Our 2nd Anniversary Disneymoon - Aug. 30 to Sept. 6! *We're home! 9/7*

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by DisneymoonJess07, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    So, I guess it is unofficially official. :lol: Why is that? Well, because today I bought the UNofficial Guide to Walt Disney World 2009, because my wonderful DH decided that he, too, would like a Disneymoon. Well, at least, he can't think of anything better and he knows how much this means to me. :lmao:

    I have read many trip reports and pre-trip reports, and I have really enjoyed them, especially the ones that are for people going around the same time period as we are. So, I thought I would share our journey, and more importantly, get advice from the many, many, many DISers that are more experienced at this than I am! It will also give me an outlet aside from DH, who is still learning to be enthusiastic about WDW. More on that in a moment...

    Anyway, this will be my fifth time at WDW, and second time staying on site. My very first trip was in 1991, when I was only six years old. We stayed at a Days Inn, and had one very memorable morning when I lost my second tooth while trying to chew our pancakes for breakfast. It was a memorable way to lose that tooth. It was especially memorable since my family didn't live in America at that point (my family is from South Africa). It was part of a longer trip to Florida to see my mom's sister who married an American, and who was very excited to have us stay for a long vacation.

    A few years later we moved to Canada, and we went to Disney as part of another visit to my aunt in Florida. We had a great time, but it was seriously difficult to go back to cold Canada after our time in Florida!! My mom vowed not to do that to us anymore, but we only ended up in Canada for three years.

    We went back to see my aunt and do Disney for Spring Break again in 1996, when we were now living in the US. Unfortunately, my parents had decided to take me out of school for a few days on either end of Spring Break, and my English teacher decided that this clearly meant that my parents cared nothing for my education and took it out on me. He and I never really liked each other (he was my teacher again in eighth grade for English AND social studies) but it didn't overshadow our trip. What I do remember, very plainly, was the PINK CASTLE!!! I remember not expecting it, and as much as it was kind of horrendous looking, I am glad I got to see that since it was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing, and especially since it wasn't my only trip to Disney.

    I went again in 1999 with my Show Choir group for a competition at Epcot. We stayed in All-Star Sports (not sure why it wasn't Music, but still) and that was a very interesting experience, especially since I knew a lot more about Disney than a lot of my friends. I loved seeing the new Animal Kingdom park, since I had lived in Africa until I was seven years old, but we were supposed to stay in groups of at least two or three, so I didn't get to stay as long as I would have liked. Plus, we did our performance, practicing, etc, which definitely took up some time. So that was a very interesting experience for me.

    Unfortunately, that was my last Disney trip, and it will be over 10 years since my last visit and I am SO EXCITED. :dance3: Looking at the website and my brand new guidebook, there are so many things that are new, AND we are looking at staying at either a Moderate or Deluxe resort (more on that later, I promise).

    Now, for the reason that my poor DH has been scarred about Disney? I really and truly love my in-laws. Really. But they have the AMAZING ability to make vacations work. DH hated going to Florida in general before we met because his parents had schlepped him and his brother around and around every time they went down to Florida. The only time DH went to Disney was when he was 15 (1998). They had been to visit the grandparents, and before the trip, the parents had promised that he would get back for New Year's Eve, since his friends were throwing a big bash. The plans were changed against his will at the last minute when they were already in Florida, and he was basically outvoted by his parents and brother. So to Epcot they went for the day.

    I found out later from my DMIL, that they had stayed at a motel waaaaaaaay far away from WDW, driven in, eaten in the car (they keep kosher, but even then you could bring food into the park, or found a solution so you didn't have to eat in the car), only had snacks and drinks in the park all day, and then ate again in the car after the park. And then drove again to the motel something ridiculous like 100 miles away. Sounds like a delightful trip for a 16 year old, doesn't it? At this rate, I am kind of amazed that he agreed to it, but a lot of it has to do with how excited I am, and I'm hoping to get him excited as well.

    We are almost at the 6 month mark!! To come...the cast of characters and details of our trip (so far)!

    :wave: to any visitors who would like to join us on our adventure!
     
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  3. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    [​IMG]
    Me (Jessica) - 23/24 at the time of the trip - Four trips to WDW. My favorite Disney princess is probably Mulan. She kicks butt. I am excited by the prospect of maybe seeing her at Akershus (spelling? the place in Norway), but I am not counting on that one. Not sure if I have a favorite princess. I am definitely a planner. I planned our wedding (with a lot of input from DH) and I am actually a moderator on a Wedding Planning message board (PM me if you're interested in chatting weddings!). I also love scrapbooking and the Sims 2 and am active in our synagogue.

