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Old 05-24-2013, 03:10 PM   #1
MarieLightning
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"How soon is too soon for planning?" "Right about now" May 2014 PTR **03/24**

So, I've been going back and forth about starting this PTR - my wife is telling me I should wait until I've completed my current TR (from November 2012 ) before doing a PTR for May 2014, but I just can't help it - I'M TOO EXCITED!

That's right

WE'RE GOING BACK!



To be fair, I could also make a PTR about a teensy tiny trip we have planned in September, but there's really hardly anything to plan for that one - only park timed planned is MNSSHP. This is basically the only reason we're going - because we want to do the Halloween Party, but we don't have the budget for a long trip with the other one we're planning and moving out and all that good stuff. The rest of our short 3 day stay we'll spend at DTD and resort hopping!

But this is not what this PTR is about. No siree - that's peanuts. In May, we're going big! (Sort of?)

And that's because there will be not two of us, nor four of us like last time, but...



You counted right - ten of us! (Off topic, I'm so excited I finally found an excuse to use those bouncy guys!)

I've already got my countdown ready to go! Even though we don't actually know for sure which dates we'll be going because I can't book my vacation time for 2014 until December at work

We're crossing toes and fingers for the second week of May though, which should work for our college friends and our European friends for whom it's hard to get summer time off!

So basically, yes, we're at a pretty tentative step of planning. In the sense that nothing is or will be booked for another few months. Not in the sense that I don't already have it all planned out in my head

So keep up with me if you'd like! It's gonna be a long ride, hopefully without too many bumps!

Up next, what brought this crazy idea on

Last edited by MarieLightning; 03-24-2014 at 08:52 PM.
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Old 05-24-2013, 05:39 PM   #2
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How this all came to be
(AKA Marie talks too much so feel free to skip this part)


So, how did we actually get to the point of deciding on such a trip? (FYI, when I say we, I refer to myself and my wife Amber )

It took many steps, believe you me

Of course, as soon as we came back from Disney in November, we *knew* we wanted to go back. Sadly, we also knew we couldn't be some of those lucky people who get to get every year - at least, not yet, nor for another while. But we figured there's nothing wrong with every other year!

We soon enough established 2014, somewhere in the late Winter or early Spring season. We did *not* want to go during the Summer - I can't stand the heat over here, so I don't even want to imagine how much I'd melt away and whine in Florida during July (not that May will be that much better on the heat level from what I've been hearing but oh well, you gotta do what you gotta do!) And then, if all goes well, Amber will be starting college during the Fall of 2014, so that nixed off any idea that goes further than August.

At my job, I can't actually get time off at all during January or early February. It's a black out zone - apparently people like booking their trips a lot during those months so all hands are needed on deck But then, the closer you get to March, the worst the crowd level gets, and as we were spoiled with November, we didn't want to go during too high a season - aka, anywhere near Spring break.

That left us with a pretty small window - between late April and early May. At least we can't complain about being overwhelmed with options

So the original plan soon evolved into wanting to go in April, as that seems to have become our favorite vacation month in the past couple of years, so why not one more year of it! At that time we also talked about it some with my aunt and uncle, as my aunt definitely wants to go back as well!

The plans evolved and changed as time went on. Now, the next part is gonna seem random, but I promise, it has a point. See, a few months back, we were also planning our 'wedding', or well, if you prefer, our vows renewal. We got married very simply, the two of us with my parents as witnesses, partly to get started on the immigration process (which is loooong and being apart because neither country lets you stay in it for more than 6 months is no fun when you're married). However, we knew we wanted a bigger ceremony, where we could have our friends and families and so on.

We set up a budget for it, which I established how to save for it within the course of one and a half year - doable, though a bit of a strain on saving for anything else. We had many arguments over it, because we don't have the same views when it comes to money, having grown up in two very different type of environment, which gave us very different views on how to handle spendings.

At some point, we tried to combine the two things - I mean, if we would be going back to Disney anyway, why not have a Disney wedding?! Unfortunately, even by reducing our guest list by more than half to accommodate one of the smaller packages, it would still have been way over budget (because in either case, we would be paying for a lot of people's travelling and stays since some of them are poor college kids and some of them... well, let's not get into that XD)

With the Disney wedding idea down the drain, we went back to our regular wedding plans. And that's when it hit us - the most amount of money we would be able to spend on our wedding wouldn't be enough to give us the wedding we wanted. So why spend so much money on one day that wouldn't live up to our expectations?

