the trip and my secret is o-u-t. That’s okay though ‘cause we got a great deal by staying at the Caribbean Beach Resort.

Our revised plans:

Leave home as soon as I get home from work on May 21st and drive to Crestview, Florida

Wake up on May 22nd and drive the rest of the way to Walt Disney World and stay at the Caribbean Beach Resort May 22nd and 23rd

Drive to Port Canaveral on the morning of May 24th and board the Disney Dream for our first ever cruise

Head back to the Caribbean Beach Resort on May 27th for a six night stay

Lacey and Jesse drive down on May 27th and stay until June 2nd

Enough about the details of how the trip came about and what they now were. I promised that I’d get to the “good stuff” so let’s get this darn trip report rolling. Rolling! Rolling! Rolling down the river. Well, not down the river as Miss Tina Turner so eloquently sang but rolling down the road. The looooong road from North Louisiana to Lake Buena Vista, Florida where Mickey is the main man and eating Dole Whips for breakfast is the norm.

************************************************** *******

For two or three evenings leading up to the vacation, I pondered the question of how to pack. I normally pack an overnight bag for our first driving day and the rest of our clothes go into various suitcases. This time, I was packing for a three part vacation so I had to change my packing strategy. Finally, I decided to pack our overnight things, our two days at the CBR clothes and our cruise clothes together in two separate suitcases. Because we would need to dress up for our cruise dinners, I also had to bring along dress shoes for us all when I normally would just pack flip flops, Crocs and tennis shoes. That meant another bag just for shoes and a garment bag for our dresses (well, my dresses and John and Hunter’s khakis and polos). This kind of packing was for the birds!

The night before our departure for our long road trip, everything was all packed and ready to be loaded into the SCAR. The SCAR? Yeah, we don’t know what to call our new vehicle. It’s a crossover so it’s not really a car and it’s not really an SUV so we call it a SCAR. And, it’s a Disney name so it stuck. We drug all the luggage into the dining room and did a trial run on how everything would fit into the SCAR. We worked on the luggage loading puzzle, moving things this way and that way until the puzzle was solved. Then, we took everything back into the house. The neighborhood I work in isn’t the greatest so I didn’t want to leave it all in the back of the SCAR. It’d be safer to put it all in right before we left even if it did mean that we’d have to take the time to load it all back in.

May 21st was THE day, the day that we were leaving on our latest adventure....an adventure that would take us to Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort for two nights, to the Bahamas on the Disney Dream for three nights/four days, and back to Walt Disney World and the Caribbean Beach for six nights/days.

Unfortunately May 21st was also THE day that my boss decided to clean off his desk. Why do bosses do such things? I mean, seriously? For 364 days out of the year, he doesn’t mind if his desk looks like a tornado hit it and he wants to choose May 21, 2012 as the day to clean it off? I love the man, don’t get me wrong, but you want to clean off your desk on the day I leave for Walt Disney World? Ugh! Fortunately for him, I chose to not smack him on the back of the head but, instead, to put a smile on my face and get ‘er done quickly. It actually did get done quickly ‘cause a clean desk to my boss and a clean desk to the rest of the world mean two totally different things. His idea of a clean desk means throwing away old messages, giving me papers to be filed, making a couple of stacks on his desk and boom bam, the desk is cleaned off.

Other than cleaning off the desk, we had one deadline which I made sure was done and over with by lunch time. Oh and I had to get monthly billing out and I had that done by 3:30 p.m. which was also around the time that my boss decided to bid the office and myself adieu and leave. What? No “Hey Lisa, I know that you’ve got the trip of a lifetime waiting on you so why don’t you leave?” No “Wanna leave early too?” No “Get the heck outta here and have a great time?”. Nope. Just a “Hope you have a great trip!”. Hey, I quickly got over the sting when I realized that his leaving also meant that he couldn’t give me any more tasks that just had to go out that day.

Hum....what to do? What to do? I did the filing that he gave me, took all of my personal things out of my desk because the lady filling in for me is a nosey rosey, made sure that the temp’s list of things to do was smack in the middle of my desk and that’s about all there was. Me likey!

John called about 4:00 to say that he was home and that he was going to jump in the shower and then run to Sonic and grab us some burgers to eat before we hit the road. Our SCAR is just six months old so he’s still protective of it and doesn’t want the “new smell” to go away any quicker than necessary. Meaning, no eating of real food in the car yet. I told him that I’d be on my way home as soon as I possibly could and confirmed that he remembered the luggage puzzle. (He did.)

