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Old 07-26-2012, 09:07 AM   #1
tangled up
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A dream is a wish your heart makes Oct 2012 - Pre Trip Report

Introductions

I there, I'm Sarah from the UK, and I am here to share my pre trip for our 3 week holiday staying at OKW in October 2012.


Sarah Me 37
I am the obsessed Disney manic. After my first visit in November 2010, wants nothing more than Disney, filled holidays. I love everything about it, the planning, the rides, the FOOD...aaaw the food, now that is something. I am the chief planner, trip writer and well everything in our house. I would like to make this holiday as magical as the first, but that is going to be a lot to live up to. If I could sum up our last holiday in one word, well it would have to be WONDERFUL. I tend to go a little over board with the planning but I feel Disney holidays demand it, come one, please agree with me!! well maybe I do go overboard, but it is only for fun. Whilst I was planning the last holiday, I was not sure what to expect, I put so much into our first holiday with the mouse, and really I didn’t’ know what to expect. I don’t think to be honest I knew what was coming. It is so hard to describe the emotion this place gives you. If Disney could bottle it up and sell it well… but seriously if you are planning your first holiday there, believe me when you see the castle for that very first time, you will be in total awe.
The words I uttered when leaving, we have to come back!!



Nick DH 36
He is the quiet one, who just goes with the flow; he does anything to make me happy, altogether now.... AAAAWWWW He is the main wage earner in the house when his health is good so keeping him well so he can work is very important make this dream a reality is one of my main priorities. On our last trip he sort of just took it all in. Before the last holiday he was most looking forward to Epcot, and it disappointed him a little. He had already been to Disneyland California when he was little, but it was his first time to Disney World last year. So now I have him hooked as well. Isn’t it great when you can do that?



Bethany DD 16
Beth has changed a little since the planning stage of our first trip, she is now more balanced and is lovely girl who listens to the things we say a little more than she used to. She enjoyed her last visit, and I enjoyed her company when she wasn’t giving me whiplash with her moods and also she can’t wait to go back. Her favourite park is Magic Kingdom.



Brandan DS 14
Well our quiet boy is growing up. When we first started planning he didnt want to come, but the past few months, he has changed his mind, and cannot wait. His favourite park is Magic Kingdom, and favourite attraction is Splash Mountain.



Charlotte DD 9
She is our little missy, don’t be fooled with those eyes. She is the most loving little girl you will meet, and cannot wait to go again. Her nana was explaining about the New Year, and Charlotte she was not bothered about 2011 because we won’t be going back to Florida to 2012…lol Her favourite park is Epcot, and favourite attraction is Mission space.



Max DS 7
He is the baby of the family, and also the loudest. He surprised me on our last holiday, as he appeared to love it more than anyone else, and was in total awe of just about everything. Max’s favourite park is also Magic Kingdom and alike Brandan, Splash Mountain is what he goes on about all the while.



Coming up .... PART 2 - BACKGROUND INFO
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:08 AM   #2
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:34 AM   #3
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I'm in 3 weeks at WDW...I am so jealous!!!
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:50 AM   #4
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[B]
]Part 2 - Background information

Hello again, here again to give you a little info our family and holidays. This will be our second visit to Disneyworld. Our first time was in November 2010, and didn't disappoint. We knew the moment we stepped into the USA, we would want to come back as soon as possible. For us, nothing else compared!!



Beach holidays, we find boring, and as much as we love camping with the good old tents, when you live in the UK, well the weather cannot be relied on. So if it means we have save for 2 to 3 years at a time, then that is what we will do.

Our first holiday was for 14 nights, and was great but we wanted to be there longer. In the UK we are lucky enough to be able to travel for 2-3 weeks at a time.

This will probably we our last family holiday as a family of 6, if we do plan another trip, if won't be before 2015, and by then Beth will be 19, and funding her own adventures.

My favourite Disney films, well you should realise those Tangled makes me cry, and the scene with lanterns reminds me of wishes, and chokes me up every time. Up is so heart warming, it makes me smile, and shed tears too. A perfect Sunday afternoon is snuggling up on the sofa, watching them.

Hope to see you here again soon!!

