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Old 08-20-2012, 01:19 PM   #16
hurleysweety
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Cruise is paid for in full! Just had to share!

Coming up with our preliminary schedule today. Should be posting that soon!
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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:21 PM   #17
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Online Cruise Check-in DONE!

So I've never cruised before so I spend most days worrying about that part of our trip. I figure, you can throw me in WDW and I'll figure things out one way or another. I got my Tour Guide Mike green and red days (and maybe an ADR or two), so I'm all set.

WARNING: Whine-y, complain-y complaints ahead! But when it comes to the cruise, I get worried. What do I do if this happens? What do I pack? What FE gifts should I make/bring? What FE should I get for our door? Should I book an excursion? Is it worth it? Will I ever stop finding more ways to spend money on this trip?? (stupid rant over...haha)

But good news! Our 75 day window opened up last night at midnight! I first checked adult dining, and it confirmed what I suspected. Remy and Palo aren't available during our cruise - they are all sold out except for the first night. And on the first night, I want to meet our server and table mates and experience the ship. I don't want to spend 3 hours eating while everyone else gets to know each other. I suspect everyone else feels the same way and that is why those reservation slots are available. But believe me, I will most definitely be checking as we approach sailing date, and on the ship as well. I really want to do Palo Brunch. But seeing as we have one chance to do it, on our at sea day, the chances are slim. If we have to do dinner instead, I will just have to live with that.

The cabanas were all sold out for our trip. Good thing, too, I don't think I can take making anymore decisions. I'm hoping that this trip will kinda be a trial run before we go with a bigger group, or our own family someday in the future. We'll see what is important to us, what is worth spending extra $$, IMO, and what we can live without. Right now, its an endless list of choices. Yikes!

I am looking forward to one thing, we got a 11am port arrival time. I've learned that this doesn't mean much, as you should be more concerned about your boarding time. But I feel like having a paper that says I can be there at 11 is pretty cool. After all, we'll only be sleeping an hour away in WDW. I'll be there at 9am if Mickey would allow it!

We probably fit into that category of people who want to be the first ones on the ship. Granted, we are not Lou Mongello or any of his important peeps, concierge, or castaway club members. But when they get to us regular folks, we want to be the first, albeit, crazy, people there saying "Pick me, Pick me!", take that photo with captain Mickey, have our name announced on the ship (which they'll probably screw up), and then I'll act like a five year old, bounce up and down and giggle. Cuz I'm sure it will all happen like that (I can hope for it, right?!)
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:40 PM   #18
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Great PTR! I am enjoyong it. We are doing a land/sea too and it will be our 1st cruise!!!!
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Old 08-21-2012, 01:16 PM   #19
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Following along! I'll live vicariously through your November fun until I can have my own!
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Old 08-21-2012, 02:23 PM   #20
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Ok maybe a stupid question, but I literally don't know anything about DCL. You can make adult meal reservations 75 days in advance? But if everyone's in the same boat (pun intended), how did other people book the places before you? Anyway, I hope something opens up for you guys.
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Old 08-21-2012, 03:01 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weswife View Post


Great PTR! I am enjoyong it. We are doing a land/sea too and it will be our 1st cruise!!!!
Welcome!!! Thanks for reading!

Are you doing a PTR as well? Which cruise itinerary are you doing?


Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsBearcat View Post
Following along! I'll live vicariously through your November fun until I can have my own!
Welcome and thanks for following along! I love new readers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DLR29 View Post
Ok maybe a stupid question, but I literally don't know anything about DCL. You can make adult meal reservations 75 days in advance? But if everyone's in the same boat (pun intended), how did other people book the places before you? Anyway, I hope something opens up for you guys.
Hey! Ok, so if you are a platinum castaway member or a concierge guest, you can book 180 days in advance, the next is gold at 120, then silver at 90, and then all us regular people (haha) in cat 4-12. And with a 4 day cruise, we only have one day available for Palo brunch (since they only do it when you are at sea). If we had a seven day cruise, we'd have three days worth of brunches to choose from. Definitely an advantage with the longer cruise!

Wow, look at me knowing stuff about DCL! I guess my two weeks perusing the DCL forum on here has at least taught me something!

Ok, back to work!
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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:48 AM   #22
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If I EVER get to go on a cruise, I know who to ask for info! YEA for the cruise being paid in FULL!! Hoping there aren't any more scorpions so you can have wonderful, sweet sleep!
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:02 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blessedmom4 View Post
If I EVER get to go on a cruise, I know who to ask for info! YEA for the cruise being paid in FULL!! Hoping there aren't any more scorpions so you can have wonderful, sweet sleep!
Isn't it strange how fast we learn something we're excited about??!

And thanks for your excitement about the cruise being paid for! This is the first trip that we have deposits, and balances and such since we have always stayed on my in-laws time share or just had a room only for a couple nights and paid for it up front. Not used to these deadlines!!

