Fun, Family and Firsts--Our Oct ’10 TR - UPDATED 11/16
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Hello! Thanks for joining me as we relive our October ’10 travels to ...
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Fun, Family and Firsts--Our Oct ’10 TR - UPDATED 11/16
Fun, Family and Firsts--Our Oct ’10 TR
Hello! Thanks for joining me as we relive our October ’10 travels to the Happiest Place on Earth. I am Stacey (34). I have always declared Disneyworld to be my favorite place in the whole world. I went when I was in first and fifth grade and then not again until my freshman year in college. I went with a friend for spring break, stayed off property and only spent one day in MK, but we spent every night at Pleasure Island.
So here it is more than 15 years since my last visit. I’d been trying for years to convince my husband we needed to take the kids. He had never been, so he didn’t get “it”. The older kids had been asking for couple of years, “When are we going to go and see Mickey?” DH told them we’d go when Carter learned to walk and we had saved enough money. Well, of course once Carter started walking in the winter of ’09 the kids reminded Daddy of what he had said. Now his excuse was the cost. I should also mention that it was always said that when we decided to go my parents were for sure coming too which meant my brother and his family would also tag along.
I had priced out a trip last winter, but no one was ready. When free dining was announced this spring, my price shopping turned into reservations. I made everyone’s reservations thinking that for sure they would be cancelled, but much to my surprise, everyone was in!!! Uh, oh...How to tell DH?
When I broached the reservations he flat out said, “No!” in his defense, he was just about to quit his job so we could run our business full time, so it probably wasn’t the best time to plan a rather expensive vacation, but the kids would be 7, 5, and 2 and that seemed the perfect ages. I think it was my crying that finally allowed me to at least put down (a fully refundable) deposit. I also had to promise to bring in a certain amount of new business (we clean floors) by our payment deadline of August 15. Long story short, I brought in the business and saved enough to pay for 80% of the trip so we were on! Disney here we come!! The All-Star Sports resort would be welcoming our Grand Gathering from October 2-9, 2010.
So let me introduce our cast of characters:
Planner: That’s me! I got to make all the ADR, scour message boards, acquire touring plans and schedule our week. I had never been to AK or HS. In my life before children, I taught 2nd grade. Since becoming a Mom, I’ve been fortunate enough to stay at home with the kids. We started our business, Floor Restore, in September ’08. We clean tile & grout, concrete and carpet here in the great state of Minnesota. So between running a business and raising three kids, I’m pretty busy. Oh--My favorite character is Goofy.
Mark (34): He’s my wonderful husband, who truly works harder than anyone I know. He had never been to Disney. We have been married for almost 10 years. He coaches our son’s hockey and baseball teams. And because people seem to think it’s interesting...He’s Canadian. We met while on vacation in Puerto Vallarta. On the flight down I laughed at my horoscope which read, “You will fall head over heels in long distance love.” Who am I to challenge fate? Mark’s favorite character is Grumpy.
Braydon (7): He’s our oldest and loves hockey, football, and baseball. He has such a kind soul, but can be so very stubborn. He’s had glasses since he was 2 because of a lazy eye and got braces last summer. He’s also on the Spectrum, but those traits rarely show themselves these days. His favorite characters are Buzz and Lightning, but he has a definite soft spot for Mickey.
Kaylin (5): She is a girl in every sense of the word. She loves to dress up and creates songs and dances all the time. Everyone who meets her loves her. She could not love the Princesses any more. Ariel and Cinderella are her favorites.
Carter (2): He’s my little spitfire. He talks all the time and always has a look in his eyes that keeps us on our toes. He also decided, with less than three weeks before our trip, that he was done with diapers. Taking a newly potty trained kiddo to Disney was never on my radar, but hey, we’d just go with it. Carter loves Mickey Mouse, or as he says, “Ickey Ouse.”
Nancy (57): My Mom and the most wonderful Mom/Grandma ever. Sure, she has a hard time saying no to the kids, but I guess that’s a grandma’s perrogative. My parents and brother got to sneak up to Disney once during my brother’s spring break baseball trips. The hit MK/HS one day so they hadn’t been away quite as long. My Mom loves Pooh!
Jeff (57): My Dad and the most wonderful man in the entire world. I totally lucked out when I got to be his daughter. My Dad has severe RA, he had a heart attack 4 years ago, has a very bad neck/back from a car accident and has had a headache ever since he was in the Las Vegas MGM fire when I was 3. To top it off, he has Plantar Faciatis in both feet. So he’s pretty much a wreck and walking is painful. Walking all day? I can’t even imagine. But he is also very proud and there was no way he was renting a scooter. He loves, loves, loves Tigger.
