Jeffrey made me do it, but it’s almost free for our three!! **Updated 5/19**
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Jeffrey made me do it, but it’s almost free for our three!! **Updated 5/19**
Okay, so we returned from California nearly 3 weeks ago and I’ve yet to start my TR. Now that I’ve managed to organize my computer files, I’m ready to give this a go! [Read…Dyan neglected to archive the photos on her laptop for 1 ½ years, which wasn’t exactly a smart move It only took me more than a week of evenings burning more than 2 dozen CDs and DVDs on a computer running extremely slow due to my stupidity! I won’t be doing that again anytime soon (waiting to archive, not the archiving itself…. …don’t want to go there again! : ) Long story short – back up your files regularly! ]
Now playing: “Jeffrey made me do it, but it’s almost free for our three!!” A trip report by DyanKJ130 featuring her family's Southern California Adventure: February 15, 2008 – February 23, 2008.
Adventurers: Jeffrey (43) – my charming husband, 911 Dispatcher/EMT/Fireman, NASCAR fan & converted die-hard Red Sox fan (Like he really had a choice….he’s married to me! )…and after the last time we saw Bronson, he’s sold on being his fan too!! I knew he’d come around eventually! Jeffrey is happy doing whatever, as long as it’s already planned Gotta him, even if he is PAINFULLY shy! This is his 1st trip to California. Actually, the farthest west he’d ever gone before this was Pennsylvania.
Jeffrey wearing Bronson’s ring!
Dyan (40) – that’s me! 7th&8th grade Special Educator (I run the Behavior Adjustment Resource Program in a junior high school….trust me, it’s A LOT of fun! Never dull, anyway), trip manager, player & tour guide. I’ve been a Red Sox fan since birth and a fan of Disney ever since I can remember. I’m also an admirer of one of the sweetest, most sincere baseball players on the planet…Cincinnati Reds pitcher, Bronson Arroyo! Let’s just say that DH every time I walk away from a conversation with him! Anyway, back to the trip…I could talk about Bronson all day, but I’ll save that for another time… This is my 3rd trip to California (& DL), with the last being in 1988, when I traveled alone to attend California’s Rainbow Girls’ Grand Assembly.
I’m the one on the left!
Kyle (15) – our son, high school sophomore , Red Sox fan, saxophonist, black belt in Oki-Ryu Kenpo Karate, Wii junkie, Rubik’s Cube aficionado, seasoned WDW adventurer and 1st time visitor to California! While he may be the sarcastic teenager, at times, we are still very close as we battled some turbulent storms when he was very young. (His unfortunate observation of my abuse by his biological father, the disappointment of his lack of involvement after our divorce and the sadness of dealing with his death in 2005) The farthest west DS had been prior to this trip was Oklahoma, where he was born, but he doesn’t remember much of where we lived in the Midwest as we were permanently back in Rhode Island (3/1995) 6 months before his 3rd birthday.
Kyle playing it cool!
So, why the trip name? This trip wasn’t even a thought in the back of our minds (at least not mine) until my aunt called me one day in the fall of 2006 to ask if we would like to use some of her timeshare points that she was going to lose if she didn’t use them. She told us we could use up to 150,000 points; the only stipulation was that we had to book before she lost them. She gave me the website to research destinations. Kyle could have cared less, just as long as he didn’t have to fly. Jeffrey immediately focused on DL, while I tried to explore other options as well…all within the United States as we don’t have Passports…Hawaii…Washington, DC…Lake George, NY… I was afraid that they would be disappointed with DL, but Jeffrey kept going back to the possibility so I agreed. There were only 2 choices in the Anaheim area and after much reading we decided upon Dolphin’s Cove Resort. My aunt couldn’t book it until February 2007, but a major part of our expenses were already going to be taken care of!
So, Christmas 2006 comes along and my aunt drives down from her home in Cherry Valley, NY to spend my dad’s birthday and the holiday with us. We were having a lovely time Christmas morning opening gifts, but imagine our surprise when she gave me a card with a note inside letting us know that she was going to be taking care of our flights to California by using frequent flyer miles she has with Continental Airlines!! We were dumbfounded! What an amazing gift!
With accommodations and airfare taken care of, all we had to worry about was our one night stay in Los Angeles, tickets to attractions, food and transportation! Not quite free, but that’s close enough for me!
