Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Planning out our Disney : Day 1

When we began to plan this trip-we knew in order to make the most of our times we needed to sit down with our bunch and see what was most important to them. Everyone loves something different. Todd and Madyson are thrill seekers. Aubrie is still all about the princesses. And Mia has 3 things on her list-Goofy, Minnie and Elsa. And me? well truthfully-I love to eat and people watch.

I said in the last update that our SiStter is going with us. Anna is a huge disney fanatic but hasn't experienced some of the classic Disney things so we even asked for her input.

After we knew what everyone wanted to do-Todd and I set down and planned out our days:

We have the park hopper for the first time (as a family) which increases what we can do each day! We have never had it before because the girls were so little and park hopping with littles can be a bit overwhelming. But now we have 2 big girls & Mia thinks she is big and is really good with fast pace-go go go lifestyle so we knew she would handle it well. Tip:: Know your kids. If your kids are slow paced, not good with change-don't waste money on park hopping. Take your time and enjoy each park for a full day. Don't worry, you can leave for nap and return to the same park in the evening.

Another fun thing we have this trip to help with planning is the My Disney Experience App. Last trip, it was still in test mode, but now it is up and running!

With this app you can book reservations, fast passes, create your schedule, everything! Right from your smart phone!  And when you are in the park you can see wait times, character greetings, and find restrooms.


Our flight gets into Orlando VERY early on our first day! We get to just hop on the Magical Express and head over to our resort. I love the Magical Express because you do not have to wait for your luggage-it just magically appears in your room later that day :) 
Once we get all check in
 (if your room is not ready, you still can check-in and they will text you when it is!) 
We head over to Magic Kingdom for Lunch at Be Our Guest!

We will spend the day at Magic Kingdom soaking in the Disney Spirit. 

Then Todd is taking the girls to a surprise trip to Bippity Boppity Boutique. The girls have done the Pirates League (during our trip with friends) and they have asked for a Bippity Boppity Boutique trip for years. Jill helped us score a reservation at the Castle Location-and I can not wait to see my princesses' face when we tell them! 
Tip: Use your time at Disney to create memories with your kids. We decided that this was a perfect opportunity for Todd and the girls to bond over a special time just daddy & his girls

After the girls get made over at the BBB-We have a late dinner reservation at Chef Mickey's. One ride on the monorail and we get to dine with the fab 5. We love doing Chef Mickey's for one reason-you knock out the top 5 characters in one setting. No long lines, no fast passes used. Just dinner and a visit with some of your favorites. And you can't do a trip to Disney without meeting Mickey. I mean, it did all start with just a mouse.

We will head back to the park after dinner and enjoy the fireworks.

Day 1 in the books. Stay tuned for more details :) 

Friday, June 12, 2015

Details!!!

Guys! We are 62 days away from our BIGGEST Disney Trip EVER!

Are you excited? I am.

So to recap-this is 5th Disney Trip as a family!
1) Just the 4 of us
2) With the Grandparents
3) With Friends (when we brought home the greatest souvenir baby #3)
4) Surprise Christmas Trip
5) 10 year celebration!!!

I really, REALLY wanted this trip to be the most special. Todd and I have will be celebrating 10 years of marriage during this trip. 10 YEARS. We have been through so much and really work hard at our marriage that celebrating in a big way, with our munchkins, was the only way we could imagine. So as much planning experience as I have, a lot has changed in the year and half we haven't been to Disney. And I wanted us to experience a whole other side. So that's why I enlisted the help of my friend Jill. Jill is a Disney planner (and other cool things) and an amazing person who loves to create magical experiences. She knows Disney. She loves Disney. And she knows how I am about planning (kinda anal)  so I knew she would take care of us.

Our first plan was to do the Art of Animation Suites (we love this resort) with the deluxe dining plan, because our family loves to eat. We played with some numbers and Todd and I talked it over and we decided we needed to bring our sitter (who is like a sister) with us. 3 kids- needed 3 adults. Plus, we wanted to be able to celebrate like adults (without kids) on our anniversary day.

So we talked over some stuff with Jill and decided to go for it and stay at the contemporary (a dream of ours) and do a smaller dining plan.

