"Mommy, is this Disney World?" - *We're Back!* October 1-9 2011 PTR

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by amberdburke, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Welcome to my very first PTR! We are headed to the World for our first family trip October 1-9, 2011. Although I have been to Disney dozens of time since my childhood, this is the first trip I've ever planned and I'm a little obsessed. Hope you enjoy reading about our plans, our saving strategies, and the up-to-date excitement! My extended family is tired of hearing about our trip, so I'm happy to have another outlet!

    Cast of Characters:

    Me - 29-year-old Daycare Provider. After teaching for 7 years, we moved from FL to IN and I decided to stay home with my daughter. I make up some extra money through my daycare, and this has been the main source of our Disney funding. I love being a wife and a Mom, and I am in the happiest place I have ever been in life.

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    Patrick - Car saleman by trade, but musician at heart. A very loving Father and Husband and great fun to be around. His first trip to Disney was going to MK with me on our first date (we met online). We honeymooned at EPCOT, and enjoyed APs for several years before moving to Indiana.

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    Paisley - Darling daughter and Disney fanatic. Although she was at the World several times before her 1st birthday, this is the first trip where she knows what's going on. She will be almost 3 by the time of her trip. Her favorite princess is Snow White, and she loves Handy Manny and Little Einsteins. This trip is all about her!

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    TABLE OF CONTENTS:
    Cast of Characters
    Our Trip Plan in a Nutshell *Major Update 9/3*
    Budget *Major Update 7/8*
    How'd You Get That PTR Title?
    What to Wear? *AK Shirt Update 7/28*

    Pre-Bought Souviners
    Free Gift Cards!*Updated 8/2*

    Life Update - Fourth of July

    Dollar Store Deals - Items for Long Lines!
    Food for the Condo/ADR's
    Life Update - The County Fair
    Life Update - The First Day of School
    Indy DISMeet
    CM Appreciation Cards
     
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  3. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    I started planning this trip in December 2010. We have one week of family vacation a year, and since last year DH and I went on a cruise without DD, we decided to make a trip about her.

    When DH and I lived in FL, we always went to MNSSHP on our anniversary (October 7th), and we decided to continue this tradition by planning our trip for the week of our anniversary. We also picked this time because DD turns 3 at the end of November, so we wanted to make this our last trip with a "free" child :goodvibes

    Here's the Plan:

    Saturday, October 1: Leave at 7PM when DH gets home from work. I will have the car packed and filled with gas, and DD will have already had her bath and put into her pjs. We are planning to drive until about Midnight, which should put us in the Nashville, TN area.

    Sunday, October 2: Leave hotel no later than 6AM. Check-in to Orange Lake Resort no later than 6PM. If we have time, stop at local grocery store for perishables. Garden Grove ADR at 8PM.

    Monday, October 3: Get to DHS for Rope Drop. ADR for Character Lunch at Hollywood & Vine at 1PM. Return to condo for dinner.

    Tuesday, October 4: Get to AK for Rope Drop. ADR for lunch at Rainforest Cafe at 1PM. Return to condo for dinner.
    [​IMG] *Change of Plans - We have decided to make this another MK Day. We are not going to aim for ropedrop, but get there around noon-time (eat lunch at condo) then eat dinner at a QS and stay for fireworks.*

    Wednesday, October 5: MK Day. Breakfast ADR at Crystal Palace at 8:15AM. Paisley's first haircut at Harmony Barbershop at 10:30AM. Return to condo mid-day for rest and food. Return to MK no later than 7PM for evening parade and fireworks. *Since we are doing two MK days now, we are going to keep the plans, but stay until we are finished and eat dinner at the condo. We won't be watching Wishes again tonight.*


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    Thursday, October 6: Get to EPCOT for Rope Drop. Lunch ADR at Biergarten at 1PM. Return to condo mid-day for rest and food. Return to EPCOT no later than 7PM for Illuminations.
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    Friday, October 7: SLEEP IN!!! Head to DTD. Lunch at Earl of Sandwich. Return to condo for nap, swim, dinner. Head to MK for MNSSHP. *Since we are now skipping AK (and our Rainforest Cafe ressies), we will now be eating at Rainforest Cafe at DTD instead of EOS (We have RC giftcards, so this meal is pretty much free). MNSSHP is still up in the air, depending on our budget.*

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    Saturday, October 8: SLEEP IN AGAIN!!! Begin drive home :sad2:. Drive to Atlanta to spend the night.

