The Non-Nightmare Before Christmas.. Two Disney Sisters in WDW - December 2009 01/24

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by disneybarbie, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    The Non Nightmare Before Christmas – December 2009

    Two Disney Sisters' Perfect December Trip... Celebrating a 21st bday & 21 trips to WDW!!


    The Cast...

    Me - Emma (25)

    Sister – Verity (21) (aka Wazowski31)

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    (Verity left, Me right)

    Details

    December 9th - 14th 2009

    Disney's Boardwalk Villas.

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    Celebrating … Verity's 21st birthday (which was back in May, but never mind!), the holiday season.. and our combined 21st trip to WDW!! :yay:


    A little about us...

    Our first trip to Walt Disney World was in 1993 – I was 8 years old, and Verity was 5 – we grew up with Disney movies, toys and many wonderful family vacations to WDW.. especially since our parents bought into DVC in 2002.

    This trip was first dreamt up back in 2004, when we were spending New Year's Eve in the World with our family.. at the time, I was 20 and Verity 16.. we agreed it would be great to come back when we were both over 21 and could have a cocktail or two in world showcase... and so, 5 years later.. the dream came true!
    I live with my DF now away from home, so I was looking forward to spending a few days with my little sister, in our favourite place on earth! :goodvibes

    We booked the flights with Virgin Atlantic, and reserved the DVC resort (studio at BWV) back in March 2009 – I already had a trip booked with DF's family to WDW in July... so for the first time ever I would be visiting WDW twice in one year!

    Before the vacation, we had two 'planning parties' – where we discussed the important details like dining reservations, which parks to visit.. and eat Disney snacks! We also booked tickets for MVMCP and the MK Keys to the Kingdom tour.

    Snacks!
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    Verity's new minnie ears..
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    As this trip would just be the two of us super-disney-geeks... we also planned to attend several Disney fan meets that were being arranged.
    We both enjoy listening to weekly Disney podcasts like All About the Mouse, Inside the Magic & WDW Radio.. so it was exciting to think we'd be meeting the presenters! :thumbsup2

    Some small gifts we'd bought for when we met the podcasters..
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    The months flew by and soon enough.. December arrived and it was time for our trip! :santa:

    Hope you enjoy reading about our vacation... we had an amazing time! :wizard:

    Verity should be writing in too with her thoughts :cutie:

    Emma princess: x
     
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  3. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    Day 1 – Wednesday December 9th 2009

    We're on our way Mickey... 4000 miles to travel!


    I'd driven over to my parents' house after work on Tuesday to spend 'disney eve' with Verity!
    We were both awake early and left 7.30am, our Dad gave us (and our three suitcases!) a lift to London Gatwick aiport.

    Despite checking in online the day before, we still had to queue for nearly an hour at the terminal.. just to drop off our bags! :scared1:
    It was totally disorganised... luckily we were both bursting with excitement about WDW so didn't get annoyed!
    After getting through security, we bought some magazines, water, snacks & duty free perfume.. then had a quick breakfast at Costa coffee.. pretty soon it was 10.15am and time to board the plane!! :woohoo:

    once on board, we settled in to our seats and got even more excited.. one of the inflight movies was going to be … Up!
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    The flight was almost 9 hours and went surprisingly quickly – there were plenty of movies to watch on the plane, I also watched Hercules on my ipod and listened to some wdw music to pass the time.

    We landed at MCO at 3.30pm – a little early (yes!!) .. we were really quick off the plane and weaved around the 'slow moving' families to immigration.. which was a HUGE contrast to when i'd been there in July.. hardly any lines .. and to make it even better, they were playing the Illuminations firework music!!! :yay:

    We had a really great immigration officer – he noticed we were staying at Disney's Boardwalk at asked where it was and what there was to do!
    Few minutes wait for our luggage and then we were straight through customs to the monorail.. first 'ride' of the vacation! We noticed the trains had adverts on for MVMCP too!

    Walked to the Magical Express check in area.. no line.. I had printed out our email confirmation from DVC but didn't need it as the CM found us on the system.. this was Verity's first DME experience! I had used it twice before and always been really impressed with the service.

