Celebrating my big 4-0 with the Big Cheese - Update 11/13, page 19

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by kschafer, May 7, 2011.

  1. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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    Welcome everyone to my quickie PTR which will segue into the real thing upon return. I leave just 1 short month from today

    My elementary school son tells me that all good stories explain who, what, when, where and how. So in order to do my best to make this a good story, that seems like a good place to begin…

    WHO?
    I suspect most of you who have wandered over here already know me but in case you are a new friend, let me take a second to introduce myself. I’m Katie…

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    I am a mom, a teacher and a Disneyaholic. Those who have been around my TR’s before know that I grew up with Disney in my life. Both sets of my grandparents had winter homes in Florida and we made trips down there every couple years and these trips often included a visit to Disney. I loved it dearly as a child and wanted to go back for a long time as a young adult but didn’t have the chance to again until 2008 when my parents took the whole family to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary

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    It was a fabulous trip and renewed my love for the place! Last year I somehow managed to convince my husband to allow me to go without him and the kids. I travelled for a week with my sister-in-law and had lots of awesome Dismeets!!

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    So did I convince hubby again to let me go without him? Well, the full story will soon follow but in short…no way! So I will once again be accompanied by my 3 favorite boys in the whole world.

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    My hubby Greg: also a teacher and a coach as well. He’s a hard working guy who sometimes forgets to stop and appreciate the little things in life. He enjoyed bits and pieces of our 2008 trip but would never call himself a fan. However, he’s actually looking forward to visiting with just the 4 of us and getting away from the real world for awhile (yes, it’s been a stressful school year)

    Our 9 year old Patrick: a smart and funny kid who is a Star Wars fanatic! He’s grown up a lot since our last trip and I’m hoping he will find the courage to try some of the bigger rides this year. He’s very sweet and affectionate and I’m excited to get to spend some time with him like this while he still thinks I’m cool!

    Our 6 year old Daniel. He is a bit more daring than his big brother and I think will willingly go on most rides unless they have a fright factor (like the haunted mansion). He is also very shy and doesn’t particularly like people in costumes so it will be interesting to see how he handles the characters this time (he wanted nothing to do with them 3 years ago!)

    WHAT
    We will be spending 15 glorious days travelling “the world”!! We have 10 day tickets with the water parks add-on which should keep us plenty busy. We also will be on the dining plan which will take us to most of the restaurants I’ve had on my “someday” list for awhile now…yummy!

    WHEN
    We are leaving at 6:00 am on Tuesday June 7. Those who just finished reading my 2010 TR may find this quite amusing after my horror tales of having to leave Disney last year at this same ridiculously early hour. Somehow though it seems much more reasonable when you are leaving FOR Disney.

    HOW
    This trip came after quite a bit of discussion and negotiation! Back in 2008, I commented to Greg that it would be fun to return in 2011 for my 40th birthday and I had this dream in my mind for the last few years. About the time I turned 39, I started to bring up the idea whenever I could work it in and even talked about it in hushed tones with the boys who of course loved the idea! Greg basically ignored me at first but after awhile started responding, but not positively like I had hoped. He basically questioned what made me think it would be OK for the kids and I to go without him. You see, Greg is a basketball coach and my birthday is the week after Thanksgiving which would have meant he couldn’t come.

    After pouting about it and trying to get my way, I realized he wasn’t going to budge on the point. My tactics then changed to see when I could convince him to go. His first suggestion was spring break since his coaching season would be over. Unfortunately our spring break backs up to Easter next year and although I liked the idea of going during that time of year, the thought of those crowds just didn’t appeal to me.

    I had been thinking so much about a winter visit and really wanted to share Christmas-time at Disney with my boys so I suggested our winter break. Unfortunately this also falls during basketball season and although they don’t have games, he would have had to miss a week of practice and he just didn’t feel like he could do that (plus of course, the whole crowds thing again!)

    I really had my heart set on going in 2011 since it not only is my 40th birthday but also the 40th anniversary of the opening of Magic Kingdom so I started looking at the crowd calendar. I commented to Greg that crowds are still not too bad in early June. The best deal out at the time was the free kids ticket and we realized that this would be our last chance to go before Patrick becomes a Disney “adult”. So a plan was set in motion!

    Being teachers, we obviously have flexibility during our summer vacation and the ability to take the time we want (wouldn’t it be great to say the same thing about our finances). Greg knows about the ticket pricing and immediately started talking about a 10 day trip. I suggested we maybe add a day or two so we could have some rest time in the middle so we started to price out plane tickets. As it turns out, the best deal we could find was for a 15 night trip.

    We debated whether we could make it work and I decided to call Disney to find out if I had any PIN codes attached to my name and it turns out I did….Free Dining!! That basically sealed the deal for Greg, with that, we actually saved money by staying longer and taking the cheaper flights and so a trip was born!

    So although I won’t be spending my birthday with the mouse, I am considering this my birthday trip and plan to wear the button and celebrate anyway!!

    Next up…how will we tell the boys?
     
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  3. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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  4. Corrine 1973

    Corrine 1973 What do you mean I am not a princess, don't you se

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    Spending your 40th with the mouse sounds like a good idea to me, might have to barrow that from you. But than again I am planning on taking my DD in 2013 for her birthday witch also happens to be the year of my 40th.:lmao::cool1:

    We will be there not to long before you in late May/early June and will also be celebrating some birthdays that are not actually happening during our trip. My DS's b-day is 4 days before our trip and mine is in mid august. I have already added his birthday as a celebration to the room and several ADR's but I am not against wearing a B-day button as well.

    Can't wait to read more.popcorn:: And am honored to be considered one of your new friends.:lmao:
     
  5. Megablocks

    Megablocks DIS Veteran

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    I'm here Katie! :banana: I know I fell behind on your other report but it will not happen on this one!
     
