Hawaii Here I Come! TR July/Aug 2011 UPDATED 8/23 - PassPorter - A Community of Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel Forums
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:17 PM   #1
Dlandmom2
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Hawaii Here I Come! TR July/Aug 2011 UPDATED 8/23

Hi All! Ok, I'm inspired to write a PTR for my upcoming trip to Hawaii! I started a TR for my first (and only, so far) trip to WDW back in January 2009, but I just never got around to finishing it. I just don't know how you all do it! I so love the excitement of reading everyone else's PTR's and TR's and waiting expectantly for the next installment, so I thought I'd try to "return the favor" and share my craziness as I prepare for my upcoming trip! It's the least I can do after enjoying your TR's for so many years!

By the way, I have to give a shout-out to Melanie (Principessa_di_Fata) because not only does she do a PTR, but she also does a LIVE TR complete with photos! Holy cow, Batman, how do you do it?!

I also like how others have done their updates in larger fonts, because that makes it easy to follow along. For some reason, though, I can't change the color of my text. Is there some trick to it? It only allows me to do black. Oh well, hopefully someone can come along with some ideas on what I'm doing wrong! It would be great if I could do my posts in Pineapple Orange or Rainbow, but I think that would get old pretty quick, huh?

So, the trip is going to be a week on the Big Island in Waikoloa, followed by three more nights in Honolulu on Oahu. There will be quite a cast of characters between the two islands, and I'm hoping that I'll have a chance to visit Aulani and see how construction is coming along there.

I've never posted pictures before (I'm big on the privacy thing, but I think I'm becoming adventurous in my old age, so there's a big possibility that I may actually post up my first photos in the TR portion later on). So if I'm understanding how picture posting works, I need to open a Shutterfly account, and then I download pictures from my camera to my computer, then I upload my pictures to Shutterfly, and then I attach the Shutterfly pictures to my post? Does that sound right?

A little background on me, I spent 10+ years in the corporate world where I was spoiled by having an IT department...if I needed help, I picked up my phone and called IT. If anything needed to get done, just call Jeannie...she'll do the impossible! My trick? I bribed the IT department and the Mailroom. Those of you in corporate will understand...without the help of IT and the Mailroom, nothing will get done! I brought them donuts on a regular basis! Seriously, though, I truly believe that you're only as good as the people who work for you and with you. Don't ever get a big head...it'll be your downfall if you're not careful. But, enough about my corporate past, I've been MOM for over 11 years now, and it's the hardest job I've ever done!

Anyhow, I believe in trying to learn things for myself, but honestly, in the last 10+ years after I left the corporate world, technology has changed so much, and not having to work day to day on my computer has left me quite lazy as to how things work online!

Another thing you'll learn about me (if you haven't figured it out already), I tend to ramble. I'm very stream of consciousness when I write. Isn't Faulkner the stream of consciousness writer (English majors, help me!)?

Anyhow, forgive my rambling, I hope you find it entertaining, though! I hope I have the stamina to finish this thing all the way through to the end of my trip! Wish me luck on finding enough to talk about in the last 30+ days until my trip! If I don't follow through, I hope some of you will kick my proverbial behind until I finish!

Next: Cast of Characters!
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:30 PM   #2
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Great start now I can't wait to read more .
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:30 PM   #3
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Great start! Your trip sounds wonderful. You have the photo idea right-- you can use Shutterfly or Photobucket and just copy into your TR. I had a lot of trouble figuring out how to do this and the PassPorter technical wizards helped me out. Just post your question in the "Garage: Technical Support" forum. The answers appear like magic! Looking forward to meeting your cast.
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Old 06-18-2011, 10:48 PM   #4
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Great start! Looking forward to hearing more - and seeing what you see of Aulani!
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Old 06-19-2011, 03:21 AM   #5
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Great start - what a wonderful trip!

I use Photobucket to upload my photos and that's what I'd recommend.
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Old 06-19-2011, 11:28 AM   #6
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Great start! Another vote for Photobucket for pictures. If you want to change the color of your font, either change it in your processor (like Word) and then copy and paste, otherwise you can copy the text from Word, and paste it into the "quick reply" at the end of the thread. You should be able to change the color there (but not in the Go Advanced box).
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:52 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone! I love all your TR's, so I've got some big shoes to fill! I'll have to check out both Shutterfly and Photobucket and see what I like better.

On to the Cast of Characters!

Big Island Portion

Jeannie (Me, the Mom)
Patrick (the Dad)
Sophia (the Daughter)
Evan (the Son)
James (the BiL, Patrick's brother)
Sherry (the SiL, James' wife)
Alexander (my nephew)

Oahu Portion

Jeannie (Me, the Mom)
Sophia (the Daughter)
Evan (the Son)
Perri (my Brother)
Minnie (my SiL with a cool name!)
Baby D (my Nephew who's now almost a toddler, but we still think of him as a baby!)
Baby To Be Named (my Niece to be born!)

