The Drive, the Dream and DVC - A March 2011 Birthday Surprise TR(NEW 11/9 p. 32 END)

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by Mndisneygirl, Apr 4, 2011.

  1. Mndisneygirl

    Mndisneygirl DIS Veteran

    Oct 15, 2008
    Hi everyone!!! :wave:

    I hope many of you came over from my PTR, but just in case, let me introduce myself.
    I'm Sheree, the mom of two beautiful daughters, Sarah and Paige.
    This is us last summer. At that time, we had NO IDEA we'd be buying DVC or returning to WDW so soon. Believe, me, if I had known, I would have bought Annual Passes!
    My husband Dave and I planned this trip as an alternative to our originally planned trip to London and Paris. Yup, this started out as the inexpensive trip since Europe was too costly! It really was a low-cost trip when we started. We had just purchased a small DVC contract and thought we'd go to Florida, visit DH's sister and spend a few days at WDW. If you want all the details, you'll just have to go read the PTR! :laughing:
    Suffice it to say, it turned into an amazing trip!
    Sarah had wanted to be surprised with our spring break trip since we decided we couldn't go to Europe. So we kept it a secret.
    By the time Christmas rolled around, we were all set for a long drive to Florida, a three night cruise on the brand-spanking new Disney Dream, and a five night DVC stay!
    We decided to add one night at Pop the night before the cruise, and drive straight through leaving Minnesota on Tuesday, March 8.
    After the cruise, we had one night at Saratoga Springs and 4 nights at Animal Kingdom Lodge. All three are new to us!

    We decided to participate in the Fish Extender exchange with our cruise mates, so we had more things to keep secret from the girls. We also had to figure out a way to tell the girls about the trip.
    They knew we were going somewhere warm, and it was a long drive. They are smart enough to know that probably meant Florida, and at our house, almost every trip to Florida includes a stop at WDW! But we'd been playing it up how expensive it was, and we were trying to spend less since we couldn't go to Europe. I really think they believed we were just going to my SIL's house in southern FL and the beach. They were hoping for WDW, but NEVER suspected the cruise.
    Why do I know this? Because when we watched all the coverage of the Dream's christening, all the advertising etc., we kept saying how we'd love to go on it "SOMEDAY". It was way too expensive, we could never get a room so close to spring break etc. We said, maybe in a couple years...

    Spring Break for us this year fell on March 14 - 19. Sarah's birthday is March 9, and that was the last day of school before two days of conferences and then break. Paige's birthday is March 24, so the trip really fell right between. We decided to celebrate their birthdays and told them not to expect much in the way of presents. The surprise trip would be their presents.

    So we told their teachers we would be needing to reschedule conferences. They were very understanding, and agreed to keep the secret. Luckily, the girls are both good students, and it was no big deal for them to miss one day. It happened to be March 9. So I had to bring treats to school on March 8. Just while I was finishing up all the last minute packing. OY. Sarah's friends were all guessing where we were going!

    We had been watching the weather intently. A big storm was expected to hit us just about the time we were to leave, (after school on Tuesday) and we decided that we would pull the kids out early and leave a few hours ahead of schedule to miss the storm.
    We packed lots of snacks and some sandwiches in the hopes of avoiding stopping too much and eating too much fast food. The kids each had a pillow, blanket, backpack filled with all their travel "essentials".

    So with that - we hit the road on March 8th at 1:44 p.m. with me behind the wheel so Dave could get some rest. He was planning to do most of the overnight driving.:drive:

    Next up: On the Road Again! How long does it take? Who gets to sleep? Did we miss the storm? What were the gas prices? How often did we stop?