I waited at work listening to the old clock ticking until I couldn’t stand it any more. At 4:54 p.m., I said to myself “Self, why are you still sittin’ here? Go!” I didn’t have to tell self to Go! more than that one time and I was out the door. Lock that sucker up and hit the road before all of the Parish Courthouse, Sheriff’s Department and District Attorney’s office employees did. Get a jump start on ‘em girl! I hit the pavement running and I was over the bridge and dropping off the mail at the Post Office in three minutes flat. I don’t play around when it comes to starting my vacation off.

When I got home, I ate, changed clothes and helped hauled luggage outside all at the same time. Mama came over to see if there was anything that she could help with and to give us a goodbye hug. We had everything loaded in the SCAR, passed around hugs, made a final potty call and were on Interstate 20 at:



Yeah baby! My goal was to be on the road by no later than 5:45 p.m. and we made it. The McBrides were officially on vacation!

John was in charge of the camera and he missed taking a picture of the Elvis tree. You’ve never heard of the Elvis tree? Where have ya’ll been living? Under a rock or something? The Elvis tree is in a field in the middle of nowhere. If you are traveling East on I-20, the Elvis tree will be on your right hand side and pretty far out into the field. Wanna see a picture that I borrowed from the internet?



Don’t see Elvis? Look really hard. It’s Elvis doing one of his rockabilly moves. This a side view of Elvis. He’s kinda slump shouldered and singing in to the microphone. Okay, so maybe it’s a stretch of the imagination but everybody around here knows about the Elvis tree. That single tree put Waverly, Louisiana on the gosh darn map people.

We were all giddy with excitement and talked about the upcoming trip and, since there was nothing but fields and fields of crops to look at, John didn’t take any pictures. That is, until we got close to the Mississippi River which also meant that we were about to cross into the fine State of Mississippi....home of TinksThree and many other fabulous people.







The Mississippi River, the Mighty Mississip. Deeeeeep River! My home is over Jordan! That’s John singing Chevy Chase’s part in “Vacation”. We can’t pass over the Mississippi River without John singing that song. It’s as much a part of our vacation as is, as is, well, it’s part of our vacation.

First official exit into the State of Mississippi which is also where I had to take my first official tinkle break.



I thought I was gonna be a big girl and hold it for a really long time but my bladder plays mind games with me and I just have to stop. I’m telling you. It’s a mental thing. I can’t help it!

John took this picture while he and Hunter were waiting on me.



See anything wrong with the picture? The dog is facing right but the dog trail is left. Guess they didn’t have any signs with a dog facing left.

Just 5, 6, maybe 7 minutes later, I was back behind the wheel of the SCAR and we were off once again. First official potty break checked off the list and I was good to go. Thank goodness, because my two men decided it was time to take a little catnap. I picked up the camera about the time that we were on the outskirts of Jackson, Mississippi and tried to snap a picture of what I like to refer to as the EPCOT ball building thingie. You can’t see it very well in the picture but the building has a domed top on it that reminds me of Spaceship Earth.



Oh I forgot to ask, for those of you who travel I-20 and go through that stretch of the road between Vicksburg and Jackson, does that wavy section of the road bother the heck out of you? It’s like riding a surf board through giant waves. Up and down and up and down.

The drive through Jackson, Hattiesburg and on to Mobile was uneventful. John would call Mama every now and then and tell her where we were. She’s a tad bit, okay a whole lotta bit, of a nervous person when she knows that her family is on the road so we check in with her pretty often. Hunter tried to take some pictures as we approached Mobile, Alabama which is home to my dear friend, Dana, a/k/a racefanof88.





Hey, we’re in a tunnel. Gotta honk the horn! BEEEEEEEEEEEEP!







I can’t remember what time it was when we made it to the rest stop in Florida but I do remember that the temperature was a whole lot better than it was when we left Louisiana. Did you notice the first picture that I posted? The temperature was 91. We bought a few snacks and walked around a bit to ease the numbness out of our behinds. I picked up one of the travel brochures there at the rest area so we could call ahead and make arrangements for a room.



After the short break, we continued our travels until we came to the haunted Jameson Inn in Crestview, Florida. The time?



I told John to go in and work his magic on the desk clerk. He’s a whiz at sweet talking the front desk clerks and getting a good rate on a room. While he was inside, I took a picture of the odometer showing how many miles we had traveled.



