Hi ya guys and gals! First off, let me start by saying that I have never written a trip report so bear with me. I didn't even know that trip reports existed until about seven or eight months ago. I know....what's up with that? I guess I spent all my time over on the resort and theme park boards and didn't venture out enough. I am also going to tell you right now that you'll find that I am a detail person. I guess it's because I have to go into such detail when drafting legal documents. So, I am apologizing up front. If you don't want to know all the details, just skip around. You know....like when you read just the juicy parts of a romance novel and skip all the boring parts. Don't worry, you won't hurt my feelings. I absolutely love taking pictures. The more the better so you'll see lots of pictures in this report. Some of my pictures from this trip were lost somewhere between my camera and my computer. It took a guy at the camera shop two hours to restore 967 pictures. I know I took more but that's all he could retrieve. Since I had cried for two days before I took the camera to the shop, I was happy with what he was able to do. Our family consists of: Myself: Lisa, 43, legal secretary for 26 years. Yep, I was just a babe out of high school when I started working in a law office. After spending 25 years in the same firm, I finally decided to make a change. So, I went to work with another attorney in May of last year. That meant we had to cancel our June, 2008 WDW vacation. I'll give more details in a little bit. Oh, and I have Bell's Palsy. It's no biggie, you may just notice that the right side of my face is a bit puffy and my eye droops a little. Oh well, if that's all life has thrown at me so far (other than ovarian pre-cancer), I can handle it. My husband: John, 43, owner of a cabinet shop. After working and making money for others for many many years, he decided to make a drastic move...quit his job and started his own custom furniture and cabinet shop. It really was a good move since he suffered a head injury on the job 16 years ago which caused him to have epilepsy. The seizures are under control with medication but there are some days that are worse than others. Those are the days when being your own boss is great. Our daughter: Lacey, 22, missionary college student in Cleveland, Georgia. She goes to school year round (well, they are off for three weeks for the Summer). The program she is in is very intense. Not only does she take online college courses but she teaches children's church, volunteers at a homeless shelter in Atlanta, Georgia, volunteers her help with a mentally and physically handicapped baseball team, works at a Summer camp for Autistic children and a Summer camp for children from financially strapped families who otherwise might not get to attend camp. She is one busy girl and Mama is super proud of her. It is a bit hard though because we only get to see her for a week at Christmas, a week in May and three weeks in the Summer. Our son: Hunter, 12. Hunter has grown up going to Disney World. His first five consecutive steps were in the Magic Kingdom. He is very into riding his bicycle, art, playing football, playing his guitar, his Playstation and hanging out with his Youth group friends. He's the one that yelled "You're the best parents in the whole wide world!". More about that in just a minute. Our puppy: Oddball, 1. We adopted Oddball (Disney name: from 101 Dalmations) from a local animal shelter last year. He was our consolation prize after we had to cancel our June, 2008 WDW vacation: Since he and his two brothers were "drop-offs" at the shelter, we didn't know his true age but they estimated about 6 weeks. We decided he has the same birthday as our son. Here's a picture of my husband, Hunter and I taken on our 2008 trip: And a picture of Lacey and Hunter: And Lacey with her Mission Georgia Master's Commission Group when they visited our house last year: And a picture of Oddball and one of Oddball and Hunter playing in the rain: Now that the introductions are over, I'll tell you a bit more about the story behind the title. Like I said, because I changed jobs, I had to cancel our 2008 vacation. I've known my new boss for many many years and he told me when he hired me that it was a real possibility that I could still take a vacation but later in the Summer. I didn't start work for him until the last week of May so I truly didn't think it would ever happen because school would be starting on August 17th. And, we were a one secretary/one attorney office. Who the heck was going to fill in for me even if I did book a vacation. But, I kept watching the Special Offers page on the Disney World website just in case. When the End of Summer room only promo came out, I marched right into my boss' office and announced I would be going to Disney the second week of August. I told him what a good deal I could get and he said book it. I started calling all my legal secretary friends and attorneys to see if they knew anybody who could fill in for me. Just when it was beginning to look like I was going to have to call a temp service (which my boss didn't want to do), I found somebody! The granddaughter of one of my attorney friend's secretary. Hooray! I immediately called my husband and he was super stoked. Since he's his own boss, he can take off any time he wants. Some time when we were talking, it was decided that we wouldn't tell Hunter about the trip. We would keep it a secret from him. I get off the phone and call Disney travel and book a preferred location room at the Caribbean Beach Resort at a super fantastic price! Because it was a room only promo, we weren't able to book the dining package. We were okay with that because we had already spent a good chunk of our allotted June Disney vacation money when we went to Branson, Missouri scared1:and some people say Disney is expensive) and Arkansas. Now you see, Hunter was majorly disappointed when we had to cancel our Disney vacation. We had gone that time of the year every year since 1998. Our June, 2008 trip was to be our 13th trip. (In the year 2000, we went three times.) We had taken him on a road trip through Missouri and Arkansas the week before I started my new job just so we could say we went on vacation in 2008. It just wasn't the same though. This surprise trip was going to be a big deal to Hunter. It was now early July and we were wondering how in the world would we keep our Disney trip planning a secret? We would be traveling to Georgia to see our daughter graduate her first year of missionary college mid-July and I decided I would make a big deal of being too lazy to put the luggage back in the attic. That way, I could keep it in the bedroom and I could start putting things in it a little at a time without Hunter wondering why luggage was stacked up in the corner. I could also say that all the snacks I was picking up were for our Georgia trip (sticking some of those back too). Anyway, time passes. We go to Georgia and the suitcases never get put in the attic. I order the park tickets and tell them we'll do Will Call for our tickets at our resort. During our 9 hour drive to Georgia, my mother (who knew about the surprise and who came with us to see Lacey graduate), John and I talked about John, Hunter and I going on another long weekend road trip in August. Hunter said that would be cool. Planting the seed so when we started packing up things in the car come August, it wouldn't seem crazy to Hunter. The plan was in place but would we be able to be able to pull it off?