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Old 10-02-2014, 11:37 AM   #1
poppinspal
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A newbie's trip that almost wasn't! A PTR

I won't leave you hanging and I'm sure you can guess but the trip is on, but for awhile it almost wasn't. This is a trip with lots of firsts in it so I've decided instead of just reading everyone's wonderful stories, I was going to share mine as well.

Before I get into the dramatic start to the story let me tell you a little about myself...

My name is Megan, I live just north of Boston. Been to Disney World approximately 30 times in my short 32 years. (Don't laugh my 30s has been some of my favorite years so far!)

This picture is my brother, sister, mother and myself after ridding Kali River Rapids at WDW three times in a row without getting out of our raft. The CMs thought we were pretty funny.


So this past spring Run Disney announced a new half marathon, an Avengers themed half marathon and it happened to fall on my birthday. Oh I was beyond excited... till I realized that it was on the wrong coast for me! Disneyland? I've never been to Disneyland, I'm a Disney World girl. Boston to Orlando... that flight is nothing to me. I knew this race was the race for me... I love, love, love the Avengers (Thor! Captain America!) and I always look for one big race to do around my birthday. I was going to come up with a plan.

Enter the guy I was seeing at the time. I was telling him about the race and how much I loved it. He said so do it. I explained my concerns of going alone and what to do. He said register and I'll go with you. Really? I mean we hadn't been seeing each other long and we were talking a race more then half a year away! Yes he said just register and we'd figure out travel details later. In shock I figured what the heck I'd go for it.

Oh this is me last year celebrating my 32nd birthday. I've been told I'm not normal. (I love my obstacle course races!) But yes I'm not kidding about doing a run for my birthday!


Well here's where things get messy... fast forward a month or so and I find out some pretty ugly information about this guy. No criminal record or anything but he'd lied about a lot of his life and there was no question we were over. But now what about my trip? First he'd made all these grand elaborate plans to stay at the Grand California and some other stuff while we were out there. Well quickly that all changed because I couldn't afford to go all out like that on my own but I wasn't really sure what to do with my plans.

So for the end of spring and part of summer my reservation just sat there with his name on it too, with money put down on a trip. I didn't even want to consider the trip for awhile. When people would ask me about plans I'd tell them I didn't want to talk about it. Eventually my cousin convinced me not to give up on going and that she would actually go with me. After I considered the idea for a little I decided deep down I really did want to go. So it was time for my cousin and I to make our plans. The trip was back on! Or was it?
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Megan Missing the mickey bars and Everest.
A Disneyland Newbie's trip that almost wasn't. November 2014 PTR
My last trip to the world December 2012 for my sister's Disney wedding!


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Old 10-02-2014, 11:38 AM   #2
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Links

Leaving space here for chapter links. Yay!
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Megan Missing the mickey bars and Everest.
A Disneyland Newbie's trip that almost wasn't. November 2014 PTR
My last trip to the world December 2012 for my sister's Disney wedding!


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Old 10-02-2014, 03:30 PM   #3
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Following! Sounds exciting
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Old 10-02-2014, 04:38 PM   #4
WDWJonasGirl
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Following!! Can't wait to see the run
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:38 AM   #5
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So we're going.... I think

Thanks for joining my report. (Was a little worried no one would join along in my story!)

So my cousin and I decided we would go, so you would think I would rush right off to change the reservations for us. But for another week or two the reservation sat without my cousin's name on it and with someone else as my travel companion. We also quickly realized that Grand Californian wouldn't work for my cousin's budget and I couldn't afford to pay for both of us.

So I took out a notepad and read the disboards to research different hotels, to try to find out what my options were. I wrote down a list and put it in order of interest. I called to make the reservations and... Disneyland's hotels were booked for cheapest rooms, all the hotels on my list were booked. Was this trip not going to happen? I was getting a little worried.

This is where getting the right person on the phone can make all the difference. The woman I spoke to checked to see what was available. She looked at deals they had and offered her opinions on what ones were the better ones. She talked to me while I looked at what the hotels looked like and their ratings.

So we ended up with... Best Western Stovall's Inn. I've read the good, the bad and the ugly. (The ugly mostly just being a crazy free breakfast.) I'm happy with our choice given the limited options we had. I'm very happy as long as the room is clean and safe. I've read the rooms seem dark... this won't bother me. I've read about the distance to the parks and as I said to my cousin, I'm there to run 13.1 miles, if I can't occasionally walk back to our room then I'm in trouble. Also... I'm going on vacation, what more do I need?

