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Old 10-25-2013, 05:57 PM   #1
NMDisneyMom
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OMG! What have I gotten myself into? A First Trip & Double Digit PTR - UPDATE 10/28

Hi everyone!

So this is my first pre-trip report. Actually itís my first initiated thread on the boards at all. Iíve been active on the Cruise and DL threads, but not so much over here. Iíve read many trip reports and have learned a great deal. BUTÖ. Iíve also realized how much I need to know to plan this trip.

First the participants and some background Ö.

Thereís me. Jenn, a single mom by choice, mid-40s. Iím a Principal Business Management Professional (howís that for a title!) for a government contractor. I manage muli-million dollar budgets. Or as I like to say ďa glorified babysitter for a bunch of physicistsĒ. Yes, it just recently dawned on me, I kinda live in a Big Bang Theory world! ☺ But itís mostly a bunch of older scientists. I love planning vacations, especially anything Disney related (itís my stress relief). Iím also a huge NASCAR fan, and travel to Phoenix generally every year for the fall race. I love reading and scrapbooking, even though Iím several trips behind.

My partner in all of these trips is my DD, Hannah. She is nine and has been to Disneyland 6 times and on 4 Disney cruises! All since she turned 2! She loves Disney, and knows that she is lucky to get to go on all of these trips. She loves dancing and swimming, Hello Kitty and just recently, anything LEGO.


Us getting ready to go aboard the Disney Fantasy, March 2013.

Disneyland is like a second home to us. In fact, my DD knows where all of the bathrooms are and thinks she should be allowed to go by herself some days (of course, the answer to that is a big, fat NO!!) We have also taken to cruising like we lived on the water all of our lives (I think it has more to do with the fact that we live in the middle of the desert). I really enjoy how relaxing it is, and how much fun we can have.

I always said I wanted to wait for WDW until she was able to walk the entire trip and also appreciate EPCOT. No one can believe we have waited this long. In 2012, I was looking forward as to what we were going to do when. I already had a cruise scheduled for Spring Break 2013, and also did a surprise Disneyland trip for NYE. With DDís birthday in 2014 being 10, I decided that would be a perfect time to go to WDW. You only have one double digit birthday, and what better way to celebrate than with Disney. So, the ďdateĒ was tentatively scheduled for June 2014.

Fast forward to March 2013. I had started to look at pricing the different resorts we were interested in using 2013 rates and coming up with a tentative budget. We then took our first cruise with just the 2 of us. Previously, I had gotten friends to go with us. But after a disastrous cruise in 2012 (got rid of a friend after than one!), I decided it was time for just the 2 of us. We had a wonderful time, met a lot of wonderful people through our cruise meet (even a family from our home town Ė Hi Mike, Alycia, Paige and Austin!). And I listened to my first DVC talk. I was hooked. Based on the numbers (and since those are my living!), I knew that it would be a good deal for me to seriously consider this. Less than 6 hours later, we were the proud owners at the AKV, and my tentative WDW budget had, for all practical purposes, been severely reduced.

In the coming posts I will share all the thoughts/plans/confusion I've had/currently have. All opinions/ideas are welcome (not necessarily taken, but definitely appreciated!)

You've meet the players in this trip, now for the other specifics:

When: May 29 - June 10, 2014
Where: 5 nights BLT (hopefully), and 7 nights at AKV, Jambo, 1 Bd SV (that's 13 days total!)

Celebrating our First Trip, Hannah's 10th Birthday, and we might celebrate my birthday a little early one night.
__________________
Disney Magic, 5/2009, 7 day Eastern ** Disney Dream, 6/2011, 5 day Bahamas ** Disneyland/Disney Wonder, 3/2012, 7 day MR ** Disney Fantasy, 3/2013, 7 day Eastern ** Next up: 2015 Fantasy B2B (July 2015)

Disneyland - 2/2006, 4/2008, 10/2009, 3/2010, 7/2010, 9/2010, 3/2012, 1/2013
WDW - 2014 and 1st DVC stay!


Last edited by NMDisneyMom; 10-29-2013 at 10:00 PM.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:54 PM   #2
NMDisneyMom
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We are staying where?

So, when I first began planning this trip (pre-DVC purchase), based on everything that I had read I KNEW I wanted to do a split stay between Poly and AKL. Poly for Mom since I enjoyed that lush tropical feeling, and AKL because Hannah loves animals especially zebras. So the DVC purchase helped since we bought at AKV so that part of the trip was set. I still planned on doing a split with Poly, and then the dreaded "construction" news came out. Now I don't like going on vacation to listen to construction noise, and not knowing what's going to be open or not.

