I Kicked it I Played it and now..Wheeling & Dealing at the WL final 9/9 p87/88

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by MEK, May 15, 2010.

  1. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Well Dis friends and Lurkers alike....It's that time again. Yes indeedy, time for a new trip report. This will be my third in this calendar year and my 5th TR in all. I love TR's. They are a ton of work, but they have allowed me to meet some wonderful Dis friends. I think the nicest people on the boards hang out on the TR threads! And I think meeting Dis friends in person is so fun because everyone is just as nice in person as they are on the internet.

    As luck would have it, several Disers planned a May trip and were at the world during the same timeframe that I was. Let's see - Ellen (Podsnel) and the collective Dismoms stormed the Beach Club, Tracy (manntra) and her friend Sue kicked back at Kidani, and Katie and her SIL camped out at Coronado Springs. So it was fun to run into all these cool Disers during my trip. :thumbsup2

    Trip Details
    Ever since we joined DVC in the fall of 07, trip planning has become a way of life for me. I am always planning my next trip....always thinking ahead, always counting points, always enabling myself and those around me. I started planning this trip in March of 09. Yup - that's right - the wheels started spinning 14 months before the actual trip commenced. Denny and I were visiting his brother and SIL at their beach house. Their kids are all grown and out of the house, so I asked if they would like to visit Disney "next spring" of 2010. They were enthusiastic and since my BIL is a girls highschool basketball coach, we decided the first week of May would work out well for everyone's schedule. I told them I would confirm dates about 8 months out from the trip.

    Well at 8 months things had changed a bit for BIL & SIL....seems they were expecting their second grandchild right around departure time, so they opted out. But not to be deterred, I knew I could enable my friends Chuck and Cathy. Chuck had graciously watched my boys last September while Denny and I hit the world for free dining. I figured taking Chuck to the place of my addiction was his just reward for watching my teenage boys for a few days. I was psyched when Chuck and Cathy agreed to this trip.

    The only thing left to do was to make the reservation. Since we've joined DVC I am on a mission to stay at all of the DVC resorts. I have stayed at Vero Beach, SSR, and Kidani. That left VWL, BC, Boardwalk, BLT, and OKW on my list. I picked VWL because I fell in love with the WL when Denny and I ate at Artist Point in September. After a fabulous dinner, complete with a wine pairing, we walked hand in hand to the beach and stared out on Bay Lake a I declared, "I MUST stay here". The seed was planted, all I had to do was wait for my 7 month window to open.

    And when it did I was on the phone to member services at exactly 9am. I asked the cast member to check VWL, BC, and Boardwalk for a 2BR....in that order. When she came back to the phone and said a 2BR was available at VWL, I did not hesitate. "Check no further", I declared. The reservation was made!

    Making the reservation was the easy part. As the trip got closer it looked like keeping the reservation was proving to be difficult. If you've read my previous TR's you know that I have two teenage sons - Brian 17 and Nicholas 15. I'll be honest - this has not been the best year for Brian. Sometime during the fall I noted that he was becoming increasingly oppositional. Not just oppositional, but defiant and verbally abusive. This has been very difficult for us as a family. There were several moments during the last 6 months when we did not think both of us would be able to go on the trip. We did not think it was safe to leave Brian home, even with adult supervision. He was becoming so difficult and unpredictable that we were afraid for his safety.

    Well, I started doing a lot of research on oppositional defiance in teenagers and I learned something very, very important. Often this disorder is associated with ADD or ADHD. To a lesser degree it is associated with anxiety disorders, depression, or bipolar. I started to really analyze Brian's behavior over the past few years and I realized I needed to have him tested for ADD. Brian has never had problems with his teachers and until this year has had reasonable grades. But I have never felt like he has reached his full potential. In fact, every year I found him getting further and further away from his potential. I always wrote this off to lack of motivation. I finally realized that was I thought was lack of motivation, was something more. So in the weeks that lead up to this trip I was busy having Brian tested and he ultimately started on Adderall.

    I don't think any parent wants to start their children on medication, but sometimes you reach a point where you are desperate. So despite my hesitation, I filled the prescription and Brian started it. Interestingly, Brian admitted to me that he had taken Adderall on two separate occasions before he was actually tested. I was alarmed to find that high school students share this medication. But armed with this knowledge, I realized that I needed to dispense this controlled medicine myself.

    So what happened when Brian started adderall?????

