Campbell family trip 2011


#1

I am so ready for this trip - I can’t even begin to describe it (luckily, I don’t have to - you all understand)!

I decided to do a pre-trip report and will come back and fill in with details and pictures during/after the trip.

Cast:
Sarah (me, 38)
Mark (DH, 40)
Maia (DD, turns 11 on the trip)
Emma (DD, just turned 8)

This is our 5th trip to WDW. Our 1st trip was January 2004, Mark had been once when he was a child. We are not using DDP and do not have park hoppers. DDP just wasn’t cost effective for us when I did the math. We’ve never had park hoppers, so we don’t know what we are missing and don’t want to spend the extra money for them. It’s never been a problem wanting to be able to hop in the past, so I think we’ll be fine this trip as well.

Our goal this trip is to try new things. I’ll highlight the new things we do as we go! We have a few things in mind, but if anyone as ideas for fun things that aren’t always on people’s radar - send them my way! There are few things that we’ve never done that we should have - so those are top on our list this time (Riverboat, Tom Sawyer island, Hall of Presidents). I really don’t know why we haven’t done those, but we will this trip! We had wanted to only eat at new (to us) restaurants this trip - and we have 3 new TS booked, but I think we’ll end up with some favorites as well.

We leave for Florida Thursday, November 10th (we haven’t decided if we are leaving at 6 when Mark gets home from work or if we’ll sleep for a couple of hours and leave at like 2am). We are driving straight through to Leesburg, FL to see Mark’s grandma. We’ll spend Friday with grandma then head to WDW Saturday, November 12th.

We are staying at the Villas at Wilderness Lodge. We have stayed on property only one time (at POP in 2007). We have a timeshare through RCI, so we usually do a condo offsite. My aunt gave me her timeshare at VWL for the week as a gift, so lodging was free this trip and we got a deluxe to boot! Our RCI is weeks, and we can’t trade into DVC with it.

Still debating on going to MVMCP - just don’t want to spend that much money for it…but feel like we should just do it. I think we’ll play it by ear and may go on Tuesday if we feel up to it and there are still tickets available.

Monday is Maia’s 11th birthday and we are heading to Universal for Harry Potter. She is a huge HP fan and the idea of going to Hogwarts on her 11th birthday is the best part of the trip for her! We went to WDW on Emma’s birthday a few years ago. This time we are celebrating Emma’s birthday on November 18th (a month after her bday) and both girls are thrilled with it. This is our first trip to Universal Orlando.

Our plans for the week will follow. I will post the pre trip plans in their own message, then go back and edit them to put in what we actually did. Does this sound like a good way to do it? Thanks for coming along on our trip! :mickey:


#2

Day 1 - Saturday - Magic Kingdom

We are preparing ourselves for the crowds this day (it is Jersey Week and Veterans Day weekend) - Touring Plans has this day as 10/10.

It is our tradition to go to MK at rope drop on our 1st day, so we are leaving grandmas house by 6am to get to VWL to leave the van and head to MK (opens at 8am). We’ll do whatever we can until the crowds get to us and then we’ll head out somewhere for lunch. If it’s still breakfast when we need to bail I want to go to Cooks and Co. for Tonga Toast (a 1st and must try for me)! Considering DTD if it’s lunch time, but it is the Festival of the Masters, so I am not sure how crowded it will be. We may head to the resort and swim if it’s nice weather, try to check in early if possible and may eat at Roaring Forks for lunch.

We’ll head back to MK midday to see if we can bear the crowds. It is evening EMH that night, so we can stay until 3am. Mark says I’m crazy to think that we’ll stay that late, but I am ok if they head back to the room and I’ll stay alone. maybe. :ninja:

This is the first trip I am not planning out each step - usually I have a plan/roadmap of how to tackle the park. This trip we are totally winging it - and just going where we go. I feel like we know the parks well enough that we can move from place to place easily without feeling like we are crisscrossing all over. Still, it feels weird to not know if we’ll head to Splash Mt or Space Mt or Teacups first, haha!


#3

Sounds like fun! I think it is so interesting how we all see the same things there, but we all do it so differently! Thank goodness!!!

By the way, my kids (11 and 9) LOVE tom Sawyer’s island… It is a fun little retreat from the parks, but there is so much to do… the kids love running around there. Have fun!