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    Our bus was going to Port Orleans Riverside and then the Boardwalk... the bus driver really liked that we'd made BWV tags for our suitcases, he was able to put them separately to the POR luggage!

    We waited on the bus for about 15 mins before we got on our way to WDW.. we texted our parents to say we'd arrived fine, and I phoned DF to tell him how the journey was going (it was nearly 10pm in England so I needed to ring before it got too late!)

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    The journey flew by (I love the video you get to watch while on board!).. after a quick stop at POR where most people got off ..
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    and we were at the Boardwalk!

    We gave the bus driver a tip in a disney customised envelope.. he was so surprised, he said he'd frame it!!
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    We checked in and headed to our room.. 4136 – it was the last room on the corridor, by the quiet pool.. once we walked in, we realised we had a refurb room .. AND we'd had an upgrade from a standard view to Water View!!

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    We spoke to our Dad, then got unpacked.. had quick showers to wake ourselves up.. and headed to Epcot!! :woohoo:
     
  4. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    We picked up our park tickets at International Gateway – we'd booked 6 day hopper tickets from wdw USA website – which worked out better value for money for us than the standard UK tickets which are for 7 days and always include 'water parks & more' option that we didn't need this trip.

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    First we headed over to Japan, it was a really warm and pleasant evening.. it was great to see the xmas garlands and decorations all around the park!

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    In Japan, we got dinner at Yakitori House counter service and sat outside in the gardens..

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    After eating we continued strolling around the World..
    looking in the shops in Italy and Germany – we also did Maelstrom in Norway and Gran Fiesta tour in Mexico as neither had a line!

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    As we left the Mexico pavilion, it was just before 9.30pm and people were gathering for Illuminations. We got a passionfruit margerita to share from the Mexico city stand (left from F&W festival).. and watched the fireworks.

    We both love the Illuminations show... and then we got to see the Holidays tag at the end.. WOW!! It was soo bright and stunning – the whole sky was alight.

    Afterwards, we decided to walk the 'long way' back to International Gateway.. going against the huge crowds heading to the Futureworld exit! But by the time we got to the American pavillion, it was almost empty and so calm. :goodvibes

    We stopped at BW Stage Door shop for some snacks for the room, then headed up to bed.

    The Disney Florist fairies had been while we'd been out, and delivered a xmas gift basket for Verity!

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    At about 11pm, we heard a huge 'boom' outside.. and realised it was the barge 'blow out' at Epcot!!

    Off to sleep .. ready for MK tomorrow!!

    Emma princess:

    xxxxx
     
  5. Kimmy

    Kimmy Mouseketeer

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    Great Start! Can't wait to hear more...I love the BW!
     
  6. PhillipA82

    PhillipA82 Earning My Ears

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    Nice nice :)
     
  7. NikkiLovesWDW!

    NikkiLovesWDW! "Are you seeing an increase in lateral forces?" "S

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    Yay!! I love a TR with lots of pictures! Sounds like you were off to a great start! I can't believe that you were not exhausted and were able to even go to Epcot that day. It must have been, what, midnight your time by the time you left your room??

    And tell me more about this passionfruit margarita in Mexico? I consider myself a Mexican Pavilion Margarita Stand expert and I have not seen that one!!! Is it new? And delicious?

    Oh AND you know how I LOVE to take the long way around WS after Illuminations! Isn't it the best?!
     
  8. Wazowski31

    Wazowski31 Earning My Ears

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    Ooh, it's getting good! Is so much fun to relive the holiday! I was so impressed with our refurbished room at BW, our studio didn't have an adjoining door to a 1 bed so we had a nice day bed and the room felt more spacious.
    I'm just remembering how amazing that dinner was in Japan, we both love japanese food but it's hard to find a good variety (and good quality) back in England so we had dreamt about that first meal for quite some time! and I absolutely love that iced green tea! yum!
    We managed to get front row on both boat rides! and as we exited the Gran Fiesta tour one of the cast members was pointing out the hidden mickey in the flag/poster above the queue line.
    Was so impressed with the 'holiday' illuminations, think the only fireworks that top it are Disney's new year's eve shows! We managed to have a great view of them, considering we hadn't realized what the time was! I loved walking the long way round world showcase on the way home, although I do remember getting a lot of fireworks debris in my eyes and therefore rubbing all my mascara off! a good look!
    My xmas gift basket was amazing! Full of Disney candy and goodness, I really love the disney florist service, it's such a lovely way to spread out the excitement and surprises of the holiday.
    I best go to sleep too! Can't wait to read more, thanks for doing this Emma!
    Verity xxx
     
