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Old 09-12-2012, 01:40 PM   #76
Gina-Gina-Bo-Bina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bankr63 View Post
Does anyone else see a striking resemblance between Gina's Guy and Gina's Girl?? Same smile, and just a touch of grey? I'm just sayin....
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-12-2012, 03:01 PM   #77
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Sunday, September 2.

Just like that, it was over.
We must have cross posted, because my response to this was, "What mean you, 'over'? What happened to the history?" Then I read through the whole post thinking you'd be visiting something historic in New York or Canada before the light dawned. I'm slow.

Titanic Experience, hm? That wasn't either of the ones I was thinking. I kind of want to do that, but we've done two different touring Museum Exhibits on the Titanic and I just can't justify the cost when ninety-some percent of the thing is repeat for us. *sigh*

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This sweetie was waiting for us by the door:



Man, had I missed my girl.
A tortie, hmmm? Our one tortoiseshell would give us just that look when we got back -- not grumpy mad (my mom had a Tonkinese who alternately sulked and complained for days when they got back from a trip), but a definite air of "It's about time you got back." Torties are highly opinionated but generous sweethearts, in my experience.

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So, the countdown is on.....December 21st is the last day of school before the holiday break, December 22nd we leave for Buffalo (a new airport this time....wish us luck!), and December 23rd we should have our feet on Florida soil by 10:33 am barring any flight delays.
You could always start a pretrip report (hint hint!). We're going in January and I'm doing one, although so far it's as much trip reports on past trips as planning.

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I am happy to meet someone else who enjoys SeaWorld as much as we do . I know I am definitely an odd-man-out on that one here on the boards!!
I'm pretty much odd-man-out at home with my love of WDW. My middle daughter likes Disney, but when it comes to crunch time, she votes SeaWorld. I like SeaWorld a lot, but I really want to do the Disney parks, and we haven't yet. I keep telling the kids that they ARE going to the parks next time, whether they want to or not. We've done two trips doing their stuff - this trip is mine. Hubby thinks the kids who think they won't like Disney will convert once we get there; have to see how that goes.

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Originally Posted by bankr63 View Post
Does anyone else see a striking resemblance between Gina's Guy and Gina's Girl?? Same smile, and just a touch of grey? I'm just sayin....


It's that possessive air they have in common, I think. In some pictures I take, hubby has the same loving/possessive expression, which he never shows in pics taken by other people.
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Old 09-12-2012, 05:11 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by shalom View Post
A tortie, hmmm? Our one tortoiseshell would give us just that look when we got back -- not grumpy mad (my mom had a Tonkinese who alternately sulked and complained for days when they got back from a trip), but a definite air of "It's about time you got back." Torties are highly opinionated but generous sweethearts, in my experience.



You could always start a pretrip report (hint hint!). We're going in January and I'm doing one, although so far it's as much trip reports on past trips as planning.
Oh, she was grumpy mad alright. She gave us a piece of her mind for three days straight....nice and loud, I may add ....between begging for lovin' and scratches under the chin. She had great care while we were away (our awesome next door neighbours come daily during our trips to clean out her litter box, refresh her food, give her a healthy dose of Temptations, and provide a little physical interaction) but apparently there's no substitute for Mom. She is a sweetheart, though.....my baby (can I still call her that when she's 14 years old?), and definitely the princess of the house!

I had thought of doing a pre-trip report, just to pass the time, but I am not sure what to talk about for the next three and a half months. LOL, all the hard work is done...the plans are set, the trip is even paid for...which is why I am glad I will have some scrappin' to do once my Shutterfly order arrives.
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-12-2012, 08:23 PM   #79
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Well, I am so sad your trip report is over. The Titanic exhibit is cool, but I do question the big metal hull they have as the exhibit in Las Vegas has the exact same piece of metal. That made me suspicious. But I really liked Titanic also and it was a somber interesting tour.

My DDs are grade 11 and grade 8 so they will love DC. Yes, we will do the swim with Dolphins. Guessing that with just one trip to DC and 2 to Aquatica isn't worth the annual pass?