Coming soon - More introductions
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:54 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommys3 View Post
I'm in 3 weeks at WDW...I am so jealous!!!
Welcome on board Helen

I know we are very lucky

Thank you for reading along!!
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Old 07-26-2012, 10:47 AM   #6
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Part 3 - More introductions

Hi there, during our 3 week holiday we are planning a few celebrations which will bring more family and friends into our holiday. 6 people in total!!

Maurice - SFIL
Maurice is joining us for 5 days before jetting down to the Florida keys for a further 9 days. We torment him all the time calling him Winnie the Pooh It will be his first experience of Disney!! He does not know what all the fuss is about



Mary - MIL
Wife of Maurice, and Nick's Mum. She is very much looking forward to spending 5 days in Disneyworld with the children, and is now regretting not booking for longer. Her first time in Disney world, but has visited Disneyland before.



Peter - FIL
Nick's Dad, he will be spending a full week following us around, and enjoying the fun that Disney brings. He isn't too excited yet, but hoping our none stop chatting will soon get him excited, that or he's cancelled After his week with us, he will be flying over to California to spend 3 weeks with his Brother, and then a further 3 weeks in Australia



Jean - Friend
Jean is travelling out with us for our first 14 days, and will be spending a little time with us all. Her Favourite park is Epcot. This will be her 4th visit!!



Phil
Wife of Jean, happy go lucky man who enjoys doing as he is told be Jean I think his favorite park is also Epcot and is looking forward to the food



Rhys 17
Son of Jean & Phil, and his 4th visit. He loves theme parks and Florida is no exception. He is looking forward to spending time with my children.


Coming up - Part 4 - When and where
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:20 AM   #7
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How fun...the more the merrier And your children are beautiful!
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:20 AM   #8
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Part 4 - When & where


Hello everyone, so my initial planning started way back in Jan 2011. we began by checking out prices for August 2012, but based on August 2011, well I was shocked with Virgin’s prices as you will see below. I put my dates in for 9th Aug for 3 weeks, staying at OKW with the free DDP. Well I had an amount in my mind and when it went over, I left it without finishing. I was not sure what prices were actually going to be for 2012, but my guess was, book early!! If we were booking right now for 2011, we wouldn’t be going with Virgin… for a package that is.

Fly drive prices with Virgin were also staggering, and when I checked these prices back in July they were just over Ģ3000 less. So I am guessing it is best to book early for flydrives also.

The reason I was looking at Virgin is that we had an Ģ810 deposit with them which we had until 9th March to book our next holiday with them. I was also hoping the new dates were released by then. Virgin assured me they would give me an extension taking it till July 2011 if the prices aren’t available. We were also going to use up some miles, so hopefully the price will be a bit lower.

So with those prices I checked out Expedia, and even those look expensive.. A little later in the week, we decided to Ring virgin, and get a quote from them for another date, 28th March 2012 for 3 weeks. This date was sort of in the picture because both Max and Charlotte would both celebrate their Birthdays during the holiday which would be lovely. Now this would be a Tuscan Hills villa, car hire and flights and tickets, and the price I was quoted was reasonable, so something to keep in mind.

So with those prices, I was not sure if we would actually stretch to 3 weeks after all. Especially in August.

Fast forward to April 2011 and we eventually booked up with Virgin Holidays, departing on 6th October 2012 until 27th October 2012. All very happy, to let the planning begin!!


Accomodation

Back in Jan 2011 we hadn't looked at prices individually, but we had different options for a family of 6.

Virgin villa

OKW

Saratoga Springs

Disney’s All Stars Music

Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort

After pricing up lots of different options, we eventually choose Disney's Old Key West resort. We also secured the Disney dining plan, which we later upgraded to the DxDDP.


]
Coming up - Part 5- Dreams
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:24 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommys3 View Post
How fun...the more the merrier And your children are beautiful!
Fun, but stressful planning for them all Aww thank you, what a lovely thing for you to say xx
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Old 07-26-2012, 12:07 PM   #10
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Part 5 - A dream


So I decided back in April 2011 that i was going to have a theme each week/month which obviously had to be based on DISNEY of course.. So this week just had to be Cinderella. Why?? Why Not?? Well my title says it all, and was it not the beautiful Cinderella that sang….



‘A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you're fast asleep
In dreams you lose your heartaches
Whatever you wish for, you keep
Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling thru
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
the dream that you wish will come true’


Dreams, we all have dreams do we not? If we didn’t, well I don’t want to imagine not having dreams.