So now our trip is 100% on and the planning phase is on. Disney World planning is really second nature to me so there's been a lot more fact checking for my first ever Disneyland/Avengers Half/Birthday trip!
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Megan Missing the mickey bars and Everest.
A Disneyland Newbie's trip that almost wasn't. November 2014 PTR
My last trip to the world December 2012 for my sister's Disney wedding!


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Old 10-17-2014, 07:54 AM   #6
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Well I'm back. I've decided to share all the possible details I could about this trip now that I've shared how the trip almost didn't happen.

The cast of characters:

Me, Megan, 32 years old and will turn 33 on the trip! I've lost count of how many times I've been to Disney World, I general tell people its in the range of 30 trips. I've run I believe five Run Disney races and I love them. This will be my first trip to Disneyland.

My traveling companion is my cousin Cheryl, she is 38. She's also been to Disney World many, many times. Our families used to go together as kids. She used to run till she found out she has some crazy problem with her hips so she's limited to a couple miles at most. But when I told her what was happening with my trip she was more then happy to come along as my race support!

The original dates of our trip were November 13-November 17. At the time we were booking airfare Run Disney was saying the expo would start on November 13. We decided we didn't want to fly in the day of the expo so we booked our airfare for November 12. I will work my normal day and then leave right from work to hop a flight to Disneyland!!!

Well almost. We checked how much it was going to be to add a night on to our reservation at Best Western....it was more then the rate we had for the rest of the trip and we decided to look at some options. So we ended up with a hotel room at a hotel near the airport. We will get in around 11:00 at night Cali time, so like....2:00 to us? So we just needed a place to crash. Turns out the expo doesn't start till November 14 so we have our first day to check into our hotel early and hit the parks for the first time!!!

Normally when we travel to Disney World we are on a dinning plan and certain restaurants are family tradition for both of us. When researching Disneyland and thinking about this trip we decided sit down meals was less of a priority. EXCEPT.... we have an early morning reservation for Minnie and Friends breakfast on the Friday we are there. I got the first time they have available. I've read the good, the bad and I guess ugly about every character meal. We've always done at least one character meal every trip and decided to carry that tradition on. I happen to have a great love for Chip and Dale... like hints of them can be found all over my room. I also love Minnie. So this seemed like the best pick. I'm not picking based on food here people, I'm picking based on characters! Other then that we are sticking to counter service. I know we will go to Earl of Sandwich on Sunday for my birthday. I love their tuna and we also go there when in Disney World. I've also been making a list of food I want to check out when we're there.... drinking out of a cone from cozy cone! Ice cream sundae in the kitchen sink from Clarabelle's! Turkey legs! Mickey bars! (Wait those last two are just things I already love) The only other meal I'll probably plan what I eat in advance will be the night before the race. I want to have some sort of idea where to go.

Our plans for what days we go to different parks is still very much up in the air. I have a couple of priorities on this trip that are far different form my normal trip. I have a niece who is 2 (will be turning 3 a few days before my trip. She was the best 30th birthday gift!) Like all little girls right now she is Frozen obsessed!!!! So we are going to attempt to get a meet and greet fastpass because just imagine if auntie comes home and shows her that she met Anna and Elsa. She'd go crazy. The other is I want to meet Captain America and Thor, because I'm obsessed. I love the marvel superheros, made my day when Disney acquired them! (Really... Disney, Muppets, Marvel, Star Wars... all in one company. It's almost too much.) I'd originally thought to do this the day we got there BUT how can I not go meet them after earning my Avengers Half Marathon medal???



Isn't it pretty? Oh and I could see them on my birthday? Yup plans changed. We'll probably hit the hot tub for a little after the race, I'll shower up, throw on my Thor tee shirt, hang that medal on my neck and off we'll go to see Thor. Happy Birthday me!

Of course there will be food thrown in some place in that mix, I'll probably be hungry/want a beer. I blame all the mud runs I do that give you a free beer at the end. I don't drink a lot of beer.... except at the end of races. I need it, I want it.

Fine, fine... me for real drinking post race.


Yeah an hour later I was already back to drinking mixed drinks! I've been conditioned to drink beer post race! I'm the Pavlov's dog of beer!


Okay that's a long enough update without many pictures. (Sorry to those few people who may stumble here and read this. More pictures in the future.) Next time I post I'll share all about my pre-trip crafting (a costume, hairbows, room decorations...) and my genius idea to not only not over pack for the first time ever but to only pack a carry on!
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Megan Missing the mickey bars and Everest.
A Disneyland Newbie's trip that almost wasn't. November 2014 PTR
My last trip to the world December 2012 for my sister's Disney wedding!


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Old 10-17-2014, 01:53 PM   #7
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fun story - thanks for sharing!
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