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Old 12-31-2013, 09:11 AM   #1
NiniMorris
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Disney...by Land and Sea...Morris Style!

NewPre- Trip Report
I know…hard to believe I would do a new Pre-trip report, but I guess it is time. I used the same PTR for three trips, so I think having a new one is a good thing…right?

First let’s start with the cast of characters.
Me – Nini – Mom, homeschooler, wife, seamstress, and pretty good TA. I have been addicted to Disney since I was a child. I have a picture of my second birthday where my favorite gift was a Donald Duck Bank. WDW opened up in October…just as I was turning 17. I was positive we were going there for my birthday! Imagine my disappointment when we only went to Pensacola…to the BEACH!

When my older kids were growing up we were a military family. Vacations were reserved for visiting the grandparents each summer for a month: Two weeks in Georgia and 2 weeks in Missouri with a stop in between in Nashville to see MY grandparents.

When we got the two youngest kids back in 2002, I made it my mission to get them to Disney! We have been back at least once every year since!

Husband – Dad, retired military, deputy sheriff, Stump grinder, and pretty good at putting up with me for these 36 plus years! He was never enthusiastic about those early trips to Disney…and preferred the more easy going trips of visiting relatives. But he has now become almost a Disney aficionado. He will talk Disney with almost anyone…although I do believe that discussing the people’s Disney trip as he is writing them a ticket is a bit much! He loves to explain to people that are on their way to Disney that they are going wrong and sends them on the back roads…it knocks about 2 hours of time off their trips….NO BODY wants to go through Atlanta traffic!

Miss B – daughter TEENAGER! Yes Miss B is now a teenager. That means nothing we want to do will suit her. She knows more about everything than I do and she thinks listening to me is a chore best done with closed ears… Although she still loves going to Disney, she LOVES to complain about having to go and having to wear matchy shirts, and having to spend time with her family! She is the older of my two younger kids. She came to live with us forever when she was a little over 1. She doesn’t remember her bio mom, but does remember that she had one. She is my ‘tester’. She tests everything we say. She pushes us to the limits and then will go a few steps beyond…always staying just close enough to safety to keep from having to suffer the consequences…

Mr D – son. He is my youngest, both in chronological age and physical age. I used to say he was my forever 3 year old, but lately he is testing much older. He is now testing at a 5 year old. We are so excited about this! He was about 6 months old when he came to live with us forever. He was always very advanced for his age, with fine motor skills that had EVERYONE amazed. All that changed when he was involved in a motor vehicle accident when he was 3. He suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury that left him paralyzed on the left side and having to learn how to walk talk and swallow all over again.

He has come a LONG way! In the almost 9 years since the accident he has made so much progress that we know there is no stopping him! He is my miracle baby. They never thought he would make it, and if he did they didn’t think he would ever walk again. I was also told he would never talk again. He proved them all wrong, and continues to show me that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough.

Grand Princess- 6 year old granddaughter. For a long time she was the ONLY granddaughter. While that changed when her Aunt Amanda had a little girl in May, she will always remain an only child. She is beautiful and about as perfect as a child could ever be (even though I AM a bit biased!) She is my Disney buddy. We have been taking her since she was 2. She is now into designing her own dresses for Disney. Of course, I am the one who is supposed to make her designs a reality. She had a rough year last year, but is pushing though like there is no problem.

She was born with club foot. She had her first castings done when she was only 4 days old. Her first surgery when she was 6 months. One foot took really well to the casting and first surgery, and is now corrected. The other one is proving to be as stubborn as she is. We have lost count as to the number of surgeries she has had. In February of 2012 she had a life changing surgery. Something went wrong and she developed a resistant infection. There were times we thought she was going to lose her foot. She did end up losing two bones in her foot from the growth plate. She had numerous surgeries for the next year; actually about 3 a week. Unless you look closely now you would not know…she is an ever moving dynamo…who just happens to have one foot that is about 4 inches shorter than the other. She will have to have another surgery in a few years to correct the length issue, and then several plastic surgeries to deal with the scars, but for now she is a healthy happy normal 6 year old.

