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Old 01-26-2005, 07:37 PM   #1
Wishing I Had a Magic Wand
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 415

Our First WDW Family Adventure – Pre Trip

Cast of Characters

Me (41) Dis Board Junkie who would rather spend time planning trip than cooking dinner.

DH (41) Funder of trip and generous earner of frequent flier miles to get us there…appreciates all the Disney planning, not so thrilled with the no dinners thing.

DS (10) Thrill-Seeker…very excited to be going to the “World”. Been twice to Disneyland and loves any ride that goes fast, high or upside-down.

DS (8) Drama King…charming child who loves meeting the characters, thinks he’s a thrill-seeker (but is still a little frightened of upside-down) and may blow a gasket at any time. Been to Disneyland once.

DS (4) Binky Boy…Happy to be going anywhere the family goes, as long as he’s with Mom. Still needs a binky at night, but will assail brothers with full blows when provoked. Also been to DL once.

Trip Dates: 1/7/05 – 1/15/05

As you can see, I have read many of the Trip Reports posted here and have adopted the popular format of the Cast of Characters…not that it’s good to label people, just that it’s funny and usually pertinent to our daily adventures.

Background on this trip goes like this…Years ago before kids, DH traveled extensively for work and earned a great many flier miles on Delta Airlines (enough for 5 free tickets). Living in Seattle and then having three kids, our vacationing over the past ten years has been done mostly on the West Coast using Alaska Airlines. The Delta miles have been sitting untouched waiting for us to plan the “BIG” trip to WDW when our youngest was at least five. Over the course of the past couple of years, Delta has begun to struggle financially…enough so that we became concerned over whether the airlines may even be around in a couple more years to let us use our miles. So, we begin to think …hmmm… maybe we should just take that trip now!!!

We always knew that when the time came, we would want to pull our kids out of school to avoid massive crowds during the usual breaks. That combined with the availability of flights for our FF awards level led us to the dates in early January. Naturally, this meant it was to be the big Christmas present for the boys, so all our planning was done on the sly until the unveiling on Christmas morning.

I read many of the tips on these boards for making the trip a surprise…Thank You! I made a trip to our local Disney store for Disney Dollars. I also purchased the books, WDW 4 Teens by Teens and 4 Kids by Kids for my two older boys to read. I bought the Magic Kingdom Game and on Christmas morning I put all of these into a big Disney gift bag with a mylar Mickey balloon tied on it. I first sent the kids on a Scavenger Hunt around the house to find glow sticks, rain ponchos, rolls of pennies and quarters, light-up rings and disposable cameras. When they had them all, they came back to find the big bag next to the Christmas tree. They dove in to uncover the treasure…but didn’t get it! We had to prompt them as to why they had been given books on WDW!!! Of course, when it sunk in, they were overjoyed, Binky Boy too, although I’m not sure he truly understood what it all meant. He just danced around because the other two did.

In the two weeks between Christmas and our departure, we spent a lot of time watching the Disney Vacation Planning Video, Travel Channel shows, various Disney movies, playing the Magic Kingdom game (which we loved), and reading the books. In fact, it was at Drama King’s insistence that we made a PS for the Hoop De Doo Revue, which I had already decided against. He read about it in his Kids 4 Kids book. He also made sure we had wake up calls while we were on-site so a character could call us…he hoped for Pluto, but we had to remind him Pluto didn’t speak! Thrill-Seeker even spent time reading my giant Unofficial Guide book. We decided that two weeks was the perfect amount of time for them to anticipate their trip. It wasn’t too long to wait, yet gave them all some time to look forward to it.

I, of course, am now feeling bereft not having any more planning to do. I loved every minute I spent on these boards. I learned so much from all of you and hope to be able to plan another trip sometime in the future. WDW is a trek for us and we thought we would probably only be able to do it once. Disneyland is fairly accessible for us, but now having experienced the World, neither DH or I will ever look upon it in quite the same way. We will hope that a chance may arise for us to go again some day.

In the meantime, laundry has piled up and a dinner needs to be cooked, but I will instead spend some time re-living our adventure as I write this trip report and hope that you enjoy reading mine as I have yours.
DH DW DS20 DS18 DS14
Jan '05 Boardwalk Inn

Feb '07 Eastern Caribbean on the Magic and POR
Apr '08 Grand Californian

Thanksgiving '08 Magic Double Dip and Pop Century!
Feb '12 Disneyland Hotel
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Old 01-26-2005, 08:00 PM   #2

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Cannot WAIT to read the rest of it - Your husband will just have to go without dinner a while longer!
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Old 01-26-2005, 08:31 PM   #3
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I can't tell you how many suppers I have burned DISing, especially cookies. Stay with the posting of your trip reports.b
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Old 01-26-2005, 08:54 PM   #4
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More, More!
Off site 1990 Grand Floridian Concierge 2005 here's a link to our GF photos http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=900541
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Old 01-27-2005, 09:31 AM   #5
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I like how you surprised the boys on xmas morning. I think that may be something I'll do with my younger 2 children in the future. We were at WDW the first week of Jan 2005 (Jan 4-10) and it is the BEST time to go!! I've never been there in January before and I think it is now my favorite time to go. It was sunny and in the 80's every day (70/69 at night), and there were no crowds.

I can't wait to read the rest of your trip report.

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Old 02-02-2005, 08:35 PM   #6
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We too have the dinner dilema in our home.
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Old 02-04-2005, 06:53 PM   #7
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What a wonderful surprise for your boys. Can't wait to read the other installments.

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Old 02-05-2005, 09:40 PM   #8
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Oh you were so sweet to your kids. Mine are all grown so we're going w the nephews!
Peace and Good Health,
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