    In my real life, I work in a non-profit as Assistant Office Manager, which has been interesting, especially on weeks like last week, in which my office mate (the other AOM) was on vacation for two days and then came back with stomach flu so was only in for one day before being out sick for two. I really enjoy the job though, and many of my coworkers make my job a true learning experience in a very good way.

    [​IMG]
    DH (Raif) - 26 - The picture above illustrates why I think he will love Disney done right. Anyway, I'd imagine that his favorite Disney thing would be Cars. Yup. Him and the 6 year old boys. :lol: But it's okay.

    He also works at a non-profit, as their Operations Manager, which means programming logistics and building management. Our jobs actually overlap in terms of similar responsibilities in different organizations, but not entirely. His is much more hands on in terms of building organization and space usage, unlike mine.

    We also have two little parakeets, Dahaba (Goldie in Aramaic) and Atara (Crown in Hebrew). Dahaba is yellow/green in color and Atara has a white spot on the crown of her head, so it made sense to us. Dahaba is 7 and Atara is 2 and they are our babies, although Dahaba was Raif's before we even knew each other. We got Atara together, since Parakeets are flock birds and the previous companion, Nekayva (Lady in Hebrew), had died at the ripe old age of 12.

    And that's us! Next up, the details of our trip...to be added tomorrow afternoon on my day off, I think!
     
  4. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    About 10 days ago, my parents were in a car accident while they were visiting us. Luckily, everyone was okay, but it meant that their plans for visiting were dramatically changed. The most severe injury was for my mom, who had two black eyes, so she didn't want to go out to dinner on Saturday night as originally planned. My husband and I went to the restaurant we were going to go to and brought the meal to the hotel. Since my parents had a suite, we ate at their dining table and it actually turned out to be a great evening. The quietness of the evening meant that there was a lot of time to talk, and my mom brought up the idea of our honeymoon again. Here my husband and I are, almost 18 months into our marriage and no honeymoon:scared1:

    Why not? Well, we were college sweethearts :hug: and when we got married :bride: we had just moved, I had just started a job and Raif was about to start a job. So, we had no money and no vacation time :guilty: Now, it's more of a matter of needing to actually decide on where wanted to go and when and make it happen. :scared:

    The biggest challenge is that we keep kosher and so there had to be food available where ever we went. Now, it's pretty easy to find a condo somewhere, buy enough kosher food at a local grocery store (maybe no meat, but pretty much everything else is easy) and make food for a week and stay somewhere very nice. Or there are some really incredibl(y expensive :scared1:) all in one resorts that are kosher and in exotic locations. Neither of these options sounded particularly wonderful.

    So, I was doing some searching and found...a hotel nearby Disney that had kosher food. Interesting. But it was more a Universal hotel, and reviews were spotty to find. Not a great solution, but the idea of Disney honeymoon was really worming its way into my mind. So I decided to look up the options. Not only are there at least one counter service restaurant at each park that have kosher food, several of the resorts have kosher food available as well!:woohoo: Then, almost any of the Table Service restaurants can have kosher food at them if you order in advance. Which of course, got me thinking about the DDP, since we would have to have a REALLY set dining schedule for dinners. Which is great for the DDP.

    I asked on the Disney website about the dining plan and we are 100% eligible for kosher food, but we have a no-show penalty so they have to take a credit card. Fine with us! DH was hard to convince, but he is slowly, slowly, slowly starting to become excited. :dance3:

    Anyway, other details. We are planning, of course, to stay onsite:cheer2: Originally, I thought of AKL, but my friend Erin (whose mom owns DVC so she's been there 198,476,872 times)pointed out that AKL is at the back end of forever in terms of location, and we would only be able to afford a parking view room. Our second option is POR, since it's a beautiful resort and a moderate, and not CBR (TOO BIG) and Erin tells us it's quiet. I want to be able to promise DH some down time and have some relaxing time together as well. If this were any other vacation we would have done Pop Century, but not for our honeymoon! There is nothing wrong with the values, but this is special!

    Anyway, aside from that? I'm still working on it!! Any suggestions on Resorts are appreciated!!! :surfweb:
     
  5. HeatherBelle614

    HeatherBelle614 Always wishing on a star!