    The answers to those questions, and the next chapter!!!
  2. micandminforever

    micandminforever DIS Veteran

    Dec 27, 2006
    Joining in to read about your fun trip.:goodvibes
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  4. crzyred

    crzyred DIS Veteran

    Nov 28, 2005
    I'm here!!!:flower3:
  5. Colleen27

    Colleen27 DIS Veteran

    Mar 31, 2007
    I'm here and looking forward to the ride! Hope you have lots of pics of the Dream and maybe some tips for surviving the drive. :)
  6. Northern Disney Girl

    Northern Disney Girl DIS Veteran

    Feb 26, 2008
    I'm here!!! Now to go back and read!!!!! YAY!!!! You started!!! soexcitedsoexcitedsoexcited!!!!! :cool1:
  7. wigdoutdismom

    wigdoutdismom Disney Driven in every way.

    Jun 25, 2008
    Made it to page ONE!!!!
  8. Northern Disney Girl

    Northern Disney Girl DIS Veteran

    Feb 26, 2008
    OK - you know that I am positively dying to know the answers to these questions, right??? ;) Please tell me you will answer all of them before August 20th??? PLEASE!?!?!?!? :rotfl2:
  9. SoonerGirl

    SoonerGirl DIS Veteran

    Nov 9, 2006
    Here Sheree! Can't wait to hear all about this trip :woohoo:
  10. Disney Mommy 3

    Disney Mommy 3 DIS Veteran

    Oct 18, 2006
    I am here!!
  11. MNTwinsMom

    MNTwinsMom Mouseketeer

    Sep 15, 2009
    I'm in too and can't wait for your updates! I'm anxious to hear about Spring Break crowds, Saratoga and AKL and of course the Dream!

    I've driven from MN to WDW twice, but not with kids . . . I'll take any tips you can pass along!
  12. Pluto_fan

    Pluto_fan DIS Veteran

    Mar 30, 2008
    I'm here, Sheree! :banana: Can't wait to hear all about it! :cheer2:
  13. natebenma

    natebenma Beach Club Dee

    Jul 19, 2008
    Can't wait to hear about your surprise Dream trip!
  14. Charleston Princess

    Charleston Princess DIS Veteran

    Jan 28, 2008
    Hi, Sheree! Thanks for the PM! I am here! :banana:
  15. ChattaAlley

    ChattaAlley DIS Veteran

    Mar 2, 2011
    To me this sounds 100% better then a trip to Europe (although I would still like to go). I so want to do a cruise then WDW or vise versa.
  16. MeMom

    MeMom DIS Veteran

    Jan 22, 2007
    That's a lot of moving around, but just WOW for the whole trip!
    I'm excited to see and hear about it all. :)
  17. Dancegrl624

    Dancegrl624 DIS Veteran

    Sep 13, 2008
    I'm here!
  18. Native NYer

    Native NYer DIS Veteran

    Dec 25, 2007
    Joining in!
    Can't wait to read all about your Disney adventures.
  19. Mndisneygirl

    Mndisneygirl DIS Veteran

    Oct 15, 2008
    :welcome: :wave: Hi!!
    :welcome: I have plenty of pictures and lots of tips on driving!!
    Hi Kimmy!!!
    :yay:Yay! Hi Anita!
    Yes, my DH is quite wonderful! He's the reason I became a Disney lover in the first place, he needs lots of credit!
    I will tell you all these things before August! I better finish this thing by August!!!

    : :welcome: I'm excited to tell the story!

    Hi Shawna!!!

    :welcome: Oh, there's lots of info!!! First driving tip - bring movies! Second tip - If you can, drive at night when they're sleeping!
    Hi!!! :welcome:

    Hi Dee!! It was so fun!!

    Hi Jackie!!!

    :welcome: My problem is I want to do it ALL!!
    You're not kidding!! It was a difficult packing situation. You'll see.
    Hi Meghan!!! :welcome:
    :welcome: There were some adventures!
  20. jenjolt

    jenjolt Loves All Things Disney!

    Sep 16, 2008
    I'm definitely in Sheree!! Can't wait to hear all about the drive!!!
  21. NancyLuvsMickey

    NancyLuvsMickey DIS Veteran

    Oct 3, 2009
    I'm here!!! popcorn::

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