Minnie and Mickey and Harry!! Oh My! Chase's Wish Trip 6/23-6/29

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by wish_upon_a_star35, Jul 6, 2010.

  1. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    I've finally got a chance to catch my breath! So I figured I'd start our TR! Before I get started I'd like to thank all of the wonderful people here on Disboards. You guys really helped make our trip so much more special. After our trip to Disney last year I had a lot of time to think about some of the things I would do differently if we got a chance to go back and with the help of so many knowledgeable people we got the chance to do just that! All of the advice and tips helped us tremendously! And another big thank you to the wonderful people from the BIG Give group! You all really made our trip EVEN more special! EVERYTHING came in so handy. The gum, the goodies for the plane ride and of course the lovely customs all added to magic of this trip!

    So, I'll just give a quick background on my family! My name is Leah, I am a 35 year old single mother to three lovely children. My oldest daughter Courtney is 14 and very creative, talented and of course a bit of a drama queen at times! :lmao: Next my youngest two children that I adopted from the fostercare system. Selah age 5, she is my firecracker! Very fiesty, active, sweet and loving. And Chase age 3, extremely cute and loveable, very ACTIVE and extremely FUNNY! Then there's Nana! Our comedienne who loves to give hugs and kisses!!

    Last year my daughter Selah got a wish trip. She LOVES the Disney Princesses anything that has to do with Castles AND LOVES rides so naturally her wish was to go to Disney World. Selah was born 3 months premature. She was 1 pound 8 ounces at birth and almost did not make it. Her lungs were not fully developed and have caused her many, many problems since her birth. I found out about Make A Wish through a friend of the family and when Selah got approved for her wish we were so happy for her. We set off for her wish 2-09. The weather was beautiful and her wish was great! Now we didn't know much about Disney then. So I made no plans at all. We just played each day as it came and that was fine. However there were several things that we did not get a chance to do.

    Which brings me to my little guy Chase. He was also born prematurely by 6 weeks. He wasn't as tiny as Selah but had a ton of medical problems ranging from a problem with his pyloric valve that caused him to have extremely horrible episodes of vomitting and choking, a heart murmer, muscle tone issues, balance issues, vision problems and his lungs were not fully developed either. Chase was also born addicted to street drugs so a lot of his behavior problems reflect that. I got a call (I believe it was February of this year) from Make a Wish saying that his doctor's office thought it would be awesome if Chase could get a wish. I was humbled to say the least (the first of many times throughout this whole process) I would have never guessed that he was eligible because Selah got her own wish. So we had to figure out what it was that Chase would like!

    Now Chase is a HUGE Thomas the Train fan so I thought he would want something around that. He also LOVES anything that has to do with transportation. He LOVES planes and helicopters, motorcycles and boats. But when the wish granters came to the house he did not hesitate to tell them that he wanted to go back to Disney World!!! I was very shocked and happy at the same time. Because I knew that we could work together to make his wish special to him.

    So the process began. I was directed to this board by a nice lady (tinytreasures) who posts on another board that I frequent. I am so greatful that she directed me here!

    While I was finding out new things and obsessively reading many PTR's and TR's I thought it would be a cool idea if I kept the wish a secret from my oldest daughter! Now in the begining she knew that Chase got a wish but had no idea where it was going to be or when.

    I got contacted by heathersue from the disboutique board about being a Big
    Give family so I knew I was going to eventually tell Courtney but still decided to keep the date to myself!

    I am sooo glad I did too! She asked me a few times but I never told. I packed all of our suitcases and planned the whole trip behind her back! It was one of the hardest things I've ever done as we are sooo close and many times I just wanted to share some of the details with her. It wasn't until our first Big Give package arrived that I told her that we were going to Disney! She was so happy, but still clueless on the date.

    Fast forward to the night before we left!