    So far this medication has made a huge difference in his oppositional behavior. He is much less angry and impulsive. He seems happier and better organized. His grades are slowly improving. He's really like a different kid. I know its not a panacea, but it's definately improved his quality of life and things are a lot more peaceful around the house. I don't know what each day will bring, but I feel hopeful that Brian can learn organizational techniques that will help him be successful in his senior year. And its so refreshing to see him calm and content. I hope he wlll now be more receptive to suggestions which help him stay organized and on task.

    So, needless to say, there was quite a bit of stress in our house prior to this trip. Fortunately, a coworker of mine proved to be a God-send. She works nights and is single and she agreed to stay at my house for several of the nights that we would be away. My kids balked, but ultimately the really enjoyed having her here. I knew they would. She's a cool person and she saved me a huge amount of stress and concern.

    So trip planned, ADRS made, Dismeets confirmed, teenager supervision arranged.....the trip was a go. Well....not quite a go, because there was one other little problem that almost caused my carefully laid plans to crumble.

    So....up Next......"I Have What???????":sick::scared::sick:
     
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  3. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Before I do my next update .... I mean, come -on, I gotta leave you in suspense a little longer.....I would like to tell you about a very special purchase I made prior to this trip.

    I bought a very cool DSLR camera. After perusing the boards and researching on the internet, I decided to purchase a Cannon Rebel. I bought the camera on NY's Eve and I had great intentions to practice, practice, practice. Well, I practiced a bit, but not quite as much as I wanted. Despite that....let me share a few of my pre trip practice pics with you.

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  4. 15isto2

    15isto2 DIS Veteran

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    Signing up, I so enjoy your reports
     
  5. kschafer

    kschafer DIS Veteran

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    I'm here Mary Ellen!

    Sorry things were so stressful with Brian! The teen years can be really rough for lots of kids and I am not looking forward to going through them with my own boys!!

    I'm still so bummed about cancelling Ohana with you :guilty: We just hit that wall, you know? A nap, a swim, talking to the kids and a late dinner at the resort was the best revival I could have hoped for.

    Can't wait to hear about your adventures!!
     
  6. dawnbu40

    dawnbu40 DIS Veteran

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    I'm here! :) So glad to see you've started! Glad to hear Brian is coninuing to make progress and I hope the improvements continue! :goodvibes

    The "practice pictures" are beautiful!

    Can't wait for more! popcorn::
     
  7. Charleston Princess

    Charleston Princess DIS Veteran

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    I'm here, Mary Ellen!!! :yay:

    I am so excited you have a new trip report! I can't wait to read all about your stay at the Wilderness Lodge and see all the great pictures I knew you took with your cool new camera! :goodvibes

    Glad to hear the Adderall seems to be working with Brian! What a stressful time for you! :hug:
     
  8. ILuvCrush

    ILuvCrush DIS Veteran

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    Hi Mary Ellen!

    Letting u know I'm 'lurking' along.;)

    Sorry about the stress with Brian, but glad it's looking up!

    Rebel pics areawesome! great job!

    Paula
     
  9. wigdoutdismom

    wigdoutdismom DIS Veteran

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    Some strange sounds are coming from the bedroom so I will sub in for her......(This is Shocker)​
    I was doing my PT stretches...
    you stop it Shocker!
     
  10. wsushocker

    wsushocker DIS Veteran

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    I am here and hoping to interject some humorous pictures to your TR.....​
     
  11. jenjolt

    jenjolt Loves All Things Disney!

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    I'm here MEK!! I really enjoy your TRs!!!

    Glad things are looking up for Brian!!

    What gorgeous pictures!!! You really took some nice ones!!!! YAY for a new camera! I think after the move we'll be looking into a very nice camera and some photography classes for me!!

    Can't wait for more!
     
  12. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Welcome 15isto2 :cool1: Thanks for being the first to join in! So glad to have you along for another TR. I promise drama, heart break, Dismeets, and some interesting pictures!

    Welcome Katie :cool1: So glad to have you join in. I am already really enjoying your TR. No worries about Ohana. I completely understood how you felt that night. I was actually considering canceling the ADR, but I knew my friends would really enjoy it. IT was a long, slow meal and I found myself getting inpatient after the apps were done. I just wanted to get back into the MK and time was ticking.

    I was actually very impressed with how hard core you went on Wednesday. I never could have gone that non-stop without a break, so kudos to you!