We booked Disney and we were so excited! But then we started thinking...maybe 2 rooms would be better, so we could have space.

So we talked to Jill and she was happy to help. She emailed me and it started out with "I am about to save you some money! The Summer room discount rates are about to come out!" What? Save Money going to Disney?! Yes! One of the benefits of having a Disney Planner is that even after you book, if specials come out that you qualify for, they can adjust your planning and save you money.

So we waited a few days then I get the text, "Im so stinking excited for you!"  That's always a good way to start the conversation. She went on to explain that she was able to get us a 2 bedroom Villa at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. Say what? I thought we were saving money. Oh, we were. This upgrade only cost us $51 dollars more than our original package-still under budget, that left us with enough money for plane tickets and to add on a surprise trip to Bippity Boppity Boutique for the girls.



We sent Jill our original dining plan options-which she booked for us. and in 2 days-we get to book fastpasses!

Over the next few weeks, I will be talking about what our days look like, what we have planned for each girl and most importantly, How we plan to do Disney on our anniversary (adult style).


Thursday, March 19, 2015

we are back!!

Oh how I have missed you guys! Life has been crazy busy around our parts! I have stopped blogging about family life (because the big girls aren't too keen on having their lives out for everyone to read) and have moved to blogging about faith & life at www.beyondthelaundrypiles.com.

We have moved to Atlanta, Georgia from Mississippi and I am back working fulltime, oh and I was on a TV show! (check out the new blog under the tab 15 minutes of fame). With all that change last year we did not have a family vacation and in August, Todd and I will be celebrating 10 years of marriage so you know what we knew we had to do...GO BACK TO DISNEY!

I know, I know...Disney for your anniversary. Why not Rome? or Hawaii? Well, because we really truly love Disney.
disney-pin-badge-button-vintage-world-WDW-happy-anniversary-minnie-mickey
And this trip is so special, I have even enlisted help in planning. My good friend Jill is a travel agent for Disney and she has helped me plan the most amazing trip! Our babysitter is tagging along on this vacation because with 3 kids-we need 3 adults! And she is going to hang out with the girls and take them around while Todd and I get some fun dates at our favorite place.

So yah!!! I am excited to be documenting a new chapter of our DISNEY LIFE! Over the coming weeks Ill be sharing all the amazing details and fun things Jill has come up with for us to do!

Less than 150 days away! Mickey here we come!!!!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Day 2 at Disney!

Day 2 at Disney we visited magic Kingdom.

This trip was really different. For 1 the girls didn't want to stop and see every character. They were more interested in the rides. 

Which makes me think we will have to take Mia back later so she can have her pictures with pooh, piglet and the characters like the big girls do.

Anyway-we arrived at park opening and headed straight to new fantasyland.

They still are working on the seven dewarfs mine ride. I feel like this roller coaster is going to be awesome-or a big let down. It has taken the longest time. 3 trips-still not complete. But it is closer than before. (Positive right?)

We rode the new Ariel ride, met Ariel, rode dumbo,
barnstormer, Peter Pan, pooh, teacups. We had breakfast at Gastons tavern. The cinnamon rolls are awesome! Split one! 
We did enchanted tales with belle-aubrie was chip! It was adorable.

..then we has lunch at the beast castle. It is set up as quick service for lunch and it was amazing! 

After that, the waits got LONG. When people tell you Christmas week is the busiest time-it is. Honestly in the dead of summer during our last 3 trips-it has not been near as bad as this one. Waits were over 180 minutes for some rides. Good thing this wasn't our first trip and we were prepared for this.

We watched all the parades and enjoyed sight seeing all the Christmas decorations. 

We hopped on the monorail to grand Floridian to see the giant gingerbread house and the decorations there. 

We met some princesses. At the new storybook hall you can get in Cinderella and guest line or Rapunel and guest line. We chose Cinderella this day.

We rode splash mountain and big thunder railroad.

Our dinner plan was to eat at Casey's hotdog on main street-but they took the Chicago dog off the menu. So we ate at Pecos bills. We had taco salads-and BBQ sandwiches. They were okay-nothing like flametree at animal kingdom.

After that we got our seats for the electrical parade and fireworks. We say right in front of the castle. And let me say-the crowds are worth it to see the castle lit up for Christmas.