Why, instead, not use that money on a whole week of us and our closest, dearest friends at the happiest place in the world?

Now, this may seem a bit insane. And some of our friends *have* pointed that out. "Why not use that money just on yourself?" "Why not use that money to get your life started?" Which, to be fair, the latter is a very valid claim. We could do that. We could split that money and use it for three or four trips, just the two of us. We could put it aside, use it for more reasonable and grown up things.

Maybe we just don't want to admit that we are grown ups and will have to face those kind of responsibilities much too soon XD But this is just really important to us. In a way, these people we are bringing along were the people we were having the wedding for. And even though there won't be a big ceremony or anything like that, we'll still treat this trip as a big Disney celebration - so it just makes sense and feels right that they would be along for the ride!

So this is the (ridiculously long, I apologize XD) story of how the idea of this trip came to be!

If you're still with me, you deserve a treat!

And now, I think it's time to move on to the list of those amazing people in our lives who are so awesome that we decided to bring them to Disney World!

Coming up next, the cast members!

Last edited by MarieLightning; 05-24-2013 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 05-24-2013, 05:44 PM   #3
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Subscribing. Can't wait to hear more!
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:41 PM   #4
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Silly wifey. You should finish the regular TR first but oh well :P
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by MeeskaMomma View Post
Subscribing. Can't wait to hear more!
Thanks, I hope you'll enjoy it

From what I can see of your countdowns, looks like we're headed down very close to the same time, too!


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Silly wifey. You should finish the regular TR first but oh well :P
I can do both at the same time! I'm good at multitasking :P

And your countdown is still wrong. Makes it look like we're not even going together :P
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Old 05-24-2013, 08:09 PM   #6
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I thinks so! We haven't settled on a date entirely yet, but really liked the first week of may this year, I hoping it will be great next year too!
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Old 05-24-2013, 08:25 PM   #7
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I thinks so! We haven't settled on a date entirely yet, but really liked the first week of may this year, I hoping it will be great next year too!
We probably would have actually picked the first week of May versus the second! But one of our friends who's coming along goes to College in Tennessee, and she doesn't get out until that week, so that would have been too early. I'm sure you'll have a great time if you go then, it seems to be good for crowd level and not too bad weather-wise!
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Old 05-24-2013, 08:40 PM   #8
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That is what we were thinking. I can't wait until the prices come out so e can really plan. I will be stalking your thread for tips
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:37 PM   #9
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That is what we were thinking. I can't wait until the prices come out so e can really plan. I will be stalking your thread for tips
I know what you mean! I've been trying to plan based on the pricing from this year but it's just much easier with the actual rates XD

And I hope I'll be able to give some good tips!
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:38 PM   #10
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Introduction time!

I mean, it's all great and stuff to be reading up on logistics and plans and so on, but let's not forget what makes it awesome - the people involved!



(We're a bouncy group if you haven't noticed yet)



This is me! My name is Marie (okay if you want the truth it's Marie-Christiane, because my parents decided hyphenated names were the way to go. I won't even get started on my brother's name) and I live in Quebec, Canada. I'm French Canadian, but I've gotten good enough at English that my wife mostly feels sad over the fact that I (generally) no longer have an accent I'm 24 years old, though I will have turned 25 by the time we go back! I work for a travel wholesaler, which works great for me because travelling is my passion - I'm a cruise specialist, but if they opened up a Disney dedicated department I'd be all over that!




Next up is my beautiful wife, Amber She's from Michigan, and for the time being she still lives there as we're still in the process of the whole immigration stuffles, which as I've mentioned before, takes a while. She visits me a lot too, so it's not horrible. She's 20 right now, though she will also age before our Disney visit Right now she works seasonally at an amusement park while waiting for her Canadian residency. Once that comes through, she'll study to be an elementary school teacher! She's my best friend, my Disney partner in crime and the best thing that's happened to me




This is Cassandra, though we call her Eli (sounds random but it isn't). She lives in New Jersey and she's one of our best friends! She's pretty much crazy, which makes her awesome, and though we don't get to see her nearly as much as we would hope, any amount of time we get to spend with her is always great! We're totally cool with taking her to Disney because we know someday she'll be rich so she'll take us places Okay okay, that's not why we're taking her, but she's super talented at pretty much anything artistic and when she's a celebrity we'll be able to tell people we knew her before she was famous!