DS30 something- oldest child and Disney lover! His first trip to Disney was when the Grand Princess was 2. He and his wife decided at the last minute (ok more like 3 weeks before we left) that they wanted to go too. It was a scramble to get them a reservation and ADRs, but they had a blast. They also took their foster child as well. We did not know if he was going to be able to go until the last minute… but they got the approval less than 48 hours before we left. Since he was only18 months old, there was not a lot of changes we needed to make…

DDIL (soon to be 30) my great daughter in law and Disney lover…but always hates the planning and the worry that comes with planning a trip! Every year she says they are not going back and every year she changes her mind and goes!


(Now, just for claity sake...the last three may or may not go on the next trip... but I added them just in case!)

Up next...our general plans!


Nini
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My four little reasons for Disney

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http://quiltsbynini.blogspot.com/

2012? No Problem...but when?



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Old 12-31-2013, 09:16 AM   #2
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Basic Plans

Running numbers and dates, and trying to come up with something that is workable. Since I know I only want to have 2 park days while we are at Disney, and the cruise is set in stone...I have worked out the following rough draft...

Friday, pick the kids up at school at lunch (counts as day present) and head to Cape Canaveral. Get a room some where on the beach for two nights so we can have a short beach vacation.

Sunday, board the ship and enjoy the cruise.

Thursday, Disembark and head to Disney. Enjoy an Epcot day.
Friday, a day of relaxing at the resort and pool.
Saturday, a Downtown Disney day
Sunday, after church, a Magic Kingdom day.
Monday, Happy Birthday...travel home!


While it is not perfect, it is a start. However the most exciting part is that I am considering getting the Deluxe Dining Plan. Since we 'should' get Free Dining, it will only be an additional $740 to add the deluxe on...and since we won't be going to the parks most days, it will give us more time to enjoy a wider variety of restaurants!

I know it is a splurge...but then again, the whole vacation will be a splurge! A Deluxe Family room with Veranda on the cruise (with serious thoughts to upgrade to a 1 bedroom suite); and an Animal Kingdom Savanna room for the park portion... not exactly the cheap vacation we normally do! But you only turn 60 once!

Of course, now I have to figure out something spectacular for my husband's 60th in July!



(apologies to those who have already seen this! But I promise to add some more details once I figure them out in my head...and it is a bit lonely in there at the moment!

Nini
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Mom to Brianna and Damien
Grandma to Alyssa and Amelia
My four little reasons for Disney

Etsy id: QuiltsbyNini
http://quiltsbynini.blogspot.com/

2012? No Problem...but when?



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Old 12-31-2013, 09:25 AM   #3
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I am here and can't wait to follow around on your adventures.

You are an awesome TA.
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Etsy ID: ChiarasCouture2014 here we come... WDW, a cruise, F&G and more!!! Why don't we make this trip report about 2012 & 2013.
Christmas & My Happy Place Equals Perfection. - A Dec 2011 PTR
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:54 AM   #4
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I am here too!!! Now, I will be back to read after I work out.

D~
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:47 PM   #5
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I'm in. Sounds like a great trip to plan.
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:10 AM   #6
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I just saw this, yea for a new PTR!

Beach, Cruise, Disney= my Heaven!
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Old 01-01-2014, 06:02 AM   #7
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Sorry I didn't make it back when I said I would.

I loved reading the intros... I think Miss B would get along fabulously with my girls!

I cannot believe how much progress Mr. D has made - such a wonderful miracle!

I've been wondering about how the Grandprincess is doing... SO happy to hear she is doing well and is speeding along on her foot!

I love your plans - but I think I told you that?

I hope you have a wonderful New YEar Nini!

D~ <---- Who wouldn't mind seeing a mini-TR from your latest trip.
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Old 01-01-2014, 09:01 AM   #8
NiniMorris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cogero View Post
I am here and can't wait to follow around on your adventures.