John came back and he had, indeed, gotten a good rate...just $59.99 for the night which is good considering rack rate is over $100.00. We unloaded just the bags that we needed and, even though it was now the wee hours of the morning, I remembered to take a few pictures of the room.



Apparently, Hunter had an itchy back. Maybe the ghosts were tickling him. Ooooooh scaaaaary thought!





Guess I wanted to take a picture of our view:



I was in the bed in no time flat. John and Hunter, on the other hand, having taken a few catnaps here and there, were ready to watch an episode of Duck Dynasty they had found on the television. I don’t know how long they lasted but I do know that when I woke up, John had his feet on the pillow and his head at the end of the bed and Hunter was holding the remote in his hand. Apparently, the ghosties that inhabit the hotel had left us alone for the night which was a good thing ‘cause I really didn’t want to spend the extra money to call the Ghostbusters guys.

**Up next: On the road again! I just can’t wait to get on the road again. Sing it Willie!
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2014 trip report: Disney dangled the visual weinee and Mickeystoontown gobbled it up! Our two week adventure!
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....6#post51642226



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Old 06-12-2012, 03:00 PM   #70
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Howdy Lisa! I know I'm late, but am excited to see you started your trip report!

I have a bit of the Disney blues too - so seeing your report has started made my day.

I'm off to read now and get caught up.
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:07 PM   #71
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Just had to say Hi!!

Hey, Lisa, I am a long time lurker that finally got the nerve to post. Glad you guys are back and glad you had a good time. Can't wait to read more about your trip. I have read just about all of your old trip reports and I get such a kick reading about Monroe because ... that is my hometown!! Yes, right there in good ol' St Francis Hospital. I am no longer there and most of my family has either moved heavenward or just away. Ok, enough about me, just wanted you to know!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:13 PM   #72
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Great start to your trip! ugh bosses! My boss lets us leave early a lot except of course on the days that I actually need to leave early! looking forward to the next update!
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:18 PM   #73
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Signing up! Great start to the trip, I can only imagine counting those last minutes and leaving a whopping 6 minutes early! I'm slightly sad you had to give up POR for a couple of nights but I know you'll be happy at your "home".

I don't know what it is but be it a boss, a client or whatnot, work is always at it's craziest right before a vacation!!!
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:26 PM   #74
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Yay for the first update.

I know that feeling of the last day before a vacation and the boss giving you extra to do. Glad you made it out on time still and had a good start to your drive, and no ghosts at the haunted hotel. Can't wait for the next update!
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:28 PM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JessietheNCCowgirl View Post
Howdy Lisa! I know I'm late, but am excited to see you started your trip report!

I have a bit of the Disney blues too - so seeing your report has started made my day.

I'm off to read now and get caught up.
Never ever to late to join in on my reports! Welcome!


Quote:
Originally Posted by tiffer66 View Post
Hey, Lisa, I am a long time lurker that finally got the nerve to post. Glad you guys are back and glad you had a good time. Can't wait to read more about your trip. I have read just about all of your old trip reports and I get such a kick reading about Monroe because ... that is my hometown!! Yes, right there in good ol' St Francis Hospital. I am no longer there and most of my family has either moved heavenward or just away. Ok, enough about me, just wanted you to know!!
Seriously?! You're from Monroe? How cool is that! Oh, I forgot to say WELCOME! I hope that you'll continue to post 'cause I love reading everybody's thoughts and comments.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jenb1023 View Post
Great start to your trip! ugh bosses! My boss lets us leave early a lot except of course on the days that I actually need to leave early! looking forward to the next update!
That's the same thing that my boss does. He'll sometimes say "the phones aren't ringing so let's leave" but not on the day I am leaving for vacation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
Signing up! Great start to the trip, I can only imagine counting those last minutes and leaving a whopping 6 minutes early! I'm slightly sad you had to give up POR for a couple of nights but I know you'll be happy at your "home".

I don't know what it is but be it a boss, a client or whatnot, work is always at it's craziest right before a vacation!!!
Welcome! I was sad that we had to give up POR too but I was working with a budget when we added the extra day so it couldn't be avoided. I've already started trying to figure out how to get a night's stay in on our next trip.
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2014 trip report: Disney dangled the visual weinee and Mickeystoontown gobbled it up! Our two week adventure!
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