  9. PopArtGal

    PopArtGal Mushu's Best Gal Pal

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    I'm in!

    I may sound stupid, but what do you mean by the barge blow out? Illuminations wasn't done when you left?
     
  10. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    Thanks for reading so far!
    The 'barge blow out' is when they have to get rid of all the propane gas left on the fire barge used in Illuminations.. it sounds like a huge rumble of thunder from the Boardwalk :goodvibes


    Our photopass cd arrived today! so more updates and photos to come :yay:

    Emma princess: x
     
  11. BippityBoo

    BippityBoo DIS Veteran

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    I am loving your TR already! I have to say that I really dislike to fly. I am not totally terrified, but a little scared none the less. I am SO impressed that you can survive a 9 hour one!! I think that "Up" would help me out, though :goodvibes

    Your room looks great and what an awesome view!! I am so impressed that you had enough energy to go to Epcot after a long travel day. I can not wait to see the decorations at MK!!! Thanks again for the link to your TR!
     
  12. Nancy for Disney

    Nancy for Disney DIS Veteran

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    I think reliving the vacation is the best part of trip reports. I was in Disney the same time as you. I love to compare trips and to see if my path crossed with a stranger I met on the internet. So far it hasn't. We were in HS on Wed. but had dinner on the Boardwalk.
     
  13. ladybugmom

    ladybugmom DIS Veteran

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    Hi Emma!! I found the link to your TR on Katie's PTR! I'm so excited about your TR b/c we're planning a trip this December!! I cannot WAIT to go to WDW at Christmastime!! Great updates so far!! :goodvibes
     
  14. praisehisname

    praisehisname DIS Veteran

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    I'm in! DH and I were there the 10th - 14th, so I can't wait to hear about those days from your perspective!
     
  15. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    Day 2 – Thursday December 10th 2009
    Magic Kingdom! .. a Dole Whip meet.. then dinner at Kouzzina

    We both slept well until about 4am, when the jet lag kicked in and we both woke up.. managed to doze a bit until the 6am wake up call.. we were greeted by some festive music and then “nooo sleeping!!” from Stitch and Mickey. :woohoo:

    We got ready and headed down to the bus stop just after 7am, although our room was far from the lobby – we had a nearby staircase down to the front of the Boardwalk.

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    We waited a few minutes and then, a magical moment.. the MK bus arrived!

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    Two stops at the Swan & Dolphin hotels, then we were on our way to MK!:yay:

    There were very few people around when we arrived, so we took some photos.. another guest was kind enough to take a picture of the two of us.

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    Just before 8am, the opening ceremony started – Verity hadn't seen this before.. I love it!

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    First, a photopass picture on Main Street (I had pre-purchased the photopass cd for $99..it's normally $150!)

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    (yup.. that's Pal Mickey in his Pirate costume!)

    We headed to Tomorrowland to ride the recently reopened Space Mountain – unfortunately, it was closed! So our first ride of the day was... the TTA!!

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    When we went through SM, the lights were all on –
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    that didn't give us confidence that it would be reopening any time soon – so next we got Fast Passes for it... then rode Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin.. followed by a first for both of us.. Tomorrowland Speedway! I joked it was the first time I had driven a car in the USA ;)

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  16. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    The park still felt quiet, it was a little cloudy but warm... next we headed to Fantasyland and rode the Tea Cups,

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    Verity managed to film this on her new camcorder (I think she's going to try upload videos to the TR if possible!)!