You are an awesome TA.
Aww...Thank you Chiara!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMGeurts View Post
I am here too!!! Now, I will be back to read after I work out.

D~
Glad to see you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatMark View Post
I'm in. Sounds like a great trip to plan.
Thanks Kathy!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blessedmom4 View Post



I just saw this, yea for a new PTR!

Beach, Cruise, Disney= my Heaven!
I am Soooo excited for this one! (Can't imagine why! LOL)

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMGeurts View Post
Sorry I didn't make it back when I said I would.

I loved reading the intros... I think Miss B would get along fabulously with my girls!

I cannot believe how much progress Mr. D has made - such a wonderful miracle!

I've been wondering about how the Grandprincess is doing... SO happy to hear she is doing well and is speeding along on her foot!

I love your plans - but I think I told you that?

I hope you have a wonderful New YEar Nini!

D~ <---- Who wouldn't mind seeing a mini-TR from your latest trip.

The Grand Princess is doing great...I still have problems when I look at her foot...it still doesn't 'look' like a foot. It is very mal formed. She still has what her surgeon is calling a debit in the top of the foot...it is about an inch deep, and big enough that you could put a finger into it. It is one of those places that is really hard to keep clean...so there is still a chance of infection getting in there. She goes to her pediatrician once a month to have it looked at. (and cleaned out)It is technically still considered an open wound...but it isn't really 'open'

But it does not slow her down! She has to be reminded that if she is going to be on her foot a lot she has to wear special shoes...she doesn't like them... but when she doesn't wear them the foot gets a little...oozy...and we can get an infection in pretty easy at that time. (sad to say, her other grand mother will not let her spend the night because she still refuses to look at the foot and will not take the responsibility to keep it clean...even for one night!)

oops...sorry....did NOT mean to get into that!



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Exciting news on the Morris front!

When we go to Disney, we ALWAYS stay moderate. I think it is somewhere around 12-13 trips (one of these days I really need to figure that up!) and we stayed off site on our first, and at SOG on our second...and ever since then we have stayed mods.

As you can see...my next big adventure will be at a Deluxe. So, last night, husband and I were talking and we decided we really should try a Value. I mean...how can I recommend a value if I have never stayed at one? So I spent NYE looking at dates, crowd calendars, and prices!

We have decided that we are limited by the kids' school schedule...they have already missed 6 days due to our last Disney trip... Mr D misses one day a week with his therapies, and Miss B has had a tummy bug twice, where she missed about 5 or 6 total (is it bad that I can't remember?)

Which basically means we have decided to go without the kids! The perfect weekend will be Super Bowl Weekend. Since husband is not interested in either of the teams that might be playing...it works perfect for us! I am currently trying to coordinate my daughter's schedule so she can baby sit the youngest....So, between only being two of us going, the military rates, and short trip...It will end up costing us so little...it is almost criminal not to go! (and since the main reason to go will be to check out the value resorts...it can be partially counted as a business expense.)

I am hoping the 7 Dwarfs Mine Train will be open by then as well!

See...Disney used to have special rates for TAs to go down....and you could go about once a month...pretty cheaply...just to check out all the resorts and rides...but they have cut back on that discount...like you are now allowed to only have one trip a year...and it has so many limits...like in number of days, people in the room, where you can stay...it really isn't worth it. And of course they cut that out before I had the chance to take advantage of it....

Luckily, we live so close (only a 7.5 hour drive) it is still relatively easy to go.

Anyway...this morning I will be checking to see what restaurants still have any availability for that weekend and making a plan of attack. I have a dummy room reservation made...but I have to wait until I can verify I have a babysitter before I can make it official...it may have to be a week later...(hopefully not earlier! I am not sure I can get a trip ready in less than 3 weeks!!!


That is all from the Morris Place!


I hope everyone had a safe New Years Eve....for us it was great...Husband did NOT have to work and he is officially OFF nights! So, until the end of April he is back on days! And we are all happier for it!