    We stayed the night over my mom's house. I told Courtney to pack an overnight bag and off we go! We grab a bite to eat and take it back to my mom's. Me and my mom are smiling at each other behind the kids backs and doing little happy dances when they were not looking!! The morning of our trip we wake up and get dressed. We head out to one last stop at the bank and grabbed some delicious McDonald's (I'm being extremely sarcastic here) breakfast. Once we get back to my mom's we had about 30 minutes before our ride was due to pick us up. All of our lugguage was under my mom's bed and her's was in the spare bedroom closet. I told her to take the kids around the back to play and I had to drag all of it down stairs to the living room. Once I finished of course we couldn't let the kids back in the house so I prayed that no one had to use the bathroom! :rotfl: We were sitting on the porch when what do I see coming up the street? A big black shiny luxury van. As the van passed my mom's house and started to back up I turned to Courtney and said: "Well, well, well...what do we have here? It looks like our ride is here because the Walker's are going to DISNEY WORLD!!!!!" Courtney could not believe it!! The kids were so excited and jumping for joy! I rushed them in the house and switched their shirts into the Make a wish shirts that we got and the fun was just starting!!!

    Here is a picture of our ride!

    [​IMG]

    Last year we got picked up in a limo...but I have to be honest, I actually enjoyed this much better. The ride was smoothe and we had so much room and the seats were sooo comfy!!! Everyone agreed this was a great way to travel!

    Once we arrived at the Pittsburgh International airport we were greeted by the BEST greeter EVER!! I did not take a picture of him but he was awesome. He took us inside to check our bags came through the security check point with us. I thanked him a million times for this because that whole ordeal gave me much stress and nightmares. Selah and Chase both have sensory issues (Chase's are EXTREMELY hard to deal with) and I knew that this could potentially be a big problem. I nonchalantly mentioned it to our wish granters and we must have gotten our first dose of pixie dust sprinkled on us! After we made it through the security part with only a tiny meltodown. He took us to pick up our travel money. Make A Wish is extremely generous with the travel funds which really helped to ensure that Chase could have whatever he wanted on HIS trip! We got traveler's checks...which I will admitt I have never used. But I REALLY LOVED them! After that he came up to our boarding area and actually waited with us. Another Godsend! I was able to grab the kids a quick snack and relax for a few minutes. Chase and Selah made an instant friend with a little boy named Stephan. He was the cutest one year old I've ever seen! His mother was really awesome and was really great with the kids joking with them and telling them how much fun we were all going to have.

    When I was heading back to give the kids their snack a lady stopped me who actually works for Make a Wish and hugged me and told me to have a wonderful trip with our family. I was really excited by this time and so happy that Chase was happy.

    Our greeter was able to get us on the plane and show Chase the cockpit and he left us! We got situated and were ready for take off! I sat with Selah and My mom, Courtney and Chase sat together. Chase was content with the portable DVD player and his new Thomas movies. And Selah was overly happy with all of her BIG Give goodies!!

    Here is a picture of the kids at the airport with a statue of Franko Harris!

    [​IMG]

    I sat back on the flight and thought about our upcoming trip and all of the plans that I made for us and really hoped that we would have a great time!!!

    Here is a picture of Selah enjoying herself on the ride!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. curlyq

    curlyq Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2003
    Messages:
    36
    Wow. Awesome start. Can't wait to read more about your trip. Sounds like you had lots of fun.
     
  4. rcq925

    rcq925 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    Messages:
    397
    Awesome start! Can't wait to read the rest and see pictures! Glad you had a wonderful trip and you are home safe and sound!!!:goodvibes
     
  5. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    Thanks guys!! It was an awesome trip! I am so glad that we went...and sooo sad it's over :(
     
  6. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    So we right before we land in Orlando the pilot comes on the speaker and says that he'd like to say a few things. He tells the passengers that there is a very special family aboard with an AWESOME little guy named Chase! He tells them that we are on a Wish trip to Disney and the Whole cabin claps and looks for the wish child. Chase is laughing and giggling with delight! He could believe that the pilot said his name! People were coming up to us wishing us a wonderful trip and giving Chase hi fives!