    Then we did Snow White's Scary Adventures
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    Then a quick look in the shops.. Sir Mickey's and Tinkerbell's Treasures

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    [​IMG] (make it pink.. no make it blue! Sleeping Beauty's dress)

    and It's a Small World – we sang the song all the way round. :cutie:

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    Afterwards, we walked through Cinderella's Castle, Verity hadn't done this for several years..

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    (we noted how polite other guests were when we took photos, they'd stop walking until we'd taken the picture.. that doesn't normally happen at home!)
    By now it was about 9.30am so we decided to stop for breakfast.. where else, but the Main Street Bakery! I considered getting a cinnamon roll, but it was huge! Instead, I had a cherry danish with a latte, Verity had a cheese & ham croissant with a latte.

    We sat on the tables outside the Plaza restaurant to eat, gazing at the castle – some other guests walking by asked us where our food was from because it looked delicious!

    Verity noticed our receipt from the Bakery was very long... then realised the bottom half was a coupon for 20% off at the Emporium until 12pm!!
    we made a quick decision to go for a shopping spree next! :banana:

    It turned out to be great timing as we missed most of a sudden rain shower... we did a load of shopping (lots of Christmas presents for family back home) – and our $14 breakfast saved us over $40 in the store. We had the shopping sent back to the Boardwalk.

    We waited a little while on Main Street for the rain to ease off a bit – it was nice to be able to look at the decorations and Window 'credits' to the Disney imagineers.

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    Next we went to Adventureland, Pirates of the Caribbean had less than 5 minutes wait (a favourite!)

    (In the shop..)
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    Then we did the Tiki Tiki Tiki Room – hadn't done this for a few trips, it's quite cute. I would like to see the original version at Disneyland as we never did this in WDW before it became 'under new management'.

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    The rain had stopped by now, so we walked over to Liberty Square
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    and did the Hall of Presidents – neither of us had seen it with the new Obama animatronic, Verity admitted that she was looking forward to a nap during it (!) but we were both surprised by how good it is now!

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    After that, we went into the Christmas Shoppe to buy a few more things –

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    then it was time for our FPs for the new Space Mountain!
    We enjoyed the enhancements – it did feel much darker which made the turns and drops more unexpected.

    It was getting near lunchtime so we walked over to Frontierland and went to Pecos Bill's :) … Chicken wrap for Verity, Taco Salad for me and a large lemonade to share.. and the bill came to exactly $20 :teacher:!

     
  17. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    After lunch, we went to Splash Mountain – which was a walk on! We both LOVE this attraction.. although Verity couldn't ride it the first time we went to WDW in 1993 … as she wasn't tall enough! :cutie:

    Thunder Mountain had a much longer wait (45mins I think) so we decided to leave it until another day, we had three more visits to MK planned for the trip!

    We wandered back to Adventureland and did the Jungle Cruise, we had an older skipper which seemed unusual – but he was really funny, told some great jokes.

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    Next up was Aloha Isle to get Dole Whips... Verity's first one! They are so delicious – it was 3pm and we'd planned to attend a WDW Today podcast/AllEars.net meet – we could see a large group of people nearby... it was a little bit intimidating at first, everyone seemed to know each other already!
    Verity was brave and joined in a conversation with a lady called Lori (BriarRosie on the DIS I believe!)– and we also met Beci Mahnken who is the owner of Mousefan Travel & is often a guest on Lou Mongello's podcast.. we found it funny to meet someone who's voice we know so well!

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    We stayed for about an hour, it's nice to speak to people to love Disney as much as we do! Beci gave us red lanyards that everyone else in the group was wearing.

    We left MK at 4.20pm, and got the Yacht & Beach Club bus back – we walked through the YC (where I stayed in July with DF's family.. I wanted to smell the lobby again – I think it's the wax they use on the floors, it's amazing!) and we looked at the Christmas decorations.

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    Walked back around to the Boardwalk – there was a red carpet and film crews outside Atlantic Dance as the Home Depot College Football Awards were taking place there later.