Marriott Grande Vista is not a Seaworld partner sadly. But you can get amazing deals on 2 bedroom units on timeshare rental sites! And the rooms are gorgeous - id furnish my home with their decor!

You only have 3 months to wait! Must be nice. I still have 6 months!! Can't wait to hear about your next adventure. Thanks again for a speedy trip report with tons of pictures.
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Old 09-12-2012, 09:06 PM   #80
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Trip Report

I really enjoyed your trip report....and looking forward to the next one!

My family and I will also be in Orlando in December....sooooo excited to go back
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Old 09-13-2012, 06:24 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by mtmbyck View Post
Well, I am so sad your trip report is over. The Titanic exhibit is cool, but I do question the big metal hull they have as the exhibit in Las Vegas has the exact same piece of metal. That made me suspicious. But I really liked Titanic also and it was a somber interesting tour.

My DDs are grade 11 and grade 8 so they will love DC. Yes, we will do the swim with Dolphins. Guessing that with just one trip to DC and 2 to Aquatica isn't worth the annual pass?

Marriott Grande Vista is not a Seaworld partner sadly. But you can get amazing deals on 2 bedroom units on timeshare rental sites! And the rooms are gorgeous - id furnish my home with their decor!

You only have 3 months to wait! Must be nice. I still have 6 months!! Can't wait to hear about your next adventure. Thanks again for a speedy trip report with tons of pictures.
Thank you!!!

I am a big fan of the annual passes.....ours for Aquatica really paid for itself. With the Discovery Cove discount (saved $90 pp x 3 = $270), two days of free parking ($14 x 2 = $28), the cabana discounts (maybe $15?) and all the food discounts (probably at least another $10) ours sure equalled its vale a couple of times over.

I must remember to put the Grande Vista on my list of possibilities a future trip. DH is already asking me to "keep an eye open" for next summer....whooda thunk it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KaraLyn View Post
I really enjoyed your trip report....and looking forward to the next one!

My family and I will also be in Orlando in December....sooooo excited to go back
Thanks so much!

So you are going in December too! Where are you staying? Nice to have someone "counting down" with me!
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-13-2012, 11:06 AM   #82
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So....just for fun, after each trip we always do a cost summary and include it in our scrapbook (it get's its own special page). Not only does it give us an immediate accounting of what we spent on the trip (and we try to include EVERYTHING in this list, any expense from the time we walk out the door until the time we come home) but it helps us budget for future trips and its fun to look back on years later ("remember when we stayed at the __________? And it only cost us ___________?").

I figure it will be real source of amusement for Jake's children someday when they look back on our 2009 Disney trip and they see we flew our family round trip from Toronto for just over $1000.

With that preamble, here's what the numbers came in as for this getaway:

 Syracuse Park & Fly Hotel: $ 161.92
 Trip Insurance: $ 61.13 (cancellation, interruption and emergency medical)
 Roundtrip, direct flights (Jetblue): $ 889.06
 Car rental (full size, Alamo): $ 116.00
 Fuel to and from Syracuse: $ FREE (via gift card from credit card points)
 Fuel for rental car: $ 55.29
 Westgate Lakes Accommodations: $ 503.83
 Food, tips and misc. supplies: $ 871.00
 Outta Control Dinner Show: $ 77.19
 Discovery Cove: $ 470.64 (incl. admission, cabana, and premium package inclusions)
 Aquatica: $ 394.17 (incl. one annual pass, two 2012 weekday passes, 2 cabana rentals)
 Groupons: $ 44.91 (Volcano Island Mini Golf and Kissimmee Go Karts package)
 Titanic Experience: $ 60.00
 Gift card for the Cat Sitter $ FREE (via gift card from credit card points)

GRAND TOTAL: $ 3705.14

For our 9 days, 8 nights away from home, this breaks down to $137.23 per person, per day.

All the above numbers include all taxes, any bank conversion fees from USD to Canadian funds, and all exchange fees as well .

The food total takes in all health and beauty aids purchased at Walmart, including laundry supplies, shampoo and conditioner, hairspray, etc. that we didn't want to pack.

