As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.
So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.
Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.
And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.
We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm. You made it all happen.
There are other changes as well.
Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:
We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.
It's time to move on and move forward.
PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.
But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.
So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.
And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.
That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!
If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.
So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!
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I am going to attempt to write a TR while actually on vacation, we'll see how this goes.
Here's the cast of characters:
Ally (me), 28, NICU PA
Jon, 27, works in Biotech
Kristin, 28, Peds Physical Therapist
Katie, 2, Jon and Kristin's DD
Scott, 28, ER MD
Dee, 28, Occupational Therapist
David, 19m, Scott and Dee's DS
Christina, 29, Ultrasound Tech
Pete, 29, Mechanical Engineer
That's right, 7 adults and 2 children With the exception of Pete, we all went to college together and have been friends for the past 6 years. But, this is the first vacation we have all taken together. We went to college in Maine, and all love the area so it was a no-brainer for us to choose Vacationland as our destination. Though, finding a place to rent that would accomodate all of us was not easy. But, the fates were smiling on us because we finally found a house on Barter's Island, which is near Boothbay Harbor.
Early Saturday morning I headed to Christina and Pete's house and we loaded up Christina's car to drive the 5 hours from CT to ME. I offered to drive up since we weren't using my car. Scott and Dee drove the 6 hours up from PA to where Kristin and Jon live in Maine on Friday and stayed there overnight, and they would only have a 2 hour drive to Boothbay on Saturday.
Finally around 2:30pm we pulled into the driveway of our home for the week:
Front and side of the house.
Views from the house and upper yard
Views from the dock
So that's the outside. The house itself is older and built in many sections. There are 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bath, a large eat-in kitchen, and 3 sitting rooms.
Once everyone had gotten to the house and settled in we went grocery shopping and came back to make ziti for dinner. We didn't do much that first night, everyone was pretty tired. We played some Scrabble (some very inappropriate Scrabble...this would become a theme) and then called it a night.
Cont in next post...
Last edited by unewillow; 08-25-2010 at 06:11 PM..
Our Sunday started early, about 6am, when the kids woke up and started screaming. It's hard for them to be in an odd place and not in their own beds. The weather was already shaping up to be cool and cloudy, but that wasn't going to stop us from enjoying our coffee on the deck.
We all had some breakfast and generally hung about reading or entertaining the kids until about lunch time. Dee, Scott, and Pete decided they wanted to take the kayaks out since the dun was trying to peak out from behind the clouds.
Now, you can kind of see that there's starting to not be a lot of water by the dock, but they decided to go anyway. Well, after about 45 minutes they got back and there was NO water left by the float. They had to "mud" it back pulling their kayaks behind them.
Notice Jon standing down there to "help" them. In actuality, he was laughing his but off. Apparently that mud was also quite itchy when it started to dry.
After lunch we headed down into town to wander around a bit and shop. Katie made a friend at the T-shirt shop.
By about 6pm though the shops were closing and it was starting to rain so we went back to the house and made taco salad for dinner and then played some Phase 10 and more dirty Scrabble. Another night was ended around 10pm when we crashed out.
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I tried writing this earlier and then my computer ate it
Monday morning we woke up to cloudy grey skies and occassional sprinkles. The wind was also a bit chilly, so we all decided that today was a perfect day to go to the Maine State Aquarium. Now, I love aquariums and I knew that this was not going to be a big aquarium but...wow. One large octagonal room, and that was it. And it was packed. I will say though, their touch tanks were awesome and the saving grace of this trip.
It was getting cold and increasingly rainy as the day went on so we went back to the house for naps and to hang out until dinner. We decided that this would be our first dinner out. We chose a place called McSeagulls because their menu is pretty darn expansive. I know everyone had something different and we all enjoyed what we had. I had the Lobster Mac & Cheese which was FABULOUS. It's served in a home-made bread bowl with chees baked into the sides. Very yummy.
As you can see the kids REALLY liked their corn on the cob.
After dinner we went back to the house and I crashed early and they stayed up to watch movies.
Tuesday morning dawned bright and sunny and finally WARM We got up to about 70 degrees today and we decided it was a good day to go to the Botanical Gardens. We had a fabulous time, as the sunburn on my neck/chest/back can attest to. The gardens are very expansive, they cover 250 acres with multiple gardens and walking trails.
If anyone is in the area and looking for something to do, especially with little kids (their Children's Garden is amazing) I would highly recommend the gardens.
At the Entrance
Artichokes in the Burpee Kitchen Garden. The smells here were wonderful, sage and thyme and basil.
Rocks carved as whales that spray water out the top
Playing in the tree fort.
Playing in the infinity pool.
Climbing the rocks
Christina, Pete and I went back to the house for lunch and after a brief stint of being locked out, finally were able to go in and eat. Everyone else went to the beach for lunch, but they didn't stay super long because the weather was going back to the cloudy side of things.
For dinner we had decided to do LOBSTAH
There's nothing like getting a whole lobster all to yourself and tearing it apart. After dinner we broke out the fire pit and lit it up to make S'mores.
It was a great day, finally with some good weather. I can't believe I got sunburnt, but it was my own fault for not thinking to put on sunblock. I wish the weather had stayed nice the whole day, but we knew it was going to get bad again tomorrow.
Next up...Rain, Rain, Go Away
Last edited by unewillow; 08-25-2010 at 08:02 PM..
As predicted, the rain came back today, fast and furious. In fact by the end of the day we were all soaked to the bone despite our jackets. So, what do you do when it raining out? Go shopping of course!
Our first stop was Edgecomb Pottery, which is beautiful, but too expensive. Kristin knew of a place up by where her parents live in Waldoboro that had nice pottery for a reasonale price. I think we all ended up buying something. I ended up with a bowl for my mom and a mug for myself.
I bought the middle size for my mom.
I bought the leaves design for myself. Though, I think my mug is a little taller than these.
After the potters, we went to Sweetgrass Winery and did a wine tasting...because we like our wines.
Yet again we all bought something, I ended up getting the Cranberry Smash Port. I am not a huge fan of wine but this was good. Very sweet though, definately for sipping. And of course, this is what happens when you come home from a wine tasting and before you eat dinner (seafood stuffed haddock, yumm-o)...
The plan for the rest of tonight is movies, brownies, and maybe some Cranium. We are hoping for better weather tomorrow so we can go on a Whale Watch.
Today was the day we were waiting for, sunny, clear and warm. We were all up early so that we could get the kids fed and ready to leave the house by 8:30am because today, we were going on a Whale Watch.
We had decided on the Boothbay Whale Watch Company (there are many, many different companies that run boats) and our boat was the Harbour Princess. The tour started at 9:30am and we were out for about 4 hours.
I was a little worried because I get horribly seasick and the Cpt. told us that after yesterday's storm there were about 5 ft swells out there. But, I had taken some Meclizine and I was going to brave it. Wouldn't you know, I was the ONLY person who didn't feel horrible on the trip.
We saw Menke Whales and Harbour Seals
As we moved out of open water and back into the harbour everyone started to feel better and we snapped some pics of the kids enjoying the boat.
And a better shot of the lighthouse on the way back in.
After the boat tour we went back to the house and had lunch. The kids and the boys took naps and Kristin, Christina, and I went back down to Boothbay to look in the shops we had missed the other day because of the rain. I bought some YUMMY popcorn
Pete made us ribs for dinner, which were yummy, and I had a headache so I crashed early, but everyone else went out to enjoy the fire pit again.
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