    We get off the plane and head to baggage claim and see our greeters! Not sure why we had two, but with two very active little ones I was forever greatful for the extra set of hands! We wait for what seems like EVER for our bags to come off of the carosel and then we are off to get our rental. Last year we got a mini van I LOVED it because it was so spaciaous and comfy. This year they used a different rental company (National) and I didn't see too many vans. They actually told us to take our pick. Of course Courtney sees a Hummer and is immediately begging :rotfl: I quickly say no way!! (Thinking about the gas issue) and we all agree on a Jeep Laredo! Perfect!! We head out for the village without getting lost! And we are all very excited when we see the familiar Walmart and not too long after the BUNNY Sign!!! Wooo Hoo!!

    Check in was a breeze! The kids decide to ride the car while I get us all checked in.

    [​IMG]

    Courtney and Selah ride in the cart with the lady from GKTW and the rest of us follow in the jeep to our villa...our new home for the next week!

    She takes a picture of all of us outside our new place!

    [​IMG]

    Once inside she gives us the standard info on our villa, the do's and dont's etc. After she leaves we decide to go grab some ice cream before we unpack because by this time we were starving!!!!

    [​IMG]

    Selah and Nana enjoying ice cream on our first day at the Village!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    After we ate ice cream we went back to the villa and unpacked until it was time for me to go to the orientation. Once I got to orientation I did notice a few new things that they'd added. The airplane rides were something new. I think that would have been awesome for Chase if he was a little older! Orientation was only about 30 minutes but it was definitely packed! After orientation I grabbed a few movies and headed back to the villa. We ordered Katies kitchen to eat inside of our villa and just relaxed for a few minutes. We ran to Walmart to get a few extras. Some pediasure for Selah, and a few odds and ends and then we went back to our new home! We put a little bubble bath in the kids jacuzzi tub. Chase was most definitely NOT a fan. He hoppped his little self right on out of there so quick I couldn't believe it!!! :rotfl: But the girls LOVED it!!! We were all so tired that sleep was among us. We decided to have Courtney and Chase Share the kids room. Selah slept in the Master bedroom with me because she has sleep issues. And my mom was okay with the roll out in the living room. She always says that she can not fall asleep without the tv on and she wakes up at the crack of dawn 4 a.m. for coffee every morning and didn't want to disturb the rest of us!

    Very sleepy kids here!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    Here's another picture of my family boarding our luxury van/bus thingy lol

    [​IMG]

    So that was our first day in a nutshell. It was really a wonderful day. The Florida heat was unreal and would prove to be extremely challenging in the days to come. We made the best of it though but I will honestly say that I don't think I will ever vacation in Florida in the summer ever again :lmao: It was waaaay too hot for my winter baby self and it was definitely hard on the kids.

    Stay tuned for the next installment! Day one of 2 Universal days! :woohoo:
     
  8. iheartpluto

    iheartpluto Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Messages:
    297
    What a wonderful beginning!! Can't wait to read more! :)
     
  9. cajunfan

    cajunfan Welcome to the DIS where wishes come true.

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
    Messages:
    1,787
    Great start! I am loving all the pictures. I can't wait to read and see more!

    Lynn
     
  10. HeatherSue

    HeatherSue Join Date: March 2004

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    Messages:
    3,250
    Oh my gosh, what a wonderful surprise!! I'm so glad you pulled it off! I am all teary reading about the moment you told the kids you were going!

    I was giggling about you and your mom doing the happy dance when the kids weren't looking, too. :rotfl: So, you've made me laugh and you've made me cry!

    How awesome of the pilot to make a special announcement!

    I've said it before and I'll say it again. You have SUCH a beautiful family! I showed Sawyer (my 4 year old son) the picture of you all in front of the villa and he immediately noticed Selah's killer whale! ;) He LOVES killer whales!

    Chase looks so sweet all cuddled up with his Mickey in bed.

    I love your writing style and I can't wait to read more!
     
  11. maroo

    maroo DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2008
    Messages:
    8,027
    Awesome start!!! :)

    I am so excited to read about your trip! :thumbsup2

    I linked you in the wish trippers thread, so hopefully they will come over and say hello!