So my dreams for this holiday were.....

To go for 3 weeks - My plan was to spend a minimum of 3 weeks in the most magical place on earth. Why 3 weeks? Well when we went for just 2 weeks last time, we struggled with tiredness, and spreading it out, would make it more enjoyable for us all.... We have achieved this!!

In the school holidays – This is the best time for us. Beth was going be doing here GCSE’s in 2012. If we were to go at Easter, her mind wouldn’t be on studying, eermm Missy why on earth not? so it had to be out. Christmas was the only time that we could go for 3 weeks, but still, the children needed at least a week off school. So the decision has been made for the summer holidays… 7th – 28th August HOPEFULLY. However as you know from my previous instalment, our dates in the end turned out to be October.

All 6 of us together – This was a dream because, Brandan was not sure if he was coming with us. I wouldn't be able to bear that, and the holiday wouldn’t be complete without him. back in 2011, one minute he was coming, the next he’s was not. The reason for him being the way he was, back in 2010, he was quite poorly just before we were due to board the aircraft and it resulted us not being able to come home for another 24 hours. I think this and he was a little home sick. All is good now, and he is looking forward to visiting once again.



OKW on the Free DDP – Well I was a little biased here, as we spent 2 weeks here during November 2010. Wow Wow Wow, this is all I can say, It was the most beautiful relaxing place I have ever stayed, and would love to go back. Free DDP would be the icing on the cake. As for it been rowdy when the free dining plan was on, it wasn’t when I was there, or maybe we didn’t notice as we may be the rowdy ones…lol no I don’t think so either… Secured the DXDDP

Direct flights – I was definitely dreaming here…. August, for 6??? It was going to be expensive… enough said…I WANT CHEAP FLIGHTS.COM

No stress – My life is NOT stress-free, IS ANYONE’S? It is full of ups and downs… nah, maybe this one shouldn’t be in here.

To lose all my excess weight!!! yes I know it was difficult, but the weight is shifting slowly. Now I know I would be dreaming to be 9 stones, but hey if I was dreaming why not have the impossible. Arr but it is impossible?? errrmm yes a little!! did shift 2 stones though

For Nick to manage his health a little better, we struggle every day, just want his medication to work, and be happy and enjoy the build-up.

Renew our Wedding vows – There had not been any mention of this little one until May 2011. We had a very basic wedding 9 years ago. It was my first time, and expected the dress, and everything, well I didn’t get any of it… altogether now AWWW So boo hiss and all hate mail to Nick, only messing. So my dream would be to renew in Disney. Maybe some other family members may come to celebrate with us… Watch this space

To see parts of Florida we haven’t seen before – Discovery Cove, Busch Gardens, Clearwater Beach. Let's see!!

Last dream as to be.. A LOTTERY WIN!! I can dream

So Disney fans, Cinderella, you have got to love her, she has it all. Beauty, prince charming, a castle to name few..

Cinderella, she has Prince Charming, and we all want one of those don’t we, well I have one. He may not be your idea of Prince Charming, but he is mine. Here’s the bucket…. Here is my Prince Charming, if you have a prince charming why not upload your version, I know they come in a all shapes and sizes



The Glass slipper, well I have shoes. What can I say I am a woman. One thing is, you only need 2 pairs each.. Remember that Sarah..

The Castle, we all love Cinderella’s castle, I cried so many times last time, and it got me in that pit of the stomach. The first time I saw it I felt pure emotion. It was strange, it is only a structure, but to me was everything I have ever dreamt of.


Come back for Part 6 - Transport options
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Old 07-26-2012, 12:56 PM   #11
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Part 6 - Transport options


We had another theme which was requested by my DS Max and was Disney’s Cars. It then got me wondering about what else goes with ‘Cars’, so my thinking was the transport element of the holiday.

I did few designs, for t-shirts for Max and Charlotte which incorporates Cars. Need to find these in my files, and will attach later.

For the different transports throughout our holiday we have to get to the airport and we have 3 options-

National Express – This would be from the local bus station, stopping at several stops along the way. We did this option in 2010, but it is a long journey, 4 hours and 35 minutes.