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    Hello! Just subbied!!

    I'm glad your parents are OK after their accident!

    May I make another suggestion for a resort? Have you checked out POFQ? That's where we stayed on our Disneymoon. It's very small and quiet. They gave us a room at the back (still less than a 5 minute back up-front) that had multiple windows facing the river that runs to DTD. It was never crowded anywhere we went (during June) and the grounds are BEAUTIFUL!! The food court was always quiet, and we always came back to our room to find some little treats from Mousekeeping. (They knew we were on our honeymoon.)

    It was the perfect resort; I actually picked POFQ over all of the deluxes because we wanted something small and personal.
     
  6. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    Hi Heather!! Lovely to see you!! Any lurkers out there want to say hello?

    My mom still has two purple/green eyes but it's getting better she says. I felt so bad since they were visiting us, but it was not anyone's fault (someone pulled out in front of them) and no one was seriously hurt.

    I will definitely look into POFQ. It's right next to POR, which is good since POR has the kosher options at the food court. That only matters if we eat lunch at the resort, since breakfast will most likely be in the room or using snack credits (a lot of the prepackaged stuff or fresh fruit is kosher anyway). I love the idea of getting stuff from Mousekeeping...:)
     
  7. Mom2Max

    Mom2Max Mouseketeer

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    Hi!

    Congratulations on your trip!! I'd like to throw one more resort into the mix...CSR. It has newly renovated rooms, Queen beds, and looks very romantic in the pictures. Now that said, I have never stayed there! The resident expert on the boards is Buzz. If you search for CSR, you will find him and his link to his website. It is what convinced me to stay there in September! It's worth lookin' at anyway!! :goodvibes

    I'm sure no matter where you stay at Disney, you'll have a amazing time!!!:banana: :banana:
     
  8. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    The only problem with Coronado Springs is that there aren't the kosher options for lunch, but I will take a look...I'm always open to suggestions!
     
  9. Beka

    Beka Goes to 11

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    Can't wait for more! Great start!
     
  10. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    Welcome Beka!!



    I think it's interesting that no one is trying to convince me about AKL. Any takers?? ;)
     
  11. trinaweena

    trinaweena DIS Veteran

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    I got the link to your PTR (obvisouly) haha

    I wish I could give some advice about resorts but we always stay off property...the only Disney resort i've ever stayed at was All Star Music and I don't remember it very well.. In July i'll be staying at Wilderness lodge Villas which i'm super excited about!
     
  12. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    Hi Trina! Welcome! :)

    I hope you love the Wilderness Lodge Villa!

    So, I guess my next question has to do with dining.

    Which restaurants (Table Service) do you feel have the best atmosphere (excluding the food)??
     
  13. mommytothreeboys

    mommytothreeboys DIS Veteran

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    Hi Jess!!

    I was just about ready to turn in for the night when I saw you started a PTR! :woohoo: :woohoo: Count me in!

    First, glad to hear your family was not seriously injured. Yikes!

    Second, I have a few funny parakeet stories! My DS11 had several..yes...several, cause we don't have very good luck with them. I happen to be terrified of birds...not in the cage, but when they get out and flap around like crazy!:scared1: Anyway...if you ever want a good laugh let me know! (beautiful names for the birds, by the way!)

    Third, how cool that you are from South Africa! That must have been a real adventure....awesome life experience!

    Ok...the resorts. I have to say I'm partial to POR, but only because it's the only on-site resort I've ever stayed in! :rotfl: The grounds are beautiful, the food court is great.....we LOVE it there. My DH especially liked that it is quiet and a nice "escape" from the overstimulation of the parks! That said....it's your honeymoon, a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Go big or go home! If I could stay in a deluxe I would choose AKL. Just my 2 cents!

    Looking forward to being along for the ride. With my trip only 55 days away!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (sorry), it will be nice to have you and some other late summer PTR folks to come back to and share in your excitement!

    Ok...really off to bed now....not sure where you are, but I think you're an hour behind me...it's 11:25 here. G'Nite!!:)
     
  14. bettyann29

    bettyann29 <font color=blue>Heres my contribution for today..

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    Hi Jessica.. Im in... I followed you over from my PTR..

    First of all Im glad your family is ok.. sorry to hear about the black eyes.. but I guess the good way to think of it is that it could have been worse.. Just glad everyone is ok..