Next up is Merranda! She's from Michigan, and she is Amber's childhood friend, so she's known her for much longer than I have. They actually went to elementary school together, and kept in touch after Amber moved away. I've only gotten to hang out with Merranda a couple of times, but it's always really great to spend time with her! She seems quiet at first but she's definitely got an edge of slight craziness as well, and she's up for anything fun, so I know she'll be a blast to be in Disney with! Besides, I feel we share a special bond as we once went to an amusement park together and did the RipCord, so near death experiences will bring you closer to people (I *may* be exaggerating)




Then we've got Traci and Andy! Traci is Amber's best friend, ever since 7th grade. I actually didn't get to meet her until December of 2011, before which we only knew each other through the internet. Back then, we didn't really hit it off that well, but as soon as we actually got to be in the same room and talked and such, we got along really well! That just goes to say that you can form incredible friendships online, and other people you really just have to be face to face with them to get to know them for who they are. She's a great girl and a great friend, and we'll have a blast with her at Disney!

Andy, I don't know very well as I've only been around him a few times for very short amounts of time. He's a cool kid though and his and Traci's relationship is really sweet! Amber is actually trying to convince him to propose to Traci at Disney World Who knows if it'll work! I guess we'll only know the answer to that when we get to that point




This is Veronica, and her boyfriend Jeremy! Veronica is another of Amber's best friends, and they've known each other for a few years but mostly got closer during their senior year of high school. I don't really know what to say about her, because I've spent very little time with Veronica - less than two days total, really. She can be pretty quiet, and not the type of person to start conversations with strangers easily - and since that's basically the same as me, we don't talk much She's really nice though, from what I do know of her, and she means a lot to Amber. She's also one of those people who can do pretty much anything and everything XD

Now Jeremy, I don't know at all. He's actually the one person of the group whom we are not paying for, as originally he was not included in the trip. Aside from us, he's the only one who has been to Disney, so when Veronica told him that we were taking her to Disney, he asked us if he could join because he really wanted to be there with her the first time she saw it all (which come on, is pretty cute XD). Since he was willing to pay for his part, we had no issue with it! Actually, his joining the group makes it a bit better by putting us at an even number, and it also lowers the cost of what we have to pay for because of the new room arrangements! But more on that later.




Finally, these two gentlemen are Rodolfo (on the left) and Rui (right). We call Rodolfo Rai though, because he doesn't like his name, and he would definitely not be happy with me for introducing him as such Rai actually lives in Europe! He was born in Portugal but he recently moved to Spain for work. We've never actually met him face to face, but he truly is one of our best friends. He can be blatantly honest and infuriating, but you just have to take him how he is. He was one of the first ones we told about our relationship. He's admittedly the one who's the least Disney oriented of the group, but I have no doubt he'll still love it as he loves theme parks, and is really excited about all the rides! He and Rui will probably also extend their trip a little and drop by Universal before our Disney trip as he is a Harry Potter fanatic, and he figured he might as well make the most of it while coming to this side of the ocean!

Rui is Rai's fiance, and we actually don't really know him at all. That might sound weird to say, since we are still paying for his Disney trip, but considering how expensive their flight will be (flights are the one thing we are not covering XD), we didn't want to put even more of a monetary strain on them and make it a poisoned gift XD I'm actually pretty intrigued about meeting him. He really, reeeaaaally loves Disney, and he's super excited about getting to go. Apparently he loves parades a lot, so he'll want to see those for sure. The tricky thing here is - he doesn't speak English So that's bound to make for an interesting meeting!




But now, where will all these lovely people stay?? That's for another time!
(Probably tomorrow)

Last edited by MarieLightning; 05-24-2013 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:17 PM   #11
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Joining in.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:51 PM   #12
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That looks like fun bunch!
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Old 05-25-2013, 08:47 AM   #13
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Joining in.
Yaaay! Hope you'll enjoy!