It snowed on main street and it was so much fun to see the girls reactions! 

We left there after 16 hours! And we were exhausted!

Now-magic bands.

I was stoked to get to test magic bands. On site guest get them now-soon they will be available for others. They are a braclet with a chip in it. Everyone wears them and it is your room key, dining ticket, fast pass and photo pass all in one. You touch it to a little round mickey and boom-your in.
The positives. These are awesome to keep you from having to keep up with everything. They are waterproof. And they are comfortable. (Also I asked and if your child gets lost, they can track them)

The negatives. With these you can only have 3 fast passes a day. Before you were limited by hour/timeframe. If you don't space them out correctly and stay 16 hours...you are bored and the waits are 180 minutes.

So lesson: plan your day with fast passes for the entire frame you plan to be at the park-and plan to wait during the other times.

Day 3-is next! Stay tuned!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Disney 2013 Christmas surprise!

We were stoked to wake up Christmas morning to find these!
We opened the one that said "open me first" and it was a letter from Santa saying we were going to Disney!!! We unwrapped the rest of our loot magic bands, new Disney wear, Disney headbands game, new backpacks full of stuff for the plane...and we headed to the airport.

Our flight took 1 hour and 45 minutes! Such a change from the 12 hour drive! 

When we got to the airport we had to scan our magic bands to check in to the magical express. Then we were whisked away to our resort.
We stayed at the Art of Animation resort. Here is my review. 
It is an amazingly awesome resort. You feel the Disney love at every inch of that place. The pools are amazing (there are 3.) the decor is simply stunning.
We stayed at the little mermaid section. (Also there is Nemo, Cars and lion king) Santa chose little mermaid because he heard the girls saying they wanted to stay there. Note: you walk a heck of a way if you stay at little mermaid. If you want to stay close to the buses and food-choose Nemo. 

We rented a stroller again and once we picked it up and pottied we headed to Epcot!

I love to start at Epcot because it gives you a good, relaxing intro to the happiest place in the world. 

We rode soaring, Nemo, spaceship earth, maelstrom...we are ice cream and dined in Mexico! It was an awesome first day!

Come back tomorrow for day 2 and more on the magic bands!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The crazyness

Yall-Life is simply crazy right now! You all know how I am a huge planner-as in usually by now I am making list and packing and doing all the fun stuff!

Well-a few weeks ago-we decided to move-out of out state-(crazy? Read about it here)

So I am packing...just not for Disney! I am packing to move! Crazy I know!

I had a sweet blogger ask me how this was going to impact the vacation-well without giving away detail-let me share :)

Todd moves to our new house and new state in a week-the girls and I will stay in Mississippi til December so they can finish out school. They get out of school on the 20th-and we will remain here til Christmas Day-When we leave for Disney-

So not only am I packing I am having to secretly pack our Disney stuff as well-Good thing they go to school for 7 hours a day :)

Starting in December, I will start to reveal a little more about our surprise plans!

Anyone else traveling to Disney over the holidays??

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

We are getting Close!

Y'all-I am the worst secret keeper EVER. I mean EVER. I have kept the secret of our surprise Disney Trip for almost a year now and I am almost to the point of BUST.

Every day-Literally-for the past 420+days my girls have asked "When are we going back to Disney." We began planning our upcoming trip on Christmas Day last year. We have booked Dining Reservations-We are flying this time (something new for us!) and now I have moved into planning the actual surprise.

I have watched countless youtube videos on parents surprising their kids with a Disney trip-and while some have made me so happy I cried (like for real) others have been a bit of a let down.

I know-without a shadow of a doubt-If I pull this off-we will have the ultimate Disney surprise.

This year Todd's Stepdad is joining us for our trip! He has never been to Disney and I am so excited he is coming along!! This will be our shortest trip to Disney-but since we are "seasoned visitors" and grandaddy is a newbie and its the busiest week of the year....We are really going for the experience this year. The girls have done everything (except for new fantasyland) so I feel like it's going to be a nice trip!

This will also be our *Disney Baby's* First trip to Disney World! I am so excited to take her and have her photo made with Minnie! She LOVES Minnie!

Are you planning a trip soon??