So, there you have it…..the 5 W’s of our trip….. Who? Jeffrey, Dyan, & Kyle What? Our Southern California Adventure When? Friday, February 15, 2008 – Saturday, February 23, 2008 Where? Renaissance Hollywood Hotel – Los Angeles (2/15) & Dolphin’s Cove Resort – Anaheim (2/16-2/23) Why? Hmmmm……because Jeffrey made me do it, but it’s almost free for our three!! hee hee
Depart: Providence, RI on Continental Airlines at 4:35pm (Dad will resume his duties as ‘taxi driver’ and will bring us from Warwick to the Providence airport (T.F. Greene), which is actually located in Warwick NOT Providence. ) Arrive: Newark, NJ at 5:58pm Depart: Newark, NJ at 7:10pm Arrive: Los Angeles, CA 10:39pm
After we collect our luggage, we will find Alamo, choose our car for the next week and then drive to the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel – Los Angeles. We have already programmed Jeffrey’s GPS with all of our destinations for this trip, so hopefully this will make getting around in a strange place much easier.
Once we’re finished seeing everything we’d like to see, we’ll collect our luggage from bell services at the Renaissance and head to Anaheim, where we will check into the Dolphin’s Cove Resort. After we check in, we’ll settle into the place that we will call home for the next week.
Day 3 – Sunday, February 17th
We’ll rise bright and early for our 1.5 hour drive to the San Diego Zoo. We will purchase the Best Value Ticket ($34 each, but we’ll receive a AAA discount), which will give us: One Day Admission with unlimited use of Guided Bus Tour, Express Bus, and Skyfari Aerial Tram. We plan to spend our entire day there and then have dinner at the Corvette Diner, where Meggera & her family had such a wonderful time in her TR!
Day 4 – Monday, February 18th
Today starts our time at DLR. I pre-purchased our tickets online. I was able to get us 5-Day Park Hoppers for the price of 3-Day Park Hoppers ($184 each). I figure we’ll use at least 4 of the days, with the 5th as a bonus if we find we have some extra time.
Since today is Presidents’ Day, I figure the park will be pretty busy, so I booked us the tour, “A Walk in Walt’s Footsteps.” I figure it will be a nice introduction to the park for us on our first day, as well. We would like to catch the Electrical Parade in DCA at 7:45pm and then return to DL for Remember at 9:25pm, since these 2 events will only be held on the Monday & Friday. (Fantasmic! is dark during the time we are there.)
Day 5 – Tuesday, February 19th
A full day at DL! We have no plans other than to get there for park opening and to stay until we run out of steam.
Day 6 – Wednesday, February 20th Today we will drive 1 hour to Carlsbad and spend the day at LEGOLAND.
Day 7 – Thursday, February 21st
This morning marks the only day that we have a scheduled meal at DLR. We’ll be having breakfast at Storyteller’s Café in the Grand Californian. I decided on this one based on reading the TR’s from the Girls’ trip last year and from recommendations on the board. I think the characters are also some that Kyle will enjoy seeing, as well. We have an 8:00am PS. We hope to be finished and arrive for 10:00am opening at DCA. We will make time to see Aladdin, as it is only showing Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, while we are there. We will spend the entire day at DCA.
Day 8 – Friday, February 22nd
Our final day in the parks! We plan to arrive for DL park opening and spend the day finishing up the attractions we didn’t get to see at either park over the course of the day. We plan on viewing Remember one last time.
When we get back to Dolphin’s Cove, we will pack everything up so we’re ready to go in the morning. I’d like to avoid any last minute running around.
Day 9 – Saturday, February 23rd
Our last day. Our plane departs LAX at 10:25am, so we’ll have to be up and ready to go early.
Depart: Los Angeles, CA on Continental Airlines at 10:25am Arrive: Newark, NJ at 6:42pm Depart: Newark, NJ at 9:35pm Arrive: Providence, RI 10:43pm
Seeing that we’re arriving at such a late hour, we won’t ask either of our fathers to venture out at that time. We’ll just hail a cab for the 5 minute ride home.
That’s it!! Now, let’s see how true to form we stay!
Up Next: “But we’re not going to Detroit!” and “Not again!!”
Dyan, I didn't know your son is 15yo, too! Isn't that a fun age?? I am lovin' your plans, and I can't wait to read your view of the Walk In Walt's Footsteps tour. I just had a long conversation with my DSis, and we are planning on doing that one as soon as she gets home from Japan.
Me, Goofy and Kaitlyn at Disneyland May 19, 2013 - Kaitlyn's 21st birthday trip!