The only money spent that is not included in the above are souvenirs and clothing purchased at the various shopping venues we frequented. Not including the family portrait session (where we purchased the CD of 34 images plus a selection of prints, as well as a studio membership for one year), Steve and I spent about $350 on clothing and gifts while Jake spent $699. No wonder we needed those two empty suitcases!!!
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-13-2012, 07:37 PM   #83
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Gina, I'm trying to do the math. If I buy 1 annual pass for me, can I get discounts for the whole family? We will only do DC once and Aquatica twice and maybe Seaworld. Trying to figure out if annual pass is worth it.
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Old 09-13-2012, 08:37 PM   #84
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Thank you!!!

I am a big fan of the annual passes.....ours for Aquatica really paid for itself. With the Discovery Cove discount (saved $90 pp x 3 = $270), two days of free parking ($14 x 2 = $28), the cabana discounts (maybe $15?) and all the food discounts (probably at least another $10) ours sure equalled its vale a couple of times over.

I must remember to put the Grande Vista on my list of possibilities a future trip. DH is already asking me to "keep an eye open" for next summer....whooda thunk it?



Thanks so much!

So you are going in December too! Where are you staying? Nice to have someone "counting down" with me!

We actually head down Nov.24th and stay till Dec. 8th. For the past 3 years we've rented a villa from a family who live in the UK...soooo nice to have your own private pool and hot tub to soak in after a long day at the parks
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Old 09-13-2012, 09:34 PM   #85
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Gina, I'm trying to do the math. If I buy 1 annual pass for me, can I get discounts for the whole family? We will only do DC once and Aquatica twice and maybe Seaworld. Trying to figure out if annual pass is worth it.
I think you are better off with the undiscounted DC admission. You are going in March, right?

March Break lists the regular price of the dolphin swim admission as $289 pp (ouch ). The passmember discounted price is $239, so only a $50 savings pp.

With the regular DC admission, you get Aquatica and SeaWorld unlimited for 14 days. That's well worth $50 pp.

An annual pass will run you $119, which will only save you $50 per person (and the cost of the AP will negate your savings on the first two people in your family). Then you would still have to purchase Aquatica and SeaWorld tickets for everyone. You couldn't get two days at Aquatica for that, let alone SW.

The AP *would* save you on parking at Aquatica (less than $30 for two days) and 10% on food, but still not enough to justify the AP.

I hope that makes sense!!
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-13-2012, 09:37 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by KaraLyn View Post
We actually head down Nov.24th and stay till Dec. 8th. For the past 3 years we've rented a villa from a family who live in the UK...soooo nice to have your own private pool and hot tub to soak in after a long day at the parks
Ooooooohhhhhhhh......sounds perfect!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I think if I had my own private hot tub, I might never even go to any of the parks!!!
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-14-2012, 12:26 PM   #87
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.between begging for lovin' and scratches under the chin.
Well, at least she let you apologize! We have a terrific cat sitter, who our outdoor cats adore, but for a long time the indoor cats would avoid her or keep their distance. Sometimes the indoor cats would hide from us when we got back, as well, but as soon as we haul them out and fuzz them up, everything's back to normal.

Now, however, we've got Zelda, who is an aggressive little twit. Zelda scolds us when we get back, but usually just the first night, then we're all pals, but that's because she takes her aggression out on the catsitter.

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I had thought of doing a pre-trip report, just to pass the time, but I am not sure what to talk about for the next three and a half months. LOL, all the hard work is done...
I usually have everything all figured out ahead of time, too, but this trip has just been change after change. Mostly, however, I'm doing trip reports on old trips and posting plans I've already made.

I seem not to have signed up for notifications on your thread; got to think it was a little odd it had gone silent but mostly came back because I kept thinking I'd run across a Philadelphia Toboggan Company carousel somewhere we've been, which kept bugging me -- finally remembered that the carousel at the MK is one! The original carousel was a PTC "Liberty," first installed at Detroit's Palace Garden Park. The paint scheme's been totally changed and they've rearranged things so there are more horses and so that all the horses are jumpers (not to mention they're fiberglass replicas!), but PTC designs anyhow.