    Can't wait for the next update! :)
     
  12. J'sMum

    J'sMum Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    Messages:
    375
    I am loving your trip report can't wait to read more about it ! ty for sharing and how awesome is that with the announcement on the plane, and I agree with you, no way on the hummer. :laughing:
     
  13. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    Thank you! I really enjoyed writing yesterday. And I am so glad that I kept a little journal during our trip. It's helping me remember little things that I didn't want to forget!

    I did pretty good with the pictures this time around. I am really proud of myself for getting the photopass pictures. I totally slept that last time we went!

    Heather I coudln't believe that my plan actually worked and you have NO idea how good it felt to finally be able to exhale!!! It was like a huge weight was lifted. I almost slipped up sooo many times!! Chase did really well falling asleep that first night...on other nights..not so well LOL!

    Maroo thanks sooo much for linking my TR to the Wish trippers thread! I know when I first started coming to this board I was sooo excited to read through each PTR and TR!!! It really made my day to read all of the lovely things and to see so many beautiful families!

    I was really shocked when I heard the announcement! The flight attendants were awesome as well. They were so nice and attentive to our needs. I even had to take Selah to bathroom and it was my very first time using the bathroom on an airplane and I really had to go. I really didn't feel like walking Selah all the way back to our seat and bumping everyone on the way just so I could go. They must have seen the exasperation on my face :rotfl: they offered to keep her busy while I used the bathroom. When I came out she had some stickers and an extra snack! :goodvibes
     
  14. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    So our first "official" day of Chase's wish trip began early in the morning for me! I got up at 6 a.m. filled up my water bottle and headed out for an early morning walk! It was already hazy and humid and the lizards were everywhere! This would be a huge deal as the days go on because Chase is a bug/insect/animal fanatic!!! It was very peaceful walking around soaking in the quietness and the beauty of the village. I did run into several people who were out either on their porches having coffee ir getting their morning walk/run in. I even saw quite a few staff people out and about!

    I finished up at about 7:15 and immediately began to get the kids up and ready. I figured that we could eat breakfast at the Gingerbread house and go on to Universal!

    So we head over to breakfast and since we were there at exactly 8:00 I decided that we should try and get our pictures in with the Disney characters! What a great idea that turned out to be! I realized all throughout this trip that the early bird truly gets the worm. We were the FIRST people in line to meet the Disney Characters!!!


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    So as you can see were off to a great start!

    We finish up with all of the pictures and go inside for breakfast! The "special eggs" were delicious. They were scrambled with cheese and peppers! I had those and some mandarin oranges and the little ones had pancakes and bananas! Courtney's eyes were way bigger than her stomach so she had a little of everything and regretted after she had a bellyache!! :laughing: My mom loves the sausage gravy so she had that. We were all talking and laughing and so happy that we got the kids autograph books signed! Another thing that we did not do when we went on our trip last year!
     
  15. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    So we get to Universal Studios and I have to tell you guys that have never been there but plan to go, there is a lot of walking before you even get to the park!!! I mean A LOT!!!! So just be prepared! And also since we all have very bad memories in our family, we took pictures of where we parked :rotfl: I'm laughing now but it was serious!!! I can't imagine forgetting where you parked your car with two cranky little ones and a snarky teenager! lol

    On our way in I stopped at this dining booth and made ressies for Bubba Gumps restaurant! And I am soo glad that I did!

    So our first stop once we got inside of USIOA was Seuss Landing! This park is beautiful! So bright and colorful and really kid friendly! We rode all of the rides in the park and the CM were very great and well aware of what to do with button! We did encounter quite a few throughout our vacation who were clueless. And instead of panicking or saying "nevermind, forget it" I would always just go find another one! I was determined to have a great trip!

    Universal is awesome in that their main attraction rides have a child swap area! We used that and it worked out great! I didn't know about this on our last trip. So Courtney got to ride the Hulk and Spiderman! We swapped out and got the little ones some snacks to keep them happy.