  6. wigdoutdismom

    wigdoutdismom DIS Veteran

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    Here! Here! Here!
     
  7. 2xcited2sleep

    2xcited2sleep DIS Veteran

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    I'm here! Woo hoo - one month from today! :yay:

    I picked up the park maps/info you wanted and will stick that in the mail to you, hopefully tomorrow! :)
     
  8. MeMom

    MeMom DIS Veteran

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    What an awesome birthday present - two weeks in Disney World! :dance3:
    With us having to cut our summer trip short, even one week is sounding exciting right now, but two is just fabulous!!! :woohoo:

    Your Star Wars boy is going to be one happy fella! :darth: :ewok: :yoda: :chewy:
     
  9. manntra

    manntra DIS Veteran

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    15 days!!! You are one lucky birthday girl!! :goodvibes
    Looking forward to hearing about where you are staying and of course your ADR's!! :thumbsup2


    Tracy
     
  10. jenjolt

    jenjolt Loves All Things Disney!

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    I'm so in Katie!! I can't wait to hear all about your trip!! And I made 1st page to boot WOOT WOOT!!!
     
  11. sunny_stace

    sunny_stace DIS Veteran

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    I'm here!! Can't wait to hear more and more as we get closer! :)
     
  12. dvc4life

    dvc4life Disney is my Happy Place

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    Wow. What a way to spend your 40th birthday but with 15 days at WDW. Have a great trip!
     
  13. Queenofallthings

    Queenofallthings DIS Veteran

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  14. Happy Elf

    Happy Elf DIS Veteran

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    I'm here! What an awesome birthday present! :wizard:
     
  15. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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    :welcome: new friend! We didn't celebrate any birthdays on our first trip since it was my parents anniversary celebration. I'm excited to feel like the birthday girl, nobody needs to know it will be a few months early

    Glad you made it Meghan!

    Yay yay yay!!

    We went to lunch today and talked about where we would be eating lunch 1 month from today...is that wrong?

    Thanks for the maps, do you still have my address?

    2 IS fabulous!! I think both boys are going to be thrilled for SWW!

    All the details will be revealed in time, gotta have something to talk about for the next 30 days!

    Well, I'm not quite as popular as some of you so making it on the first page isn't as difficult :laughing:

    Hi Stace!

    Well hello fellow Iowan! :wave:

    Thanks for joining me :goodvibes

    Hey Janell, glad you made it!!

    **************************************

    To all my fellow Mom's:

    :flower3: Happy Mother's Day!!!! :flower3:

    Hope you are all given the royal treatment!
     
  16. ILuvCrush

    ILuvCrush DIS Veteran

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    I'm here!! And I'm not even LATE for a change!!! :rotfl2::rotfl2::rotfl2:
     
  17. sunny_stace

    sunny_stace DIS Veteran

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    Hope YOU were given the royal treatment! :)
    Happy Mother's Day Katie! :hug:
     
  18. NancyLuvsMickey

    NancyLuvsMickey Mouseketeer

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    I'm here... popcorn::

    And spending 15 nights at Disney sounds wonderful!!! :cloud9:
     
  19. SoonerGirl

    SoonerGirl DIS Veteran

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    I'm here Katie!!! If I didn't have this cruise coming up I would be sooooo stinkin' jealous of your 15 day trip, as it is I'm just moderately jealous :laughing:

    Hope you had a fabulous Mother's Day!!
     
  20. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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    Glad you made it P :goodvibes

    It was a nice day! I got breakfast in bed complete with a mickey mouse club card, a couple hanging baskets of pansies for the porch a birdfeeder for the flower bed outside the kitchen window. I had my morning coffee while watching a cardinal eat breakfast this morning :thumbsup2

    :welcome: We are very excited and ready for the school year to be over!

    I could say the same thing about your cruise! Not sure I'll ever talk Greg into that. Glad you found me :goodvibes
     
  21. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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    Sorry to have taken so long to get back to you! I wrote this update a few days ago but just needed to add the photos. When I went to find them...they were gone :guilty: I had uploaded them to the computer when Patrick borrowed my camera for a field trip and somehow they didn't get saved...grrr! So tonight the boys cooperated with me a bit although they would not recreate the excitement of the first time.

    On we go...

    When we first started a serious discussion about booking a trip, Greg wanted to keep it secret from the boys. In fact, we talked about doing the surprise-them-at-the-airport thing which did sound like fun. However, I love the whole planning thing and I knew the boys would too. Also, in order to go for so long in June, the boys will have to give up some of their summer activities (in particular, Patrick has to give up the June session of Kids in College which he absolutely loves) and I wanted them to understand why.

    We discussed various ways to tell them and finally settled on a puzzle surprise. I purchased a 100 piece puzzle and after putting it together, I wrote a message on the back. We then placed all the pieces in a jar and told the boys they would earn a couple pieces each day by doing their jobs without complaint and having good behavior. It took about 1 month but last weekend they finally earned the last pieces and started putting it together

    They had figured out that it was a Star Wars puzzle and had lots of fun trying to read letters on the pieces and guessing what the surprise might be. I had hinted the puzzle picture might be a clue but this was more to throw them off since they didn’t know anything about Star Wars Weekend before.

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    Then we flipped the puzzle over

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    :dancer: I don’t know who was more excited, me or the boys. I was really glad to not have to keep this secret any longer! Our first task following the reveal was to make our vacation countdown. I found these really cute countdown chain links and we put together the chain starting at 5 weeks.

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    They get very excited each morning to remove the links!

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    Next, let’s talk Disney food…if that won’t keep you coming back, I don’t know what will
     

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