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That looks like fun bunch!
They really are! It's gonna be interesting cause some of them don't know each other XD But we will make it a point to tell everyone that there is no obligation to always stick together, so hopefully that'll help!
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Old 05-25-2013, 10:12 AM   #14
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Enough about the who - let's tackle the where!
(Or, why we're making boys sleep in a girl's room)


Now, where oh where could we be planning on making aaall these people sleep?

Keep in mind, we're by no means rich or anything XD I make a pretty basic salary at my job, and Amber currently only works summer time, so savings go up little by precious little. Now, if I had the money to put everyone in a 3 Bedroom Grand Villa at the Boardwalk, boy would I!

But, I haven't even taken the time to consider it or look at the pricing because I would probably just go

No, we had to keep to the values. And that's fine by me! I mean, my dream is to someday stay at every single Disney hotel, from the All Stars to the Grand Floridian, even if just for one night! (Save the campgrounds at Fort Wilderness because I would never be able to drag Amber there XD)

Now, here's a little insight onto my job. I get discounts on places. I mean, that's the point of having a crappy salary - not having to pay a lot when you go on vacation To be fair, Disney *is* what it is even with a discount! But it helps. Basically, any product that my company sells, I can pay cost on. That means what my company pays to the supplier is what I pay to my company - they don't make any money off of me on that product, whether it's a hotel, flight or a cruise.

For hotels, I'm allowed TWO rooms with that type of discount, but I have to be traveling of course (I can't just give that discount to other people, I have to be there). And then however many people those TWO rooms can accommodate is however many I can get the discount for.

Now, there's ten of us. And where oh where can we possibly fit ten people in only TWO rooms at a value resort?

Hmmm....

....

....

I'VE GOT IT!

The Art of Animation!

I've been wanting to stay at that resort ever since I saw the first pictures of it. Can you say awesome looking?!

And here's the deal. Because of the fact that I can only get maximum discount on two rooms, it's less expensive for us to book one standard room and one family suite at AoA than to do, for example, two quads and one double at Pop Century or any of the All Stars. I swear - I calculated it (to be honest, even if it had come up a bit cheaper the other way around I probably wouldn't have cared )

And since Amber loooooves Cars, that's where we'll be staying!

Now, here's where the whole 'Jeremy joining us brings the cost down' deal.

Originally, it was only the nine of us. Not everybody in that group can be mixed up though, and not everybody knows each other. Traci knows Merranda from going to camp with her and Amber, and she knows Veronica from school. Eli, Rai and Rui stand a bit on their own - they are familiar with the rest of the group, but not close.

So we established that we would put Traci, Andy, Veronica and Merranda in a Little Mermaid room (Veronica and Merranda are okay with sharing a bed XD) and then Amber and I, Rai, Rui and Eli would take the Cars Family Suite!

When Jeremy asked if he could join us, we of course had to change some of those plans. That part was simple enough - we took Merranda out of the Little Mermaid room, and now Jeremy will stay with Veronica, Traci and Andy.

Merranda and Eli are sort of acquainted, and Merranda has a very easy temperament so we're not worried about that. They're both fine with sharing, and we figure they can take the sofa bed and Rai and Rui can do the table bed (I don't care what people say, it looks smaller than a regular size bed to me!)

Now, adding a sixth person to a Family Suite that already had five people in it is a very minimal addition, so that cost definitely doesn't break our budget. But now, on top of it, we only have to pay for three quarters of the Little Mermaid room because Jeremy is paying for his own part! Double yay!

Of course, we don't know yet *how much* it's all gonna cost. I've tried to calculate some based on this year's pricing, but it doesn't always work perfectly. I have a specific number in mind that will hopefully not stray too far from reality!


And now, what to feed this lovely group of people?
I'll give you a hint - it's food
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Old 05-25-2013, 10:23 AM   #15
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Hello Fellow French Canadian!

I'm joining in. Sounds like a great group of people to travel with. My wife and I are also planning a trip in May 2014 (and Oct 2013 it's an addiction) so we'll be planning along with your guys.

Can't wait to hear more about your trip!
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