I'm the Disney nut and travel planner. I'm obsessive about planning. I like to plan just for the sake of planning. Even if I don't have an actual trip in the works, I like to research things in general just so I know what to expect when I start planning! I'm also the food planner...I'd say I'm just shy of being considered a foodie. I'm all about trying new stuff and then trying to replicate it at home. You can consider me a wannabe gourmand. On my only trip to WDW (so far!), I did all the food planning. Every ADR was a home run. Patrick took a crack at picking something off property one night...let's just say, that restaurant has become the butt of many jokes when we talk about that WDW trip! It's not that it was awful, but it was sorta sub-par, and compared to all the ADRs I had made, it just seemed pretty bad by comparison!

Patrick likes outdoors stuff. He runs, he hikes, he climbs. If I can find something outdoorsy for him to do, he's good.

My kids are future Disney nuts. I've taught them well! They love all things Disney. This will be Sophia's 5th trip to Hawaii (don't ask, she's one lucky gal) and Evan's 2nd.

James is a Disney nut like me. He used to be a Disneyland CM before I knew him. He says I'm the big sis he always wanted. He loves that I'm all about the food. He trusts me to make all the best food decisions. I haven't let him down yet!

Sherry's the artist. She's an incredibly talented jewelry designer and makes the most amazing things in her studio. She's super creative and is a big kid really. She's the big sister Sophia always wanted.

Alexander is the Energizer Bunny. That kid has so much energy it's unreal. He says that "Uncle Pat" is his favorite uncle. When he was 3, he was talking with the vocabulary of an adult...no joke.

Perri moved to Oahu about 7 or 8 years ago (he and I are California natives). He loves it there. I love that he's there, because now I have a built in excuse to visit Hawaii more than I normally would!

Minnie is awesome. She's never tired. If she wants something, she goes at it until it's done. Now she's about to have baby #2. I don't think that'll slow her down one bit!

Baby D was a buddha baby...that's what we called him! He had so many rolls of fat when he was an infant that he looked like a little buddha statue! He's lengthened a bit and lost most of the rolls of fat, but he's still the most adorable little kid!

The Big Island cast is the same group that went to WDW in 2009 on my first ever trip there. We all get along well, so we were game to try another trip. We visited Big Island together once before, I think it was in 2007.

Come to think of it, Perri and Minnie actually overlapped a few days on that WDW trip. I totally forgot about that until now!

Up Next: How This Trip Came About
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Disneyland 60th Anniversary Celebration TR here!
2013 WDW trip here!
2011 trip to Hawaii here!
My Countdown Counting down to: Hopefully My 3rd WDW Trip with the Kids!
My Previous TripsWDW Nov 2013 OKW and POR; Jan 2009 Offsite at HGVC then Beach Club; not listing DLR...I don't think I can count that high!

Last edited by Dlandmom2; 06-19-2011 at 08:56 PM..
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Old 06-19-2011, 09:06 PM   #8
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Sounds like a fun group! How old are the kids?
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Old 06-19-2011, 10:25 PM   #9
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Oh how fun! I am dying to go to Hawaii but it will be a long time before I get to go... so I will live vicariously through you!

I'm glad I could inspire you with my PTR's and Live TR's. I enjoy live TR's because I love to relive the day - and frankly because my memory is SO bad that if I don't write it up when I'm thinking of it, then odds are I cannot recall it at all.

I'm really excited about this! Can't wait to read along with you! So far the cast sounds wonderful! I wish *I* had family in Hawaii! Wanna adopt me?
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Old 06-19-2011, 10:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauriep View Post
Sounds like a fun group! How old are the kids?
Oops! I forgot about ages! I'm not positive about everyone's age, but here goes:

I'm 44.
Pat's 45.
Sophia's 11
Evan's 7 (and I made a mistake, this is his 3rd trip...how the heck did my kids get so spoiled?!)
James is 40ish.
Sherry is 40ish.
Alexander is 5.
Perri is 37.
Minnie is 30ish.
Baby D is almost 2.
Baby To Be Named is due to arrive some time around this trip!
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Huge Disney Fan...Always Have Been...Always Will Be!

Disneyland 60th Anniversary Celebration TR here!
2013 WDW trip here!
2011 trip to Hawaii here!
My Countdown Counting down to: Hopefully My 3rd WDW Trip with the Kids!
My Previous TripsWDW Nov 2013 OKW and POR; Jan 2009 Offsite at HGVC then Beach Club; not listing DLR...I don't think I can count that high!
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Old 06-19-2011, 10:45 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Principessa_di_Fata View Post
Oh how fun! I am dying to go to Hawaii but it will be a long time before I get to go... so I will live vicariously through you!

I'm glad I could inspire you with my PTR's and Live TR's. I enjoy live TR's because I love to relive the day - and frankly because my memory is SO bad that if I don't write it up when I'm thinking of it, then odds are I cannot recall it at all.

I'm really excited about this! Can't wait to read along with you! So far the cast sounds wonderful! I wish *I* had family in Hawaii! Wanna adopt me?
I guess that's the benefit of living in California (and 30 minutes from DLR!). It's a little "easier" for me to get to Hawaii, just like it's "easier" for you to get to DC!

