A Disney-Addicted mom plans an August, 2013 Autotrain Trip for 7! *Big Update! 11/19*

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by DrMomof3, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    My name's Amanda and I'm a 41 year old mom of 3. I also happen to work full-time as a doctor. And for the last several years I've become a runner (and a runDisney addict!). I am the head Disney addict in a family of Disney addicts. My husband sometimes pretends he doesn't love Disney as much as I do but then he'll say something like, "I can't wait until we're walking around Epcot again. It just takes all my stress away." Then I realize that we're a Disney-addicted family! :lmao:

    Here's my crew:
    [​IMG]
    This is me after finishing the Princess Half Marathon. I quickly changed clothes in the car and met my family at the monorail station for a day of fun!

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    Tom, age 43 (almost 44) at MCO waiting for our flight home. The sad flight home. :sad2:

    [​IMG]
    Nathaniel, age 9. My talented artist and musician who is also full of angst and neuroses.

    [​IMG]
    Jessica, age 7. The Diva and socialite.

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    Zachary, age 4 (almost 5). Clearly a Disney-addict in the making! :rotfl2: Zachary has mild Cerebral Palsy but has a super happy disposition.

    For our August trip we are bringing 2 special guests:
    My step-dad, Steve. Aka Popsie. My mom passed away very unexpectedly over Christmas so we're trying to bring Popsie along to as many events as possible.
    Our fantastic nanny, Karin.
     
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  3. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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  4. ddluvsdisney

    ddluvsdisney DIS Veteran

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    I found it Amanda!! Can't wait to read. :)
     
  5. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Awww! Thank you!

    Amanda
     
  6. Twoboysnmygirl

    Twoboysnmygirl DIS Veteran

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    Could never pass up a PTR or TR of yours Amanda! ;) 2014 is the year I join the runDisney ranks! I'm running that PHM if I have to crawl and drag myself there! I'm injury free and transitioning to minimalist shoes, so I have a little under a year to get that mileage up! Can't wait to hear about August! :thumbsup2
     
  7. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Traveling with a group of 7 meant we had limited options for resorts. I knew we'd have to stay on property so we could split up if we wanted. 7 people aren't going to want to spend every minute of a vacation together.
    Obviously we could stay in 3 rooms at a value but I couldn't see my almost 70 year old step-dad at Pop Century. 3 rooms at a moderate weren't any cheaper than staying in a 2 bedroom villa. So we started considering different DVC resorts.
    One option which seemed pretty ideal:

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    A Treehouse!

    Pros: 3 bedrooms instead of 2. Looks really awesome! Private deck with grill and seating. We were planning to have a car anyway.
    Cons: Far away from everything. Even the theme pool for SSR is relatively far. Harder to split up because Disney transportation to SSR is notoriously bad.

    Option 2:

    [​IMG]

    Bay Lake Tower

    Pros: My children loved staying here 2 years ago. You get an extra bathroom in the 2 bedroom villa which is nice with a large party. Walking distance to MK and 2 monorails from Epcot.
    Cons: Very pricey. Monorail to Epcot takes a surprisingly long time. Shared bus service to DHS and AK is annoying.

    Option 3:

    [​IMG]

    Beach Club Villas

    Pros: This is definitely Tom's favorite resort. Great pool. Short walk to Epcot. Easy access to DHS. Lots of great restaurants in walking distance.
    Cons: Very limited availability. Most 2 bedroom villas have a queen + sofa bed in 2nd bedroom.

    Option 4:

    [​IMG]

    Animal Kingdom Villas

    Pros: Beautiful resort with lots of onsite activities. Kidani has 3 bathrooms in the 2 bedroom villas.
    Cons: Tom has never been interested in staying here due to the distance from our favorite Disney stuff. Savanna room villas are very pricey.

    Option 5:

    [​IMG]

    Boardwalk Villas

    Pros: Great location. Good pool. Lots of great restaurants in vicinity.
    Cons: Most 2 bedroom villas have queen + sofa bed in 2nd bedroom. Scary clown pool?

    We were hoping to book the room with Tom's military discount (he works at West Point). We originally booked a Treehouse but this week we decided to change resorts.... :rolleyes1

    Amanda
     
  8. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Great news Karen!!!! I can't wait to follow your running journey. I'd love to run the Princess again. So much fun!