    Now, Chase was very nervous, clingy and withdrawn from the moment that we got into the parks. I noticed that he wasn't his normal cheery self at all. We did get him a stroller and he didn't really want to get out of it at first. I am pretty sure that his senses were very overloaded.

    We all took turns riding the Pteranodon Flyers but Chase was having none of that!

    We decided the heat was wearing us down and since it was close to our ressie time we decided to head back for lunch!

    We were pretty hungry because all we had to eat after breakfast was some popcorn! Universal has refills on their souvenier cups and popcorn buckets! We used that a great deal! I got the kids a souvenier Spongebob bottle and they loved it!

    Here are some pictures of our lunch at Bubba Gumps!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Now we had an AWESOME waitress by the name of Courtney :lovestruc who was wonderful. She was very upbeat and bubbly and told us that we were to change our Sign on our table from Run Forest Run to Stop Forest Stop if we needed ANYTHING at all. And someone would come right over to take care of us. She also told us that she would be back after she placed our orders to play some Forest Gump Trivia! Once she came back she asked us many questions pertaining to the movie! I got them all right (I am a HUGE Tom Hanks fan) and she told me what I had won! Unlimited hi fives and drink re-fills :lmao:

    The food was really good (I also love seafood) and it got crowded really fast. Chase was having a mini meldown and was laying down beside me on the bench. He didn't eat much at first because of the noise level and the crowd. I finally got him to wear his hat (his OT suggested that when he is feeling overwhelmed we try to get him to wear it) and he wore it for about 30 minutes. That was just long enough for him to eat and for us to get out of there!

    The manager came over to us and made sure that we were enjoying our food and shook the wish child's hand! He said that he really has a soft spot in his heart for Make a whish because he grew up with a very sick brother. He got a little choked up so of course we all got a little choked up as well!

    After our terrific meal we headed back to IOA to visit the Wizzarding World of Harry Potter for our first of two visits!!
     
  16. HeatherSue

    HeatherSue Join Date: March 2004

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    Messages:
    3,250
    I missed your comment about the heat. I hear yah! We went in October last year when they had record breaking heat. The heat index got up to 115 degrees!! It was absolutely miserable!! I can't take heat like that either. We also went in February last year when they had record breaking cold of 30-something degrees. We just can't catch a break weather-wise! :rotfl:

    Oh my gosh!! That picture of Chase and Selah running towards Pluto is absolutely priceless!!! Look at their faces!!
     
  17. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    I forgot to add that Selah started getting extremely restless and began playing with the Forest sign and changed it and sure enough a waiter came right over to see what he could get us! :rotfl: I really wish we had this restaurant in Pittsburgh!
     
  18. wish_upon_a_star35

    wish_upon_a_star35 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    I love that picture of them too! People always say that small kids are too young to take to Disney World because they won't remember anything. But I always disagree. This was the perfect time (despite the weather) they love and appreciate the magic of Disney. The light in their eyes and the laughter should be bottled and sold! You can never get that back!!! And that is why you take as many pictures and videos as possible! They will remember something about the trip I'm sure! I went to Disney when I was small and I don't remember every detail but I do remember a few things!
     
  19. cantwaittoseemickey

    cantwaittoseemickey DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Messages:
    1,322
    HIII I made it whew!! Dont see how I missed it on the Wish trippers thread but I did:) Anyways sound like you had a great first few days! Love the van! And the pixie dust that is already occuring!!! Great update!
     
  20. yinyanggirls

    yinyanggirls DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2009
    Messages:
    1,872
    Wow, you are on a roll!!! Sounds like a good travel day and a great first park day! The meltdowns are inevitable. I also LOVE the PLuto pic of the kids running. I'd frame it. :thumbsup2
     
  21. rcq925

    rcq925 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    Messages:
    397
    What a great first day at Universal so far!!! My hubby and I went there in like 1998 before kids and have not been back since, so I am excited to go there again on the wish trip! Love all of the pictures with the characters at GKTW, you got some great ones!!! Keep up the TR, I am loving it!:goodvibes
     

Share This Page