When I read your PTR's and TR's, I so GET your humor, and your food choices, and your planning, and your thinking, and...are you sure you're not my long lost twin or something?! Anyhow, I'll be happy to adopt you if your mom will adopt me and let me at some of those flying perqs!!!

You know how you're all about safety and not giving out too much info while you're on your trips...I'm sorta like that too, and that's part of the reason I don't post much. I can be kinda shy, but once I'm on a roll, you'd never know it!

I just read and read and read and absorb everything I see on PP. I figure it's about time I give back to everyone who's given me so much info and entertainment for all the years I've been reading this board!
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Huge Disney Fan...Always Have Been...Always Will Be!

Disneyland 60th Anniversary Celebration TR here!
2013 WDW trip here!
2011 trip to Hawaii here!
My Countdown Counting down to: Hopefully My 3rd WDW Trip with the Kids!
My Previous TripsWDW Nov 2013 OKW and POR; Jan 2009 Offsite at HGVC then Beach Club; not listing DLR...I don't think I can count that high!
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Old 06-20-2011, 12:43 AM   #12
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What a great cast of characters!
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My Countdown Counting down to: 2019
Happy New Year!
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My Previous Trips21 trips to WDW, 6 to Disneyland in California, 9 to Disneyland Paris, 1 to Hong Kong Disneyland, 1 to Tokyo Disney, 1 to Aulani, 1 to Hilton Head, 2 to Vero Beach and 13 Disney cruises on the Magic, Wonder, Dream and Fantasy
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Old 06-20-2011, 07:48 AM   #13
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Great cast of characters!
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:06 PM   #14
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So how did this trip come about?

Well, first of all, Sherry and her mom are members of the Hilton Grand Vacations Club (HGVC). Back in 2007, I think, they hadn't used their points for that year, so they offered to share them with us in return for splitting the annual maintenance fees with them. I can't remember whose idea it was to go to Hawaii, but that's where we decided to go. We had the option of staying in the HGVC in Honolulu or the one in Waikoloa on the Big Island. I had stayed at the Hilton Waikoloa Resort before and loved it there. The HGVC was just down the road from the hotel, and HGVC guests can use the hotel pool area. It was an easy decision. The 7 of us (same Big Island Cast) had a blast.

In 2009, the same cast went to WDW using the HGVC points. It was my first trip there, and even though we spent 9 nights there, I missed a lot on my must-do list but I knew I'd be back again someday! As coincidence would have it, Perri and Minnie decided to go there too, and our trips overlapped by 2 days, so we were able to spend a little time together at the parks.

Well, this year, Sherry and her mom had unused points again, so Sherry asked if we wanted to travel again. No one could come up with a new destination. I voted for WDW again, but no one else was too enthusiastic about it...well, James sort of was, but once you add the cost of park tickets and all the ADRs we'd inevitably want to make, cost savings won out since we could do a lot more "free" vacationing by the beaches in Hawaii.

We didn't make our HGVC reservations until early spring, as there was still a possibility that Sherry's mom might use the points. Once we knew we could use the points, Sherry and I looked at the availability of HGVC in Waikoloa and were disappointed that the week we wanted (first week of August) was booked. We settled for the last 4 days of July. I figured I could just head over to Honolulu afterwards and spend a few days with Perri and his family. Plus, since Baby To Be Named is due to arrive some time in late July, we might actually be able to see her too! Well, Sherry was not one to give up, so a few days after we made the HGVC reservation, she called back to say that she found 3 more nights at King's Land, which I guess is yet another HGVC in the Waikoloa area. So now, we had 3 nights at King's Land and 4 nights at the other HGVC in Waikoloa (I think there's 3 HGVC properties there, but the one we're at is not the Bay Club one...I can't remember what ours is called, but I'll figure it out before we get there).

Then, since it would be silly to go all the way to Hawaii and not visit my brother, I still wanted to hop over to Oahu and spend a little time with him. Hopefully, Baby To Be Named will have arrived, but whether or not she's here, I figure it will help out Perri and Minnie if I take Baby D out a few times to give them a little break. Hopefully Baby D won't mind spending time with Aunt Jeannie...I saw him last about a month or so ago when he was here for his first visit to Disneyland! Hopefully he'll remember me and want to go out with me for a little bit.

Now, I had to figure out where we'd stay on Oahu. Yes, we could've stayed at Perri's house, but really, if you just had a baby or are about to have a baby, the last thing you need is house guests! I'm a Hilton Honors member, but I haven't traveled much since I left the corporate world, so I don't have a lot of points racked up. However, I do have a Hilton credit card, and I do know how to spend! So, in the last 3 or so months, I've put every single purchase I could on my Hilton card (which I pay off every month) and between what points I already had, what points I've accumulated in the last 3 or so months, and what points I could transfer over from an affiliated credit card, I now have enough points to get 3 nights at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Resort in Honolulu! Yahoooooooo! So, the next thing I need to do is make that reservation!

Up Next: Our Flights...Too Bad Driving There Isn't An Option!
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:50 AM   #15
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Great plans - your accommodation sounds wonderful!
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