Now...if anyone has any ideas on something spectacular for Husband's 60th birthday in July....let me know!


Nini
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Nini Morris

Mom to Brianna and Damien
Grandma to Alyssa and Amelia
My four little reasons for Disney

Etsy id: QuiltsbyNini
http://quiltsbynini.blogspot.com/

2012? No Problem...but when?



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Old 01-01-2014, 10:32 AM   #9
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I am so excited you might have an extra trip. That is so awesome. I am hoping DH doesn't have to work anything extra for the Super Bowl.
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Etsy ID: ChiarasCouture2014 here we come... WDW, a cruise, F&G and more!!! Why don't we make this trip report about 2012 & 2013.
Christmas & My Happy Place Equals Perfection. - A Dec 2011 PTR
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Old 01-01-2014, 02:07 PM   #10
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I understand about Grandprincess' debit on her foot. Josh has much the same thing, but smaller on the back of his neck from the neck surgery he had a couple years ago. I am sad that there is still so much risk for infection for her, but so happy to hear it doesn't slow her down. And its very sad that her other grandmother doesn't want the burden of taking care of her foot, you would think she would be rewarded ten times over with the joy of spending time and getting to know her own grand daughter. Some people can't see beyond their own noses.

Super excited for you at the prospect of another trip... A little jealous, but still excited! Lol... I wish I could talk josh into moving to GA, I have so many friends there and the 'commute' to Disney would be so much easier for me.

I have an excellent idea for a 60th birthday for Rex... I say Disney in August, and I just know that Chiara would agree with me!

Thanks for the fantastic updates today!

D~
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Old 01-01-2014, 08:44 PM   #11
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I understand about Grandprincess' debit on her foot. Josh has much the same thing, but smaller on the back of his neck from the neck surgery he had a couple years ago. I am sad that there is still so much risk for infection for her, but so happy to hear it doesn't slow her down. And its very sad that her other grandmother doesn't want the burden of taking care of her foot, you would think she would be rewarded ten times over with the joy of spending time and getting to know her own grand daughter. Some people can't see beyond their own noses.

Super excited for you at the prospect of another trip... A little jealous, but still excited! Lol... I wish I could talk josh into moving to GA, I have so many friends there and the 'commute' to Disney would be so much easier for me.

I have an excellent idea for a 60th birthday for Rex... I say Disney in August, and I just know that Chiara would agree with me!

Thanks for the fantastic updates today!

D~
I agree definitely.
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Chiara
DVC Member since 7/08 Cast Chiara , Gerard , Chiara Michelle (12), Jimmy (6) Sami (6/5/13)

Etsy ID: ChiarasCouture2014 here we come... WDW, a cruise, F&G and more!!! Why don't we make this trip report about 2012 & 2013.
Christmas & My Happy Place Equals Perfection. - A Dec 2011 PTR
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Old 01-01-2014, 10:57 PM   #12
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for a possible additional trip.

60th birthday? I surprised Mark in December 2012 with our first ever Disney Christmas trip. We didn't tell him until the night before we left (I kept it a secret for six months!).
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Old 01-02-2014, 06:54 AM   #13
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for a possible additional trip.

60th birthday? I surprised Mark in December 2012 with our first ever Disney Christmas trip. We didn't tell him until the night before we left (I kept it a secret for six months!).
I remember that - it was SPECTACULAR!!!

I am praying that Josh surprises me for my 40th birthday with a Disney trip (I'll take any time of the year)... But that'll never happen.

D~
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Old 01-02-2014, 09:27 AM   #14
NiniMorris
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I am so excited you might have an extra trip. That is so awesome. I am hoping DH doesn't have to work anything extra for the Super Bowl.
I remain hopeful about the trip...but I am having a bit of problems getting it to work out. Needing child care seems to be the sticking point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMGeurts View Post
I understand about Grandprincess' debit on her foot. Josh has much the same thing, but smaller on the back of his neck from the neck surgery he had a couple years ago. I am sad that there is still so much risk for infection for her, but so happy to hear it doesn't slow her down. And its very sad that her other grandmother doesn't want the burden of taking care of her foot, you would think she would be rewarded ten times over with the joy of spending time and getting to know her own grand daughter. Some people can't see beyond their own noses.