Adam (31): My little brother. He and my Dad run a construction business. Adam loves baseball and spending time with his family and friends. He’s a great friend and a wonderful Daddy. Adam’s favorite hands down is Donald Duck.
Anna (31): My wonderful SIL. She is beyond kind and generous. We are in the process of starting a photography business. We love photos and people keep telling us we need to get paid, so what the heck!
Abby (4): My niece. She is quiet and very shy, but she certainly notices everything. A fellow Princess lover. Our girls are “Best Cousins” and will be until they’re Moms. (We’ve yet to get out of them what happens after that.) Abby loves Belle.
Avery (14 months): Niece #2. Avery is sitting this trip out. So she isn't pictured, but she still needed to be mentioned.
Whew! You’ve made it this far thanks for reading!!
Wonderful beginning. I'm excited to hear all about your trip.
We are taking our 4 year old in March along with my parents. My Dad just had a kidney transplant and my mom has a mirad of health issues. They are determined to go and have a good time. I hope your Dad was able to do so.
Once the deposit was made, I just knew there was no way we wouldn't go. I was also bound and determined to keep this a secret from the kids as I didn't want to deal with months of, "Is it time yet?" So for months I planned in secret, made t-shirts on the sly, and hid Disney travel trinkets all around the house.
As our travel day drew closer we had to start telling people we would be gone and then ask them to keep the secret. I had to dodge quite a few conversations as people wanted to talk about our trip in front of the kids, but luckily the kids remained unaware of our plans.
So how do I pack without them getting suspicous? Let’s just say I turned into a pretty decent liar. Kaylin walked in on me packing about a week before we left. I told her I was packing the summer clothes into the attic in our suitcases. She shared the news with her brother who proceeded to bring me all his summer clothes because he needed more room in his drawers.
Finally, it was Friday, October 1st. Our flight left at 8am the next morning. I’m usually a night before packer, so to be packed days ahead of time is unheard of. We had a house sitter coming to stay with our St Bernard Bella, so the house had to be spic and span too. By 9pm the house was ready and I was so excited I could hardly stand it. The neighbors were outside so I went bouncing over there for a bit. Around 11 I thought I should get some sleep. But who was I kidding? I couldn’t even lay still. It was worse than a kid on Christmas Eve. DH even went to sleep on the couch because I wouldn’t stop talking.
It was well after midnight before I finally fell asleep and I found myself wide awake at 4:30, well in advance of the alarm. I finally gave in and got up. Our neighbors were driving us to the airport and were to arrive at 6:15. At 6:05 we started waking the kids and getting them dressed. None were happy to be awakened at that hour. By 6:15 all three were up and dressed in Disney apparel head to toe (I made sure we each had a new Disney shirt for each day of our trip.) but they were all still quite dazed.
As we loaded them into the car, they started to wonder where we were going. We simply said it was a surprise. The oldest moaned, “I know where we’re going and I don’t want to go to Disney on ice again.” At least he noticed that we were all wearing Mickey. We arrived at the airport and managed to check in without the kids finding out where we were going. They had no idea Grandma, Grandpa, Uncle Adam, Auntie Anna, and Abby would soon be arriving. We’d just gotten rid of our suitcases when the rest of the family arrived. By this time the kids were awake and very excited to see everyone else. They checked in and we thought it was time for the big reveal. Grandma had gotten everyone new backpacks: Princesses, Buzz, and Phineas and Ferb.
With their new backpacks on, we lined them up and made them guess where we were going. Blank stares looked back until Abby whispered, “Disneyworld?” We made her say it louder and we told her she was right. At this point I expected lots of whooping and shouting, but I think it took quite awhile to set in because there was no overwhelming, commercial worthy celebrating.
Oh well! By the time we got through security, grabbed breakfast and made a bathroom stop the flight was boarding. Excellent! No waiting. The kids did amazingly well on the flight. We came prepared with 2 DVD players and backpacks full of new things to do, but hardly any of it was used. They were most excited to discover their lanyards and pins. Each spent most of the flight checking out their pins and putting them on their lanyards. (I got them each around 20 pins and I got 10 lanyards for $12 shipped of E-Bay.) I knew nothing about pin trading, but it sounded fun. Little did I know just how fun it would be. We landed right on time and made our way to DME. Yes, we were really going to Disneyworld!!
Up Next: MK Here We Come!
Last edited by home4us123; 11-08-2010 at 05:49 AM..