    I agree.. there is definitely nothing wrong with the values (we've stayed at them many of times) but you need something special.. :goodvibes

    We have only stayed at 2 of the moderates.. POFQ and CBR.. CBR was nice, but it just wasnt really anything special to me.. POFQ on the otherhand was great! I loved everything about it.. it has a small homey feel.. Definitely reminds me of New Orleans.. But I think wherever you go, you will have a great time!!

    Cant wait to hear more..
     
  15. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    We are in Central time, so yeah, I think an hour behind you.

    It's funny, South Africa doesn't seem like an adventure until you move here and everyone is so in awe. :cool2: I would totally be up for any funny parakeet stories you have. We have many! :laughing:

    I've been reading the Unofficial guide and they say that POR & POFQ are actually quieter than AKL...which makes us lean toward POR...but I haven't finished the accomodations section, so we'll see.

    I am excited to have your excitement nearby, and then sharing my excitement with you when you get back! We both get to go, so I won't begrudge you getting to go earlier than me ;)

    We are definitely leaning towards the POR/POFQ option, just because it sonds like it will be quiet (for Disney). It'll depend. Maybe if they do free dining we'll get AKL, since that would basically make up the difference in price. We'll see.

    Anyway, I hope you all like my new avatar. I saw another lady with a pixie one (I think the water one whose name I always forget) and I remembered a thing on Disney's pixie hollow website to create your own fairy. So I did that, printed it to PDF and edited the picture to create my avatar. I think she's pretty, and we both have a similar haircut. Time wasting at work, anyone? it didn't take me that long though.

    DH and I spent a long time talking about the things I had read in the Unofficial, which was interesting. A lot of the behind the scenes stuff was really neat to DH (i.e. the different kinds of rides and how efficient they are). He does behind the scenes stuff for his organization so that appeals to him. I'm glad he is interested...he even prompted me to continue talking when I thought we were sort of "done" with the topic even though I had read more. It's been good because when do tell him things, I can get his opinion. I.E. in explaining the different ticket levels, I can make sure that we're on the same page about which kind of tickets (Base with Park Hopper) that we'll get. So that's good. I'm really enjoying the guide, partially because of all the background information. Oh, and I think the information about how many ticket days we get because of the meal plan will help convince DH to leave for Orlando early so we can use the ticket for that Sunday :)
     
  16. HeatherBelle614

    HeatherBelle614 Always wishing on a star!

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    Just had to drop in to say..

    POFQ! POFQ!

    That is all.

    :cool1:
     
  17. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    You are so cute! :laughing:
     
  18. Angela0917

    Angela0917 DIS Veteran

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    Hi Jessica! DF and I are planning our Disney Honeymoon too!! We're leaving in 2 months! Can't wait to hear more of your plans!!
     
  19. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    Hi Angela, nice to see you! I am so excited for you for your wedding AND disneymoon!!!

    Hopping over to see your plans!!
     
  20. WDWRocksMySocks

    WDWRocksMySocks <font color=darkorchid>maybe I just have mullets o

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    I'm on board! We'll be leaving the day before you arrive. I'm excited for you -- first WDW trip in over ten years!! :banana: We've stayed at POR and loved it!!! It's such a nice, relaxing resort. I really like the location too. Either way, you guys will have a great time. :goodvibes

    I also noticed you guys are both work in the non-profit sector, so do I! I really enjoy it, but I'm getting ready to go back to school.

    Oh, and we were there to witness the Pepto cake castle! :lmao: It was a sight to behold. But, I agree w/ you...definitely worth the experience.

    -Kirsten
     
  21. DisneymoonJess07

    DisneymoonJess07 I

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    Kirsten! Thanks for stopping by!

    I think we are pretty decided on POR - mostly because I'm thinking it will give me room for a couple of extras I have been thinking about. I.E. a little package from memoriesbybetsy when we arrive...maybe with the minnie/mickey ornaments and the bride/groom ears in it, a spa treatment for two at the Seratoga Springs spa...that's a big if because the one they have listed on the website is $$$ and I have no idea what it includes yet (going to have to call and ask) and we are definitely going to try to do Keys to the Kingdom one of the days (I'm actually thinking maybe the last day in the morning, but not sure about that one).

    So, the $600 we'd save on AKL would go to other goodies for us...if that makes sense...
     

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