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Old 10-06-2009, 01:09 PM   #1
Sarahboo
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Our first family vacation - POFQ - 1/26/10-2/2/10

I've spent so much time obsessing over our trip, I decided I may as well put it in one central place. Right now I have all sorts of loose papers stuck in various places with ideal ADRs and things I want to do. We'll be staying at POFQ, and it's our first time on site. We've added the Regular Dining Plan and I've never had a TS meal at WDW so I'm particularly obsessed with where we'll eat.

Previously, we've always done big family trips with my parents, my ILs, my brother and SIL, etc. and rented a house off site. This time it will be (almost) just us. It happens to turn out that my parents were planning to go to Orlando the same week to visit my aunt, so they're going to spend 1-2 days with us at MK, and my ILs live just a couple of hours away so they may stop by for a day, but really this trip is all about our kids and what we want to do, no one else's agenda matters. Finally. This will be our first trip ever, outside of our honeymoon almost 10 years ago where we didn't travel with someone else.

The travelers:

Me - Sarah - I'm 31 and work in college admissions. I've been to WDW 3 times before, most recently when our daughter had just turned 3 (she'll turn 6 the week after we return this time). This year I'm planning to be a Girl Scout leader, but my other hobbies are writing, reading, German style board games, hosting events, I'm on the Board of Directors for my college alumni association and I love to cook. I graduated from culinary school in 2003 and I work at a culinary school now.

DH - Ty - He's 34 and a college student. I'm so proud of him, he's getting straight As while also being a SAHD to our little man, and managing the school routine with our daughter. He takes evening classes, so we don't get to spend much time together during the week, and I know it's as hard on him as it is me to being going on all cylinders from sun up to sun down.

DD - Brynn - She's 5 and attending a Montessori school for her 4th and final year, Kindergarten, before transitioning into traditional 1st grade. She loves all things Disney, her favorite Princess is Ariel, and she also loves comic books and Superheroes. She's going to be Hawkgirl for Halloween and asks me every day when we can go to WDW. This trip will be a Christmas surprise for her and if I keep the secret until Christmas morning, I think everyone will be shocked. We're planning a special trip to the BBB for her this trip, she went last time and it was the highlight of the trip for everyone.

DS - Ezra - He's almost 17 months old and is a big fan of sitting on the cat, throwing toys, They Might Be Giants and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. His favorite, near as we can tell, is Mickey Mouse and Daisy Duck. It will be his first trip ever, and we're hoping for a character dinner at Chef Mickey's or Tusker House just for him.
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Old 10-06-2009, 01:43 PM   #2
Sarahboo
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We sort of have a plan assuming we get all of the ADRs that we want. We're in the huge group of people that will be logging on in the middle of the night on the 27th to try and make reservations, so who knows how that will go. If we got everything we want, our trip would look like this:

Monday January 25th: I'll get off work around 5 and go straight to the airport. We fly Portland to LA and then LA to Orlando, arriving at 6am Tuesday morning.

Tuesday January 26th: Hop on ME, check in at POFQ and then head to AK with Dinner at Boma.

Wednesday January 27th: MK: BBB first thing in the morning in the castle, LTT for either lunch or dinner.

Thursday January 28th: Breakfast at Chef Mickey's, then DHS.

Friday January 29th: Epcot, Dinner at Le Cellier.

Saturday January 30th: MK with dinner at O'Hana.

Sunday January 31st: AK with dinner at WCC.

Monday February 1st: MK with breakfast at Kona.

Tuesday February 2nd: Epcot, with breakfast at Akerhaus. Then our plane leaves at 4pm, so we'll have to head back to the hotel around noonish to catch the ME.
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Old 10-09-2009, 01:55 PM   #3
Sarahboo
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I'm not sure how i manage to spend so much time obsessing over this vacation. For us, it's a big deal and a big expense. We don't go on many vacations, and I truly enjoy planning the vacation as much as the vacation itself.