So I began agonizing over what to do, what to do. Based on what I was reading, there were lots of DISers with the same question. I still really wanted to stay at the Poly, but..... Then I had the thought, why not try out another DVC resort, but which one? I started discussing things with some friends that have DVC and BLT starting sounding good. More reading to do, more being a little disappointed that I wouldn't be staying at the Poly.

But I finally made the decision to try for a villa at BLT for the beginning of our stay. Fingers crossed because I get to make that reservation in just a couple of days.

Now comes what I have decided is a fun position to be in. I had initially thought about a Studio with a Standard View or even a Lake View. But as I looked at my points I realized I had MORE points that needed to be used. I couldn't extend our stay, so how do you use up points? Let's try for a 1 Bd Lake View room. I'll know in a few days if that works out or not.

The question that I have now, is where do I request a room at both AKV and BLT?
__________________
Disney Magic, 5/2009, 7 day Eastern ** Disney Dream, 6/2011, 5 day Bahamas ** Disneyland/Disney Wonder, 3/2012, 7 day MR ** Disney Fantasy, 3/2013, 7 day Eastern ** Next up: 2015 Fantasy B2B (July 2015)

Disneyland - 2/2006, 4/2008, 10/2009, 3/2010, 7/2010, 9/2010, 3/2012, 1/2013
WDW - 2014 and 1st DVC stay!

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Old 10-27-2013, 03:20 PM   #3
LB1122
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What a fun fun trip you have started planning. I do not know much about DVC points but so glad it worked out for you to join in. We had looked into it after our first family trip, but than hubby lost his job so things got put on hold. Maybe someday..

Love the cruise photo - that is next on our list so I will pick your brain when the time comes.

Good luck getting all you want.
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Old 10-29-2013, 09:58 PM   #4
NMDisneyMom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LB1122 View Post
What a fun fun trip you have started planning. I do not know much about DVC points but so glad it worked out for you to join in. We had looked into it after our first family trip, but than hubby lost his job so things got put on hold. Maybe someday..

Love the cruise photo - that is next on our list so I will pick your brain when the time comes.

Good luck getting all you want.


I don't know much about DVC myself - it's all trial and error at this point. Cruising is awesome! I find them very relaxing. Just wish I could figure out a way to afford them every year! Next one in 2015.
__________________
Disney Magic, 5/2009, 7 day Eastern ** Disney Dream, 6/2011, 5 day Bahamas ** Disneyland/Disney Wonder, 3/2012, 7 day MR ** Disney Fantasy, 3/2013, 7 day Eastern ** Next up: 2015 Fantasy B2B (July 2015)

Disneyland - 2/2006, 4/2008, 10/2009, 3/2010, 7/2010, 9/2010, 3/2012, 1/2013
WDW - 2014 and 1st DVC stay!

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Old 10-29-2013, 10:09 PM   #5
NMDisneyMom
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Getting There and Someplace to Stay

So, I managed to get our flights booked from Albuquerque to Orlando for May 29th a couple of weeks ago when Southwest opened it's next round of dates. We leave at 8:55a and get into Orlando at 4:50. I really hate that SW got rid of the direct flights out of Albuquerque. Now with the time changes and the layovers, its an all day trip. Oh well, I guess we will see Chicago again!

This morning I was able to book our 1 Bd villa at BLT. So, we are officially staying BLT from 5/29 - 6/3, and AKV from 6/3 to 6/10. That's a total of 13 days although the first and the last will be travel only days.

Now it's time to start working on the schedule. This is the area that I'm having the most difficulty with. I've got a couple of things planned out, but I'm feeling very overwhelmed with most of it.

Next installment: What are we going to do each day???
__________________
Disney Magic, 5/2009, 7 day Eastern ** Disney Dream, 6/2011, 5 day Bahamas ** Disneyland/Disney Wonder, 3/2012, 7 day MR ** Disney Fantasy, 3/2013, 7 day Eastern ** Next up: 2015 Fantasy B2B (July 2015)

Disneyland - 2/2006, 4/2008, 10/2009, 3/2010, 7/2010, 9/2010, 3/2012, 1/2013
WDW - 2014 and 1st DVC stay!

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