    Sunday, October 9: Finish drive to Indiana. Start planning next DW trip :lmao:
     
  4. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Everything I have been planning goes into this Disney binder that I made - I can't imagine how I'd stay organized without it!
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    So here's our budget for our upcoming trip. At least this is the budget that I gave DH (it doesn't include things that I have bought pre-trip for souvieners, clothes, etc).;)

    • [*]Condo (Thanks to Gigi) - $179
      [*]Gas (Estimated with AAA) - $500
      [*]Tickets (Undercover Tourist - 4 Day no Park Hopper) - $476.00
      [*]MNSSHP Tickets (AAA) - $140.00
      [*]Tolls (Use Saved Change)
      [*]Hotel to FL (After Best Western GC) - $15
      [*]Hotel to Indiana (Use Priceline for ATL) - $85.00
      [*]Meals in Park (Use Disney GC) - $207.00
      [*]Tips - $52.00
      [*]Photopass - $100
      [*]Souvenirs - $200.00
      [*]Parking (5 days @$14.00) - $70.00
      [*]Harmony Barbershop - $20.00
      [*]Snacks at Park (Use Kellogg's Visa GC) - $70.00
      [*]Food While Driving - $100.00
      [*]Food for Hotel - $50.00


    Total : $2600.00


    Here is the breakdown of our in-park meals:

    • [*]Garden Grove Character Dinner (with Restaurant.com) - $50.00
      [*]Hollywood & Vine Character Lunch - $60.00
      [*]Rainforest Cafe (Use $25 GC) - $25.00
      [*]Crystal Palace Charcter Breakfast (Use $50 Disney GC) - Just pay for tip
      [*]Biergarten Lunch - $52.00
      [*]Earl of Sandwich - $20.00


    UPDATE - 7/9/2011

    So, after finding out last night that my one main source of income has been cut-off permanently and immediately, I had to do some reworking of our budget. As of right now, this is what we have already paid for (or saved money for), plus we have lots of gift cards not factored in that we will use for food when driving, snacks in the park, etc.
    1. Condo
    2. Gas
    3. 4-Day Park Tickets
    4. Hotel to FL
    5. Tips
    6. Food for Hotel

    Should the worst happen and I am unable to replace this income before our trip, I have made tentative changes:
    1. Cancel MNSSHP :(
    2. Cancel Garden Grove Character Dinner and Biergarten and replace with Akershus Breakfast
    3. Cut Souviner Budget to $100
    4. Cut Food-While-Driving Budget to $50

    If we make these changes, and add in what my family members have said they want to contribute to our trip (Grandma - $180 to cover condo/Aunt - $200 for meals), we only need to save $300 by October. This I can do. I feel much better now, and although I will greatly miss MNSSHP, DD will never know the difference :woohoo:
     
  5. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    So here's the story about the title of my PTR. We have been prepping Paisley for all the characters she is going to meet at DW. She talks about it often, and sometimes she even throws in the odd character (such as Cookie Monster) and then she says, "No....Cookie Monster doesn't live at Disney silly!."

    Lately she's been super interested in reading the Clifford books. Well last weekend we had a Meet and Play at the Park courtesy of our local PBS station. So DD met Clifford.

    [​IMG]

    Afterwards we also met Curious George. DD was very quiet and all the sudden she said, "Mommy, is this Disney World?" Poor kid was so confused because she knew that we were just downtown. I said, "No baby, this is not Disney World. Remember, we are going to see the princesses at Disney World."

    I can't imagine how she's going to react once we are really at Disney :yay:
     
  6. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    I made a recent decision that we should somewhat match at Disney. My husband was super thrilled ;). Instead of being "matchy-matchy," I decided that we will dress in themes.

    DHS Day - Toy Story Theme
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    I got DH the TS Alien shirt at Target, my Mr. Potato Head shirt came from Ebay, as did Paisley's Jessie shirt.

    AK Day - Animal Print Mickey/Minnie Heads - I ended up making my own. Here is the cost breakdown...

    Shirts (50% Off at Hobby Lobby) - $5.75
    Handkerchiefs - $1.98
    Thread - $1.00

    So, 3 shirts for under $9.00.

    [​IMG]

    MK Day - Mickey/Minnie Theme
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    All of these came from the after-Valentine's Day clearance at Walmart. I paid $2.50 each!

    Here are some sweatshirts/hoodies in case it gets chilly at night
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    EPCOT Day - Snow White Theme
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    DH's Grumpy shirt came from Target, my Snow White shirt came from Ebay, and Paisley's Snow White shirt is from Old Navy.
     
  7. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Since Paisley is only 2 years old, she hasn't really gotten to the point where she picks things out at the store to buy, so we have bought most of her "souviners" before we go. We plan on giving them to her as a surprise each morning. Then, when we are there, she can pick out one or two very special things to take home.