#4

Thanks! I am excited to go to Tom Sawyer’s Island. I think it sounds neat. I honestly have no idea why we haven’t done it before. Same with Hall of Presidents. I just don’t know why we’ve skipped it. Maybe so that we could go back this year and have lots of new things?!


#5

My kids, 8 & 5, really enjoy Tom Sawyer Island. Get there early so you have the best odds of finding a paintbrush.

We just got back from WL and the only thing that disappointed me was Roaring Forks food. Tried them several times and was only okay at best. I would suggest going to a different CS if you are away from the Lodge.

Enjoy your trip. I look forward to reading more.


#6

I would honestly say that Tom Sawyer’s island is a coin toss. I remember loving it as a kid, but now as an adult it just doesn’t have the same magic. Make sure you do your kids a favor and let them read the books before you go, or if you have to, let them watch the movie. It makes the island much better.


#7

TSI is fun but what makes it worth while is finding a paintbrush. There’s 6 and most if not all are found on the 1st boat over. It’s such a hot item because everyone in your party will get a free FP to Splash and BTMRR. I found one on our last trip and was given 10 anytime fp’s, but due to some head banging at BB the day before I didn’t get to use any of them.

HoP is a nice place to go for a mid-day break. It’s never too crowded and a good time to regroup. The show is very inspiring.


#8

Yes, but it is great for the kids to explore and run around… A place to run around and get some of the steam off… Fun for my kids. Hope it is fun for yours…


#9

[QUOTE=emamasa;1093966]I am so ready for this trip - I can’t even begin to describe it (luckily, I don’t have to - you all understand)!

I decided to do a pre-trip report and will come back and fill in with details and pictures during/after the trip.

Cast:
Sarah (me, 38)
Mark (DH, 40)
Maia (DD, turns 11 on the trip)
Emma (DD, just turned 8)

This is our 5th trip to WDW. Our 1st trip was January 2004, Mark had been once when he was a child. We are not using DDP and do not have park hoppers. DDP just wasn’t cost effective for us when I did the math. We’ve never had park hoppers, so we don’t know what we are missing and don’t want to spend the extra money for them. It’s never been a problem wanting to be able to hop in the past, so I think we’ll be fine this trip as well.

Our goal this trip is to try new things. I’ll highlight the new things we do as we go! We have a few things in mind, but if anyone as ideas for fun things that aren’t always on people’s radar - send them my way! There are few things that we’ve never done that we should have - so those are top on our list this time (Riverboat, Tom Sawyer island, Hall of Presidents). I really don’t know why we haven’t done those, but we will this trip! We had wanted to only eat at new (to us) restaurants this trip - and we have 3 new TS booked, but I think we’ll end up with some favorites as well.

We leave for Florida Thursday, November 10th (we haven’t decided if we are leaving at 6 when Mark gets home from work or if we’ll sleep for a couple of hours and leave at like 2am). We are driving straight through to Leesburg, FL to see Mark’s grandma. We’ll spend Friday with grandma then head to WDW Saturday, November 12th.

We are staying at the Villas at Wilderness Lodge. We have stayed on property only one time (at POP in 2007). We have a timeshare through RCI, so we usually do a condo offsite. My aunt gave me her timeshare at VWL for the week as a gift, so lodging was free this trip and we got a deluxe to boot! Our RCI is weeks, and we can’t trade into DVC with it.

Still debating on going to MVMCP - just don’t want to spend that much money for it…but feel like we should just do it. I think we’ll play it by ear and may go on Tuesday if we feel up to it and there are still tickets available.

Monday is Maia’s 11th birthday and we are heading to Universal for Harry Potter. She is a huge HP fan and the idea of going to Hogwarts on her 11th birthday is the best part of the trip for her! We went to WDW on Emma’s birthday a few years ago. This time we are celebrating Emma’s birthday on November 18th (a month after her bday) and both girls are thrilled with it. This is our first trip to Universal Orlando.

Our plans for the week will follow. I will post the pre trip plans in their own message, then go back and edit them to put in what we actually did. Does this sound like a good way to do it? Thanks for coming along on our trip! :mickey:[/QUOTE]

Thanks you for the post.


#10

Sarah, I cannot wait to hear all about your trip!!!