    Amanda
     
  9. cogero

    cogero DIS Veteran

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    I am here.
     
  10. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Welcome! Or should I say welcome back??? :lmao:

    Amanda
     
  11. momto3gr8boys

    momto3gr8boys DIS Veteran

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    I'm here too! Another team August member here and future runDisney convert. I'm planning on TInk and F&W for 2014! Can't wait to see where you end up! OKW, while not my favorite, has huge 2BR and GVs if you are looking for more room.
     
  12. Enchanted

    Enchanted DIS Veteran

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    I can't wait to find out which villa you're going to stay at! Awesome choices! :goodvibes
     
  13. luvpoohandcompany

    luvpoohandcompany DIS Veteran

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    Whew found you :wave2: Cant wait to hear where you end up- so exciting:goodvibes
    Hope you are all doing ok since your mum passed. Glad you are able to bring your popsi on holiday. He will love having you all there and kids have a great way of taking away pain/sadness or at least distracting you from it for a little bit :)
     
  14. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    I will come read about your planning!
    Location is more important to us than space which is why we moved away from the Treehouses.

    Thank you!!!

    That's our hope. Trying to distract him as much as possible!

    Amanda
     
  15. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    This is somewhat unrelated to our August trip to Disney but is definitely related to Disney trip planning in general...
    We've been considering DVC membership on and off for several years. Obviously as a large-ish family who stays in deluxe resorts and villas anyway, DVC may offer long-term benefits. And we find that the kids do better when they have more space than a single hotel room.
    I worried in the past that I would hate not having daily Mousekeeping. We've found on several of our more recent trips that the Mousekeeping was inconsistent at times and often showed up when we were back in the room relaxing or getting ready for dinner. I love having a washer/dryer and we actually tend to use the kitchen quite a bit. The advantages of the extra space seem to far outweigh the disadvantages of no Mousekeeping. And we tend to either have a car for grocery shopping or use Garden Grocer to have breakfast and snacks anyway.
    I also see that we are going to have to be able to pay for grandparents if we want them to join us (my dad and Tom's mom). That would mean either paying cash for a villa or getting 2 rooms. Both are expensive options.
    After much research on the DVC Boards here and many different DVC web presentations (I have more DVC lithographs than I know what to do with...), I've learned a lot about DVC. I know that August is our best Use Year and that we will probably - eventually - want both BLT and BCV as our home resorts.

    All that having been said...
    On Friday I noticed an 160 point contract for Beach Club Villas with an August Use Year. I made an offer and today I heard that our offer was accepted. :cool1: We still need to sign contracts and then Disney has the Right of First Refusal (ROFR) - which means Disney may decide it's TOO good a deal and buy the contract themselves. All of this will take at least a month or so but we may find ourselves DVC members....

    Amanda
     
  16. blessedmom4

    blessedmom4 WE BELIEVE IN MIRACLES! ~~Nearly twice as many chi

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    Amanda, I have finally found your new PTR and HOW EXCITING you might be new DVC owners! That is fabulous and makes excellent sense; especially since you visit so frequently! :cheer2: I am happy/excited for you and hope Disney doesn't want it. Congratulations on the first step! :goodvibes
     
  17. DrMomof3

    DrMomof3 DIS Veteran

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    Thank you!!!! :love:
    I am so far behind on my DISing. I need to catch up!

    Amanda
     
  18. ddluvsdisney

    ddluvsdisney DIS Veteran

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    OMG Amanda that is great news!!! We LOVE the BC. We have only stayed there once on CL and it was great. The kids love SAB too. I lurk on that board a lot! I know you have stayed there a few times and love it too. So that as your "home" makes perfect sense.

    Teena will be psyched!!! Lol :)
     
  19. ddluvsdisney

    ddluvsdisney DIS Veteran

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    OMG Amanda that is great news!!!

    We LOVE the BC and I often lurk on that board. I know you have stayed there a few times and love it too!! So it makes perfect sense it is your "home" resort.

    Hope it all works out!!

    Teena will be psyched!!!! Lol :)
     
  20. ddluvsdisney

    ddluvsdisney DIS Veteran

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    Sorry about the double post! I didn't think it sent the first time. :(
     
  21. cogero

    cogero DIS Veteran

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    Fabulous news about the BC contract keeping my fingers crossed for you.
     

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