    When We Arrive - I will go into the condo first and set these items out and then I will come out and get Paisley and DH so she will think Mickey left them for her. I got these when the Disney Store had a special.
    [​IMG]

    Monday Morning: Toddler Backpack from Babies 'R Us, Autograph Book from Etsy, Little Einsteins Ball from Babies 'R Us, and a Minnie Sucker from Walmart.
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    Tuesday Morning: Ariel and Flounder stuffed animals that I found in perfect shape from a consignment store. Mickey Mouse shaped suckers from Walmart.
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    Wednesday Morning: Belle plush from a garage sale, Winnie the Pooh book from Goodwill, Princess Lunchbox from Walmart, and Mickey suckers from Walmart. Light-up Princess Spinner from Walgreens for Wishes.
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    Thursday Morning: Planning on giving Paisley a lanyard with the pre-purchased pins today. I think she is too little to understand trading, so I'm just buying her a few pins that she will like - Here is the Handy Manny pin that we have bought. Also Disney candy from Walmart and glow bracelets from the Dollar Tree for Illuminations.
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    [​IMG]
    Here is the lanyard I got for $1 at Party City and this is a Little Eisteins pin we bought for her.

    Friday Morning: Just Mr. Potato Head. I can't wait to fill a box at Downtown Disney.
    [​IMG]
    [
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  8. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Here are some of the gift cards that we have gotten for free to apply to our trip.

    From RewardTV: (Each is worth $5 and we will be using on our trip up and down) BP, Exxon Mobil, Taco Bell, CVS, and Dunkin Donuts.
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    *Update - Just Received a $5 Burger King card from Reward TV*
    [​IMG]

    These are other cards from Misc. Sources: 2 Starbucks GC (from Swagbucks - Total of $30), Best Western from my husband's health insurance (worth $75 - will use for the hotel on our drive down), and a Disney GC (Worth $50 - Reward from DH's credit card)
    [​IMG]


    $30 Worth of Visa GC from the Kellogg's Cars Promotion
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    $25 Rainforest Cafe GC from MyPoints
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    $10 CVS card from MyPoints and $10 BP Gas Card from MySurvey
    [​IMG]

    We are still waiting on more $5 cards from RewardTV.
     
  9. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    We decided to order our tickets from Undercover Tourist since we will be staying offsite. We bought 2 adult tickets (since DD will still be 2!). They are 4 Day Tickets with No Park Hopper. We bought them before the ticket increase :cool1:
    [​IMG]

    We are also buying tickets for MNSSHP for October 7th, but I haven't ordered those yet.
     
  10. ZFamily5

    ZFamily5 DIS Veteran

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    Subbing! Paisley is soooooo cute! I love the themed shirts and I can't wait to read more about your plans! :thumbsup2
     
  11. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Yay! Someone finally posted! I was getting sad. However, I love reading about my trip, so if other's don't, that's ok :rotfl:
     
  12. Disneyfreak616

    Disneyfreak616 DIS Veteran

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    I'm here! :wave:

    Your plans sound great! Love that Snow White shirt! :)

    Can't wait to hear more! :yay:
     
  13. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    So excited you're here!
     
  14. ZFamily5

    ZFamily5 DIS Veteran

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    :rotfl2::rotfl::laughing:
     
  15. jessily

    jessily DIS Veteran

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    sounds like a fun trip:thumbsup2 Your daughter is adorable!
     
  16. Donaldswife

    Donaldswife DIS Veteran

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    I stumbles on this report, we live in Greenwood too! :goodvibes

    Your DD is adorable, can't wait to hear how your trip goes!
     
  17. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    That's so funny that you live here! Are you going to the DisMeet over Labor Day?
     
  18. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    Just had to share - 3 Months from today and we will be leaving on our trip! :cool1:
     
  19. LutheranChick82

    LutheranChick82 I love Disney!

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    I think the idea of giving her presents each day is a great idea! This will be such a special thing for her! My DH and I stayed on property when we went in November and I was so excited when we got our towel animal! I am 28 and it still excited me, my DH thought I was crazy :lmao: He's a bigger Disney addict than I am!

    I can't wait to read all about your DD reactions as she meets all the wonderful characters at Disney.
     
  20. Donaldswife

    Donaldswife DIS Veteran

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    Unfortunately no, we are going to Disney World for the weekend! :banana: We have some Southwest credits that expire in October so we thought we had better use them up. Funny, because I wanted to go to the Indy meet last year and my DD and I ended up taking a Mommy/daughter trip to Disney for the weekend too!

    Can't wait to hear what else you have planned, and how everything else turns out. :goodvibes
     
  21. amberdburke

    amberdburke Paisley's Mama

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    I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday weekend. We had some family visiting from D.C. and every second was jam packed with fun. Hope you enjoy the photos - We are officially less than 3 months from our trip!

    Here is Patrick and I at the Indy Rock and Roll BBQ Fest - We were watching the Gin Blossoms.
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    Fireworks in Our Backyard - I was nervous because Paisley kept wanting to hold the sparkler.
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    Yummy Red, White, and Blue Strawberries - From the Disney Family Fun Magazine!
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    Watching the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra at Symphony on the Prairie. When the played the 1812 Overature, Paisley said, "It's the Mean Queen song from Little Einsteins!"
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]B]
     

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