I'm getting a little nervous about making the ADRs. I'll be calling first thing on the 27th like everyone else, and since we're on the west coast, that means getting up at 3 am if I am really committed. By the time I'd call later in the day I'm afraid Le Cellier, Chef Mickey's and O'Hana would be hard to get. I could give or take breakfast at CM because we can always just do it one morning at Tusker House, but I really want to go to O'Hana and Le Cellier (though if LC isn't available, I'd try to get Teppan Edo). I guess I just need to hash out some backups that wouldn't require us to totally reschedule all of our days and the rest of our plan.
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Old 10-09-2009, 08:30 PM   #4
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I'll join you for your PTR. I love planning our WDW vacations. I clearly remember our first family vacation. It was so great. I can't wait to hear more.
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Old 10-09-2009, 09:40 PM   #5
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How exciting!!!! It took us about 10 years also to take our first "real" family vacation and 2 years after that to get to WDW. Our first trip was 2 years ago this month (now we live 10 min from the mouse, but that's a different story).
Staying on property is the best! I feel you get to experience all of the magic, that's just me though. And you are in for a real treat to eat TS. I used to say I go to Disney for the food!!! You have got some really great places picked out. Bomas is one of our favorites. Matter of fact I think we have been there 3 times in the past month.
I planned and researched for months before our first trip, I think it paid off because it was the best vacation I have ever had in my entire life. And the vacation that started us thinking about a move. I am sure you will have a great time. I look forward to reading your PTR.
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Old 10-09-2009, 11:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brave teacher View Post
I'll join you for your PTR. I love planning our WDW vacations. I clearly remember our first family vacation. It was so great. I can't wait to hear more.
Thanks for stopping in! I'm so excited to see my kids there, and it's just going to be a real treat for our family to go. I'm hoping that even if I plan obsessively I'll be able to just go with the flow once I get there and rely on everything I've learned to get me through instead of micro-managing my family. I don't want to spend my vacation stressed out or worried about the details, I just want to enjoy it!

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Originally Posted by 8disneyfans View Post
How exciting!!!! It took us about 10 years also to take our first "real" family vacation and 2 years after that to get to WDW. Our first trip was 2 years ago this month (now we live 10 min from the mouse, but that's a different story).
Staying on property is the best! I feel you get to experience all of the magic, that's just me though. And you are in for a real treat to eat TS. I used to say I go to Disney for the food!!! You have got some really great places picked out. Bomas is one of our favorites. Matter of fact I think we have been there 3 times in the past month.
I planned and researched for months before our first trip, I think it paid off because it was the best vacation I have ever had in my entire life. And the vacation that started us thinking about a move. I am sure you will have a great time. I look forward to reading your PTR.

Where'd you move from? I wish we lived closer, it's a huge expense and ordeal to come from the west coast to WDW, airfare is more expensive, and if you don't get the flights just right, you really lose two whole days to travel. What fun is that? Being close enough to visit regularly sounds wonderful!
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Old 10-10-2009, 08:46 AM   #7
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Moved from KS 3 months ago. We figured it would be cheaper to live here then keep taking vacations with 6 kiddos!
It has been a blast so far!!! I love being able to just pop over and watch wishes, I don't think that will ever get old.
I hear you about plane costs and time. We flew from KS once and drove the other 2 times.
I see you are flying from Portland, is that where you are from. I lived across the bridge in WA for awhile growing up.
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Old 10-13-2009, 02:18 PM   #8
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I thought I'd put some pictures of the family in here so you can see who all will be in on the fun:

I'm really the family picture taker, which means that there just aren't that many pictures of me! It's one of the reasons I love Photopass at Disney, everyone is in the pictures!

Here's one of the whole family, but to find one with all of us, I had to go back to Ezra's newborn pictues from May 2008. :lol:



Here's Brynn with Wonderwoman last Halloween:



Ty, Brynn and Ezra during our snowstorm last December:

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Old 10-13-2009, 02:23 PM   #9
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Wow! Look at my ticker! Just 104 days, and ADR day is creeping up on me fast!

