Our 2009 GRAND trip to WDW

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by loralie, May 25, 2009.

  1. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    This is my first trip report so please bear with me. We had been to WDW twice before but the last time was in 2005. We planned a trip for 2007 but had to cancel it. When the Buy 4 get 3 deal came out combined with my DH getting a bigger Christmas bonus than we were expecting, we had to jump at the chance to stay at the Grand Floridian. We were in WDW May 15 to May 22, 2009.
    Let me introduce you to the cast of characters you will be reading about.

    Me - I am a 39 year old wife and mother of 2 boys who are 13 and 11 years old. I LOVE going to Disney World and think planning the trip is half the fun. I am so happy I have found the DIS. It makes me realize that I am not the only crazy one who is obsessed with WDW. J

    DH – 43 years old and loves his family very much but not as big of a fan of WDW as I am. He wants to make his family happy so even though he hates to fly, he agreed that WDW would be the place for our family vacation. One condition…I had to agree that the next family vacation will be a cruise that leaves close enough from our house so he will not have to get on a plane. No problem!

    DS13 – He is graduating from Jr. High School in June and he loves WDW almost as much as I do. He still likes character meals but is there more for the food. He was very happy we did the basic dining plan.

    DS11 – He is a loveable boy who loves his family but does not get excited about WDW like his brother. This is our 3rd trip and he actually said “Been there, Done that”. He loves it when he gets there but does not really show his excitement. He was most excited about going to Japan in Epcot to buy some more Bakugan toys.

    Here is a picture of the 4 of us in front of the castle
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    This report will also have some before and after pics. Back on our 2005 trip to WDW I was at my heaviest weight. Since then I have lost over 60 pounds and I tried to recreate some of the pics from the last trip. Seeing the before pics after my 2005 trip really made me realize how overweight I was and started me on my weight loss journey.

    Here is a pic of me waiting in the airport to go to WDW in 2005
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    And here is a pic of me waiting in the airport to go to WDW in 2009
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    That’s it for now…I will post the first day soon.

    Loralie
     
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  3. mindystar

    mindystar DIS Veteran

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    Congrats on writing your first TR! And congrats on the weight loss too :thumbsup2 I'll be leaving for the Grand in four days, but have so much o do between now and then, but will definitely squeeze in some time to check out your tr:surfweb: Ahhh, what we can do for a Disney fix, even if we're headed out that way shortly ;)
    Can't wait for more :)
     
  4. BlueSkies

    BlueSkies ~GF Gal.....

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    Loralie Great start to your TR!!!:thumbsup2 And congratualtions on the weight loss..you look terrific!:) and I'm sure feel terrific too....

    Looking foward to reading more about your trip! BTW love your family photo...and the pics that you posted on the GF FAQ...:flower3:
     
  5. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    Yeah...I am so glad you posted. I was getting worried no one would want to read my report. :eek: You are going to love the Grand Floridian and you leave in 4 days...how exciting. It goes by so fast. I wish I was back there. Thanks for reading along.

    The GF FAQ gave me so much great info before my trip. I will try to post more pics on there a little later today. Thanks for the kind words and for reading along.

    I will try to get day one posted today.

    Loralie
     
  6. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    We had a nice smooth flight on Jet Blue to Orlando. We got on the magical Express bus and had a nice ride to the Grand Floridian. I was a little disappointed it was a yellow Mears bus but it still showed the video so the kids were happy. The Grand Floridian was the last stop. First stop was the Wilderness Lodge, then the Contemporary then finally the Grand Floridian. We were the only family going to the Grand Floridian that morning so we had the bus to ourselves and chatted with the bus driver. We had used online check-in before we left so a nice CM met us at the bus and took us right over to the online check-in desk. Our room was not ready since it was only around 11:00 am so we left our carry-on luggage with bell services and decided to start using our dining plan and go to Gasparilla Grill for lunch. Since they have the arcade in there the boys played for a little while and DH and I got a chance to just sit and talk and marvel at how beautiful the Grand Floridian really is.
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    After lunch it was still early and the weather was nice, we decided to get the boys their bathing suits from the carry-on luggage and let them go swimming. They enjoyed the beach pool and the slide very much.

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    I did not go swimming but did relax in a lounge chair while they had fun.

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    Finally our room was ready and we could not wait to see it. I told the boys not to touch anything until I got some good pics of the room before they messed it up. I will show those pics in the next post.

    That’s it for now…I will try to post more later on.

    Loralie
     
  7. mickeystoontown

    mickeystoontown DIS Veteran

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    What a beautiful family you have! Congrats on the weight loss too. I often say that trip reports and pictures are what keep me sane until my next WDW vacation. Thanks for your contribution to my sanity!;)
     
  8. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Great start to your TR. Congratulations on your 60lb weight loss - that is an awesome accomplishment. You look pretty skinny in that picture in front of the castle!

    My boys are 16 and 14. It's the 16 year old who has the "been there, done that" attitude. We found that bringing a friend works wonders for this and immediately adjusts the attitude. :rotfl:

    Looking forward to reading more!
     
  9. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    Thanks, I agree, I love reading trip reports with pics too. I don't have another trip to WDW planned so writing the report will help keep me sane for a little while.

    Bring a friend...I will have to remember that for the next trip. It will be a few years so we will see how the attitude is at the time. :lmao: Thanks for reading along.

    Loralie
     
  10. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    We finally got to the room and it was beautiful. We were in Sago Cay room 5409.

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  11. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    Here is a few pics of the balcony and the views.

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    Our view looking straight

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    Looking to the left

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    Looking to the right

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    After we saw the room we relaxed for a while. We had been up early traveling all day and we all needed a little rest. We set a wake up call so we can get ready for Chef Mickeys dinner.
     