We haven't found one scorpion, yet. I've been searching every night with my handy dandy UV flashlight! My sister said she has friends who put their bed posts in buckets, and put the dust stuff in the buckets so anything will just crawl in there and die pretty much. So we're going to try that so that we can sleep peacefully, even if it means having a funny looking bed!
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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:14 PM   #24
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Our Schedule

Oct 31
Arrive in ORLANDO!!
Grab our rental car
Check into CBR
Eat somewhere (probably a TS at a resort)

Nov 1
EPCOT for food and wine!
Might just do that all day??? In that case, you might have to roll me out of the park that night... [read -not from drinking, but eating!]

Nov 2
MK Morning(there is a party here tonight, the last MNSSHP, so we are hoping that people will skip out since its only open til 7 OoooOR that people going to the party won't come in the morning...silly people!)
?? Night

Nov 3
Hollywood Studios Morning
Epcot Night (are we crazy people going to food & wine on a Saturday night!?)

Nov 4
Check out of CBR
Use our last QS at Pepper Market for breakfast
Drive to Port Canaverl
See DREAM ship and freak out, try my best to not completely embarrass my DH
Drop car off at parking place, take shuttle to terminal
EMBARKATION & Sail Away Party!!

Nov 5
Nassau, Bahamas

Nov 6
Castaway Cay - serenity bay, here we come!

Nov 7
Day at Sea - relax and eat and relax and eat some more!
PIRATE PARTY NIGHT!

Nov 8
Disembarkation Day
Take shuttle to parking place
Drive to WDW to TBD hotel and check in
Epcot for Food & Wine
MK for night

Nov 9
Epcot Morning
Resort Hop afternoon to see all the beautiful decorations!
HS night for OSBOURNE LIGHTS!!! (hoping they are up - have only been reading about them for years and extended the trip just to see Christmas decor)
MK MVMCP is on this night - probably won't get tickets because of the unjustified $$ for us, IMO, but hoping it draws away crowds from other parks??

Nov 10
Bright and early rise&shine for departure at something like 8am - yikes!
Return home, promptly check disboards and start TR!
Pretend very very hard not to be sad.
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(me)... (DH)... (baby DD)... (Puppy Otis) --- "Your grace is enough for me" ---
Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston

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Old 08-24-2012, 06:06 PM   #25
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So we have 68 Days until our Trip Begins!!!

And we've made some decisions about things too! First off, we are getting trip insurance for the entire trip. We have never purchased trip insurance before, but since it is highly recommended with a cruise, we are going to pay the price for it now and hopefully we won't be using it. The thing that matters most to me is the medical coverage should anything go wrong on the cruise. But since it isn't that much more to add our entire trip in there, we decided to do that. I don't mind paying for that kind of peace of mind. I can be rather clumsy and absent-minded sometimes - especially when focused on less important matters, like which food and wine booth I want to visit first.

Next, we have decided not to book any special events for food and wine. We had a great time last year and didn't have anything extra booked. One day, we'll take a F&W specific trip, plan it months in advance so we can stay at BCV, and attend party for the senses and over indulge in all that fun. For now, we'll eat at the booths, attend the free festivities (HGTV, free seminars in the festival center, eat to the beat concerts) and enjoy those extra $$ in our wallet.

Lastly, we are still deciding on our ADRs. My main dilemma has to do with our arrival night and departure morning. We get in at 6pm on Halloween. We'll rent a car so we'll be at the resort by 7:30pm at the latest, making a 8:15-8:30 ADR completely doable. Also, it will be around 5:15-5:30 our time, so we'll be ready to eat. So we could use the TS credit on this night and use our extra QS credit on departure morning (probably at Pepper Market since it will not be a park day and we figure we'll get a great bang for our buck there).

However, DH has suggested many times that we eat a QS that first night, and double up a TS one night and eat at a signature restaurant. I would love to eat at Narcosees!! We could easily spend $130 there. Not sure if its the best use of our credits, though. Then on Sunday morning, we will just grab something light and indulge our hungry stomachs at Cabanas after we board!

Thats all for now - oh, but I must add, I finally saw Hunger Games last night! I've been wanting to see it since I read the book (after it came out). Ever since I (reluctantly at the time!)saw the first Harry Potter (at the age of 16 or 17...without much knowledge of the series at all), I have decided to always read the book before the movie. I then proceeded to read each of the harry potter books, and then watch the movie up until book 5 or 6, then I got to see the last movie, both parts in theaters like the total geek that I am. Perfect.

When I saw the preview for the Hunger Games movie, it looked kinda weird. Then it came out, people raved and I jumped on the bandwagon (yes, I'm a trendy book reader...except for 50 shades...ew). So I'm almost done with the last book, and here I am four months later and I finally get to see it. It was great - I wish it was longer but I know including every detail is hard. Can't wait til the next one!

Warning: total n00b picture below:

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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:25 PM   #26
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Can you believe it? I'm gonna learn to sew!

Now I know many of you are thinking - BORING! But I think it is a great and frugal skill to have. I don't know how many times I have bought something and thought, I could have totally made that - especially when I'm buying patterned pillow covers, basic skirts, open cardigans, etc. Plus, I'm hoping I can figure out how to make a fish extender!!!