Here's another one of Ty and I:



And here's one from last weekend at the Pumpkin Patch:

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Old 10-13-2009, 04:22 PM   #10
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You guys look like a great family. You're going to have so much fun.

almost under the 100 day mark
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Old 10-13-2009, 04:45 PM   #11
Sarahboo
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Thanks! Some days it seems like our trip is so far away and osmetimes I think, it's creeping up on us! I know the holidays will go by quickly, so once Halloween and Thansgiving near we get so busy the time will just fly!

It will be more fun to obsess over the trip after Christmas when Ty and I don't have to talk about it in secret anymore. I'm excited to talk with Brynn about what she's looking forward to and to look at the maps with her, but it's all top secret until Santa visits.
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Old 10-13-2009, 06:42 PM   #12
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That will be one cool gift from Santa!!!
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:45 PM   #13
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Yall are such a cute family! The planning gets a lot of fun when you start to add the kids in the planning. Their excitement brings up the excitement for you as well.
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Old 10-18-2009, 08:28 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by 8disneyfans View Post
That will be one cool gift from Santa!!!
Thanks! Now I just have to hope that we are actually able to keep the secret! Luckily they're young enough that they aren't catching onto the subtle conversations. I definitely could not pull this off if they were younger because I like to talk about it too much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brave teacher View Post
Yall are such a cute family! The planning gets a lot of fun when you start to add the kids in the planning. Their excitement brings up the excitement for you as well.
Brynn is going to freak out. I can't wait to look at maps and talk with her about the different rides and attractions. She had just turned 3 the last time we went so while she was excited, we didn't really include her in planning. This time we're celebrating her 6th birthday a week after we return, so she's much more capable of wrapping her head around it.
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Old 10-18-2009, 08:54 PM   #15
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In planning news, not a whole lot is happening. Next Monday night/Tuesday morning is D day for ADRs. I'll be trying to get them along with everyone else on October 27th. I'm trying to decide exactly how committed I am. We're just outside of Portland, Oregon which means 6am is really 3am, and while I don't ever sleep that well anyway, I'm not excited about setting the alarm for 2:45 just so I can get dining reservations. That being said, I've considered my options time and time again, and I've never once eaten at a TS restaurant at WDW and I have very specific ideas about where I'd like to eat. It's worth a little lost sleep if I get everything I want. I'm thinking I might go ahead and get up in the middle of the night to do it. Am I crazy? It would be different if we went more often, but we probably won't go again until Ezra is tall enough to ride everything. By then, Brynn probably won't care about princesses and who knows if Ezra will be too picky to eat at Boma. So I'm just going for it. My husband thinks I'm nuts, but who cares, right? He'll appreciate my careful planning once we're there.

In other news my parents still haven't selected a hotel. I told them they should try to get the 4/3 deal and wouldn't you know they still have some room at POR! I'm a big fan of the idea of them staying there. It's close to us, but not so close that they can just knock on our door whenever they want. Plus, they're renting a car because they're spending a few days visiting family and they only plan on spending 2.5 days with us at the parks. On EPCOT day, they're taking the kids around 3 and Ty and I get to spend the evening alone together, hopefully with dinner at LeCellier and maybe a walk over to Boardwalk. I'd also like to get a new wedding ring, since I've never liked mine and I stopped wearing it because I've gained weight since having the kids and I've never had it resized. What a great way to celebrate our 10th year of marriage right? Anyway, I don't want to have to bring the car seats if I don't have to, but if they stay offsite, they'll need them for just this one night. What a total pain in the *** to bring 2 car seats for just this one night. Ultimately I want them to be able to stay wherever they feel like staying so I haven't told them my opinion, but here's to secretly hoping they choose POR!

Finally, I need your advice on this last piece of business. I think we're going to switch Thursday and Friday so we'd spend Thursday at EPCOT and Friday at DHS. We don't really think the kids will be up for Fantasmic late at night and since we definitely don't feel like getting in line 2 hours before the show, we think we'll just pass on it this time. It would be different if it was like Wishes and you could see it from almost anywhere in the park. Since we don't think we'll see Fantasmic, I decided to plan DHS on a non-Fantasmic, non-EMH day in hopes for lower crowds. Any opinions? Should we keep it the way it is incase we DO decide to hit up fantasmic? I should make up my mind before ADR D-Day.
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