The chariot's original, and I wonder if they finally gave Miss Liberty back her red dress when they switched it to Prince Charming's Regal Carousel -- originally they wanted a more feminine look, so at the MK, Miss Liberty was wearing pink , white and blue! Didn't really get to see it when we were there, because middle daughter was flaking out over her missing pin back and all; need to make an effort this January!
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Old 09-14-2012, 01:44 PM   #88
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I usually have everything all figured out ahead of time, too, but this trip has just been change after change. Mostly, however, I'm doing trip reports on old trips and posting plans I've already made.

I seem not to have signed up for notifications on your thread; got to think it was a little odd it had gone silent but mostly came back because I kept thinking I'd run across a Philadelphia Toboggan Company carousel somewhere we've been, which kept bugging me -- finally remembered that the carousel at the MK is one! The original carousel was a PTC "Liberty," first installed at Detroit's Palace Garden Park. The paint scheme's been totally changed and they've rearranged things so there are more horses and so that all the horses are jumpers (not to mention they're fiberglass replicas!), but PTC designs anyhow.

The chariot's original, and I wonder if they finally gave Miss Liberty back her red dress when they switched it to Prince Charming's Regal Carousel -- originally they wanted a more feminine look, so at the MK, Miss Liberty was wearing pink , white and blue! Didn't really get to see it when we were there, because middle daughter was flaking out over her missing pin back and all; need to make an effort this January!
You may have just talked me into doing a PTR after all . It might be a fun way to pass the time!!!

As for the carousel info.....you have an amazing memory . And what a great story!!! Carousels hold a special place in my heart....probably because its what I consider a "thrill ride"........anything "wilder" than that and I'm outta there .
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Gina and her two guys ...conquering awesome Orlando, one offsite attraction at a time!

Jan. 2009....onsite at POR: all 4 Disney Parks
Jan. 2012....offsite on I-Drive: Universal Studios, IOA, SeaWorld, & Discovery Cove
Aug. 2012...Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa: Aquatica, Discovery Cove, and more
Dec. 2012...onsite at SW! Christmas week at SeaWorld, Aquatica, Gatorland, airboats, & holiday fun
**Christmas 2012 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3041415
Aug. 2013....Sheraton Vistana Resort: Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Cocoa Beach & more! **August 2013 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3167818

Aug. 2014.....SVR, SW, DC, AQ, TL, Daytona & MORE! **August 2014 Trip Report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=51863899


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Old 09-14-2012, 03:18 PM   #89
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I am about halfway done reading your TR, and it is awesome to see another area of Orlando! Thanks for sharing. It's also nice to see another Canadian ^)^
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Old 09-14-2012, 07:35 PM   #90
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Hi Gina,

First, I'd like to say thanks for sharing your trip adventures -- and your great family -- with the rest of us. Love the pics, and your candid reviews of all you did.

Second, I'd like to say thanks for focusing on the Other Orlando beyond WDW. So many people travel down and get immediately seduced by the comfortable embrace of Disney that they don't realize what's out there.

I've picked up lots of ideas from your last two trip reports -- ironically, while we were there at the same time in that same WDW embrace. Looks like we have the same vacation pattern.

This Christmas, we will be staying for one night onsite at Universal due to your recommendation. You are very persuasive about the merits of the Express Pass access! We'll blitz the two parks in two days, and then retreat to Marriott's Grande Vista for a week.

From there we were going to tackle WDW for a few days (we have APs) and also try to get in a golf lesson for myself and DD. Now I'm going to add the Outta Control show to the itinerary, because it looks like a blast and I'm sure DD and DH will love it.

I would love to fit in Discovery Cove and Aquatica, but I suspect it'll have to wait another year. I know you did this in December last year, when the weather was relatively decent. But you still wore wetsuits, didn't you?

I'll watch for you at the Florida Mall at the post-Christmas sales!
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2012 Beach Club Villas; Wilderness Lodge; Disney Magic (Eastern); Vero Beach; BLT; Marriott's Grande Vista;
2013 BLT; Disney Fantasy (Eastern); Wilderness Lodge; OKW-BLT; December Marriott's Cypress Harbor;
2014 OKW; Marriott's Lakeshore Reserve; BLT; Wilderness Lodge; Boardwalk; Saratoga Springs; DVC Member Cruise
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