I'm currently researching and shopping for a sewing machine. I really want something awesome that will last me more than a couple years, but also something that won't put a dent in my wallet - read, I would love one for under $100. I've asked the disboutiquers for their help - so we'll see!

On another note, I popped into Joann Fabrics today and stumbled upon their 60% off section that had all their leftover college/back-to-school products. I found a "beach safe" and almost freaked out. I've kinda been looking for one, but didn't really know where to look. This one is a name brand, GoVault. Here is a stock photo:



It's a great way to store your things while you're on the beach. Since its just DH and I, we figure it would be peace of mind while we're playing in the ocean or renting a water trike or snorkeling or whatever. I sound like a spokesperson for it! My total price was $12! Score.

Ok, time for dinner. I'm making italian chicken that was once a freezer meal, meaning I dumped a bunch of ingredients in a freezer bag and then pulled it out this afternoon. I dumped it into my covered baker (LOVE pampered chef) and into the oven with diced red potatoes and then bam, delicious dinner is served! DH says it smells amazing. We'll see how it tastes now...haha. Bye all!
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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-27-2012, 03:06 AM   #27
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I am SOOO excited you are going to learn to sew!!! One of these days...
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Old 08-28-2012, 12:31 AM   #28
hurleysweety
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Quote:
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I am SOOO excited you are going to learn to sew!!! One of these days...
Thanks! I know I can do it and I'll enjoy it. I just hope I make it past the frustrating part of learning and get to the fun part of creating!
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Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:04 AM   #29
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Passports and Poopy Discounts

We got our passports!!!

If I count correctly, it took less than three weeks. I am so excited!

As many of you know, the room only discount for Fall came out today. And like my pity party of a title says, they were poopy.

I was really hoping for a great rate - however I'm pretty sure that doesn't happen for any resorts during food and wine. At first, I was so disappointed that I considered staying off-site. I don't have a problem with that - its just never made sense $$ before to do it that way since we rent a car. So if you only save $20-30/night, but then maybe have a hidden resort fee, or have to pay for parking at the resort, well it adds up, and fast. I spent a couple hours doing some research (probably more than needed, but thats why I'm on a forum writing a PTR - right? ) I found some really nice hotels - hotels I didn't know existed and seem like a hidden gem. There is a villa that has four bedrooms and sleeps 14 people!! Oh, and its right next to CBR. Its a timeshare place, but apparently there are a variety of ways to stay there - Wyndham Bonnet Creek. I'm hoping we have a chance to drive by and check it out as a villa that sleeps 14 sounds like a super fun vacation with family and friends. But anyway, after checking all these rates, I realized that WDW might actually be the cheaper option.

So instead of my dream of staying at beach club, yacht club, poly or contemporary (in that order, for food and wine) and saving 30% - has turned into a stay at all star sports, saving 15%. Not complaining at all here - just got my expectations outta whack again. I don't mean to sound ungrateful at all! Please don't take it that way - I just really shouldn't read all the rumors on the discount codes thread until I know they are true and cover my dates. I'm also very happy for all those people who are savings lots of $$ on a previously booked trip. What a fun day to learn that kind of news! And in the end, I gotta remember - we all get to go to Disney, heck, we all get to go on vacation. And when you look at it like that, how can you not sit back and smile?

I feel like everything is coming together now. It always takes us so long to get the itinerary just right. Adding days here and there. I don't think we've ever taken a vacation that hasn't had a split stay. And so far, its worked out okay. On our last trip we stayed at three different resorts - so maybe that's our tradition - gee I hope not. LOL :

Goodnight, everyone!
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(me)... (DH)... (baby DD)... (Puppy Otis) --- "Your grace is enough for me" ---
Past Trips: WDW: Feb 1997 BWI, June 2008 *Honeymoon!*, May 2010 OKW & POR *2-year anniversary*, May 2011 OKW/BWV *3-year anniversary*, October 2011 VWL & POP DLR: 1994, Thanksgiving 2003 Portofino Suites, Oct. 2004, Oct. 2005, Nov. 2006 Carousel Inn, May 2007 Fairfield Inn, May 2009 DH Bday Trip Marriott Suites Anaheim, May 2009 *1-year anniversary*, GCH Suite, June 2009 Worldmark, Sept 2009 PPH, December 2009 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, April 2010 Holiday Inn Anaheim Resort, January 2011 Staybridge, September 2011 Red Lion, June 2012 Hilton Anaheim *4-year anniversary (celebrated late), Oct 2012 Ayres Anaheim, May 2013 GCH *5-year anniversary*, Sept 2013 Red Lion, Nov 2013 (1 Day Trip) Red Lion, Dec 2013 *Club 33* Castle Inn DCL:October 2013 - HalloWonder (Halloween) Cruise - Wonder 7 Night Bahamas from Galveston
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Old 08-28-2012, 12:44 PM   #30
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Bummer about the discounts but I'm glad you have a good attitude about it. I think for my WDW trip in Jan, my friends and I are looking to stay at the ASSp (we're cheap college kids), so I'll be looking for a mini review. :thumpsup2
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