Super excited for you at the prospect of another trip... A little jealous, but still excited! Lol... I wish I could talk josh into moving to GA, I have so many friends there and the 'commute' to Disney would be so much easier for me.

I have an excellent idea for a 60th birthday for Rex... I say Disney in August, and I just know that Chiara would agree with me!

Thanks for the fantastic updates today!

D~
I love it here in GA! However, I would prefer to live in FL...around Daytona Beach. It is only 5 hours from here and about an hour and a half to Disney. The houses are pretty reasonably priced...and that is on the beach!

I doubt I can get Rex to go to Disney in August...I have tried repeatedly ... since it is our anniversary. It is too hot for him!

The Grand Princess' other set of grandparents are very very strange! They are hippies from the 60's (even though they are not old enough for that!) They are very selfish.... and even when the kids were babies they did not want to have much to do with them. They required too much work. They have 3 grand kids and have only recently started to have anything to do with them. Even when it meant the two boys would go into foster care...they refused to give up their recreational use of illegal substances to keep them out of the foster care system.



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I agree definitely.
I had him talked into a cruise for August for our 35th anniversary...but it didn't work out. Disney is not his favorite place...but it does rank up there..

Quote:
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for a possible additional trip.

60th birthday? I surprised Mark in December 2012 with our first ever Disney Christmas trip. We didn't tell him until the night before we left (I kept it a secret for six months!).
I am 100% incapable of keeping a secret! LOL! I am afraid we will end up in Missouri for his birthday...while it will be fun for him, visiting my inlaws is not my idea of fun. I did that way too much in the early years!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMGeurts View Post
I remember that - it was SPECTACULAR!!!

I am praying that Josh surprises me for my 40th birthday with a Disney trip (I'll take any time of the year)... But that'll never happen.

D~
D~ maybe he will surprise you with a Cruise for your birthday! Maybe I need to procure his email address and put a bug in his ear!


_______________

Nothing new on the planning front...except that we did go over all the plans I have made so far and husband is on board with all of them... and even more importantly has decided to use our income tax refund to pay for it all! This is huge...because I had already started pinching pennies to make it work! I had told him I was paying off the cruise first, and if money was tight we would do without the park portion of the trip. He decided he wanted to do the whole thing so we will use the refund!!

I had thought we were using the refund this year for business expenses...but I guess not. (of course if we did that he would HAVE to make a decision about retirement!) We are lucky, we usually manage to get back between 4 and 8 thousand. Depends on how the business has been doing. I really hate that I haven't figured out how to make the government get a smaller chunk of it during the year, but it all depends on how the businesses do.

It seems that time is about to stand still....my son and his family (including the Grand Princess) might be taking a trip to Disney without us! They are still in the planning stages....and I seriously doubt they will go through with it... but it is fun to help them plan...


Well, back to the crowd calendars and school calendars and checking on cheap rates! LOL...I seriously think I should go to Disney every other month....


Nini
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Nini Morris

Mom to Brianna and Damien
Grandma to Alyssa and Amelia
My four little reasons for Disney

Etsy id: QuiltsbyNini
http://quiltsbynini.blogspot.com/

2012? No Problem...but when?



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Old 01-02-2014, 09:40 AM   #15
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D~ maybe he will surprise you with a Cruise for your birthday! Maybe I need to procure his email address and put a bug in his ear!
Hmmm.... Maybe you do? : That's a great idea... It's in 2015, so you have plenty of time to work on him... It would have to be just us though, and a relaxing resort... Hmmm... This is sounding better and better as the moments tick on.

Good luck making your extra trip work... IF anyone can do it - it's you! And FWIW... The kids can come stay with me.

D~
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