  12. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Wow - Beautiful views from your room. What a gorgeous resort! GF is one resort that I have never even visited, so I have to try to tour it someday. I doubt I will ever have the opportunity to stay there, since I am trying to stay at all the DVC resorts first, but ya never know!
     
  13. Rozz

    Rozz DIS Veteran

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    Your trip report is fantastic! I can't wait for more! I love the photos. :goodvibes
    We have 13 and 11 year olds. They still look forward to going to Disney World. I think one reason is so they can try to beat me at Buzz Lightyear and TSM. :rotfl:
    I will be looking for the next installment later today (hint). popcorn::

    I want to congratulate you on your weight loss! I have struggled for the last couple of years to shed 50 lbs. I haven't given up yet!;)
     
  14. carrie6466

    carrie6466 DIS Veteran

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    Good job, love the pictures! I can't wait to see more soon (hint, hint) :)

    Congrats on the weight loss!
     
  15. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    You should go over and give the GF a tour. Maybe have dinner or afternoon tea. I wanted to do the afternoon tea so badly but with a family of boys I knew there was no way they would want to waste time having tea. :sad2:

    Thanks for the positive feedback. :thumbsup2 My boys LOVED Buzz Light year and TSM. They are 2 of their favorite rides and they are great that the whole family can enjoy them. Never give up on the diet. This is my motto "If I don't give up I will succeed...if I do give up I will NEVER make it to my goal." It took me a year to lose 48 pounds on weight watchers and then almost 10 months to lose the rest. It is not easy but as long as you don't give up you will make it to your goal. Keep up the great work. :cheer2:

    Thanks, I love that people are starting to read the report. I am mad at myself for not giving it a better title but it is what it is. :confused3 I am going to try to post more later on today but it is my MIL's birthday so I don't know how much I will be able to do. Thanks again for reading and for the congrats on the weight loss.

    Loralie
     
  16. dpndka

    dpndka Mouseketeer

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    I'm on board for your TR. Great beginning. Congrats on the wieght loss. That is a pretty big deal. I'm trying to lose 20 lbs and it is a major struggle.

    Your GF pics are simply beautiful. We're headed there in Dec :goodvibes
     
  17. teentoddlermom

    teentoddlermom DIS Veteran

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    The first time we went to the GF, we had a mirror image of that view, we were in Sugarloaf. Can I ask what type of room you booked? Was it a regular garden view?
    We are thinking of going back to the GF, a this summer. I never request specific rooms or views because I think it may be ignored, but I wonder what you requested, if anything. I had some weight loss a few years ago due to disney inspiration, and I congratulate you on your achievement!

    Looking forward to the rest of the report.:)
     
  18. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    Thanks and have a great time at the GRAND in Dec. I wish I was going back.

    Thanks and congrats on your weight loss. Seeing the Disney pics really gave me the motivation I needed to lose the weight.

    We booked a garden view with the Buy 4 get 3 deal. When I first booked I did not request anything. I learned on the GF board that you can request a marina view as part of a garden view room. When I called back to make a payment I requested the marina view. I don't know if they honored it. I mean when you look to the left you can see a little bit of the water where they dock the sea raycers so maybe that is considered a marina view :confused3 but when I did the online check-in, the only thing I saw noted on my reservation was that we were celebrating our anniversary.

    I hear Sugar Loaf and RPC in the main building is wonderful. I would love to be able to do that one day but don't know if I can justify spending the extra $$$. Thanks for reading along.

    Loralie
     
  19. loralie

    loralie DIS Veteran

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    Where did we leave off...oh yeah, we took a nap and set a wake up call so we would not miss our dinner at Chef Mickeys. We went over to the monorail station in the GF and took some pics while we waited. It is time for some before and after pics.

    This pic is from our 2004 trip of the 4 of us at the monorail station. Look at how little my boys are!
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    This one is May 2009
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    Another before and after.

    This one is my DH and I waiting for a bus at CBR in 2005
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    This one we are waiting for the monorail May 2009
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    The monorail came and we were on our way to Chef Mickeys. We LOVED being on the monorail. So quick and easy to get to the MK or the other resorts. Even the trip to Epcot later on was pretty easy. When we got to Chef Mickeys we had to pose for a pic with the Big Plate.

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    Chef Mickeys is our tradition. We have been to WDW 3 times and each time we have been to Chef Mickeys. The first 2 times was for breakfast, this was our first time trying dinner. Here are a few pics with the characters.

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    Donald was really funny because the boys and my DH were all wearing Mickey shirts and he kept pointing to the shirts and then pointing to himself as if was saying "hey, where is my shirt?" It was really cute.

    Since we were celebrating our anniversary and it was noted on all of our ADRs, they brought us out a cupcake. They also brought one out for our older son who was celebrating his graduation from Jr. High School.

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    We liked the food at Chef Mickeys but thought the breakfast was better. I think I will do a dining report too. I did take some pics of the food but forgot at some places. We were all full when we left Chef Mickeys but the night was not over yet. We were going to go over to the MK and watch wishes.

    That's it for now, next post will have MK and a little problem. :eek:

    Thanks for reading along,

    Loralie
     
  20. mickeystoontown

    mickeystoontown DIS Veteran

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    I do hope you'll start a dining report. We are eating dinner at Chef Mickey's for the first time this coming August. We aren't big breakfast eaters so we opted for dinner.
     
  21. wdwiala

    wdwiala DIS Veteran

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    That room at the Floridian is the prettiest room (other than the castle room!) that I have seen at Disney. Thanks for sharing the photos.

    PS. You look great. I am trying to get rid of some weight before our Disney trip. It's not easy.
     

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