Train – East Midlands trains would be from Leicester to St Pancras, and then
change train to Gatwick, this is a 2 hr ish journey. Now this is a quicker journey, but if I remember there are a lot of stairs between platforms, and not a lot of space for suitcases….



Car, it is the return that worries, us, plus we wouldn't all fit in the car with our luggage, so this is out!!

Taxi - Would be beneficial for us, and even though it is the most expensive, it became the most obvious one for us to use.

http://www.fleetdirectory.co.uk/flee...ct-concept.jpg
Flights

So as you are aware we are travelling with Virgin Atlantic, and we are hoping to be one one of there refurbished 747's here is hoping anyway.



Transport in the USA

Car – Nope, cannot do this option, as Nick’s new licence if he has it by then, wont have been issued long enough.

Magical express/Disney transport - I have booked ME, and hoping to use it but our booking came with free transfers with Virgin, which apparently use ME transport anyway.



Limo Hire – Would have liked to have surprised everyone with this option to get to our accommodation. However, it would have been too expensive as we would need a van too to transport luggage.



When we are in the Disney and staying at OKW, we will use Disney transport, and have booked Florida Magical Tours for a couple of excursions too, who are very good to deal with.



Thank you for reading along all

Coming next..... Part 7 Food options
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:32 PM   #12
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Three weeks sound amazing! your family is lovely! I can't wait to read your trip report.
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Old 07-27-2012, 04:37 AM   #13
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Three weeks sound amazing! your family is lovely! I can't wait to read your trip report.
to my pre trip, and thank you for your kind comment on my family. xx
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Old 07-27-2012, 05:03 AM   #14
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Part 7 - Food options


Hello again, so back to Feb 2011, and we started thinking about what we were going to eat, one of our most important parts of our holiday

We decided to do another themed week, and this time we decided to go with Ratatouille.




Firstly, having never actually watched the film I ordered it from Amazon, and it arrived quickly allowing us to all watch it together, and we thought it was a fab film.

We had a go at making ratatouille together for dinner, and none of us enjoyed it, it does not look too appetising either.




I put the children some activity books together during the week, which Max and Charlotte did whist they watched the film.





So I had been thinking a lot about food on holiday, and i had been trying to work out whether we wanted to do the standard or deluxe dining plan. We did enjoy the signatures, and would most likely eat mainly those for evening meal. This is what I have came up with as a rough plan for a 21 day holiday.

Signatures
CRT – Did dinner here last time and loved it. A lot of people don’t rate it at all, but as a family we thought it was magical.
Le Cellier- We had lunch here last time, and though it was suberb, filet to die for.
Jiko – This will be our first time
Hollywood Brown Derby – Can’t wait, one of our favourites last time.
Yachtsman Steakhouse – Another super one, again can’t wait.
Cali grill – It has to be on the list, and will eat here at the start of the holiday and also our last night.
Flying fish – Another new one for us, but so many good reports, another newbie.
Narcoossee’s – One of last times, and again looking forward to this one.
Citricos – New to us, was supposed to go last year, but it was cancelled at the last minute.

Dinner Shows
Spirit of aloha dinner show
Hoop Dee Do
Mickey’s Backyard BBQ – All new to us, never done any of them, but think the children will have a nice time.

1TS dinners/Lunches
Tonys – Did last time, and enjoyed
Coral Reef – Again loved this one.
Raglan Road - Fantastic
Captains Grill – Was cancelled due to tiredness on holiday, but really would like this in the mix.
Teppan Edo – A new one, but it looks fun.
Grand Floridian Café – Loved it here.

Breakfasts
Cape May café – Enjoyed it here
Tusker House – Fab food, and atmosphere.
Olivia’s – our local, and will eat here a few times as we did last time.
Chef mickeys – Did dinner here last time, didn’t like it, but going to try it for Breakfast.
Ohana’s – loved it here.
Boma – beautiful flavours.
1900 Park Fare – Can’t wait
Crystal Palace – Another lovely one.
Earl of Sandwich – You just have to.
Starring Rolls – Butterfinger cupcake….
CRT – Didn’t do a Breakfast, but with the DDDP, may as well

Wow!! that’s list, but to me the food is just a big part of the holiday as everything else is.

Join me for part 8 where I will show our choices
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Old 07-27-2012, 05:50 AM   #15
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Wow!!! 3 weeks. I am so jealous. Joining in.
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