    Welcome Dawn! :cool1: Thanks for joining in! And thanks to you and Caitlin for providing insight into the whole ADD diagnosis. Knowing how amazing Caitlin is and her early struggle is really inspiring. I guess my only regret is I didn't get him tested early. Another revealing thing is that I am almost certain that I have some degree of ADD. I think it explains why I still do some of the things I do and why I still possess some of my more annoying traits.

    Glad you like the pics so far. It will be interesting to see how my trip pics look after editing and posting them.

    Welcome CP! :cool1: So glad to have you along. The Wilderness lodge was pretty cool, but I have to admit that I liked Kidani just a tad better. But I did get some extra special pics at the WL that I will reveal at the end of this TR. They are really unique and will be quite a surprise!

    Thanks for the :hug:with Brian. I know you probably experience kids with ADD everyday. I am a little disappointed that I didn't get concrete teacher feedback before this. It's interesting, but now the teachers are writing on his progress report -"has potential to do better work". Duh - I always knew that, but now they are saying it after he was diagnosed. :mad:

    Welcome Paula! :cool1: I was just thinking about you the other day. I know my disboard time has been lacking, but I knew I hadn't seen you around in a while. I figured you have just gotten really sucked into real life with the kids, family, and life.

    I hope you will continue to follow along. I hope I can continue to add some pics that come anywhere close to your level of expertise.

    Thanks for the :thumbsup2 for Brian.

    :rotfl2: OMG...you two crazy kids. Am I gonna have to come down there and separate you????????

    I promise to give you plenty of fodder for outrageous pictures. We had a lot of "OH NO" embarrassing moments starting right with the day of departure, so get those pics warmed up and ready. There were a lot of Denny moments on this trip! :rotfl: And I must confess, I was equally as absent minded at times!
    Welcome Wigd & Shocker! :cool1:I expect that "Mr I Won't Rent a Car" will be along shortly.
     
  13. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Welcome Jen :cool1: I missed ya girl! So glad to have you join in. The camera was fun and I managed to take quite a few pictures despite all the lens changes. I still need the photography class, but that won't be anytime soon!
     
  14. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    I plan to update later today and I think I am caught up on mostly everyone's TR, at least the ones I am subbed to. So before I sign off for this morning, I feel like I should post a few teaser pics from our arrival day. So here goes.....

    Oh Yeah....Where Am I?

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    A Familiar Sight....

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    For Dawn and Caitlin....
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    There's Just something about a Black & White Classic
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    Does a Tripod Help? Well, Yes...I think it does!

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  15. Disneymoon09

    Disneymoon09 DIS Veteran

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    I'm here! I have looked forward to this one. My sister and her family were there at the same time!
     
  16. IluvXU

    IluvXU DIS Veteran

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    I am in too. I love it when I find things beginning. I can only imagine all the worrying and struggles with Brian. Any time medication and diagnosis are happening it is hard. I think as a teacher you sometimes don't put all the pieces together, coming up with different reasons why children perform/act as they do. I have a student this year who I have really struggled to understand... and now after a year I think she is ADD, just not the typical one you see.

    Glad you got the Wl at the seven month window too...
     
  17. SoonerGirl

    SoonerGirl DIS Veteran

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    Hi there, coming over from the post you left on my TR. There were so many of us DISers there that week!

    Sorry to hear about the struggles you were having with your DS, knowing what to do with teenagers is baffling enough, I can't imagine trying to figure out what was going on in your situation. So glad that the medication seems to be helping!

    I have a Canon Rebel as well, but have no idea how to use it :laughing: I really need to take a class, of course I've been saying that for a year and a half....... :rolleyes1
     
  18. kcandbella

    kcandbella DIS Veteran

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    I'm joining in, too! Can't wait to read all about your adventures that week!
     
  19. klacey1

    klacey1 DIS Veteran

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    Joining in! Excited to follow along!
     
  20. Lady Lallie

    Lady Lallie DIS Veteran

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    Yay! Another Mary Ellen trip report!! :banana:

    I'm sorry you had so much stress with Brian leading up to your trip but I am so happy things seem to be looking up now.

    Beauuuuuuutiful shots with your new camera! :thumbsup2
     
  21. aharbin88

    aharbin88 DIS Veteran

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    Hi there! I'm subbing in, too!

    Ooh! That's good to know! I have been trying to figure out how to take good fireworks pictures, so it's good to know that a tripod really helps. Someone else on here had mentioned that they're almost required for really good night pics, if I'm remembering correctly.

    So, if you don't mind me asking, what all is involved in the testing for ADD? Was it rough for Brian?
     

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