    Back at the room, I tried out the internet connection (free for DVC members) as I'd brought my laptop with me – spoke to DF briefly, oh.. and the Disney Florist had visited again! This time the surprise was for me, from Verity.. luckily we'd picked different gift baskets – I got a Peterpan themed gift..

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    Then we got showered and ready to go for dinner at Kouzzina on the Boardwalk. :goodvibes

    We were given a buzzer at the restaurant – so we walked through to Seashore Sweets shop – but after 5 minutes are table was ready.
    We were seated at the very far end of the restaurant, it was in a nice quiet area although it would have been nice to be able to see the open kitchen (will have to go again!)

    To drink, I tried an Ouzo-tini (the server checked I had had Ouzo before before ordering!) and Verity had a Pomegranate Splash cocktail... both were very nice.

    The food was delicious & our server was attentive without interrupting our meal too much.
    To eat, I had Vongole and then Cinnamon chicken stew, Verity had Calamari followed by Fisherman's Stew (I think?!) - and we shared a side dish of Gigantes Beans.
    The restaurant was very busy, I was surprised as it hadn't been open very long, but shows how popular it is already!
    There was a LOT of food and when I go to Kouzzina again I will make sure I'm really really hungry before!

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    We had planned to go to Fantasia Gardens mini golf after dinner, but as it was quite cool and the jet lag was creeping up on us, we decided to have an early night as we had a full day planned tomorrow!

    We stopped at Guest Relations in the lobby on the way back to the room to ask about booking a taxi to Animal Kingdom the next morning (we had an ADR before park opening so the buses wouldn't be running) – and the CM told us that there was no need to book, just visit bell services in the morning and there'd be a line of cabs waiting.

    We also popped into the shop in the Boardwalk, I bought a BW 2009 Christmas pin – the CM was super friendly and told us that all BW pins were half price today! (I have only just got into pin trading this year but can already see how addictive collecting can get.:rotfl:)

    Walking along our corridor, we noticed a guest had decorated their door with a christmas decoration ..

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    Verity thought it wasn't straight, so tried to adjust it.. and knocked it off!! we were giggling so much (jet lag does crazy things to you!) but she managed to put it back on the door and we ran back to our room... I stopped to take some photos of the new hallway carpets (With hidden mickeys!)

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    Back at the room, there was a problem with our toilet.. it just kept filling up with water and eventually flooded the bathroom! :eek: I phoned maintenance and a lady came within half an hour and fixed it.. she cleaned up the whole bathroom & gave us a huge pile of extra towels (great at DVC because you don't get daily housekeeping!) - I tried to give her a tip but she wouldn't take it, we were so grateful though!

    We heard Illuminations from Epcot (yup we really were having an early night!) the extra Holiday tag at the end sounded like a war had started outside :scared1:.

    Coming up tomorrow... Tusker House, AK, The Wave, MVMCP.. then Jelly Rolls til 2am!

    Emma princess: x x
     
  18. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    Thank you for reading so far! ... 9 hours is a long time to fly but I try to fill the time up with watching movies (usually 2 hours each), the meal & drink services take up another hour.. read a book or some puzzles from a quiz book.. listen to ipod.. it soon flies by! The thing I don't like is turbulence :eek: .. it scares me so much, unlike Verity who used to work for an airline so she is great at flying now! :goodvibes

    Thank you all for subscribing :thumbsup2

    I'm snowed in today so plenty of time to write up the TR!

    Emma princess: x
     
  19. disneybarbie

    disneybarbie Disney Princess

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    Just uploaded some more photos of our BWV Studio & the view..

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    and.. THE Spreadsheet plan!

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    Emma princess: xx







     
  20. ladybugmom

    ladybugmom DIS Veteran

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    WOW!! You are an updating machine!! YAY for the 20% off coupon!! Disney is the BEST place to go shopping!! Your resort is beautiful--thanks for all of the pics!
     
  21. jewels1916

    jewels1916 DIS Veteran

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    Hey! Great start on your TR, I am looking forward to reading more! Our trips overlapped, I was there Dec. 5-12th! :) I'm going to start my TR....someday....when I can find my camera charger again.... :confused3
     

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